Been playing with my new toy again, and still impressed with it. I’ve not used it outdoors yet, it’s too wet and I’m feeling too crappy, but as per my first impressions, even indoors and on carpet, it’s much easier to push, and faster.
With care – it’s not as easy as they’d have you believe – attaching the FreeWheel All-terrain gizmo to the footrest, removing it again to go indoors, and attaching it to the supplied “perch” which bolts to the spreader bar on the seat back of (most?), rigid chairs, are all doable while seated in the chair, though as I expected the latter is the more difficult as you’re unsighted. Just be sure to keep your fingers out of the clamp!
I’ve managed to arrange storage for all four of my chairs, though not in the way I’d planned. Restructuring the airing cupboard was dismissed as a bad idea. The shelving is pretty poorly put together, and if I remove the centre leg and replace it with a leg at either end, it’s liable to come down around my ears (looking at it, I’m surprised it hasn’t already, held up as it is by a meagre handful of what appear to be 2-inch oval nails – not a screw to be seen).
A bit of careful measuring showed I could fit both powerchairs in the bedroom, and so it proved. The dismantled Quickie Ti and FreeWheel are on the airing cupboard floor, from where it’s the work of just a few minutes to retrieve and assemble them (basically, just fit the wheels, as the frame is all one unit). It’s amazing how light it is, even compared to the much newer Quickie Life – titanium makes a massive difference – just a shame about the price! I paid £750 for it, second-hand – about a third of the price they were new. They don’t make it now, which is a pity as it was an extremely simple and effective design. I suggested, in a previous post, that if you came across one in good nick, you could do worse than snap it up. That’s still true, and consumables for this model are still easily available – castors, bearings, and the like – but major components, like axle tubes if you want to change the camber, are hard to come by and not cheap. That’s one element of the design where they rather lost the plot, as the axle tube is also a major frame tube. It need not have been, but there you go…
So that just leaves my Quickie Life. This, as ever, lives in the hall, by the door. As well as being my “going out” chair (fat chance), it’s also my hospital chair, to be taken along with me whenever I’m admitted to hospital – it’ll certainly be going with me when it becomes time for my surgery, and between now and then I need to figure out a way to carry my crutches on it, too. They’ll be essential post amputation (the prospect of which has resumed its former scary status,just when I thought I’d come to terms with it – got to be done, though).
Two 3-foot lengths of plastic tube, hung from the seat handles and secured, at the bottom, to the anti-tip castors so they don’t swing about should do the job. The tricky bit is attaching them to the chair without impairing it’s foldability.
But that’s a job for the weekend – after yesterday I need to rest or I’ll crash.
Watch this space…