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3D Printed Otoscope

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Revision as of 09:53, 4 December 2014 by Amwallis (Talk | Contributions) (Cost savings)

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MOST Delta filament as guide.JPG This page was part of an MTU course MSE4777 OA and MSE4777 OB/MSE5777/EE4777/EE5777: Open-source 3-D printing

Please leave comments using the discussion tab. The course runs in the Fall semester. It is not open edit.

3D Printed Otoscope

Project developed by Amwallis
This OSAT has been designed but not yet tested - use at own risk.
This OSAT has been prototyped.

You can help Appropedia by contributing to the next step in this OSAT's status.


  1. This is currently a placeholder page for a project I am working on - details will be updated soon
  2. Paragraph description of the OSAT - why is it Appropriate? What need does it fulfil? Are there case studies you have found of a technology being used successfully?
  3. Picture of completed print using

Bill of Materials

Printed Parts:

    1. The main otoscope body weights 20 grams. The approximate cost of this part is $0.50. 87 min
    2. The battery cover weights 6 grams. The approximate cost of this part is $0.15. 19 min
    3. The switch cover weights 2 grams. The approximate cost of this part is $0.05. 4 min
    4. The circular base on which the lens assembly and the ear piece mounts weights 5 grams. The approximate cost of this part is $0.15. 22 min
    5. The ear piece weights 3 grams. The approximate cost of this part is $0.08. 22 min
    6. The lens assembly weights 3 grams. The approximate cost of this part is $0.08. 17 min

Other Parts:

    1. A SMD pushbutton switch is used to activate the otoscope's light. The approximate cost of this part is $0.57.
    2. A white LED is used to shine light into the ear. The approximate cost of this part is $0.80.
    3. A 220 ohm resistor is used to limit current draw. The approximate cost of this part is $0.10.
    4. A 38mm diameter, 150mm focal length concave lens in used. The approximate cost of this part is $3.95.
    5. About half a meter of 22 gauge solid core wire is used. Cost is assumed to be negligible.

Total cost to manufacture is $6.43

Tools needed for fabrication of the OSAT

  1. MOST Delta RepRap or similar RepRap 3-D printer
  2. Depending on print quality, a knife may be needed to shave away plastic on the edges of the parts that come together.
  3. Super glue is needed to join the switch cover and the mount base to the main otoscope body.
  4. A soldering iron and solder is needed to securely attach the electrical components together
  5. Wire strippers and/or diagonals are needed to trim the wiring
  6. Rubber bands may be helpful to hold some of the parts together while the glue dries.

Skills and Knowledge Necessary to Make the OSAT

  1. You will need to know how to solder [1]

Technical Specifications and Assembly Instructions

  1. Provide directions for print/assembly - be detailed enough in your “how to” to ensure that someone could construct the device from your description. Consider the elegance of IKEA like instructions.
  2. Include print time estimate
  3. Include assembly time estimate
  4. Including drawings or pictures of the device at stage of assembly at minimum. (
  5. Consider video if appropriate

Common Problems and Solutions

  • Include common mistakes/problems to avoid in building your OSAT and how to overcome them

Cost savings

  1. Assuming PLA plastic costing $0.025 per gram is used ($25 per 1kg spool), the otoscope can be built for $6.43
  2. A inexpensive home use otoscope costs approximately $30.00
  3. This results in a savings of $23.57 as the otoscope can be printed for 21% of the commercial equivalent


  • The sources of information (e.g. engineering handbooks, journal articles, government documents, webpages, books, magazine articles etc.). References should use the <ref> </ref> and <references/> tags and can be in any format but should include all the information necessary for someone else to find the same information you did. For example: [1]
  1. web page: Department of Energy (DOE) Landscaping and Energy Efficiency, DOE/GO-10095 (1995) Available:

Based on the developmental needs addressed (e.g. food, heat, electricity, clean water, health care, etc.) be sure to label your device in the proper categories e.g. use [[Category:Water]]. Be sure to categorize your device so that it will be easy to find – for example “Low voltage connection basics” is categorized in [[Category:How tos]] [[Category:Electricity]] [[Category:Electric lighting]].