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burnlast
02-27-2003, 11:34 PM
One of the kids (15 year old)down the street is in a wheel chair(paralyzed from the waist down) and has been hanging out in my home shop(with his mothers approval).I enjoy the company & his deburring and assembly help.I can tell he would really like to do more than run a file.I've tried to come up with a way to make the machines more "handicap" accessable for him, but not make it unaccessable for for me.The machines in the shop are an Excello mill and a 12x36 Springfield lathe(very old flat belt drive).Any ideas or are we both dreaming???Thanks ahead of time for any ideas or comments.


Burnlast!!!!!

mbensema
02-27-2003, 11:46 PM
My nephew is in a wheelchair too and I have wondered about how to make a shop more accessable. I think the best way might be to raise the seat on the wheelchair, kind of like the booster chairs for little kids, that way you don't have anything in your way and he is high enough to see what is happening. That might be a bit unstable, depending on the kind of chair he has. As for changing speeds on the lathe, I'm not familiar with your lathe, but that might be a bit difficult for him to get around the side to change speeds if that is how yours is done, maybe outfit it with a VFD instead.
I'll ask my brother-in-law about any organizations for handicapped people that may have info on this, I'm sure someone has come up with some inventive methods.

Mike

Al Messer
02-27-2003, 11:49 PM
Talk to a counselor at your local Vocational Rehabilitation office. I'm sure they would have some positive ideas--maybe even provide him with some special equiptment. Good luck and may God bless you for your interest in him.

NAMPeters
02-28-2003, 01:34 AM
Burnlast you are a good sport.

Just remember that his being in a chair his face will tend to be closer to the work so make sure he wears a good face shield at all times. His working with the machinery is going to be a trial and error process, just remember his problem is a physical limitation and not one of brain power. No offense intended but so many people see a "handicapped" person and think they are stupid, a lesson I have learned through many bitter experiences.

Good luck and safety first.

------------------
Neil Peters

[This message has been edited by NAMPeters (edited 02-28-2003).]

lightswitch
02-28-2003, 03:55 AM
Most definatly coolest thing ive heard all day. Not jsut because hes in a wheelchair, but because hes a kid, & that takes pateince to deal with other peoples kids.

darryl
02-28-2003, 04:14 AM
I agree that raising the seat on the wheelchair would make it unstable. How about a scissor lift on a small scale? My dad had one made to lift motorcycles to a comfortable working height, about 2' or so max. It had a base about 2'x4', which stayed flat as it was raised. It was on casters. It also had mounting bars to fix the bike to, possibly these could be used to hold the wheelchair once it's on the platform. Collapsed, it was about 6" high, and had a short 'runway' to enable pushing the bike up onto it. There was a typical screw jack to do the work of raising it. It might be possible for the user to crank himself up to height, and down again, so he wouldn't be trapped 2' in the air if noone else was there. He could likely propel himself around using a broomstick or similar. I can imagine that something like this would be handy in the home, not only the shop, and the casters could be upgraded to work on carpet and lino without damaging either. If I were building it, I'd make sure it would get through doorways, and around corners, hallways into rooms, etc.

Alistair Hosie
02-28-2003, 05:35 AM
This is a wonderful idea and you are obviously blessed with this opportunity to help this young boy.Strangely enough I have been reading articles about several people who have made or altered lathes for wood turning.As you know this would be very much more difficult as you have to twist your body to facilitate the turning with wood , and traversing process which is not so neccessery on the metal working lathe as the saddle etc is much more controllable.They managed it. I even read about a man who has learned to turn the most beautiful bowls and he is totally blind so I hope this gives you inspiration to go further with this young lad.I am overjoyed to hear of these stories as I am sure we all are.I have built a special chair which I copied from an article in a magazine which showed a sliding chair which is on a frame and fitted with rollers and traverses side to side .these rollers are buiilt cleverly into the frame at the top end and the base has absolutely no rollers at all making it very stable this is very useful to me as I have a spinal injury and cannot stand for a great length of time. However it may not be suitable enough (AS IT IS IN IT'S PRESENT FORM ) to offer the support neccessery for this lad, alsothis design may not be required as the work at the lathe as I said is different between wood and metal.I have photos somewhere if you want me to look them out or the original article I will be glad to help but I can say this can be done with a little thought good luck and god's blessings on you for your effort to date I am proud of you and this letter has made my day.
I had an older brother who was mentally handicapped (sadly now dead) and he was sent to a school where all they did all day was make things (small rugs etc )I got the shock of my life while I was living in Germany to receive a letter from him albeit in very childish handwriting at the age of over forty he had gone to a learning centre and was learning to read and write for the first time.In the old days here all the children who hand these difficulties were all lumped together in the same school. The result of this was that my brother had the ability all along and was never given the oportunity to find out, as he was classed with people with much greater difficulties than himself and that's how it was in those days, so keep going you will win over in the end . best wishes Alistair

Paul Gauthier
02-28-2003, 06:46 PM
Many years ago I saw a lathe that was made to be operated by a person in a seated position. The problem with this is where to put ones legs. This lathe was much like a desk in that it had a space beneath. Also the ways were slanted toward the operator. All levers for speed changing etc. could be reached while seated. It was not specificaly designed for someone in a wheel chair but would easily have accomidated one. Alas I do not remember the name of the manufacturer, it was too long ago. After looking at my Clausing I can see that with a sawzall and about 15 minuits I could make it wheelchair accessable but cutting out the cabinet beneath the chip tray which is now the coolant tank.
Food for thought.



------------------
Paul G.

billr
03-01-2003, 11:01 AM
years ago i knew a machinist in San Diego who was in a wheelchair. he did a lot of work for me and i watched him a lot but i cannot recall what special arrangements were made in the shop for him.

this guy was GOOD. i wish i knew what hw forgot.

good luck with this. i admire you.
bill

davestea
03-01-2003, 03:53 PM
10 points for your effort - sounds like a neat kid too.

Several years ago I saw a tv program that started with a person standing in and strapped to what looked like a standard 2-wheel package dolly but it had struts to the rear (triangular setup) with casters on them. Basically a 4-wheel dolly if you will. This allowed the person to stand up and be held upright to work.

There was a progression in the program to a more sophisticated device to allow handicapped people to work in an upgright position. The final device I believe was an electric wheel chair that changed from sitting down to standing up. It required straps around the calves and thighs and waist for that person. Maybe he might not need the waist strap (??).

Maybe you and this boy can fabricate (together?) something like this for him to work in and not have to modify the shop. Can he move from his wheel chair to a rolling device such as described above (the dolly)? Maybe some kind of hand-crank to chain to each of the wheels so he can move around on his own?

The dolly device did, and would have to have some back angle (leaning back) to help hold him up and be stable. Weight could even be added to the rear wheel section for stability in the shop.

Let me know if you need any more information.



------------------
Dave - Castro Valley CA - Smithy, Select Mill, Atlas 6" and Unimat lathe

davestea
03-01-2003, 04:01 PM
BTW Burnlast -

Dreaming ? Sure you are - and I hope you both don't stop - without those kinds of dreams where would either of you be - or get?

I think I wrote the previous post with enough info and details to get you thinking and started on such a project. For testing his abilities I'd suggest you start with a dolly if you have one and put some cardboard pad/supports for strapping in his legs and then stand him up - you'll likely have to have him nearly laying down to get started.

I'd like it if you would keep me informed of any progress. I've done some adaptive work for a couple handicapped friends and myself but nothing like this.

Write me off line anytime - davestea@ev1.net



------------------
Dave - Castro Valley CA - Smithy, Select Mill, Atlas 6" and Unimat lathe

Dave Opincarne
03-01-2003, 05:43 PM
Lots of good suggestion so I won't waste bandwidth with redundent suggestions, but will make good use of it to offer two " 'atta boy's " to you. One for your effort to reach out to someone elses child and one for being so willing to accomidate him. Way to go!

ibewgypsie
03-01-2003, 08:42 PM
Simple raised platform in front of the machines.
Maybe a 2x8 box with plywood on it? cut at a angle to roll up on.
We use this method here at one time.
My neighbor is in a wheelchair, the other problems exist, like learning some limitations. (watching my neighbor catch himself on fire welding)
But, I have saw some excellent Cad-cam machinist in wheelchairs. No limits on the programs they can write, the loading of the machines are small stuff.
Can I help any?

JoelK
03-01-2003, 10:59 PM
I saw a guy at Grizzly in a wheelchair buying tooling (had his wife carrying a milling vice for him!)and later noticed him at the Cabin Fever show. I thought to myself this would be a great hobby for someone in that situation. With the machining skills someone could create almost anything they needed to help themselves and others adapt. I had a classmate who was in a wheelchair after a high school car accident. He had a very successful business making/selling equipment to help handicapped people.

One thing I would be concerned about is chips, hot or otherwise. If they landed in his lap, he might not notice them. Getting them into cloths or shoes would also pose a problems with cuts or getting them embedded so good protection would definitely be in order.

burnlast
03-01-2003, 11:17 PM
We were out in the shop this afternoon.Played around with a few ideas presented here.some ideas show a little promise,many thanks for the support & to all who have contributed.We came up with an idea of putting some out riggers(for lack of a better term) on a frame, that would plug into his chair.This frame would have 2 jack cylinders (like what is on an engine hoist)to raise or lower to approprate height.If need be, he can lower to floor to manuver around.What do you think???

Burnlast!!!!

[This message has been edited by burnlast (edited 03-01-2003).]

burnlast
03-01-2003, 11:36 PM
Joel,
Didn't consider the chip problem.Maybe an apron that is oversized in right places,might also be in order.Thanks.

darryl
03-02-2003, 12:17 AM
Just a couple more brainstorm ideas. I think if it was me, I'd like to be able to manoever around in the raised position, and not have to lower down to change position. One could always grab hold of the lathe bed, or the stand and push yourself around, but eqally important might be to be fixed in position, so you have something to leverage against while operating the machine. Castors with brakes, with extended rods for control of them? Also, is this wheelchair electric? Is it possible to attach four electric 'jacks' ,which become legs when extended- no rolling around this way- maybe rotated through a single motor using bicycle chain and sprockets. Whatever mechanism, it may need to be 'chip proof'. No good if it can get jammed. Something like that could be used anywhere an extra height is needed. Of course, it adds weight to the chair.

krawdad13112
03-02-2003, 09:40 AM
I saw a program a month or two ago about twin girls in Alaska with mobility problems. Their father and his machinist friend eventually developed a different kind of wheel chair thatwas able to raise and lower the girls and was mobile enough for the girls to play effectively with their friends. Check with your PBS station to see if you could see a copy of this film. You and your young friend might have the basis for a beautiful project. good luck, Kurt

mbensema
03-02-2003, 10:17 AM
What kind of chair does he have? Is it the normal type or the sport version? My nephew has the sport version since he plays basketball and it has casters on the back so that he can't tip backwards, the normal chairs can have those too. The wheels are angled outwards at the bottom to give better stability. Making a seat lift with one of these types of chairs may be a good solution and may not need the stabilizing arms that was mentioned. I hadn't thought of the hot chips, but the apron should be a must. Have you tried calling Quickie, the manufacturer of wheelchairs, for ideas? My nephew is looking into solutions for himself, he has woodshop in school, but can't use most of the tools until someone comes up with a good solution. I think he'll find it, on his 13th birthday he did a 5 mile wheelie in his wheelchair for a Guiness record, with determination like that, the sky is the limit! I'll keep everyone informed about what he comes up with.

Mike

rtremaine
03-04-2003, 04:14 PM
I used to work with an auto mechanic who was confined to a wheelchair. He had modified a wheel chair with a scissor jack similiar to what is described in the post above. The crank linkage had a steering coupler u-joint in it to allow him to operate it. With this device he was able to raise himself to hang over fenders and or the front of vehicles to work on them. Would ask me to test drive his jobs when they were done. Perhaps this would be a good project.

randy t

Guero
03-04-2003, 07:04 PM
burnlast, I certainly cannot offer any advise better than that already offered by the true experts on this forum but I do want to say "God bless you" for your interest in this kid. You may be setting him into a means of him making an independent living, perhaps not as a professional machinist but as an artist... and if not, he'll learn those traits necessary to see him through life - self-discipline, self-confidence, patience, imagination and perserverance... and probably love as well.

Thrud
03-06-2003, 02:48 AM
My lathe is mounted on an IBM line printer stand so I can sit at it. I still cannot stand to use it for very long. In considering the possiblity that I might end up in a wheel chair I looked for ways around still working in the shop. I will be changing my lathe over to a maple top and the Lee valley cast iron legs as they will allow me to roll under far enough to hug and kiss the lathe. The printer stand was salvaged when the 2 ton line printer on top of it was stripped for gold along with the mainframe we purchased. It also allows me to move the lathe out of the way if I have to. That thing is built like a brick ****house! http://bbs.homeshopmachinist.net//biggrin.gif

burnlast
03-06-2003, 06:33 PM
Thanks again everybody,again.

Thrud glad to see your back.You make this board feel like a BS session in a shop,but without having to watch over your shoulder for the forman.

Borrowed a motorcycle/ATV lift a couple of days ago.It shows some promise.Had him jacked up in front of the lathe and he got to make some chips.We turned up one of those Xmas(I can't figure out if we are early or late)ornaments that was in HSM.He went home grinning from ear to ear.Also sent some books home with him to read and to pick out some projects.


The next evening I got a call from his mom.She asked if she could come over and have a talk about Mike.She came over to the shop and thanked me for all I had done.She has also said he has made some dramatic improvements in his hand coordination and his attitude since he has been hanging out down here.She(we) also talked about getting him some tools and possibly a bench top lathe.I think he's well on his way to becoming another home shop machinist.THANKS!!!

Burnlast!!!!!

burnlast
03-06-2003, 06:37 PM
Thanks again everybody,again.

Thrud glad to see your back.You make this board feel like a BS session in a shop,but without having to watch over your shoulder for the forman.

Borrowed a motorcycle/ATV lift a couple of days ago.It shows some promise.Had him jacked up in front of the lathe and he got to make some chips.We turned up one of those Xmas(I can't figure out if we are early or late)ornaments that was in HSM.He went home grinning from ear to ear.Also sent some books home with him to read and to pick out some projects.


The next evening I got a call from his mom.She asked if she could come over and have a talk about Mike.She came over to the shop and thanked me for all I had done.She has also said he has made some dramatic improvements in his hand coordination and his attitude since he has been hanging out down here.She(we) also talked about getting him some tools and possibly a bench top lathe.I think he's well on his way to becoming another home shop machinist.THANKS!!!

Burnlast!!!!!

P.S. You guys are one of the greatest R&D dept. around.

docsteve66
03-07-2003, 12:44 PM
Burnlast you are a fool!!!!! Dont get the kid nor help him get a lathe!!!!. Makke him into YOUR apprentice, clean tools in exchange for tools he needs. Make a vacuum for him to pull and keep the place clean!!!! http://bbs.homeshopmachinist.net//smile.gif

Just kidding, but I suspect he does in fact need YOUR company, listening to you and more especially you listening to him- hopes & dreams exchanged. Maybethe trip down the block- with a place to go, and a freind to see is better than owning his own lathe and staying at home to use it. I was worried about a nieghbor kid, found him a job at a local store when he was maybe 12 years old. I paid his "salary" at first- then owner decidedthe kid was worth the money and paid it himself. Kid was heaalthy, wanted some things real bad- but I damn sure was not going to give him any thing because I think "sharity" ruins the recipetant, and his parents were bums enough already!. "kid" is now in mid forties, still thinnks he started wroking at age 12 sweeping a store with wooden floor and hole you could see the groundthrough= thereby earning his first bike- a bike that he and i assembledfrom wheel, frames etc that he purchased from me and I helped him assemble- He is still a dumb **** (even though he is a well repsected refridgeration man on over theraood trucks with several men working for him) cause he still laughs about how I charged him for the bike parts- I got most of his money just enough left over for a little fun- but he says it was woorth while caaause he really wanted that bike!!!!. He neverfiguredthat I knew almost exactly what he had in his pocket aand charged him accordingly- with money off if he would muck my place out and put things away.

Tell me I am not a shrewd, hardhearted, no non-sense man who would steal pennies from a poor kid to get rid of junk, and keep a clean shop. Dumb kid is a nice guy though aand bears no ill will towards me for past mistreatment. I guess some folks just liketo be abused!!! He don't even seem to feel I am wrong for treating Gson like a little man instead of a kid.
Steve

Sprocket
03-08-2003, 12:14 AM
As I was picking chips out of the soles of my shoes today, I thought of wheelchair tires and flats. An apron will help with hot chips in the lap, but watch out for the tires too.

dvideo
03-08-2003, 12:25 AM
well.... I have a suggestion... Might be heresy, but it is something I am doing with my son. I got him a Unimat Cool Tool at Christmas. Farily safe muiltimachine outfit that is good for the 6-9 year old crowd. You still need to get safty goggles, and a couple of other things...

We got one of the "motor wood vehicle" kits at HF, took it apart, and some quick dry glue.. I started doing it.. he watched and he finished putting it together... seems like that, some 1/8" plywood, some sandpaper, some patterns, and quick dry glue would be a good combination. If you show him a bit... and where it can lead him with real tools.. and start with some fundamental shop safety- that might be the ticket.

Like I say.... depends on the kid.. but being able to create and do things on your own is real, real important at times.

Jerry Robinson

TONY R
03-17-2003, 01:02 AM
THIS may be a little old but, this may work for its basicly a wheel chair high chair comb. the wheels are driven by a chain drive mech. and allows the idividual the capabilities of being at agreater hieght.I saw this arrangement ata buddies of mine shop. I'll see if I can get a number for you or somespecs. Good luck and there is always away around a handi cap
<font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2">Originally posted by burnlast:
One of the kids (15 year old)down the street is in a wheel chair(paralyzed from the waist down) and has been hanging out in my home shop(with his mothers approval).I enjoy the company & his deburring and assembly help.I can tell he would really like to do more than run a file.I've tried to come up with a way to make the machines more "handicap" accessable for him, but not make it unaccessable for for me.The machines in the shop are an Excello mill and a 12x36 Springfield lathe(very old flat belt drive).Any ideas or are we both dreaming???Thanks ahead of time for any ideas or comments.


Burnlast!!!!! </font>

Kevin45
03-17-2003, 01:14 PM
Burnlast...take one evening when you and him have a few hours together and sit him in a chair and you take over controls of the wheelchair. Go from machine to machine and see what you can't do from a lower level. That will give you the best ideas as to what would need to be done.

Kevin

Alistair Hosie
03-17-2003, 02:34 PM
Burnlast it seems from what his mother is saying that you are providing him with a lot more than just machining.All kids like to have an older adult to look up to sometimes mums and dads are not enough,and I would suggest the banter and cameraderie he gets from you whilest he is with you, besides being made feel special and wothwhile is more than anyone can fully apreiate so I don't think that the machining is what this is all about.You are a role model to him, don't get me wrong he will enjoy the shop but working with adults for the first time is a big stage in a childs life.I had a brother who was mentally handicapped he used to love being focus of attention and to be treated special (who doesn't) so I think you are giving him a lot of hope and confidence that he really needs so good one keep it up it's guys like you who make this world a much better place for all.kindest regards Alistair