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Thread: Looking for an offroad electric wheelchair

  1. #31
    Senior Member
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    Mar 2008
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    Perth, Western Australia
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mutley View Post
    Yes our sand grain is a little bigger than sugar grain. My new best friend has had a look at what i need and has suggested I turn one of my old manual wheelchairs into an electric offroader. He reckons he can do it. I've already got some oversized back wheels. Looking now for front wheels and a way to mount them. I'd still be able to steer differentiating the speed of the 2 rear wheels, correct?
    Interesting...how will he power the oversized back wheels I wonder? My son has used oversized rear wheels and a Freewheel, manually. It works, but it?s a hell of a lot of effort for him to go a short way. Powered rear wheels would be great, but that (motor plus battery) adds weight, which isn?t necessarily good.

    I don?t see why a Freewheel wouldn?t work for your front end, as the front will be relatively light compared to the weight over the rear wheels. No point re-inventing the wheel, is there?!?

    And I would think you are correct about steering.
    Gordon, father of son who became t6 paraplegic at the age of 4 in 2007 as a result of surgery to remove a spinal tumour.

  2. #32
    Senior Member
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    Mar 2012
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    Hampstead NC
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    1,098
    There are several companies who manufacture pancake motors for electric powered bicycles as well as controllers for such motors. Batteries with ample stored power will be a challenge and of controllable voltage might be an issue as well. Wide (sand floating) tires will assist your project, however, they demand a lot of power propelling you both on sand as well as hard surfaces. Large diameter wheels do tend not getting bogged down as easy as say 14"x 3 on 4" wide OD tires or less usually found on power wheelchairs.

    When you demand the amount of power it requires to propel you and your chair at 24 volts it may well take a few minutes of well over 100 amps of power or 2.3 KW for a few moments (a tremendous amount of heat) or longer there are not many if any power controls that can supply this amount of power for more the a very few seconds before there is smoke. Batteries that supply this power demand more juice than lead acid batteries (heavy/weight issue) can supply as well (internal resistance issue) . Lithium batteries can answer some of this problem but most lithium based chemistries can be very dangerous when they are placed under such an instant demand. They have shown to be extremely flammable when this situation occurs. Not a great place to be sitting when they flame up or explode underneath you.

    This is Not an impossible task but it will take a lot of thought, and the never ending issue Money$$$ every false construction move costs time and money. Both are extremely tight at my age, I do not know about your situation. Good luck in your endeavors.

  3. #33
    Quote Originally Posted by Mutley View Post
    It is schoolies month, that's correct... The queensland kids came down in the third week and now the southern kids are here. the X8 (or atleast the one I want) is $15,000 second hand.- worth a little more than my desire to get closer to the beach. I called the Australian distributor and was given a price even more offensive (well above $20k).I have found a friend who has a friend who is keen to have a crack at converting an old wheelchair to one that is suitable for sand. I've been trawling ebay for a base wheelchair but they all seem to be central wheel driven. Gonna keep looking...
    If you go this route a good base is an older pride jet 3. You can probably find one for a few hundred bucks. I've built about ten powered beach wheelchairs based on these. I sold most of them to the state of California to be used at various beaches for public use. Some of which are still in use today. They work very well and with just 2 U1 batteries you can spend most of the day on the beach. If you have a friend that can fabricate the parts it can be done fairly easily. The hardest part is to make a hub that will work with the large beach tires.

  4. #34
    If you want to build your own definitely check out wheelchairdriver.Com you will get advice on controller options for high current draw and possible motors. Lithium batteries are not dangerous if you get the right ones http://batteryuniversity.com is a good place to start. My Boma off road chair has LFP's which give greater range and are lighter.

  5. #35
    I really like the Genny: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OXlAXwD_KA0 although it seems like you need some trunk control which I do not have.

  6. #36
    Senior Member
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    Feb 2010
    Location
    Gold Coast Australia
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gordy1 View Post
    Interesting...how will he power the oversized back wheels I wonder? My son has used oversized rear wheels and a Freewheel, manually. It works, but it?s a hell of a lot of effort for him to go a short way. Powered rear wheels would be great, but that (motor plus battery) adds weight, which isn?t necessarily good.
    I am not sure. The way I was thinking was to use separate motors for each rear wheel, which would lead to more weight. But if the motors were powerful enough, the only problem then would be finding batteries that wouldn't explode. does anyone have Elon Musks direct line?

    Quote Originally Posted by Gordy1 View Post
    I don?t see why a Freewheel wouldn?t work for your front end, as the front will be relatively light compared to the weight over the rear wheels. No point re-inventing the wheel, is there?!?
    The freewheels I've seen were way too skinny for soft sand. I'm not too confident with them on wet sand to be honest either. I'm thinking to fabricate brackets to attach to the front frame that would have donut tires (really thick).
    Everybody wants freedom.... They just don't want it for everybody else...

  7. #37
    I posted a link to battery university above, you will find a number of different batteries which will deliver the power needed and won't explode. 2 motors has advantages single needs a drive shaft and ideally a differential. Your biggest problem will probably be controller to handle amps and setting up a control system. Download something like the Dynamic Controls DX manual and have your head explode with all the options. You also need to get an interface dongle which most makers won't supply. I've got an OEM dongle and can modify but find it difficult to know how to get the most from the controller.

  8. #38
    Junior Member
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    Jan 2017
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    Thunder Bay, ON, Canada
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    17
    Check this out! Very, very cool and might be just what you are looking for and/or need

    http://freedomtrax.com/

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