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  • minivan or what

    I'm planning on buying a new minivan. Don't want to load/unload the wc and put extra stress on my body. Any recommendations on what models are best or what ones that people have had issues with?

    Probably have the side ramp, a driver seat that swivels around, handcontrols, and a belt to hook to my wc after I transfer out of it.

    Also, are there any SUVs that I could convert and not have a huge transfer. I would like an SUV but even if I lowered it I would need to get my wc in and it doesn't fold, it's rigid. I'm not wanting to load it myself. There is always the option of a truck and lift my chair in the bed, but a truck doesn't hold much. I have to think of groceries, family, friends, etc. Plus wouldn't my chair get dirty or wet in bad weather....

    Any ideas?

    Thank you.
    I'm c6c7 incomp.
    Aerodynamically, the bumble bee shouldn't be able to fly, but the bumble bee doesn't know that, so it goes on flying anyways--Mary Kay Ash

  • #2
    There is a company in Ontario that does lift conversions on GM SUV's. Don't know the exact url for the web page but if you google "Elaine Anne Lift" I think you should be able to find it.

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    • #3
      I've seen the Elaine Anne lift ... lots of wires and things to go wrong. Quite costly as well.

      Honda Element?
      Roses are red. Tacos are enjoyable. Don't blame immigrants, because you're unemployable.

      T-11 Flaccid Paraplegic due to TM July 1985 @ age 12

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      • #4
        Originally posted by lynnifer
        I've seen the Elaine Anne lift ... lots of wires and things to go wrong. Quite costly as well.

        Honda Element?
        I don't want to drive from my wc. I don't think there is any lift to put my rigid chair in a vehicle. What is the Elaine Anne lift?
        Aerodynamically, the bumble bee shouldn't be able to fly, but the bumble bee doesn't know that, so it goes on flying anyways--Mary Kay Ash

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        • #5
          What about the mazda5. There is a thread around here about it. Similar in size, but low enough to transfer. Doesn;t look like a huge deal to pull chair in, and that could be automated probably with just a ramp, no lift.

          (That is what I am thinking about next. t7-8, 50 years old with a bad shoulder. Worried a bit about 10 years out)



          found it /forum/showthread.php?t=93560&highlight=mazda5
          T7-8 since Feb 2005

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          • #6
            We have a 2008 Mazda 5. I am now looking into hand controls and PT will be helping learn the transfer. Our family of five went to Florida and back (with a car top carrier) just fine. It is smaller than a mini-van but the transfer and price sold us. We paid around $21,000 for it-no leather but sunroof, 6CD player, etc.

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            • #7
              You know I love my soccer mom van. Recently, Jus, Jake and I went down to Dallas to see my granddaughter. Jake was in the back, computer plugged in writing a paper. Jus was driving. Jake needed help, so I squeezed past my w/chair and sat down next to him. All our bags were in the far back! It dawned on me...I wouldn't change a thing about this vehicle.

              I can carry a wheelchair, a 14 year old and a surfboard. Or a wheelchair, a 22 year old, a 14 year old and fishing poles. Or Steve, me, those 2 kids, a 5 year old, a wheelchair and a dog in his bed. With all our bags, natch. The seats all fold in, endless configurations.

              All this works well, for long distances, quite comfortably. It drives really well. Front wheel drive. It's comfortable to drive, cushy seats. I actually bought an American van because the interiors were just cushy and luxe. Plug-ins everywhere, for computers, dvd's, coolers, cell phone charging.

              Steve has that big Ram 4X4, and I hate going distances in it. I need help in and out. Chair has to be in back. No space in the cab. Can't reach the back seat from the front. If you need something, it's probably in the far back anyway. It's a wrestling match.

              Soccer moms are smart!
              Blog:
              Does This Wheelchair Make My Ass Look Fat?

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              • #8
                I just bought a Mini Van from the Rollx Company in Minnesota. So far no problems with it. It was a used 2007 Dodge Grand Caravan SXT with 6500 miles. It has a power transfer seat.
                The URL is: www.rollxvans.com
                Take a look at their website or call 1-800-956-6668 and ask for Matt. Tell him Bob told you call.

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by betheny

                  I can carry a wheelchair, a 14 year old and a surfboard. Or a wheelchair, a 22 year old, a 14 year old and fishing poles. Or Steve, me, those 2 kids, a 5 year old, a wheelchair and a dog in his bed. With all our bags, natch. The seats all fold in, endless configurations.
                  This makes me think of one of those magazine ads, showing all the possible seating setups .....
                  T7-8 since Feb 2005

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                  • #10
                    Hi November,

                    I have a Toyota Sienna "Rampvan" with the power fold out ramp and a power transfer seat base under the factory driver seat. Even with my powerchair, there is still room for a couple of riders in the back seat. The power rear door (hatch) makes loading groceries or whatever easy.

                    I didn't think I would like it as much as I do But being able to simply push a button on the remote and have the door open, the ramp fold out, and the van lower to the ground from 30 or 40 feet away is pretty darn nice IMHO. I am inside and out of the weather in just a few seconds

                    Good luck in your quest!

                    Ron

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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by sjean423
                      This makes me think of one of those magazine ads, showing all the possible seating setups .....
                      After I wrote it, I realized I forgot 2 teenagers, dog, wheelchair and 4-wheeler!
                      Blog:
                      Does This Wheelchair Make My Ass Look Fat?

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                      • #12
                        If you are considering a van but would consider a truck, check out a Ryno Truck. My son is getting the Dodge 2500 mega cab with a UVL lift and the drivers seat that will come all the way to the back of the cab to transfer into. They even put in 2 or 3 pull down back seats in since they remove the back seats for the wheelchair to roll in. The UVL will be on the rear passenger side. REALLY NICE OPTION for a guy who DOES NOT want to look like a soccer mom in a van. Good luck

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                        • #13
                          I am in love with my Scion XB

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                          • #14
                            Originally posted by Rononwheels
                            Hi November,

                            I have a Toyota Sienna "Rampvan" with the power fold out ramp and a power transfer seat base under the factory driver seat. Even with my powerchair, there is still room for a couple of riders in the back seat. The power rear door (hatch) makes loading groceries or whatever easy.

                            I didn't think I would like it as much as I do But being able to simply push a button on the remote and have the door open, the ramp fold out, and the van lower to the ground from 30 or 40 feet away is pretty darn nice IMHO. I am inside and out of the weather in just a few seconds

                            Good luck in your quest!

                            Ron

                            I seen the Toyota at the Chicago Auto Show. I told the dealer he was on drugs for the asking price. They wanted $63,000 plus for a damn mini-van. I went over to the Ford display and Mobility Works was there with a E-250 Conversion fully-loaded for only $50,000. I personally would buy the full-size as there is way more room.

                            Nov- I would reccomend just getting a regular vehicle and not a van. It depends on how good your transfer's are. They have to be quick and smooth. Don't need to be bumping your skin on anything and getting a sore. The van's always have to many problems. Just to many electrical components in the vehicle. Besides, you can pay off a reasonabley priced vehicle (car/truck) in no time.

                            Ed

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                            • #15
                              The Mazda 5 already mentioned here seems like a good one. Seems like an easy one with the wheelchair getting dumped in back with a sliding door. I saw a Nissan Quest (redesigned?) the other day driving past and it didnt look totally lame, I think that also has a driver's sliding door. I'm wondering how high off the ground that one is however. I'd stay away from the 'adapted' stuff, overpriced and of questionable reliability judging from what is reported by various users.

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