Reply To: Effect of tactile paving on steering of a Whill powerchair

  • schroth-sensei

    June 21, 2023 at 11:45 am

    I feel like this chair could of been designed by a company with new innovations and investors in mind first, users second (my opinion, would love to discuss with the manufacturer). Possibly that Engineers made it but would of benefited with more input from people with disabilities. I’m not saying they are bad, but they may not have taken all the decades of lessons learned by leading wheelchair manufacturers who have received mountains of feedback. From the look of the Whill, it may be great for in-home use, short trips to the market, and generally flat areas (perhaps desired intention?). I had a chair that was good for this too (a 6-wheel setup with middle tires driving it, turned on a dime), but generally it had very little power to overcome bumps of just a few cm or even slopes that really shouldn’t be an issue. I believe it may be due to the same issue as the Whill, smaller motor (no doubt to keep weight and cost down) and smaller tires, which hamper the drivers desired power and control. Manual wheelchairs generally still have a similar issue, small thin front tires that are hard plastic that often can be stopped or redirected with even just a small rock (so many times in my youth this happened with my brother pushing me around), so it is something you end up anticipating when you use it long enough. Or, like me, I purposely got my new chair (Permobil F3) with a front wheel drive that are bigger tires than the back, so it’ll climb over things and pull the back tires over bumps with little issues. So Whill may be one of those good for situational use, I would definitely recommend a different chair for a mega-city like Tokyo.

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