All rollators come with skinny tyres and cannot be used on grass bowling lawns which specify wide wheels >90mm. However these are uncommon and can be expensive. The exception being dinghy launching trolley wheels -made from plastic, costing ~£8 each . The downside -they are quite heavy and require a 1″ diameter axle. Rollators are fitted with 8mm axle rods are not robust enough to take the heavy wide wheels and extensive modifications are necessary to adapt these wheels to fit..
- The rear wheels were removed and the ends of the rear arms plugged with a hard wood dowel (machined on wood turning lathe) to a depth of ~2″ , then the existing 8mm axle aperture re- drilled to 10mm .
- Four pairs of sleeves were turned in hard wood – o/d: 1″ & i/d: 10mm and fitted to the four wheels.
- 10mm studding was used for the rear wheel axles & wheels secured with lock nuts so they rotated freely.
- The brake assemblies were relocated further up the rear arms so the brakes were operative again.
- The original front wheel forks were removed and new ones fabricated from 30mm wide x 4mm thick mild steel . The ends of the arms were drilled to take 10mm studding axles and a 12mm hole drilled in the centre of the fork . The forks were connected up to the original seating using long 12mm bolts with lock nuts , which allowed the front wheels to swivel. Note: the forks were angled as this facilitated rotation of the wide wheels.
The resulting rollator was acceptable to the clients grass bowling club and was much admired ! She quickly became a proficient player and started to attend away matches when she decided to upgrade to a lighter chassis, so she could load it into her car without assistance. The modifications were simply switched over to the new lighter chassis and her old one recycled for further use. As can be seen from the photo , Bertha’s owner is a thoroughly happy soul and is delighted with the new opportunities provided by the modified rollator and her life can now be described as being on a roll! .