new vectrix maxi

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Brutus
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new vectrix maxi

Greetings - just bought a new Vectrix Maxi - 60km on the speedo, it will be delivered this Friday. I am in Victoria, Australia.

I have read through some of this forum and now know that it probably won't be as simple as jumping on it and riding it. I've read about different firmware versions, programming leads & software etc - I have to say it is daunting and confusing at this stage.

I was wondering if some kind Vectrix owner could summarise for me what I should do to maximise battery life & range - my hope is that this will tide me over until a commercial lithium upgrade is available and viable.

I also read there is a fuse which should be upgraded - how can I access that to check that mine has been upgraded.

thanks in anticipation - Brutus

Aircon
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Re: new vectrix maxi

Greetings - just bought a new Vectrix Maxi - 60km on the speedo, it will be delivered this Friday. I am in Victoria, Australia.

I have read through some of this forum and now know that it probably won't be as simple as jumping on it and riding it. I've read about different firmware versions, programming leads & software etc - I have to say it is daunting and confusing at this stage.

I was wondering if some kind Vectrix owner could summarise for me what I should do to maximise battery life & range - my hope is that this will tide me over until a commercial lithium upgrade is available and viable.

I also read there is a fuse which should be upgraded - how can I access that to check that mine has been upgraded.

thanks in anticipation - Brutus

where in vic? I'm in toorak. we can meet up and compare notes! Did you get it on ebay from Charles?

Mik
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Re: new vectrix maxi

I would find someone to give the battery a long, slow equalisation charge before riding the scooter.

This information may be used entirely at your own risk.

There is always a way if there is no other way!

Brutus
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Re: new vectrix maxi

Bendigo unfortunately -might be beyond my range! yes, from Charles.

Brutus
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Re: new vectrix maxi

that must require specialised equipment? I have an RC charger with equalisation, but it's limited to 6S (lipo). Well below the voltage required here. It sounds as though the chap I'm getting it from has charged it - he measured each cell individually, and the voltages were all good.

AndY1
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Re: new vectrix maxi

Make sure you have the latest firmware installed:

You can check it by turning on the bike, turning off the kill switch and pulling the left brake. The speedometer needle should show about 42-43km/h and the left LCD display should show the battery temperature and Voltage. If it doesn't show the last two things, than it's loaded with pre-october 2008 firmware, which will surely destroy your battery pack.

Latest firmware is a must!

And carefully read the first post in this thread: http://visforvoltage.org/forum/7912-nimh-battery-problems-and-cures

R
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Re: new vectrix maxi

Wellcome!!

I also read there is a fuse which should be upgraded - how can I access that to check that mine has been upgraded.

Please tell us the serial number and date of build, printed on a white label behind the fork, on the front side of the battery compartment.
Mik
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Re: new vectrix maxi

It sounds as though the chap I'm getting it from has charged it - he measured each cell individually, and the voltages were all good.

....Da schweigt des Sängers Höflichkeit!

This information may be used entirely at your own risk.

There is always a way if there is no other way!

Brutus
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Re: new vectrix maxi

I shall do as soon as it arrives. cheers

Brutus
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Range anxiety

Sorry, been busy for a while.
My Vectrix VIN is SZCAASRW2WAA01533.

Took the Vectrix for registration today - left about 10 mins early - we live at the top of a hill - the battery indicated full minus 1 bar - when I got to the bottom of the hill, I powered on - the bars dropped to 2 and there wasn't any power there. Pushed it back up the hill, plugged in for 20mins then limped the 8kms to VicRoads. They have a wonderful system where you pay for the priveledge of meeting them, and pay extra if you have to change the time. Having said that, once you get there, they are good people.

My bike was on zero charge after the inspection - they let me drive it into the building and plug it into a power point - I sat reading magazines for half an hour. Then on the way home, the battery light and the spanner both flashed whenever I powered on.

I did buy it for work - but my main job is a 22km hilly round trip - I'm just unsure if I will make it. I was at my second job today which is about 6kms away - I was able to plug it in there - it said 28mi when I left to come home, then 12mi by the time I got home.

I would dearly love to upgrade to LiFePO4 but my experience from radio control planes tells me that the charger, controller and BMS would all need to be changed - and simply swapping NiMH out for LiFe cells without connections for the various sensors would likely play havoc with warning messages etc.

I think what I'll do is a full charge tonight, drive to work tomorrow and just see what my range is. It's going to be fairly inconvenient to run out en route though.
Yes, I have range anxiety.

Brutus
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Re: new vectrix maxi

Is it normal during charging for the LCD screens to go completely blank for periods, with the fans still going? When this happens, the voltage is showing 151, the temp is about 25C and the bars just above half full.

AndY1
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Re: new vectrix maxi

Yes, it does that during TR periods and I think during CO - cooling periods. You can still check the status by turning the bike on with the key.

mikemitbike
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Re: new vectrix maxi

Is it normal during charging for the LCD screens to go completely blank for periods, with the fans still going? When this happens, the voltage is showing 151, the temp is about 25C and the bars just above half full.

Hi Brutus,
I might be the pessimist here on the forum, but 151V with only half of the battery charged sounds not good.
Did the bike charge to full and how high did your batterytemp rise? As the screens turned off during the
TR-phaseof charging you should have the newer firmware and able to check temp and voltage. Activate the kill
switch and pull the left brake. The speedo should show ~40Kmh and on left display you should see temp and
voltage of the battery. I recomend to check the temperature of the battery during your next ride and the
charge. It should stay about 2 or 3 degrees above ambient temperature. If it starts to rise very quickly
(example: ambient 25°C, batt 28°C, after some riding battery half full rising to 35°C Voltgage above 130V
and temp or Battery temptale turn on) your battery might be defective. If temperature keeps at normal
parameters you might be lucky and your battery-gauge is just heavy out of sync.

Crossing fingers Mike

Brutus
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Re: new vectrix maxi
Is it normal during charging for the LCD screens to go completely blank for periods, with the fans still going? When this happens, the voltage is showing 151, the temp is about 25C and the bars just above half full.

Hi Brutus,
I might be the pessimist here on the forum, but 151V with only half of the battery charged sounds not good.
Did the bike charge to full and how high did your batterytemp rise? As the screens turned off during the
TR-phaseof charging you should have the newer firmware and able to check temp and voltage. Activate the kill
switch and pull the left brake. The speedo should show ~40Kmh and on left display you should see temp and
voltage of the battery. I recomend to check the temperature of the battery during your next ride and the
charge. It should stay about 2 or 3 degrees above ambient temperature. If it starts to rise very quickly
(example: ambient 25°C, batt 28°C, after some riding battery half full rising to 35°C Voltgage above 130V
and temp or Battery temptale turn on) your battery might be defective. If temperature keeps at normal
parameters you might be lucky and your battery-gauge is just heavy out of sync.

From what I've read, you're the legend, not the pessimist. I've looked at a lot of your posts about identifying bad cells etc. I must be pessimistic myself to think that will come in useful for me. What software do you use to analyse your batteries - do you have a charger with usb connection or datalogger?

I will take note of temp tomorrow and keep my fingers crossed too.
Cheers, Bruce.
Crossing fingers Mike

R
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Re: new vectrix maxi

My Vectrix VIN is SZCAASRW2WAA01533.

Old VIN system
Silver
World model
September 2007

1- The bike probably has 125A Fuse. Consider upgrading to 200A.
2- Make sure you have the 3001 revision in the charger.

Is it normal during charging for the LCD screens to go completely blank for periods, with the fans still going?

It's normal, Cooling phase, or Transition phase. Turn on the key and check out the charging program, (CO)(TR)

BUT it is not normal 151v at half charge. 151v Is full charge. Maybe the display gauge is out of sync, or the battery is damaged.
to sync the gauge: empty the battery to red light. Careful: Do not drive it over a km, avoid going uphill, and avoid full accelerate with the red light!
before plugging, check voltage and temperature.

Then Perform a controlled charge (a Picture of the display every 30 minutes, if possible?). If at half charge it reaches again 150 V interrupt the charge and report here..
Hope this helps...

By the way, tomorrow the local dealer will receive my new battery. It will be replaced under warranty... Superb Spanish dealer, it's the best....

Mik
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Re: new vectrix maxi

...
...

BUT it is not normal 151v at half charge. 151v Is full charge. Maybe the display gauge is out of sync, or the battery is damaged.
to sync the gauge: empty the battery to red light. Careful: Do not drive it over a km, avoid going uphill, and avoid full accelerate with the red light!
before plugging, check voltage and temperature....
...

It's because this is a "Recharge after BALPOR".

The battery needs to be equalised before riding. Riding it to the red light is the opposite of doing an EQ charge first.

If you have no means of doing a proper EQ charge, then ride the bike gently for short distances only, until it does an EQ charge (after maybe 10hrs of riding -but it might do one straight away after a BALPOR with the new software, I don't know.

This information may be used entirely at your own risk.

There is always a way if there is no other way!

Mik
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Re: new vectrix maxi
It sounds as though the chap I'm getting it from has charged it - he measured each cell individually, and the voltages were all good.

....Da schweigt des Sängers Höflichkeit!

See? He charged it really well....

If he really measured the voltage of each cell, then you might be in trouble: To do this, the battery needs to be dismantled and then put together again. That's something not everyone is quite up to.

This information may be used entirely at your own risk.

There is always a way if there is no other way!

Brutus
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Re: new vectrix maxi

Good day chaps - charged last night - though it turned off 2 bars shy of full. Rode to work, then at lunch time went to the hardware store. Had to visit a patient in a nursing home on the way home - then stopped off at the bottle shop in the city - then home - was still reading half full and 30kms. There's a big hill behind us, the circuit up and down the other side is about 10kms - so I set off up the hill - then regen'd down the other side. By the bottom, the range was reading 48kms. Then back home with a big hill up to the house. By the bottom of that hill I was down to 3 bars and 15kms indicated, but no warning lamps and full power available.

I have to admit I did baby the bike today. It's actually hard to do - when blokes in their hyundais see what they assume is a lame scooter and try to drag off from the lights to get in front of you - it's hard to restrain yourself. Twenty years ago I couldn't have.

R. didn't read your message until just now - oops.

At any rate, I'm really pleased with how it went today and I'm confident that I can do the return trip to work without babying it and make the distance comfortably.

Sounds as though I will have to address the fuse though - looking at the bike, I have NO idea how to dismantle it, or where the fuse is located - or what sort of fuse to use. Is their a repair/service manual available? There's a fair voltage in there - what's the safest way to avoid a sting from it?

All the help is much appreciated - Brutus

Brutus
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Re: new vectrix maxi

Greetings again.
Well, I've done about 800kms now - but with summer just starting I'm not likely to ride it much for a few months as I don't wish to stress the batteries.
I find the vectrix fantastic for in town - it is reliable for my 22km round trip commute to work. My mum lives about 20km out of town - when new I did get there and back on a charge, but crawled along the open highway at 60kmph - have since tried it twice at more reasonable speed and I wasn't prepared to risk the return trip without a topup. My mum generates her own solar electricity, so it was a thrill to charge up using truly renewable power.

All in all, I'm really pleased with the Vectrix for short commutes in town. I can shop in the central city and park wherever Ilike, and carry most of what I want to. If this bike had a more reasonable range it would be a godsend. Having got back onto two wheels, I'm tempted now to buy a IC engined scooter so that range is not an issue. After summer, and if the battery behaves, I should quickly get my kms up and will update with my experiences.
cheers -

Mik
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Re: new vectrix maxi

With just a 22km round trip you could probably ride it through most of summer, without stressing the battery much.

But only if you have a parking spot out of the midday heat - that goes for work and at home, of course.

You could charge from 0400am for 1h:10min each workday, keeping the SOC between 30% and 80% easily.

Always charge just before riding it - that way you know that the charge is in the battery, not lost to self-discharge.

An ABCool and a couple of timers is all you need.

This information may be used entirely at your own risk.

There is always a way if there is no other way!

Brutus
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Re: new vectrix maxi

Mik - at the risk of seeming dumb, what is SOC and what is an ABCool? with thanks, Bruce

R
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Re: new vectrix maxi

Mik - at the risk of seeming dumb, what is SOC and what is an ABCool? with thanks, Bruce

Bruce, Wellcome to mik's world.
I'm glad your vectrix is doing fine.

Mik
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Re: new vectrix maxi

Mik - at the risk of seeming dumb, what is SOC and what is an ABCool? with thanks, Bruce

SOC stands for "State of Charge" and ABCool for Auxiliary Battery Cooling System. Details here: http://visforvoltage.org/forum/7471-abcool-40-vectrix-auxiliary-battery-cooling-system

This information may be used entirely at your own risk.

There is always a way if there is no other way!

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