The trouble with mobility scooters is…

…disinformation and bigotry.

On May 2, the Guardian published an article, by Amelia Gentleman, called The trouble with mobility scooters.

I took exception to some of the content, and on Twitter I expressed the opinion that I expected better of Ms. Gentleman. The result, after an exchange of tweets with Ms. Gentleman, which Twitter, in its usual inept way, has lost/deleted, is what follows – somewhat delayed, I’m afraid, but it’s been a bad week health-wise. For that reason, too, it’s not my best work. Sorry about that, but not a lot I can do.

There’s much I didn’t respond to in the original, but that’s because Continue reading

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A word of warning for those with ME/CFS – don’t get too ambitious…

You’d think I’d know, after 26 years, that I can’t take liberties with my ME/CFS, not to mention all the new, heart-related, crap. Yeah, right!

The thing is, I’ve been wanting to make sausages for a few years now, but hadn’t been able to put together the two consecutive good days it needed (yes, IDS, that’s what being chronically sick means out here in the real world, you lying sack of shit!).

I first wrote about it on March 23, 2008 and I’ve only just been able to do it, and then only by saying bugger it, and getting stuck in, regardless of whether it was a good day or not.

So, last Tuesday, Continue reading

Discriminating against the disabled in the supported housing sector, Part 2

Back in February, I wrote “Discriminating against the disabled in the supported housing sector…” in which I described the attempt by Riverside ECHG Housing Association to force its disabled tenants to insure their mobility scooters (insurance for which there is currently no legal requirement), as property was being damaged by scooters. I disputed this at length, pointing out that it was blatant discrimination, as many other people could, and do, cause damage, as I’ll show you Continue reading

Getting to grips with wheel removal…

…especially on mobility scooters and powerchairs.

If, like me, you can’t kneel yet there are a lot of times when being able to would be very useful, then I might have at least a partial solution. This is particularly important for those of us who have to maintain our own powerchairs and scooters.

The problem with scooters and powerchairs is that the wheels are Continue reading

Discriminating against the disabled in the supported housing sector…

As some of you will know, I’ve lived in sheltered (which we now have to call supported!), accommodation since my early fifties. During that time I have had a series of powerchairs and scooters, which I have used perfectly safely, and without gouging lumps out of the building.

Now, though, some genius at Riverside ECHG (housing association), has decided that all scooters must be insured. This, somewhat modified, is my response to their request for feedback (yes, I know it’s a lazy way of generating a blog post – I’m still pretty sick).

As I pointed out – at considerable length – when Continue reading

Mobility scooter lights…

Updated version. (Later, October 18, a pic, showing the lights fitted, has been added at the end of the text.)

I haven’t been out much on my new (earlier this year), Sterling Diamond Class 3 scooter, and I really must make the effort. I don’t know why I’m so reluctant** – over the years I’ve travelled many miles on scooters or powerchairs, with no problems.

**Constantly feeling like hammered shit doesn’t help.

So, as winter’s coming, I’ve treated myself to a set of decent front lights.

The scooter has excellent rear lights, and indicators (now I’ve snipped the insanely loud beeper out of the circuit), but the front lights are more of the glow-worm in a jam-jar type. OK for being seen, I suppose, but they do bugger all to light up the road, just casting a yellow glow a couple of feet in front – useless.

(Update, October 14:- The lights are received, fitted, and are great – very bright indoors, in my dark bedroom. My scooter has a tiller with tubular “handlebars”** – you would need to substantially modify the mounting system to fit any other style of tiller, which is true for most lights intended for bikes. There is enough slack in the Y-shaped wiring yoke to fit one lamp either side of the tiller head. The foam grip needed few layers of duct tape to bring it up to the necessary diameter, the alternative being to remove a section and use the thicker rubber clamp liners (shown in the pic, below), which might still have needed taping; this was tidier, and avoids scratching the paint and letting in rust. Amendments have been made to the following text where needed.)

**The forward and reverse wig-wag is operated by the fingers – far more comfy and ergonomically sound than the thumb-operated type – worth thinking about if you’re shopping for a scooter.

Around the turn of the century, I had Continue reading

Mobility scooters and staying warm…

Not done this for a long time, because nothing new has appeared, but this is from my search-engine slush pile – “warm covers for disabled scooters”.

Only one sensible answer – don’t even think about it!

A variety of voluminous, often fleece-lined “garments” are available to cover both rider and machine, and all Continue reading

Mobility scooter range and speed monitoring…

I think I’ve mentioned this in passing, previously, but it’s probably worth going into it in more detail, especially as satnav prices are plummeting.

Scooters, for the most part, give you no speed and distance info, just a battery gauge. OK, that’s useful, but what’s more useful is time, speed and distance data – especially distance, as you never get the claimed range and it’s very useful to find out exactly what you are getting – this is where satnav units are invaluable.

I have a Garmin StreetPilot c310, about six years old, and it will either display Continue reading

Mobility scooter shopping list holder…

In supermarkets, the shopping list can be a real pain. You need one hand to guide the scooter, one to pick things from the shelf, and a third to hold the list. Of course, if you only have one arm you’re already at a disadvantage. There had to be an easier way

First of all, I thought about a cyclists’ map holder, but they’re just too big and too expensive, and wouldn’t fit all scooters, so I came up with this Continue reading

Getting a scooter through an awkward doorway…

If you have difficulty getting a scooter into your home, without knocking lumps out of a doorway or the scooter, this might help.

As regular readers probably know by now, I have a Class 3 scooter – a Sunrise Medical Sterling Diamond (Taiwan’s finest!). Because of illness and poor weather (good days seemed always to coincide with wet ones), last Friday was the first time I’ve been able to use it, three months after buying it.

A 7-mile round trip resulted in my scooter having Continue reading