Shawn Ng: The Guy With The 3DP Bionic Leg

Shawn Ng overcame personal challenges and printing problems to complete his graduation project successfully.

Top Product and Industrial Design graduate Shawn Ng spoke eagerly of his love for 3D printing (3DP) and even bought a 3D printer earlier, to explore the technology.

For his graduation project at Temasek Polytechnic’s School of Design, he 3D-printed ‘SecondSkin’, a prosthetic leg. Shawn’s ‘SecondSkin’ came about from a TED talk inspiration and from a personal connection to an amputee. He believes amputees should live life without disability by choice.

CAD model of ‘SecondSkin’

3D-printed ‘SecondSkin’

He reasoned that 3D printing customises prostheses to different residual limbs’ sizes and shapes, and costs cheaper too.

Shawn researched and brainstormed the form, shape and mechanics, and translated it into computer-aided design using Rhino3D. Initial slicing with CURA found the prosthesis too big to print, so he subdivided it into sections.

Being a newcomer to 3DP, Shawn failed several times to print it out, including one instance when the computer ‘fell asleep’ and cancelled the job at 90% of completion!

Shawn’s lecturer-in-charge Marcus Heng and another lecturer Lin Wei advised in his development process.

Towards the final stretch, Shawn’s mother was hospitalised and he stayed at home with permission to finish his project and also to care for his mother.

Besides schoolwork, Shawn also dabbled in 3D printed jewellery for a competition last year. He used the Alias software at the time, but the 3D models had surfaces that didn’t close properly, resulting in many failed prints. Hence he switched to Rhino3D after that for a better design process.

The Ginkgo Press Team

The Ginkgo Press Team covers any news related to 3D Printing, which includes interviews, events and technology.

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