I stumbled across a rather good 5yo titanium 'chair for sale on ebay at the end of last week, with about £1000 worth of extras on board, say £3000 to buy at current prices. I wasn't looking with intent to buy there and then, more idle interest while otherwise bored, but that was a good enough chair, and close enough to the configuration I've been planning on that I would have been stupid not to bid. So I checked it out with kaberett
and we agreed it would definitely suit me as an interim main 'chair/long term spare,
I worked out what I was willing to spend, put a bid in, and was the leading bidder right up until about 90 seconds before the auction closed, when someone pipped me. I upped my bid a bit, but they instantly outbid me, and I wasn't about to get into a bidding war with someone's clearly pre-emptive strike, so I let it go. Someone got a bargain for £560. :(
But that did clarify in my mind that I want a rigid-framed chair sooner rather than later, my current non-rigid chair is almost a pastiche of what a good chair should be (I've taken to referring to it as 'the clown chair', that's it in the icon). So I was poking at several different auctions over the weekend, trying to find a chair that met my requirements for a reasonable price. Nothing quite fit, too small a seat, too far away to collect, and so on. Then I checked again Monday morning, as I couldn't sleep, meaning to have another look at the Quickie GPV with the too small seat and figure out if there was a way around that/if I could tolerate it, and found two new GPVs had gone up last night, both with Buy Now prices (and blue frames, not purple, definite plus - c.f. my accidentally purple laptop). I checked a couple of details with the vendor, the front castor set-up is a little weird in the pictures, but that's reconfigurable, and the tyres were caked with mud, making it impossible to tell the state of the tread, but the answers were positive (nearly new tyres), and so I'm now the owner of a GPV.
It's not as good a chair as the one I first bid on, aluminium rather than titanium frame, and without all the extras, but it is about £1400 worth of rigid chair for £250 including postage, which is less than I'd have to pay for one of the mass-market non-rigids. And so now I'm waiting for delivery (probably for the end of the week, depending on when the vendor gets it couriered), and of course the damned brain weasels are circling, throwing out scenarios for everything that could go wrong. But hopefully by the end of the week I'll have a chair that will do a reasonable job of meeting my needs until I can persuade Wheelchair Services to give me the precise configuration I need, or at least give me enough of an assessment I'm confident enough to go pay full price to buy it privately.