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Quadra & Lightweight Wheelchair Revolution

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    Quadra & Lightweight Wheelchair Revolution

    for those old enough to remember...

    I was injured in 78' and recall the feeling of seeing my, "first Quadra" from there to Quickie, interesting story and well told by Bob Vogel in New Mobility :

    http://www.newmobility.com/articleViewIE.cfm?id=12233

    #2
    What a great read.
    "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

    Comment


      #3
      Boy what a blast from the past. I remember meeting Brad and Dave at a tournament in Honolulu. THey brought their ridgids with them for the first time.

      George Boshko had the first Quadra in Canada, I had the second. Also had one of their first track chairs. Basically a stretched out chair made of heavy material.

      The first models didn't have a caster housing adjustment so to get the dump we wanted and trying to get the wheels as close to 90o was done by using a threaded piece of steel for axels. If the metal was too soft, the caster would suddenly collapse underneath you and dig into the basketball court. I spent literally hours and hours dialing in the chair as it had to be custom done.

      Thanks Ches, the Quadra was a great chair for a first and the first Quickies are still a great chair.

      Comment


        #4
        Great story! So thankful for the new chairs out there and an appreciation for how they all began.
        A dolla makes me holla, honey boo boo! - borrowed from Honey boo boo child

        Comment


          #5
          Originally posted by Patrick Madsen View Post
          Boy what a blast from the past. I remember meeting Brad and Dave at a tournament in Honolulu. THey brought their ridgids with them for the first time.

          George Boshko had the first Quadra in Canada, I had the second. Also had one of their first track chairs. Basically a stretched out chair made of heavy material.

          The first models didn't have a caster housing adjustment so to get the dump we wanted and trying to get the wheels as close to 90o was done by using a threaded piece of steel for axels. If the metal was too soft, the caster would suddenly collapse underneath you and dig into the basketball court. I spent literally hours and hours dialing in the chair as it had to be custom done.

          Thanks Ches, the Quadra was a great chair for a first and the first Quickies are still a great chair.
          Hey Patrick,

          I was thinking as I read, that you probably knew some of the "West Coasters" & athletes.

          Agree with you on Quadra and my first Quickie was an excellent chair, changed the whole user/chair relationship.

          Great to see all the innovations that keep coming.

          Comment


            #6
            Originally posted by ChesBay View Post
            Hey Patrick,

            I was thinking as I read, that you probably knew some of the "West Coasters" & athletes.

            Agree with you on Quadra and my first Quickie was an excellent chair, changed the whole user/chair relationship.

            Great to see all the innovations that keep coming.

            Our idea of a sportschair was an E&J or Stainless folder with smaller wheels and heavy sleeves that went into the caster housing, added around 7lbs to the already 50lb lightweight.

            Yeah knew most of them. Was a really small group. A person usually did three or four events at Nationals, the Olympics or Stoke Mandelville games back then.


            Thanks for the flashback. I would have little hesitation using an old Quickie GP but sure appreciate the newer ones.

            Comment


              #7
              Speaking of making do back in the day. Wasn't there a way you could put camber in a old E&J folder? Pat you or one of the other guys must have shown my parents? I know I ran with that modification until got rid of that chair.

              Comment


                #8
                Our wheelchair b'ball team bought Quadras and my wife and I purchased 2 for ourselves. I had a gold folder, my wife a maroon rigid. One of the 1st places we visited with our new chairs was the Detroit Institute of Arts. The floors are marble and tile and we just flew around, after years of E&J lead sleds it was like a dream. Later we got into wheelchair road racing, my 1st chair was a Stainless race chair, when you came to a corner you turned the steering handles and the chair continued straight. My wife decided to try racing as well and bought a used Quadra race chair from a crip that a lot of you have bought chairs from. I wish we had saved our Quadras, so interesting to read the great story of their development.

                Comment


                  #9
                  I still have my 1981 red rigid Quadra. It is in great shape and as the article said, pretty much indestructable. I bought it with the stocker 24 inch wheels plus the optional 27 inch racing rims with the thought of doing marathons. I never really could get the 27 inch wheels to work right with the chair and therefore never really got into wheelchair racing, glad I did not, my shoulders are still good after 31 years of T-4 parahood. It was a shame though too that I did not get into wheelchair tennis at the time, did that within the last 5 years, I'm a late bloomer I guess. I played a serious amount of tennis as a/b in the 70's. At the time I got so motivated to get my engineering degree and become an engineer I did not do a lot of things I probably should have done. But ya, it was a great chair, I travelled all over the country with it.
                  "Life is about how you
                  respond to not only the
                  challenges you're dealt but
                  the challenges you seek...If
                  you have no goals, no
                  mountains to climb, your
                  soul dies".~Liz Fordred

                  Comment


                    #10
                    This is an interesting thread, will somebody please put up a pic or two of the Quadra?
                    I have had periodic paralysis all my life. I lost my ability to walk in 2011 beginning with a spinal block, which was used for a hip fracture caused by periodic paralysis.

                    Comment


                      #11
                      Originally posted by canuck View Post
                      Speaking of making do back in the day. Wasn't there a way you could put camber in a old E&J folder? Pat you or one of the other guys must have shown my parents? I know I ran with that modification until got rid of that chair.
                      Yep, I remember showing your dad what we did. It was a 1" bar with two holes in it. We put where the crossbars met, pushing the frame into a squeeze.

                      It loosened up the upholstery bigtim and if a person folded it too quickly, the slide tubes in the front would come out and the plastic slides on the rear would pop off. Was hell if that happened in the dark as the whcir would be completley apart with the partss somewhere you couldn't find them. THanks for reminding me of that.

                      Comment


                        #12
                        Originally posted by ancientgimp View Post
                        Our wheelchair b'ball team bought Quadras and my wife and I purchased 2 for ourselves. I had a gold folder, my wife a maroon rigid. One of the 1st places we visited with our new chairs was the Detroit Institute of Arts. The floors are marble and tile and we just flew around, after years of E&J lead sleds it was like a dream. Later we got into wheelchair road racing, my 1st chair was a Stainless race chair, when you came to a corner you turned the steering handles and the chair continued straight. My wife decided to try racing as well and bought a used Quadra race chair from a crip that a lot of you have bought chairs from. I wish we had saved our Quadras, so interesting to read the great story of their development.
                        The chairs George and I bought were so early a person could only get black back then. Did that Stainless racing chair come apart for traveling? I remember they tried a chair that would come apart in about a dozen pieces and went into a small case. Was really impractical and swayed like a mongoose in the wind. YEah those handles welded to the front caster axels were usueless lol.

                        We were at the Nationals in Toronto and Stan Stronge introduced me to the President of E&J. He wanted him to see the new ridgid framed chair. The Pres. looked at it and kind of gave a harrumph stating it would never sell and was completly impractical.

                        Boy, those 27" racing wheels were mammoth Curt. I had a set also. We used to have fundraisers by wheeling the 6mile loop at Stanley Park. I used the set one year and ended up with these huge blisters on the joints of my hands. The Vancouver Sun would do writeups about these wheelchair athletes who could actually push six miles without stopping. Before Rick Hansen did his first marathon, he had to prove that a wheeler could actually do a26miler. The TV stations were there and was a major feature in the news. This was around '76, way before his Man in Motion tour.

                        Racing was so primative. THe big thing was the small rings tied directly to the spokes of the wheel. Other than that, we used those big 8" air casters in the front.

                        Chris Stoddard came out with the first ridgid racechair, even before Quadras, made of angle iron bolted together. There was such a ruckus from the other provinces that the chair was illegal because his legs were out too far and it didn't fold.

                        I brought out my first handcycle to the BC games in Kamloops BC. I used rain gutters for leg troughs and an actual plastic kitchen chair with the legs taken off. We brazed on these little posts so the rear leg hole would fit into it. I was literally booed by some of the crankers there. They felt anything mechanical was an abomination.
                        Last edited by Patrick Madsen; 3 Nov 2012, 1:38 AM.

                        Comment


                          #13
                          I don't recall my Stainless race chair coming apart. You sat fairly upright w your legs extended straight, pushrims connected to wheels with "spider clips" attached to wheels. Brakes courtesy of long sleeved shirt and pressing biceps against wheels and praying. One of the 1st races we traveled long distance to was the Orange Bowl Marathon in Miami, maybe 1984. There was one switchback portion of the race where I could clearly see the leaders trading leads - Rick Hanson and George Murray and Marty Ball right up there with them. Later I bought a Dean Barret chair and my wife traded her Quadra racechair for a Bair chair. As the years went by we bought Jerry Smith Handcrafted Metals chairs (with Hillclimbers), his company somehow morphed into Top End after Chris Peterson split from the company. Over the years I also had one Hall's Wheels race chair and a number of Barry Ewing's Eagle race chairs. Made the transition from 8" pneumatic front caster race chairs to 12" front casters, to 16" to 18" to 3 wheelers.

                          Comment


                            #14
                            I had a stainless racer. Didn't come apart that I remembered. I turned the frame upside down to get lower. Now we call it dump. Put a tie rod between the front 8 inch wheels and built hand rims out of flexible PVC. A guy named Ziggy and I built Jean Driscoll's first racer out of 2" PVC. She hated it and racing that first race.

                            Comment


                              #15
                              Dang, you guys are OLD!!



                              Seriously, I wish I had half the energy you guys had/have, to put into redefining what it means to be "disabled"!

                              And what's up with those "side wheelies"?!?!?!?

                              I'd like to be able to pull that off!
                              "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

                              Comment

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