As some of you may know, product development is never a completed process. It has been brought to our attention that there are a few issues with our cup holder.
The first issue is that of the Velcro straps, and one we’re aware of, but was a trade-off for making it a removable product. Whenever you have a beverage, of course you’ll want your cup holder attached, but when it’s not in use, to avoid irritation of your arm constantly running over the strap, the simplest method is to take the drink holder off of your armrest. Some individuals have just taken one of the extra foam pads and placed it over the straps. This causes a big problem, so we advise against this particular method. You have to position the straps just right so the product remains removable. If you’re okay with never having to take off the product, great, this will work. A better way is to cut up the extra foam pad (similar to cutting the pad into strips and placing it on the interior of the cup holder for better grip) and place it on the plastic sleeve of the drink holder, next to the straps, so your arm is now raised above it. We’re looking into a solution that can be placed over the strap slots, so the product remains removable, but also ensures that if you leave it on your comfort isn’t sacrificed.
The next issue is one we did our homework on. Having the cup holder at the front is the most logical spot for it. It’s easy to reach, and lets you rest your arm naturally. At times this can get in the way, either rubbing against your leg, or in some powerchair cases, individuals may only have use of one side of their body. Controls being at the front of the armrest, it is impossible to use our product. When we were doing market research we decided to go to the front of the armrest versus to the side. (Number one complaint we heard: Side mount cup holders are cheap, and ram into doorways or furniture.) The side mount cup holders, or even pivoting cup holders, were a problem in that they broke easily. Powerchairs are large, and increasing the width even a little can cause accessories to bump into doorways. Pivoting cup holders are great in that you can change the position to meet your need, but the strain of going back and forth causes the joint to break or lose resistance over time which eliminates the support for beverages.
In closing, some issues we are working on, some we aren’t because unfortunately we were forced to pick some options over others. We wanted to make a cup holder that could be used for almost any occassion. It also had to last, and as I am still using the same cup holder for airplanes, stadiums, and my office chair, I think we accomplished that.