Sunday, October 17, 2010

Permobil X850: Most Car-like Wheelchair Ever?

The clip above is from Permobil showcasing their X850 wheelchair.  The interesting thing about this wheelchair is the striking similarities this wheelchair is to a car.  The steering and many of its driving characteristics are essentially the same as a car, albeit on a smaller scale.  There are also headlights, taillights, and turn signals which all happen to be required on European wheelchairs since, in some countries, wheelchairs are classified as vehicles.  Even the commercial Permobil has done for this wheelchair is similar to many car commercials.  Amazing.  Check out the clip and enjoy!

Sunday, October 10, 2010

Rowheel Allows One To "Pull" Instead of "Push" Chair Forward

Wheelchairs have a basic problem because the occupant must push the wheels forward to turn the chair’s wheels, but this action is physically stressful on the anterior deltoid muscles in the shoulder and the triceps and flexor carpi muscles in the arms. Using these smaller and relatively weak muscles can result in muscle and joint pain and degredation, torn rotor cuffs, repetitive stress injury, and carpal tunnel syndrome. Now a new wheelchair, the Rowheel System, uses the much more natural pulling (i.e. rowing) motion to move the chair forward.  More info and images after the jump.

Saturday, October 9, 2010

2011 Toyota Sienna Conversion By BraunAbility

BraunAbility has recently released their conversion for the new 2011 Toyota Sienna.  The latest conversion for this popular vehicle has spawned a new XT conversion that has allowed for additional interior height to allow the wheelchair user to sit at the same eye level as the traditional seated passengers which has traditionally been a difficult achievement in lowered floor minivans.  From the perspective of the wheelchair user driving the Sienna, the lower position offered by the XT conversion will allow the driver to feel more like they are sitting in the vehicle as opposed to sitting on top of the vehicle since the lower position will place the driver's eye level more at the middle of the windshield instead of closer to the top of the it.

Other innovations are the placement of the spare tire, now located in a hidden well under the back of the third row.  This provides a clear and unobstructed cargo area which was not possible with the previous Sienna conversion.  There is also a retractable footrest for the backseat passengers to aide in comfort.  As with all BraunAbility vehicles, there are the traditional rails for tie-downs and the usual features that make this conversion beneficial to its owner.  Personally, I am partial to the Sienna SE conversion that is pictured above.  It is quite a nice looking "Swagger Wagon".