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Thread: wheelchair accessable crib

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
    Location
    Cedar Park, TX
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    320

    wheelchair accessable crib

    I'm in the process of making a wheelchair accessable crib for a wheelchair confined couple in our church who recently adopted a newborn baby. The mattress base had to be raised quite high so the mom can get in close enough in her wheelchair to comfortably lift the baby out. I'm putting pairs of sliding panels on each side for access. My big concern with it is the high center of gravity, so I may end up adding outriggers to the bottoms of the legs to give it a wider stance.

    Lets see if I can't add a still pic of the SketchUp plan.



    To give an idea of how tall it is, the top of the head/foot rails is about 6'.
    Jerry

    http://www.sawdustersplace.com

    "If politics wasn't built on careful deception it wouldn't need its own word and techniques. It would just be called honesty, education, and leadership."
    Bob "Phydeaux" Stewart one day on Woodnet

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Location
    London, Ontario
    Posts
    3,383
    Jerry, I would expect outriggers to interfere with the wheelchair wheels. Is it possible to fasten it to the wall?

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Location
    Floydada, Tx
    Posts
    1,941
    They make anti tip bracket for frige and other things. Maybe one of these would work for that.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Location
    Mountain Home, Arkansas
    Posts
    11,828
    My thought using outriggers was interference with the wheelchair also. As the baby gets larger and more active tipping could be a real concern. I believe fastening to the wall will be you best choice. Those folks are taking on a real challenge. I am also wondering how they will handle the child for things like diaper changing and dressing. Are you making another table they will use for those things?
    "Folks is funny critters."

    Think for yourselves and let others enjoy the privilege to do so, too. ~Voltaire

  5. #5
    Okay...this is once again an-outside-the-box-type-reply, so don't beat me up, but I was thinking, what happened if you nixed the whole standard crib design and went with a corner crib?

    This would give you a longer opening, and allow the wheelchair to be placed close to the crib without outriggers. At the same time, you could still use a sliding door type system like you designed. With the crib angled across the front, it might make for more room with a mom in a wheelchair.

    The picture shows a curved front, but you might not need that. If youwentwith a straight section instead, and used a slider that goes from port to starboard instead of up and down, you might get the room you would need?

    One last thing. What an honor you have ahead of you. To build a crib for a child is a true accomplishment for a woodworker. To design and build a crib for a mother to be with disabilities is truly special unto its own. I wish you all the best of luck, in the design and project build itself.

    As I said, don't beat me up...just thinking outloud.

    Last edited by Travis Johnson; 02-08-2008 at 10:23 PM.
    I have no intention of traveling from birth to the grave in a manicured and well preserved body; but rather I will skid in sideways, totally beat up, completely worn out, utterly exhausted and jump off my tractor and loudly yell, "Wow, this is what it took to feed a nation!"

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Escondido, CA
    Posts
    5,169
    Another thought.

    Rather than have a sliding access door, how about lifting the side up like barrister book shelves. Plenty of hardware for that application. An easy locking system to keep it from swinging out would be a snap.

    The advantage would be to have full access to the mattress to assist in changing sheets and having better access to the child.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
    Location
    Cedar Park, TX
    Posts
    320
    We discussed several options when we first talked about it. We needed it raised up for wheelchair clearance so momma (and dad) can get right up close to the bed. We're also having to stick to a fairly thin mattress so as to maximize reach. We'd considered having the panels swing outward like one modified from a store bought crib some other folks posted on the net, but the sliders are a better option.

    The outriggers on the legs shouldn't need to be more than about 6 inches out with a diagonal brace. I would much rather see the bed with a long side on the wall and some sort of straps anchoring it, and I will approach them with that idea.

    She's got a table with clearance for the wheelchair already for diapering out of the bed. Allowing her chair to slide under the mattress support will get her in close enough to lift the baby out. Because the mattress is so high, I went with a "cage" that is 6 to 9 inches higher than the mattress than any of the other cribs I've look at.

    Hadn't thought of the lifting/swinging idea. I've got the head/foot boards done, but I may just ask them about that idea. I think I might be able to work that into the design at this point.

    The baby's first name is Denver, so I call him the "Mile High Kid" and with this crib, he's gonna be sleeping a mile high. It is really quite a scary honor to be asked to do this.
    Jerry

    http://www.sawdustersplace.com

    "If politics wasn't built on careful deception it wouldn't need its own word and techniques. It would just be called honesty, education, and leadership."
    Bob "Phydeaux" Stewart one day on Woodnet

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Location
    Mountain Home, Arkansas
    Posts
    11,828
    Think carefully before using a 'lift' type door. Safety issues come into play. A child's head caught in a door like that would be a very serious situation.
    "Folks is funny critters."

    Think for yourselves and let others enjoy the privilege to do so, too. ~Voltaire

  9. #9
    Jerry,

    Could you put drawers in the end where the side doesn't slide? The drawers located below the bed surface with maybe a slide out changing table could hold diapers and clothes. The additional weight would lower the center of gravity and be a useful addition.
    Ken
    ------



  10. #10
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Location
    St George,Ontario,Canada
    Posts
    43
    Jerry,

    There is a guy on the lumberjocks website that makes wheelchair accessable furniture. From what I've seen you might get some good ideas from him. His name is Russel I believe, and you can google his website. Google, "Village Lane Furniture".

    Stephan

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