Genny Mods

I got asked if I would put together a page on advice, hacks and improvements I have made to my wheels
Stainless wheel-nuts
Genny is a well designed and built chair. I've not seen anything I would consider better however there are some small issues that can be addressed. I have even written to Genny Mobility making these suggestions

In October 2019 I will have had my wheels for 3 years and am approaching 4500 miles on the clock. Seeing as Genny Mobility has been in administration for most of that period I have survived OK and not had any serious issues apart from the EO24 error discussed HERE which was a Segway problem and resolved by Segway UK

So what goes wrong are small, silly and inconvenient issues. Most problems can be resolved with a simple toolkit which I have discussed in this POST but I can suggest some modifications that will reduce problems and improve your experience

Genny is a machine of two halves, the funky wheelchair part is cleverly built around a Segway base unit that on mine is a Segway i2. I understand that the forthcoming Genny release is to be built on the updated Segway i2 SE model. Most of the changes I have made are to the Genny side of things. My wheels are used a lot in quite harsh conditions. Most of my journeys involve crossing the beach and nothing is worse for machinery than salt water. Although I try and keep things dry  travelling over wet sand, I inevitably get splashes if not outright soakings. Sometimes in crossing from one side of the beach to the other I end up in several inches of water

Stainless Hardware

As a preventative measure I have replaced most of the easy to get to screws and nuts with stainless equivalents. These are loads better and keep things looking shiny new. Particularly vulnerable to rusting are the side cover screws underneath at the front and back. These sit in a small pocket corner under the Genny and get covered in whatever debris the tyres throw. These should definitely be replaced with stainless steel equivalents. I would need to check but I think most screws required are 4, 5 or maybe 6mm metric hex screws
All screws in this picture replaced with stainless steel equivalents 

In addition to the cover screws I have replace all hex screws holding the seat down as well as everything in the seat back support with stainless equivalents. When I change screws, I always clean everything and apply the replacements with LOCTITE (apart from the basic cover screws). This is essential as screws will come loose and can completely interrupt your plans. The wheel-nuts I have replaced with 8mm, metric thread, flanged, stainless steel nuts HERE

Another recommendation is to change the small allen grub screw that secures the bottom lean-steer locating lug. This is particularly vulnerable to coming loose when you least expect it. This I have also replaced with a stainless screw and stuck everything back with loctite. If this screw comes loose the locating lug falls out and your steering becomes floppy. It would be easy to loose the lug
Bottom of the lean-steer (upside down) with grub screw and location lug identified

I have replaced several of the Segway base unit hex screws with stainless equivalents. 4 long screws hold each of the 2 batteries in place that I recommend changing and there are 4 x M4x10mm Torx screws holding each mud guards in place that rust and can be replaced

Additional modifications I have made include inserting a simple switch under the seat that isolates Genny's 12volt battery. This is particularly helpful if you are flying Genny and need to demonstrate that the battery is isolated. Of course it only isolates the 12v side of things and not the Segway itself but it goes a long way to convincing airport ground staff that Genny is safe to fly. I would not attempt to travel without it now

Added switch to isolate Genny's 12 volt battery set under seat
I have added some additional rear lighting to my Genny, On most occasions I am travelling with a rucksack slung over the Genny backrest. This is great for carrying your essentials but completely blocks your very stylish built-in Genny lights. Law in the UK and Jersey requires both lights and indicators be fitted to certain classes of mobility vehicles. I have fitted round LED indicator/tail light units to the black rear lower panel. The rear lights are simply wired into the existing back light but the indicators are a more complicated wireless addition that I can detail in an additional post if anyone is interested?

Half tail-light half indicator - visible even with a bag slung on the backrest
I have been planning on having the aluminium Segway casings and gearboxes sand-blasted and a protective coating applied. This would only be decorative as when aluminium oxidises it creates its own protective layer however it improves the appearance. The hold up on this is that it would require my chair to be out of action for several days whilst the job is done and I would miss the use of it. I will keep my eyes open for second hand covers on ebay that I could work on


Flat tyres

I have had ongoing issues with flat tyres on my wheels. I destroyed a tyre in Antigua that although repaired, resulted in an irreparably damaged tyre (see post HERE) I replaced both tyres with similar tyres (HERE) and have also replaced both rims but have been plagued with slow leaks

When Genny has tyres that are low on pressure you notice a sluggish ride, it will not feel right. you can travel for a short distance on even a completely flat tyre if necessary to get you to a garage, but for a better solution I have recently added a discreetly mounted pump that will always be there when required

The pump is a small aluminium bicycle pump that comes with a mount. It is a lovely piece of engineering that can pump up to 160 psi so should be able to handle Genny's 14 psi with ease. The pump came from Amazon at a very modest price (HERE). I decided to mount the pump on the seat base frame which required the drilling of two 5mm holes. Mounted with 5mm stainless nuts and bolts the pump is out of the way, looks fine and is always ready when needed.  Better still is to get a set of Segway inner tubes. Changing to a tubed tyre means I never have to think about the tyre pressure again. I think the tyres fitted at such low pressure and fitted on such a wide rim are liable to loose compression. I toyed with fitting a wider tyre but apparently they will rub against the Segway mud guards which are a very snug fit.

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