Sunday, June 15, 2014

Father's Day and the Think Wiper

Well I have to apologize for a long hiatus.

For me it's been a winter of electric discontent. While the DC Auto show with EVADC gang and MDVolt people was great - winter in general was not nice. For the first time the intersection of the College Park commute 53-54 miles, Leaf battery mileage (33-36K), and single digit temperatures took me down to a round trip with almost no reserve always in single digits and LBW (Low Battery Warning). For me not comfortable. Now I commute at low beltway speeds (65 vs normal 75 in low temp) and preheat. The 26-27 miles one way are cold by the time I get to the garage although I have seat heat. The return is not preheated so worse.

It just was not exciting to write about. When normally range is about 75 miles, which certainly could be better, dropping to the fifties does not bring out my inner writer.

Still spring is cheering me. At 37+K my 12 bars on the Leaf are hanging on and range has returned. Kevin is a fully licensed driver doing well on his test and enjoying driving the Th!nk City on his own.

The Think also gave us a little father's day treat.  Kevin had asked for some help as his windshield wiper would slip and misalign - sort of crashing over to one side and not cleaning rain off. Asking on the list some folks noted it was a attachment or tightening problem and while no one had specifics it sounded simple. Eurostar has been fine with warranty work but it is a bit of production getting there as the Th!nk needs to fully recharge after the one way trip for hours.

I'm just enough to be dangerous with a socket set - no mechanic for sure but I thought we'd take a look. After various keystone cops moments finding sockets, taking off the two bolts holding the hood, and misplacing one for a bit we could see better the underlying mechanism of the wiper attachment.

Here's Kevin with the hood off:

So watching the wiper work when lifted off the windshield, the linkage appeared attached. It was just slipping when the work of moving across the windshield was added. Stopping the wiper I ran my hand under the linkage which felt more like a heavy rivet going up to the cylinder turning the wipers. No nut or screw head I could feel to tighten underneath.

Then it turned out to be way simple.

The top of the wiper where the pivot point attaches looks like smooth black metal. However it levers up with just finger pressure to reveal tensioning nuts (13mm).

How cool - the hood didn't have to open much less come off although it helped to see below. A quarter turn snugged the top axis bolt - the bottom armature bolt was already snug. I could have tensioned more but Kevin knows where it is if it loosens up and I didn't want to over tension. Flip the covers down on the wiper blade arm and done.

Here BTW is an under hood shot while we had it off.

So there you have it!  If your Think wiper slips a simple possible fix. Kevin is happy and Dad Dave has a Father's Day faux mechanic win - even if it was real simple. Got to love that. Hmm this might help my electric writing mojo - we'll have to see.  I'll leave you with another picture of the Think:

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