The Emma X3 Off Road Wheelchair
by Ryan Grassley | April 23, 2021
In this post I’ll attempt to cover every nitty gritty detail of the Extreme Motus Emma X3 off road wheelchair. Below is a list of all the topics discussed in this article.
Table of Contents
- Aluminium Frame
- Low Pressure Wheels
- Adjustable Handlebar
- Disk Brakes
- Water Bottles
- Storage Options/luggage
- Folding for Storage
- Removing Wheels for Storage
- Pushing the X3 Off Road Wheelchair
- Turning the X3
- Floating in Water
- How Much Does It Cost?
The Emma X3 is an off road wheelchair that can do it all, but it’s primarily designed to be a hiking wheelchair. So it needs to be both lightweight and strong. This is why we choose to manufacture our chair from aluminum. We use a CNC lathe to cut solid aluminium bars into the frame that makes our wheelchair.
We take the aluminium bars that make up the wheelchair frame and send them to be anodized. We chose anodizing over powder coating because powder coating cannot withstand the same amount of abuse as an anodized metal.
Powder coating looks great, but can chip and scratch over time. Because this is a wheelchair made for the trail we want it to keep looking shiny for as long as possible.
Anodizing is an inorganic finish and inorganic finishes have superior hardness and scratch resistant properties when compared to organic finishes like powder coating.
Typically we offer the Emma X3 in red and blue. If you’re interested in a custom color please give us a call and we can make it happen.
The seat we use for the Emma X3 like the frame is lightweight aluminum. If you’ve ever built a custom race car this type of seat probably looks familiar. That’s because** it’s used in race cars to keep them as lightweight as possible**. Because the Emma X3 is a manual wheelchair we have done our best to trim weight wherever we can.
The cover can be easily removed with no tools, but the clip does kind of hide behind the wheel. A pair of needle nose pliers make this easier to get too, or can just easily remove the wheels if it’s giving you trouble.
If you take your chair in the water you should **remove the cover and hang it up so it can dry completely. **
You can order the seat for your Emma X3 in 3 different sizes. Small, Medium, and Large. The difference in these sizes only affects the width of the chair.
Sam who stars in most of our videos weighs 100 pounds, and he uses the medium sized chair. I weigh around 200 pounds and think the large chair is more comfortable, but can still squeeze into a medium. If you’re buying the X3 for a child then we recommend the small sized chair.
Low Pressure Wheels
The bigger a wheel is the easier it can to roll over an obstacle. The large low pressure wheels we use on our off road wheelchair allow the X3 to be pushed over grass, gravel, rocks, ice, snow, and even float in water.
At about 4 psi Wheeleez wheels also provide suspension for the rider. No fun to ride off-road if you have to feel every bump on that road.
These tires are made from a durable PVC material and so far I’ve never experienced a flat tire while on an adventure. With such low pressure the tires are soft enough to roll over most sharp rocks and thorns without creating a puncture.
But if a tire has air in it that air can someday find its way out. If you do get a flat tire it can be repaired with a soldering iron by melting the material back together. As this video shows even large slices can be repaired using this method.
Depending on the height of the person pushing the wheelchair you may find it necessary to adjust the handlebar. This is really easy to do with an allen key. Loosen one screw, place it at the desired height and tighten it back down.
It’s a good idea to keep a small mountain bike tool in the storage pack on your wheelchair just in case something needs to be adjusted while on an adventure.
Something that really sets the X3 apart from other off road wheelchairs are the disk brakes. They provide excellent stopping power because they are on the rear wheels directly under the rider where the center of gravity is.
While hiking on the red rock sandstone of the Utah desert the X3 seemed to have a limitless amount of stopping power because the tires gripped the rock so well, and the brakes are so strong.
Each wheel has its own brake handle and they can be operated independently. This can help when going down a hill to turn the chair left or right as you squeeze one handle more than the other.
You’ll feel comfortable and in control descending nearly any trail in the X3.
The frame of the X3 comes pre-drilled for 2 water bottle holders one on each side of the spine that leads to the handlebars behind the seat. We don’t want our ordering process to feel confusing and we don’t like to feel nickel and dimed when we are purchasing anything.
For these reasons every off road wheelchair we sell includes these water bottles and cages as standard equipment. Something many other companies charge extra for as an option.
The X3 also comes standard with 2 handy storage options. The first is a small pack that is mounted on the handle bars. Super convenient place to store smaller items like snacks or your smartphone that you might want quick access too.
The large pack that mounts behind the seat essentially one side of a bicycle pannier. It hangs from a metal rod inserted into the spine of the chair, and is kept from wobbling about with a bungee cord that attaches to the rear axle of the chair.
I like to use this bag to store a light jacket, lunch, camera gear, drone, etc. It’s a roll top bag and stands up to rain, but if you’re taking the X3 into the water we recommend removing it so your items don’t get soaked.
Folding for Storage
When you’re finished with your adventure and need to store the X3 you can simply remove 2 pins from the frame and it folds in seconds. The pins are attached to the frame with small ropes so they won’t get lost.
There are multiple holes in the frame and you can slightly change the angle of the frame, and how the chair sits. You should experiment with this to find out which setting you like the best.
Removing Wheels for Storage
The wheels attach to the brakes using the same method race cars use to quickly swap out tires in a pit stop. This allows the wheels to be quickly removed for storage or to be loaded into a smaller car.
To remove the wheels simply pull the pin from the axel. Take care not to lose the spacer that sits between the pin and tire. Slide the wheel off and you’re ready to go.
Removing the wheels does save you some space. However the axle makes the chair just as wide as if it had the tires on. Removing the axle is more difficult, it takes some tools and know how. We recommend leaving the axle in place after removing the wheels to avoid any headaches.
When it’s time to replace the wheels, slowly slide the wheel back on the axle and align the pins in the hub on the back side of the wheel with the holes on the disk brake.
The hub is fitted with magnets and you should be able to feel the disk snap against the magnets letting you know it’s in the right position.
Pushing the X3 Off Road Wheelchair
How easy it is to push the X3 depends on a few factors.
- How heavy is the person being pushed?
- How strong is the person pushing?
- What kind of terrain are you taking the X3 on?
- Is it uphill or downhill?
- Is it loose sand or packed sand?
My point is, it’s as easy or as difficult as you want it to be. If you want hardcore off road adventures the X3 can handle anything you throw at it. If you want long walks on the beach it’s great for that too.
In some of our videos when the going gets tough we need more than one person pushing and go shoulder to shoulder with one person on each side of the handle bar. The frame of the chair also has many places where you can attach ropes and have people pulling from the front as well.
On steep sections of a trail we have people both pulling and pushing to lighten the load, and keep the person in the wheelchair safe.
As someone who has pushed the Emma X3 a lot I can say that while it can be a work out, it’s also a very rewarding experience. Being able to take my friend Sam to places he’s never been able to visit makes both of us very happy.
Turning the X3
Because the front wheel of the Emma X3 is fixed you need to pop a wheelie to turn left or right. This is relatively easy to do because the center of gravity is over the back wheels.
But turning, like pushing, is also somewhat based on the weight of the rider and the strength of the person pushing. I find it very easy to walk with the front wheel in the air because of how the chair is balanced over the rear axle.
It might take a little bit of practice but it’s like riding a bicycle. Once you have the hang of it, it’s easy.
Floating in Water
The tires of the Emma X3 off road wheelchair are large enough to keep the chair buoyant in the water. I’ll never forget the first time we took Sam blasting across the sand and into the water at our nearby reservoir. He was having so much fun playing in the water instead of being stuck sitting on the shore baking in the sun.
Yes, the X3 does float, but that doesn’t mean it’s an ocean going vessel or a life saving device. The person sitting in the chair means it’s top heavy in the water, and if the person pushing lets go of the handlebars the chair will tip over.
So you will need to stay in calm, shallow water where the person who is pushing can keep both feet on the ground and stay completely in control of the wheelchair at all times.
We also recommend using a life jacket, and unbucking the seat belt when you decide to go into amphibious mode to keep everyone as safe as possible.
How Much Does It Cost?
The Emma X3 off road wheelchair currently sells for $4049.
This includes your choice of red or blue color. Small, medium, or large seat. Water bottles and cages. Handlebar storage compartment, and behind the seat pannier compartment. And independent disk brakes.
I hope this post along with the other information on our website gives you a good understanding of the Emma X3 off road wheelchair from Extreme Motus. You should now have a good idea of whether or not this is the right off road wheelchair for you and your needs.