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Overview of finished Rollator

One-handed Rollator brake – one brake, two wheels

The client could only use one hand to brake his four-wheel Rollator. This meant that sometimes, the Rollator would swing wildly and had resulted in occasional falls.

The solution made the Rollator much more stable when the right-hand brake was applied, because BOTH wheels had their brakes applied, instead of one.

The Rollator was a “Drive R8” model.

The Challenge

The client wanted the right-hand brake lever of his Rollator, to operate the brake mechanism on BOTH wheels, rather than just the right-hand wheel.

He only has the strength in one hand, and without the modification the Rollator pivots about the right-hand wheel whenever he applies the brake.

 

The solution

The photographs show the steel frame the author welded up, to support three ‘bowden cable adjusters’ which lead the cables from the handle and the two brake levers. The three cables are joined together with a ‘floating’ steel bar which shares the pulling force between the two rear brakes. Some 3d printed brackets and zip-ties fix the steel frame to the Rollator tube.

The ‘floating’ bar was made by drilling an M4 tap drill right the way through, sending an M4 tap right the way through, then plugging the bottom half of the hole with cut-off M4 screws. This was necessary, because the bar was so small, that a bottoming tap would not have produced a complete thread. Three M4 screws were then used to clamp the cables.

For information, the cables used on the Rollator are 1.5mm diameter, and the outer (plastic-covered) sheaths are 5mm outer diameter. The stroke of the brake handle is quite small, perhaps 10mm or so.

Cutting the Bowden cables was done with a Dremel cut-off disc, and worked really well for both the outer and the inner cables, without leaving any crush-damage. Once cut cleanly, the inner cable will unravel, unless care is taken – but the cut with the Dremel is very clean and passes through the 1.6mm holes in the ‘floating’ bar easily.

The client never used the ‘locking system’ for the Rollator (when you push the brake handle DOWNWARDS, both brakes shoud lock on) and was not bothered about it. This was good for the author because they did not have to tweak the final solution to make this work – which might be difficult (see concern below).

The client never folded the Rollator, so again, the author was not concerned about this.

The final solution works very well. The author is slightly concerned that operating both brakes introduces some slack in the system, so the brake handle travel is slightly more than before. But currently there is reserve distance, if the cables stretch, some tweaking of the adjusters will be needed.

The benefit

The client felt that, for the first time, the Rollator was stable when he applied the brake lever.

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One response to “One-handed Rollator brake – one brake, two wheels”

  1. I am also looking for a solution, but was there a problem using a standard twin bowden cable unit.
    I must say that I’m new to Remap and I’m just getting to grips with ‘shareable solutions’

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