2009 Vectrix VX-1
Glad you got it to run! you will find that estimated range is inaccurate until you ride and it updates. I had a bad pack and it dropped VERY fast after I got away from the house, they are not fun to push BTW. you will probably settle around 20-25 with a tired pack.
VERY nice work BEN I can tell you are happy after all your hard work you never gave up, now all you need is (18) leaf cells and your battery problems will be solved you may have other problems but never a battery glitch again.if you have to open the battery cover do what I did and you wont fight the cover anymore, I cut it with a hacksaw.
I just got the Vectrix titled, licensed, and registered. (Just still needs insurance...)
Amazingly, I had a very good experience at the Department of Motor Vehicles. I managed to be there when there was hardly anyone else. That in itself if pure magic. There are times that I've been there with an hour and a half wait time.
The worst that I came across was the clerk being tentative for a moment on the brand name - she couldn't seem to find it in the computer system at first. She told me to hold on for a minute and then walked away. I was sure that she was going to come back with a manager and that I would get the run-around. Instead, she came back to the desk with a small envelope that obviously had motorcycle plates inside! WHEW!
I walked away with a brand-new title, license plate, and registration sticker. Sometimes the system DOES work!
Happy, happier, happiest :-)
Even here in Germany there can be increadible trouble with registering an electric motorcycle. The last big trouble was with my Swiss understatement vR one: the first two digits of the VIN are supposed to stand for the country of origin. Switzerland not really being home to automobile manufacturers (disregarding Montverdi) however means the digits used by Swiss vehicle VINs are also used by other smaller or non-automotive countries, so my electric scoot was first dubbed an "Opat A. Spol." from the Czech Republic... It took several runs to the Motor Vehicles Department and to my insurance until everything was rectified to the correct "QvR AG". I don't really know what for I gave them the Certificate of Conformity of my bike, as it has everything important on there.
Good thing it worked well for you, Ben!
2017 Zero S ZF6.5 11kW, erider Thunder 5kW
BEN is one happy guy, good for you BEN. enjoy your bike.
Nice job !
I've just bought a non-runner 2011 Vectrix Li today with just 800km.
According to the previous owner it just stalled 2 years ago while driving and was brought back to the dealer.
Some weeks later Vectrix went bankrupt and the bike got unrepaired returned to the owner.
Since then it hasn't been touched until today.
The batterypack was just showing 2V for the whole pack so i've taken out the batteries and started to recharge them in parallel in sets of 10 cells.
Hopefully the pack holds some charge so I can start diagnosing whats wrong with the bike.
In the meantime I have ordered the Peak CAN adapter and also an XDS510 JTAG adapter just in case I need some flashing on the MC.
One question: If I connect a 12V source to the MC on the 'out' connection of the DC-DC converter would that bring the bike and CAN bus to live ?
My contribution to EV in The Netherlands
- Novox C20
- Vectrix VX-1 Li+ my2009 #2791
- Vectrix VX-1 Li my2011 #3228
- CityEl Fact4 / Mini El Cabrio
- Th!nk PIV4 A266
- Th!nk City A306
- Tesla Model3 AWD
I also just got insurance today! Now I'm 100% totally legal for real.
It's supposed to be above freezing this weekend, so maybe I can try it out.
Hi presnel, "Stalled", curious word, What does it mean exactly?
If it had suddently turned off, the charger and ICm may be OK. The problem can be in the main fuse, the encoder or in the MC board.
check the main fuse. If the main fuse is ok, check the wires of the encoder, sometimes one get cut by the nut of the engine spinning on it. If the encoder is ok, use a power supply or a small battery to power on the bike, to check behaviour and find out what's wrong.
Maybe by "stalling" means that one BMS board gave an error and and the program inside the vectrix decided to suddenly stop the bike. In this case you'll have a fully operational Vectrix, replace the battery and BMS with a better system (leaf+Emus). The original lithium cells are unrecoverable, they won't hold much charge.
XDS510 JTAG adapter
The previous owner told me that he was driving and suddenly the bike went dead. No power, no display, nothing, total blackout.
He got hauled by the dealer and thats it.
The story he got from the dealer is that they were waiting for something or some part from the factory but it never came and then they went bankrupt.
He seemed to remember that they couldn't diagnose the bike for some reason and they probably didn't 'close' the software right... strange story to me.
The bike got stored for almost two years so no surprise the batteries where empty. The first set of 10 cells is currently charging since last night and came from 0.2V to 3.4V now, sofar so good.
My first guess was that the DC-DC converter broke down. This would explain the total blackout.
First look at the MC appears to be okay, no burned smell or spots or whatever. Havent had the time to measure IGBT's and such.
Main fuses are ok, both are 200A. Is that standard or are they replaced by the dealer ? can't tell. Seem to have read somewhere that standard fuses were 125A but the bike is a Li version from 2011.
Im thinking of powering the MC from the out port of the DC-DC converter by attaching/soldering a 12V power supply to the outer 2 pins of the DC-DC.
Would that work to power up the electronics ?
Bought the JTAG at ebay.. for $40 :-)
It's been sunny the past couple of days, and the high is supposed to be in the mid 40's (degrees F.)
I might try to ride my Vectrix from where I've been working on it (in my Dad's shop) back to my house. That's a little over 8 miles. My first test ride was less than 5, and everything looked good, but I still have no idea what the real condition of the battery pack is. Roads are looking pretty clear and there's usually not much traffic on a Sunday.
I'm tempted to ride home, with my wife following in her car...
A backup is always a wise thing in uncertain circumstances :-)
I got the cycle home. I didn't even bother having somebody follow me, although I did have my cell phone with, and sort of had somebody lined up to get me if I really had to.
The good news is that I got home. The bad news is that my effective range was SIX MILES - and it was about a 9 mile trip!
Fortunately, the cycle got me to where there was an outlet I could use, so I just ended up charging there for a while.
See the whole story on my blog - http://300mpg.org/?p=4947
HI BEN. Now is the time for leaf conversion, no need to put it off any longer.
I still have a pile of nimh cells in the garage if you need some, but a better way would be leaf cells. To do over again I would have waited and used leaf instead of Lithium, but still enjoy my 50 mile range
Glad you made it home and found a plug, sounds like an adventure
my effective range was SIX MILES - and it was about a 9 mile trip!
Who sells Leaf cells these days AND has some in stock ??
HI PRENSEL, WHERE ARE YOU LOCATED, if in USA (HYBRIDAUTOCENTERR.COM) has them from time to time, you should check their site (1) or (2) times each day because he will have lots oneday and none the next.
Sorry for (2nd.) post, how do you delete the unwanted post?
Best to call them. They may be able to customize an order for you. And inventory may be different from what's on the site.
Just got a quote from HAC but unfortunately shipping lithium overseas is costing a fortune :-)
Too bad we don't have many crashed Leafs yet here in The Netherlands (or Europe)
Check out Norway, they have HEAPS of Leafs, and surely some crashed ones too!
I did another ride yesterday on the Vectrix (Haven't been able to in a week, just because I've been out of town for work.)
On the ride, I made it a full 9 miles this time. It was in town use, mostly 25 mile-per-hour roads, with a one mile stretch of 45 right in front of my house.
The bad news is that I scratched the cycle already. I went to set the bike down on the side stand, only I did NOT have the side-stand down. Pretty much just laid the bike down on its left side in slow motion. I feel SOOOOO stupid. I also hate NOT having the center stand. Those are SO much better for scooters than side stands!
Nothing is damaged except scratches on the plastic body, and my pride.
I'll keep cycling the battery pack and see if I get a little more range out of it, but I am actively looking for some Leaf cells as well.
Ouch, that sure hurts the ego... I also GREATLY prefer the main to the side stand. My ride thankfully has both as standard.
I nearly managed to do that on mine once, I kicked the stand down with my foot but didn't realise that it hadn't stayed fully down.
As I started to lay the bike over onto the side stand it began to roll forward and was starting to lean excessively.
I quickly realised what was happening and instinctively pulled the bike upright again before it went too far.
Upon closer examination, I discovered what had been causing the problem. The allen bolt that the stand pivots on had come loose, and the springs were touching against the protruding head of the bolt preventing them from going "over centre" and pulling the stand to the fully forward "locked down" position.
I had to turn the bolt clockwise five or six turns before it finally started to tighten up, and then I noticed there was also a locking nut on the rear of the stand which would have prevented the bolt from undoing in the first place if it had been correctly tightened during assembly.
It would probably be a lot more secure if the plain locking nut was replaced with a suitable "nyloc" locking nut instead.
I didn't have a suitable nyloc nut to hand, so I simply tightened the bolt and the locking nut nice and snug to ensure it could not come loose again and I have not had any problems with the stand since.
If you own a Vectrix and you are reading this now, I strongly suggest that you check your stand's pivot bolt and make sure that it (and the locking nut on the opposite end) is still nice and tight.
It may not have been responsible for Ben's bike being dropped, but it should help to ensure that you won't experience a similar problem with yours in the future and it could prevent damage like this:
EDIT: Picture links repaired
The allen bolt that the stand pivots on had come loose, and the springs were touching against the protruding head of the bolt preventing them from going "over centre" and pulling the stand to the fully forward "locked down" position.
Yup, exactly the same thing happened to my '07 Vectrix. I noticed it and put a locking nut before I lost the stand on the highway... Mine was too often not opening well and was loose before that.
I found a Nissan Leaf pack from a salvage yard.
I'm a bit cash poor right now, so I CAN purchase it, but if I were to sell part of the pack to somebody else, it would help me keep paying the mortgage and everything else I need money for in my life.
Anyone interested? I should have the pack later this week. I won't be able to get to work tearing it apart right away, but I'm feeling pretty confident since I've taken apart both a Ford Escape Hybrid pack and a Mitsubishi imiev pack.
I also need to figure out what I need for a BMS.
I'd say: sell the extra cells on eBay if you don't get buyers here for full sets. Depending on the condition of the pack and the age of the cells, you should probably break even and with luck hopefully you'll get your own cells for free this way (where it cost me about $2400 with shipping). These cells are in demand for various projects and will sell easily. The cells in the Leaf pack are arranged in several groups - I think one of them is big enough (24 cells?) and you should be able to use the BMS wires and harness from it for the 18 or 19 cell group that you will have in the VX-1. That came pre-packaged for those of us who bought cells from Hybrid Auto Center. But that strip is really a plastic rail that can be cut to length as needed, so you should be able to make one for your project off the original one in the Leaf. The other cells are in smaller groups and you can sell as groups or individually.
Unlike the smaller cells in the Ford battery, the Leaf has 48 large packs, so disassembly (and reassembly) is easier. Check our my thread for lots of instructions and photos. Many people commented there and there are some other threads on Leaf conversions too.
You don't really need a BMS if you initially balance the pack and have a way to monitor it during charge and discharge periodically. You can start this way, then add a BMS later if you get the cash and desire to do it. My pack (and others who have done it without a BMS) seems to stay just about perfectly balanced after many charge/discharge cycles. As long as you are not pushing the limits on fully charging and fully discharging, the only thing that might cause trouble is catastrophic individual cell failure that a BMS will detect, where you might not in time to do something about it.
As for low-cost BMS, I think there are some cheap BMS boards that you can get 2-4 of them to monitor and manage the pack in sections for just a couple of hundred bucks. I don't know how good they are and more importantly if they are reliable (and not cause trouble themselves, like the original VX-1 Li BMS seems to be, on occasion). Another alternative is to have a charge monitor that will stop the charge in case the charger fails to turn off itself (the ESD charger have that bug) - the easiest is a "smart" outlet that can monitor and cutoff the charge - I think someone posted a link to it: you can even turn it on/off remotely from your phone over the internet. Or a timer, which you set based on the charging current and SoC when you plug in, so you are sure the charge will stop before the battery is full (say you have used about 4KWh, so you can time the charge to put back about as much or a bit less to be sure you will not overcharge). With David's firmware update I can set the charging power to be lower or higher, so I have to remember that when setting the timer (I sometimes charge at lower power so that I can use a longer extension cord that is thinner and lighter to carry with me when I travel and need reach to outlets in parking spots that are some distance away from where I can put the bike). My timer is about $20 and works pretty good and can handle up to 15A of current easily (I had it set to top-off 2 NiMh vecrtixes together, once a week, while I was on vacation; they were charging at about half power so together were not much more than 15A). Of course, there are voltage-controlled relays that you can put at the charging plug and turn off the charge when a certain voltage is reached. These too will be less than a $100 bucks.
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