Cycling and bicycle discussion forums. 
   Click here to join our community Log in to access your Control Panel  


Go Back   > >

Adaptive Cycling: Handcycles, Amputee Adaptation, Visual Impairment, and Other Needs Have a need for adaptive equipment to ride to compensate for a disability or loss of limb or function? This area is for discussion among those of us in the cycling world that are coming back from traumatic circumstances and tell the world, "No, you are not going to beat me down!"

Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Old 01-01-08, 01:31 PM   #1
soulknight
Junior Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Feb 2007
Bikes:
Posts: 15
Biking without arms

I am an avid bicyclist but not familiar with recumbents. I recently married a woman who lost her arms above the elbows in a bus accident. In addition to losing her arms the accident robbed her of her joy of biking. I still go out riding every now and then but not as much as I would like to because she can not go with me. She says she does not mind but I know this is an activity she would really like to do with me. I would appreciate your help in finding a biking solution for her. In general she is a happy woman but to be able bike again would light a new fire in her eyes. She wears prosthetics and I have been trying to think of a way to get the cable that control her hands to be able to operate the shifters. I do not think braking would be a problem as we could use the pedal brakes that are seen on many children's bikes. The biggest problem I think is steering. Without elbows she does not have the control for standard handle bars and it is not safe. Any advise you can offer would be greatly appreciated.
soulknight is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-01-08, 01:34 PM   #2
roseyscot
east coast tourer
 
Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: Boston, MA
Bikes: too many to list
Posts: 60
what about starting with a tandem? no braking or shifting required from her if she is the stoker. i have met people who suffer from visual handicaps or stability handicaps and they get a big thrill out of tandem riding. some even compete in tandem races, tandem time trials, and even tandem touring.
roseyscot is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-01-08, 01:36 PM   #3
operator
cab horn
 
Join Date: Jun 2004
Location: Toronto
Bikes: 1987 Bianchi Campione
Posts: 28,306
If by pedal brakes you mean, coaster brake. Then no- it'll take you forever to stop. And recumbents you'll probably looking at a trike. I have no idea how you would get around the gear shifting/braking problem though.

Cheapest trikes with disc brakes start out at around $1000. Fairly cheap in the 'bent world. Perhaps you might get a better response in that forum as well.
operator is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-01-08, 01:38 PM   #4
barba
Senior Member
 
barba's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2005
Bikes:
Posts: 4,083
If she can support herself on an upright bike, I agree a tandem may be a fun option.
barba is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-01-08, 01:46 PM   #5
soulknight
Junior Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Feb 2007
Bikes:
Posts: 15
I have considered a tandem. I am also looking at recumbents as a possible solution.
soulknight is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-01-08, 01:49 PM   #6
StephenH
Uber Goober
 
StephenH's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2007
Location: Dallas area, Texas
Bikes:
Posts: 11,209
There are recumbent tandems as well, which might take the weight off her arms. There are combined tandems, where one person is in a recumbent seat and one in a normal bike position, but I'm not sure who does the controls on those (I think the normal bike seat is the captain's seat, though in the rear).

Some of the older tandems are made for more upright riding, but they're generally the single-speed around-the-neighborhood type bikes.

There are bicycles that are auto-shifting. They're not too popular, but an option to consider.

On the coaster brake, it depends a lot on the riding you're doing. I'm riding a cruiser-style bike with coaster brake. Works great. But I generally top out at about 17 mph when pedaling, and don't have any long downhills on the routes I'm doing, and I'm not dodging big-city traffic. If you're going faster, in busy traffic, or have long downhills, it could be a problem. A lighter person should have less problem than a heavier person when using coaster brakes.

It occurs to me also that with normal bicycling, you mostly don't use your hands for much of anything but steering or leaning on. But, every once in a while, you'll need to apply some force to the handlebars, and it could be very awkward if you couldn't. Comes up when accelerating hard, for example, or when hopping a bike back onto the asphalt.
StephenH is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-01-08, 02:04 PM   #7
soulknight
Junior Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Feb 2007
Bikes:
Posts: 15
Quote:
Originally Posted by StephenH View Post
There are recumbent tandems as well, which might take the weight off her arms. There are combined tandems, where one person is in a recumbent seat and one in a normal bike position, but I'm not sure who does the controls on those (I think the normal bike seat is the captain's seat, though in the rear).

Some of the older tandems are made for more upright riding, but they're generally the single-speed around-the-neighborhood type bikes.

There are bicycles that are auto-shifting. They're not too popular, but an option to consider.

On the coaster brake, it depends a lot on the riding you're doing. I'm riding a cruiser-style bike with coaster brake. Works great. But I generally top out at about 17 mph when pedaling, and don't have any long downhills on the routes I'm doing, and I'm not dodging big-city traffic. If you're going faster, in busy traffic, or have long downhills, it could be a problem. A lighter person should have less problem than a heavier person when using coaster brakes.

It occurs to me also that with normal bicycling, you mostly don't use your hands for much of anything but steering or leaning on. But, every once in a while, you'll need to apply some force to the handlebars, and it could be very awkward if you couldn't. Comes up when accelerating hard, for example, or when hopping a bike back onto the asphalt.
She is a very talented woman but racing and dodging busy city traffic going to be in her scope of riding. I would be happy to get her out on isolated country roads. I understand that autoshifters are not popular but considering her problem anything would be great.
soulknight is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-01-08, 03:04 PM   #8
StephenH
Uber Goober
 
StephenH's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2007
Location: Dallas area, Texas
Bikes:
Posts: 11,209
One autoshift bike is here- don't know if there are other manufacturers:

http://lrbikes.com/

And one stoker-in-front semi-recumbent is here:

http://www.bilenky.com/viewpnt.html

Somebody had mentioned this manufacturer in the Utility forum.

I've not dealt with either company, just relaying information.
StephenH is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-01-08, 03:29 PM   #9
ken cummings
Senior Member
 
ken cummings's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2005
Location: northern California
Bikes: Bruce Gordon BLT, Cannondale parts bike, Ecodyne recumbent trike, Counterpoint Opus 2, miyata 1000
Posts: 5,601
Have a look at that Bilenky Viewpoint My wife and I have its predecessor, the Counterpoint. The stoker in front controls only a cadence modulator/adjustor. When my wife got used to my shifting style she stopped needing to use her hand and usually rides with her arms crossed in front. I have all the other controls in the rear. I have even had a RAAM winner in front who had a cast on one leg. She did not even need to pedal as there is a freewheel between the stoker and the captain further back. Ours cost us $2,400 back in 1986. I wonder at the cost of the modern viewpoint. It would definately solve the problem tho.
ken cummings is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-01-08, 05:23 PM   #10
soulknight
Junior Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Feb 2007
Bikes:
Posts: 15
I like the Hase Bike and Bilenky semi tandems and will definitely look into them. I would still like to get her to be able ride her own bike. I everyones help has been great today and I have seen a lot of possibilities. I think with a little mechanical engineering it may be possible for Sylvia to ride again. For now those are a great starting point for us to be able to ride together. I think she will be happy just to feel the wind in her face again. Hopefully some of you will see us this summer.
soulknight is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-01-08, 07:22 PM   #11
biker128pedal
Senior Member
 
biker128pedal's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2007
Location: Eastern VA
Bikes: Madone 5.0, Old Trek 412, Shogun 1500, Diamondback Topanga frame (Warranty replacement of broken Raleigh)
Posts: 727
Did you see this site? I thick the guy Victor is a double above the elbows.

http://www.mtb-amputee.com/

http://www.mtb-amputee.com/ArmAmpute...ow%20amputees.
biker128pedal is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-01-08, 07:41 PM   #12
soulknight
Junior Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Feb 2007
Bikes:
Posts: 15
I have looked at that site. Victor is actually a single arm amputee trying to show techniques of how a double amputee might ride. His story is pretty incredible none the less.
soulknight is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-02-08, 02:14 AM   #13
moleman76
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2006
Location: western Washington
Bikes: Stella
Posts: 604
I'd suggest you post a topic on the lines of "seeking tandem suggestions for us .. " and describe the basics, on the Tandem sub-forum here. I think you'll get some good answers.
moleman76 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-06-10, 11:13 AM   #14
soulknight
Junior Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Feb 2007
Bikes:
Posts: 15
It's been a while since I posted anything. I am still looking for a biking solutions for Sylvia but I have narrowed it down to either a Hase Pino or a tad pole trike.

A couple years ago I read about a shifter that is part of the bottom bracket and is shifted by tapping the heel. I thought it was called a 'Scrumph' shifter but my google searches have not turned anything up on this. Is anyone familiar with this system?
soulknight is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-06-10, 11:28 AM   #15
DiabloScott
It's MY mountain
 
DiabloScott's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2006
Location: Mt.Diablo
Bikes:
Posts: 6,591
Quote:
Originally Posted by soulknight View Post
It's been a while since I posted anything. I am still looking for a biking solutions for Sylvia but I have narrowed it down to either a Hase Pino or a tad pole trike.

A couple years ago I read about a shifter that is part of the bottom bracket and is shifted by tapping the heel. I thought it was called a 'Scrumph' shifter but my google searches have not turned anything up on this. Is anyone familiar with this system?



I met this guy a couple years ago who rides with his father who had some balance problems. Looks a lot more stable than the ones you listed. For recumbent trikes they look pretty cool http://www.greenspeed.com.au/trikes.html


Don't know about those shifters you mentioned, but there are some bar-end type shifters that return to center - so you don't have to actually be able to have much fine motor skill to adjust them - you just bump one direction or the other.
DiabloScott is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-06-10, 11:38 AM   #16
BCRider
Senior Member
 
BCRider's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2008
Location: The 'Wack, BC, Canada
Bikes: Norco (2), Miyata, Canondale, Soma, Redline
Posts: 5,456
Soulknight, there is at least one motorcycle racer out there that has one arm missing and worked out an attachement and perhaps special prosthetic to allow him to keep on racing. And this was desert racing with jumps and bumps so you KNOW that it had to be positive enough to not just lift out and lose the connection. So in terms of the handlebar issue and shifting don't be afraid to look at pure new design custom options. For example you remembered a foot shifter concept. Even if you can't find it it's not the end of the world. If you and your missus think it'll do the job then get creative in the shop and make something up. If you're not clear on some of the howtodoit's I'm sure you'd get a lot of design help from the group here. Getting her back out riding is a noble cause and a lot of us would be up for the design challenge once we know a bit more about this.
BCRider is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-06-10, 12:00 PM   #17
fietsbob 
coprolite
 
fietsbob's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2010
Location: NW,Oregon Coast
Bikes: 7
Posts: 18,086
Tadpole trikes like #15, are steered by pushing/pulling on hand levers,
so if a solo ride .. that may be a possibility depending on the functionality of the prosthetics, in use.
the engineering put into the latest prosthetics is, itself, amazing.

There are also specialist build recumbent delta trikes, drive is by the single front wheel. which also gets steered by your feet.

braking can be by back pedaling, using a special freewheel pawl or roller clutch systems
engaged off the left side of the crankarms.
so brakes can be more powerful than the traditional coaster brakes.

As said initially, for a conventional tandem if she can support herself with the prostheses, against the stoker handlebar,
one of those would be certainly the lowest cost way to get out and about..

Last edited by fietsbob; 08-06-10 at 12:18 PM.
fietsbob is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-06-10, 12:14 PM   #18
scruggle
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2009
Bikes:
Posts: 188
Quote:
Originally Posted by soulknight View Post
A couple years ago I read about a shifter that is part of the bottom bracket and is shifted by tapping the heel. I thought it was called a 'Scrumph' shifter but my google searches have not turned anything up on this. Is anyone familiar with this system?
It's a Schlumpf. http://www.schlumpf.ch/ Apparently Greenspeed offers it as an option, but you can get it stand-alone as well. Here is one online retailer: http://bentupcycles.com/product/schl...-drive-798.htm
scruggle is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-06-10, 01:44 PM   #19
Grand Bois
Senior Member
 
Grand Bois's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: Pinole, CA, USA
Bikes:
Posts: 16,482
Sturmey Archer just released a 2 speed kickback hub with coaster brake.
Grand Bois is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-06-10, 01:57 PM   #20
Booger1
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2007
Location: Gaseous Cloud around Uranus
Bikes:
Posts: 3,676
Schwinn used to make 2 and 3 speed kickback style hubs w/coaster brakes for 2 wheel bikes and trikes.They came in different ratios also.I forget the paint codes,but the hubs had different color stripes around the hubs denoting what they were.
Booger1 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-06-10, 03:41 PM   #21
tatfiend 
Gear Hub fan
 
Join Date: Nov 2008
Location: Reno, NV
Bikes: Civia Hyland Rohloff, Swobo Dixon, Colnago, Univega
Posts: 2,830
Here in Reno there is a one arm amputee Vietnam veteran who uses a bike as his sole transportation. All controls are on one side of the handlebar. In fact the other half of the handlebar has been cut off as he does not wear a prosthesis.

No help to you as you are dealing with a double amputee but it does show what is possible with determination.

One possibility I can think of is a bike or trike with the new Dura Ace electronic shifting. Shifting can be done via switches that can be hit by prosthetics I would think. I am not sure about how to manage brake controls however.
__________________
Gear Hubs Owned: Rohloff disc brake, SRAM iM9 disc brake, SRAM P5 freewheel, Sachs Torpedo 3 speed freewheel, NuVinci CVT, Shimano Alfine SG S-501, Sturmey Archer S5-2 Alloy. Other: 83 Colnago Super Record, Univega Via De Oro

Visit and join the Yahoo Geared Hub Bikes group for support and links.
http://groups.yahoo.com/group/Geared_hub_bikes/
tatfiend is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-06-10, 04:16 PM   #22
freebooter
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2009
Location: Devon, UK
Bikes:
Posts: 137
Quote:
Originally Posted by tatfiend View Post
No help to you as you are dealing with a double amputee but it does show what is possible with determination.
In 1936 Walter Greaves set the record for distance cycled in a calender year at 45,383 miles (approx 124 miles per day) despite having had one arm amputated below the elbow.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Walter_Greaves_(cyclist)

However, I agree that this isn't directly relevant to the op but is inspirational.
freebooter is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-06-10, 04:55 PM   #23
JiveTurkey
Low car diet
 
JiveTurkey's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2007
Location: Corvallis, OR, USA
Bikes: 2006 Windsor Dover w/105, 2007 GT Avalanche w/XT, 1995 Trek 820 setup for touring, 201? Yeah single-speed folder, 199? Huffy tandem.
Posts: 2,407
^ Edit your link to include the end-parentheses.
JiveTurkey is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-06-10, 06:35 PM   #24
Jeff Wills
Insane Bicycle Mechanic
 
Jeff Wills's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2008
Location: other Vancouver
Bikes:
Posts: 7,892
Quote:
Originally Posted by Booger1 View Post
Schwinn used to make 2 and 3 speed kickback style hubs w/coaster brakes for 2 wheel bikes and trikes.They came in different ratios also.I forget the paint codes,but the hubs had different color stripes around the hubs denoting what they were.
These hubs were made by Bendix : http://www.bunchobikes.com/auto.htm and http://www.trfindley.com/pgbndxhbs.html . Blue band means the hub has a direct gear and a higher "overdrive" gear. The yellow band means it has a low gear and a direct gear. As far as I know, there's no 3-speed kickback hub.

A friend of mine has a hand-and-foot powered bicycle recumbent, similar in design to a Flevobike: http://flevofanclub.ligfiets.net/ . I've heard that skilled riders can ride these without using their hands. Jane's has a Rohloff 14-speed hub and a clutch attached to the crank to activate the brake when backpedaling: it's 14-speed with coaster brake!

Here you go:
http://www.ohpv.org/events/albums/jf...s/IMAG0238.htm
http://good-times.webshots.com/video...00039462xYxYMI
__________________
Jeff Wills

Comcast nuked my web page. It will return soon..
Jeff Wills is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-17-11, 07:02 PM   #25
bikepro 
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2003
Location: Allen, TX
Bikes: Look 585
Posts: 1,837
Quote:
Originally Posted by operator View Post
If by pedal brakes you mean, coaster brake. Then no- it'll take you forever to stop. And recumbents you'll probably looking at a trike. I have no idea how you would get around the gear shifting/braking problem though.

Cheapest trikes with disc brakes start out at around $1000. Fairly cheap in the 'bent world. Perhaps you might get a better response in that forum as well.
A modified trike. Perhaps something like a coaster brake for braking and internally geared hub for simplified shifting. It would have a modified shift lever to be operated by the knee or whatever. These are just some "out of the box" ideas for an individual bike.
bikepro is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply


Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off



All times are GMT -6. The time now is 10:30 PM.