Repairs: Charging cable

Whilst I was dismantling the AK Rail for my recent yearly battery pack balancing, I noticed a grave problem that needed attention immediately. The main cable via which the TWIKE is charged 98% of the time showed grave signs of wear. I really don’t understand how this could have happened – I’m just very glad that I caught it in time. It puzzles me that both ends were without insulation, not only the cable but also close to the crimped connector. The phase cable was partially burnt… but not where the cable was already weakened? Queue the music and lets […]

Repairs: Wood console restoration

It’s time to tackle a new project: last year’s display restoration entry hinted at me wanting to start the process of restoring the main console and other wooden parts in my TWIKE. Using wood as the main working material for all the visible console and control surfaces and casings seems like a good and sustainable idea. 23 years later, the wood is showing the strains of being exposed to bitter Swiss winters at -26°C and scorching heat. The wood is splintering and breaking and all my attempts to keep the wood clean and in oread about the repairne piece were […]

Repairs: Weird Lights-Out

A few days ago, TWIKE 560 started acting weridly – on the center console the left three LED’s turned on if the main lights were switched on, the right-hand blinker would work, the left hand one not. However, if the lights were off, then both blinkers would work fine. Every seasoned TWIKE pilot knows that this typically means one or more of the 12V fuses are blown and the center console typically – and oddly helpfully – shows which side of the TWIKE is affected by lighting the corresponding LEDs on the front panel. Looking at the TWIKE, this is […]

Display Restoration

TW560’s display has become very dull after 25 years and reading data is difficult in direct sunlight. It has started to become a real problem. Not only for everyday reading but also for me during my trips I have been writing about on my blog – a recent one from my trip to Portugal below. What can be done? A quick Google search later, it turns out that buffing plastics can be exceedingly easy (toothpaste, cloth) but can also yield the exact opposite of what one would like to achieve – more scratches – or very difficult, including lots of […]

How to Bleed TWIKE Brakes

During TDP2021 I noticed that the front friction brake was not working correctly – only the rear brakes…and those were also really bad. Since there is near to no information about TWIKE brakes and the different variants, I thought it would make sense to write about this vital part of the vehicle in a short entry. For context, there are three types of friction-based brake setups in TWIKEs (which typically get used very little): Split brake systems – legs brake back tyres via a back pedal setup, left hand brakes front wheel Very limited ability to brake with the front […]

TDE2019 – Uh-Oh, Huston do we have a problem?

Returning to check on the charge after our drive-free day in Valencia (a town well worth a visit!) everything was OK regarding the charge… but there was another issue manifesting itself on the floor of the garage I was parking in: A puddle of oil! Hmm. Even if a TWIKE only has around 150 ml oil for its gearbox (a rather simple fixed-ratio affair which, nevertheless, can require servicing), losing said oil is never a good thing!   Looking under the TWIKE just before the battery compartment there is a huge amount of gunk – yuk!   As it’s quite […]

TW560 interior: new seats

As one of the last parts of my full restoration of TW560 after an accident completely destroyed the vehicle and needed extensive re-building from the ground I thought it to be fitting to go all the way and spend some money on a new interior. This isn’t a decision based purely on luxury – the accident destroyed one of my seats and reduced my TWIKE to effectively a one seater. 10 years ago, I already had new seats made – the process was utterly satisfying: chose every aspect of your seat, from padding to colours and top materials. I’m a […]

Repairs: Easy and cheap re-attaching of canopy snap fasteners

Have you had canopy fasteners coming off the frame and staying in the canopy thus creating a not-so watertight problem? Don’t despair – I have a handy and easy way to fix it.   Just buy M4x15 screws, helical spring washers, M4 nyloc nuts and a 4.1 metal drill. Carefully place the drill in the center of the existing broken-off rivet put your finger behind the metal band on the rivet and slowly start drilling. Within a second, you will notice that your rivet has come loose, as not much metal has been keeping in place anymore.   The hole […]

TW560 Rebuild…completed.

After my first km and various smaller trips resulting in extensive testing of TW560’s rebuild, it was time to go to Ksenotek for one last rebuild session for some last finishing touches. A new wooden battery bay cover – the last one was just plain wood. This time over I’m getting a beautifully lacquered one. Looks very, very posh. Finally my battery bay is closed and there aren’t unprotected cables carrying >400V just mere centimetres behind me and I don’t have to warn anyone getting into my TWIKE not to touch anything 🙂 Another very important final touch is adding […]

Repairs: DIY TWIKE drivetrain overhaul (not for the faint of heart!)

Part of the TWIKE community reaching out to me after destroying TW560 was me being offered to drive TW600. Caroline and I have known each other for a few years now and I’ve been her primary gateway for most questions around her vehicle as we both live in the same (small) village. During the handover of her TWIKE she asked me: when you’re driving my TWIKE, can you please tell me if there is something you think will fail soon? Are there any sounds you think should worry me? As I’ve said many times – every TWIKE is different .. […]