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  • Help me get a new chair.

    Been using wack ass Quickie GT and of course it's shit. I mean it's lasted 6 years, but I've needed to change this chair for about 3 years now. I've had to change casters twice, spokes are half gone, it squeaks like hell, paints chipped, brakes havent worked in YEARS. I seriously dont know why I've waited this long, I've blown out shoulders for sure.

    Now, for a new chair.

    I'm eye balling ZRA/Aero Z or Invacare Crossfire, maybe the T7/T6 (altho these are heavy and non adjustable they seem stable and solid).

    Now what I'm looking for is something very very durable, monotube, this bad boy will have lots of miles in various 3rd world countries so something that can handle lots of curb jumps, cracks, jammed up roads, airport handling and something solid, preferably under 15-17lbs (but not a must). I want something that DOES NOT SQUEAK. My quickie is so loud and wobbly. I dont remember it being like this prior to traveling, so I think the frame is pretty much done.

    I really like the ZRA black edition. looks very cool. I am thinking about ZRA because I might want to play with adjustability.....Ive had poor posture for so long that I dont even know what is comfortable to sit in and will probably play with it for a good solid year before I find my sweet spot.

  • #2
    Might look at the Mike Box chairs. He builds the chair for the kid that does back flips on skate board ramps. He makes a suspension chair too. That could help some of the abuse.

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    • #3
      Box chairs would take a beating for sure

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      • #4
        You need a new set of good wheels.
        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.

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        • #5
          no shit I need a new chair thus the thread.

          I don't think I need a mike box. I standard should be suffice.

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          • #6
            I can't think of a better fit for your described needs and wants than the ZRA you have already honed in on. I can think of more durable, but not monoframe. And more adjustable, but less durable. The ZRA is a superior option, if not by much, than the others you've listed, IMO.
            "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

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            • #7
              I'd go for the ZRa or an Icon. Stay away from the Crossfire - the difference in quality control compared to a ZRa is like night and day.
              Don - Grad Student Emeritus
              T3 ASIA A 26 years post injury

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              • #8
                My son has had both a ZRA and, more recently, an Icon. Granted, he is only 10 years old, so my thoughts may not all be relevant to you, but here goes:

                The chairs are very different, despite both being sold as "adjustable".
                If you truly want / need adjustable, then the Icon wins hands down.
                If you want / need suspension, only the Icon has it (and it works well, based on mountain bike technology).
                If you want to use a Freewheel, you will need the ZRA (the Icon footrest cannot take the Freewheel forces, as we discovered, and had to replace my son's footrest. I would say that the footrest design is the weakest aspect of the Icon - it is fine for a complete para (like my son), but if you are able to put your weight on the footrest (ie stand to some extent), don't be surprised if the footrest assembly becomes damaged over time). Having said this, Freewheel has just announced an adaptor (primarily for a folding chair), which could be suitable for the Icon - if that's the case I will be happy!
                My son uses a Firefly regularly, but we've only had it fitted to the Icon. It works very well. I see no reason why it couldn't be used with the ZRA, except there would be a reasonable force applied to the cantilevered front end, for which the chair is not really designed....
                The ZRA had some initial problems with its backrest folding mechanism. That seems to be resolved now (with a new assembly design).
                The Icon is noisier than the ZRA, but that should be expected as it is a dynamic assembly (ie with suspension, so it moves!).
                The ZRA's aluminimum rear rigidiser bar broke at the weld to the canes (despite my son using a rigid back that should have taken some of the backrest loads away from the rigidiser bar). Tilite replaced it promptly, and I noticed that they had increased the wall thickness of the tubulars, so perhaps they realised there was a design problem. (And if you do order a ZRA, note that the standard titanium frame actually uses an aluminium backrest - there is an additional charge for the titanium option, which I hadn't realised).
                The ZRA is lighter, but that's because it doesn't have suspension.
                The Icon is very stable, with a low centre of gravity (due to the suspension).
                The Icon was purchased to replace the ZRA (which I was told my son was "growing out of"). However, due to the vast range of adjustability that the Icon has, the footprint (in both width and length) of the Icon is significantly less than that of the ZRA. If you put them side-by-side, the ZRA looks like it is the one bought to replace the Icon!

                In summary, both chairs seem good to me. (He had a little Quickie folder when he was 4-5 years old - I won't even comment on that one!). It all comes down to what is important to you, particularly regarding adjustability (how much do you want / need) and suspension (do you want / need it)?

                From our perspective, I can't see a requirement for my son to get another new chair for several years (he's had the Icon for nearly 2 years). The Icon grows with him. At least that's my opinion - he may think differently if/when he decides he wants a chair colour other than black!
                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.

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                • #9
                  Great responses guys. Lot of people are talking about this Icon. Never really knew what this was until last week. Going to check it out more in depth and size it up against the ZRA. I hear its like the Marvel? it looks cool from what I can see. all black too which is what im looking for. one thing that worries me....are the front tire/casters. they look like they're attached to the frame by screws, rather than the casters being apart/under the frame. has anyone had issues with that? it loosening or falling apart?

                  thanks everyone for the replies they are most def taken into consideration. This is going to be a chair Im going to have for awhile, I would go as far as to say my first real chair that Im choosing on my own (when I got the quickie, I was still out of it from the car accident, I can barely remember doing the fitting) this is real important to me, so I appreciate all the feed back.

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                  • #10
                    As I understand it, the designers / owners of the Marvel were bought out by a larger company (and I don't believe that the Marvel is still being produced / sold). The designers then started a new company and came up with the Icon. Jeff Adams is one of those designers...he's on CareCure.

                    Regarding the front castors, they are held in place with a bolted clamp. Fantastic adjustability, in that you could have them pointed forwards if you wanted greater stability for some reason - similar to "mini-freewheels", or you can have them swept back to minimize the footprint, or you can have them perfectly aligned with the rear wheels...lots of options, and no issues with loosening or falling apart at all. IMHO a far better design than the ZRA.
                    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.

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                    • #11
                      interesting. I guess the clamp is the only thing that worries me for curb jumping but if youve never had problems I guess it doesnt loosen hmmm.

                      I am going to look into the Icon and see how much the total is. We're having a convention here in LA next week. maybe theyll have a demo so I can 'test drive'

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                      • #12
                        https://www.facebook.com/iconwheelchairs
                        $3295 for the base model. A fair bit cheaper than when my son's was purchased!

                        ZRA base model is presumably cheaper, but no suspension....

                        Wish there were conventions this side of Australia...but unfortunately not....
                        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.

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                        • #13
                          Originally posted by Imight View Post
                          interesting. I guess the clamp is the only thing that worries me for curb jumping but if youve never had problems I guess it doesnt loosen hmmm.
                          It seems to have been designed well. In the worst case scenario, it would be easy to get a replacement front castor assembly (and/or front footrest assembly), and just bolt it all back together. Try doing that with a welded ZRA!
                          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.

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                          • #14
                            Originally posted by Gordy1 View Post
                            It seems to have been designed well. In the worst case scenario, it would be easy to get a replacement front castor assembly (and/or front footrest assembly), and just bolt it all back together. Try doing that with a welded ZRA!
                            that's true. I am most def going to take a look at this, I love how its all black. might paint the white font and make it real stealth.

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                            • #15
                              I'm a huge fan of Jeff Adams and Christian Bagg. I was an early adopter of their Marvel M1, and am still, to this day, quite disappointed their company was dismantled by their primary investor: Cervelo (of racing bicycle fame). The Marvel M2 would have been over the top, and just thinking about what happened still upsets me, and I was just a customer. Can't imagine what it was/is like for Jeff and Christian. Being professionals, and passionate about their work, they dusted themselves off and moved on to create the Icon.

                              The Icon is an update on an earlier design of Bagg's in collaboration with Sorano (another bicycle company). It (Icon) was engineered in partnership with a world-class design/engineering firm with extensive experience in high-end autos and race cars, as well as other industrial equipment. It is quite an accomplishment, IMHO. If I hadn't already had a stable of 3 fantastic chairs, 2 Lashers and the Marvel, I would have bought one by now.

                              If I were in China, and traveling to other developing nations, I would be leery of taking an Icon. For no other reason than all that adjustability MIGHT compromise 2 of your requirements: Silent running and long term durability. Early reports indicate some rattling occurs and regular fastener maintenance is required. I imagine the rougher the regular surfaces you encounter the greater this requirement/liability will be. On durability, I can only say there isn't enough long term usage data available for me to have confidence in an opinion, one way or another. More complexity (suspension and its linkage, more fasteners, non-structural footrest) implies more potential issues, IMO.

                              Direct factory support would be much better with the Icon, though, I'm not knowledgable about the differences in TiLite vs Icon warranties. Since you want to buy "for the long haul" this is an important consideration, IMO.

                              Having posted all that, I would buy an Icon before a ZRA if I was in the market today, but I am VERY easy on my equipment, and a trip to the grocery store, or the mall, is about as adventurous as I get, these days! (Aside that, a minimally adjustable aluminum box frame (Aero T, Box, Terminator, ORacing Xtreme Box -this one in chromolybendum!!!) would actually be my choice for silent running and durability in a far away land, but, that doesn't fit your desire for adjustability. (Aluminum/steel welders are quite common in developing places. Titanium, not so much!) Although, when was the last time you changed something on your GT?!?! Is that really a high priority? Higher than long term durability, for instance?)

                              My .02 cents, only, of course.
                              "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

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