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Repairs: No recuperation, take II

One of the most important features of a TWIKE is it’s ability to charge its batteries when breaking instead of wasting the kinetic energy on heating brake-pads.

This is why TW560 proudly sports the bumper sticker below… to tickle ICE-driver’s brains πŸ™‚

i break for regenerative energy!

i break for regenerative energy!

TW560’s recuperation has been patchy lately. When pressing the recuperation-button the inverter now usually nothing happens – a major source of frustration for a TWIKE pilot πŸ™‚

Before we just either call our TWIKE mechanic to schedule a repair or do it ourselves, it is always a good idea to see what the exact problem might be. In our case I just want to know if it an easy replacement of a faulty button or something serious.

This is – again – one of the moments when I really like the thinking of the TWIKE engineers 25+ years ago: Keep it simple, hackable and repairable – within the depths of the controller, there are a few screens with which debugging GPIO port values becomes super-simple. See for yourself:

GPIO testing

GPIO testing

 

It’s the button! πŸ™‚

Although this hasn’t been the first time for TW560 to have this problem – 100k+ button depressions are a lot for any quality of switch – this time I’ve decided to get the switch and replace it myself.

Let’s start. First we have to get the button assembly out of the yoke. This doesn’t need much force. If you cannot get the assembly out, use a crochet hook.

Old control switches

Old control switches

With a soldering iron, detach existing cables and remove the assembly.

In need of replacement

In need of replacement

Either remove the buttons from the PCB and replace them with new ones, or do what I did: get an original TWIKE AG assembly.

Original TWIKE AG replacement parts

Original TWIKE AG replacement parts

Solder the cables back to where they were before (don’t forget to take a picture before removing them). Check the connection using the same GPIO-checker and then use your trusted hot glue gun to apply some glue to the assembly and stick it back into place. Make sure you use flexible glue.

And with this, you’re set for many happy TWIKE kilometres in the future!