Sunday, 26 January 2014

Cheap home-made mobility aid for getting in and out of a car

Make your own set of styrofoam steps to help with disability transfers into an automobile.
Buy a 2 ft x 8 ft. rigid blue styrofoam panel with a thickness of about 2- 3/8".
Cut it into two panels 1' x 8'.
Split one panel into two 4' lengths.
Click to enlarge.
Split the second panel in two lengths at 32" and two lengths at 16".
Using a caulking gun, apply a few beads of panel caulk to bond them in pairs (hiding the printed faces).
Then bond the pair of 16" to one end of the pair of 32".
Then bond that assembly to one end of the pair of 48".
Wrap it up to protect from dirt, oil and water.
I used a roll of the plastic stretch film they sell for wrapping loose things together when you move.

The result is a light-weight three-step pathway for someone to get aboard your car or truck. No step

Six pounds, easy to pick up one-handed, easy to store.
is higher than five inches.  It sits steady on the ground and isn't slippery.  Our 95 year old step mother needs a walker and can barely step up onto a curb.  She says it's slick and climbs in and out of a VW van with it. Best of all, she climbs and seats herself unaided.

I think I paid about $35 for the styrofoam, $6 for wrap from U-Haul, and $6 for the caulking,  We had a caulking gun in the shed.  I used a hand-saw to cut the panel which produced some clingy blue bits to clean up afterwards.

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