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Making your own pressure absorbing stylus

Kim Magee

Kim Magee

Kim is the Manager of ComTEC as well as the Electronic...

For some stylus users, it is difficult to moderate the amount of force they exert on a touch screen. This may be due to limited movement control, the need to get a large amount of sensory feedback or sheer enthusiasm.

Most commercially available stylus options have a solid shaft. Some have a small tip that has some ‘give’, however absorb little of the downward pressure. Gorilla glass is tough, but repeated stabbing with a pointed metal tool is not ideal. 

In the past we had access to a stylus from Shapedad which had a T-bar rubber construction. The Tbar shape was ideal for some of users who had difficulty grasping and controlling a pen/crayon shaped pointing tool. The shaft was covered with conductive fabric. This has been updated to a solid (no doubt more durable) metal shaft, leaving a gap in our stylus kit bag.

Not being able to find anything on the market to meet our needs, we ‘hacked’ one of our own from a sensory chew aid and a conductive finger stylus. We couldn’t find a true T-bar shape, so we used the Y shaped ARK Y Chew Oral Motor Chew (Royal Blue Very Firm / XXT - XXT ‘Xtra Xtra Tough’) and a conductive finger sock (Finger Stylus]

Pressure absorbing stylus

It’s not perfect, but the Y shape still allows grasp within the palm. The sock is large, so more suited to larger targets rather than a keyboard on a phone-sized device, where the target would be obscured by the pointer. Having the touchscreen device on an angled support could help both with positioning so that the wrist is slightly bent upwards, assisting grasp of the Y-portion as well as reducing how much of the screen is obscured by the hand and stylus. 

If you’d like to get more information or support on many access options you can make a referral to ComTEC.

ComTEC is a service of Yooralla

ComTEC is a team of allied health professionals who specialise in communication technology.

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