The Chest Pencil

This is an unusual object on display at the London Science Museum, which offers this explanation:

This invention was made for a man who had lost both arms at the shoulders, an extremely rare injury even among the 41,000 British servicemen who lost one or more limbs during the First World War. For these men, their injuries were so severe that no limb stump remained to which an artificial limb could be attached. In this crude device, a canvas strip which has a pencil attached to a wooden disc at the front was strapped around the chest. Once the pencil was on a sheet of paper, the amputee would write via movements of his torso. This would have been extremely difficult. It was invented by a Major Maclure, an officer in the British Army.
     Posted By: Alex - Fri Sep 21, 2012
     Category: Inventions

Why not just hold the pencil in your mouth?! :coolhmm:
Posted by Tyrusguy on 09/21/12 at 10:37 AM
Figures, some "O" came up with this idea to "help" his troops! He, of course, would only need dictate what he wanted written to his batman.

@Tyrusguy: My thought exactly. But this is left over from the last of the really, really stupid line-em-up and shoot-em-down wars. Tens of thousands were lost fighting over the same strip of mud.
Posted by Expat47 in Athens, Greece on 09/21/12 at 11:33 AM
Bet it still sucked when he broke the point off.
Posted by Dave on 09/21/12 at 02:31 PM
If this hadn't been invented, and the patient wouldn't hold a writing implement in the mouth, I see only one other alternative. And it isn't pretty.
Posted by KDP on 09/21/12 at 02:40 PM
If the poor guy had any head or foot movement, those would seem preferable.

KDP, are you thinking of the Robert Mapplethorpe approach?
Posted by Frank on 09/21/12 at 04:41 PM
I told you it wasn't pretty, Frank.
Posted by KDP on 09/21/12 at 05:45 PM
Frankly KDP I don't give a pencil ! 😝
Posted by BrokeDad in Midwest US on 09/21/12 at 08:00 PM
If the point does break how will he turn the crank handle on the pencil sharpener?
Posted by patty on 09/22/12 at 05:50 PM
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