A possible future for Vectux (Open Source Vectrix)

27 posts / 0 new
Last post
jmap
jmap's picture
Offline
Last seen: 4 years 3 months ago
Joined: Wednesday, September 3, 2008 - 10:30
Points: 340
A possible future for Vectux (Open Source Vectrix)

Well, it seems that Vectrix total failure is imminent, Web sites were all shutdown. Warranties will be lost and spare parts will be very difficult to find in a near future.

Our Vectrix will need repair some day and in that occasion, some of us will forget her and some will try to repair.

For those that want to do the repair, the best chance is try to resolve the problems with the help of Miks' collaborative handbook. Vectux (open source Vectrix) will be more important then ever.

With time it will be inevitable to do a change in the main system. Controller, charger, BMS and batteries should be changed by a better and "open" material. Vectrix has a great structure but without assistance, the "hidden inside technology" must be changed.

The most important on her are the batteries, and these are always getting better. One of the best was announced recently by A123 Systems. The new prismatic batteries have even better capacity that the previous for EVs. They have better energetic density (162 wh/kg) and lower price (45% discount when compared with the actual M1). But there is few information about it yet. The previous M1 are one the best options in the market, yet very expensive. Their characteristics for Vectrix fitting are:

Pack: A123 38s13p - 125.4 volts 29.9 AH;
Weight: About 36 kg;
Volume: 8348 cm3;
Max charge: 136.8 volts;
Min discharge: 106.4 volts;
Recomended charge: 45 minutes at 39 ah /4800 wh;
Recomended fast charge: 15 minutes a 130 ah / 16000 wh;
Continuous Max discharge: 30C ou 900 Ah;
Pulsatory Max discharge : 52C in10 segundos or 1555 Ah;
Life: About 2000 cycles at 2C 100% DOD (Deph Of Discharge), +1000 ciclos at 10C 100% DOD, (in Vectrix, the average will be 2C).

The price of the new ones that will have even better specifications will be about 2700 Euros, that is, about more 900€ that the actual shipped NiMH of the Vectrix and we are talking about one of the best batteries in the market. They are Li-ion and totally safe!

Source of info: novaenergia (in Portuguese).

So, won’t be disappointed with the inevitability. Like we say in Europe for hundreds of years, "The King is dead, long live to the King".

Let's work in a solution to produce a better Vectrix based on the Vectux!

(Let's hope that Mik agrees, he is the most important, competent and dedicated person to reveal Vectrix secrets)

jmap
jmap's picture
Offline
Last seen: 4 years 3 months ago
Joined: Wednesday, September 3, 2008 - 10:30
Points: 340
Re: A possible future for Vectux (Open Source Vectrix)

More info on A123 M1 batteries:



jdh2550_1
jdh2550_1's picture
Offline
Last seen: 6 years 7 months ago
Joined: Tuesday, July 17, 2007 - 09:35
Points: 2335
Re: A possible future for Vectux (Open Source Vectrix)

Current Motor Company (my company) would be happy to work with any Vectrix owner in developing an alternative "open" powertrain for the Vectrix bike. As jmap points out - it's a major undertaking:

With time it will be inevitable to do a change in the main system. Controller, charger, BMS and batteries should be changed by a better and "open" material. Vectrix has a great structure but without assistance, the "hidden inside technology" must be changed

However, the good thing is all that technology is available from other sources. Personally, I'd recommend Thundersky batteries rather than the A123's - but isn't that the beauty of an open system, you can choose your own components. I believe the "hardest" part of that list is likely the controller as it is likely integrates many high level functions along with an AC motor controller. If someone can source a suitable AC motor controller then one could design and produce a "meta-controller" to provide the high level functions.

An alternative might be to "just" replace the charger, BMS and battery pack. However, the controller interfaces into all that as well - so one would have to decide whether to sacrifice some high level functions or figure out how to build an interface between the new sub-systems and the existing controller.

A 40 cell 40Ah TS LFP pack would be a close replacement for the NiMH. At today's prices it would cost: 40 * 40 * $1.75 = $2800 USD. Charger and BMS would cost another $500 or so. The TS's are good for 3C discharge continuous, 10C peak. With a good, per-cell BMS and an 80% DOD the pack will be good for 2000 cycles.

If someone wants to take on this project then drop me a line and we can figure out how to work together and if there's a way CuMoCo can support you with parts at cost and helping to "productionize" the solution.

Good luck! There's 3,000 Vectrii out there counting on you...

John H. Founder of Current Motor Company - opinions on this site belong to me; not to my employer
Remember: " 'lectric for local. diesel for distance" - JTH, Amp Bros || "No Gas.

jmap
jmap's picture
Offline
Last seen: 4 years 3 months ago
Joined: Wednesday, September 3, 2008 - 10:30
Points: 340
Re: A possible future for Vectux (Open Source Vectrix)

I'm not an expert about batteries but I listen who is. It seems that Thundersky are the most common option and have the biggest sells but the quality, when compared with A123, is lower. I agree in everything else. For now, I will protect my batteries long as I can and I still have a small hope of reaching 80000km. No matter what it happens, the Vectrix community should get a stable configuration, just in case. This can be an good job opportunity for who have the technical abilities. Vectrix is still the best bike out there but without assistance I won't recommend it.

reikiman
reikiman's picture
Offline
Last seen: 1 year 7 months ago
Joined: Sunday, November 19, 2006 - 17:52
Points: 8447
Re: A possible future for Vectux (Open Source Vectrix)

This is cool, and I'm excited to see this direction being taken.

A couple points:-

a) You can't correctly call this an "open source vectrix" because you'll never own the Vectrix design. The Vectrix corporation owns the technology and it's part of their corporate assets which are surely going to be shopped around for other companies to buy.

b) What you can do is called "reverse engineering" and document what you learn in clean room reverse engineering. Some of y'all (e.g. Mik) are already doing this.

c) "Open source" means anybody can make copies, redistribute copies, redistribute modified copies, and make products. e.g. the documentation you collect & create could potentially be used by multiple companies to make products.

d) It's best for the documentation to be published over in the handbook area that Mik has been maintaining.

- David Herron, The Long Tail Pipe, davidherron.com, 7gen.com, What is Reiki
- Electrified Electra To

jmap
jmap's picture
Offline
Last seen: 4 years 3 months ago
Joined: Wednesday, September 3, 2008 - 10:30
Points: 340
Re: A possible future for Vectux (Open Source Vectrix)

This is cool, and I'm excited to see this direction being taken.

A couple points:-

a) You can't correctly call this an "open source vectrix" because you'll never own the Vectrix design. The Vectrix corporation owns the technology and it's part of their corporate assets which are surely going to be shopped around for other companies to buy.

b) What you can do is called "reverse engineering" and document what you learn in clean room reverse engineering. Some of y'all (e.g. Mik) are already doing this.

c) "Open source" means anybody can make copies, redistribute copies, redistribute modified copies, and make products. e.g. the documentation you collect & create could potentially be used by multiple companies to make products.

d) It's best for the documentation to be published over in the handbook area that Mik has been maintaining.

Yeah, but you can call it Vectux :-). The open source term is just to people understand.
Mik is the best reversed engineer ;-). A big hurray to his work! I hope that he continues to do that!

antiscab
Offline
Last seen: 1 week 1 day ago
Joined: Saturday, July 7, 2007 - 23:55
Points: 1686
Re: A possible future for Vectux (Open Source Vectrix)

A 40 cell 40Ah TS LFP pack would be a close replacement for the NiMH. At today's prices it would cost: 40 * 40 * $1.75 = $2800 USD. Charger and BMS would cost another $500 or so. The TS's are good for 3C discharge continuous, 10C peak. With a good, per-cell BMS and an 80% DOD the pack will be good for 2000 cycles.

TS idea of "continuous" is 20sec, 0.3C is the actual continuous rating.
the 10C rating is for approx 20ms.

when around 20 deg C, a TS cell around 80% charged(SOC) will sag by 0.2v per C, so 40A out of a 40AH cell and you get 3v.
lower sag for higher temp, higher sag for lower temp.

so to supply the 250A the vectrix draws on a hard acceleration, you really need at least 60AH, if using TS battteries.

Matt

Daily Ride:
2007 Vectrix, modified with 42 x Thundersky 60Ah
Vectrix 60Ah Lithium Tyres Fuel Registration Insurance cycle analyst 2 x TC Charger & MC
conversion

AndY1
AndY1's picture
Offline
Last seen: 6 years 5 months ago
Joined: Tuesday, June 17, 2008 - 04:29
Points: 1071
Re: A possible future for Vectux (Open Source Vectrix)

Ok, I've mentioned it a few times and I will mention it again.

Kokam LiPO 40Ah High Power Cell 5C Continuous(200A) and 10C Pulse - Page 10: http://www.kokamamerica.com/kokam_catalog.pdf
It's width is perfect for Vectrix' battery bay. 38 of these LiPos are perfect combo for Vectrix. At full Vectrix charge (152V-153V cut-off), they charge to 4V/cell and at full Vectrix discharge cut-off at 125V it's 3.29V/cell. They are half the weight of NiMH battery and with the use of proper balancer(s), they could be charged with Vectrix' charger.
They could be set up as sheets, with space between them, so they could be cooled by the battery fans.

What is your opinion of those?

antiscab
Offline
Last seen: 1 week 1 day ago
Joined: Saturday, July 7, 2007 - 23:55
Points: 1686
Re: A possible future for Vectux (Open Source Vectrix)

kokams are still lithium cobalt.
so service life wont be any better than the original Ni-Mh batteries.

power density is up to the task though, so there shouldnt be any undue premature failure, i just prefer batteries with longer service life.

personally, if i were in your situation (which im not really, but anyway) id either use:
a full pack of headway 10AH cells (or any other high output cells)
or use a pack of TS60AH cells (or similar)
or use a pack of TS40AH cells and a couple strings of A123 M1s

while you are putting a different pack in, you might want to look into bumping up the traction pack voltage for a higher top speed (unless its artificially limited to 100kmh?)

Might want to have a look to see what the powerstage of the controller is rated to.

Matt

Daily Ride:
2007 Vectrix, modified with 42 x Thundersky 60Ah
Vectrix 60Ah Lithium Tyres Fuel Registration Insurance cycle analyst 2 x TC Charger & MC
conversion

AndY1
AndY1's picture
Offline
Last seen: 6 years 5 months ago
Joined: Tuesday, June 17, 2008 - 04:29
Points: 1071
Re: A possible future for Vectux (Open Source Vectrix)

I checked ThunderSky batteries, but they wouldn't all fit in the battery bay.

kevin smith
kevin smith's picture
Offline
Last seen: 5 years 4 months ago
Joined: Monday, December 29, 2008 - 04:57
Points: 446
Re: A possible future for Vectux (Open Source Vectrix)

hi dear sir i have a vectrix and love it .apart from the odd nigel hear and there.
well in one of my old blogs i have said about a biker build off as i have some great ideas.
about building a ev scooter that would think nothing of 100 miles range as it would be solar powerd and wind powerd and super light and
hay even have a tiny 50cc 4stroke engine
and be peddal powerd .??
what you think kev.

jmap
jmap's picture
Offline
Last seen: 4 years 3 months ago
Joined: Wednesday, September 3, 2008 - 10:30
Points: 340
Re: A possible future for Vectux (Open Source Vectrix)

hi dear sir i have a vectrix and love it .apart from the odd nigel hear and there.
well in one of my old blogs i have said about a biker build off as i have some great ideas.
about building a ev scooter that would think nothing of 100 miles range as it would be solar powerd and wind powerd and super light and
hay even have a tiny 50cc 4stroke engine
and be peddal powerd .??
what you think kev.

It sounds nice, but it is another kind of bike...

kevin smith
kevin smith's picture
Offline
Last seen: 5 years 4 months ago
Joined: Monday, December 29, 2008 - 04:57
Points: 446
Re: A possible future for Vectux (Open Source Vectrix)

you all may see the scooter nex yer just have to
wait...thanks kev its not a pipe dream .

jmap
jmap's picture
Offline
Last seen: 4 years 3 months ago
Joined: Wednesday, September 3, 2008 - 10:30
Points: 340
Re: A possible future for Vectux (Open Source Vectrix)

hi dear sir i have a vectrix and love it .apart from the odd nigel hear and there.
well in one of my old blogs i have said about a biker build off as i have some great ideas.
about building a ev scooter that would think nothing of 100 miles range as it would be solar powerd and wind powerd and super light and
hay even have a tiny 50cc 4stroke engine
and be peddal powerd .??
what you think kev.

I Think you would like one of these:



The Fuel Cell Vectrix Prototype... A good project...

fost5097
Offline
Last seen: 7 years 8 months ago
Joined: Friday, July 17, 2009 - 15:08
Points: 18
Re: A possible future for Vectux (Open Source Vectrix)

Not all websites are down. I had my first Vectrix service yesterday and the tech hooked up a cable to his computer and uploaded the data dump from my machine to a Vectrix service site. He had to put in my VIN number for it to go thru. This is hope, althought slight.

NJSteve
Offline
Last seen: 10 years 2 weeks ago
Joined: Wednesday, July 29, 2009 - 20:12
Points: 55
Re: A possible future for Vectux (Open Source Vectrix)

I think all this talk about different batteries, etc is just a pipe dream. If you look closely, the Vectrix is really built around the stock battery pack. I mean the frame is really the battery box. The battery box is engineered to fit the batteries and at the same time act as an air plenum and take in air from the front and flow it around the batteries to cool them. I think any battery solution would need to start with the exact same physically sized battery and method of connection, or else you are going to have to reengineer all of this again. Possibly with lithium batteries you might have extra space that would allow you to work, but that is doubtful at best since supposedly Vectrix spent 5 million unsuccessfully trying to make it happen.

And all this doesn't even take into account the way the battery system integrate with the rest of the Vectrix's computer systems. This isn't like a car where you just take out a battery and put in another one. Physically mounting and fitting a new battery is just the start of the issues you are going to have to deal with concerning a different battery system.

Anyway, no one is going to try this route until their Vectrix is junk anyway which is probably a few years off. Ultimately, I think we will be stuck replacing the batteries with identically sized ones from either GP or a different manufacturer who steps in to make them.

I think if you are looking to modify this thing for better performance, etc, I think the way will be to look to add extra batteries under the seat or elsewhere where you just supplement the current system.

However, if someone doesn't buy the IP rights from Vectrix, I do think the software will need to get hacked and become an open source project and available for modification, etc. But ultimately I think there will be a buyer, so this won't happen, at least not out in the open.

Anyway, just my two cents on this replacement battery issue.

Sandy
Offline
Last seen: 4 years 3 months ago
Joined: Tuesday, December 16, 2008 - 14:48
Points: 13
Re: A possible future for Vectux (Open Source Vectrix)

Antiscab says that to provide the 250 amperes that the Vectrix draws on hard acceleration...... What 250 amperes is this? There is a fuse of around a 120Amperes, exactly how does the Vectrix get 250Amperes through this fuse without it blowing?

More realistically, while the motor CAN draw 250 amperes, the motor current in the Vectrix is limited to less than 120 amperes and even that level of current corresponds to some 16KiloWatts or 21Hp.

jmap
jmap's picture
Offline
Last seen: 4 years 3 months ago
Joined: Wednesday, September 3, 2008 - 10:30
Points: 340
Re: A possible future for Vectux (Open Source Vectrix)

I think all this talk about different batteries, etc is just a pipe dream. If you look closely, the Vectrix is really built around the stock battery pack. I mean the frame is really the battery box. The battery box is engineered to fit the batteries and at the same time act as an air plenum and take in air from the front and flow it around the batteries to cool them. I think any battery solution would need to start with the exact same physically sized battery and method of connection, or else you are going to have to reengineer all of this again. Possibly with lithium batteries you might have extra space that would allow you to work, but that is doubtful at best since supposedly Vectrix spent 5 million unsuccessfully trying to make it happen.

And all this doesn't even take into account the way the battery system integrate with the rest of the Vectrix's computer systems. This isn't like a car where you just take out a battery and put in another one. Physically mounting and fitting a new battery is just the start of the issues you are going to have to deal with concerning a different battery system.

Anyway, no one is going to try this route until their Vectrix is junk anyway which is probably a few years off. Ultimately, I think we will be stuck replacing the batteries with identically sized ones from either GP or a different manufacturer who steps in to make them.

I think if you are looking to modify this thing for better performance, etc, I think the way will be to look to add extra batteries under the seat or elsewhere where you just supplement the current system.

However, if someone doesn't buy the IP rights from Vectrix, I do think the software will need to get hacked and become an open source project and available for modification, etc. But ultimately I think there will be a buyer, so this won't happen, at least not out in the open.

Anyway, just my two cents on this replacement battery issue.

I totally agree. Let's have some hope in the future and dedication of Vectrix owners.

antiscab
Offline
Last seen: 1 week 1 day ago
Joined: Saturday, July 7, 2007 - 23:55
Points: 1686
Re: A possible future for Vectux (Open Source Vectrix)

you can put 250A through a 120A fuse for quite some time before it will blow.

easiest way to find out is for someone to put a clamp meter on one of the battery lines, measure current and accelerate hard at the same time.
i got the 250A wrong btw, according to the vectrix specifications, its actually 275A.

the fuse in the vectrix is probably a slow blow variety, since the only time it should ever blow is when parts around it have already failed.
In the traction circuit, a fuse isn't there to protect the electronics, or even some of the wiring.
its there so that when things go wrong, you dont end up with a fireball.

Matt

Daily Ride:
2007 Vectrix, modified with 42 x Thundersky 60Ah
Vectrix 60Ah Lithium Tyres Fuel Registration Insurance cycle analyst 2 x TC Charger & MC
conversion

X Vectrix
Offline
Last seen: 7 months 2 weeks ago
Joined: Tuesday, August 4, 2009 - 05:20
Points: 298
Re: A possible future for Vectux (Open Source Vectrix)

The motor current is limited to 375A peak in each phase. This is roughly 265Arms. This is pretty short lived though once the motor starts spinning and the BEMF kicks in. On flat ground with no head wind the battery provides about 60 amps at top speed.

Mik
Mik's picture
Offline
Last seen: 3 years 8 months ago
Joined: Tuesday, December 11, 2007 - 15:27
Points: 3739
Re: A possible future for Vectux (Open Source Vectrix)

The motor current is limited to 375A peak in each phase. This is roughly 265Arms. This is pretty short lived though once the motor starts spinning and the BEMF kicks in. On flat ground with no head wind the battery provides about 60 amps at top speed.

How does this relate to the 218A reported by the CANBUS?

.
00 00 01 00 09 00 83 09= 1km/h; 131V; 9A; = 1.179kW (00F00300: C5 02 14 30 C7 D1 00 A1)
00 00 0C 00 3A 00 7E 3A= 12km/h; 126V; 58A; = 7.308kW @ full throttle , ~2.5s after start (00F00300: 42 03 14 30 45 17 00 E7) = LAME OFF THE LINE!
00 00 14 00 4F 00 7D 4F= 20km/h; 79A; 125V; = 9.875kW
00 00 1D 00 69 00 7A 69= 29km/h ; 105A; 122V; =12.81kW
00 00 28 00 88 00 77 88= 40km/h; 136A; 119V; =16.184kW
00 00 32 00 A5 00 73 A5= 50km/h; 165A; 115V; =18.975kW
00 00 3C 00 C3 00 70 C = 60km/h; 195A; 112V; =21.84kW
00 00 46 00 D4 00 6D D4= 70km/h; 212A; 109V; =23.108kW
00 00 4C 00 DA 00 6C DA= 76km/h; 218A; 108V; = 23.544kW (00F00300= 4A 03 12 30 4D 46 00 16)=PEAK POWER
00 00 50 00 D6 00 6C D6= 80km/h; 214A; 108V; =23.112kW
00 00 5A 00 C0 00 6E C0= 90km/h; 192A; 110V; =21.121kW
00 00 64 00 BF 00 6D BF= 100km/h; 191A; 109V; =20.819kW
00 00 65 00 B9 00 6E B9= 101km/h; 185A; 110V; = 20.35kW
00 00 67 00 5D 00 76 5D= 103km/h; 93A; 118V; =10.974kW
00 00 66 00 3E 00 79 3E= 102km/h; 62A; 121V; = 9.559kW
00 00 66 00 57 00 77 57= 102km/h; 87A; 119V; = 10.353kW

.

See: http://visforvoltage.org/book/ev-collaborative-hand-books/6916#comment-40025 for details

This information may be used entirely at your own risk.

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

X Vectrix
Offline
Last seen: 7 months 2 weeks ago
Joined: Tuesday, August 4, 2009 - 05:20
Points: 298
Re: A possible future for Vectux (Open Source Vectrix)

The current you are looking at on the CANbus is the integrated battery current. This is battery current integrated at 15khz, so it is the true sum of all the current flowing from the battery but it is reported on the CANbus at 1Hz. Since the battery is feeding the IGBT at 15Khz you will not see the current spikes on the CANbus, its happening way too fast. Its these current spikes that are smoothed out by the motor (a big inductor). The motor current (phase current) is maximum at 0 rpm when the windings are basically a dead short. At full throttle from 0mph the phase current is maximum then begins to taper off, the bus current peaks about 3500 rpm or so.
The rate at which phase current increases and the maximum current are controlled, otherwise the IGBT would fry. Uncontrolled you could burn rubber...but only once!

Paul
Offline
Last seen: 7 years 2 weeks ago
Joined: Monday, March 24, 2008 - 23:05
Points: 104
Re: A possible future for Vectux (Open Source Vectrix)

Hey X Vectrix, you seem to know your stuff. Keep up the good technical posts!
Most appreciated.

Paul

Mik
Mik's picture
Offline
Last seen: 3 years 8 months ago
Joined: Tuesday, December 11, 2007 - 15:27
Points: 3739
Re: A possible future for Vectux (Open Source Vectrix)

The current you are looking at on the CANbus is the integrated battery current.
...

Thank you very much!

This information may be used entirely at your own risk.

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

jmap
jmap's picture
Offline
Last seen: 4 years 3 months ago
Joined: Wednesday, September 3, 2008 - 10:30
Points: 340
Re: A possible future for Vectux (Open Source Vectrix)

It seems that you have superior knowledge on this. Thank you very much for sharing it with us!

NJSteve
Offline
Last seen: 10 years 2 weeks ago
Joined: Wednesday, July 29, 2009 - 20:12
Points: 55
Re: A possible future for Vectux (Open Source Vectrix)

Hey X Vectrix, you seem to know your stuff. Keep up the good technical posts!
Most appreciated.

And I also totally agree. Thanks

jdh2550_1
jdh2550_1's picture
Offline
Last seen: 6 years 7 months ago
Joined: Tuesday, July 17, 2007 - 09:35
Points: 2335
Re: A possible future for Vectux (Open Source Vectrix)
Hey X Vectrix, you seem to know your stuff. Keep up the good technical posts!
Most appreciated.

And I also totally agree. Thanks

Perhaps X Vectrix is in fact really an ex-Vectrix engineer? I certainly hope so and I hope s/he continues to post.

John H. Founder of Current Motor Company - opinions on this site belong to me; not to my employer
Remember: " 'lectric for local. diesel for distance" - JTH, Amp Bros || "No Gas.

Log in or register to post comments


Who's online

There are currently 0 users online.

Who's new

  • ericaturner
  • 2008VectrixForSale
  • flapjacksbestof
  • incomefun
  • marcpoel

Customize This