Big Kids

Dad teaches himself robotics- all for son born without an arm

10-year-old Jamie Miler was born without a left hand- but he's still a "better PS4 player than most people." 

His dad Callum, from Durham in the U.K, began researching prosthetics on the Internet- hoping to give Jamie more freedom as her grows older. 

He stumbled across a charity called Unlimbitied, who use 3D printers to create robotic arms. 

Unfortunately it was a long waiting list, as the charity is run by just two people working in a shed- so Callum decided to do it himself. 

He sold his telescope and camera and bought a Chinese 3D printer off ebay for $160. After downloading the designs, the father-son duo got to work. 

Jamie is now adapting to his new arm, and the pair have made two more with bendable elbows. They are currently working on a fourth with electronic sensors. 

“I bought the printer, watched a couple of tutorial videos on YouTube and within weeks Jamie high-five me with his left hand for the first time.”

He can now throw a ball with his robotic arm. 

Speaking to Storytrender, Callum said that seeing his son being able to use both arms is "emotional"

 “Just seeing my boy being able to hold things and throw a ball with his left hand was quite emotional. Now he can grab life with both hands.

“Jamie was born without a left hand. After the birth, the nurses asked if we were aware of any problems and we said no. When we saw Jamie he had no left hand and it just hadn't been picked up on the scans.

“It was a little bit of a shock but I was joking about it within an hour. It was never a problem for us and we never let Jamie think he had any disability. We taught him to just get on with it." 

While medical intervention was suggested in the past, the family decided against it- instead pushing Jamie to challenge himself. 

"His lack of a left hand had never stopped him – we always do crafts together."

After filming Jamie throwing a ball for the first time, Callum started to get emotional. 

“He tried the blue arm for the first time on Saturday afternoon and within a few minutes he could throw a ball. I had to stop filming because I was tearing up.

“When we fitted it and it worked, that was just too much for me to take in. It was a very emotional time.

“The first arm and hand fixture stopped above his elbow and by bending the elbow, it created movement in the fingers.

“Now I’ve downloaded a few 3D programmes myself because Jamie wants his name embossing on the top of the arm bit. We’ve also come across another company that use sensors to help move the fingers so we’re looking into that.”

Jamie now feels "a bit like a superhero":

"I can catch a ball, hold stuff and play games with it now," he said. "In the future I would like to learn how to make them like my dad so I can help other people who need them."

Jamie will now certainly be able to grab life with both hands! 

Search results for
View all