Category: Manufacturing / Assembly Work Station

Earplug Chain Fixture

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---- CUSTOMIZED ADAPTATION --------- PURPOSE: To create a custom adapted assistive device for use by CW Resources, a nonprofit organization in Britain, Connecticut to assist their employees with disabilities in the assembly process of earplug fixture kits for the Department of Defense. The assembly of the earplug kits required the insertion of a small chain into the case as part of the assembly process. It was difficult for some employees with disabilities to participate in this work task as they lacked the fine motor skills necessary to complete the full assembly process; as a result, these employees were unable to participate and reap the financial benefits of this contract. Students at Wethersfield High School of Wethersfield, Connecticut worked with CW Resources and their employees with disabilities to create a customized assistive technology device called the Earplug Chain Fixture (ECF) that allowed the employees with fine motor ski and hand disabilities to participate in the assembly of earplug fixture kits. The final device can be mounted onto a board which can be clamped onto a table. A metal cradle locks the earplug box in place and a funnel is used to insert the chain into the small hole on the earplug box with the assistance of a chain insertion tool. An employee with Baller-Gerold Syndrome was able to assemble the earplug kit for the first time with the ECF device created by the students at Wethersfield High School. The employees with disabilities who had previously been unable to participate in this contract for CW Resources now have the option for additional income as a result of this assistive device. The ECF was the 2013 winner of the AbilityOne Design Challenge. AUTHOR: Judy Owen. TITLE: Innovation For Accessibility. WEBSITE: Forbes Entrepreneurs. REF:


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Earplug Chain Fixture