Whirlwind RoughRider

Exhibition: Network | October 7, 2011 by

Millions of people worldwide require a wheelchair to perform daily activities but lack access to one. At San Francisco State University, professor and engineer Ralf Hotchkiss and his students are developing innovative and replicable wheelchair designs. The 2010 model of the Whirlwind RoughRider allows users to travel across varying rural and urban and terrain—broken pavement, high curbs, rocky trails, etc. The chair is made from low-cost, readily available parts such as mild steel, bicycle bearings, and tires for easy maintenance regardless of location. Whirlwind Wheelchair International has built a network of certified factories and assembly shops around the world, and currently wheelchairs are being produced in independently owned sites in Mexico, Vietnam, Turkey, Georgia, Indonesia, and South Africa.

Whirlwind Wheelchair International. Developed San Francisco, CA; for replication worldwide, 1979–present



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