It’s always great to try new and exciting products that can better my life. My name is Kuen Tang and I’m a C6/7 quadriplegic. I am tired of using my power chair all the time. I’ve always wished that I would be able to push up ramps or hills all by myself, but sadly after 9 years of trying, I was not successful… that is until I trialed these Magic Wheels.
(I got these from their web site.)
What are MAGICWHEELS®?
MAGICWHEELS Are all mechanical 2-geared wheelchair wheels with no batteries which replace the standard spoke, mag or power assist wheels on your manual wheelchair.
How do MAGICWHEELS work?
MAGICWHEELS – 2-speed wheelchair gears work very similar to a 2 speed bicycle allowing you to shift into a lower gear before you climb hills or roll over any type of uneven or rough terrain.
They have a simple and easy shifter for users with full or limited hand and arm strength. Plus quick release axles for those who regularly remove their wheels. Bolt on axles may also be adapted.
Another feature is the Hill Holder which eliminates the “Surge Affect” usually necessary when climbing hills or long ramps. While in low gear, the Hill Holding feature engages, allowing users to rest between every push without rolling backwards. This eliminates the need to keep your momentum going thus relieving undue strain on your upper body caused by surging.
While going downhill in low gear, the braking feature allows for 50% less required force to stop. This substantially increases the stopping power you have with no extra strength required. The braking feature also allows those using vinyl to stop on hills with less ‘Hand Burn” usually felt with vinyl.
Unlike power assist wheels, MAGICWHEELS have no batteries and no motors. You only use them when you need them and the remainder of the time your wheelchair works very similar to how it does with standard wheels installed.
There are some down side to these wheels:
1) MAGICWHEELS will add around 10 pounds to the total weight of your wheels, depending on which handrim options you choose; 8.12 for the lightest options and 10.5 for the heaviest.
2) There is a learning period you must allow time for… but give it a chance, once you understand the mechanics of the wheels and shifting the gears, then using these wheels becomes easy.
3) Cost is a big barrier to getting these wheels. They average about $6000 a set.
With the negatives mentioned, I had such a positive experience with these wheels; I can honestly say that they have changed my life.
1) The first thing I did after putting these wheels on, I went to try them on my ramp. (which I’ve never been able to wheel up independently) I was able to successfully not only wheel up the ramp all by myself in the first try, I was also able to wheel down the ramp and stop at the bottom as well. I was so excited with my success; I wheeled up and down 4 additional times.
2) I started going out wheeling around my neighborhood by myself and my family members are no longer worried because I was able to get up any curb cut (no matter the depth). Another added bonus was… if my arms were tired, I simply shift gear and push less weight and taking a “break” while wheeling.
3) For the first time in 3 years, I was able to push up the ramp to go into my Van independently and able to stay in my manual wheelchair longer.
Just being able to wheel up and down ramps or hills independently has really changed my outlook. I know that I do not need my power chair all the time if I have these Magic Wheels; strength, curb cuts, hills and ramps are no longer barriers to my independence… I can finally use my own power to get me from point A to point B. I’m confident that these wheels will help me to increase my strength, improve my health and help me to be even more independent in life.
CAUTION: These wheels are not for everyone, please keep an open mind while trial them. MAGICWHEELS have kindly loaned the CPA office in Edmonton a trial set of wheels, if you are interested, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org and make arrangements for trials.