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Group experience with WE BD36 at 48Volts

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Joined: 04/14/2008
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Hi Everyone,

I have just finished building my first bike. Its a 1972 Schwinn Speedster with a Sturmey-Archer 3 speed internal hub and a 36V Wilderness Energy BD36 kit. The install went pretty good aside from a few hickups here and there.

I have put about 10 miles on the motor and all the sudden it started making a grinding sound and just quit working. I popped the case open and found that the brush holding bracket for the positive lead was completely melted causing the brush to flop around which is the cause of the grinding sound. Now at 36V my motor is getting hot enough to melt components within the motor, I was hoping to eventually go to 48V once the motor is proven (and the warranty is over) - How are you guys running at 48V getting away with this? Is my controller passing too much current for this motor to handle?

Ambient air temperature is near 60F and the load wasn't anything too significant besides a few small hills here and there.

Your experience is greatly appreciated and I look forward to participating on this forum.


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LinkOfHyrule's picture
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Joined: 10/17/2007
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Points: 730
Re: Group experience with WE BD36 at 48Volts

I think you just got a bad brush. The other one should be more screwed up if it were a problem with the motor. I run 48V and 30A through mine, and haven't had any problems.

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Joined: 04/08/2008
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Points: 25
Re: Group experience with WE BD36 at 48Volts

Nice looking bike!

Yikes on the melted brush assembly. Get a replacement part and put it together. My BD36 has been running for years no problem. There must have been something wrong in assembly.

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Joined: 04/08/2008
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Points: 25
Re: Group experience with WE BD36 at 48Volts

Did the wire wrap around the axle, pulling on the interior connections? Just curious.

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Joined: 04/14/2008
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Points: 3
Re: Group experience with WE BD36 at 48Volts

Motor wiring was completely intact and the dropouts are meaty on this old gal. My hunch is that, like someone said earlier, the brush assmebly was just junk to begin with. Now I get to have fun trying to get Wilderness Energy to honor their warranty - it seems like the dealer I bought the kit from wants me to bypass him and go directly to Wilderness. Is this normal or should I expect the dealer to hasle with WE?

Thanks

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Joined: 04/27/2007
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Points: 33
Re: Group experience with WE BD36 at 48Volts

The dealers tend to just carry the kits, maybe spare brushes. My original dealer tried to help me out when my charger 36v died, but customer service at WE is pathetic. It was about that time I decided to go with 48v and had to buy a new charger anyway.

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