How to Make a Foot‐Operated Mouse Out of Wood

This mouse adaptation allows someone with a disability to make mouse clicks with their feet. It is fairly easy to make, maybe a one or two hour project, and can provide a usable, home-made alternative to an expensive adaptive mouse.

Steps

  1. Image titled Make a Foot‐Operated Mouse Out of Wood Step 1
    1
    Gather materials and prepare to recreate this design.
  2. Image titled Make a Foot‐Operated Mouse Out of Wood Step 2
    2
    Cut two pieces of the 2x3 inch lumber to the same length as the mouse.
  3. Image titled Make a Foot‐Operated Mouse Out of Wood Step 3
    3
    Cut a third piece to a length equal to the width of the first two pieces plus the width of the mouse. Lay them out as shown around the mouse.
  4. Image titled Make a Foot‐Operated Mouse Out of Wood Step 4
    4
    Cut a piece of plywood to fit underneath the mouse and surrounding wood pieces.
  5. Image titled Make a Foot‐Operated Mouse Out of Wood Step 5
    5
    Screw the 3 side pieces of 2x3 to the plywood forming a 3-sided box as shown above.
  6. Image titled Make a Foot‐Operated Mouse Out of Wood Step 6
    6
    Cut two pieces of plywood about 2 to 3 inches (5.1 to 7.6 cm) wide and about an inch longer than the mouse.
  7. Image titled Make a Foot‐Operated Mouse Out of Wood Step 7
    7
    Attach these to the 2x3 piece that runs across the base of the mouse using one small hinge on each piece of plywood.
  8. Image titled Make a Foot‐Operated Mouse Out of Wood Step 8
    8
    Locate a spot above each mouse button on each of the two plywood hinged pieces and run one of the longer screws into the under side of plywood so that when the hinged plywood is lowered, the screw rests on the button.
  9. Image titled Make a Foot‐Operated Mouse Out of Wood Step 9
    9
    Fabricate some kind of foot rest to support the user's heel. One option is a piece of Styrofoam insulation. You can also use a piece of 2x4 with foam padding over it.
  10. Image titled Make a Foot‐Operated Mouse Out of Wood Step 10
    10
    Hook up another mouse to your computer to move the cursor, and use your foot-operated mouse for clicking.
    • For positioning the cursor, a trackball may be easier for some people to use than a mouse. You can also attach a vertical handle to a regular mouse if that makes holding it easier.

Tips

  • Placing a rubber shelf liner under the foot mouse keeps it from sliding around and protects the floor.

Things You'll Need

  • About 2 feet (0.6 m) of 2x3 inch lumber
  • About 2 sq.ft of 38 inch (1.0 cm) plywood
  • A USB mouse (plus another mouse input for cursor movement)
  • 2 small hinges
  • 4 screws, about 38 inch (1.0 cm) long
  • 6 screws, about 1.25 or 1.5 inches (3.2 or 3.8 cm) long

Article Info

Categories: Woodworking