Twizy with a Type 2 Plug?

Just had an interesting chat with Renault Customer Services regarding the ever-marching switchover to Type 2 public recharge points (and the loss of BS1363 availability), meaning Twizy owners marginalised and relegated to home and ‘alternative’ charging sites - usually unlisted on the charge-your-car type websites.

It seems the Twizy designer was brought into the debate, and appreciates things have changed rapidly in recent months. The bad news is existing UK MK 1 Twizy’s are stuck with the existing BS1363 captive lead, and this will not change, there are no plans for a retro-fit Type 2 coiled lead or an official adaptor. A MK 2 version, however may move to the system used with the Zoe (female Type 2 socket). The user could then choose from a standard Type 2 lead or opt for a country specific lead - for example, in the UK this would be a BS1363 to Type 2. That’s the roadmap, but there was no suggestions as to what UK Twizy drivers could do n the meantime.

As I see it, there are a few of options - one aided by the current EST grant for the installation of a free home recharge point:

(A) Remove the existing BS1363 plug and replace it with a Type 2. This would still use the existing blue coiled cable and fit within the front charging bay for travelling. This would be relatively cheap, with £70 or so for the replacement plug.

(B) Remove the existing captive lead in its entirety, replacing this with a Type 2 socket, wired directly to the charger (in the same way the Zoe does). The downside here is cost, as you will have to purchase a chassis-mounted socket, plus two Type 2 plugs (one male, the other female) to create a charging lead. This could use the original coiled blue mains cable, minus the retaining elastic cord. However, this would need to be carried in the boot, not in the front compartment as there is not much space and the 2 x Type 2 plugs would be taking up the available space. Further, if you drove off without your link cable you would be stranded, but as Zoe users would be in the same boat, you’d need to be vigilant.

© Keep everything as-is. Create a link cable/adaptor - this would have a Type 2 plug you connect to a public recharging point leading to trailing BS1363 socket (which the Twizy would plug into as normal). The only addition would be some device to protect the plug/socket from being interfered with. I device I spotted from a German manufacturer fits the bill (see photo). It cannot be locked, but offers protection from the rain and conceals the electrics.

I’n going to try the © route first, and will advise how it is working in practice.

Option C sounds the most straightforward solution. Please keep us informed. Let us know where you get the bits and how much they are. Thanks.

Option ‘C’ with one of these Ebay item for less than £5 inc P&P. Same as Buzby but UK based. I found a new one in a market once for £1, never seen them again.

Buzby,
I would be really interested in what you have to do to make it all work safely? and at what cost?.From what I have been reading the the charging stations have to be fooled to start the charge in some way before they will work? is this true? and how can we safely fool them at little expense?.Best of luck

There are too many variations in vehicle manufacturer for there to be a single defining communications protocol to do what you suggest. They all appear to default to the lowest common denominator, which appears to be a very crude electrical resistance check in which the charger calculates the resistance across a number of pins and this tells the charger the maximum amperage to be used.

With a Type 2 plug, this is achieved by adding some resistors to the plug which bridge some pins not being used to carry the + & -VE.

I recall back in 2008 with my Vectrix, at an Electrobay post (which was a standard 13a UK socket) even this was problematic as both items were attempting to control the charge process, resulting in sporadic 1 minute charging cycles, until EB updated their firmware to disabled this and allow non-smart charging.

You’ll need more than that ideally – the circuit actually includes a diode and two resistors and a switch, if you want to prevent arcing, that is :wink:

I built a converter box when I had my Twizy, but now helping a friend make a portable one for her early Mitsubishi i-Miev – which despite having a J1772 connector on it is from before the Type 2 standard was ratified, and so it just a dumb socket…

Agreed - just keeping it simple! I was aware you developed your own solution, what did you do to prevent he Twizy’s plug being disconnected from the adaptor lead? Currently this is my only concern as returning to find some nutter may have interrupted charging whilst I wasn’t looking is proving a headache!

Hi sorry to drag up an old thread!

Im building my type 2 adapter and just wanted to ensure I was ordering the correct plug, is this correct? 16a male

http://evconnectors.com/Type-2-Electric-Vehicle-Charging-Cables-and-Sockets/Type-2-Connectors-16-amp/Type-2-16-amp-Plugs-and-Cables?product_id=114

Hi, Is anyone using a converter to use charging stations?

Thanks

I use this one (NL):
www.laadoplossingen.nl/Twizy
Much less expensive than most others, don’t use it much, nice build quality, never had any problem with it.

I don’t think that is going to be any good for me in the UK is it?

I don’t think so, but iirc you can order custom versions, too.

Here’s what I’m using:

http://evbitz.uk/EVBitz.uk/T2___UK_13A.html

Works fine in 95% of charging points but as with most of these cables the pins are hard wired such that the charger always thinks the car is charging. This is normally OK, but the type 2 is locked in with a solenoid while charging, so if the charging point doesn’t have a switch/button on it to stop the charge, you can never remove the cable.

I was thinking of doing an electrical mod adding a switch to the cable to get around this, but actually an easier way might be to just file away the plastic the solenoid locks in to…

I was going to go for one of these but eventually couldn’t see the point. You would only get say 10 miles in almost an hour of charge? I guess if you were desperate and you were actually near a charging station then yes but since I only do local 10 mile round trips I haven’t bothered (yet).

I’ll change my mind drastically of course if I find myself at a charge point location with less miles in the battery to get home than I need and wish I had a type 2 adapter on board.

Haha, yes indeed! I do carry it in the boot at all times, just in case…

I actually got mine because I was doing a few months work at a site 25 miles from home and only had access to type 2 there, so buying this was a no brainer for me.

Great, that’s the one I found before! Thanks.

I think it may be worth ordering a shorter one as I’m not sure why it would need to be 3m long! Though I guess you could run it into the car to keep rain off.

They sell a cable with the switch to release now, I guess that would be a no brainer! Though, would it just release when you remove the 13a plug?

Okay Okay - I give in. Just ordered one.

Sadly not, the 13a plug doesn’t interact with the ‘intelligence’ of the charging point.

So there is some sort of signal apart from the just not being a connection? A mate has ordered one, but went for the cheap non waterproof non button cable. I’m wondering if he should return it or maybe we can fit a button. I can’t work it out!

Yes exactly. If the car was made with a type 2, it would manipulate resistor values across a couple of pins in the type 2 plug, signalling to the charging point whether the car was ready to be charged, or more significantly, when the car has stopped charging, so the cable can be released. There’s also stuff to do with the car and the charging point negotiating the maximum charging current, but that doesn’t really matter for the Twizy.

If I was ordering now, I’d get the one with the button. It wasn’t an option when I got mine, and I did get the cable stuck once…