Test Pilots: What's your status?

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jstibal
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Joined: 03/17/2008
Points: 45

Since all the test pilots have had their scooters for the better part of a year or more, I thought it would be useful to document how the scooters are performing and any impressions we have. Hopefully this will be of use both to prospective buyers and to Current Motors Company staff.

Here's my status:

  • Model: Current Motors C130 (roughly equivalent to the production 'High Performance Super Scooter')
  • Delivery date: December 1, 2011
  • Rider profile: Tall and heavy (6'7" and 280 lbs; 305 lbs in gear and with a backpack).
  • Mileage: 2336 miles on the odometer (the BCU reports somewhat less)
  • Typical daily mileage: 34 miles
  • Longest single trip: 21 miles
  • Highest daily mileage: 56 miles
  • Return on investment: So far the scooter is paying for itself. I now fill up my truck (26 gallons of diesel @ $4.17/gal) only once a month or less, down from 2-3 times per month.
  • Maximum range (estimated): 40+ miles. I did a commute back and forth to work that was over 38 miles on a single charge, and was just dropping to the 'E' on the energy gauge (the BCU reported 20% of battery capacity remaining)
  • Typical charge pattern: Charge to 80-100% nightly, partial charge at work. Full balance charge on the weekend.
  • Typical route taken: Most of my commute is at 45-55 MPH, with the last three miles on I-94 at 65-69MPH
  • Top Speed: 69.5MPH as recorded electronically by the BCU (over 70MPH on the mechanical odometer)
  • Problems: I had a a few bad cells when I first took delivery that severely limited the range of my scooter. CMC came to my house, took the scooter back to Ann Arbor, replaced the cells (and did some other upgrades) then returned it to me all under warranty, no problem. I'm very happy with the service, and have had no problems since then.
  • Minor issues: There are a few plastic squeaks in the front, but nothing I'm concerned about or wouldn't expect on a pre-production scooter. The front steering column also shifts slightly under hard braking; I think the bearing on whatever's the scooter equivalent of the triple-tree needs to be tightened just a bit. I plan to find a local scooter shop to check that.
  • Observations: I've been told that the rear turn signals are very difficult to see in bright sunlight. I'm planning to look into alternate bulbs to resolve this.
  • Modifications: I added an OpenLog data logger to capture data from the BCU. No modifications other than that.
  • Overall impression: I've been very happy with my scooter; it's done everything I was hoping for and more. When I applied to be a test pilot, I wrote in my application that my minimum requirement was to be able to go 45 MPH on a long uphill part of my commute; I can easily hold 55 MPH on that hill and can accelerate up to over 60 MPH if necessary. I'm so confident in the ability of the scooter that I've changed my daily route to include 3 miles of highway travel, which decreases my commute by 3 miles overall.
  • Recommending the scooter: I have no problem recommending this scooter based on range or performance (ok, it's a bit slow off the line). However, with the price increases that have occurred, choosing CMC is no longer the slam-dunk it was when I purchased it. The price for the Super Scooter is now a bit higher than the Brammo Enertia, and a bit less expensive than the Enertia Plus, while the High Performance Super Scooter is in the same price range with the Zero DS. I would think that each of these vehicles fill a different niche, with the Zero being a more aggressive, typical motorcycle riding position, the Brammo Enertia being a bit more upright with the feet further forward, while the CMC design is something else entirely with the step-through scooter. I've not driven either the Zero or the Brammo motorcycles, and I'm very happy with my scooter, but as I said it's no longer as easy to definitively recommend the CMC over the others now; the decision would be rather subjective based on styling and comfort.

What do the rest of you think?

__________________

Jon Stibal
2008 EVT America Z-20A
2011 CMC C130 - my daily driver:

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PJD
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Joined: 11/22/2006
Points: 1240
Re: Test Pilots: What's your status?

Model: C124

Delivery: May 2011

Rider: medium height and definitely a bit of middle-aged spread 5"10" and 190 lbs

Mileage: about 4900 actual miles

Typical daily mileage 12-15 miles

Longest trip about 35 miles

Highest Daily Mileage: about the same

ROI: Difficult to determine. It replaced a smaller scooter; I was using public transportation to get to my previous job, and was already not using the car (old small Toyota PU much except for out-of-town trips.

Maximum range: I rode it 52 miles full charge to first low-pack warning last summer, but my average speed is probably a lot lower than most users. Pittsburgh is a city of neighborhoods, ergo neighborhood streets; it's rarely ridden faster than 45 mph, briefly to 50. I'm also a stickler on gentle-throttle, regen-down-every-hill, economy-riding the scooter. All figures are real miles (mechanical ODO reading/1.165)

Top speed - a bit below 65 mph in hot weather, between 50-55 mph in cold (freezing or below) weather.

Problems: I think I had the lemon of the bunch, so the list is long. Lots of things failed over the first half-year of ownership, which I'll have to summarize in a separate post. Fortunately, I do almost all my own repairs and component replacements, and CuMoCo was very responsive in sending replacement parts and (on one occasion) taking it back to Ann Arbor for repairs. But this year, the scooter has been very reliable in its second season of every-day riding - no trouble at all except for some minor tweaks.

Modifications:

Reconfigured and greatly deepened the under-seat storage area to take advantage of all the empty space not used for extra cells in the C124. Terry provided me with the black sheet PVC and adhesive to do it. I can now carry the contents of a major grocery shopping trip under the seat.

Bought a top case - a Coocase V37. But the latch mechanism required some repair/home modification right out of the box, so I'm not sure I can recommend this particular brand.

Went to all LED lighting (except headlights of course). This improved the brake and turn signal visibility and frees up DC-Dc converter wattage for brighter headlights. See my old thread about this.

Replaced the stock headlight bulbs (25/25 W on some 35/35W on others) with 45/40 W halogen bulbs with the same BA20D base (available from across the pond via e-bay) They could still stand to be brighter. They make a 50/50W BA20D, or just convert to H4 automotive bulbs. See my thread about this.

Replaced the charger door hinge switch with a 120V mains-actuated relay. Maybe this is a bit OCD, but I worry about slowly discharging the battery pack during storage if the door is left open or the switch/hinge mechanism malfunctions. See my thread about it too.

Rigged cell-voltage check-points, using 25 pins of a connector mounted under the charger door, connected to the BMS wires that go to each cell. This allows immediate identification of a bad cell or a BMS malfunction using a voltmeter, without having to access any wiring connectors. This is a vital feature that every e-scooter needs.

Replaced the front tire - a Pirelli SL25, one size bigger than stock (130/70-12). The old tire developed "sawtooth"-like tread wear, making a lot of hum and vibration.

Most recently, modded the front forks (increased pre-load and stiffness) to correct some bottoming-out and occasional kickstand dragging on left turns. This also ended up greatly reducing an annoying all-speed wobble-oscillation that starts if ridden with a very light grip or one-handed. These cheap Chinese "fake" front shocks (they have no damping) remain a weak point of CuMoCo's scooters, in my opinion.

Overall Impression: I like the scooter, and it has been running very reliably since last November. It has perfectly ample performance and range for going practically anywhere in the greater Pittsburgh area and back. But I'll be blunt. Workmanship issues aside, the the standard Chinese scooter body style has a very low "cool factor" in the US at present. I still get occasional catcalls on it. Like my smaller scooter, they continue to call it a "moped" in spite of its larger size and far more potent performance. And that is not a complement; "Moped" in my city means "personal transportation for someone too poor to afford anything else". But the production version of this "moped" costs at least $10,000! And until there is an authorized dealer network, it will be difficult to find a motorcycle/scooter repair shop that will be willing to work on them.

Things have come a ways in the electric motor scooter world since my first one back in 2005, but they have a ways to go before they find a place in the US marketplace.

pluginride
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Joined: 09/02/2011
Points: 18
Re: Test Pilots: What's your status?

No new posts in a long time regarding Current Motor. What's going on? Also, website is static - no updates in months. Is this company shipping production scooters or not? Looking for some encouraging news, as was hoping this one would make it. Good people are behind this company, IMHO.

PJD
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Joined: 11/22/2006
Points: 1240
Re: Test Pilots: What's your status?

I hope for the best, but it would be pollyannish to not be a little pessimistic about their success. The current social-political-economic environment in the US right now is about as hostile to EV's as I've ever seen - particularly a two-wheel one with a 5-digit (once taxes and fees are thrown in) price tag. And now 2-wheel EV's no longer even get a federal government subsidy which will be removed for all EVs if we get a Republican president and congress.

I experienced my first episode of "range anxiety" in 1 1/2 years of ownership yesterday. My previous range estimates of more than 50 miles (this is a C124) have been based on the low speed urban/old-inner-suburban use. Well, I had to actually take it out into the far-flung exurban mall-and-industrial park sprawl near the airport yesterday, which requires 45-50 mph riding plus a stretch of freeway riding. I managed almost 70 mph going downhill, but not quite 60 mph and declining on the uphill return trip. I was scanning for electric outlets to opportunity charge pretty hard the last 8 miles or so. The 3-flash low pack warning light came on right at the 40 mile (65 km) point - a couple miles before the house, but got home fine. Ambient temp. for this trip was upper 30's F (4C)

I don't blame the scooter. First there are the seemingly deliberately-circuitous distances between everything, in spite of everything being paved over with parking lot, in such a suburban environment. Then the "electricity, electricity everywhere, but not a drop (just a simple frigging 120 volt outlet) to drink" feeling. But of course I probably passed by a dozen places to get gasoline! There are presumably outlets behind those ice-freezers in front of the convenience stores - but watch the police come if I dared sneak a charge at one!

LeftieBiker
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Points: 653
Re: Test Pilots: What's your status?

That's what it's like here. I've asked at convenience stores and gas stations - once when I was running on stray electrons - and always been refused. One chain store (Stewart's Shops) refused over email for all of their stores. I asked two national parks, and the one that uses GEMs also refused. The only "yes" I got was from Saratoga Battlefield national park, and they have old wiring. I would use it, but didn't need to, this year. The only time I got to opportunity charge was the time I rode about 60 miles on the ZEV, and paid a couple selling all their possessions at a yard sale $5. (This was the same trip I got refused at the gas station.) I also bought some of their stuff. The more money you have here in America, the more greedy you are...

PJD
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Points: 1240
Re: Test Pilots: What's your status?

Leftiebiker,

Quite absurd, isn't it? We are talking about at very most, $0.25 worth of electricity, and, of course we would even pay them 100 time more! Are they too stupid to see a business opportunity?

As someone who has been riding e-scooters for 7 years now, I long ago gave up asking, because I know what the answer will be. I sneak my charges.

Shame though, about the National Parks. The days of Stewart Udall are long over. I've always wanted to e-scooter the whole length of Skyline Drive in Virginia's Shenandoah National Park - now I know to not even bother asking.

I may get banned for writing this, but God _fuck_ the USA. Has there ever been such a fucked-up agglomeration of 300 million people?

On Thursday, I'm voting for Jill Stein and Cheri Honkala of the Green Party, USA - and you should too. Why not? Especially where you are in the state of New York, where the pathetic Obama has those absurd "electoral college" votes guaranteed anyway.

And all you Californians out there - you should vote for Jill Stein too. And also, PLEASE ignore that absolutely risible Monsanto Corp. propaganda and vote "Yes" on Proposition 37. PLEASE join the rest of the civilized world in having the simple requirement that your food be labeled as to whether it has genetically modified crap in it or not. We here in the unfashionable East, who have no such mechanism for popular participatory democracy, will thank you for it!

LeftieBiker
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Points: 653
Re: Test Pilots: What's your status?

You're preaching to the converted, Brother. I'm voting Green, explain the electoral system 50 times a year (to no avail), and would love to see benevolent aliens (preferably smarter than us!) take over. In 1980, when Reagan was elected, I was about 18 and figured I could weather 8 years. 32 years later I'm a bit sick of the whole race.

LeftieBiker
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Points: 653
Re: Test Pilots: What's your status?

Oh, and while I'm not a 'test pilot', as the only owner of a lead-silicone ZEV 5000 with 8500 watt hub motor that I know of, my verdict is that I would have liked the bike if it hadn't been f*cked up in transit and then only partially fixed by the company. I would have *loved* it if the worst Chinese components (forks, flasher unit, rear fender) plus the controller were of better quality. The controller doesn't die, but only the 2nd of the three "speeds" is worth using. 1st is fine for about a mile before it starts to cut out and in at too low a speed (about 25MPH), and 3rd just seems to add about 3MPH to the top speed, without doing anything noticeable for acceleration. The range, handling (for a lead battery bike) and overall ride are great. So is the reliability of the drive train, if not the chargers. The brakes are good. Not outstanding, but more than adequate for one rider, and adequate for two people and not troublesome. I'd be curious to see if the newer ZEVs have improved in the areas I mentioned. For the price, it's a very good scooter.

PJD
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Points: 1240
Re: Test Pilots: What's your status?

Quote:

In 1980, when Reagan was elected, I was about 18 and figured I could weather 8 years.

Funny how on the internet, we make judgements of people based on subtle writing style hints things they talk about. I had thought from your old posts that you were an old retiree.

I was 24 when Reagan was elected. Jimmy Carter was no great leader, but I will always remember his superb "Crisis of Confidence" Speech (renamed the "Malaise Speech" by the derisive corporate media) one year earlier. It marked the high-water mark of integrity among the so-called leaders of the USA. It has been all downhill from there. We will never see such frank, straight-talk from a US President again. Maybe in some future republic when we have overthrown the whole vile system. Carter continues his good work - including his criticism of the US electoral system, and the US's 51st state - the ethnic-cleansing state of Israel. The corporate media ignores him.

Regarding your front wobble woes, my Current scooter also has a annoying all-speed handlebar shimmy-shake if I try to ride it no hands or with my hands just lightly resting on the grips. I've tried several things to no avail. I have assumed that it is just due to either the "fake" (no actual damping) front shocks, or the triple-bracket being insufficiently rigid. it seems to be a widespread problem with Chinese Scooters.

LeftieBiker
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Re: Test Pilots: What's your status?

"Funny how on the internet, we make judgements of people based on subtle writing style hints things they talk about. I had thought from your old posts that you were an old retiree."

I'm getting there, Gramps! ;-) I'm eligible to retire next Summer at 55, but 20 years of poor health and part-time government employment have left me with both a 'Grumpy Old Man' tone (constant pain will do that, eventually) and a pension that amounts to maybe $6k a year. The Phantom was supposed to be my consolation prize for having to keep working. ;-( BTW, I had pictured you as being about 10-15 years younger than me.

I could live with a front shimmy like yours, but mine tries to turn into a Death Wobble / Death Bounce when I use the front brake at speed. My braking technique has been forced into "Use the rear brake mainly, and if you have to use both brakes, don't use the front for more than two seconds." I also don't use it at all in turns. I forgot to note in my review of the ZEV that the brake levers are *way* too big and too far from the grips for a man with average-sized hands and average length fingers. Reshaping them so I can comfortably apply them is high on my to-do list for the ZEV.

I don't completely agree with you on Carter (think East Timor, Afghanistan, and nuclear reactors) but compared to what we have now we otherwise concur. Hell, the last decade has made me soften my opinions about *Reagan*. Man, I never thought THAT would happen...

IBScootn
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Points: 233
Re: Test Pilots: What's your status?

Can we return the thread back to the op's question? Dang, this has turned into a gumpy old guys bitch-fest. Just think how crappy things would have turned out with McCain.

The two CUMOCO respondents seem to have gotten good use of their bikes, but where are the other users? Did they take advantage of the referral program? How many production bikes are getting sold?

I was thrilled to see CUMOCO get their bikes into production; less thrilled to see the price increase. I wish them well.

The maxi-scooter style is a hard sell with the average American male. I ride my e-moto everywhere, but only women, kids, and retired males seem to like the maxi-scooter styling. I put lettering on my trunk (460 MPGe) and still little interest.

I look forward to more reports from the test pilots.

__________________

Motorcycles:
2011 ZEV Trail 7100, 84V, 60AH, 75+mph, Cycle Analyst, TNC throttle, modified charger. 800 miles so far.
2010 ZEV 6100, 72V, 40AH, 60+mph; Cycle Analyst, LED head lights, 3 Cell Log interfaces, TNC throttle and faster charger added. 8100 miles so far.

Big EV Grin. :)

MEroller
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Points: 649
Re: Test Pilots: What's your status?

No test pilot here either, at least not for a CUMOCO scoot. However, with the hefty price increase I am pretty convinced that they absolutely failed in one of their main objectives. I quote from their own history portrayal, the first sentence actually:

"John Harding and Erik Kauppi, ex-Ford engineers and EV pioneers, co-founded Current Motor with the vision of combining the performance level of more expensive electric motorcycle competitors with a lower purchase price and a near maintenance free ownership experience."

FAIL!

__________________

My (former...) ride: E-Sprit Fury (basis is the ZAP/Erider Thunder 5000) since May 03, 2011. Mods: Battery temp. gauge and battery heating (off the grid and off the battery), Kelly KEB72801X, reverse activated, luggage rack with topcase, HC Cycle Analyst, Emsiso BMS2405, 35mm² battery cables, now wrecked

PzlPete
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Re: Test Pilots: What's your status?

Xtreme 4000Li Lithium 40ah. Showroom display, paid $1900. Currently at 14,300 miles. Has paid for itself 4 times over based on driving those same miles in my SUV. Has 2 year warranty on the batteries, and still under warranty period. I am 6'2, 225 lbs. Best range to date is 47.6 miles. Top speed around 53 mph.

LCJUTILA
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Points: 73
Re: Test Pilots: What's your status?

Hi All-

I am a test pilot for Current Motor and the company is alive and well.

I have 1,600 miles on my bike and it has never left me stranded.

LCJUTILA

__________________

LCJUTILA

LCJUTILA
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Points: 73
Re: Test Pilots: What's your status?

Bashing 50% of the American people for their political views is one BIG reason more people don't support E.V.s You are alienating half of your potential support.

Leave the politics out of it and stress the benefits and we will start seeing more vehicles every day. (Ans we will start getting along better too.)

__________________

LCJUTILA

honesteffort1
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Points: 25
Re: Test Pilots: What's your status?

I think it was Mark Twain that said," The rumors of my death are greatly exaggerated". We are not dead. We are busy with more projects than we can shake a stick at. Why don't you guys pick up the phone and call to find out, instead of one person writing that they haven't heard anything in a while, and others writing a eulogy? I just did a repair job and updates on two bikes in Seattle and Idaho, and I've got more to go. We've got one test pilot past 6000 miles, several past 5000, and I'm still sending parts out to everyone that calls me. Busy...yes. Don't get back with people because I'm busy with other bikes...yes. Dead...far from it. Just keep watching.

And as for the FAIL guy. Ask some of the bike riders how much they've paid for repairs on their test pilots. Then ask them if it was a value or not.

Respectfully,

Terry the Shoprat/honesteffort1

__________________

Terry the Shoprat

LCJUTILA
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Points: 73
Re: Test Pilots: What's your status?

In response to Terry the Shoprat's post-

The service I have recieved form Current Motor Co has been very good. I am a Test Pilot and there have been some glitches with the bike that we have worked through, but as I said in a previous post,"The bike has never left me stranded."

I would say the approach the company is using is to build a dependable bike that is somewhat idiot proof and has a high reserve of capacity and is somewhat over-engineered.

I initially was making suggestions to increase the performance in the belief that they were leaving a lot on the table with the platform they have.

On reflection I have come to agree with their approach. When dealing with the general public, in order to maintain your reputation for the long run, you have to build a somewhat bulletproof product that requires zero work on the part of the customer.There are very few people who are willing to tinker with their transportation these days.

My experience with them shows me that is their goal.

Each bike is an Ambassodor for electric transportation.

__________________

LCJUTILA

MikeB
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Points: 517
Re: Test Pilots: What's your status?

Hiya folks,

I haven't been dropping by as often, but I'm still the first test pilot, and my bike is still getting regular use.

Model: C130 Deluxe
Delivery date: Feb 3, 2010
Rider profile: Medium guy
Mileage: 6120 miles. Yea, I'm over 6k now. :)
Typical daily mileage: 17 miles
Typical charge pattern: overnight full charge via timer
Typical route taken: fast suburban arteries, 20-55mph depending on traffic, 5 miles to work one way
Top speed: 66mph on GPS, (speedo needle was buried beyond 70).

Problems: Honestly, I've had issues with just about everything, but that was expected since I'm the first. I killed the hall sensors in my motor, fried a battery cell, killed the controller, had issues with the charger and the BMS. I've replaced the dash, dropped the bike due to poor sidestand position, broken the throttle, broken the luggage rack supports. Earlier this summer, I had my first fall, taking a slide after hitting wet/oily pavement after a rain. Frankly, I've pushed the bike moderately hard, and found the weaknesses. On the good side, the guys at Current have been great at sending me replacement parts, and then redesigning the bike so the problem won't happen in the future.

Modifications: Added LED driving lights to the forks, added Givi trunk to the luggage rack, upgraded headlight bulbs to halogen, replaced brake and tail bulbs with LEDs.
Overall Impression: I'm happy with the bike overall. It's good enough for my daily needs, and has been worth what I paid. My biggest remaining complaints about the bike are the headlights and the acceleration below 10mph.
Recommending the scooter: The bike has gotten better over the last couple years, but the price has also gone up. At this point, a buyer who can afford the Current bike can also afford a slightly higher end electric motorcycle, so the decision comes down to preferred body style. My guess is that next year's bike will be an improvement over this year's model, and probably tip the price/features balance back in favor of Current.

I haven't ridden for the last week or so, but that's because I took the rear wheel off to put on a new tire. I think it's safe to say 6k miles is going to be typical for the rear, maybe 7k+ for the front.

In other news, I've placed an order for a new car, a Ford C-Max Energi. It's a plug-in hybrid, and can easily take me to work and back on all-electric drive. I'm happy to see more plug-in hybrids on the market, and some competition between major automakers. However, being able to get to work using electricity in the safety and comfort of a car will mean I'm not going to be scooting as often, especially in the winter.

__________________

My electric vehicle: CuMoCo C130 scooter.

MEroller
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Re: Test Pilots: What's your status?

@Terry the Shoprat: Here's the "FAIL guy" :-) Let me elaborate on my opinion of failure to fulfill the first CUMOCO goal (which I didn't set, by the way...):
I will take your High Performance Super Scooter as a basis for comparison.
You currently list it at $11,495.
Vectrix VX1 Li: $11,995, but for the slight premium you get around 18kW of realistic peak power vs. maybe 9kW or so from your 5kW Motor. But in principle you win this one.
Brammo Enertia Plus: $10,995, $500 cheaper than your HP model, but of course a naked bike. Yet - the Brammo is cheaper.
Zero S ZF6: $11,495 => a tie, but though the Zero is also a naked bike it is far faster than your HP model.

Now I am moving more directly into your territory:
ZEV 7100 LR: $8,990. That is a whopping $2,505 less than your HP model, and Zehrbach's scoot is faster but has a comparable range.

This is getting unfair to a certain degree now, as there is no US assembly in this product, but it is a wicked E-scooter nevertheless:
Xiamen ZAP/Erider Puma: $4,580 (acc. to Alibaba), plus shipping to the US. But this beast has an 8/12kW motor and a smooth Sevcon vector controller (no groaning Kelly) on board!

Imho CUMOCO have raised their production scooter prices beyond their very own first goal.

That aside, I also like your approach with the test pilots and the open discussions here on the forum very much and wish you all the best, but I fear the steep price tag will in summary lead to less revenue than you could have achieved with a slightly more moderate price increase. Time will tell...
In any case it was very nice to hear that the rumors of CUMOCO's demise were greatly exagerated :-)

The same cannot be said of the importers of my ride :-(

__________________

My (former...) ride: E-Sprit Fury (basis is the ZAP/Erider Thunder 5000) since May 03, 2011. Mods: Battery temp. gauge and battery heating (off the grid and off the battery), Kelly KEB72801X, reverse activated, luggage rack with topcase, HC Cycle Analyst, Emsiso BMS2405, 35mm² battery cables, now wrecked

LeftieBiker
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Re: Test Pilots: What's your status?

Again, not a test rider, just the owner of a ZEV that was damaged in shipping, "fixed" at the factory and returned to me. You wouldn't believe the Hell I catch via email when Darus decides to come here and read what I wrote. So I've asked him to restrict his er, critiques to this forum... Anyway, there has been an ongoing discussion about who supplies the forks for our bikes, because a lot of them are developing dangerous characteristics while riding. Darus says that his come from "Ningbo Hi-Tech". Has anyone else found the supplier for theirs?

LCJUTILA
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Points: 73
Re: Test Pilots: What's your status?

Gentlemen-If your comments are regarding "Test Pilots:What's your status?" please feel free to participate in this forum.

Other folks, I am very interested in your experiences with your bikes and opinions on other issues but please post them in the appropriate thread.It is unfair to do otherwise. Peace and love!

__________________

LCJUTILA

M.Chen
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Points: 80
Re: Test Pilots: What's your status?

PzlPete wrote:

Xtreme 4000Li Lithium 40ah. Showroom display, paid $1900. Currently at 14,300 miles. Has paid for itself 4 times over based on driving those same miles in my SUV. Has 2 year warranty on the batteries, and still under warranty period. I am 6'2, 225 lbs. Best range to date is 47.6 miles. Top speed around 53 mph.

Very good,that maybe our longest live E-scooter with TS battery ,see attached
Xtreme.JPG

LCJUTILA
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Points: 73
Re: Test Pilots: What's your status?

Apparently somebody is buying electric scooters out there! They look like ZEVs.

__________________

LCJUTILA

M.Chen
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Points: 80
Re: Test Pilots: What's your status?

When we produce XM4000li in 2008,ZEV was not born yet ..........3.jpg

pluginride
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Re: Test Pilots: What's your status?

Leftie, it would be interesting if you were to post some of those emails from ZEV's founder here on the forum. Others might appreciate knowing what they're in for if they buy a ZEV and post feedback on VIFV.

PJD
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Points: 1240
Re: Test Pilots: What's your status?

Mike B. wrote;

Quote:

I think it's safe to say 6k miles is going to be typical for the rear, maybe 7k+ for the front.

I am approaching 5500 (actual) miles. I already replaced the front tire after it has developed a sort-of sawtooth-shaped wear profile and rode noisy like a truck tire. The rear is wearing smoothly but needs replacing soon. It took shard of glass, and I have been running it with a repair plug in it for about 700 miles. Yeah, I know; not recommended with a scooter or motorcycle, but the puncture was in a thick part of the tread away from the worn center line, so I tried it and it holds well, but is recently leaking slowly.

I had CuMoCo keep that long loop of motor phase/hall/sensor wire, so I'll be attempting a home tire replacement (tire irons and makeshift bead-breaker) without disconnecting any wires.

Are you familiar with the trick on how to balance it on the bike?

LeftieBiker
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Joined: 07/09/2011
Points: 653
Re: Test Pilots: What's your status?

I'm not going to post any private emails unless I get more unsolicited 'feedback' on my posts. I don't think my experience is typical of ZEV owners. Just keep in mind, if you want to buy a ZEV, that:

* ZEV is located here in the US, and contacting them isn't really hard. Parts seem easy to get, unless all you want is a key blank. That I cannot get because he buys only lock and key sets, and doesn't have a source for blanks that he knows will fit. I just got a list of urls for places that sell Chinese scooter key blanks.

* Darus is human, and not the most laid-back guy I've ever met.

* I did get that 8500 watt motor instead of a replacement 5000 watt unit. The 5kw unit was OK, but it hits a wall at an indicated 50MPH in "2nd", while the bigger, finned motor will easily go to 55, and will creep up as high as 58. It is probably also giving me a few more miles' range due to higher efficiency, and makes "3rd" unnecessary in most situations.

MikeB
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Joined: 04/14/2008
Points: 517
Re: Test Pilots: What's your status?

PJD wrote:

Are you familiar with the trick on how to balance it on the bike?

I had some trouble getting the tire installed. The machine they had at my preferred scooter shop wasn't tall enough, the motor axle hit the plate and kept the tire above the supports. The second tire place had a machine that was tall enough, but couldn't really handle a scooter radius tire. The guy mostly muscled the tire on for me.

Terry told me that the balance beads weren't doing much good, so I left them out. I haven't re-installed the wheel yet, what's your trick for balancing?

__________________

My electric vehicle: CuMoCo C130 scooter.

LCJUTILA
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Joined: 05/21/2012
Points: 73
Re: Test Pilots: What's your status?

I used to mount and balance tires and this is how I would approach this. KEEP IN MIND THAT THIS APPROACH CAN BE HAZARDOUS AND TAKE ALL PRECAUTIONS NECESSARY.

I would put the bike up on it's center stand as securely as possible.
Then i would remove all old weights from the wheel and back off the spring settings on the rearshocks to their softest setting.
Turn the bike on and slowly apply the throttle while standing to the side and watching the rear wheel. It will start hopping slightly because of the imbalance.
Make note of the degree of hopping and take a tire marker and gently and carefully move it until it slightly touches the tire at the bottom of the tire's travel.(This would be marked between the tire bottom and floor) Do this while the tire is spinning and hopping. The point at which the tire is marked is the heavy point on the tire. Make sense?

Now take two small tape on weights of equal weight and put them diametrically opposed to each other at a 90 degreee angle to the mark on the tire. If the tire mark is at 6 o'clock the weights should be at 3 and 9 o'clock. Place the weights as the would be usually placed on the rim in these positions and hold them in place with tape. The idea is that you will move them little by little, in an equal amount toward twelve o'clock, testing the balance each time by spinning the wheel, until the vibration stops.

So for further illustration you might want to try the first position as having the weights at 10 and 2 o'clock. Tape them down. Spin the wheel and note the vibration. If it is better but still there you move the weights further and try again. If you get the weights moved all the way to 12 o'clock and you still have vibration you need to repeat the process from the beginning using heavier weights.

I hope this helps.

PLEASE USE COMMON SENSE AND BE CAREFULL!!

__________________

LCJUTILA

LCJUTILA
Offline
Joined: 05/21/2012
Points: 73
Re: Test Pilots: What's your status?

How to balance tire-

I used to mount and balance tires and this is how I would approach this. KEEP IN MIND THAT THIS APPROACH CAN BE HAZARDOUS AND TAKE ALL PRECAUTIONS NECESSARY.

I would put the bike up on it's center stand as securely as possible.

Then I would remove all old weights from the wheel and back off the spring settings on the rearshocks to their softest setting.

Turn the bike on and slowly apply the throttle while standing to the side and watching the rear wheel. It will start hopping slightly because of the imbalance.
Make note of the degree of hopping and take a tire marker and gently and carefully move it until it slightly touches the tire at the bottom of the tire's travel.(This would be marked between the tire bottom and floor) Do this while the tire is spinning and hopping. The point at which the tire is marked is the heavy point on the tire. Make sense?

Now take two small tape on weights of equal weight and put them diametrically opposed to each other at a 90 degreee angle to the mark on the tire. If the tire mark is at 6 o'clock the weights should be at 3 and 9 o'clock. Place the weights as the would be usually placed on the rim in these positions and hold them in place with tape. The idea is that you will move them little by little, in an equal amount toward twelve o'clock, testing the balance each time by spinning the wheel, until the vibration stops.

So for further illustration you might want to try the first position as having the weights at 10 and 2 o'clock. Tape them down. Spin the wheel and note the vibration. If it is better but still there you move the weights further and try again. If you get the weights moved all the way to 12 o'clock and you still have vibration you need to repeat the process from the beginning using heavier weights.

I hope this helps.

PLEASE USE COMMON SENSE AND BE CAREFULL!!

__________________

LCJUTILA

PJD
Offline
Joined: 11/22/2006
Points: 1240
Re: Test Pilots: What's your status?

Mike and others,

I changed my rear tire myself yesterday, as follows:

1. During the last round of test pilot scooter mods, I requested that Terry NOT shorten to motor leads - leave the loop of slack as-is. This allows tire replacement (using tire irons) without all the work required to access and disconnect the controller connections.

2. I removed the hub motor/wheel assembly and laid it on a pair of 4x4 blocks next to the right side of the scooter, all wires still connected. The excess motor lead length allows plenty of working room. Only the lower side body panel had to be removed.

3. There really is no need for a tire mounting machine for a scooter tire. Old-fashioned tire-irons and jury-rigged bead breaking technique works fine. If you apply silicone spray to make the rubber slippery (works better than soapy water) application of body-weight on the heel of a sturdy, stiff work boot will break the bead most of the time. Otherwise, you may also have to use a c-clamp and wooden blocks. Then, pry the old tire off and the new tire on with tire irons and hand pressure - just like a bicycle tire except the tools are bigger and some cussing might be needed. Use plastic coated tire irons if you don't want scratches on the outside of the rim. ALWAYS make sure the part of the bead not pried off (or when mounting, pried on) is seated down in the "valley" of the rim, or the tire won't go on.

4. I use a variant of LCJUTILA's method to balance the wheel. Tires are often not as round as I would like (sometimes you have to deflate, break the bead, rotate 180 deg. re-inflate to get tire to spin with a reasonable degree of roundness), so I don't mark the bottom of the tire, I mark the inside of the rim. This is generally regarded as the "light" side of the wheel (but may be incorrect**)

LCJUTILA's method using two opposing weights and moving them toward the light side of the wheel is a smart approach! It took me a minute to figure out why - it eliminates guessing the correct amount of weight needed if you are conservatively high on the weight.

More recently, I am coming to the conclusion that marking-while-spinning technique may not be very effective. But even if you place the weight by random guessing, working in quadrants, then half a quadrant, then adjusting the amount of weight, you can get a reasonable balance.

-----------------

**Actually, if I understand the physics, an out of balance wheel seeks to spin about its center of gravity - which is displaced from the axle to the _heavy_ side. This is the basis of how "dyna beads" are supposed to work, but in practice don't work so well - discussion?)

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