Showing posts with label IWL Troll. Show all posts
Showing posts with label IWL Troll. Show all posts

Wednesday, May 27, 2020

1964 IWL Troll TR1 brochure

Whenever I tell people my scooter is called a Troll they look at me like I'm a little crazy. But no, it is called a Troll. It's actually a very Germanic contraction of two words - Touring Roller, or as we would say in English, touring scooter. T-Roll 1. All very simple.

Monday, April 27, 2020

1963 IWL Troll review

As briefly reported in Issue 1/1963, the first new "Troll l" scooter rolled off the assembly line of VEB Industriewerk Ludwigsfelde in January. The scooter "Berlin", which is an integral part of our street scene, has been replaced by a new development which offers considerably more in terms of driving comfort, driving performance, and driving safety. The starting point for this new development were demands for improved suspension, seating position and easier maintenance and repair options. In-depth studies of the city scooter "Berlin" showed that further development of the design was exhausted and a completely new development was necessary. To ensure trouble-free use, the greatest possible degree of standardization with the motorcycles of the VEB motorcycle factory in Zschopau was decisive for the technical design.

1. Frame
For the designers in Ludwigsfelde, guiding the choice of the chassis was the good experience that MZ has with the full-swing chassis of the large ES types (in addition, small types like the ES 125/150, were under development in Zschopau). This resulted in the design with front and rear long swing arms and the utilization of the shock absorbers of the ES 125/150 for the scooter "Troll l". In addition to the exceptional driving characteristics, this also has an economic benefit for our economy, which confirms the correctness of standardised development. With the spring travel of 100 mm for the rear wheel and 130 mm for the front wheel, the "Troll l" is at the top of all known vehicles of the same type.

The backbone of the new vehicle is a welded sheet metal frame that is manufactured in-house using our own welding systems. The basic profiles are welded in one operation by a modern multi-spot welding machine. This results in an absolute guarantee of flawless processing quality and economical production times. The front carrier, which comes from the MZ ES 125/150, and the rear body carrier are made of cast iron. The rear body support is also designed as a fender. The extremely torsion-resistant frame together with the hydraulically damped long swing arm suspension provide excellent driving characteristics of the "Troll l".

2. Motor
The MZ motors ES 125, ES 150 and RM 150/1 represent the modular series of the new standard motor. The RM 150/1 scooter motor is the only one equipped with a cooling fan. The performance of these motors could be further improved with further systematic development. Among other things, the connecting rod was improved with the use of a cage-guided needle bearing. The main bearings are externally lubricated by the gear oil from the clutch chamber, with the crankshaft seals now being located directly on the lifting discs. The alternator side is closed with a seal on the outside. The compensating holes required in the full lifting disks were sealed with plastic plugs to increase the pre-compression. To improve the thermal stability, light alloy composite cast cylinders with cast-in grey cast iron bushings are used, which are manufactured according to the Alfer method. The excellent heat dissipation for this type of cylinder enables operation with 0.03 mm piston clearance.

With the use of VK "Extra" (OZ 78) and the improved shape of the combustion chamber, the compression ratio could be increased to 9: 1, so that the RM 150/1 scooter engine now delivers 9.5 HP at a speed of 5500 rpm. Maximum torque is 1.25 kpm at 4000 rpm (Fig. 2). Intake and exhaust silencers have been carefully matched to the engine; the exhaust silencer especially has been completely redeveloped. The normal driving state diagram in Fig. 3 shows the gradation. The ratio of the primary chain drive has been changed to relieve the multi-disc clutch running in an oil bath. A new material is used for the primary chain, which guarantees a mileage of 25,000 km.

The housing cover shape was changed on the alternator side. Now you can get to the alternator by loosening just one screw and removing a small additional cover, which is particularly pleasant for making small adjustments on the way. The alternator is now vented through a plastic hose directly into the intake silencer.

3. Shape design and details
The rear hood has a modern three-part design, with quick-release, removable large side panels ensuring effortless access to the drive unit. Pictures 4 and 5 show the rear part with the side shells removed. The leg mudguards are high and wide and provide optimal dirt and weather protection. A comfortable, wide seat enables every driver to find the right seat position. It can be folded up to gives access to the control for the fuel tap. The fuel tank cap is also located under the seat. Other important details are the folding side stand and the exhaust completely hidden beneath the running board. Injuries from the hot exhaust, such as have previously occurred with the "Berlin" are therefore completely avoided.

There is a lockable box immediately behind the leg guards (Fig. 6). It offers plenty of space for storing tools, spares, etc. In addition, the anti-theft device, which is activated by a push button, is placed in this box.

The scooter "Troll 1" has become slightly higher than its predecessor "Berlin". This resulted from the large spring travel and the need to ensure sufficient ground clearance. However, the seating position is still within normal limits compared to other vehicles of the same type, although the slightly higher seating position is pleasant when driving. It gives the driver the impression of sitting on a motorcycle and gives extremely good contact with the road.

The accessories that are available commercially, such as luggage racks, unicycle trailers, etc., add to the vehicle’s versatility. The spare wheel is no longer supplied as standard but can be purchased as required. This fulfills numerous customer requests that reject the standard spare wheel as unnecessary ballast. In addition, it was found in tests of the frequency of breakdowns that a tyre puncture only occurred on average every 20,000 km, so that the constant carrying of a spare wheel did not appear to be necessary. An air pump is supplied as standard and is located in the upper part of the rear hood. Cautious drivers still have the option of taking their spare wheel with them.

The "Troll " is the first motor scooter with the asymmetrical dipped beam as standard! With a power consumption of 45/40 W and a light exit diameter of 136 mm, illuminating conditions of the road surface which were previously unknown in two-wheelers. Furthermore, this scooter has a flashing light and high-performance handlebar turn signals (15 W) as standard. A brake, tail and license plate light with a 95 mm light emission completes the electrical equipment.

4. Mileage
The powerful engine gives the vehicle a top speed that is still unknown in this class. With a max = 90 km/h, the character of the “Troll” touring scooter is a quick and easy way to cover long distances.

The equally high torque ensures fast driving and fast acceleration. Conditions that bring the well-known great advantages to a two-wheeled vehicle in road traffic. 60 km/h are achieved from a standing start after 11.6 seconds and 80 km/h after 23 seconds. The fuel consumption is shown in Figure 7. Fuel consumption for regular road use has a favorable value of 3 to 4.41 / 100 km. The extremely rigorous testing of the "Troll 1", which was carried out in a non-stop three-shift operation in 1961 and 1962, demonstrates the maturity of this design and the quality of the product of vehicles produced. Finally, we explain how the name "Troll" came about. This name is the summary of the first letters from the word combination "Touring-roller-Ludwigsfelde". It is to be hoped that the "Troll" confirms itself as the good spirit of its owners.

This is my English translation of the 1963 KFZ review of the IWL Troll. The original can be found here:

Come with me for a quick walk around my 1964 IWL Troll scooter.

For more information about these interesting East German scooters and the restoration story of my example, check out the blog posts here:

Sunday, November 19, 2017

Remembrance Day Scooter Ride 2017

It's been several years since I've taken the Troll out for a run, but on 12 November there was a scooter run in Fremantle. The 12th was my birthday and that alone was good enough reason to pull the beast out of the shed and hit the road.

Despite not having been ridden in two years the Troll fired straight up and needed little more than a quick lube here and there.

The Remembrance Run was organized by South Side Scooters and they did a great job of spreading the word across the scootering community. The event even got a write up in the local paper.

Several SIVA members and fellow travelers attended. Ron De Pannone on his Lambretta Li, Andy Montgomery on this Vespa 150, James Long on his Honda Spacey, Tony Wong on his Lambretta LD and Greg Eastwood on his Heinkel Tourist.

Tony's lovely Lambretta LD. The oldest scooter on the run.

The Troll - solid and reliable like a Soviet tractor and just as pretty.

Greg's Heinkel Tourist is a thing of beauty

While James' Honda Spacey is.... 'uniquely styled.' But it is way more powerful and reliable than the Vespas and Lambrettas.

124 scooters attended - a fantastic turnout!

The route took us along the coast to Cottesloe, then through Mosman Park and back to Fremantle.

Getting started ready for wind resistance

One of Tony Wong's cool photos. All the stylish photos in this post are his.

Great photos from Mark Nagle.

See link to his Facebook page

The Troll ran extremely well, although I was at the back of the pack most of the run. Quite a few Lambrettas stalled along the way (probably weighed down with all the surplus mirrors). Old fuel was the common complaint.

Andy and James

Greg on the Heinkel. Gotta love the helmet.

I made it all the way back to Fremantle without incident but Greg's Heinkel stopped running about 100 metres from the end point while we were waiting for the stragglers to catch up. I stuck around for a while to help him out before I headed home. It was a great start to my birthday.

Greg pushes the Heinkel the last 100 metres. Lesson for the future - never switch off your engine!

Tony W as 'tail gun Charlie'
A brief video of the start.

Monday, February 27, 2012

Troll Auspuff

The Troll was off the road for most of last year due to problems with its kick-start, steering and gearbox. The guys at The Vespa Shop got her fixed up smartly once I'd finally tracked down the replacement parts. I must admit that it felt strange riding her after so long. I found myself struggling again to remember which side was the gear change and which was the brake! One thing I did notice though was the engine was very spluttering and smoky.

A major part of the problem is the quality of the reproduction exhaust (May 2009 - Reproduction exhausts are available from a number of suppliers such as and other vendors on German ebay. The original exhaust was made from a long extruded tube that wrapped around itself much like a paper clip. All the seams in the original exhaust were welded making it very robust. The reproduction exhaust however was constructed of several interlocking pieces, making it much easier to manufacture but requiring a larger number of joins. None of these joins are sealed.

Shortly after I began running in the Troll in May 2009 the exhaust began to leak. The leaks were small though and a smear of sealant was enough to plug them. But over time it seems the exhaust has warped under pressure and heat and basically every seam was spewing gas, coating the sides and underside of the scooter in black soot. When parked, black oil residue dripped from a dozen places.

So it was time for a backyard repair. The exhaust was surprisingly easy to remove. A single bolt holds the exhaust to the footplate and a compression ring joins it to the exhaust pipe. It was positively filthy. The component parts were easily dismantled by removing two bolts at the front of the exhaust and all were given a good wash in degreaser.

The chrome came up well and all the soot was removed. After drying off I reassembled the parts. They are generally badly fitting and required a very liberal smearing of exhaust sealant around every join.

It was a bit of an effort to get the exhaust back on - these things are always easier to remove than reinstall - but I was pleased with the result. Although it hasn't completely solved the problem - there are still a few minor leaks - it's working much better than before as most of the exhaust is going out the back end, as it should. Next weekend I'll give her another good run and see if this has improved the performance. Maintaining pressure in the exhaust is critical to obtaining the correct compression in the engine and a leaky exhaust will substantially degrade the performance of a two-stroke engine.

One more point. I normally use Silkolene synthetic two-stroke scooter oil in all my machines. I find it works well and is low smoke. On a whim however I tried Valvoline racing two-stroke oil, which sold itself as a performance product with low smoke. In my experience to date it hasn't quite lived up to that claim. Maybe it is a better product and I've just used too much but the Troll now looks and smells like an archetypical East German machine, trailing an enormous cloud of blue smoke behind it. I'll give it another crack when I get to the bottom of this tank but if it doesn't improve I'll be saving the Valvoline only for East German car rally's!

Update 4 March 2012

I took the Troll out for a series of runs to test the resealed exhaust. I was pleased to note that the repairs provided a definite improvement on performance. The engine was a lot quieter and much more grunt. It was easy to run her up to 70 kph and I could feel that she had more in her. I should also mention I cleaned the carburetter.

That said though, the exhaust still leaks, but not as badly as before. Of course the leak is on the seam at the top of the exhaust where it bolts onto the floor plate so I'll need to remove it and reseal it again.

Since cleaning up the exhaust last week it's been easier to find where it is still leaking. If it can't be sealed up I might consider welding all the joins to solve the problem for good.

Update 10 March 2012

This weekend I removed the exhaust and re-examined the seals. The seal under the mounting bolt had completely opened up again.

I filled the exhaust with water to precisely locate the leak. The still shot doesn't quite do it justice but water pretty much gushed out of the seam on the left hand pipe.

The leak was far to serious for a smear of sealant so it was out with some exhaust tape. It's an unattractive but last ditch solution. After reinstalling the exhaust I took the Troll for a long ride to cure the silicone tape. I'm afraid I'm not convinced it has actually worked as there is already a long run of black oil along the edges of the tape. I think it's time to look for a replacement.

Thursday, January 12, 2012

Happy New Year 2012

Merry Christmas! Happy New Year! Welcome to 2012. I'm looking forward to an exciting year ahead. The long awaited DKW is due to arrive at the beginning of February. Importing the car has been a long and tiring exercise - not least for the seller - but its almost over now. I'll write up a summary of the process and its challenges shortly.

Outside the iconic Dingo Flour building in Leighton.

After several weeks of unseasonably wet weather the Christmas and New Year were days of glorious sunshine so I tuned up the Ariel and took her out on a couple of long runs to Fremantle, up the coast and around the river. It was a real pleasure to be out on the road and the bike ran like dream. Whenever I stop when I'm out with the bike people always come over for a chat, even on a run up to the local shops. Of course I enjoy the chat. It's always a pleasure to share the interest with people.

I often ride past the port where the roll-on roll-off ships berth. At Christmas the 'Hoegh Africa' Autoliner was in port delivering a load of heavy industrial vehicles and what looked like a fleet of Hyundai's. I stopped to watch the ship leaving port and wondered whether the Deek would be hitching a ride shortly.

The following week I got my answer - No. The Deek was booked on the MV Tijuca, currently on route from Southhampton, UK to Port Elizabeth, South Africa with a load of luxury cars aboard. After Port Elizabeth she will stop in Durban on the 20th of January where she picks up the Deek and heads across the Indian Ocean.

Here is a handy link that actually gives the GPS co-ordinates of the ship.
On 16th of January she was off Cape Town, South Africa.

As I rode along I noticed this Ford Thunderbird parked dockside. I wonder if its a recent arrival or is awaiting shipping? I'll have to keep an eye out for it at Big Al's Poker Run this February.

"And during the meanwhilst..."*
Sadly the Ariel is the only one of my machines fit for the road. The Troll broke down again shortly after I got it back on the road. Firstly the steering started to become unstable. At only 70 kilometres per hour the front end shuddered disturbingly, but there did not appear to be anything obviously wrong. I was about to take the Troll back to the Vespa Shop for a thorough going over but then the kickstarter broke and she wasn't going anywhere.

It took a couple of months to get the Troll dropped off at the Vespa Shop and then, after diagnosis (sheered teeth on the kickstarter damaging the gearbox), it's taken almost two months to source the replacement parts. I'm hoping the Troll will be back on the road by February as I want to drop the Ariel off for a bit of tender love and care.

The Vespa has been off the road even longer than the Troll. It is now most definitely displaying all the signs of a poor quality Asian restoration. Almost all of the 'chrome' has degraded to rust - despite the Vespa having hardly been on the road and always stored under cover in my garage. Poor quality shabby reproduction rubbish!

More seriously the rear wheel is dangerously loose making the scooter unroadworthy. According to Ivo at the Vespa Shop this is a common problem in Balinese and Vietnamese restorations and is due to the use of poor quality materials that are not designed to bear the kind of forces associated with road use. I found this out to my surprise when I replaced the Vespa's exhaust back in 2009. Instead of correct sized automotive parts, the exhaust was held on by roofing bolts which where the wrong size and packed out with washers. Even the engine and rear axle is mounted using a jumble of household odds and ends. They might last for a while - two years in my case - but they always fail and if it fails on the road the results can be catastrophic. Ivo has seen this dozens of times and it infuriates him as it only takes a small effort to use the right quality parts to avoid this issue in the first place.

If you own a Balinese or Vietnamese Vespa I can only suggest you get it properly checked over.
For a great insight into dodgy Asian Vespa restorations go no further than Brett's blog - The 71 Sprint V and Me -

This is not to say the Vespa is a write-off. It still runs pretty well and remains a handsome machine. When I get the time and money I'll have her fixed up so that it's road safe and then I'll sell it. I really don't have the space or time to ride it anymore.

And finally there's the Heinkel, which remains in stacked in a pile of boxes at the Vespa Shop. For a variety of reasons neither the guys nor myself have attempted to tackle the restoration. I think I'll bring it all home again shortly and put the project on ice for the time being. With the DKW due in shortly I expect I'll be busy over the coming months. As crazy as it may sound, the cost of the DKW including shipping, is probably on par with what it would end up costing me to complete the Heinkel restoration!