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Thread: The future of titanium wheelchairs?

  1. #51
    Senior Member elarson's Avatar
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    Scott -- Do you use a power add-on? Higher speed is when the vibration seems to come in the most, or at least that is what I have read. We did not have a power add-on when using aluminium, so I don't know.

    And I totally agree about titanium taking a beating. We live in a 450 year old house that has some stone and cement "features" that are bashed into constantly, due to a reduced visual field. Outside it is even worse with curbs, posts, etc. Granted, the frame itself does not always take the full hits directly due to the design, but I have to believe it is taking some heavy stress in ways that are not typical. Any anodized aluminium surfaces like the handrims look like they have been through a crash test. My husband is also a painter, and trying to get paint off of aluminium with powder coat, and even anodized aluminium, is much harder than with titanium, where I can scrape it and then buff it.

    My husband only receives funding every 7 years. Having a chair that will look decent that long is also important on a social level in my opinion. What's the point to get all dressed up to go somewhere when it looks like you are in an old beat-up jalopy? I also think others like taxi drivers, PCA's, etc., treat equipment better if they see it is maintained well. I would really be disappointed if it became harder and more expensive to get a titanium chair that we could not keep up to at least look decent.

    Here are some not so good photo's of the wall that we call the inside dike (live in Holland), and an abused cement corner -- its on the way to the beer !

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    Partner of an incredible stroke survivor. Limitations: hemiparesis and neglect (functional paralysis and complete lack of awareness on one side). Equipment: TiLite ZRA 2 and 2GX, Spinergy ZX-1, RioMobility Firefly. Knowledge: relative newbie for high-level equipment (2012), but willing to try to help others who are new with similar limitations (definitely not a guru, but inquisitive).

  2. #52
    Quote Originally Posted by elarson View Post
    Scott -- Do you use a power add-on? Higher speed is when the vibration seems to come in the most, or at least that is what I have read. We did not have a power add-on when using aluminium, so I don't know.
    Yup. I have a Smartdrive, used on a TR3 with a Freewheel.

    I'm not trying to argue, just noting that I personally don't notice vibration dampening from Ti.

  3. #53
    Senior Member elarson's Avatar
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    Interesting... I did not think you were arguing, and hope you know that I was not trying to argue either. I think it is interesting to hear others take on titanium, because we are fairly new to ultralight titanium chairs compared to may others on the forum. We only had rentals of aluminium chairs, and it's hard to compare without "like" frames/components.

    Quote Originally Posted by -scott- View Post
    Yup. I have a Smartdrive, used on a TR3 with a Freewheel.

    I'm not trying to argue, just noting that I personally don't notice vibration dampening from Ti.
    Partner of an incredible stroke survivor. Limitations: hemiparesis and neglect (functional paralysis and complete lack of awareness on one side). Equipment: TiLite ZRA 2 and 2GX, Spinergy ZX-1, RioMobility Firefly. Knowledge: relative newbie for high-level equipment (2012), but willing to try to help others who are new with similar limitations (definitely not a guru, but inquisitive).

  4. #54
    Quote Originally Posted by -scott- View Post
    Yup. I have a Smartdrive, used on a TR3 with a Freewheel.

    I'm not trying to argue, just noting that I personally don't notice vibration dampening from Ti.
    same here, I don't notice anything. I like it because it holds up better
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  5. #55
    Quote Originally Posted by elarson View Post
    Interesting... I did not think you were arguing, and hope you know that I was not trying to argue either.
    I just didn't intend for my comment to imply that you were wrong. Glad it didn't.

  6. #56
    Senior Member Oddity's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by fuentejps View Post
    same here, I don't notice anything. I like it because it holds up better

    Compared to t6 aluminum this is mostly true. Ti 6al4v scratches quite easily, but has 3x tensile strength of T6 Al. Compared to, say, a far cheaper chrome-moly-bendum steel, not so much. Properly hardened chrome-moly steel (3x tensile strength bump over Ti) kicks both Al and Ti into the dirt. Harder, tougher, and can be used to design a much lighter chair, too! (RGK, Oracing, Panthera, et al, have proven this!)

    "Chromoly steel" just doesn't have the buzz like the word "titanium" brings into the market.

    Maybe ridding the market of "aerospace titanium" buzz would make room for cheaper and better alternatives?

    Too many otherwise bright folks drunk on titanium laced Kool aid!!!! Next to pre-fabrication single heat treated T6 Al titanium seems way better, but that's a crazy low bar to judge a material by!

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  8. #58
    Suspended Andy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Oddity View Post
    Properly hardened chrome-moly steel (3x tensile strength bump over Ti) kicks both Al and Ti into the dirt. Harder, tougher, and can be used to design a much lighter chair, too! (RGK, Oracing, Panthera, et al, have proven this!)?

    )
    This got me curious. Any actual side by side weight comparisons with similar sized and outfitted chairs between Ti and steel? Back when I took my 2nd chair completely apart to replace the frame (Ti), I was surprised that the frame was one of the very lightest parts of the chair.

  9. #59
    Here is a interesting article, not really related to wheelchairs, but the comparison between steel, aluminum, titanium and magnesium. http://cdiichinadirect.wordpress.com...-lillian-wong/ One thing I will say I really like about the Titanium wheelchair I just got is it does ride a lot better than it's Aluminum counterpart. Titanium has built in shock absorbing qualities. I really noticed it tonight on a cobblestone walkway I've done in both chairs in Newport.
    "Life is about how you
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  10. #60
    Quote Originally Posted by Andy View Post
    This got me curious. Any actual side by side weight comparisons with similar sized and outfitted chairs between Ti and steel? Back when I took my 2nd chair completely apart to replace the frame (Ti), I was surprised that the frame was one of the very lightest parts of the chair.
    Yes, the overall weight of a chair is determined more by the components (add-on options), wheels, tires than the frame. Of course, a fully-welded chair (or nearly so) will be lighter than the majority of adjustable chairs, which have more components.

    Now that I'm a new car owner (Mazda5), I'm especially grateful to have an ultra-lightweight chair. I pull the chair into the back fully assembled and to remove the chair, I grip it one-handed by clinching the wheel against the side guard and lower it out. I could not do this with a chair larded up with options.

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