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Thread: Tilite won't repair my chair!!

  1. #21
    Quote Originally Posted by NW-Will View Post
    ..
    My request was for you to send me an email: stephen@bike-on.com

  2. #22
    Quote Originally Posted by Patrick Madsen View Post
    I do appreciate Stephen and John without a doubt. It's sad a person has to know a connection to get any kind of service or parts from most W/C companies. Of course they're going to bend over backwards for you guys because of the chairs you sell from them. I agree manufacturers aren't perfect but in the least, they could sell the parts they unperfectly made to owners without the needed upcharge and time going thru a dme.
    "Web cred" matters too.


  3. #23
    Quote Originally Posted by SCI_OTR View Post
    "Web cred" matters too.
    Hi SCI_OTR
    Web cred? That's knowing the difference between the arse end of the dog, the bite end and what lies between, right?
    If that is what means the difference between an off-hand service and one that is enquiring, professional and efficient then there needs to be some shake up at both the DME level and at the manufacturer/distributor level.
    I am sure that Patrick knows his 'arse from his elbow' and yet he seems to have experienced the same 'deferred service' that NW-Will is bringing to our notice.
    My experience was with DME, now Permobil, with my Catalyst 5 breakage. A safety and design issue and yet piss poor communication from the local NZ agent and bugger all from Ki in the States.
    It appears that they shut up shop when there is a potential liability issue.

    Maybe the industry sees cripples as a captive market? And we are, but we're not effing stupid.
    Even without this Web Cred you speak of .
    Last edited by slow_runner; 06-03-2019 at 06:24 AM.

  4. #24
    Quote Originally Posted by slow_runner View Post
    Hi SCI_OTR
    Web cred? That's knowing the difference between the arse end of the dog, the bite end and what lies between, right?
    If that is what means the difference between an off-hand service and one that is enquiring, professional and efficient then there needs to be some shake up at both the DME level and at the manufacturer/distributor level.
    I am sure that Patrick knows his 'arse from his elbow' and yet he seems to have experienced the same 'deferred service' that NW-Will is bringing to our notice.
    My experience was with DME, now Permobil, with my Catalyst 5 breakage. A safety and design issue and yet piss poor communication from the local NZ agent and bugger all from Ki in the States.
    It appears that they shut up shop when there is a potential liability issue.

    Maybe the industry sees cripples as a captive market? And we are, but we're not effing stupid.
    Even without this Web Cred you speak of .
    Maybe there's another meaning of "web cred", but that sounds like a misinterpretation of what I meant. Over the years, manufacturers have realized that this site can give them an abundance of feedback about their products. I first started posting here over a decade ago because I knew that there wasn't much information on the web that could help an end user who is paying out of pocket to spec out their own chair. I knew many did so because their DME or therapist screwed up their specs.

    Make no mistake, manufacturers have no choice but to to structure their business models so that the primary customer is the authorized reseller of their product. Our system is set up so that the vast majority of custom chairs are prescribed by therapists for their clients/patients using their local DME's. The vast majority of them are also paid for by Medicare, Medicaid, private insurance, or someone other than the end user. What they decide to reimburse will be based on what they determine to be "medically necessary" for the beneficiary using an overly restrictive definition.

    I work full time as an SCI occupational therapist and my primary job is to prescribe, provide, and configure custom mobility equipment for veterans living with SCI, advanced MS, or ALS. I work in a system which buys direct from the manufacturer (i.e no DME & no profit motive). I also live with an SCI myself and am a custom rigid frame ed user.

    Given the scarcity of information on the web and the search engine friendly nature of this site, it didn't take long before manufacturers began monitoring the CC Equipment forum. While there is far less activity today, many of the images that were once posted were lost, and the in-depth discussions that took place here can be difficult to access, the CC Equipment forum it is still the primary place on the net where one can find reasonably objective information about products.

    The fact that I posted on CC wasn't lost on the manufacturers when I interacted with them in the course of my job. While I've always had a "love-hate" relationship with most, the fact that I could view their products from a variety of perspectives and objectively posted my observations here gave me access to many of the key individuals inside these companies.

    Back when I started posting, Stephen and John had no experience in "the industry", but they were very knowledgeable about chairs and their prior contributions had already helped numerous people on this site. Like myself, both Stephen and John had developed what I understand to be web cred. This didn't go unnoticed by Scott Pellett, the owner of Bike-On, who hired both of them and a number of other CC members. While recruiting people from an internet forum is unlikely to be adopted by Fortune 500 corporations, his strategy has definitely paid off.

    I stopped posting here regularly a few years ago, but Stephen and John have carried on. While there is always the potential for conflict of interest, they have done a reasonably good job of avoiding such conflicts and have stay involved here primarily for the benefit of others. The manufacturers realize that too. That is why they have the "web cred" that I speak of.


  5. #25
    Quote Originally Posted by slow_runner View Post
    Hi SCI_OTR
    Web cred? That's knowing the difference between the arse end of the dog, the bite end and what lies between, right?
    If that is what means the difference between an off-hand service and one that is enquiring, professional and efficient then there needs to be some shake up at both the DME level and at the manufacturer/distributor level.
    I am sure that Patrick knows his 'arse from his elbow' and yet he seems to have experienced the same 'deferred service' that NW-Will is bringing to our notice.
    My experience was with DME, now Permobil, with my Catalyst 5 breakage. A safety and design issue and yet piss poor communication from the local NZ agent and bugger all from Ki in the States.
    It appears that they shut up shop when there is a potential liability issue.

    Maybe the industry sees cripples as a captive market? And we are, but we're not effing stupid.
    Even without this Web Cred you speak of .
    What a coincidence. I was saying the same type of thing today on post #26 on the thread in the link below.

    http://sci.rutgers.edu/forum/showthr...98#post1879598

    There is definitely a business model issue. Personally, I don't buy the excuse that it's all the DME's and insurance's fault. Even when I have good working relations with the DME and insurance and I can see both of them going to bat for me, TiLite still has deaf ears. It's really who you know. It not even good enough to know someone in TiLite. You have to know the right person in TiLite. How is that a functional business model? That needs to change. We have to keep speaking up until it changes. No excuses.
    Last edited by August West; 06-03-2019 at 07:32 AM.

  6. #26
    our community does have some other great options as far as custom chairs. ie- hoc and box chairs, these guys dont use dealers but its private pay only whereas tilite can be ran through insurance. give and take i suppose, you are right, certainly could be better.
    Quote Originally Posted by Patrick Madsen View Post
    I do appreciate Stephen and John without a doubt. It's sad a person has to know a connection to get any kind of service or parts from most W/C companies. Of course they're going to bend over backwards for you guys because of the chairs you sell from them. I agree manufacturers aren't perfect but in the least, they could sell the parts they unperfectly made to owners without the needed upcharge and time going thru a dme.
    Bike-on.com rep
    John@bike-on.com
    c4/5 inc funtioning c6. 28 yrs post.
    sponsored handcycle racer

  7. #27
    I think we can all see where the conflicts of interest are. I find it inappropriate for DME’s to use this forum to promote their business relationships with wheelchair manufacturers. I thought this forum is for the interests of people with spinal cord injuries.

  8. #28
    Senior Member Oddity's Avatar
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    I am a huge proponent of non-commercialization of this site, and have stood up to it more than once. If I thought that's what was happening here, I'd do it again, but it isn't. They toe the line just fine IMO. Don't convince yourself something is true just because you can imagine it. Especially when impugning the motives of folks you don't know.

    Quote Originally Posted by August West View Post
    I think we can all see where the conflicts of interest are. I find it inappropriate for DME?s to use this forum to promote their business relationships with wheelchair manufacturers. I thought this forum is for the interests of people with spinal cord injuries.
    "I have great faith in fools; self-confidence my friends call it." - Edgar Allen Poe

    "If you only know your side of an issue, you know nothing." -John Stuart Mill, On Liberty

    "Even what those with the greatest reputation for knowing it all claim to understand and defend are but opinions..." -Heraclitus, Fragments

  9. #29
    Quote Originally Posted by SCI_OTR View Post
    Maybe there's another meaning of "web cred", but that sounds like a misinterpretation of what I meant.
    I have never heard of the script 'web cred', its all newspeak to me SCI_OTR.
    I searched Google - it appears that in this instance google was not my friend
    Either way, the consumer is too often ignored. It appears that it is only when litigation, exposure or assistance from the inside that action is initiated.
    That damn corporate profit mantra mindset despite obligations, again.



    Following on from what Oddity has said, open discussion, enquiry, debate are all valid and should not be curtailed.
    We know or have an idea how the machine works.
    Fortunately the machine is also the people within and their willingness to offer knowledge and to facilitate an easier route to a resolution is appreciated.
    Company policy is one thing; thankfully people are another more flexible component. Otherwise we could all be screwed when we need assistance, direction and resolution most.
    Gordon Bennet, we pay enough for the stuff we require - directly or via taxes and premiums.

    Among the many others who contribute and ease the path, thanks to fuentjps, Stephenand SCI_OTR.

  10. #30
    Quote Originally Posted by Oddity View Post
    I am a huge proponent of non-commercialization of this site, and have stood up to it more than once. If I thought that's what was happening here, I'd do it again, but it isn't. They toe the line just fine IMO. Don't convince yourself something is true just because you can imagine it. Especially when impugning the motives of folks you don't know.
    It's not my imagination. You have seen people selling products here. That requires them to protect the interests of the manufacturer. Can they protect the interests of the manufacturer and the end user? Sometimes but not always. That's just a fact.

    In this case, I have told TiLite that there is a safety issue and they have ignored it. I had to burn a bridge with one DME because he would not go to bat for me. Why? Because they have to deal with me only once. But they have to deal with TiLite on a daily basis. That encounter cost me a year in dealy. It shouldn't be that way. If I have to burn another one, so be it. Not my preference to burn bridges. You can catch more flies with honey than vinegar. But at some point, it's more about safety than protecting my bridges. I finally found a DME that would go to bat for me. It was a long stressful process. It shouldn't be that way. I have yet to hear someone here with a contact at TiLite say, "Hey that's wrong! If there is a safety issue, they should listen." It shouldn't be that way. Our safety should be a priority. So maybe, just maybe you can see my perspective even if I am coming across too strong for your liking.
    Last edited by August West; 06-03-2019 at 07:32 PM.

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