In an effort to develop improved fit in work gloves, the Hohenstein Institute, Bönnigheim, Germany, asked 100 test volunteers to give them a hand—and allow a 3D scanner to map the hand’s 48 longitudinal and circumference measurements. The Institute is defining detailed virtual hand models and hand-measurement tables to help manufacturers create customized, ergonomic gloves.
Current standards require gloves to conform only to hand circumference and length, which means that an “average” size doesn’t accommodate people with long versus short fingers, fatter versus thinner hands, or three-dimensional variations in hand shape. The Institute’s portable scanner captured testers’ hand data, but they were also surveyed to find out glove-purchasing behavior, glove fit preferences and other consumer data. As the Institute develops a reliable and representative hand-size database, it also seeks partners in manufacturing to use the data for product development.