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Thread: Wheelchair width dilemma

  1. #1

    Wheelchair width dilemma

    So I have a chair that fits me extraordinarily well at the moment with regard to width. I'm about 8 months into what I assume will be a roughly year long battle with the DME to get off their lazy asses and get together with the insurance company and order my new wheelchair.

    My current chair is a tilite ZRA and was ordered at a 13" width. It came in closer to 13.5 or 14 inches depending on how you measure, and I have almost 14" between the standard tilite sideguards once I flipped them inside out to give me that extra quarter inch of clearance.

    Width is probably the most important dimension to me, I can deal with some ridiculous dump or a poorly measured floor to knee height (i've been putting up with it fine for almost 7 years with my current chair), but I really, really need the width to be precise.

    So my question for you fine folks is twofold:

    First, where exactly does TiLite measure the "width" of a seat?

    What is the margin of error on a TiLite chair (I'm getting another ZR)?

    On Sportaid the width is only selectable by 1 inch increments, which seems woefully inadequate for something I have no hope of replacing for the next half decade. I once saw somewhere the sort of acceptable variance of dimensions for TiLite, but I can't find that now when I search (this website is so hard to search).

    I eagerly await any advice you have.

    thanks

  2. #2
    I think you should focus on what you're width is in terms of the correct anatomical measurement done in the correct position, and then determine whether your chair, or proposed new chair, can accommodate that.

    I just got a new Permobil F3. My previous C300 was 17 inches. Later on I needed to get an 18 inch cushion and the new Permobils only go in 2 inch increments. It was either 17 or 19. I had to go to 19 and use laterals to keep my hips correctly aligned.

    Functionally, I would think seat to floor height and dump angle would take precedence over width as they determine daily functionality and comfort.

  3. #3
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Apr 2012
    Location
    Orlando, FL
    Posts
    496
    The seat width is the outside of the seat pan, to the outside of the seat pan. I don't believe there's any room for error when that's measured.
    I'm sure others here will weigh in as well.
    Rollin' since '89. Complete C8

  4. #4

    'chair width

    Looking at the rear of the 'chair. The left frame tube at the 9 o'clock position to the right tube 3 o'clock position is the width of the 'chair frame. There should be no margin of error on a frame width.

    If you have a CAD drawing take a look at it. Or check in CareCure's CAD Depository thread.

    For my last 'chair from TiLite and my insurance company it took almost one year to finally get the CAD drawing signed off. It's a new TiLite feature called Ti-Ordering.

    Ti
    "We must overcome difficulties rather than being overcome by difficulties."

  5. #5
    I agree - virtually zero tolerance on welded components (i.e., frame). TiLite's CAD drawings show units with one decimal place (e.g., 17.0, 19.0), which is an industry standard (known as "significant digit") indicating dimensions will be accurate to within half (i.e., 0.05) of the smallest indicated dimension.


    from current ZR order form:
    Attached Images Attached Images  
    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>

  6. #6
    dont go with tilite if thats the case, my rgk chair is measured in mm not inches so much better fit, unless ive read this post wrong forgive me

  7. #7

    Metric System

    Quote Originally Posted by rAdGie View Post
    Don't go with TiLite if that's the case, my rgk chair is measured in mm not inches so much better fit, unless I've read this post wrong forgive me.
    I was cleaning my 'chair about two weeks ago and I noticed four screws and washers fell off my side guards. I called TiLite and they said they would send me out replacements. I asked, "What size hex wrench I needed?" She didn't know. They are very tiny. The 'chair is made of English System units whereas the backrest is Metric System units. So I have to have both English and Metric hex wrenches to tighten or adjust the 'chair.

    The TiLite representative told me all 'chairs made after 2017 will be Metric System units parts.

    As an electrical designer is is much simpler to use the Metric System than the English System.

    The year 1976 the United States of America was suppose to switch over to the Metric System. All bottles, cans and bags had to have both English and Metric units on them for the transfer of systems. Forty plus years later you still see that on products but the USA still has not switched over to the Metric System. I remember in elementary school we had to learn the Metric System because we were going to switch over to the Metric System.

    The Metric System is very simple to use and understand.

    Ti
    "We must overcome difficulties rather than being overcome by difficulties."

  8. #8
    Quote Originally Posted by titanium4motion View Post
    The Metric System is very simple to use and understand.
    Ti
    As a mechanical engineer (retired) I wholeheartedly agree!!!!
    For example - length:
    IP units include IN, FT, YD, Rod, chain, fathom, mile, furlong, . . .
    SI = meter

    USA stuck in IP is a real pet peeve of mine, but no matter now because I'm retired!!
    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>

  9. #9
    I was led to understand we are indeed on the metric system. Apparently an inch a pound and a gallon are all defined by their metric equivalents now. For example there is no "standard pound" measure against which all other pounds are measured because the pound is an exact fraction of the standard kilogram.

  10. #10
    But back to the topic at hand, if tilite is so precise that the measurement is within 0.05 inches, why can't I get a chair that is exactly 13.35 inches wide?

    My chair is such a tight fit that I literally cannot fit a finger between my hips and the side guard. And when I measure my current chair the proper way it is within about 1/8 of an inch, but it is wide by an eighth of an inch. If it happened to be an eighth of an inch narrower than spec (so a quarter inch narrower than it is currently) I wouldn't be able to fit in it.

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