Update: In the past few months we have optimized the design of the wheelchair. Some of the model files have changed. If you plan to build the wheelchair please feel free to contact me, I can help you selecting the best model for your needs.

A few months ago we discovered Luisa, a handicapped puppy who was born without forelegs on the website of an animal protection organisation (www.pro-tier.de) and decided to build a 3D-printed wheelchair for her. In the meantime we finished the wheelchair and have adopted Luisa. This project is open-source and we want to give everybody the opportunity to help a handicapped animal with this instructable and the 3D-Files we uploaded with it.

The Wheelchair comes in two sizes (The bigger size consists of several parts, so that it can be printed on smaller printers as well) and is adjustable in every possible aspect (width, height,camber,...).

All printed parts were printed by my company (www.multec.de) on our biggest 3d printer (Multirap M420). Of course the files can be printed on any printer, as long as the print area is big enough.

Step 1: What You Need

Here's what you need to build a wheelchair:

- a 3D printer for the 3D printed parts

- aluminum tubes 18x1,5 mm (lengths depend on the size of the dog, you better just buy ~3 meters and saw/cut it at home to the correct dimensions)

- tube connectors (e.g. from KIPP http://www.kippwerk.de, 4x K0485.18, 4x K0487.18, 2x K0472.1818, 4xK0486.18, 4xK0488.18_a, 12x K0494.018150)

- wheels: We chose wheels with a diameter of 250mm, these are usually used for bicycle trailers or buggies. Cost ~30 euro a pair. Make sure to buy tires with tube, because they absorb shock energy and tire pressure can be adjusted to different underground conditions.

- optional: a Third (smaller) wheel to help the dog as long as he is not used to balance the chair.

- an axle to connect the wheels to the wheelchair. We used a simple threaded rod. What you specifically need depends on your selected wheels. Depending on your choice you might as well need an additional printed adapter to connect the axle to the aluminum tubes

- A soft inlay (e.g. Foam) to make the wheelchair more comfortable for the dog

- Fasteners/belts (2x) to make sure the dog doesn't fall out of his wheelchair.

- bolts and nuts (M5, M4 in different lenghts)

We spent around 130€ for all needed parts.

Step 2: Print!

Print the attached files.Make sure to enable support-structures for overhanging areas. Since the parts are pretty big, i would recommend you to use 'fast' printer settings (big layer heights) and a heated printing bead to prevent warping problems. Also, I used PLA-Filament instead of ABS, because there are less problems with warping. Make sure that you don't run out of filament while printing.

Note: There are 2 versions. For small dogs print "printed frame Puppy", which is one part.

For big dogs print printed_frame_right, printed_frame_left, mountingplate_small and mountingplate.

If you want to add an additional wheel, make sure to print mounting_device_high as well.

Step 3: Assemble!

Assemble the parts according to the pictures above

Step 4: Adjust!

Adjust the assembled chair, so that it fits well. Adjust camber angle, caster angle , ground clearance, width, heights and lenght

Step 5: Train!

Let your dog train with the wheelchair. The following is the most important part of this instruction:
Do not force the dog to use the wheelchair, make the training as comfortable as possible (read: use dog treats). Though giving a new level of freedom, the wheelchair might be a strange object to the dog at first. Let him get used to it slowly and he will learn to use and like it.

If you have any questions or need assistance building a wheelchair, feel free to contact me.

In case you want to read more about Luisa, you can follow her on facebook: https://www.facebook.com/luisas.tagebuch or on http://luisas-blog.de/

<p>Made a modified version of the original one for an awesome dog named Tucker. He has some practice to do but he &quot;gets it&quot; and I think he'll do just fine. This was an awesome project to work on and wow do I feel good.</p>
<p>This is so awesome - I love it! </p><p>I'd love to learn more about Tucker's progress!</p>
<p>This is Really Awesome - we are a Non-Profit working with over 145 Rescue &amp; Shelter organizations in Texas and we have been thinking about starting a Wheelchair loaner program for years now but this 3D printing idea opens a whole new opportunity for so many in need. We are thinking about purchasing a printer and making wheelchairs with front, back and all 4 wheels do you have any suggestions, ideas or advice for us: ) Thank you for all you do and for Helping Us Help Them! Judy &amp; The RPAL Team</p>
<p>Hey Judy,<br>Sorry, I havent seen your comment earlier. If it's still relevant feel free to write me a message and I'll be happy to help you :)</p>
<p>Great Job on this one !!!!, Going to give it a try, just a problem to find those tube connectors, is there a way i could print those, maybe there are some files for that, would be handy :)</p>
<p>Hey there,<br>where are you from?<br>I wouldnt recommend printing these, since they really need to handle high forces. If you want to contact me, in the meantime I made some improvements to the print files.</p>
<p>I need to make one of these for a small goat. Thank you for the parts listing and advice.</p>
We have a dog in a rescue here that is only 2 1/2 weeks old and 1.5 pounds... Can this be adapted to such small sizes?
<p>Hey there,</p><p>I doubt it would be useful to use this design on a very small scale. What size do you expect will the dog have when he is adult?</p>
By what Im hearing, its a chihuahua... So small (~10 pounds?)
Congrats on the win..... And you are awesome for helping a fellow earthling..... What kind of 3D Pinter is that..... We are adopting a dog who was born with out front legs tomorrow and I want to make him one of these..... I'm thinking about buying a delta printr 3D Printer Kit..... Hopefully it'll get the job done......
<p>Hey there,</p><p>Where are you from? How big will the dog be? I made some changes to the initial design to make the wheelchair fit perfectly for Luisa. Maybe your dog has about the same size?</p><p>I did the printing with a Multec M420. If you have no experience with 3d printing it might be a tough road to print huge parts like the chest plates. Maybe I can assist you with printing as well. Please contact me</p>
<p>Hey,</p><p>I just wanted to give a short <br> update on Luisa and this project. First of all: Thanks to all of you <br>who voted for this instructable, the judges seems to have liked it as <br>well. It won a prizes in all 3 contests. Thanks!</p><p>Luisa <br>is doing very fine and she enjoys her &quot;new mobility&quot;. We are constantly <br>adapting the wheelchair design to fit her needs. If you want to follow <br>her development you might want to check <a href="https://www.facebook.com/luisas.tagebuch" rel="nofollow"> www.facebook.com/luisas.tagebuch </a> , there is also a new clip of her running through the grass.</p><p>I'd <br> be very happy if this instructable could help other dogs, please feel <br>free to contact me, if you know someone who could need help with this. <br>I'd be happy to assist.</p>
<p>I absolutely love this! My dog doesn't need it, but thanks for posting it. Luisa is beautiful. She's lucky to have such loving and kind parents. God Bless All of You!</p><p>LiveCrafts :D</p>
Congrats! Luisa is very lucky to have pawrents like you
<p>3/3 contest wins! Congrats. You really deserve it :)</p>
<p>thank you!</p>
Good for you, great build
good innovation
<p>Congratulations on winning grand prize.</p>
<p>Conguratiolations on the big win, well deserved ... keep up the good work...</p>
<p>Wow, here is a great use of a 3D printer in the most humane way possible and congratulations on winning the grand prize!</p>
<p>she is lovely glad some one loves her</p>
<p>awww i voted beacause its cute</p>
I hope you win as this truly a brilliant instructable!
<p>What an inspiring instructable!</p>
<p>Awwww! Such a cute project, and great execution. Nice job on this!</p>
<p>your video format is unreadable, pity really.</p>
<p>Great great job! Very impressive.</p>
<p>Anyone who makes this: PLEASE be very careful about introducing any spinal curvature to your dog. work with your vet and be ready to make adjustments to the rig. If you introduce any curvature, you're likely to create a great deal of pain for the dog and introduce new long term issues. </p><p>OP: Really nice job! It looks really great.</p>
<p>You ! are AWSOME !</p><p>Great Instructable.</p>
<p>This is a beautiful project, and that pooch is ready for some off-roading with those huge tires!</p>
<p>Thanks! </p><p>The Wheels might look too big on first view, but I believe bigger wheels are better for two reasons: They provide better damping and it's no problem to move through high grass and over steps.</p>
<p>That's kind of what I figured. Nice work.</p>
<p>looks a great practical instructable. </p>
<p>Very impressed! That is how to &quot;pay it forward&quot; </p>
<p>That's nice !</p>
<p>Thank you for creating this, and thank you for caring for this dog. </p>
Awesome just awesome. I hope this helps out many pet owners
<p>Truly remarkable!</p><p>About 40 years ago, I made a similar thing for a dog who had lost the use of his rear legs.</p><p>The dog's name was Diana ... lived for about a year with the &quot;wheelchair&quot;</p>
<p>This is an amazing project! And your dog is super lovely and cute!! :D You made a great thing, this is true love for your dog and the instructable is really cool! Big respect for you. I also voted for you in all the contests. :)</p>
<p>Its things like this that restore my home in humanity. Fantastic job.:-)</p>
<p>Some time <br>ago, walking on a street of Thessaloniki (Greece), I saw this dog (in the photos) <br>walking with its owner (a lady). She told me, her dog fell off a balcony (12m <br>high) on the street and hurt its spine, resulting disability to move the back <br>legs. The veterinarian along with a blacksmith constructed the cart, now <br>supporting the poor dog. Ever since I never saw again the dog and the lady &hellip; I <br>hope they&rsquo;re ok.</p><p>God bless <br>you <a href="https://www.instructables.com/member/aimzzz/" rel="nofollow"><strong>aimzzz</strong></a> for your sophisticated work and all who care <br>for handicapped animals &hellip;</p>
<p>Hey al4by,</p><p>Thank you for sharing your story. Though I feel sorry for the dog, that he hurt his spine, it makes me happy to see, that he received assistance! It hope he gets along well. </p>
<p>You, my friend, changed that pup's life in a good way. Love those little folded ears too!</p>
<p>Thank you very much.</p><p>Her ears are really very cute, We fell in love when we saw her first picture (attached)</p>
You are awesome!!!! great project....lucky dog ?
<p>I hope so ;-)</p>

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