Need a bunch of help.

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garmp
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Need a bunch of help.

I am looking for something to carry my wife & I around a campground. A vehicle that'll carry 370 lbs, yet manageable by a single person. Don't need to go far, nor fast. Maybe from our campsite to the beach and back, to the camp store for a bag of ice, etc. Want to carry it on the back of our van/trailer hitch. We know nothing about electric scooters, moped, bicycles or what ever. That's why I here, asking these questions. What should I watch out for? Heard nothing but horror stories about vehicles made in China. But how do you know? What's good and what's bad, I need a bunch on help!

thanks

Chris V
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Re: Need a bunch of help.

Hi... It would help to know your location and amount you want to invest; however, Vetrix is one of the best EV motor Cycles on the market today- www.vectrix.com/‎ if it is in your budget. The Chinese brands may utilize decent particular parts, but are very unreliable, with NO access to a dealer or support. Check the threads on this Forum and you will see a number of postings that discuss this problem.

Another EV bike worth checking out is ZAPINO- a US dealership ( I assume you are from the US) network makes this vehicle servicable. I think they are now out of business, but they made a good, reliable bike that you can get an excellent deal on now.

Good luck in your search

Chris V

mf70
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Re: Need a bunch of help.

Sorry, I don't have any suggestions for you. Most electric bikes are designed for Asian riders; the average American rider is already at the upper limit. The only models that would operate easily two-up would be full-sized version. These generally have large battery packs, and are HEAVY, more like a Harley than a bicycle. They cost more like a Harley as well.

Frankly, I would suggest a pair of bikes. With a good sturdy set of pannier baskets, you can carry a surprising amount, and they would be MUCH easier to deal with as part of your "kit."

Mark

garmp
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Re: Need a bunch of help.

Thanks for the post. Pretty much leaning toward electric bicycles at this point. My wife saw some where an electric bike/moped called the Jetson that supposedly will carry two adults. We are from St. Louis and there are no dealers any where around here. There out of NY city and I suspect the bike/moped is from china. Would sure like to see one before spending $1,000 plus.
Thanks again and we'll keep on thinking and looking arond on this.

LeftieBiker
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Re: Need a bunch of help.

Those fake "bicycle" scooters aren't going to carry that much weight and survive. Nor is any other electric bicycle. The X-Treme XM3150 scooter should have a weight limit of 350lbs like my XM3000, so it could do it if you were careful. A similar E-Fun (or whatever they are called now) might also work. You didn't really say how large a scooter you can carry, but a ZEV 4000 would easily handle the weight. They have Chinese parts like the other scooters, but are a little more robust. It's larger than the 3150, though...

strawhistle
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Re: Need a bunch of help.

Hi,
There is a company made in the USA called "Current Motor Company" www.currentmotor.com or call 877.222.5115 they have e-mopeds/e-motorcycles that you might be interested in. two people can ride comfortably. LaTeR

thank GOD I wake up above ground !!!!

Derby
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Re: Need a bunch of help.

Actually, Current Motor Company makes an electric Super Scooter. Bigger than a moped and smaller than a motorcycle. Two models vary primarily (only?) by battery pack. The basic model weights 390 pounds and will accept an additional 350 pounds in driver/passenger/cargo for a total of 740 pounds (GVWR). The High Performance Option weighs 40 pounds but has the same GVWR, therefore it will accept only 310 pounds in driver/passenger/cargo for the same total of 740 pounds.

Garmp, can your carrier handle 390 pounds? If so, this basic model might be as good as you'll find although it is still 20 pounds shy of the 370 pound capacity you seek. With your limited and short distance use, you would probably get away with that but I imagine it would be a strain on the frame and suspension. It is an excellent, quality bike, but not cheap.

M.Chen
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Re: Need a bunch of help.

There is not every Chinese scooter so bad experience,main parts of current motor come from China too.

We have more western parts than current motor like Sevcon controllers.....

read http://visforvoltage.org/forum/11326-erider-8000w-scooter-australia-similar-xm5000li and
http://visforvoltage.org/forum/12981-2012-tibet-noah-trip-2100km-4000-5000m-sea-level-tough-road ,you may have some ideas..........

Erider provide 8 years or 50000kms warranty on battery

www.erider.cn

garmp
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Re: Need a bunch of help.

Thanks for all the replies. Derby, I think my carrier could handle the weight, but that much weight/size would be far too much for my wife to handle by herself. The ZEV company looks interesting and will look further into what they have. Next the wife & I will be on a diet to get that total weight down, just to get a smaller scooter. Looks pretty much like the Chinese have cornered the market, especially on economical scooters. Any decent, affordable American products out there. And where can you get a hands on looks at these? Most of the companies I look at have an office or PO Box some where on the east coast. Make it hard for a St Louis guy to actually see a scooter.

thanks again.

Derby
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Re: Need a bunch of help.

I live in Lafayette Indiana. A lot closer than the east coast. If you would like to see a 2011 Current Motor scooter, PM me and we can arrange for you to see mine. It is my understanding that the body of the Current comes from China but not much else. I agree that the bike might be difficult for your wife to handle although the toughest part of handling it for me is setting it on the center stand. This is only needed if you can't use the side stand.

LeftieBiker
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Re: Need a bunch of help.

The guy who runs ZEV talks the company up to the max, but the scooters are a good buy, *if* you understand that they are Chinese sub-assemblies and parts (the motor is designed by and built for ZEV, and is better than most) assembled in the US, not made here. Some of the parts are Crap (I'm on my third flasher unit, and that one has lasted this long because I don't use it, I suspect) and the forks are the same or similar to the other Chinese scooters: if they arrive undamaged and you are lucky, they are adequate, but they are not really high quality units. The rest of the frame is more robust, albeit with more Chinese parts scattered about. The 4000 is probably the best value for price vs performance. Don't be afraid of lead-silicone batteries: they are heavy but perform well and are less troublesome than the lithium packs. My motor and battery pack have had zero problems. I am on my third charger (under warranty) though.

MEroller
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Re: Need a bunch of help.

@Leftie: The ZEV motor is built by Quan Shun, and at least the housing design is also used on the bigger Erider Puma Motor and is of similar power to the ZEV motor.

My rides:
2017 Zero S ZF6.5 11kW, erider Thunder 5kW

LeftieBiker
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Re: Need a bunch of help.

I was told that the motors are assembled in the US by ZEV, and it was at least strongly implied that they are designed by ZEV. That's all I know - that and my experience with the 5000 watt unit (tough and reliable, but not as efficient as the newer one) and the 8500 watt unit (reliable and efficient - it goes about 8MPH faster on the same current on the middle setting). If I wanted I suppose I could replace my reliable-but-annoying controller with a higher output unit, and go fast but not very far. But I'm still trying to find a mechanic to look at the shaking front end before my warranty expires in less than a month...

Johnny J
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Re: Need a bunch of help.

Aren't the ZEV motors supposed to be oil filled/cooled?

MEroller
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Re: Need a bunch of help.

I also had heard about an oil-filling. However, if that really went into production or was only a test to see how much power can be wrung out of 13 inch Quan Shun hardware I do not know. Oil in there would cause considerable hydraulic friction and thus probably more than negate any gain in thermal stability.
The only way to efficiently cool such a hub motor would be to cast water cooling chanels into the aluminum stator carrier and route cooling water through the RH side of the motor axle. That way the heat could be sucked almost directly out of the heat source (the coils around the rim of that carrier) and be effectively transferred OUT of the motor housing.

But we are getting slightly off topic here :-)

My rides:
2017 Zero S ZF6.5 11kW, erider Thunder 5kW

PJD
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Re: Need a bunch of help.

Derby,

As far as I know, the only parts on a Current scooter are not generic-Chinese are the BMS, the BCU, and the rear swing-arm which Current fabricates themselves.

PJD
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Re: Need a bunch of help.

Leftie biker,

The lithium packs are only more troublesome if they does not have a BMS. Also, while having cells fail prematurely was common 4-5 years ago (you always had to buy at least 2-3 more cells than you needed) the quality of Chinese Lithium cells has improved greatly in the past 3 years.

I had nothing but trouble from SLA's - the whole pack would rarely last more than a season before a cell in one of the batteries went bad. When I converted the smaller scooter from "40AH" SLA's to 40AH liFePO4's, usable range went from 18 miles to 35 miles. Lithiums are the only way e-scooters would be practical for me.

LeftieBiker
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Re: Need a bunch of help.

On the other hand, I can get 40 miles without a huge amount of effort from my 40AH lead-silicone pack, and 30-35 miles quite easily. My suggestion to newbies is that if you are going to use a bike daily, or nearly so, get lithium. If you are going to use it less often and for fewer miles, the lead-silicone offers quite adequate performance and range for much, much less money and hassle. As for lithium packs being fine now, I suggest you tell that to the Leaf owners who are losing "bars", and to all the owners of less expensive scooters and E-bikes, some of which have a BMS. I love my Ping 20AH 24V pack, but at the price I paid for it I'd danged well better!

PJD
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Re: Need a bunch of help.

40 miles from a lead acid pack? Get aaaht! - as the bohunks say down here at the crossroads of Appalachia and the Rust Belt.

You rides must be on some pretty flat terrain and moderate speeds.

rockyromero
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Re: Need a bunch of help.

My wife saw some where an electric bike/moped called the Jetson that supposedly will carry two adults.

I'm impressed with what I've seen and read on the Jetson bike and I'm considering buying one soon.

Has anyone else experienced riding the Jetson?

garmp
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Re: Need a bunch of help.

I'm impressed with what I've seen and read on the Jetson bike and I'm considering buying one soon.

Has anyone else experienced riding the Jetson?

Please keep me posted if you do purchase one. My big hangup is that I'd like to see one up close and personal. You know kick the tires so to speak and also to have a service place near by, as I am not very good at repairs & such.

garmp
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Re: Need a bunch of help.

I'm impressed with what I've seen and read on the Jetson bike and I'm considering buying one soon.

Has anyone else experienced riding the Jetson?

Please keep me posted if you do purchase one. My big hangup is that I'd like to see one up close and personal. You know kick the tires so to speak and also to have a service place near by, as I am not very good at repairs & such.

rockyromero
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Re: Need a bunch of help.

My big hangup is that I'd like to see one up close and personal. You know kick the tires so to speak and also to have a service place near by, as I am not very good at repairs & such.

I did go ahead and ordered the Jetson Bike and it's scheduled to arrive in a week. Just in time for the good weather breaking out in Chicago.

I currently own an Ultra Motor Europa eBike and I have been pleased with its performance for the past couple of years.

Prior to that, I did own an X-Treme XB600 and also enjoyed it until it was stolen from me.

At that time, I considered the XB700 Li to replace it because of the lithium batteries. I held off because of the size and weight (over 200 pounds) of the bike. The added cost also made me hesitate.

My attention had turned to the Jetson Bike because of the same speed and battery benefits of the XB700, but without the added bulk. The Jetson bike is almost half the weight at 125 pounds, which translates in a longer riding range. The looks of the Jetson is also more streamlined, with a varied choice of colors.

I found that amazon priced it lower than the main site http://www.jetsonbike.com

http://www.amazon.com/Jetson-Eco-Friendly-Electric-Bike-Silver/dp/B00C7SZTY0/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1397273740&sr=8-1&keywords=J...

For price, looks, functionality, and practicality, the Jetson eBike makes the most sense in an urban setting.

I'll know soon enough.

rockyromero
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Re: Need a bunch of help.

I received the Jetson Bike and it fulfills my expectations.

I took it for a 4 mile spin and it can cruise at 24mph. It has ok pickup, probably the same as the Xtreme XB600 that I used to have.

I'll check out the range of distance somehow. I would feel more comfortable with an extra set of batteries as a backup.

Hopefully, it has the same performance with two riders.

I'll know soon enough.

LeftieBiker
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Re: Need a bunch of help.

I'm afraid the laws of physics will slow the bike a lot with two people on board. Even my 40HP Suzuki 450 slows with a passenger, and it has a much larger reserve of power. Be glad the bike arrived ok and has no obvious flaws.

rockyromero
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Re: Need a bunch of help.

laws of physics will slow the bike a lot with two people on board.

Somehow, my wife is not as excited to ride with me yet. We are both getting into bike riding weight & shape.

Yes, very glad that the bike came ready to ride without any issues or requirements to attach items, besides the mirrors.

This weekend I'll test out a 25 mile round trip ride, with helmet, gloves and sun glasses.

garmp
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Re: Need a bunch of help.

Anxious to hear you pros & cons about two people on the bike.

garmp
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Re: Need a bunch of help.

Anxious to hear you pros & cons about two people on the bike.

rockyromero
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Re: Need a bunch of help.

Anxious to hear you pros & cons about two people on the bike.

First attempt riding two people: my wife said, "bad first impression".

It turns out that my battery was drained as I picked her up from work. We walked home.

I recharged the battery for 5 hours again and it showed that it had a full charge on the display. I rode for 2 miles and the battery drained once more. I have to correct this battery issue before I can go any distance, let alone having another passenger riding with me.

The Jetson Bike looks and rides wonderfully. The Lithion Ion battery is an issue. I had not planned on becoming a battery expert but it seems that I need to solve this puzzle in order to have a pleasant riding experience. Buying another battery at $400 is an option but I still risk the same failures unless I can resolve battery issues as they come up. My other bike, the Europa, also has a shortened battery distance of about 5 miles. I'm starting to think that everyone with an ebike has battery issues and it's a hindrance to popular acceptance.

I'll be reading up on the battery forums.

Does anyone have suggestions for quick learning for a battery neophyte?

PJD
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Re: Need a bunch of help.

Is the battery pack a sealed unit? The first step would be to see if the pack is charging correctly. To determine that, you will need to know the battery chemistry and number of cells, the design cell capacity in amp-hours, and the chargers design amperage. If it is lithium polymer or other type of LiCoO2 cell, the fully charged cell voltage (during the final constant-current stage of charging) is 4.2 volts per cell. If it is a lithium ferrous phosphate type, the fully charged cell voltage is 3.6 to 3.7 volts per cell. If you get the correct voltage at end of charging, you then need to check individual cell voltages to see if the charging is balancing and there are no bad cells - this may be difficult if the pack is a bunch of pouch-cells or cylindrical cell packed together. However it should, or better have, a battery-management circuit board (BMS) in the pack, in which case there will be points to check individual cell voltages (don't short across them!) on the board or wire leads going to it.

The BMS should always be disconnected entirely from the pack before disconnecting any individual cells. Hopefully there is a connector to do this easily.

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

I am frankly getting very tired and angry at the goddamn Chinese, who seem to have unscrupulousness bred in their genes, swindling people who are only trying to "do the right thing" for the planet. Call me a Sino-phobic racist, I don't care.

Sometimes their shoddiness kills people. I recently got back from am engineering conference where a topic was a Chinese-made hydraulic/pneumatic slurry dewatering press at a coal mine preparation plant which failed catastrophically and killed a man and seriously injured another. In the MSHA investigation, multiple serious flaws in design and manufacturing - the steel for the massive hydraulic cylinders having only half the strength that the design required, a technologically obsolete, mechanical pressure limit-switch that stuck on - and other serious design and manufacturing QC defects. Even in the face of this fatal failure of their junk, the manufacturer would not talk to the mining company or MSHA. The mine ultimately re-engineered and modified the machine on their own (just like we do with our Chinese scooters) to return to safe operation.

rockyromero
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Re: Need a bunch of help.

Is the battery pack a sealed unit?

Yes, it's completely sealed and I'll have to unscrew and open up the case.

The first step would be to see if the pack is charging correctly. To determine that, you will need to know the battery chemistry and number of cells, the design cell capacity in amp-hours, and the chargers design amperage.

It's a Li - Ion and here's the link on the specs:

http://www.jetsonbike.com/specs/

TECH SPECS

Vehicle Type: Electric Bicycle
Motor Type: Brushless
Motor Output: 500W

BATTERY

Battery Type: Lithium Battery
Battery Voltage: 48V (12V x 4)
Battery Capacity: 17Ah
Recharge Time: 4-5h
Battery Life: 800 Times Full Charge
Requirements: 110V

may be difficult if the pack is a bunch of pouch-cells or cylindrical cell packed together.

Ok, I'll know when I open it up.

there will be points to check individual cell voltages (don't short across them!) on the board or wire leads going to it.

I don't know what you mean by 'short across them'. I'll have to learn more before I do anything.

The BMS should always be disconnected entirely from the pack before disconnecting any individual cells. Hopefully there is a connector to do this easily.

I'm considering buying a battery balance and charger as mentioned in another thread. I'm way over my head on this and willing to learn and resolve the battery issues as I have no other alternative, short of buying new batteries continuously.

Thanks for your response to this.

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