This project is a simple and inexpensive transfer system that allows a wheelchair user (or any individual with mobility issues) to easily be transferred from their wheelchair to a bath for bathing purposes with the assistance from another individual (or by themselves, depending on the situation).
Before this project was given to us the process of Rosa giving her daughter Vanessa a bath was quite a labor intense process by where she needed to physically lift her into and out of the bath. This did not only put unnecessary strain on Rosa’s back but it was also not a completely safe for Vanessa as well. After getting plenty of input from Rosa which included a picture of a preexisting idea that she liked, we began to come up with ideas that we believe best suited her needs.
The system is made of 3 separate pieces:
3) Rolling Platform for the chair
Plywood 1/2" thickness
2 to 3 hinges
Aluminum beach chair
Swievl for a boat seat (can be found at a marine store)
4 Caster Wheels (1/2")
3 Gate latch
Stainless Steel U-Bolt, 1/4"-20 X 1" Thread Length, for 1" OD
C-bar (enough length to run the full length of the platform on both sides)
Enough bolts, washers, and nuts to attach all the nessecary parts
Quoc Vhin for working on this project for 2 quarters
And other Engineering students for their input
Step 1: Cutting the Base to Size
The first step in this project is to get the measurements of your bath's width and height (you want the the width of both the inside/outside walls, the width of the overall tub, and also the height of the tub from outside of the tub). The first base that we used was made of 3/4" plywood that we later would coat with an epoxy resin. The second version we used a corian material that was donated to us by American Marble 1280 N. Melrose Dr. Vista, CA 92083.
The overall length of the base is equal to the overall width of the tub plus the height of the tub.
The width of the base we used 15".
For the hinging aspect of the base, measure from one end of the base (the height of the tub) then make a cut across.
Use either 2 or 3 hinges to attach the two pieces of the base.
Step 2: Drilling the Holes for Attachment of C-bar
In this step you will need to drill the holes according to the drawing provides, there are 9X .25dia. through holes on each side of the platform. Then you need to cut out the center hole in the platform for both drainage and weight reduction.
Step 3: Cutting the Folding Legs
We used 2 table leg hinges to allow the legs to fold up and down. We used simple square legs. Since the legs were the same lenght as the floding extyension, we had to coss the legs because they wouldn't fit if we folded it into the platform.
Step 4: Modify a Pre-existing Folding Chair
You can use an old or new aluminum folding beach chair. We used a chair that had a 3 position back for the comfort of our client, but you can use one that fits your needs best.
The only thing that needs to be done to the chair is for the legs to be cut as short as possible, so that it will easily fit onto the platform.
(We used a simple hack saw to make the cuts)
Step 5: Making Brackets for Latch
The attachment for the chair to the rolling platform will be made by 3 gate latches, these latches can be bought at any local hardware store. The latches themselves will be attached to the chair, these attachement will be made by bolting the latches to a metal bracket and then U-bolts will mount the brackets to the chair. The rods will be attached to the rolling platform, 1 and then 2 on the opposing side.
Step 6: Cutting the Bottom Base of Rolling Platform
The bottom base can either be made out of plywood, corian, aluminum. However, if it is made out of plywood, then the piece needs to be coated the same as the base piece.
The bottom base is used to attach the 4 caster wheels and the swivel.
The overall dimension is 14-1/4"W and 16-5/8"H
Step 7: The Top Base of the Rolling Platform
The top base can either be made out of plywood, corian, aluminum. However, if it is made out of plywood, then the piece needs to be coated the same as the base piece.
The Overall dimension of the top base is 16.25 inch X 15.00 inch
Step 8: Coating Anything That Is Not Water-proof
At this point depending on the types of material that has been used, you may need to coat your material with an epoxy coating (especially if you have used any plywood).
Step 9: The C-bar Saftey System
You will need 2 peices of C-Bar that spans the full length of the platform. Lay the 2 peices so that you can mark the postions of the holes that you have already drilled on the platform. As well mark were the cut that needs to be made so that the platform can still fold. when drilling the holes, drill through both the top and bottom of the C-bar.
Step 10: Finishing
Most every thing will be attached with bolts and nuts, the size of the bolts should be determined on the hole and thickness of the material that is needed to be attached. Will all the sharp corners need to be taken care of (filled, sanded, grinded...etc)
See our video on youtube at http://youtu.be/SVhqCPRU6U0
Faculty Advisor: Dr. Landsberger
Cal State Los Angeles Rehabilitation Lab
Other ME students for the participation
Rosa and Vanessa Jimenaez for the inspiration behind the project.
Contact Information: Erich Fischer, firstname.lastname@example.org and Prof Sam Landsberger, email@example.com
Also an youtube video can be viewed at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SVhqCPRU6U0