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Thread: 5" to 4" casters

  1. #11
    Senior Member DaleB's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by T4Gimp View Post
    My ZRA2 currently has standard forks with 5x1" casters. The casters are mounted in the bottom hole (not sure why, you can see the marks where my DME once had them mounted in the middle).

    I'm thinking about trying some 4x1.4" FL soft-rolls, based in large part on the recommendations I've read on this forum. I'm still a wheelchair newbie (coming up on 1-year in July), so I just want to make sure I understand the ramifications of this change.

    Changing from 5" to 4" casters will drop my FSH by 0.5" -- is there anything else I need to change? I know I'll need to raise my footrest so it doesn't catch, but will I also need to drop my RSH to maintain my seating position?
    If you don't also move the rear down your backrest angle will be steeper than you are used to, which will change the whole weight distribution and feel. Lowering the rear will alter your push stroke, which could be good or bad, depending on how good it is now. General rule = tips of fingers should hang to the center of the hubs. Also, caster squareness would need to be reset for perfection, but that's not entirely necessary, IMO.

    If you can go to 5" - 4" and also move DOWN one mounting hole in the forks nothing else will need adjusting. This would be ideal, IMO.
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  2. #12
    To switch from 5 to 4 and keep the FSH unchanged, you could also buy 1/2" fork-stem extensions. My AeroZ1:

    Before/stock (6"caster w/o extension):
    Attachment 45506

    After (5" caster w/ 1" extension - raised FSH 1/2"):
    Attachment 45507
    Last edited by chasmengr; 06-27-2012 at 11:15 PM.
    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."
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  3. #13
    Senior Member wtf's Avatar
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    You mean switching from 5 inch to 4 inch and vice versa messes everything (specs) up. I think I need to go to the 5 inch. When I was in my hotel in dallas there was 1-1.5 inch threshold to the bathroom that I couldn't get up in my tilite. The casters hit it and just bounced me back when I took a run at it. On my new chair I think I'm going to go with 5 inch casters, but that means I have to figure out all the other bullshit. This shit still confuses me.

  4. #14
    Quote Originally Posted by wtf View Post
    . . . On my new chair I think I'm going to go with 5 inch casters, but that means I have to figure out all the other bullshit. This shit still confuses me.
    On a new chair, the manufacturer will figure it all out - you need only specify the main stuff. It's only when changing an existing chair that it gets complex. (I suspect that's what grommet ran into with the Icon - he was in charge of setting everything up.)
    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>

  5. #15
    Quote Originally Posted by patd View Post
    I went from 5" to 4" and would never go back! The 5" hung up on my feet so much.
    That is not a caster problem, is a built chair problem, not enough distance from the footrest to the barrel fork stems.



    Quote Originally Posted by Brianm View Post
    FWIW, I plan to go from my 4's to 5's next time.

    Just my .02 cents.
    I did it, softroll 5"x 1.4 give a smother ride outdoors.

  6. #16
    I changed from 5" to 4" last fall on my TR and would not think about going back! One thing that I noticed after I changed to 4" was that I seem to not hit the "A" post (the part of the car between the front of the door opening and the windshield) with the caster when I'm getting my chair in or out of my car. Yes, I do feel the ledges in doorways more but it's not that big of a deal.

    Now for the bad part about my change from 5" to 4".
    I have a TR which means less changes can be made. So when I changed to 4" casters it caused me to tip forward by a 1/2" and because my chair is an early TR is does not have multiple holes in the forks to allow for adjustment. Due to change in angle I started having all sorts of popping sounds coming from my chair and after talking with Tilite it was determined that the popping was the result on the loss of the 1/2" thus causing extra forces / stress on the rear axel tube and rear spokes.
    Last edited by stumpybushman; 07-01-2012 at 01:13 AM.
    SCI Birthday: April 25, 1993
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  7. #17
    Senior Member garyv's Avatar
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    I quit using the smaller wheels a few years back because I had the roller blade wheels on a chair once and hit a small palm berry when I was pushing down the road and on the forward stroke hit the berry , the chair stopped and I ended up iin the middle of the road with a broken leg..
    So I use the 5" soft rolls now with no problems and really smoothe ride.
    I know you where going to the 4" softrolls but just saying that the smaller the front wheel the faster they stop if you even hit a small stone..
    Gary
    T-10 ,,1980,,

  8. #18
    Thanks for all the feedback, everyone! I didn't realize I would have to adjust so much from a simple .5" drop. I'm not really keen on making that many adjustments, so I think I'm going to stick with 5" for now!

  9. #19
    Quote Originally Posted by wtf View Post
    You mean switching from 5 inch to 4 inch and vice versa messes everything (specs) up. I think I need to go to the 5 inch. When I was in my hotel in dallas there was 1-1.5 inch threshold to the bathroom that I couldn't get up in my tilite. The casters hit it and just bounced me back when I took a run at it. On my new chair I think I'm going to go with 5 inch casters, but that means I have to figure out all the other bullshit. This shit still confuses me.
    I know exactly how you feel.

  10. #20
    Senior Member SuprSi's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by T4Gimp View Post
    Thanks for all the feedback, everyone! I didn't realize I would have to adjust so much from a simple .5" drop. I'm not really keen on making that many adjustments, so I think I'm going to stick with 5" for now!
    Sounds like a good choice, I really like the look of those frog leg wheesl too. I went for 4" on my new chair, but the only motivation was I prefer how it looks, and I would only recommend it if you're really good at backwheel ballancing and flicking over obstacles (even relatively small stones can have you out of the chair if you're not looking out for them). It's not so bad if your chair is set up very tippy so there's not so much weight on the front wheels.

    Anyway, thought you might find this useful for your next chair.
    T11 Asia A after near-fatal bike crash.. Just happy to still be here

    No, I didn't loose my mind... It got scared and ran away!!

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