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Thread: Titanium vs Aluminium.

  1. #11
    i prefer titanium just because its strong, i might not need it but its there if i do, less metal used for the same strength as a aluminum chair, matches the metal work in my back :P i have the satin finish on my chair and it still looks new, i got the tr3 but you can still adjust it, like the c.o.g, seat angle and height if you order it, only thing i would like to try is the dump but i can loosen the seat canvas to give a similar effect

  2. #12
    Senior Member tarheelandy's Avatar
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    "matches the metal work in my back"

  3. #13
    You don't have to paint aluminum...leave it bare and it can be polished/scuffed just like Ti. My bare aluminum oracing looks identical to the day it came out of the box except the front tubes are polished from my hands during transfers. I am not easy on my equipment either.
    T4 Complete since 01/01/2012

  4. #14
    Thankyou, all good advice especially QTiPI's point about considering whether my physical shape or needs might change over time.

    I will give it more time, if I can be as near 100% certain of my measurements then I will go for a Tilite TR. I wonder whether the lower frame tube that supports the camber bar would act as a sort of leaf spring and thus cushion some of the jolts that might otherwise be transmitted up vertical axle struts? Just a thought...


    There good chair manufactures in the UK, and being a patriot I would prefer to buy British. But I especially like the EZ-Ti system, the chair width calculator, and CAD drawing of proposed chair. I wouldn't just trust wheelchair sales rep, I would want to certain in my own mind regarding the chair's proprtions.
    Last edited by Creaking Gate; 06-10-2015 at 02:01 PM. Reason: leaf spring thought added

  5. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by Creaking Gate View Post
    I wonder whether the lower frame tube that supports the camber bar would act as a sort of leaf spring and thus cushion some of the jolts that might otherwise be transmitted up vertical axle struts? Just a thought...
    I think the answer to your question is "no," not in any real way you can feel. I have both a TR3 and a new ZR. The lower frame tube on the TR is very stiff. I feel no isolating effects from mounting the camber tube this way. Actually, the ZR smooths out jolts better. It does have pneumatic tires filled to 130psi though. The TR has solids. My ZR is a heaver chair, so that may also help. I do know that a rear wheel suspension system will make things much smoother. Combined this with front fork suspension and softroll casters, and you will glide right over life's little annoying rough patches.

  6. #16
    Quote Originally Posted by ala View Post
    I think the answer to your question is "no," not in any real way you can feel. I have both a TR3 and a new ZR. The lower frame tube on the TR is very stiff. I feel no isolating effects from mounting the camber tube this way.
    Thankyou, it was just a thought I had. For me personally if anything it's the jolts transmitted through the castors and thus footplate that grief rather that than the jolts transmitted through the seat. I've got 5"x1" solid poly castors, do the castors with a rubber-like tyre give more cushioning?

    Also I'd be interested in your opinion (in regards to rolling resistance) between the open frame ZR and box frame TR? I would think that the different characteristics between the pneumatic and solid tyres makes direct comparison difficult. Have you ever had at one time the same type of tyre on both chairs?

  7. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by Creaking Gate View Post
    Thankyou, it was just a thought I had. For me personally if anything it's the jolts transmitted through the castors and thus footplate that grief rather that than the jolts transmitted through the seat. I've got 5"x1" solid poly castors, do the castors with a rubber-like tyre give more cushioning?
    (I'll butt in since I'm here.)

    Yes. A lot of folks here are big fans of Frog Legs Soft Roll castors, they give a much softer ride (but your solid poly ones will probably perform noticeably better on carpet). There are also suspension forks, Frog Legs again makes them and TiLite has its own version. They're pricey. The castors provide enough jolt-proofing for many. Castors are easily changed after purchase, forks less so. If you're thinking about doing an aftermarket fork change (which will typically save you money over ordering the chair with suspension forks already on it), be sure the forks you order take the same size bearings as the forks you want to change to (this is a TiLite Buyer Beware area).

    FWIW, I've tried a fair few castors now. Jolts don't bother me, but weight does. I've tried and rejected Frog Legs soft rolls and the Melrose equivalent because I don't like the extra weight on the front of my chair. I'm actually happiest with SportAid's US$38 light-up plastic 5x1" castors, they're a bit softer than the hard black poly castors that came standard on my old chair but they're narrow and good on carpet and they amuse me. :-)

  8. #18
    the castors i got with my tr3 are good i like them, the rubber is quite absorbing compared to my second chair which are those cheap castors with the hard rubber, if you get after market forks consider the fact they might alter the front end of the chair so you might have to adjust the rear wheel height and if its none adjustable your stuck.

  9. #19
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    Soft roll casters are a little wider than the standard 1" kind. They are usually 1.4" wide but will still fit most forks. And yes, they have a cushioning effect. They do give a smoother, softer ride. They may be wider but that doesn't mean they don't do almost as well on hard floors. A look at the picture and you'll see that the wider tires are also crowned. That means they actually contact hard surfaces along a narrower track, not much wider than hard roll casters. Hard roll court casters do respond quicker, and I like them, but the soft rolls aren't bad either. As for carpeted floors, many people find that the wider softrolls perform better than the narrower casters on thicker, deeper carpet. They seem to "float" across the pile rather than dig in like the narrower wheels. I find this to be true also.

    I really don't feel any difference between frame designs for rolling resistance. That is more a function of weight, tires, and moving parts like wheels and bearings. And I have had other brands of box frame and "open frame," as you call them, with several different types of tires (I switch wheels sometimes). I also don't notice much difference between solid and the same width pneumatic tires, as long as the air pressure is above 110psi. They both ride along that crown I was talking about. Solids tires do loose there crown shape as they wear, however.

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  10. #20
    Thankyou all for the replies, your experience with different types equipment is invaluable. I'd never even heard of 'frogs legs' until visiting this site, and when I first came across the term thought, 'What the hell are they?'. After some googling I found them. They look good, but also quite heavy and expensive, and seeing as I've only got skinny arms. I think they will too much weight to my chair. I might try some different castors or just go a bit steadier over ridges and low kerbs etc.

    Quote Originally Posted by ala View Post
    A look at the picture and you'll see that the wider tires are also crowned. That means they actually contact hard surfaces along a narrower track, not much wider than hard roll casters.
    I'd never thought of this before but now you mention it, it's obvious! It must also be the reason why it's better to keep HP tyres properly inflated as you're riding on narrower strip of rubber along the crown. BTW I inflate my MP Evo tyres to 100psi, although it's bloody hard work. Both me and my mum have lean the on the stirrup pump handle together. And she never pushes at the same time as me!

    While on subject of titanium vs aluminium I'd appreciate opinions on this chair https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zZYNrVblmAE. It's an all titanium chair apart from the axle plates, castor forks, and pushrims. It's not bespoke like a Tilite but for here in the UK it offers exceptional value for money, and many of the optional extras that bump up the cost of a Tilite come as standard on the Invacare, and those that don't are priced very reasonably. Admittedly it's not the most attractive of chairs, especially the front castor forks and mounting. Also it has limited COG, but on the plus side it looks well built? Also both the seat and back upholstery are adjustable by velcro straps as standard. I'm not necessarily going to buy it! I just think it offers exceptional value for money for an all titanium chair. But not so good for car loading from the drivers seat.
    Last edited by Creaking Gate; 06-13-2015 at 08:43 AM. Reason: Paragraph and link re Invacare chair.

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