Introduction: WheeStroll- Wheelchair Stroller Attachment
**While we have tested this design for strength and stability, if you are building this device you assume all risks involved in using it. We recommend using the device carefully and ALWAYS remove the infant car seat with the child before getting out of the wheelchair to avoid tipping**
This project was designed by Bullis School students to address the needs of a new parent in a wheelchair that would like to go for a stroll with a newborn.
This design uses an infant car seat for safety and simplicity, and the rest of the design can be built with inexpensive tools and materials.
Another design, the WheeStroll Stroller Connector, is a device that can allow a parent to push a stroller with their wheelchair. This device requires two 3D printed parts, but can also be made with inexpensive tools and materials.
If you need assistance when building this device, please feel free to reach out for remote design assistance.
1x 10ft 3/4 inch EMT conduit (approx $9 at Home Depot)
1x 5ft 1/2 inch EMT conduit (approx $4 at Home Depot)
EMT Conduit Cutter (this one from Home Depot will work for $15)
Maker Pipe Connectors for attaching tubing:
6x Maker Pipe T connectors - ($2.95 each)
4x Maker Pipe 45 Degree Connector - ($4.45 each)
Other Parts and tools:
Wheelchair Seat belt - ($14.25)
18 inch x 1 inch Velcro Cable Ties - (Pack of 12 for $6.95)
Infant car seat
Drill with bit for metal
4x 1/2 inch sheet metal screws
Step 1: Step 1: Build the Upper Frame
The goal of this part of the project is to build a strong metal rectangle from EMT conduit that fits the infant car seat. Because different car seats will have different measurements, the instructions for this section allow for adjusting the lengths of conduit pieces to make a secure fit.
1. Place the infant car seat upside down. Cut two lengths of conduit as the sides of the rectangle. They should be a little long as they will be trimmed to size later. They should fit snuggly against the base of the car seat, preferably resting on the bottom surface of the carrying handle attachment.
2. Measure between the outer edges of the side pieces, and cut two lengths of conduit to that length for the front and back. Attach the back and sides of the frame with maker pipe T connectors. Attach the clamp end of the connector to the back and the sleeve end of the connector to the sides.
3.Find the ridge at the back of the car seat base and rest the back conduit securely on it. Identify the best location to rest the front of the frame at the front of the car seat. The frame should touch the car seat at the front, back and sides of the car seat. Attach maker pipe T connectors to both sides of the front conduit. Mark and trim the sides to fit into the sleeves of the T connector. Attach front piece and make fine adjustments as needed for a snug fit.
Step 2: Step 2: Create the Footrest Connectors
1. The footrest connectors will be permanently attached to the footrest of the wheelchair. This connection will work with standard wheelchair footrests with tubing that is ¾ inch diameter. Use a maker pipe 45 inch connector and a 3 inch piece of conduit. The conduit should extend at least 1 inch beyond the connector sleeve. The longer the extension, the more stability can be created.
2. Attach connector and conduit directly to the footrest. The legs of the attachment will slide into this conduit for easy removal and installation.
Step 3: Step 3: Create and Install the Legs
In this step we will create the legs of the attachment. To do this we will screw together a piece of 3/4 inch conduit with a piece of 1/2 inch conduit inside of it. The1/2 inch conduit with extend down and slide into the footrest connector. This will allow the attachment to be attached and removed easily by the user.
1. Cut two pieces of conduit to 19 inches in length. These can be shortened later if needed. Cut two pieces of the ½ inch conduit to 15 inches. Place the ½ inch conduit in the footrest connector until it has been inserted as far as it can go. Mark this point on both pieces.
2. Drill a hole at the base of the ¾ inch legs. Slide the ½ inch tube into the outer leg up to the mark. Drill through the outer hole to create a hole on the inner tube. Screw these together with ½ inch sheet metal screws. Note: only drill through one side of the tube. Drill a second hole midway up the leg through both tubes. Screw them together.
3. Attach 45 degree connectors to the top of each leg and connect them to the sides of the frame. Place the connectors as close to the back of the frame as possible, and make adjustments forward as needed.
Step 4: Step 4: Add Safety Attachments
In this step you will attach the wheel chair seat belt which will be used to secure the infant car seat to the structure. We will also loop velcro cable ties around the front of the frame for added stability.
1. Add two maker pipe T connectors to the frame, in front of the leg attachments points, with the sleeve facing up. Tighten only a small amount.
2. Place the car seat securely into the frame. Slide the T connectors around until they make secure contact with the car seat. They should be placed in front of the carrying handle base. Tighten a little more to hold in place, but not all the way.
3. Place the end of the seat belt latch between the sleeve parts of the T connector and insert all the way. Tighten the connector to clamp the seat belt in place. Fold the seat belt buckle at the base of the sewn portion of the belt. Insert the buckle side into the other T connector and tighten the connector to clamp it in place.
4. Loop the velcro cable ties around the front of the frame. These will be looped around the wheelchair frame for added stability.
Step 5: Step 5: Make Adjustments
Now that all of the parts of the WheeStroll Stroller Attachment are complete, you can make adjustments for your wheelchair and fit. Wheelchairs vary in width, footrest configuration and other factors, so it is important that the device is adjusted for fit and comfort of the user.
Sitting in the chair, place the device in the footrest connectors. Use an allen wrench to slightly loosen the maker pipe connectors at the footrest and where the legs attach to the frame. DO NOT adjust the upper frame itself unless it is not make secure contact with the car seat.
Swivel the footrest connectors so the legs can slide smoothly in and out. Slide the frame forward or back as needed for fit and comfort. To reduce the chances of tipping, place the car seat as close to the user as possible. Remember, ALWAYS remove the child and car seat from the device before getting out of the chair. Failing to do this may result in the wheelchair tipping forward.
If needed, you can also shorten the legs be removing them from the upper frame and cutting the conduit. It is better to adjust the height by sliding the upper frame towards the user, but some chairs may require shorter legs.
Step 6: Step 6: Take It Out for a Stroll!
Buckle your child into the car seat and place it in the WheeStroll. Secure the car seat with the buckle and attach the velcro straps to the wheelchair frame.
Start out on relatively flat and smooth ground until you are comfortable with the WheeStroll being attached to your wheelchair. The added weight at the front of the chair can make going downhill difficult. Until you feel confident in the use of the device, start slow and be careful.