Which wheelchair for Italy cobblestones?

mill4023

DIS Veteran
Joined
Feb 16, 2005
Hi,
My wife can walk short distances and can go up and down steps when needed, but uses a wheelchair for any longer distances. Right now, she has a cheap standard wheelchair.
We are headed to Italy in a week, where we will visit Rome, Florence, and Venice.
We want to get her a better quality wheelchair before our trip.

I was looking at the Karman Ergo line, but then found some information on the Roughrider Whirlwind, which looks good for rough terrain.
This one:
https://whirlwindwheelchair.org/product/roughrider/
For the Karman's, maybe something like this:
https://www.karmanhealthcare.com/product/s-ergo-305/

Any thoughts on the best chair to handle the cobblestone streets we will encounter?
 

Staren

Mouseketeer
Joined
May 24, 2017
I'm glad you're looking at more rugged options. I've had my share of basic hospital grade chairs shake apart on me with regular use. If at all possible I'd suggest at least looking at a non-adjustable rigid chair. Even given the transport challenges with those. Though that would be more expensive than you are looking at, and would take time. But a chair with any kind of adjustability, and especially a folding chair is going to take a beating on terrain like that. Since it will be used for a vacation, one of these chairs should hold up, but I wouldn't want to think about the adjustments you'll have to make when you get home.
 

mamabunny

DIS Veteran
Joined
Oct 11, 2012
Make sure you take a small set of tools with you in the event anything shakes loose... Allen wrenches are especially hard to source when traveling.

I'm glad you're looking at more rugged options. I've had my share of basic hospital grade chairs shake apart on me with regular use. If at all possible I'd suggest at least looking at a non-adjustable rigid chair. Even given the transport challenges with those. Though that would be more expensive than you are looking at, and would take time. But a chair with any kind of adjustability, and especially a folding chair is going to take a beating on terrain like that. Since it will be used for a vacation, one of these chairs should hold up, but I wouldn't want to think about the adjustments you'll have to make when you get home.
 

cobright

DIS Veteran
Joined
Jan 6, 2013
The karman you linked is significantly lighter. The whirlwind seems to be highly adjustable. Like to a level a tinker like me thinks is excessive. I toy around with power chair mods mostly and value a simple design with fewer moving parts. But I dont know how well that philosophy applies here.
 

cobright

DIS Veteran
Joined
Jan 6, 2013
Make sure you take a small set of tools with you in the event anything shakes loose... Allen wrenches are especially hard to source when traveling.
And ball headed Allen wrenches make all the difference if you have to tighten something yourself; like while still seated in the chair.
 

Staren

Mouseketeer
Joined
May 24, 2017
The karman you linked is significantly lighter. The whirlwind seems to be highly adjustable. Like to a level a tinker like me thinks is excessive. I toy around with power chair mods mostly and value a simple design with fewer moving parts. But I dont know how well that philosophy applies here.
I think it makes all the difference in a case like this. Simple and as few moving parts as possible is my philosophy, especially for unknown terrain. I’m looking at possibly replacing my rigid chair with a new design rigid folder from a company called Motion Composites. The convenience would be nice, but they still need to convince me it will hold up to real day to day use.
 

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