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CUSTOM ADAPTATION PURPOSE: To provide a mobility device that would allow for movement through a family residence (with many obstacles), and be used as a shower chair for person with severe physical disabilities. A mobile chair was created with a plastic seat mounted on a steel chassis with three 250- millimeter (mm) wheels out of alignment. The wheels each have their own running track and their own axle alignment. The chassis is made from a steel bar shaped to suit the three-wheeled design. The stub axles were machined to fit holes drilled in the chassis so the axles could be welded into place from behind the bar and achieve a close fit to the chassis. Having only one wheel in front means that the chair prevents steps from being the obstacle they are to wheelchairs with two small wheels at the front, and attempting stairs was made even easier when the tire pressure was reduced in the front wheel. Once the front wheel goes over the step the other two follow in turn, maintaining stability at all times. A single push handlebar was mounted directly onto the chassis underneath the chair, so the center of effort to push the chair is low down and easier to push and turn with one hand. The seat is angled at 45 degrees to the left rather than straight ahead. This was done to make the device easier to use in the shower; however, it also helped with communication between an individual and his or her caregiver while in the chair. The seat is mounted higher than a standard wheelchair and does not have a footrest. Additional holes were drilled into the seat to assist with water dispersal while in the shower. DIMENSIONS: The steel bar from which the chasis is made is 50 x 6 mm. TITLE: Moving Around the House. JOURNAL: TAD Journal. REF: Volume 28, Number 2, July 2008, p. 14. Pages: 2. (including cover).
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