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New Body Powered Prosthetic Bands

We were tired of seeing rubber bands that looked like this after only a short time:

Used bands

It finally dawned on us that the bands that are normally used are likely just rubber tubing cut with scissors. Looking for some bands that would look better and last longer, we ordered a bunch of tubing in different materials from McMaster-Carr, in a variety of durometers and with different properties, such as ozone or UV resistance.

Tube stock for bands

The tubing we ordered was all 1/8” walled 5/8” OD tubing, and cutting it to appropriate lengths, we managed to get some of it on. The tool we were using to apply it was a little flimsy for this higher durometer and slightly thicker material, so we had limited success with some, and so far only the Super Soft Latex Rubber Tubing has worked, but we’re happy with the results.

Hook with black bands

The silicone proved too slippery to stay on the applicator, but we have ordered a much less flimsy-looking castration band applicator that we hope will do the trick.

The complete list of tubing that we currently have appears below. We will document the successes and failures, create a better cutting method, and post some data on clamping force as the project progresses.

Part Number Description Price / Foot
5234K82 Super Soft Latex Rubber Tubing 3/8” Id, 5/8” Od, 1/8” Wall Thickness, Black (Same as 5234K52) $1.95
5235K53 Oil-Resistant Buna-N Rubber Tubing 3/8” Id, 5/8” Od, 1/8” Wall Thickness, Black $0.92
5236K17 Silicone Rubber Tubing Soft, 3/8” Id, 5/8” Od, 1/8” Wall, Red (Same as 5236K44) $2.35
5236K371 Silicone Rubber Tubing Soft, 3/8” Id, 5/8” Od, 1/8” Wall, Blue (Same as 5236K44) $2.35
51845K59 High Purity Silicone Rubber Tubing Non-Reinforced, 3/8” Id, 5/8” Od, 1/8” Wall $5.92
5119K52 High Temperature Viton Rubber Tubing Firm, 3/8” Id, 5/8” Od, 1/8” Wall, Black $16.06
5554K17 Laboratory Clear Tygon PVC Tubing 3/8” Id, 5/8” Od, 1/8” Wall Thickness $3.37