Has the Motley Fool been reading the Electric Chronicles? Check it out:
“Scooters make almost too much sense as an electric vehicle. They’re small and lightweight and never travel long distances — at least I wouldn’t drive one very far. We aren’t talking about a huge market, but it makes more sense in a lot of ways than having an electric family sedan. … the smaller electric vehicles could use a little more love from both the industry and the media.”
This is what I been SAYin’!
From “We’re Focusing on the Wrong Electric-Vehicle Market“.
Brammo’s not going to be too pleased with one comment, (“Zero Motorcycles is the closest thing we have right now to a stylish electric bike”) but it’s a pretty interesting take on the market and the media. Keep in mind, I don’t think it’s particularly news, either… several car companies are putting out little concept scooters- BMW, Lexus, VW… somebody there already gets it, I reckon, and is testing waters…
Can I just say? I love the Fool. Anyone with enough humor and humility to give financial advice and call himself the Motley Fool is OK in my book… ”To Educate, Amuse and Enrich”.
25, to get on and post about how it should be done, whether it should be done, how it will never work, how it must work, and how unfair it is to do it any particular way.
5, to post their actual experience in the matter.
2, to post some actual constructive suggestions.
3, to take personal pot-shots at other members, the guy trying to change the bulb, or the guy who invented the bulb in the first place.
1542, to lurk, reading the entire thread for personal amusement and pleasure with no thought of making any contribution whatsoever.
1, to shut the computer off, get off his ass, get on a frikkin ladder, go face-to-face with the lightbulb and change it.
Just found this cool little utility… the Electric Drive Train Simulator (EDTSim) from Enigma Industries. Here’s what the main screen looks like:
VERY cool little tool, only $35, and read all about it via the manual, here.
Among other things, you got this:
Includes four wheel car type and cycle type drive trains that can be used in designing electric go-karts, electric scooters or electric motorcycles.
Simulates battery voltage, state of charge, and internal resistance, so you can see how your bots (bikes) performance changes as the batteries run down.
Motor simulation allows you to see how motors will run at higher or lower voltages than the motor’s designed voltage.
Motor manufacturers rate motors in different ways making it difficult to compare motors. In EDTSim all motors are rated in the same way, using the motor constants, making it easy to compare motors.
Large database of motors includes size, weight, torque, rpm, manufacturer, approximate price and places to buy them.
Motor performance and drive train acceleration graphs.
Large battery database includes size, weight, voltage, internal resistance, Peukert value and capacity at different discharge rates.
EDTSim takes into account motor, batteries and the electrical resistance of the speed controller and wiring and tells you the power of all the components combined.
Includes motor and battery editor so you can use manufacturer specs or test data to add motors and batteries to the database.
Includes example drive trains ranging is size from 1 to 360 lb and can be used for any size drive train that uses permanent magnet DC (PMDC) electric motors.
Includes twelve drive train configurations, two, four and six wheel tank or wheelchair type differential steering (also known as skid steering) drive train types with two, four or six motors. Two and four wheel car type Ackerman steering with front, rear and four wheel drive configurations.
Here’s what I liked best- the acceleration graph:
Waiting for parts… time for some Photoshoppin’:
…incredibly awesome tank and seat via www.silenceTV.com.
Into vintage Yamaha R5s? Need parts? I’m sick of Ebay. Here’s what I got, $10 each or best offer to a good home. Contact me via email with questions, I’ll accept PayPal and credit cards.
Need vintage R5 information (as I do)? Check out www.YamahaR5.com, the obsession of one
Lawrence O’Toole. Game over.
yep. cain’t be good.
Full report forthcoming…
(but ain’t it preeeetttty?)
OK, here’s the dish. It’s a 1971 Yamaha R5 frame, forks and front wheel. The plan is to strip it down, powdercoat or nickle plate the frame, build it as a naked, not street legal cafe build. No lights, no crap, just speed and handling. I’m going to do a universal NEMA C mount face, so I can bolt in my Mars ME0709 motor, but later maybe something else- I’ll do it so the Agni will fit, too. Batteries? I’m thinking LiPo, in a removable/universal pack arrangement. I’m keeping the spoked wheels and the hub brakes… ’cause they look cool.
Once again, into the breach!
Pieces propped together:
A little background. First, the post that brought me back to my Yamaha RD350 roots: on the Hammarhead Volta.
Annnnnd, a shot of my first RD build, back way back in the day…
(“In situ” is Latin for “not having to take the whole damn thing apart to get at the stuff you want to test.”)
Anyway, I don’t know if this falls under “Hindsight is 20/20″, or “Experience is the Best Teacher”, but after all the hoo-haa I went through to tear down the motor and test the sensors, first on the board, then out of the board using the test rig David O’Brien set up, I suddenly realized that when the bike was all together I had everything I needed to test it out- power, the right loads, everything. Cue Homer Simpson.
Simply by doing the same thing Rob suggested, I could see if they were working. Apply power across the sensor power inputs, measure from the ground to each sensor and see if we get voltage. Here’s a little video showing how it’s done.
My conclusion after testing was that, with a new, working controller, two of the sensors weren’t turning fully off, which would account for the new behavior of the motor- spinning like it was fighting against itself- only starting after urging, then spinning slowly, then powering off after a few seconds (presumably a thermal cutoff on the controller).
Stay tuned, new sensors on order!
Today at the Springfield Museums I had a really remarkable surprise- and it keeps on getting better. Mike Corbins electric motorcycle, built in 1975, sits here in the new wing of the museum- and on the top floor, the legendary Indian Motocycle Museum has it’s new home. His XLP-1 sported a 30-mile range and 30mph, and a 3-hour charge time with the on-board charger and was touted as “A motorcycle for Now, that insures our Future”. Corbin has been recognized by the AMA Hall of Fame for his contributions to motorcycling for decades- since he started his career with the purchase of a Triumph Bonneville in 1959.
With the release of the XLP-1, Corbin was riding the wave of a record setting run with his first electric motorcycles at Bonneville in ’73:
“Mikes first project was to build two electric racing motorcycles that ran on electricity and visit the Salt Flats in Utah at the annual Bonneville Nations. Mike went on to set the Electric Motorcycle Land Speed Record of 101 mph. The second bike set a record at 99 mph. Mike proved that electric vehicles can go fast and he became the fastest man in the world on a two wheeled electric vehicle at 101 mph.”
There’s all this and more on the MGMojo site, in the history of the Corbin Sparrow. In 1996, Corbin released the first Sparrow.
…and to think. I just thought the guy simply made the best seats in the business.
Here are some more shots from the visit. The motor was mounted on the swingarm assembly- as unsprung weight, but high and towards the swingarm pivot.
The logo, repeated from the Bonneville bike:
Sweet lookin’ switch. On. Off.
…and, some MADison Avenue material from the day:
OK, RC is a bitch, and wouldn’t tell me where he found these. So I found them my own bad self.
These are the embodiment of awesome awesomenosity, as far as small, compact, high-discharge low(er) priced batteries go, as far as I’m concerned. RC knows his batteries, too, so I’m thinking this is the way to go… should I start with Sparky, or the scoot, or just go balls-to-the-wall and wire up the Big Bike? Time will tell… time will tell… If I put 8 together parallel and do three packs together, that is, 8p3s, I get me 66.6V and 40aH. So that’s 24 of the little sukkas at $60 each… Just under $1500, and weighing in at 43. Wait. FOURTY THREE POUNDS?? What kind of a crazy world are we livin’ in.
If you’re nice, I’ll even tell you where to get them.
Now. You may be interested in learning a little about how to use them. I’d suggest this thread on EndlessSphere. It’s a list of all the links on ES regarding LiPo, and start with this post, explaining the basics if you’re a total noob. Considering the charging and discharging issues with LiPo, this stuff is a MUST read.