Page 2 of 9 FirstFirst 123456789 LastLast
Results 11 to 20 of 86

Thread: Is a ZRA worth the additional out of pocket cost over a AeroZ?

  1. #11
    Quote Originally Posted by funklab View Post
    Holy Jesus, am I reading that right, $2,000 plus for the brakes!

    Wow... just... wow...
    Yep, they're really pricey. They're bicycle brakes with custom mods & hardware to work on wheelchairs: invented and manufactured by a WC user.

    Here's a CCC post with pics.
    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>

  2. #12
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Dec 2011
    Location
    San Francisco Bay Area
    Posts
    144
    Phew, that was a lot of additional feedback! Let's see...

    Quote Originally Posted by chasmengr View Post
    IMO If you load your chair by disassembling it and lifting into your car over yourself with your shoulders, low weight is HUGE, and worth the extra cost.
    Quote Originally Posted by Kristopher View Post
    I believe titanium is worth it not only for the weight but also the strength. My aluminum chairs did not hold up to my active lifestyle and constant in and out of vehicles.
    Quote Originally Posted by nonoise View Post
    You've got the added problem of corrosion with aluminum if they use salt. That would drain me.
    These points all make a pretty compelling argument to go titanium... I try to minimize how many times I have to get in and out of my car in between points, simply because I find the entering/exiting process tedious. On the aluminum corrosion point, I had no idea salt/seawater had that effect on aluminum as well. I live in SF proper, so I'm surrounded by the sea on all sides: would the air/rain/fog actually carry enough of that salt to cause corrosion? I mean, I guess it happens with the Bay Bridge, so...

    Quote Originally Posted by chasmengr View Post
    The disc brakes are top of the line - they're the only true wheelchair brakes available, made by ADI; all others are locks (including SureLocks). (Brakes control speed and direction while you're moving; locks keep you from moving when you're stopped.) Frankly I'm quite surprised insurance approved them (BTW they're heavier than locks.)
    Quote Originally Posted by nonoise View Post
    Those LX's have the same bearings as less expensive Spinergys. All you get is less spokes (people may say your brakes will rock because of it) and holes in the hub and a little less weight.
    Oh so this is actually a completely different system then! I was thinking it was the Surelocks, since that's what I had mentioned to the dealer. Is the dual level the order mentions the variable lever, or the para lever? Any idea how much heavier the ADI ones are compared to the Surelocks? And if insurance is actually covering it, is it worth getting instead? I guess at 30% it'd still be $600 vs $180 or so.

    Also, is the rocking issue only one that happens with the LXs and the ADI system, or is it the LX and any disc brake system? By rocking I'm assuming you guys mean that, even when locked, there's still some give because of spoke flex? Do the SPOX ones not exhibit this issue since they have more spokes? That said, if the only difference between those two Spinergys is spoke count, I might as well put the extra $200 into something else!

    Quote Originally Posted by chasmengr View Post
    Regarding the add-ons insurance won't cover, here's my opinion FWIW:
    - titanium backrest provides very little weight saving, but it's color will match the frame.
    - titanium back release has no benefit.
    - CF camber tube is not durable when rubbed or impacted. If you're rough with your chair, it won't last. (It IS light.)
    - titanium forks stems are a must on a titanium frame. Not so much on an aluminum frame.
    - titanium QR axles are typically a waste: they're heavier than SS. However if you live very near saltwater (salty air), they'll last indefinitely.
    - Schwalbe MPE are the best pneumatic tire available for flat protection. They roll well. I love mine (on my 2nd set). All pneumatics require more attention than solids.
    - Users either love or hate Surges. I love mine. They provide me substantial grip when ascending hills. If you can, try them before you buy.
    - someday, consider a solid backrest.

    Another note: I've read bad reviews of TiLite's CF side guards (tire rubbing, too flexible). Consider an aftermarket replacement for CF guards like ADI or CarboLife.
    Would it be correct to surmise that the motivation for these points is: all the points that are heavily stressed (frame, stems, camber tube) are worth the titanium upgrade, while things that aren't subject to much abuse aren't? So, as an alternative then, you'd suggest sticking with aluminum for the backrest and back release, and titanium for the camber instead? For the QR axles, as mentioned above, I'm unsure if SF saltwater is enough to wreak havoc on SS.

    What's the motivation for a solid backrest over the fabric one? It'd be nice in the sense that it wouldn't sag as mine has from years of hanging a heavy backpack, but otherwise, I'm not sure what the more salient points are. And what would ya folks recommend?

    And, given the fragility you guys have mentioned about CF, wouldn't it make more sense to NOT get CF sideguards, since they'll probably be subject to rubbing?

  3. #13
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Aug 2012
    Location
    Pennsylvania
    Posts
    1,813
    Weight differential is gigantic. Look at overall weight of chair and then compare percentage change.. You will see a FAR BIGGER number that 2 lbs. That number for chas is smaller because of the add-ons. As for insurance, my Medicare will not cover titanium frame. They do pay for aluminum. My vendor does whatever work required to breakout the upgrades I must pay for because insurance will not cover. Some vendors simply will not do this work and tell you complete chair is not covered. It is ridiculous how this works. If you are intelligent about the wheelchair and the construction of it, be sure to use this to your advantage when talking with vendor. They assume they know more than you. Show your intelligence. It will scare them. If they act like idiots, I suggest different vendor.

  4. #14
    Senior Member elarson's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2012
    Location
    The Netherlands
    Posts
    2,228
    We went through some similar considerations when configuring my husbands chair. About your original question about the titanium frame, the AeroZ in titanium is in effect a ZRA. They did it that way because Medicaid removed HCPCS code K0009 which is what the ZRA was previously coded as (see this article if you are interested Ultralight Update: The Demise of K0009). It's unfortunate, because the upgrade to the AeroZ is a lot more expensive than a ZRA. Sometimes you can get insurance to pickup the extra cost for titanium if you have medical justification.My husband gets seizures and spasms from vibration, and we think the titanium absorbs that better, but have no proof of that.

    We think the titanium was worth it also because my husband beats the crap out of his chair and along with being a painter and needing to scrape paint off it, we think the titanium is much easier to keep looking decent. He also uses power add-ons (ZX-1 and RioMobility Firefly) and has a reinforced frame, which I believe is stronger than a a aluminium reinforced frame. I am not quite sure because TiLite has never answered my questions about what exactly is included with a reinforced frame.

    We went with the folding titanium adjustable height back, because we wanted it to match the frame and not get beatup.That was mostly an aesthetic decision, because I'm not sure if the back really needs the extra strength of titanium. The weight difference is insignificant -- here is a post about that weight of Tilite alumunum Vs titanium backrest. We have the aluminum Tishaft back release bar. For the extra $65, I wish we would have gone with titanium, because it's really banged up after 1 1/2 year, but that is partially due to his ZX-1 hitting it.

    We considered ADI disc brakes, but decided against them and got D's Locks instead, and are very happy with them. We did not want what was needed with the Camber Tube Modify or the Spline Drive Insert to the Spinergy LX's. I also felt that I would bang them up a lot trying to get the chair in/out of the car and have to do too much maintenance. The rocking issue happens with the Spinergy Spox and LXs because of the PBO spokes, and happens with ADI disc brakes, SureLocks and D's Locks. My husband does not have a big problem with the rocking, once he got used to it. My husband needed one hand ability to lock and did not really need the disc braking capability. We live in flat Holland, so I am assuming that hilly SF is your reason behind that choice.

    Another reason we did not want the modifications for ADI disc brakes is that we also were not covered for everything and we wanted backup components. We went with the standard TiLite Out-Front Shadow wheels, rims and Primo tires and ordered Spinergy LX wheels, an extra axle, Schwalbe MPE tires, and the Surge LT handrims separately online. It's much cheaper than ordering them from a dealer and through TiLite (in the US you can save about 30% buying them online, and in our case we saved about 50%). Now if my husband has a flat and if I don't have time or too lazy to fix it (like this weekend) we can swap to his Shadow wheels temporarily. There is a rather long thread about it here if you are interested Replacing TiLite Shadow wheels with Spinergy LX's. My husband likes the Surge LT's but they are getting pretty beat up in 1.5 years, and possibly we would consider titanium for the next set.

    I agree with Nonoise and Chasmengr about the carbon fiber camber tube not being worth it. My husband uses a ZX-1, but we have a titanium camber tube, which I "think" was worth the extra money, and it looks good too. Here is a post with some comments about camber tubes with the ZX-1 Camber tube failure using ZX1 In that post the inventor pattherat of the ZX-1 suggests either a titanium or carbon fiber camber tube. I think that t8burst now has a ZX-1 that is used with a carbon fiber camber tube and can give more input.

    We do not have titanium forks stems. I had not even realized it was an option and just went to look at it (see this link in the parts store for titanium CP104372 and this for aluminium CP104292). I'm not quite sure why Chasemgr says they are "a must on a titanium frame", because you can't even see them. However, it may help with corrosion from saltwater (salty air), and they may be stronger. I would not mind having them because the forks really take a beating when using the ZX-1 add-on, but I'm not sure they are worth $50.

    The titanium quick release axels are a huge upcharge. If corrosion is a big concern, I would consider getting them aftermarket and go with the stainless steel when ordering the chair. This was a good post by Andy My Invacare/Top End titanium axle review (they were for a TiLite) and he got them from Bike-On and there are also some at Sportaiid Titanium Quick Release Axles for $110.00.

    I agree with what Chasemgr said about TiLite's carbon fiber side guards and considering an aftermarket replacement like ADI or CarboLife. We have ADI carbon fiber folding sideguards that were cut to a template we provided, and I'm quite sure the CarboLife can be adjusted too. On the other hand, if you got insurance to cover them, they may be worth it, because the cost of all of them are quite high.

    I hope I did not go on for too long. I'm putting off having to fix the slow leak on my husband's chair. I don't have any spare tubes and am trying to decide if it is worth trying to repair it or just wait to order new tubes.
    Last edited by elarson; 01-24-2015 at 03:58 PM.
    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).

  5. #15
    First of i want to say i never had a ZRA or a AeroZ therefore i can't say much about the chair itself but i can share my opinion on weight and CF/Materials.
    I have a lot of experience with my measurements (which i do myself!) in combination with material i use in my chairs i personally always go with the lightest materials available, my folding chair is just 110 grams lighter then my folder i have previously used and i tell you with both chair having the exact same measurements and parts i used to have on both of them i can tell you even with the smallest weight saving it does make an enormous difference on my shoulders before i had problems thats why i made the switch to the new one (110 grams lighter) and now with the new one no shoulder problems whatsoever! (pushing/loading it into a car) i do feel the lighter frame while pushing.
    i do mostly agree with chasmengr post above about the titanium parts but i personally never had the chance to order titanium parts because quickie doesn't offer them but i did research on them in the past when i did consider getting a tilite so i know a little about them.
    I find CF parts very good and worth the money (i only use CF on my side guards) but i would not use CF as a material on a camber tube just like chasmengr said it CF doesn't like rubbing or impact.
    Current Wheelchairs: Sopur Helium aka Quickie Q7 (lightest spec) rigid frame with Spinergy Spox Wheels
    Sopur Xenon same frame as the Q7 (lightest spec) folding frame With Spinergy LX (custom)

  6. #16
    Quote Originally Posted by chasmengr View Post
    Yep, they're really pricey. They're bicycle brakes with custom mods & hardware to work on wheelchairs: invented and manufactured by a WC user.

    Here's a CCC post with pics.
    They're still REALLY expensive. Here's the bike version w/o the ADI mods:

    http://www.jensonusa.com/!uC3i2Sjl1l...cal-Disc-Brake

  7. #17
    SF air/rain/fog should not cause the dissimilar metal galvanic action that aluminum is subject to unless you got caught in salt spray. Deicing chemicals that splash off tires can start the process and even rust steel axles.

    If I went with hub locks, I'd go with D's. I don't want to add the tiny bit of width to my chair though. I meet the D's owner at Expo and chatted with him for quite some time. He appears to be very approachable and friendly. It looks like an excellent product that I have not used.

    But when locking the hub instead of the tire, the chair will move a little. People say it is the spokes flexing, and that is why I said if you up your spoke count it should reduce the flex. LX's have a better appearance than Spox so that is where they get you. You have to pay extra for a black hub with a Spox.

    You have not mentioned color. The motivation I would have for titanium is it's indestructible natural finish. I said that wrong. It can be brought back to new condition without too much effort whereas aluminum has to be repainted. I have first hand experience bringing a basket case A4 titanium back to near new condition. Incidentally, that A4 is not a light chair. The fittings and brackets are steel.

    I don't know why Chas suggested a solid backrest since you did not mention any discomfort or stability issue. Mine is cloth.

    Do you even need side guards? I used to be on a quest for cheap used side guards for my Q2 folder but gave up. My pants have only gotten wet from the wheels a few times. Maybe side guards would be useful for my gardening chair, hadn't thought about that before now. So the point is though do your legs rub up against your wheels? If so, you need a sturdy guard. The one I like is on my Crossfire, but I never use it and cannot find how to order it. It has two attachment points on each rail and folds back to the backrest when collapsed.
    Last edited by nonoise; 01-24-2015 at 08:20 PM.
    I have had periodic paralysis all my life. I lost my ability to walk in 2011 beginning with a spinal block, which was used for a hip fracture caused by periodic paralysis.

  8. #18
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Dec 2011
    Location
    San Francisco Bay Area
    Posts
    144
    Quote Originally Posted by rlmtrhmiles View Post
    My vendor does whatever work required to breakout the upgrades I must pay for because insurance will not cover.
    Yeah, my vendor/dealer was actually the one who mentioned to me that breaking out titanium as an optional upgrade I could pay for myself was possible. I totally thought it was a whole chair or nothing deal at first.

    Quote Originally Posted by elarson View Post
    Sometimes you can get insurance to pickup the extra cost for titanium if you have medical justification.
    Yeah, I was trying to justify titanium to insurance by arguing I needed a lighter chair to get around SF hills + car transfers, but I guess that wasn't good enough :/

    Quote Originally Posted by elarson View Post
    We did not want what was needed with the Camber Tube Modify or the Spline Drive Insert to the Spinergy LX's... My husband needed one hand ability to lock and did not really need the disc braking capability. We live in flat Holland, so I am assuming that hilly SF is your reason behind that choice.
    Oh, I didn't realize the ADI brakes required modification of the camber tube. That's even more of a downsell then, because if I ever replaced the camber tube, I'd have to have them modify it again wouldn't I? And actually, I really only wanted the locking ability: braking doesn't really matter as much to me, since I tend to go down hills at almost full speed, and just slow down manually (I wear thick gloves). But, all that said, it sounds like I should just stick with the Surelocks or D's instead. It'll be rather silly if insurance will cover the ADIs but not the two cheaper options...

    Quote Originally Posted by elarson View Post
    It's much cheaper than ordering them from a dealer and through TiLite (in the US you can save about 30% buying them online, and in our case we saved about 50%)... There is a rather long thread about it here if you are interested Replacing TiLite Shadow wheels with Spinergy LX's. My husband likes the Surge LT's but they are getting pretty beat up in 1.5 years, and possibly we would consider titanium for the next set.
    For some reason the thought of buying the uncovered parts of my own didn't even occur to me. I just looked up the cost of buying the LXs, MPEs, and Surge LT on Sportaid, and it'll save me almost a whopping $500. I'm guessing those are the only things I can acquire elsewhere right? The other upgrades all seem specific to Tilite and the frame.

    Thanks for that thread as well though, because now I know I need to let Tilite know I'll still be using Spinergy wheels so they can build the chair for those specifically. Having backup parts IS awfully tempting though, but at 30%, that's still probably a couple hundred extra.

    Also, why'd you guys go with the Surge LT over the regular Surge? I just looked again and realized the LT ones are a little shorter in vertical height, but I'm wondering if my hands (which are fairly large) would actually be better suited to the regular Surges instead.

    Quote Originally Posted by elarson View Post
    We do not have titanium forks stems. I had not even realized it was an option and just went to look at it (see this link in the parts store for titanium CP104372 and this for aluminium CP104292). I'm not quite sure why Chasemgr says they are "a must on a titanium frame", because you can't even see them. However, it may help with corrosion from saltwater (salty air), and they may be stronger.
    I suspect corrosion as well - if you look at the stems on my Revolution right now, they're a lovely shade of rust red right now, so...

    Quote Originally Posted by elarson View Post
    I hope I did not go on for too long.
    Not at all, that was a lot of really useful info, thank you!

    Quote Originally Posted by Darkrider View Post
    (i only use CF on my side guards) but i would not use CF as a material on a camber tube just like chasmengr said it CF doesn't like rubbing or impact.
    Quote Originally Posted by nonoise View Post
    Do you even need side guards?
    My legs don't touch the wheels: the side guards are almost solely for the purpose of keeping my clothes from getting dirty. Without them, I find that my pants and shirts rub against the wheels and pick up dirt/mud/grime streaks on them (I only have about an inch or two of space between my hips and the edge of my cushion). They serve a nice secondary purpose in that they do kind of hold stuff I place up against them sometimes, like a phone or water bottle...

    I'm too lazy to take a photo of this right now, but my concern with side guard durability is because the current plastic guards I have on my Revolution (and the Quickie I had before) have all snapped and cracked around the metal stems, and also have been worn down where they've rubbed against the wheels. This happened because the metal brackets weren't tight enough to completely immobilize them, so I'd have to manually readjust them from time to time (which also led to the aforementioned cracking). So, that said, it doesn't seem like CF is a good option here, given it's fragility, right?

    Quote Originally Posted by nonoise View Post
    If I went with hub locks, I'd go with D's. I don't want to add the tiny bit of width to my chair though.
    I just read in another thread that the Surelocks don't add any width to the chair either, but is that not the case?

    Also, in looking up the SPOX wheels instead, I realized that both the SPOX and LXs all have a standard and sport hub version. What's the difference?

  9. #19
    Senior Member elarson's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2012
    Location
    The Netherlands
    Posts
    2,228
    Quote Originally Posted by faji_tama View Post
    Yeah, I was trying to justify titanium to insurance by arguing I needed a lighter chair to get around SF hills + car transfers, but I guess that wasn't good enough :/
    From my limited knowledge of insurance and Medicaid in the US, coverage is only based on justification for what is done in the home, e.g., not in the community or around the home.
    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).

  10. #20
    Am i reading this right they won't cover the basic parts it takes to actually make the chair? Ie wheels forks rigidizer bar backrest and such
    T6 Incomplete due to a Spinal cord infarction July 2009

Similar Threads

  1. How much does physical therapy cost out of pocket?
    By indecision in forum Exercise & Recovery
    Replies: 15
    Last Post: 04-06-2013, 03:04 PM
  2. Are frog legs worth the cost?
    By t8burst in forum Equipment
    Replies: 32
    Last Post: 09-07-2010, 11:41 PM
  3. Replies: 6
    Last Post: 08-29-2006, 07:13 PM
  4. Replies: 17
    Last Post: 05-18-2002, 08:05 PM
  5. Replies: 12
    Last Post: 12-05-2001, 07:03 AM

Tags for this Thread

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •