I have no use of my legs and therefore need hand controls for operating my Polaris Ranger UTV. Do you know who sells hand control conversion kits or could make the necessary modifications?

  1. The following Web site compares two designs of hand controls that utilize different hand motions to apply the brakes and accelerator—go to www.accesssolutions-ky.com, and click on "Vehicle Hand Controls." You will need to decide which technique of operation you prefer.
  2. Here are four companies that offer ready-made hand controls for automobiles that can usually be adapted for UTVs:

    Howell Industries, Ltd. (Upper Kingsclear, NB, Canada). Contact—by phone @ 888-370-5050 or via the Web @ www.suregrip-hvl.com; click on "Recreation" to see photos of UTVs with hand controls.

    TNT Portable, Inc. (Chattanooga, TN). Contact—by phone @ 866-423-2402 or via the Web @ www.tntportable.com. They advertise adaptability for ATVs.

    AllegroMedical.com (Mesa, AZ). Contact—by phone @ 800-861-3211 or via the Web @ www.allegromedical.com, then in the search window type "Hand Controls."

    Access Solutions, Inc. (Lexington, KY). Contact—by phone @ 877-426-3482 or via the Web @ www.accesssolutions.com and click on "Vehicle Hand Controls."

  3. You might also contact Life Essentials, LLC, Brookston, IN, (765-742-6707 or www.lifeessentialsweb.com), John Hancock of Lexington, KY (859-227-7099), and Northend Mobility of Welland, Ontario (905-735-5552 or www.northend-mobility.com) which design and fabricate vehicle and equipment custom modifications for persons with disabilities.
  4. Three other sources of information on homemade hand control ideas and designs are:

    University of Wisconsin Extension AgrAbility Web site—go to fyi.uwex.edu/agrability and click on "Assistive Technology Resources," then on "Plans for Equipment Modifications."

    • Toolbox, which is a CD-ROM and on-line catalog of commercial and farmer-modified equipment and assistive devices for farming with a disability. It contains fact sheets on control modifications for farm equipment (including utility vehicles). Your county Extension office and local high school agricultural education teacher should have a copy of the CD to view (perhaps borrow), or you can access it (in pdf format) at www.bngtoolbox.info.

    • American Society of Agricultural and Biological Engineering, A hand control can be made by attaching a bent rod by means of a bracket to the foot pedal for the clutch, brake, or hydrostat transmission. The rod can be clamped onto the foot pedal and bent to come up to a convenient location for hand operation. An article with color pictures and evaluation of different designs of bent-rod hand controls can be found at asae.frymulti.com by typing "Evaluation of Mechanical Tractor Pedal Extensions" in the "with-the-exact-phrase" search window, click "GO" then "download pdf."