Welcome to the GRIT Support Center! Here, you’ll find articles, links, photos, videos, manuals, and more, all designed to help you get back outside as soon as possible. Use the section headers to narrow your search.
Rather talk to a member of the GRIT team?
Phone: 617-356-8106, Email: email@example.com
Hours: M–F, 9:00AM–6:00PM ET
Comfort & Fit Questions
Can I move or modify the GRIT Freedom Chair seatbelt?
Every GRIT Freedom Chair comes with a seatbelt, but you may want to add additional belts or ratchet straps. We've designed our seat to easily accept these modifications.
The standard GRIT Freedom Chair seatbelt secures to the seat using M6 hardware with nyloc nuts. While this seatbelt alone works great for many, some have specific needs for positioning straps.
Conveniently, additional mounting points exist on the seat—these mounting points make it easy to reposition the existing seatbelt or add aftermarket positioning straps. Different straps may have different dimensions, padding, fastening mechanisms, and/or other features.
All factory mounting points on the GRIT Freedom Chair will fit M6 or ¼” hardware; whether adding or moving the standard belt, we recommend using the same kind of hardware.
See Image 1.0 for the available mounting points. Use a Philips screwdriver and a wrench to remove the existing bolts and then use those same tools to re-affix the belt in the position that works best for you.
Can I put push rims on my GRIT Freedom Chair?
Sure! However, the process is a bit tricky, so it is important to understand each step and find a qualified technician to perform the labor.
Because installing push rims requires specialized tools (like a drill press), extreme precision, and parts that aren't always easy to find, GRIT recommends you coordinate with a professional bicycle technician on every step of the process. It is imperative that you use the correct parts and that a trained professional handles all assembly.
An overview of the process: Acquire the appropriate wheels from one supplier, acquire the appropriate push rims from another supplier, acquire the torque couplings from GRIT, and then find a bike shop with the necessary tools and knowhow to drill into the wheels and install the push rims. Here's a detailed explanation of how to start from scratch and attach wheels with push rims to your GRIT Freedom Chair:
Step 1: Acquire the appropriate wheels. You will need 36-spoke, 15mm thru axle rims with an ISO 6-bolt disc brake pattern (i.e., mount for the couplings). Because most push rims have 6 tabs, it is far easier to install push rims on 36-spoke wheels than our standard 32-spoke wheels.
NOTE: You can install push rims on 32-spoke rims, but GRIT recommends against it. The tabs should be evenly distributed between the spokes. Since most push rims have 6 tabs, wheels with spoke counts divisible by 6 are preferred!
Standard GRIT Freedom Chair wheels are 559mm in diameter, max 26" x 2.25" with 32 spokes. Our hubs have a 15mm thru axle with 100 over-locknut-distance (OLD) and use an ISO 6-bolt disc mount for the couplings.
Step 2: Acquire the appropriate push rims. The push rims you'll need are 25" (559 mm), 6-tab push rims. Here is one third-party source, though others are available: https://enableyourlife.com/anodized-aluminum-6-tab-wheelchair-pushrim.asp
Step 3: Acquire the torque couplings. This is what connects wheels to the GRIT Freedom Chair and must be purchased through GRIT. To purchase the torque couplings, email firstname.lastname@example.org with that request and we will send an invoice your way.
Step 4: Connect with a qualified bike technician for the installation. Not every bike shop will have the necessary tools for this job; not every bike technician will be willing to drill into the wheels (a required step) to install the push rims. You may need to call around to find someone willing to take on the job. It is important that the holes for the push-rim tabs are measured and drilled precisely; not doing so can ruin the rims or render them unsafe for use.
Can I use different wheels on my GRIT Freedom Chair?
Sure! However, you’ll need to order the wheel couplings (the silver hubs that connect the wheels to the chair itself) from us. It is easy to add these custom-manufactured couplings to many different rims, as long as they are 559mm in diameter, max 26" x 2.25" with 36 spokes. You can then add any tube-and-tire combination you’d like.
You’ll want to reach out to us, but you have two options:
Purchase the wheel couplings and bolts by themselves, or
Purchase a set of fully assembled wheels.
Option 1 is the least expensive; option 2 will give you extra parts you can use in your adventures. Give us a ring at 617-356-8106 or email us at email@example.com and we’ll get this going!
I'd like more room for my legs. What should I do?
The foot plate can be easily adjusted with the seat post clamp, which secures the foot plate to the main frame. Open the seat post clamp, lower the foot plate, and re-tighten the clamp. If you'd like some more room, we recommend sitting on an extra cushion. This will not only give your legs some more room—you'll also achieve more torque on the levers! You can purchase a GRIT Wedge Cushion on our Accessories page.
GRIT also has other accessories that help riders of various heights find a comfortable place for their feet or legs. Go to our Accessories page and check out our Utility Clamp and its various options, for example.
Other riders have requested GRIT to custom build foot rests that give some more space for their legs to stretch out. If you'd like some more information or aren’t sure what option is best for you, let us know! 617-356-8106 and firstname.lastname@example.org are the best ways to reach us.
I’d like to add my own Steering Pegs. What should I do?
For people who want to install their own set of Steering Pegs, rider Justin G suggested a great setup. If you follow this link to Amazon (click here) you can find the set he uses. Below you’ll find further assembly tips and pictures provided by our riders Justin G and KC Z.
Pictures 1 & 2: Show how the pegs came in the box. Justin removed the hairpin, but keeps all the pieces together.
Picture 3: Shows the "anti-roll pin" (any nut and bolt will work). Just make sure it fits in the drop-out in the GRIT Freedom Chair fork and doesn't rub the wheel.
Picture 4: Shows the completed peg. The top bolt is the front wheel bolt, the bottom is the anti-roll mentioned in picture 3.
Picture 5: Shows a peg with the hairpin holding it together.
An Extra Note from Justin
“I don't have an Allen wrench that will fit the wheel bolt with the flipped peg on the bracket. So I install the bracket to the fork, then work the peg onto the bracket. The peg really only attaches to the bracket at one angle and can be tough, so I recommend trying a couple of times off of the fork to get a feel for how it goes together.”
Common (and Not-So-Common) Questions
Flying with the GRIT Freedom Chair: How does it work? What do I do? What happens if it gets damaged?
When flying with a GRIT Freedom Chair, we always recommend checking the chair at the gate. Take it with you through security, through the airport, and have an attendant tag the chair for you right at the gate. This is better than checking the chair with your luggage because it means the chair will be handled by fewer people, travel over fewer (or no) carousels, and be in your sight for as long as possible. When you check the chair at the gate, the attendants will carry it down the terminal staircase, place it into the plane, and bring it back out to you when you land.
How to identify and address damage
1) When you land and put eyes on your chair, always give it an inspection. Check that the wheels spin freely. Check that the front fork is straight. Check that the seat back is in good condition. Check that the footplate is still attached. If there's any damage that wasn't there when you boarded:
2) Let an attendant know, immediately. They will have you fill out an accident or damage report, which will get the repair process going. It is extremely important that you address this before leaving the airport. Otherwise, it may not be clear that the damage happened at the airport (and not at the coffee shop down the street). Make sure to leave your email and phone number on the form so the airline can easily contact you. You can also add the GRIT contact information (email@example.com, 617-356-8106), as we will likely be involved in the next steps!
3) Call GRIT. Whether you've just arrived at your vacation destination or are just getting home, we want to do what we can to get your chair back in action. We'll follow the airline's protocol, but we can also give you the parts or tips you need to use your chair safely, while the airline process moves forward. Call at 617-356-8106 or email firstname.lastname@example.org and we'll help you ASAP.
4) The airline (or the third-party, damage-repair company they have hired) will then contact you. This follow-up is usually to say "yes, this damage was our fault" and "here's what we need to move forward with the repairs." They'll communicate with GRIT to find out how best to address the damages. We'll work with you to get photos, videos, and a description of the damage to find out what can be repaired and what needs to be replaced.
5) GRIT will invoice the airline or third-party company for the replacement parts or repairs. They will pay that invoice. GRIT will send you any necessary replacement parts.
6) The parts of the GRIT Freedom Chair are generally easy to swap in and out, but some repairs may need to be handled by a bike shop. If that is the case, GRIT can help you find one, or we can discuss the repairs/replacements with you over the phone. It can be stressful to have to go through any of this, so we're here to help however we can.
Let GRIT know what's happening. We'll help move things along.
If your GRIT Freedom Chair was damaged while under the airline's supervision, they do require some information to handle things properly (usually photos/videos of the damage), but with patience and communication, you'll be rolling again before you know it.
If you have any questions about traveling, damage assessment, or anything else, send us a message at email@example.com.
What tools do I need? What kind of maintenance should I do on my GRIT Freedom Chair?
Whether you're going on a vacation, a Spartan Race, a long hike, or just want to be prepared for anything that comes your way, read more below!
To be fully prepared for what your next adventure throws at you, read below for a list of useful tools.
· Phillips screwdriver. The first tool in adjusting chain tensioning (see under How-To Videos below for Tensioning the Chains video). Tip size #3 is best. A 3” shank or longer will allow you to access the tension screws.
· Adjustable wrench. This is the second tool required for chain tensioning. (A 13mm wrench is best, but pliers can work, too).
· Allen (hex) keys. Common sizes: 5mm (for the headset and parking brakes), 7/32” (to tighten V1 Trail Handles). Less-common sizes include: 6mm (to tighten V2 Trail Handles), 4mm (to remove parking brake handles)
· Bike pump. Always make sure your air is filled to the correct pressure. 40 PSI is a safe number to remember for all three tires. Schrader valves (not Presta) come standard on the GRIT Freedom Chair (the same valve as automobile tires).
· Backup tube (or tubes). See more information below at "I have a flat tire!" on what tubes you’ll need. Tire levers can make tire removal and tube change even easier, and patches can help if you don’t have a tube.
· Electrical tape. If your levers are wrapped in tape (not lever sleeves) a strip of electrical tape will keep them from unraveling.
· Lubricants. These keep your chain and other parts moving extra smoothly. GRIT commonly uses “Tri-Flow” brand PTFE lubricant on the chain and seat back.
· Water/snacks. Using the GRIT Freedom Chair is a workout! Make sure you stay hydrated and energized. Some bike bags and water-bottle cages work well, too.
· Always: Keep your GRIT Freedom Chair out of the rain when not in use. The frame is zinc-plated and covered with a high-quality powder-coat, but excessive exposure to rain and moisture will decrease the life of the frame. If it gets wet, dry it with a clean towel. Keep the bearings and other moving parts free of sand and fine particles.
· Before every ride: Check to make sure the tires are not flat. Make sure the chains are greased and not sagging. If there is dirt on your chains, clean and re-grease them. Confirm that parking brakes are adjusted for your tires.
· Every two weeks: Inflate your tires. 40 psi is a safe number to remember for all three tires.
· Every month: Make sure the chains are greased and tighten them if necessary. Actuate the wheels and drivetrain to confirm everything is moving smoothly.
· After a beach trip: If you ride your GRIT Freedom Chair at the beach or near the ocean, hose it down with fresh water to clean off the salt and sand from the frame, chain, and wheels. Grease the chain after hosing it down. Dry your chair with a clean towel. Submersing or pressure-washing the GRIT Freedom Chair can displace the grease in bearings, so take care to inspect rotating parts if this has occurred.
I have a flat tire!
Here is everything you need to know about replacing the tubes in the front tires or rear tires of your GRIT Freedom Chair.
Rear Tire Tubes – Standard Mountain Bike Tires
The rear tires are mountain bike tires, which means they have standard bicycle tubes. To replace those tubes, you’ll need 26” x 1.5/1.75" tubes with Schrader valves. Any bike shop will have these tubes; they’re also easy to find online. Because these are standard tubes, there are tons of options out there—standard, puncture-resistant, slimed, etc. Ask your bike technician if you’re unsure about which variation is best for you.
Once you have the new tube, you can follow the instructions for tube replacement on a bicycle. Do a quick online search for “how to replace a bike tire tube” and those instructions will get you back and rolling (like these).
Rear Tire Tubes – Pro Model or Sand/Snow Wheels
The GRIT Freedom Chair: Pro and our Sand/Snow Tires use slightly wider tubes that measure 26” x 2.0”. You can use dedicated 2” tubes or the 1.5/1.75” tubes used on the standard mountain bike tires—they will all be compatible.
Front Tire Tube
The front tire tube is a bit different than the rear tire tubes. The front tire on the GRIT Freedom Chair is a mountain board tire and is composed of two rim halves clamped together. The tube for the front tire measures 2.80"/2.50"-4".
One of our riders, Tyler, wrote the step-by-step instructions for the tube-replacement process—see them below!
Step 1: Remove your front wheel from the front fork assembly using a 5mm Allen key and 1/2” box wrench to secure the axle.
Step 2: Squeeze the tire while depressing the valve stem to break bead (i.e., break the connection of the wheel to the rim).
Step 3: Begin the process of separating the rim halves by removing the bolts in the three arms of the wheel hub.
Step 4: Split the two rim halves, making sure not to lose any small parts. Remove the flat tube.
Step 5: Slightly inflate the new tube and insert it into the tire.
Step 6: Screw the two halves of rim back together, taking care to ensure that the valve stem is centered in its respective hole within the rim. The locating tabs will help with this.
Step 7: Fully inflate the new tube (45 PSI is a good benchmark).
Step 8: Slide axle through the new wheel. Remember to add the spacing ring as well.
Step 9: Reattach the axle and wheel to front fork.
Step 10: Done!
How do I check the tire pressure? What should the pressure be?
Checking the tire pressure in your GRIT Freedom Chair is as easy as checking it on a bicycle. Here is some information you may find helpful!
To check the tire pressure on any of the three wheels on your GRIT Freedom Chair, simply access the valve (some valves have caps while others do not). Once you can see the valve, attach a tire gauge to the valve—noting whether you have a Presta or Schrader valve. If you need to add more air to your tires, swap your tire gauge for a tire pump and inflate!
We recommend a PSI of 45 for both the front and the rear tires. You may find it useful to decrease your tire pressure in snow or mud and increase it when traveling on pavement or concrete.
My front wheel wobbles when I go really fast. Is that normal?
This is called caster flutter and is easy to fix! Some wobble at high speeds is normal and is a phenomenon known as caster flutter. Speed, as you know, is the primary cause of caster flutter. You can reduce its effect by slightly tightening the top bolt of the headset above the front wheel.
Remember: You don't want the bolt super tight, as you still want the front wheel to be able to rotate freely, but if you tighten the bolt until you start to feel some resistance to the wheel rotation, then you should be able to reduce the flutter and get back to the races.
If you’ve checked the tightness of that bolt and the wheel still seems like it’s wobbling more than it should, let’s chat! Give us a call at 617-356-8106 or send us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org and we’ll be happy to help you troubleshoot.
Can I swap out the chain rings on my GRIT Freedom Chair?
Absolutely! Before you do, though, read a bit about why you'd want to and how it'll change your riding experience.
The chain rings are -- like most parts on the GRIT Freedom Chair -- components you can purchase online or at your local bike shop. While you can certainly add larger chain rings, there are some things to keep in mind before you do.
Chain rings are the circular, spiked, metal pieces whose teeth guide your chain over the drivetrain. Chain rings come in all sizes, often measured by their teeth count. The bigger the chain ring, the harder your GRIT Freedom Chair will be to push; however, bigger chain rings also mean you can cover more ground with each stroke.
The chain ring that comes standard on GRIT Freedom Chairs are 4-bolt, 64mm, 26-tooth chain rings. This, we've found, is the "Goldilocks Solution" in that it isn't too big or too small. A larger chain ring would make it especially difficult to gain momentum on grass, snow, sand, or uneven terrain; a smaller chain ring would make it much more difficult to get up to speed on flat or paved terrain. Because some riders want to stick on pavement and others want to stick to rough terrain (and we encourage riders to do both!) the 26-tooth chain ring was a good way to allow that to happen.
That being said, some GRIT Freedom Chair riders only use their chairs on paved roads and want to go as fast as possible (e.g., those looking to compete in road races). These riders are the perfect candidates for a chain ring upgrade. The biggest chain ring you can add to a GRIT Freedom Chair is a 32-tooth ring. Remember, though, the extra diameter of a chainring that size will make it tough to get up to speed, especially if you're tackling roots, rocks, or loose terrain.
Adding a larger chain ring will alter the chair's center of gravity; combat this by adding an additional 1-2 extra links to each chain.
If you're looking to go faster, the first modification you should consider is the Drivetrain Upgrade. This is going to give you the most "bang for your buck" as far as speed is concerned. To order or learn more about this accessory, check out our Accessories page here.
Can I swap out the chains on my GRIT Freedom Chair?
Yes! The chains on GRIT Freedom Chairs are standard bike chains, so any bike shop (online or brick-and-mortar) will have the chains you’ll need. Standard GRIT Freedom Chair chains are 9-speed, 3/32” chains. There are 55 links in each chain, plus one master link (for the master links, we use SRAM powerlinks or KMC missing-link style links). Please see the photo of a GRIT Freedom Chair chain, for reference.
My levers got stuck in the wheel spokes. What do I do?
Don't panic and don't force anything too hard. While this situation is rare, there are easy ways out of it.
When a lever falls between the spokes of the rear wheels, it can often be tempting to brute-force it back out again. Don't get us wrong—a little wiggling is fine, but you shouldn't ever rip or push the lever against the spoke. Doing this runs the risk of breaking a spoke, which requires special tools and equipment to fix.
Instead of forcing the lever out, the best course of action is the remove the wheel itself. To do this, first press the button on the axle in the center of the wheel. This will disengage the wheel from the axle receiver. You should be able to pull the wheel off of the axle receiver (with the lever still in it). Depending on how far the lever is jammed, you may have to wiggle the wheel or the lever—the lever should be able to move an inch or two (forward or backward), which should give you the clearance to remove it. Turning the wheel a bit—being careful not to force the spokes too roughly against the lever—can free up some space, too. It may be helpful to have a friend focus on the lever while you focus on pulling off the wheel.
What kind of modifications can I make to my GRIT Freedom Chair without voiding the warranty?
Many of our riders modify their GRIT Freedom Chairs to improve their performance, comfort, or just to make them look outright awesome. But where is the line? Read more to find out what adjustments are okay and what ones aren't.
Here at GRIT, we encourage riders to make modifications and personalized upgrades to their GRIT Freedom Chairs. After all, once the chair is yours, you should make it as comfortable, stylish, and perfect for you as possible. Some popular additions include custom lever wraps, custom wheel-spoke wraps, stands for phones, cup holders, leg rests, and more!
However, it is important to know when a particular modification risks voiding the GRIT Freedom Chair warranty. Certain modifications may affect the integrity of the chair, cause performance or structural issues, or negatively affect key functionalities or design elements of the chair. Here's the rule of thumb:
Any modification that prevents the chair from being returned to its original state will void the warranty.
Looking to design a custom bracket that wraps around the boom of the chair to hold an accessory bag? Your warranty is safe! Need to drill a hole through the boom to make this bracket fit on? Warranty is not safe! Any cutting, drilling, sawing, breaking, or bending is usually going to void the warranty. Of course, voiding the warranty isn't the end of the world, but if you plasma-weld a custom lawnmower attachment to your GRIT Freedom Chair frame, please understand GRIT can't be responsible for any consequential performance issues.
Not sure if your modification will void the warranty? Contact us at email@example.com and we'll let you know.
I am past the 30-day trial period but can no longer use the GRIT Freedom Chair. What should I do?
We understand that while the GRIT Freedom Chair may have initially been a great match for you or your loved one, things happen, setbacks happen—life happens.
If after 30 days, you or your loved one can no longer use the GRIT Freedom Chair, we want to help you get it to someone who can. Many organizations will keep a GRIT Freedom Chair on-hand for use in events, hikes, races, competitions, and even temporary rental. Here are a few places to start:
· Adaptive Sports and Recreation Organizations: The GRIT Freedom Chair is often perfect for these groups. Adaptive sports organizations host events, competitions, leagues, and more. They strive to connect adults and kids with disabilities to the satisfaction and competition of sports—and they can almost always take advantage of a GRIT Freedom Chair.
· Schools & School Districts: Even if a school has just one GRIT Freedom Chair, many students over many years will be able to take advantage of it. Contact your local school or after school program to see if they’d be able to use a GRIT Freedom Chair.
· Summer Camps & Adventure Camps: These organizations are dedicated to the pursuit of adventure in all forms. They provide the staffing and equipment that allow people with physical disabilities or mobility impairments to go hiking, trail riding, snowshoeing, to the beach, and more— all of which can be made better with a GRIT Freedom Chair.
· Other Veteran Associations: Many organizations are dedicated to physically and financially helping veterans. For example, Oscar Mike and Operation Enduring Warrior help injured veterans access adaptive sports.
· Trail Associations: These groups provide stewardship, mentorship, trail maintenance, education, orientation trips, and more. They often coordinate hikes and are always working to make trails more accessible.
Click here for more information on specific organizations that utilize GRIT Freedom Chairs in their programming.
Need help finding a new home for your GRIT Freedom Chair?
We speak with tons of organizations every week, many of which would love the opportunity to have a used GRIT Freedom Chair. We're happy to make an introduction or even help facilitate the donation. Want to donate the chair to a specific kind of organization but unsure about where to start? No problem. Contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
How should I care for my GRIT Freedom Chair after a beach trip?
Salt and sand can be very damaging to bicycles and GRIT Freedom Chairs alike. Follow these simple steps to protect your chair and to keep rolling smoothly!
Salt spray and beach sand can affect the gearing, chains, and the rust protection of your GRIT Freedom Chair. Thankfully, it's real easy to prevent serious damage by:
1) Hosing down your GRIT Freedom Chair with a hose after you've ridden it on the beach. The goal is to remove as much sand and salt as possible.
2) After hosing down the chains, lubricate them.
3) Just as the chains need to be lubricated, it is a good idea to tend to the nipples in the wheel spokes and other moving parts (some sources recommend lubricating the spokes every time they get wet or are at the beach). All moving parts on the GRIT Freedom Chair are greased to ensure easy and smooth operation; because water and salt can wash or erode this grease away, it is always a good idea to re-lubricate these parts.
4) If the chair will be parked outside near a beach, it isn't a bad idea to cover it. Some riders do this with grill covers or tarps, but as long as you're putting a barrier between your chair and the harmful effects of salt spray, you'll be in good shape.
How should I store my GRIT Freedom Chair when I'm not using it?
You may not use the GRIT Freedom Chair as your primary wheelchair, and that's fine! Here are a few things to consider when storing it.
- It may save you some space to quasi-disassemble your GRIT Freedom Chair. Remove the two rear wheels and the seat back to make the chair easier to store.
- Make sure the GRIT Freedom Chair is at no risk of being placed in standing water, as this could damage the paint and the working parts of the chair.
- If storing your GRIT Freedom Chair outside, be especially careful to protect it from the elements. Some riders use grill covers or tarps—storing your chair in a shed, under a pavilion, or in a garage would be best!
- Note that, depending how long you've kept your GRIT Freedom Chair in storage, you may have to re-inflate the tires and re-grease and re-tighten your chains. This is totally normal and no different from the maintenance one would expect to perform on a bicycle.
Routine Maintenance and Care: What to Do
What should you do before every ride? Every two weeks? Every month?
· Before every ride: Check to make sure the tires are not flat and the chains are not sagging. Confirm that parking brakes are adjusted for your tires.
· Every two weeks: Inflate your tires. We recommend that you inflate the rear wheels to 45 PSI and the front wheel to 40 PSI. Your user manual has detailed information about tire pressures; proper tire pressure ranges are also moulded on the sidewall of the tires. Riders can adjust pressure to their preferences and terrains, within this range.
· Every month: Make sure the chains are greased and tighten them if necessary. We recommend bike chain lube or other lubricants like Tri-Flow. Actuate the wheels and drivetrain to confirm that everything is moving smoothly and nothing is rubbing.
Caring for Your Chair
· Keep your GRIT Freedom Chair dry and out of the rain when not in use. The frame is zinc-plated and covered with a high-quality powder-coat, but excessive exposure to rain and moisture will decrease the life of the frame. If it gets wet, dry it with a clean towel.
· Keep your chains greased. We recommend inspecting your chains monthly. If they appear dry or rusted, add a few drops of bicycle chain grease. If they are sandy or filled with dirt, clean the chains and then re-grease.
· Keep the bearings and other moving parts free of sand and fine particles.
· If you ride your GRIT Freedom Chair at the beach or near the ocean, hose it down with fresh water to clean off the salt and sand from the frame, chain, and wheels. Grease the chain after hosing it down. Dry off your chair with a clean towel. Submersing or pressure washing the GRIT Freedom Chair can displace the grease in bearings, so take care to inspect rotating parts if this has occurred.
· Make sure the tires are kept inflated to the PSI noted on the sidewall of the tire. We recommend 45 PSI.
Can I return my chair?
The paint on my levers is wearing off. Is this okay?
After a fair amount of use, the powder coat on your levers may start to wear off, especially where the lever engages with the wheel. Don't worry! Here's why.
The black powder coat on your levers is purely cosmetic. As you are now seeing, beneath that black powder coat is the steel core of the levers. Wearing away the powder coat is completely normal and, believe it or not, will actually enhance the performance of the levers.
Our steel levers are protected with a zinc chromate plating that has a higher coefficient of friction (COF) than the layer of black powder coat. A higher COF means more friction between the lever and the wheel, which means faster and easier braking. The rubber tires will never be compromised by the contact with the steel.
All this being said, if the metal itself is wearing away (i.e., there's a hole in your lever), you are putting the levers to the test—and that is great. However, you may want to replace your lever(s) to make sure the braking mechanism is in safe and functional condition. If you've worn a hole in your lever(s), contact us at email@example.com and we'll get you set up with some new levers.
Why do my chains keep loosening?
This is normal! Brand-new bike chains tend to stretch out and loosen, especially during the first couple of months of use or when a GRIT Freedom Chair is put under high stress. Tension your chains using the following instructions. See the Tensioning the Chains How-To Video below or the GRIT Freedom Chair User Manual for help tensioning the chains. If the problem persists after those first couple of months, please let us know! Give us a call at 617-356-8106 and a member of the GRIT team will be glad to help you troubleshoot these issues.
Why does pushing the levers not immediately turn the wheels?
Check the tension of your chains, adjust your push stroke, and find a wide and flat area.
If there is a delay/lag between when you push your GRIT Freedom Chair levers and when the wheels turn, you should first check the tension of your chains. See below for a video to see the process.
Delayed engagement can also happen when riding the chair in a confined space, engaging the levers with inconsistent strokes, or traveling at high speeds. Move your chair to a wide-open, flat space and engage the levers with slow, deliberate strokes. Are you still experiencing delayed engagement? Give us a call at 617-356-8106 and we’ll be glad to help find a solution.
Why doesn’t my GRIT Freedom Chair roll straight?
Make sure your GRIT Freedom Chair fork is centered, the headset is vertical, and the chains are tensioned. Also confirm that side slope is not an issue.
Every GRIT Freedom Chair is both visually examined and roll-tested before shipment. However, here are a few checks to make sure everything is working as it should:
Step #1: Confirm that your front wheel centered in the fork.
Your front wheel should be positioned in the center of the fork (the metal bracket that holds the wheel onto the frame). To make sure this is the case, safely lean the GRIT Freedom Chair backward so the back rest is against the floor. You can also move in front of the chair to get a head-on view of the chair. Next, examine the wheel. Is it centered or is it shifted to the left or right? Next, tap the wheel with your hand to spin it. As the wheel is spinning, look at the center tread—is it spinning straight or snaking left and right? If the latter, take a photo or video of your fork to firstname.lastname@example.org and a GRIT team member will contact you with next steps.
Step #2: Confirm that your headset is vertical.
The headset holds the fork to the frame of your GRIT Freedom Chair. It lives above the fork and front wheel and should be vertical. To confirm that this is the case, lean the GRIT Freedom Chair backward so the back rest is against the floor. You can also move in front of the chair to get a head-on view of the chair. Next, inspect the headset. Everything in the headset should be vertical. If you suspect it’s angled, take a photo of the headset (from the front) and email it to email@example.com, and a GRIT team member will contact you with next steps.
Step #3: Confirm that your chains are properly tensioned.
If the chains aren’t equally tensioned, it’ll cause one side of your GRIT Freedom Chair to move faster than the other. See the Tensioning the Chains video under How-To Videos for help tensioning the chains.
Step #4: Make sure side slope isn't causing the issue.
Most roads are intentionally built with side slope to allow water to run away from the center of the street and toward the drains. While drainage is important, it creates a hassle for anyone in wheelchairs and GRIT Freedom Chairs. Ride your GRIT Freedom Chair in both directions on the same side of the street (making sure there is no traffic!) and then over grass. This will help determine if side slope could be part of the problem.
Why is there a popping sound when I push the levers?
First, check the tension on your chains. Next, send us a photo or video of your frame.
Don’t worry! This is likely due to normal chain stretch that happens with the GRIT Freedom Chair (and bicycles) during the first couple of months of use. While unnerving, the sounds can most often be traced back to the chains—when loose, they can skip teeth and “pop.” See our How-To Videos below for help tensioning the chains.
If tensioning the chains doesn’t help, it’s a good idea to inspect your frame. While uncommon, a misaligned frame can also cause this popping sound. If you think a misaligned frame could be the issue, send a picture or video of the underside of your GRIT Freedom Chair to firstname.lastname@example.org. This photo should show the two horizontal bars that are perpendicular to the T-frame/main tube. Once we receive that photo, a GRIT team member will contact you with next steps.
Can I put my GRIT Freedom Chair on rollers for an indoor workout?
Step #1: Put your rear wheels on rollers. Motorcycle-wheel cleaning stands (like the ones below) are perfect.
Above: Michelle also uses steel jacks (red) to keep her chair stable.
Step #2: Fix or dock your front wheel. Either build your own frame out of wood or purchase a trailer wheel dock to prevent your front wheel from moving.
Above: Michelle uses a homemade wooden frame to fix her front wheel.
Above: Tim (aka “Gator”) opts to fix his front wheel with a trailer wheel dock. Note that he also uses the motorcycle wheel cleaning stands for his rear wheels.
Step #3: Exercise! Just like that, you can pump your levers through any weather and any season— all from the comfort of your own home. Did you find another way to set your chair up on rollers? Share it with others in the the GRIT Freedom Chair Rider Group on Facebook (click here)!
What's the narrowest tire you can put on a GRIT Freedom Chair wheel?
Different tire widths yield different kinds of performances. Street riders typically want narrower tires, while offroad riders typically prefer wider tires. You can replace standard GRIT Freedom Chair tires with others, but it is important to select tires that will seat safely on the rims. Going too wide or too narrow can be problematic.
Standard GRIT Freedom Chair wheel rims are 21mm interior. Because of this, the narrowest tire we'd recommend is 1.4" wide. The widest tire we'd recommend is 2.25" wide.
Some riders have gone above and below these thresholds with great success, but staying between 1.4" and 2.25" will ensure a safe and secure fit, so you can focus on the adventure ahead.
How do I install the headset and front wheel?
The GRIT Freedom Chair requires very little assembly, but the headset (which connects the front fork to the boom of the chair) does need to be installed. Here's how to do it!
Tensioning the Chains
Like the chains on a single-speed bicycle, the chains on the GRIT Freedom Chair can become loose and require tightening. Here's what ideal chain tension looks like and how you can adjust your chain tension to match.
Inflating Your GRIT Freedom Chair Tires
The GRIT Freedom Chair uses bike wheels (mountain bike, street bike, etc.). You can inflate the tires using a standard bike pump. In this tutorial, we explain how the valves work.
As with any device using pneumatic tires (those filled with pressurized gas or air), it is important to keep an eye on your tire pressure. Different rides and different performance goals require different tire pressures; checking your tire pressure is an easy way to make sure you're moving as efficiently as possible.
For general use, GRIT recommends keeping all three GRIT Freedom Chair wheels at 45 PSI. If going out for a pavement-only ride, increase your tire PSI by a bit; if going out for a rough-terrain-only ride, decrease your tire PSI. Refer to the inner wall of the wheel for the manufacturer-declared PSI ranges.
Below, see one of GRIT's founders and engineers, Ben, talk about how to inflate those tires!
Loading and Unloading Your GRIT Freedom Chair Into a Vehicle
The GRIT Freedom Chair fits easily into vehicles ranging in size from small sedans to larger SUVs! Check out the below videos for some examples.
When purchasing any kind of mobility device, it is important to consider transportation. After all, what good is an all-terrain wheelchair (or any wheelchair) if you can't take it where you can use it!
The GRIT Freedom Chair is designed to be easily assembled, disassembled, and transported in almost any imaginable vehicle. We've seen our riders load their GRIT Freedom Chairs into Toyota Priuses, pickup trucks, inside or on top of minivans, and even in trailers towed behind their motorcycles. Some vehicles have enough space to hold a fully assembled GRIT Freedom Chair; others require some parts of the chair to be taken off. No matter what you're driving, the team at GRIT wants to make sure you can get out and enjoy the chair, wherever you want to take it. Below are a few videos showing how other riders have put their GRIT Freedom Chairs into their vehicles.
Adjusting Your Parking Brakes
The parking brakes on the GRIT Freedom Chair are adjustable to accommodate a range of riding conditions and even different wheels. In this video, Mario explains how to adjust the position of the parking brakes.
How to Roll Backward in Your GRIT Freedom Chair
Are you stuck against a curb, wall, or something else? Here are some helpful tips for getting out!
The GRIT Freedom Chair comes with a built-in hill-hold feature that prevents you from rolling backward on inclines. While this feature can be a huge benefit on inclines, it means going backward at all may take some getting used to. Check out the video below for some helpful tips!
General Tips: Using Levers, Changing Gears, Steering
This short video covers some basic tips about riding the GRIT Freedom Chair. You'll learn how to use the levers for propulsion: a special technique for climbing steep hills. We'll also show you how the levers are inserted into the drivetrain as well as how you can remove them and store them on the frame.
Setting Up Your GRIT Freedom Chair
Installing the Fork and Front Wheel
When you receive your GRIT Freedom Chair, you will need to install the fork, which holds the front wheel. This is the only assembly step that requires a tool, which we include in your box. In this video, we explain how to install it.
Please see the below video for instructions on installing the front fork! If you have any questions about the process, give us a ring at 617-356-816 or email our team at email@example.com.
There is extra space on one wheel. Is it on all the way?
This is normal! Check the button on the wheel.
As long as the button at the end of the axles is popped out and you can’t pull the wheel off, the wheel is securely attached. A slight difference in spacing is okay (and often intentional, depending on the wheel set you are using).
Check the parking brake, the wheel coupling, or give us a call!
Why aren’t my wheels attaching all the way?
It is possible that the parking brake is preventing secure attachment of the wheels; you may need to adjust the parking brake for your specific wheelset. This is common on GRIT Freedom Chairs with larger wheels such as the Sand/Snow Wheels. See the GRIT Freedom Chair User Manual or watch this video for help adjusting the parking brakes.
Another possibility is a misaligned wheel coupling (the components that attach the wheels to the rest of the GRIT Freedom Chair). To check this, try switching the wheels to the opposite sides of the GRIT Freedom Chair. If both go in, it’s not the wheel coupling.
Why won’t my footrest stay in place?
Tighten and realign the quick-release level clamp.
Your first step should be to tighten the quick-release lever clamp. Do this by tightening the nut opposite the clamp arm and attempt to lock down the clamp. At this point, also make sure the clamp is behind the footrest tube and closing over the slot in the tube— this will maximize clamping force.
Note: A small batch of chairs that shipped out in June 2018 had a defect that prevented the quick-release lever clamp from securely holding the footrest. We shipped out the necessary replacement parts to anyone whose chair was in this batch and have amended our production process to prevent the issue from happening again. Still, if you’re having trouble securing your footrest, please let us know!