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Local Inventor Creates Automatic Nail Clipper, Giving Independence Back To Many

MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) -- It's something everyone has to do, something most of us barely think about. But for some, clipping their fingernails is a major obstacle.

Now, one Minnesota family is trying to do something to change that.

Geno Mucciacciaro of Chaska received a brain injury after he was hurt while serving in Afghanistan and now has trouble controlling his hands.

"A degree of independence was taken away and little things add up and are worse than big things in my opinion, like your fingernails, absolutely," said Mucciacciaro.

He's now trying a new approach, the ClipDifferent Pro.

"I clip my fingernails and I leave, I can do that now, that's a big deal," said Mucciacciaro. "It's a positive thing instead of a negative thing."

Kathi Holmes of Minnetonka, who has arthritis, has also been using it, and she plans on sharing her new find.

"I have a son in law and when I told him about it, he said, 'Oh I'd like that.' Guess what he's getting for Christmas," said Holmes.

That's exactly why Tom McMullen of Bloomington invented it. His sister and his late wife had polio, and he's been working on the idea for 35 years.

"It helps people with dexterity in their hands, people who are sightless, people who have lost a limb, people who have Parkinson's, people with other neurological issues," said McMullen.

It's a battery operated device that allows people to place their nails in a slot and a blade gently trims the nail, so there's no danger of cuts.

The idea is taking off. McMullen's family business is up for a national Edison Inventors award, but he says that is not the point.

"My dream for Clip Different is to get this into the hands of the people who need it all over the country," said McMullen "That's my big dream."

The ClipDifferent Pro is sold online for $149. The company says it lasts "years and years."

They are now working on a version for little kids.

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