Guy Gets Arm Replaced Luke Skywalker Style



Evan Reynolds, 19, got his hand and part of his arm ripped off in a car accident and has since been fitted with an i-LIMB, a robotic hand developed by an Apple/Star Wars fanboy.
The i-Limb was developed by a Scottish company, Touch Bionics, and has won awards for its innovative technology. The total cost including the hand itself and the fitting is about £30,000.
Time Magazine named the i-LIMB as one of the Top 50 inventions of 2008.

Comments (46)

  1. Comment  by lesley adams

    This sort of technology can only get better year on year. I hope that it will be available to everyone who needs it. Amazing. All the best to Evan reynolds. He comes across as a very positive young man.

  2. Comment  by Josh

    Is it available in chrome?

  3. Comment  by Adrian

    I haven’t understand a word he said. And I’m sure it’s some kind of English.

    • Comment  by Thomas

      Adrian, please refrain yourself from commenting in the future.

      • Comment  by rob

        second that

        • Comment  by Santos

          same here…

          • Comment  by Jonny


      • Comment  by jmg


    • Comment  by Jason

      At least Evan is grammatically correct when he speaks.


      “I haven’t understood a word he said. I’m sure it’s some form of English.”


      “I didn’t understand a word he spoke and I’m sure it’s some form of English.”

      • Comment  by Moji

        This is the internet.
        And no, according to the transcript below, Evan very clearly doesn’t speak grammatically correct. Please refer to this quotation. “The accident happened in August 2006 just after my 17th birthday when me and some friends had just been at a park…” “Me and my friends?” Come on now, Evan.

    • Comment  by Marcel

      Adrian, I’m dutch and even I understood him.

    • Comment  by Moji

      Yeah it was really hard for me to understand too. Weird.

    • Comment  by J-Levs

      ya hes one of them British persons…soft accent

    • Comment  by nick


  4. Comment  by carlo

    translation please, does anybody have this with subtitles in english?

    • Comment  by Wodon

      Here is the transcript I have typed for, apologies for any mistakes:

      Hi, I’m Evan Reynolds and I’m 19

      I’m one of the first people in the UK to receive the revolutionary I-Limb Hand.

      The Accident happened in August 2006 just after my 17th birthday, when me and some friends had just been at a park, and we just decided to leave and I jumped into the front passenger seat and I had my arm sort of resting on the front windowsill and, as the car drove out, my friend clipped this big wooden post that used to hold a gate and that trapped my forearm in between the back of the window and the big wooden post as he drove through.
      And it pulled my arm off, and it’s called degloving ‘cos you can imagine it pulling the hand off and pulling all the skin off and the muscles etc.
      And my hand was left on the post.

      When I first got the I-Limb and I put it on, this is the amazing thing about it, is I put it on, and within 2 minutes I was using it as well as I can do it today.

      I could pick up a ball and I could throw it to the other hand, i could do loads of things, it just literally worked instantly i think that is the amazing thing about it.

      The way the technicality side of it works is, as you can see I’ve got a battery up here, that gives the power supply to the hand.

      And the hand has computing bits in it, and each digit is a rotary driven, like single piece, and it can be replaced easily if it breaks.

      And the thumb can move round like this, there’s a few different grips as well. There’s the bar grip, and then you’ve got the CD grip, and the precision grip.

      The electrodes are in the forearm and under the forearm, and then the information from me tensing my muscles will go down a wire, into the hand and that will correspond to moving the fingers.

      There are a lot of things I can do now that I have the I-Limb, like holding a packet of crisps while I’m eating. Holding an apple, eating an apple. being able to butter bread, it is also delicate enough to pick up an egg.

      Another good demonstration of the I-Limb’s accuracy is stuff like I have learned how to write… I’ve always been right handed, but I’ve learned how to write with the left hand.

      • Comment  by Alan


        I see you are wearing a Franklin and Marshall t-shirt which is my Alma Mater. Are you a student there?

    • Comment  by Greego

      He’s an Englishman speaking English. I’m Australian and understood every word as we speak English here as well. Subtitles would only be required for the deaf or the retarded - which are you?

      • Comment  by moyo

        just north american. :D

        • Comment  by Rolan

          I’m North American and I understood him perfectly… So that one is ruled out too.

      • Comment  by James

        I once watched a documentary about something in Scotland (can’t remember what). Anyways, they interviewed a Scottish gentleman from southern Scotland who’s accent was so thick that you couldn’t understand a word he said really. Luckily, the producers had decided to write in subtitles because they couldn’t understand him either.

  5. Comment  by John Wright

    Wow, absolutely AMAZING!

  6. Comment  by Aaron

    Sad. When I was first entering college, back in 1997, I wanted to learn bio-engineering and build this exact type of thing. I talked with leaders in many prosthetics companies to see what paths I should take in order to do this. They all led me to believe it was a pipe dream and to forget about it. It’s to bad… this technology could have been developed 5 years earlier here in the US.

    • Comment  by Chris

      In 1991 I was looking at cybernetics for my college career. It was a reality at that time, although the only choice in the world for school was UCLA. The path was twelve years of school for the major.

  7. Comment  by Someone in Pittasburgh

    When I worked at a hospital a few years back they demo’ed this, they also showed a far more sophisticated hand prototype, but that the time it required to much maintenance for practicaly application. Maybe this man will soon get this new hand that has an estimated 70% articulation rating compared to a real hand.

    @adrian - Yeah he has an accent, he speaks clearly though. I had no problems understanding him; maybe you need to turn up your volume.

  8. Comment  by PeeKay

    Just 20 years ago we could imagine such technologies only as part of sci-fi movies. I hope full-body replacements (like in “Ghost in the shell”) will be available during lifespan of present generation - somehow I believe they can pro-long life for like … unlimited amount of time: less organs can be destroyed by age, cancer, alcohol.

  9. Comment  by James

    “I haven’t understand a word he said”
    “And I’m sure it’s some kind of English.”
    Well, you certainly lead by example.

  10. Comment  by Christopher D. Osborn

    Wow, that’s so awesome! I too had a hard time understanding some of it, and I had the volume plenty high. His accent is just a bit strong is all. I’ve heard accents way strong than his, even in the U.S.

  11. Comment  by blah

    I had no problem understanding him.

  12. Comment  by Loolololool

    He speaks english clearer than any American can.
    I’m not English either.

  13. Comment  by Steinschmetzer

    im german. i dont listened. i thought it would be more…luke skywalker? but anyway gj on that arm thing. have fun with it, hopefully this will become affordable for all who need it.

  14. Comment  by bbb

    not everyone is native english, instead of being picky about the grammar you could rather concentrate on the technology or on the guy.

  15. Comment  by Algie

    Looks like it should come in pretty handy

  16. Comment  by muunlitr

    Yes, he’s difficult to understand at first but I heard him. I just had to replay the video a couple of times. What a really brave and wonderful man he is. I’m sure his family is very proud and thrilled for his success. Any gal would be lucky to marry him.

  17. Comment  by Kelly

    Dude, Im totally cutting my arm off.

    • Comment  by MrHaxx1

      Post a video of it. It becomes viral instantly.

  18. Comment  by Jei

    Degloving. Ow. I can’t imagine going through something so painful. He’s very positive though - it seems like he’s practiced quite a bit with the hand. Amazing artistry too, a good replication of a limb. In passing I probably wouldn’t know the difference.

  19. Comment  by Rav

    That’s just amazing. it moves so much faster than the ones I can remember from grade school, and does not look nearly as fake as those did. It’s great to know that if something happens to some one I know or my self, this technology may be available. Pricey, but available.

    And as for the people who find him hard to understand, I’m an American and can understand him just fine. The only thing I noticed was that the room he was in had to much sound reverberation.

  20. Comment  by EB.

    I’m American and I had some trouble understanding him. Thanks for the transcript.
    This is so cool! I hope this becomes available to everyone soon.

  21. Comment  by Lincoln

    I’m American and damn he’s easy to understand.

  22. Comment  by Billy Bob

    I’m a mercan too. I done understood him just fine.

  23. Comment  by saywhat?

    I think this is amazing!!!!

  24. Comment  by north american person

    my god its a video showing this amazing new technology and people are stuck on the fact that he has bad grammer or a heavy accent.. thats sad

    i for one could understand every word, and thank you for those tasteful north american jokes, ha..ha

  25. Comment  by peter m

    He is speaking perfectly normal English probably because he is English.
    Little wonder nobody likes Americans.

    As an aside, I was working on powered artificial arms in 1971 at university college london. Takes a while doesn’t it

    • Comment  by Drew

      Actually if you want to get technical it wasn’t until after the separation of America from Great Britten did the classic “English” accent start to develop. Please do not generalize an entire country based off of one moron / successful troll.

  26. Comment  by Drew

    Here’s an idea, What if you were to program the hand to do specific things, like draw a picture for instance. That would be fairly easy to do (I think). Just have the hand hold a pen and move back and forth across a paper printer style pressing the pen to paper for dark areas and raising it for lights. Then if you added a connection to a camera and along with some software you could change what you draw whenever you like. Provided it is fairly simple.

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Added: January 21st, 2009 at 6:07 am

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Category: People, Science & Technology