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Car wash - what happens when one uses an iLimb Ultra Revolution *just* to assist holding the water tube [glove damage within minutes]

Cite this article:
Wolf Schweitzer: Technical Below Elbow Amputee Issues - Car wash - what happens when one uses an iLimb Ultra Revolution *just* to assist holding the water tube [glove damage within minutes]; published May 3, 2014, 13:57; URL: https://www.swisswuff.ch/tech/?p=2965.

BibTeX: @MISC{schweitzer_wolf_1561458775, author = {Wolf Schweitzer}, title = {{Technical Below Elbow Amputee Issues - Car wash - what happens when one uses an iLimb Ultra Revolution *just* to assist holding the water tube [glove damage within minutes]}}, month = {May},year = {2014}, url = {https://www.swisswuff.ch/tech/?p=2965}}


The iLimb Ultra Revolution is a great product in that one wishes it to succeed and to prevail. And in that one loves it for no reasons.

Really, for no reasons. Here is a glove inspection after a normal car wash, when I used the iLimb to hold on to the tube that was blasting water. I used my (left) hand to direct the tube's sprayer, and I used the (right) (iLimb) hand to drag the tube behind me, and to hold it, while walking, very slowly, around the car while washing it down.

By the side of the index finger metacarpal region, towards the thumb, there are sharp protrusions underneath the glove. That is why the glove gets damaged here really easily and fast. Tube holding damaged this glove in this location, too:

DSCF2770

By the side of the middle index finger joint, there are also edgy structures. No wonder that pressing a water tube that just wants to exert soft but mechanically strong pressure simply kills the glove.

However, washing a car should not count as "heavy manual work". Building or repairing a car, or maybe swapping wheels, should. Not holding on to a water tube.

DSCF2768

The gloves' index and middle finger tips also died. Seems like the glove is far too thin to do even the simplest of things.

DSCF2767

There are other bi-manual tasks that are similar to the type of strain:

  • using a broom to brush a sidewalk or indoor floor, or a patio
  • using a vacuum cleaner
  • carrying a shopping basket
  • holding a hedge cutter
  • holding a lawn mower
  • riding a bike and holding on to a handle bar

Clearly, a Touch Bionics iLimb Ultra Revolution is not quite up for the job unless one has the cash ready to pay for the (estimated) 700 USD for those fifteen minutes. In my view this is massively un economic. But then, wearing an arm for 80'000 USD, that does not survive a simple car wash assist grip, that is not exactly economic either.

Now that the glove is torn, no way that hand can be used any further. Fluid might leak in and to prevent any damage, the iLimb then must be retired to total inactivity up until that point in time when one does find a 3-4 hour free time moment during a normal work week, to go to the prosthetist, to get the glove swapped. Then, that adds to the overall economy of that prosthetic hand.

All current "bionic" hands are really having glove issues nowadays. So these hands should be designed and sold with protective stiff gloves to prevent damage of outer gloves, or, - and that was my suggestion for the iLimb already weeks ago - 3D surface scanning should yield little hard plastic clip-on interface parts that negotiate the gloves' requirements for a smooth surface and the hand's requirement to not have any mechanical impedance on the way of finger motion. Because of anything, too much of a thick glove will also make a "bionic" hand pointless to wear.

At this point, having a glove just die after one (1) single activity illustrates rather well that the real reason behind having an iLimb might be anything at all, but that reason is certainly not some "function" in context of "activities of daily living" (ADL).

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