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Madaus Twintrax Power Plus by Christoph Madaus

Madness on two wheels with two Harley twins

The designer Christoph Madaus worked on the Twintrax Power Plus for twelve years. Without knowing what we’re going to do with his monster, he lets us ride the motorcycle with two Harley twins mounted one behind the other. Themselves to blame.

Madaus Twintrax Power Plus

R.uckblende: In May 2007 the Cologne designer Christoph Madaus stood in front of a group of select guests and activated the electric starter for the first time after twelve years of construction. In fact, there are actually two electric starters that are supposed to scare his monster out of paralysis. Because there are also two motors that send their power to a flange-mounted gearbox: Christoph has squeezed two Harley Evolution motors one behind the other into a chassis. A chassis that he designed and manufactured himself. Like almost everything on this bike. In twelve long years.

Madaus Twintrax Power Plus by Christoph Madaus

Madness on two wheels with two Harley twins

"A motorcycle cannot have enough engine"

“A motorcycle can’t have enough engine,” he says. He gives his monster with what feels like a five-meter wheelbase and 2.8 liter displacement the name Twintrax Power Plus and pushes it to the custom bike trade fairs around the world. It wins countless prizes, makes it onto the front pages of various magazines around the globe and amazes the professional world. Because Madaus is an interior designer, a man who generally deals with the design of rooms. Satisfied with himself, the world and the success of the Twintrax, he parks his creation from now on in his office.

Caress it gently before going to bed, meticulously waving away every speck of dust and feasting on the sight. Til today. Call in Cologne. “Tell me Christoph, in our series“ ‘Abgefahren! ‘” We deal with totally crazy motorcycles and also ride them. Can we have the Twintrax? ”Silence on the other end. “Uh, drive? Drive properly? ” I can already guess that he is now saying it won’t work. Unique piece. Priceless. Will not start. Can not be driven. Built to look at. Add to that the fear that it could be destroyed while driving. Or it could even self-destruct. "Okay", says Christoph, "come over. Just need to briefly charge the batteries. They should be flat. The only condition: Driving in the rain is taboo."

200 Nm, 2.06 meter wheelbase, 400 kg with a full tank

Two weeks later. It is slightly cloudy, and the weather forecast for the Cologne area says there is a 50 percent chance of rain. Polished bright and with a full tank, the Twintrax glitters ready to go in the yard. Christoph circled them from his office into the courtyard with millimeter precision through two high glass doors. For years the sun has been breaking on the angular surfaces again. “Here,” says Christoph thoughtfully, “you put the ignition key in, and that’s the button for the electric starter.” His finger points to an almost invisible cutout in the left handle. I would never have figured it out on my own. The nonchalance with which I put this chunk on the phone and 400 kilometers away suddenly gives way to awesome respect. 160 hp. Around 200 Newton meters of torque. 2.06 meter wheelbase. 400 kilograms with a full tank. Price: priceless. “Is there anything I still need to know?” Christoph purses his lips. “Nah,” he says with a smile, “works like all normal motorcycles. Is just a little bigger. "

Like all normal motorcycles. Aha. Perhaps most likely at the start. At the push of a button, two starter shafts disengage and chase the two crankshafts into their orbits. Immediately the cattle roared moderately. Exactly so loud that the neighbors don’t laugh, but also don’t call out the green-whites right away. But then! It’s around 95 centimeters from the center of the seat to the handlebars. That alone wouldn’t be too bad. But is it in connection with the fact that the footrests are mounted far back and high up, similar to those for a pillion passenger. Means that you have to drive while lying down. Your wrists and abdominal muscles have to support your entire body weight.


The Twintrax Power Plus with what feels like a five meter wheelbase and 2.8 liter displacement.

Somebody once said that everyone has a washboard abs. Unfortunately, you don’t see him with me. Besides, I think I’m the only one who doesn’t. Man, is that exhausting! And not yet driven a meter. Next problem: the foot brake and gear lever are mounted vertically under the notches. While my right foot is looking for a secure footing, the left leg is stretched spagatically and the foot is trying to click into first gear. Beads of sweat run down my neck. Christoph looks skeptical and hesitantly asks about the coverage of our insurance. Click, first gear is there. Now let’s get away from the farm. As this sculpture starts moving, I think about two things. First: It was a stupid idea to take the Twintrax for a trip through Cologne city center. And second: Christoph Madaus is a designer. Perhaps he has taken many courses, read smartly, sought advice from luminaries, and checked everything ten times. But honestly: You can’t do kung fu for a long time after reading a hundred books about it.

I don’t have much time to complete these philosophical thoughts. Because switching is already the order of the day. The hydraulic clutch works great, is easy to operate and fine-tuned. But first my foot gropes in the void. Finally! Switching process finished. But already the first red light. A traffic light that reminds me of my first life in cross-country sport and the related debris fracture of the heel bone on the right: The foot brake lever is at an angle that I can no longer achieve with the debris foot. Thank goodness the monster has a well-functioning double-disc brake system at the front, in which two six-piston brake calipers ensure a respectable deceleration. Extremely reassuring. If it weren’t for the old Metzeler M880, assembled in 1995. There are even pimples on the tread.

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The Twintrax shoots forward and leaves the BMW 5 series

“Hey!” Shouts from the car next to me. Two foreign citizens put their sunglasses over their mouths. Her eyes threaten to flood out of their sockets. "Where did you buy that?" “Ebay,” I yell back. I know it’s a lie, but google it. Green! Aisle in, open fire. The Twintrax shoots forward and makes the 5-series BMW look old. After ten minutes, in which my left foot learns to thread its way exactly between the gearshift lever and footrest, the Twintrax begins to flirt, showing me how well it works. Except for the foot brake lever, which I cannot reach due to an injury, it actually drives like a normal motorcycle.

It is particularly impressive how Christoph has implemented the power transmission: two 1,340 cubic evolution motors each transmit their 80 hp to the transmission via two wide toothed belts. The Twintrax is great on the gas, and when you really load it, the load rushes forward. If you believe the digital instrument, the engines turn up to 5800 rpm. Finally an air-cooled Harley that manages over 11,000 rpm. Record. For that you have to try two engines.

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"You’re not too small for that thing?"

Petrol station in Cologne-Bruck. Crowd. "Aren’t you too small for that thing?" “Does it run on diesel?” Not far. "Isn Vauacht, right?" What should I answer now? V4? "No, someone has installed two V2 in a row here." Silence. The crowd nods. Every falling penny would be an earthquake. I saddle up again. When driving out of the tank, the surprisingly large steering angle of the Twintrax suits me very well. It’s much bigger than some Triumph or Ducati superbikes. If it weren’t for this lying position that lets me do push-ups all the time, I would take this thing to Dusseldorf for a moment and brag about the fact that this chunk was made in Cologne.

But Dusseldorf is comparatively far, because apart from the seating position, the Twintrax is not a reference bike for seating comfort either – a frame cross brace runs right in front of the saddle, which involuntarily massages my groin area. And we’re talking about tubular steel here, not delicate woman’s hands. Despite everything: I’m thrilled. Because this monster does not live up to my worst fears. It can actually be driven almost normally. When I say this to Christoph, while the Twintrax is crackling again in his yard, he just grins quietly to himself.

Technical specifications


Self-designed, like almost everything on the Twintrax: Power transmission via transmission drive via two wide Gates toothed belts to the clutch.

Madaus Twintrax Power Plus

Two Harley-Davidson Evolution engines, each with 1340 cm3, about 160 hp, about 200 Newton meters of torque, 42 mm carburettor, five-speed gearbox, Kevlar dry clutch with seven plates, transmission drive via two Gates belts, width 50 mm and 85 mm, final drive via 525 O-ring chain, metal catalyst.

Landing gear:
Single-loop tubular frame made of precision steel, 45 mm white power upside-down fork, adjustable compression and rebound, aluminum swing arm with two White Power mono spring struts, fully adjustable, Fischer disk wheels 3.50 x 18; 6.50 x 15, tire size front 130 / 70-18, rear 200 / 70-15, double-disc brake system at the front, Ø 320 mm, single-disc brake system at the rear, Ø 280 mm, each with a billet six-piston fixed calliper.

Mass and weight:
Wheelbase 2060 mm, steering head angle 63 degrees, caster 109.7 mm, suspension travel f / r 120/70 mm, seat height 780 mm, weight with a full tank: 400 kilograms, weight distribution: f / r 51/49%, tank capacity 14 liters.

Interview with Christoph Madaus


Interview with Christoph Madaus.

"With the highest standards"

The 54-year-old from Cologne is no longer a stranger to the custom bike scene and could even turn his hobby into a profession. Creations like the cool bobber Billy Bob, the mix of modern parts and meticulous restoration at his KHRM or his last work, the XLCH, are an asset to any exhibition.

? Many have thought that the Twintrax was your first and last work. But it seems to have only been the beginning…

! No, my first motorcycle that I converted is a Harley FXR. I realized the project in 1992. In 1995 the start of the Twintrax took place. Then came the XLCR Cafe Racer, the KHRM, the Billy-Bob-Bobber, and the XLCH has just finished. The models can all be viewed on the website

? How many projects do you still have up your sleeve, when is the end?

! I don’t really want to expand my portfolio. Maybe I’ll rebuild the FXR again because it no longer corresponds to my current vision. Basically there are always ideas, but that needs to be considered in peace. After all, I have a few motorbikes that are all registered and with which I take turns.

? Is there anything other than Harley-Davidson that could appeal to you?

! (Thinks) Hmm, I’ve already thought of converting an old BMW with a two-valve boxer. You could make something beautiful out of it, something airy, clean. Let’s see. Maybe I’ll get bored after all…

? So far, you’ve only built the bikes for yourself. Wouldn’t it be a challenge to make them for customers?

! Clear no! I am afraid that I will lose my fun with it. One should strictly separate hobby and job. I love screwing in winter and driving in summer. If I took on these kinds of jobs, then I would also work in the summer and would be less able to drive. But the thing, as it is, has other advantages: I am not in any commercial competition with the customizers of the scene, which makes dealing with them pleasant. And ultimately, creations such as Billy Bob or the KHRM would be extremely expensive, far too expensive. Because I approach all my projects, be it as an interior designer or motorcycle builder, extremely meticulously and with the highest standards of design, workmanship and material.

? What do you actually prefer to do, restore or construct??

! Basically I prefer to construct, because I can let my creativity run free. The renovation is just something to keep the vehicles in top condition.

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