Reddit can seem like a magical place for people to find each other. And for a Redditor named Adam, the connection he made there was life-changing. Adam needed a new prosthetic half of his pinky. The cost would be astronomical, around $15,000 to $20,000.
His insurance refused him and he couldn't afford it out of his own pocket. So he did what a lot of people do when they need help or advice: Adam posted on various subreddits, looking for someone to print a prosthetic for him. In the end, Adam found someone who could help. A fellow Redditor named Known_Hippo4702 took an existing theme and worked on optimising it. "After several versions," Adam wrote, "they built me a working version and started working for a person who didn't have a thumb. It was a learning curve but they have an ability that amazed me and they printed me a new finger for several thousand dollars cheaper than they offered me.
Dentures like Adam's are expensive and need to be replaced every few years due to typical wear and tear. So they are expensive and will remain so forever. “[3D printing] is going to change the industry,” says Adam.