An apparatus and method for bending or shaping orthodontic archwires or other medical devices into a complex, patient individual shape is described. The apparatus comprises of two moveable, compact, manipulators with, in total, at least three revolute joints defining three rotation axes and at least three prismatic joints defining at least three translation axes. Gripping tools are provided on the manipulators. The two manipulators are arranged to allow a relative movement in six degrees of freedom. A reduced complexity embodiment is also described having only one or two revolute joints.