In the developing world, three-wheeled wheelchairs are a popular chair to manage the rough terrain. The frames are sturdy enough to handle a bumpy road and having three supports instead of four keeps the chair more stable. However, the center rod that attaches the third wheel makes it so that the four wheeled wheelchair folding design cannot be implemented in the three-wheeled chair. The current design has a hinge that allows the long rod with the third wheel to be folded under the main frame, but the chair still cannot fold to the size of comparable four wheeled wheelchairs. Because the inability to fold limits the users ability to take public transportation, we are designing a new frame that will allow three-wheeled wheelchairs to fold small enough to be used on public transportation.
The current design for the folding three wheeled wheelchair has a hinge on the front rod that allows the long third wheel to fold 180 degrees under the wheelchair. The wheels are removable, allowing the wheelchair to fold to a smaller size without collapsing the frame. Drawbacks with this design are that the parts are removable, leading to less stability and the possibility of lost parts.
Top Left: The bottom of the collapsed wheelchair. Top Right: Unfolded hinge. Bottom: Extended hinge.
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