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Thread: Need advice on first chair

  1. #11
    Quote Originally Posted by chasmengr View Post
    My395 and Cheesecake,


    1) terminology:
    "lightweight" = HCPCS K0004 = temporary use "hospital chair"
    "ultralight" = HCPCS K0005/K0009 = permanent use, custom built
    2) decide if you want a folding or a rigid chair (apples to apples, rigids are lighter because they have fewer components). The choice typically depends on how you need to load the chair in your vehicle.
    3) decide between K0005 and K0009. K0009's are typically lighter, but cost a lot more. Many insurance companies require special justification to buy K0009. (I can stand, load my chair, then hobble to the driver's seat, so a K0005 is fine for me. For those who can't stand and must transfer then lift their chair over themselves into the car, K0009 is worth extra money for less weight.)
    4) be very aware of the "weight game" all wheelchair manufacturers must play to remain in the market. Published wheelchair weights are very misleading to the uninformed - published weights include only a very minimalist chair (sometimes even minus the rear wheels and/or the footrest).
    5) for first-time wheelers, adjustability is very important for fine tuning the fit over the long term. Proper fit is virtually impossible to achieve with your first chair no matter how good you or your DME are at measuring. Adjustable items include rear-seat height (RSH) for fine-tuning propulsion efficiency, front-seat height (FSH) for fine tuning knee and ground clearance, center-of gravity (COG) for fine tuning your balance, and many others.
    6) learn the available options (e.g., frame style, front angle, swing-away or fixed hangers, etc.) and decide what's important to you. Here is where wheeling in a demo chair is very important.
    7) visit manufacturers' websites, download and study chairs' order forms. Search CC for specific answers; ask CC users questions regarding topics you can't find.


    It took me a month of preparation before I knew what I wanted. Picking the right chair is very important. Once you have it, it's yours for the long term, and (unless you have out-of-pocket means) it's very hard to get a different chair for at least five years often longer. Ultralights are custom built for each user; make sure it fits you; be ready for a long lead time (3-6 months if insurance is paying).


    And, like GL said, be very leery of DMEs. You have to buy through one (and they know it) whether you or your insurance company is paying, they typically have hidden agendas, they will quickly lead you down their own best-interest path (profit) if you let them. Know what you want, learn what's available in the industry (not just what the DME has), learn how to measure yourself, be courteously assertive. Use the DME as a resource only because you have to.


    We are here to help, but only you know what's important to you.
    Very well put.

  2. #12
    Quote Originally Posted by cheesecake View Post
    Had considered a Q7 but was told they are having issues of frame breakage with power assist. This would scratch the Aero off my list because if one is splitting, chances are the other will as well.
    Two different chairs, two different companies; I have a friend with an Aero Z and eMotion wheels, he has had it a couple years now with no issues.
    C5-6 Complete - 8/13/1982

  3. #13
    Quote Originally Posted by cheesecake View Post
    Had considered a Q7 but was told they are having issues of frame breakage with power assist.
    I found this to be very intriguing, so I went surfing. Look what I found:

    Attachment 37338
    Attachment 37339
    Last edited by chasmengr; 10-21-2010 at 08:50 AM.
    Chas
    TiLite TR3
    Dual-Axle TR3 with RioMobility DragonFly
    I am a person with mild/moderate hexaparesis (impaired movement in 4 limbs, head, & torso) caused by RRMS w/TM C7&T7 incomplete.

    "I know you think you understand what you thought I said, but what I don't think you realize is that what you heard is not what I meant."
    <
    UNKNOWN AUTHOR>

  4. #14
    Since you are walking, I suggest a flip back foot rest so you can have a better positioning for standing up without sacrificing the performance elements of a rigid:

    http://estore.tilite.com/ecommerce/C...=811&IID=17317

  5. #15
    Quote Originally Posted by radio_buddha View Post
    Since you are walking, I suggest a flip back foot rest so you can have a better positioning for standing up without sacrificing the performance elements of a rigid:

    http://estore.tilite.com/ecommerce/C...=811&IID=17317
    Thanks, is what I argued for yesterday vs. swing away. Sitting in a chair will tell me if and how well it will work.
    Every day I wake up is a good one

  6. #16
    Quote Originally Posted by My395 View Post
    Thanks for the advice everyone. I am reading it all. And it is good to see others working through the same issues.

    Went to the docs today and got the order for a chair. Doctor knew just what I am looking for and said he would right up whatever was needed on his part. They are putting in the initial call for approval.

    I am looking for an adjustable chair since is my first and that will let me get it "tuned".

    Definitely will have a footrest as my legs do not work good enough to pull me along.

    If I end up feeling something like a Tilite titanium is what I want, and insurance won't approve it, is there a way for me to pay the difference?
    I think a lot of people would agree that aluminum is becoming way more popular over titanium for wheelchair construction. Perhaps my own research is incorrect but the weight savings using Ti over steel is minimal but with much more expense. A well designed aluminum chair typically weighs less than Ti. Just more food for thought. A lot of good explanations regarding aluminum construction can be found on the thread on Equipment page 1 titled something like "anyone know the name of the lightweight chair built in Kentucky?" Good luck.

  7. #17
    Quote Originally Posted by roller View Post
    I think a lot of people would agree that aluminum is becoming way more popular over titanium for wheelchair construction.
    Saying Al is "way more popular over titanium" would be incorrect. AL is way more likely to be reimbursed than Ti, therefore more Al chairs are produced and sold.

  8. #18
    Quote Originally Posted by SCI_OTR View Post
    Saying Al is "way more popular over titanium" would be incorrect. AL is way more likely to be reimbursed than Ti, therefore more Al chairs are produced and sold.
    agreed
    C5/C6 Complete since 08/22/09

  9. #19
    Quote Originally Posted by BobMach View Post
    i would suggest a highly adjustable LIGHT WEIGHT chair such as a Marvel M1 or a Invacare A4 with 85 degree front angle. with a adjustable chair you can change your settings/adjustments until you find your sweet spots on width, center of gravity, back rest angles, front seat and rear seat heights, etc and with the Marvel overall chair length. if you get fitted incorrectly with a non adjustable chair from a DME, ur stuck with it. with a adjustable first chair you will learn over time your own measurements for when that time comes to order a non adjustable chair. folding chairs have more moving parts and tend not to last as long as a rigid. rigids are boxer but can still be easily transferred into a car or trunk. the Marvel also breaks down easily and fit nicely into a small trunk. you will get alot of suggestions here on this site so listen to all........good luck
    A Marvel! An A4

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