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A carbon fiber composite wheelchair

News International-French

29 Oct 2014

Carbon Black constructed a wheelchair almost entirely from carbon fibre to the customer sizing and configuration requirements. The full carbon fibre form gives ease of pushing with shock absorbing properties for smooth, minimal vibration rolling. 

The company remit when designing Carbon Black was to create the ultimate lightweight wheelchair aimed at the active, independent user to whom style matters as much as practicality. Not only did Carbon Black have to be a very minimal, lightweight wheelchair it had to be robust, it had to be a workhorse for everyday use. The aesthetic form of Carbon Black is the result of a chair built to make life as a wheelchair user easier. The ease of use principles in the design were then combined with the engineering requirements of carbon fibre. The result is a monocoque based design that can be built to bespoke measurements and accessorised with a range of options.

A monocoque design does not have a separate frame - the seat itself is a key part of the structure, creating a strong, stiff chair, using the least components possible. All the key parts can be quickly and easily detached via quick release, making it easier to transport. The wheelchair only weights 8.5 kg inc wheels and tyres.

Use of carbon fibers absorbs bumps for a smoother ride: The monocoque has suspension qualities without the weight and loss of pushing performance common with conventional wheelchair suspension.

Carbon Black offers a disc braking system that locks the hubs of both wheels simultaneously using one lever. The brake lever is seamlessly moulded into the seat edge so it never gets snagged on anything and never traps thumbs when pushing the chair. By integrating the design into the chair, there are no visible cables, which keeps the lines of the monocoque clean.

Carbon Black wheels have been purpose designed to be a lightweight wheelchair wheels. Energy efficiency (ease of pushing) is unparalleled by any other wheelchair wheel due to our extensive use of carbon fibre and tyre type. The company offer 26” and 28” wheels made almost entirely from carbon fibre. The company knows how important weight saving is to the active user, their largest wheel when fitted with a tyre weighs only 1.3kg.

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