|Ratcheting PVC cutter|
Cuts through pipe like buttah'
Switch. Check. (ablenet.com)
PVC piping. Check. (local neighborhood hardware store)
Nuts and Bolts. Check. (local neighborhood hardware store)
Kill Switch. Check. (amazon.com)
A husband to help me rewire. Check.
Once my Mr. Fix-It helped to rewire and solder the gas pedal to the switch, I got my Ratcheting PVC cutters out. These are a necessary tool if you work with PVC. Worth every penny. I also got to steal Mr. Fix-Its Dremel tool and new Milwaukee Power Drill to perforate the holes in the piping and the truck to install the support frame.
Finishing touches included good ole pipe insulation, duct tape to provide a softer support to the bracing, and industrial Velcro for a lap belt and shoulder support. And voila, Pimp My Ride: John Deer Power Wheels edition was complete.
|My son testing it out|
Though not 100% complete, I still need to set a secondary switch for a right cheek activation site, this project is well on its way to fulfilling its purpose: increasing participation amongst children with multiple disabilities during free time play. I actually wish that I had considered completing a research study on its effects on social participation. Maybe next year....
Overall, I would consider this an advanced project due to the nature of adaptation and tools needed. If I didn't have my husband's support, I don't think it would have made it out of my basement. Also, there are a significant amount of obstacles. First, logistics. The size of the vehicle is big. It's a two-seater. And even though we removed the dump bed from the truck, it is still large to store (ask my co workers). So if you are considering doing a project like this, you need to examine your storage capacity. You also have to respect administration for your building. I am lucky to work with educators and facility managers that don't mind my therapeutic antics. Second, cost. Though the power wheels was donated, I purchased most of the materials. PVC is cheap; foam insulation is cheap; switches can be costly. I completed this for under $50 but I had a lot of materials and tools already. Third, overall understanding of positioning and access sites. Position of the body is key to accessing life, including switches. If a child is not supported appropriately and safely, the participation in motorized play will not be successful.
|Sea Choice Universal Kill Switch|
Available through amazon.com