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Gen 2 prototype on a public ramp
Over 150 million people use manual wheelchairs daily.
Rims attached to large wheels drive manual wheelchairs. This 1881 innovation continues today. Rim drive’s advantage is it is lightweight, simple, and responsive to user inputs. Rim drive’s major disadvantage is it hurts all who use it. Hands are the clutch and brakes of rim drive wheelchairs. The pain is from the repetitive beating that the users’ hands must bear.
Today's manual wheelchairs are lighter, sleeker, and the seats are more comfortable. The problem is, modern wheelchairs continue to use the same old rim drive from 1881. Innovators have introduced lever drive options to reduce the repetitive stresses on the rider. Studies funded by the National Institute of Health have shown that when the rider transfers power to the wheels through levers, stress injuries are almost eliminated. However, levers have not been adopted because of functional deficits. A lever drive mechanism must not add much weight, and must maintain the instantaneous control aggressive users demand. With the LRM transmitting rider inputs from levers to wheels, the spontaneous control is retained, power is increased, and injury eliminated. Even the most aggressive riders can do more with less risk of stress injury.
The LRM applied to the i5d wheelchair makes it possible to climb a ramp that is 2x the legal code and will not roll backward between strokes.Watch the video at the right.
A better system must take the stress off the users’ hands with-out compromising the optimum features of their wheelchair.
Procubed’s Linear to Rotary Motion mechanism (LRM) is the key to eliminating the pain. A better manual wheelchair design must keep the good things about the old rim drive and remove the bad; the painful stress injuries.
The levers on the i5d wheelchair are as connected to the wheels as the riders’ hands are to the old rim drive. From the levers, the rider can instantly shift from forward to reverse. Opposing wheel rotation steering is as easy as it is with rim drive. Braking works through the levers. The levers connect the rider to forward, reverse, stop, and go without the need for gripping.
go to LRM page
Wounded US soldiers like Matt, (pictured) and others who have tested the i5d Wheelchair, love this concept! Our goal is to make and give away i5d Wheelchairs to Veterans who will then help us spread the word about this awesome mobile device.
Matt is testing one of the early prototypes at Walter Reed, Bethesda MD thanks to our friends in the local chapter of the 82nd All Airborne. Visit their site to see the awesome work they do. Click their logo.
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This a test of the i5d at University of Wisconsin Parkside
Here is a little history of prototypes 2012- 2014
In addition to eliminating the pain from over stressing the hands, the LRM based drive doubles the power to the wheels by eliminating the gaps in torque, unavoidable with the rim drive from the 19th century. The increased efficiency results in easier use for longer periods of time. The i5d wheelchair helps the user maintain fitness by increasing the muscle mass that powers the wheels while eliminating the pain and risk of stress injury.