zipping around the neighborhood

nasukaren's picture

Phoenix ESC arrived and Boxer is happily boxing!

My replacement ESC from Castle Creations (the Phoenix HV-110A) finally arrived today, along with a Castle Creations USB programmer for it. The Phoenix HV-110A is considerably beefier than the ELF controller that I burned out. I reprogrammed the Phoenix using the very nice USB programmer (notably: BRAKING off) and installed it onto my Piaggio.

If you have the right QuickTime codec installed, you can watch a very boring video of my biking revving up to speed.

Yes, that is indeed duct tape holding the motor wires and everything else together. My anderson powerpoles will arrive on Monday....

On the road, the moped ran just great, with a maximum speed of 20 kph (15 mph) as predicted by the voltage * kV (24V * 130 kV) of the motor. I also very quickly tripped the 30 amp fuse that was protecting the batteries. Luckily I had bought a whole pack of 30A fuses and had them in my pocket. I decided to go to a higher voltage as that would increase my top speed as well as lower the max amps drawn at the same speed.

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I wanted a bit more speed so I wired up the RC racing NiMH packs that I had gotten into a single pack: 9.6V 3800 mAH packs * 4 == 38.4V 3800 mAh megapack and plugged that into the system.

With 38.4V, my top speed increased to 30 kph (20 mph) and -- more importantly -- I could get to this top speed with popping the 30 amp battery fuse. However, if I tried to go up a steep hill, I would pop the fuse. I need to wire two 30 amps in parallel to get 60 amps -- or put in a 60 ~ 90 amp circuit breaker.

The ESC definitely got warm, in the high 30C range (90-120F). I think I will use active cooling for it. I have some CPU fans that I got at clearance that should do the trick. The motor barely broke a sweat, I do not think I will need to do much in the way of cooling it.

The moped was definitely a lot of fun zipping around the neighborhood with it.

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It got dark so testing was over for today. I spent the night rewiring the ESC into the test-box for my low-voltage systems and put a big CPU fan on all of it.

All in all, very very exciting. All that remains is to get some more NiMH packs and wire them in a 3P 4S configuration to get a 38.4 V 11.4 Ah pack. This should be enough to get me to work with a comfortable margin to spare.

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