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Old 09-27-2012, 11:49 AM   #1
Glittercat
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Smile TiLite and/or Spinlife any tips?

We're finally about to order my new wheelchair and I'm getting the TiLite Aero X. Tilite because it is strong, fast, light, comes in a rainbow of colors, and sounds easier to put together and take apart for travel.
Spinlife gets pretty good reviews from the better Business bureau and a "B" rating.

Do you have a TiLite chair? If so what do you like or dislike about it? How long have you had it? Would you still choose same chair? Did you have trouble measuring?

I'm knocking my head against this part and so is Pete my husband. I've been watching youtoube videos trying to understand the number of measurements required, but feel sort of boggled.

Have you ordered from Spinlife? Were they reliable?
Buying a sporty wheelchair is a complex business and I really can't afford to screw up. Thank you in advance for any answers! *hugs* ~Rebecca
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Old 09-27-2012, 12:21 PM   #2
rewardsinlife
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Tricky business is right! My gosh, I think it is easier buying a car!

Ok, well since I just bought a lighter sportier wheelchair last week, I will give my advice.

1. Look around on other sites from Spinlife...I say this because there are much better discounts out there on the 'smaller' sites. This being said, Spinlife is one of the best sites to look for what you want before you search around for the best price.

2. The measuring can be ridiculous..even with the proper measurement guide. My advice, either chat with someone online from the site to help set up your chair or give a call. I called because I Wasn't sure on some things, and they actually gave me another feature free b/c of the order over the phone. I ordered from 1-800 wheelchair which is then transferred to sunrise medical. (only problem so far is that I still don't have the chair...though our mail here is pretty slow and a custom chair takes longer to make I suppose... And no tracking # to see when it is coming. )

3. Look at reviews. Was almost certain on tilite aero x as well but right before I started to get out my credit card and called in I looked at reviews..or lack of them. It is up to you..and tilite is a lot lighter than quickie..but I went for sturdier than less weight b/c I didn't want to keep replacing things. Most common complaint of tilite is that the parts on the wheelchair were cheap and also tilite has a problem with the middle cross support bar breaking in half. I am getting a quickie lxi rehab chair btw.

4. Write out exactly what you want and need....ESP. If you order on phone. They are salesman after all and will try to upgrade you if they can. Most upgrades can be very expensive.

5. Check out PCH wheelchair online. Offers the best deals from all different sites. If I had stuck with Spinlife I would be owing $400 dollars more right now!

Hope this helps and let me know if you have anymore questions!
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Old 09-27-2012, 02:14 PM   #3
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Oh thank you so much RewardsinLife! I'm looking into the chair you mentioned, and both websites. Trying to figure all of this out with a 3 week + migraine is really complicated. So very much looking forward to getting around in life and at WDW faster and safer though! My chair is 6 and a half years old and was never made for the kind of use it has had to endure lol. My new one needs to be pretty light as my joints all dislocate, and sometimes the weight of the one I own is enough to dislocate my shoulder- awkward and uber painful!
Spinlife did have the natural fit rims (in regular) for $221.25 and 1800wheelchair had them for $375 but i'm still checking the other options, and and quickie comes in pretty colors too! What color is yours? Thank you so very much for taking the time to chat on this, I really appreciate it!
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Old 09-27-2012, 02:26 PM   #4
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I have a TiLite TR of the old type (from about 2004). I love it. I wouldn't be able to self-propel anything heavier (and mostly can't self-propel the TiLite anymore, but that's because I've ruined my shoulders in other ways). I prefer rigid chairs with a folding back (fewer vibrations and actually easier for me to transport than the traditional folding chair I tried was) so I won't be trying the Aero X, but when I eventually have to replace my chair I'll probably go with another TiLite. (Right now the ZRA is probably high on my list, but it'll hopefully be another few years before I have to think about it as my chair really has only needed normal fixes such as new tires and casters so far.) I was measured by a DME so I can't really help on the measurement side of things.

I would seriously suggest going through a local DME rather than Spinlife it at all possible. It might be more expensive, but then you know you have a place that can do repairs. If you're using insurance coverage at all they'll be good at dealing with the insurance, as well. They'll also know how to measure.

If you have access to one at all, too, I'd suggest see about getting an evaluation from a seating clinic to see about what the best cushion would be. Wheelchair cushions are expensive, but having tried a range, it's worth the money to get the one that works best for you.

It does take longer for TiLite or any custom made wheelchair to ship than it does for a general manual wheelchair. I think it took about 6-8 weeks for mine to ship after the order went in. They really do make every wheelchair specifically to order which is why it takes so long.

I've used Spinlife, but not for a wheelchair, just accessories. I've found them to generally be slower than they claim to be. For example, I once had a cushion die on me and I needed a new one ASAP so ordered one with I think overnight shipping. The site said it should take about 48 hours to ship so I figured 3 days total. It took me over a week to get the cushion and the reasons that Spinlife were giving me for the delay were illogical (they claimed the company that they got their stock of that cushion from was waiting for stock to get in; I contact someone I knew at that company and there was no such problem). The other things I've ordered haven't taken as long or been as frustrating, but I wouldn't use them for anything urgent. The quality of items I've gotten have all been good. I do know people who've used them successfully for wheelchairs.
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Old 09-27-2012, 02:55 PM   #5
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Ah yes, if you dislocate that easily the lighter the chair the better for you

Maybe a different type of tilite. I just worried when I couldn't find ANY reviews on the aero x type anywhere. I would like to kind of know what works!

The color I am getting is blue opal. The sparkling paint just reminded me of DL, so I thought it was the most 'magical' to use when I am there and when I am looking forward to my next trip!
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Old 09-27-2012, 04:37 PM   #6
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Very recent update..you got me thinking where my wc was and I am totally getting BS answers and a run around from 1-800 wheelchair and sunrise. Don't even know if it has been ordered yet?

Don't Order from either. I may just cancel and do the whole thing over if I don't get some convincing answers soon. Grr.
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Old 09-28-2012, 12:23 PM   #7
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I have to admit that I don't know anyone who has bought an Aero. I know people have since they haven't dropped the chair since it was introduced, but I suspect the people who've bought it have bought through offline DME companies and so haven't been writing online reviews. Certainly I've seen people trying them at Abilities Expos. I don't think I have (I forget because I've tried so many different chairs at various expos), but I can at least vouch for the brand. Personally, I'll always spend the extra for titanium (IIRC the Aero is only aluminium) because of the lighter weight and increased strength of the metal, but I'm totally spoiled because I've never used an aluminium chair. (It's another reason I tend to go for rigid chairs, but I totally understand why for some people they don't work.) Of titanium chairs, I'd say that the Quickie and Invacare are probably about as good as the TiLite. I just happen to like the TiLite more (back when I got my chair TiLite only used titanium, which was somewhat a bonus since it meant they were most familiar with it).

Sunrise Medical is the company that makes Quickie wheelchairs so there's a problem if you're getting the runaround from them. You might want to look around to see if any of their folks hang out on any websites (for example, the Wheelchair Junkie website is done by a guy who works for Pride and based on responses people there have had it seems like reps from Permobil and Invacare also read the boards from time to time).

www.quickie-wheelchairs.com seems to be buying through Southwest Medical, which is a company I've had luck with for replacement parts (they worked with me when it turned out that the casters I needed to replace were no longer made so that we got the correct ones out and everything was handled as quickly as they could). At least for what I've ordered, I order through them, but the product is shipped directly from the manufacturer (so in my case, I've gotten things direct from TiLite). I've heard less positive things from other people, but Southwest really got me out of a fix in April so I'm a fan.

Sorry for the length. Mobility equipment and making sure people are able to find the best for themselves as possible are things that get me going ;-)
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Old 09-29-2012, 07:46 AM   #8
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Try looking at Sportaid www.sportaid.com it's a great company owned by a quad and they will help you with all the measurements. I've been buying stuff from them for years (light up front wheels, replacement cushions, Top End bike, tires and other stuff)
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Old 10-01-2012, 11:47 AM   #9
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Just want to give a quick thank you, and then will come back and respond to everyone properly later! Bad pain week with migraines, both shoulders dislocated (once because of weight of push) and hyper extended knee- lol feel like a badly put together doll. Have to finish a painting for a charity to benefit a women & children's shelter before I can spend time in DIS boards. Sportaid gets great reviews too. Currently on the phone with someone at spinlife about measurements, which is confusing as can be. Thank you for responses be back this evening! Happy October 1st everyone!
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Old 10-01-2012, 01:22 PM   #10
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It's ordered! I spoke to a wonderful man named Dion at spin life (his daughter is wheelchair bound) and he helped me through every single step! The seat may be a tad wide but I need to be able to wear a coat as it gets ridiculously rainy and icy here. My husband measured all the fiddly bits! 10 days-ish they said and I'm over the moon with delight!
Base Price - $1,150.00
(Frame Finish) Ocean Blue, Metallic Paint
(Frame Type) TiLite Aero X Fixed Front
(Front Angle) 80° Front Angle w/ No Taper
(Front Seat Height) 21"
(Rear Seat Height) 19"
(Seat Width) 17"
(Seat Depth) Fixed - Medium - 16"
(Seat Upholstery) Tension Adjustable
(Upholstery Color) Black
(Back Height) Folding- 13"-15"
(Back Type) Folding, Adj. Angle Height w/Integrated Push Handles - $150.00
(Back Upholstery) Padded Nylon
(Footrest) Fixed- 19"
(Footrest Options) Fixed, Flip-up Footrest
(Heel Loops) Heel Loops - $30.00
(Rear Wheels) TiLite SHADOW
(Front Wheel) 6”x1” Plastic Wheel w/Poly Tire
(Rear Wheel Size) 24” (540)
(Rear Wheel Tire) Schwalbe Marathon Plus Evolution- 24" - $93.75
(Axles) Stainless Quick Release
(Camber Angle - Primary) 2°
(Handrim) Natural Fit™ Regular Grip - $221.25
(Handrim Tab) Long Tabs
(Wheel Locks) Composite Push to Lock
(Side Guards) Aluminum - Rigid Removable - STD - $131.25Comfort Company Twin Gel and Foam cushion
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Old 10-01-2012, 03:23 PM   #11
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Congratulations on your new WC!!!!!

Mine finally came too! Just what I wanted...couldn't be better, so definately worth the wait.
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Old 10-01-2012, 05:36 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rewardsinlife View Post
Congratulations on your new WC!!!!!

Mine finally came too! Just what I wanted...couldn't be better, so definately worth the wait.
Oh! I'm so happy for you!!! Can you post a picture? I made a composite of mine with images to tide me over until it arrives (actually"she" lol I'm naming her Bebe le Bleu and painting the the back of the seat ) , but have not figured out to post pictures here yet. I would love to see your chair! Is the color what you thought it would be? How does it feel? Thrilled to bits for you enjoy your new ride!!! *hug*
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Old 10-01-2012, 06:02 PM   #13
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Yes! I will definitely post a picture as soon ask figure out how to do it too!

The color..well it is Amazing! The color on the website does it no justice. It is basically blue background with a rainbow sparkles all over it! So beautiful! Loks like this, but more blue then yellow

Feels good so far. Haven't hadn't long enough to know yet all the ins and outs, but feeling it out. Working on wheelies now! I do think though that I am going to need a thicker seat cushion as I have sciatic nerve problems.

Will post pic when I figure it out!
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Old 10-01-2012, 07:47 PM   #14
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I have the TiLite ZRA series 2 rigid chair and I love it!! Mine was fitted by a DME who also was in a TiLite chair and has been for 20+ years. He told me that he has done everything that he could to break the components of the chair and has not been able to. His assistant confirmed that.

I like that my chair is light weight and is quite small when the rear wheels are removed and it fits in the back seat of our Ford Fusion fine. It won't fit in the trunk though because it is too tall for the trunk, but in the back seat just fine.

I also went to the TiLite site itself and downloaded their order form that explains where and what needs measuring better than other sites. You can order directly from TiLite too!

I wish you both good luck with your new chair!! Mine is the ocean blue too and it is really pretty! It's also a very comfortable chair and easy to propel.
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Old 10-01-2012, 07:49 PM   #15
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We are doing the AKL tri-fecta
You will find us wrapped up in them at night and on the weekends
 
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Oh I also had the transport hooks put on the chair. This way if I need to use it in Disney or on my scooter lift, I can.

Last edited by peemagg; 10-02-2012 at 01:52 PM.
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