Oliver’s spina bifida left him unable to use a foot pedal in a standard ride in car. Oliver’s mother asked if a car could be adapted with a hand throttle as he is unable to operate the throttle pedal on the floor. Given that this is a ‘standard’ adaption for full size mobility vehicles it seemed totally practical. It was agreed that she would source a vehicle and I would assemble it and make and fit a suitable hand throttle. The only other constraint was that ideally this would be done in time for Christmas – and it was already November and we are in the middle of a pandemic!
The car was bought and picked up. On examination the throttle control was a simple on-off push switch mounted to a foot pedal. Hence a simple switched fitted on the ‘steering column’ wired in place of the existing switch was all that was required. A ‘paddle’ design was chosen fitted under the steering wheel at the 4 – 6 o’clock position. A standard microswitch housed in a 3D printed body was fixed to the plastic cover over the steering column.
The movement of the steering wheel was minimal so it wasn’t considered necessary to add a ball spinner to the steering wheel (something you see on full size mobility adaptions as the wheel movement is much greater). The following link is a video on YouTube showing the operation of the switch in situ. https://youtu.be/AG_5bPRkbKI
The following link is a video on YouTube showing Oliver and family on Christmas Day. Posted with permission of Oliver’s mother.
NOTE: The video shows the car being used outside in a shared public space. Current UK legislation does not permit such use. Remap does not endorse its use in public areas but recognise that ultimately it is the parent’s responsibility.
Oliver is now able to independently drive the car and play out with his friends and family.