Everyone knows that there is a host of second hand sales websites, so we took a look through some to see what we could find. Then we were quite literally inundated with an email, with a subject of “Rigid lightweight wheelchair under £1000 challenge”. It read:
Dear Review My next Wheelchair
I need a wheelchair but my budget is smaller than a baby hamster. What can I get for £1000?
*Bob’s name was changed and he certainly didn’t write “love”.
We’ve had a few questions on and off about the options for second hand rigid frame wheelchairs, which after some discussion led to what we’ve called the “Rigid lightweight under £1000 challenge” (a lot of work went into that title). So, lets look at the rules, which imaginatively got titled….
The “Rigid lightweight under £1000 challenge” rules
We had some clear criteria. Nothing was to be for parts, sizes to be realistic, under 10 years old and condition had to be acceptable. We looked for:
- Sizes between 15 and 20 inch
- Popular brands
- Strict price limit had to include shipping in the total
We looked on Ebay because that’s one of the most well known auction websites – that said, we know you can also look on Gumtree or others.
We found a second hand TiLite ZRA for £500. Measuring 15 inches wide, it’s on the smaller end of our search. In a neutral grey colour, it was new in 2013 and comes with Spinergy wheels. They’re not the lightest wheels but they are really strong, so you know that if you give your manual wheels a bit of hard work, then the wheels should handle the challenge.
It’s a good looking wheelchair and a positive start to our hunt…
Quickie Life R
It’s high on the price end, but with an 18 inch seat, a rigid frame and frog leg casters, this has a reasonable specification for the price. Although the Life R isn’t the lightest rigid frame wheelchair out there, sometimes a budget will dictate what you’re looking to buy.
It’s been reduced from £900 to £600 and has purple wheel covers on it. It’s not a bad wheelchair for the money, but if you need reasonable back support, we’d look for something with tension adjustable back rests. Let me point out that Frog Leg casters are worth about £100 though and suddenly you’re paying £500 for a reasonable basic wheelchair.
Kuschall K Series
One of the best rated wheelchairs on here, the K-Series can be had for (wait for it…) £400. Yes, you read that right – £400.
It has a 17 x 17 inch seat and purple accents against the blue paint work. The purple paintwork actually got some discussion going around here – mostly because it’s purple (you can disagree in the comments). It’s got a short and adjustable backrest, anti-tip guards and removable handles, so is a decent specification for the offer. The size will
Concluding our “Rigid lightweight wheelchair under £1000 challenge”
We know they’re out there – we found three in an hour. The larger sizes are hard to come by though and given that back support is vital, we think you should always look for a wheelchair with tension adjustable fabric or a Jay backrest to ensure that you can get the best support for your back.
Avoid something that has been made to measure unless you really like the gamble. A wheelchair that can be slightly adjusted means that you can get the centre of gravity set up correctly. Which leads us neatly to one last point: when you’ve bought it, get it re-configured by someone who knows wheelchairs so that it fits your measurements.
Let us know if you have purchased second hand in the comments below please! All you have to do is log in using your Facebook or Twitter, or register with us. If you liked our Rigid lightweight wheelchair under £1000 challenge and you want us to try something similar for electric wheelchairs, tell us below too!