So Peter linked to this YouTube video called skeletonics, and it looked really cool but a lot of work, so I decided to see how cheap and easy I could make it. I decided to start with an arm rather than going for a full exoskeleton.
First prototype was a small scale version made of drinking straws and sticky tape.
Second version was a full scale version made of bamboo with cloth tape for the joints. It could magnify arm movements to about double, but couldn't be strapped on so you needed to hold it with both hands. Bicycle brake used as the claw.
Third version used bolts for most of the joints instead of cloth tape, still uses cloth tape in other parts. Double sided Velcro to tie on the arm are used for strapping it on. Still has bike brake claw, though it's taped on more firmly in this version. Needs a little more reinforcing as there is some unwanted movement in some of the bits of bamboo. One of the bits of bamboo is broken and should be replaced, instead it has a parallel bit of bamboo as a splint.
I have another bolt and bamboo arm with less reinforcing, no claw and no straps, that looks kind of like a praying mantis arm.
I have a bunch of ideas of where to go next. Fixing up the main bamboo arm. Making an aluminium tube version. Making an exoskeleton leg to support a backpack or the arm. Hydraulic hands using syringes and cheap plastic tubing. Wearing a similar mechanism as a wing.
Hmmm, possibly this should be in the third person so others can edit it more naturally. – Caspian