No announcement yet.

Para to power chair Help--seeking quality of life!!!

  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

    Para to power chair Help--seeking quality of life!!!

    Hi, i'm a t4/5 para and live in the country. I am very active but have felt VERY LIMITED in my manual ti lite chair. I just got a boston terrier pup and i'd like to be able to get about with more ease ( i'm killing myself!). I wondered if anyone has the 4by4 extreme or the frontier? They are all terrain and for indoor as well. Can anyone offer any suggestions or info about these particular chairs or other ones that they have found great?
    Thanks so much, Kim
    I'd like to be able to go around the cranberry bogs and around the ponds and lakes, woods etc---

    Private message a member called CapnGimp if he doesn't respond here. He's a very active para who also uses a P/C sometimes and is very knowledgable.
    C5/6 incomplete

    "I assume you all have guns and crack....."


      I don't have the two mentioned but I do have a couple of others. I have found the BIGGEST priority with a pc is weight. You want it light. You are going to get stuck every now and then in spite of being careful. The only way to get free is by rocking back and forth with your upper body as you work the joystick forwards/backwards. It works, but not in a big heavy chair, it will dig a hole way too quick.
      I say avoid 6 wheel chairs like the plague, they are just waiting to get stuck/high centered.
      I would find a cheap rear wheel drive chair on ebay. The fatter the wheels, the better and those you can change/adapt pretty easily. A tilt seat comes in very handy also, especially going down steep hills, it gets more weight over the rear wheels and alleviates that 'falling out/forward' feeling.

      I have 4 different chairs here of varying types. I use the quickie S-525 when I hit the woods. It's an old model, aluminum framed chair with tilt and a couple of 2 pole motors that climb like crazy. Very lightweight. Stable as a mountain goat.

      I used an old Invacare 4 pole, motored chair, it was essentially a frontwheel drive chair with 6 wheels, for many years. The front wheels didn't touch the ground though, only when tipped forward. It worked great going up very steep hills backwards, that it couldn't get traction on forwards. Nothing I have climbed as good as it. The 4 pole motors were the key.

      I have a Bounder Plus with HUGE motors that will do 9.5 mph. It climbs good but weighs 450 lbs. When you get in soft ground, you get stuck and have to call for rescue. NOT a good thing. I have learned to avoid soft ground in it.

      I have a Quickie G-424. It is a 6 wheel chair. Mid wheel drive is good on LEVEL terrain only. When it gets very uneven, you high center the drive wheels and get stuck. If the ground is level, you can sometimes rock free. This also means going up or down steep hills on rough ground is a no-no.

      I have heard 50/50 reports on both of the chairs you mentioned. You can go to and find quite a few users of each. But you will be hard pressed to find users who off-road in rough conditions.

      Lightweight, rearwheel drive, bigger wheels, the better. Take your time on ebay and you will get one really cheap. Use normal ebay smarts when buying,
      and get something you want and can use.
      If you have any more questions or want opinions on chairs you find, holler. I'd be glad to help.


        A properly programmed Quickie P222 SE should get you just about anywhere you need to go. It would be lighter and cheaper than either the Extreme 4x4 or the Frontier X5 which are imported from Australia and distributed in the US by Innovation in Motion .

        The X5 is marginally suitable for indoor use and has a seat-floor >20". The X4 has a motor at each wheel which means a huge turning radius and a greater chance of mechanical problems.

        I just issued another P222SE on Friday. Once I set up a driving profile which had a modest value for acceleration, but a high value for torque, it could be driven over 4-5" curbs and cover moderately rugged terrain. In addition, the seating would probably resemble that of your manual wheelchair with respect to back angle and seat dump.


          Hey old timer
          Got a question... The motors on the SE, are they brushless or 4-pole, I was looking at a couple of sites' specs on it and got two different descriptions, what's new. They LOOK like regular, close to what I have. It would be nice if we had a link to in-depth motor/electrical specs (subliminal nudge).
          Do you know of anyone who off-roads it often or at least occasionaly uses it off road that I could email or phone?
          And do you see anyone who has used one for a couple of years... so we know how it holds up.

          Alright, I have trouble with the lower numbers....
          that was three head scratchers for ya


            I'm a T-2, and due to having both shoulders reconstructed w/ titanium, I was sent home w/an Invacare TDX4. No bells or whistles, well maybe tilt. That chair SUCKED outside. Like you, I was very active ouside pre-injury and wanted to stay that way post injury. The TDX just didn't cut it. That thing, as are 'most' mid-wheel drive chairs, was horrible off road. It also rode rough as a cobb! I sent that thing packing and used my manual chair, but realized that there were some places I was not going to be able to go.

            Then.....Woohoo! Two years ago I got a Frontier x5 from the VA. The chair is amazing

            I would argue with SCI_OTR regarding the capabilities of a even a juiced up 222 being comparable to an X5. I have had mine in places that I was sure I would get stuck, yet failed to do so. If you drive smart, you will be amazed at what it can handle. Its also surprizingly nimble.

            Its footprint is only marginally larger than the TDX's, but what you make for in performance, far outweighs the added inch. There's not one indoor place that I can't reach in the X5 that I would be able to get to in an 18" manual.

            I'm in a manual chair 85% of the time, and use the x5 mostly outside the house, but I don't hesitate at all when it comes to entering the house.

            Demo one!! They're a little more expensive, but worth it!

            Don't forget to check out wheelchair That guy is amazing!



              Just keep in mind that with many insurances, and especially Medicare, you will be in for a fight getting them to pay for a power chair for anyone who is paraplegic.

              Generally you get some clerk looking in a manual and it says "paraplegic = manual chair, quadriplegic = power chair" and they try to not make any exceptions.

              You may have to appeal the first or second (or third, etc.) denial of this, so be prepared to have letters of MEDICAL necessity. Medicare and most other insurances do not consider community (out of house) mobility, recreation, or quality of life justifications for a power chair, so it may be a fight, or you may have to private pay.

              The VA is one exception, thank goodness, for our aging vets with their painful and worn-out shoulders!

              The SCI-Nurses are advanced practice nurses specializing in SCI/D care. They are available to answer questions, provide education, and make suggestions which you should always discuss with your physician/primary health care provider before implementing. Medical diagnosis is not provided, nor do the SCI-Nurses provide nursing or medical care through their responses on the CareCure forums.


                Originally posted by Herco16
                Then.....Woohoo! Two years ago I got a Frontier x5 from the VA. The chair is amazing

                I would argue with SCI_OTR regarding the capabilities of a even a juiced up 222 being comparable to an X5. I have had mine in places that I was sure I would get stuck, yet failed to do so.

                No need to argue. Because of those large low pressure knobby tires, a simple but effective suspension, and greater ground clearance, an X5 will handle more rugged terrain than a P222SE. It is a better off-road powerchair if off road capability is the only measure. Furthermore, I wouldn't recommend a P222 on the beach or where one might encounter a lot of standing water.

                But a P222 can get just about anywhere most people need to go. The VA is about the only third party payor who will cover an X5 (and it needs to be approved through Central Office). A new, well-equipped, P222SE can be purchased by anyone for a little over $6000, can be serviced anywhere, and parts are readily available.

                I'll also share this bit of irrelevant trivia, if you put an iBot against an X5 on deep gravel, the iBot will win.


                  Originally posted by SCI_OTR

                  I'll also share this bit of irrelevant trivia, if you put an iBot against an X5 on deep gravel, the iBot will win.
                  I'd be interested in seeing that! I know the Ibot has incredible capabilities. After airing down my x5's drive wheels to about 1-2psi, it'll traverse just about anything!

                  We need a test track! LOL (and a tow rope!)



                    I haven't had trouble with just my normal chair but I'm real strong. I'm not sure I could get a power chair under a barbed wire field fence for example. For me I either use my regular chair or if I really want to get around, use a four wheeler or the tractor.


                      I'm like Herco, use an X5 only when going offroading(I'm a T10) but it will enter a house just fine. Watch out, it will bunch up carpets in a hurry.

                      The 4x4 Extreme is NOT house friendly. It steers by turning the front wheels, and the turning radius is very large.

                      My X5 has taken me places I shouldn't have gone, , waay steeper than the specs for it, and thru mud(don't go inside for awhile ), over 4" logs, etc. As you can tell, I highly recommned it.

                      edit: here's a thread with good discuss and pics:

                      "a T10, who'd Rather be ridin'; than rollin'"


                        getting around off the beaten path

                        I used to use the old Honda 185 3 wheeled atc just like you want to do. A pc is easier to transport but the 3,now 4 wheelers are kick ass. I agree the 6 wheels can get high centered easily.

                        t12 l1 para, 32 years manual, going to a power chair daily


                          i was an urban assault vehicle in the city for four years in my 222se, and though we have been shut in most of the has performed great one year rual....very light weight and easily disassembled and loaded into a pickup bed by 2 teenagers....without me getting out of the chair...manual conversion is on my shortlist right behind worn to the cord tires and casters......need new batt chgr....would buy a another 222se tomorrow....or maybe now a 626se ?....oh, and fast as hell, faster than anyone can walk...or even average jog......??30?? mile range maybe, in the city on a cool day...great range off road too and will climb anything you dare to....just my experience


                            Having had both front wheel drive and rear wheel drive chairs which I drive alone through the National Forest, I much prefer front wheel drive. Leading with small tires mounted to a swivel causes the chair to shift to the right or left when hitting obstructions and can cause the driver to loose control. Especially when you need speed to conquer the obstruction

                            Attacking rough terrain with large, front, knobby tread tires allows the individual to climb, break through and steer straight regardless of the obstacle. Granted my power chair is heavy but many times I have climbed up on tree limb blockages so that I can break them in pieces and then, bust my way through.

                            Like the Capn said, having tilt allows the driver to tackle much steeper hills than you would believe.
                            Having a heavy chair also enables me to tow extremely heavy blockages as long as I can attach the chair to it. Rated to 1/2 a ton.

                            Next Mobility Omegatrac, quietly traversing the back-country searching for thrill and excitement.
                            Last edited by forestranger52; 14 Jul 2008, 7:28 PM.
                            C 5/6 Comp.
                            No Tri's or hand function.

                            Far better it is to try mighty things, to win glorious triumphs, even though checkered by failure. Than to take rank with those poor spirits who neither enjoy much or suffer much, because they live in the grey twilight that knows neither victory or defeat.

                            Teddy Roosevelt


                              Originally posted by forestranger52
                              ...Next Mobility Omegatrac, quietly traversing the back-country searching for thrill and excitement.