5-year-old gets measured for 3D printed prosthetic hands

Posted at 8:58 AM, May 16, 2016
and last updated 2016-05-16 08:58:52-04

WYOMING, Mich -- A little girl from Wyoming is hoping a new set of hands will give her a new sense of confidence. Baylee Sherman born with amniotic band syndrome, which left some of her fingers bonded together and others shorter than the rest.

After FOX 17 aired Baylee's story in March, we received multiple calls from people who wanted to help Baylee feel more comfortable in her skin.

In a few short weeks, three students at the Kent Career Technical Center will build the little girl two pair of prosthetic hands with the skills they're learning in their 3D modeling and printing class.

"I think I'm more excited than she is," said Alicia Sherman, Baylee's mom. "I don't think she realizes it's a reality."

baylee's hands

"It’s a really big opportunity for all three of us," said Alexis Jendrasiak, a senior at the tech center.

Rich Vandermey, the trio's teacher, first presented them with the idea after he saw our story and wanted to help out.

Vandermey works for a volunteering organization named E-Nable, a global network of passionate volunteers who find ways to help people by using 3D printing.

Vandermey, E-nable, and the three students will work together to make a prothesis to help Baylee's fingers look as normal as possible.

"Being a part of something as big as changing somebody’s life with new hands, it’s kind of humbling a little bit," Vandermey said. "(The students) know exactly what they have to do."

Dylan Avellaneea, a senior at the school, said the prosthetic will take roughly 20 hours to print and about two hours to assemble.

baylee measures hands

"To not only be able to do something for someone but to know we can make a difference in the world is just something so small to make a big difference," Avellaneea said.

Baylee met with the three students and their teacher so they could measure her hands. Once her measurements were taken, the students plugged them into software that scales and slices 3D models that will eventually be printed.

3d printer

"I never thought I’d be part of something like this going into this classroom, but it’s really awesome," said Mallory Kennedy, also a senior in the class.

Once the 3D printed hands are created, all Baylee will have to do is twist her wrist and her new fingers will bend. "It’s really important to me to make [them] so she’s able to do everything she wants to do," said Jendrasiak.

The students plan to make Baylee two sets of hands. One pair will mimic Elsa from "Frozen" and the other, Mal from "The Descendents."

"We’re so grateful for everybody, and everybody is so nice," Sherman said.

Now, the countdown begins until Baylee gets her new hands.

Vandermey and E-Nable are providing Baylee's hands free of charge to Baylee and her family and will continue to do so for the rest of her life, including new gloves and repairs.

"No money, no nothing her whole life, which is incredible," Sherman said.

Once the hands are complete, Sherman is hoping to get tickets to Disney World so Baylee can have dinner with the Disney Princesses and have Mal and Elsa hand her the gloves in person.

The link to their GoFundMe Page is here.