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Thread: Question for people driving from a manual chair

  1. #1

    Question for people driving from a manual chair

    I'm a C5 complete and I'm in the process of getting a van modified with hand controls. It appears that the only viable lockdown mechanism is the EZ-lock. I'm in an Invacare A4 that I'm very pleased with. However, EZ-lock does not make a bracket for this chair. So a machinist friend and I got together and made one that I've been using for years now on the passenger side. My van dealer refuses to use my bracket since it wasn't supplied by EZ-lock. He's telling me I have to get another chair that has a bracket available from EZ-lock (basically, a box frame design) and that this chair will need to have a split foot rest to accommodate the front stabilizer on the EZ-lock bracket. My questions are:

    1. Are there any options other than the EZ-lock?
    2. Is anyone out there driving with an EZ-lock bracket of their own design?
    3. Is anyone out there driving with an EZ-lock bracket and a solid foot rest?


    (I checked with EZ-lock and they are not going to develop a mounting bracket for the Invacare A4).

    Thanks in advance,

    Dan

  2. #2
    Senior Member
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    How are your transfers? I have a close friend who's also C5 and he transfers into Captain's chair. I think it's much safer to drive from there versus your chair, so it's just food for thought.

    Whatever you decide to do, good luck. You'll be elated when you're up and running.
    Rollin' since '89. Complete C8

  3. #3
    Can't transfer - tried for years and just don't have the strength in my shoulders.

  4. #4
    Senior Member smokey's Avatar
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    There are a couple other options out there but they are pretty much the same (PermaLock, QLK-150). As you know, you need a box frame chair to attach the brackets. Ya it sucks because it's 12lbs. of steel slapped onto your manuel chair. You cannot simply use wheelchair tie down straps if you are driving. I've been sniffing around for many years looking for something better, lighter, cheaper and yet still safe.

    These conversion dealers must follow the guidelines of the National Mobility Equipment Dealers Association (NMEDA), Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standards (FMVSS) and the Adaptive Driving Alliance (ADA). The liability would be tremendous otherwise. That's why they won't "make something" at the shop to be less clunky. It has to be tested and approved by other consumer groups and so on.

    I wish I had better news but that's how it is today. Hopefully before I "shuffle off my mortal coil" there will be a better option for those of us that drive from our wheelchairs.

  5. #5
    Senior Member goldnucs's Avatar
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    I actually had the fabricator in my shop machine me up one for my Ti. I used aluminum and a hardened steel bolt and it adds about 6 lbs to my chair. Works great and has for years. I was even in a pretty serious driving accident some years back in which the stresses on my tie-down had to be incredibly fierce; didn't so much as scratch or bend it. If I could invent it I'm sure that eZ-lock and others could build them even better....if they wanted to. As owner of GO! Mobility Solutions, I am well-versed in product liability issues and, frankly, I don't see what the big deal is.
    Rick Goldstein
    GO! Mobility Solutions
    facebook.com/goes.anywhere

  6. #6
    Yeah, I'm pretty proud of the one I designed for my A4 as well. I guess I'll let the van guy put me in whatever he has to and then I'll just readjust everything to work with my A4 on my own!

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by wddamf View Post
    Yeah, I'm pretty proud of the one I designed for my A4 as well. I guess I'll let the van guy put me in whatever he has to and then I'll just readjust everything to work with my A4 on my own!

    I would go along with this or just installed the ez lock your self
    C5 as of 6-13- 2010

  8. #8
    Senior Member smokey's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by goldnucs View Post
    I actually had the fabricator in my shop machine me up one for my Ti. I used aluminum and a hardened steel bolt and it adds about 6 lbs to my chair. Works great and has for years. I was even in a pretty serious driving accident some years back in which the stresses on my tie-down had to be incredibly fierce; didn't so much as scratch or bend it. If I could invent it I'm sure that eZ-lock and others could build them even better....if they wanted to. As owner of GO! Mobility Solutions, I am well-versed in product liability issues and, frankly, I don't see what the big deal is.
    Goldnucs, can you show us a close up pic of your lock down component? Thanks.

  9. #9
    I am guessing you must do what the dealer (he has to cover has butt) says if someone else is paying but then I would bypass all his crap and have your friend install the one you have been using on the passenger side on the drivers side. With my first van I did just that and boxed the useless parts up and mailed them to DARS home office in Texas, but thats just me.
    Life's perceived journey in this PMR is not to arrive at the grave safely in a well preserved body, but rather to skid in sideways, totally worn out, shouting "holy **** what a VR ride!"
    Pete C6/'97

  10. #10
    Oracing built my frame with a 2x 4" aluminum plate to hold my EZ Lock bolt. My footrest is solid.

    The EZ Lock manual gives you dimensions from floor to footrest clearance. If you want your footrest lower than the clearance height. Simply Velcro two flat planks to the van floor. One under each castor to raise your front end so that your footrest clears the base according to your needs.

    Junkyarddog made a smart, removable tray to fit under his Terminator and it looks great. The A4 frame is similar to the Terminator. I think that his attachments are missing on the CareCure website.
    Last edited by gps; 04-13-2014 at 12:37 AM.

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