Open Source Braille Embosser

OpenBraille is an Open Source braille Embosser project, now international in scope. This social project aims to democratize assistive technologies for people with visual deficience. The plans of this invention were put online in Open Source on Instructables to allow the community to reproduce and improve the printer.

OpenBraille has been the subject of several articles published on internationally renowned DIY (Do It Yourself) websites. In addition, OpenBraille will be featured in the print version of the upcoming issue of Make: magazine.

“I was quite surprised to find out how expensive assistive technology is. A mechanical braille embosser cost over a 1000$USD and an electronic goes from 3000$ up to 5000$. I tough about making one for a friend but I couldn’t find a DIY version, so I decided to make one myself. This isn’t, by any means, a finish product. By making the machine an open source project, I am hoping others will improve the design. In a near future, with the help of others makers, OpenBraille will reduce the cost of these printers and it will allow anyone with a visual imparity to read and write. So, if you know someone, if you are a maker, if you are curious or if you want to help out, please feel free to follow this tutorial and help me built a community around OpenBraille. The encoder is pretty much the heart of the embosser. Most of the commercial machines emboss the dots by impacting the sheet. Because it’s harder to build a precise machine out of 3D printed parts, I designed a different system. Instead of impacting and applying all the energy in a single hit, OpenBraille uses a physical encoder and a roller. This way, the embossing is gradually done and the parts can be easily printed.”

Carlos Campos

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