by Access Systems
Does anyone know if there is such a beast as a hand control for a clutch? My left knee has cr*pped out on me and I have been thinking of ways to get around converting my beloved bus from a manual shift...
What is probably the slickest set of controls is the "Drive-Matic" automatic clutch system. This works very much like the bug's auto stick shift. It has a microswitch on the gearshift lever and engages the clutch when you touch it.
For more information contact:
570 Hance Rd
Binghampton NY 13903
(607) 669 4822
The hand controls I have on my van, and the ones I like (so much so that I am now a distributor) are the Handicaps Inc. These controls will operate up to two functions gas/brake, gas/clutch, etc and work well on an automatic van.
For more info contact me or:
4335 So Santa Fe Drive
Englewood CO 80110
Other controls manufacturers are:
51 Kero Rd
Carlstadt NJ 07072
Automobility Mfg Corp
128 6th Ave E.
Regina SK S4N 5A5
Drive Master Co (this company will do custom work too)
9 Spielman Rd
Fairfield NJ 07004
16141 Runnymede St
Van Nuys CA 91406
PHC III / Sportaid
78 Bay Creek Rd
Loganville GO 30052
11448 N Main St ext
Glen Rock PA 17327
888 VANS 4 YOU
Wells Engberg Co (one of the oldest)
P.O. Box 6388
Rockford IL 61125
Most all of these can be bought direct and anyone who can take out a type II engine certainly should be able to get one of these controls installed and adjusted correctly. Just remember if you mess up it will come back to get you at the most inconvenient or dangerous time.
Also, it seems that possibly the Automatic Stick Shift from a Type I might also be adapted for use on the Type II.
When driving there are several "tricks" to make it safer and easier, and I recommend a special driver's education program. For those who think they can do it themselves start in a BIG empty lot and practice until it becomes second nature to you. It is not hard merely different.
Other adaptive aides are also avaliable, including lifts, power steering add ons ($$$$), and even eye tracking turn signal actuators. If you have the desire it is possible to drive.
The Italian Company is called:
Guidosimplex S.N.C. Di Giancarlo Venturini e.c.
Via Del Podere S. Giusto, n. 29
www.guidosimplex,it/us/homeuk.htm (English version)
The Guidosimplex and Drivematic systems use servos and microswitches. However Benificial Designs makes one that operates all three pedals with a cumbersome arrangement to one control (you still need to hold the steering wheel and shift?). I know the owner of Benificial Designs and he makes some really durable and well made equipment, YMMV.
Benifical Designs Inc
5858 Empire Grade
Santa Cruz CA 95060-9603
Also buried somewhere in my read mail is a message from a guy who has built
his own hand-operated clutch for a Type 181 (Thing). It is very similar to
the Guidosimplex though.