REVIEW PART 1 of 2
Preamble: It should be noted that I spent all day in the hot sun loading and then unloading my trailer, drove 1.5 hours fighting with the wife the whole way, I am tired, angry, and at the moment I have absolutely no tolerance for bullshit. So it is unfortunate timing for Leo that I should have picked up his shipment of controllers on my way into town.
Requirements: Greentime (Leo) is an excellent communicator and we shared about 50 emails. I was pretty explicit in what I asked for. I wanted GENUINE IRFB4110 fets, I asked for the traces to be built up with 10mm2 wires (which we later renegotiated to 8mm2), I asked for the CA tap to be wired properly to the throttle and not to the ebrake, I asked for the current to be set as high as possible (which he stated was 80A). I told him I wanted the best - no expenses spared and I told him my intention to further modify the controller after his initial work to take it up to a 20KW machine.
Shipping: Ordered on July 10th and received about August 6th - one month is a very long turn around for 5 samples... especially for a guy saying that he wants to buy 50 units...EDIT FROM THE FUTURE: This is an overly harsh review. Turns out the lame looking traces really can handle 80A continuous and the RDSON of the mosfets really is about 4.6mOhms... so these are pretty damn legit. They dont look like it but they are.
What I received: Almost none of the requirements were met. I am extra disappointed since the communication was so clear... my expectations were high. I am used to having to communicate with smoke signals and body smells but Leo speaks perfect English. I knew something had to be wrong else he would be rich by now...
So when I opened the box it looked good at first.NOTE: IF YOU ARE NOT SEEING THE ENTIRE PICTURE - WITH THE LOGO DOWN IN THE CORNER - TRY A DIFFERENT BROWSER OR INCREASE YOUR SCREEN RESOLUTION. IN CHROME THAT IS THE CTRL button with minus (-)
They are nice small controllers and the packing was good. I liked the look of the heavy gauge wire coming out and the big thick copper ring terminals gave me hope
Typical garbage white connectors
Things started to turn ugly when I dropped the side cover and peeked insideEDIT FROM THE FUTURE: Did an 80A constant current test and the traces only heated up t0 40C so even though they look pinner they can actually handle 80A continuous.
Clearly those traces are not built up with 7AWG... or 8AWG... or 10AWG, 12AWG, 14AWG, or even 16AWG. Looks like a pair of 18AWG
ala Keywin / Lyen special. Look how far the PCB run is from the red wire to the yellow phase... at the very least it could have been soldered into the middle of the trace by the blue phase. That would give it a chance... but mounted over there and rated at 80A? Phtttt.... wait until I hook this up to my 80A current source and show how hot it gets after just 10 seconds.
Dude... frucking really?
This shows a complete lack of understanding. Why the hell would I want 7AWG wires hooked up to one end of a 10" PCB trace that has only a 16awg equivalent? And how the hell is that trace going to hold up to 80A continuous? No frigging way - unless you dont mind 150C traces and bubbling solder mask.This is wrong - they could be fake but testing shows that they at least have 4.6mOhms RDSON which means they are close fakes if they are fake. Not garbage fets at all.
Then things rolled further downhill when I realized that the mosfets were counterfeit. I have handled more IRFB4110 fets than anyone on this board - literally tens of thousands... and many other IR parts like the IRFB4115 and the surface mount version of the 4115. There is one thing they all have in common... THE PRINTING OF THE PART NUMBER. It is a very distinct color and texture. It is NOT a stamp - i.e. there is NO IMPRINT left on the plastic housing. It is some sort of laser print or some other non-contact technology (anyone know?) I guess it could be a stamp but I have no recollection of ever seeing a genuine IRFB4110 fet that had imprinted lettering.
These mosfets have the correct housings - all the features look right - but the labels are clearly stamped in - as there is a three dimensional indent where the stamp hit. These are not genuine IRFB4110 fets - every single one of them has a foggy dirty look - like a guy was working on his car and then rubbed his thumb on every one.
I am not saying that I am 100% sure. I am 90% sure. Smells like fish and looks like fish - I just need to taste one with my precision equipment and we will see if it is fish.EDIT FROM THE FUTURE: Good thing I said 90% Turns out the real IRFB4110's do have the indentations and I was totally wrong.
Ok - reviewing the pictures some of them look "better" - i.e. the pigment of the stamp looks like the right color... but they still have imprints. Something is off and wrong. Arg - I need to run a test on them. I have all the equipment to test the rdson, drain to source breakdown, gate turn-on, all the normal stuff - we will see if there is a glaring difference.
Ok - Ok... I guess it is possible they are real.... now that I am away from the controller and sitting at home I am second guessing my impression (sigh). Benefit of the doubt until I test them.
All of the low ESR caps are mounted poorly - long leads. This is forgivable but will have to be corrected.
I am getting tired here... might have to finish this review later
CA Tap is done wrong
Anyway - bah I am exhausted.
I suspect that John in CR is thinking that the proof is in the pudding and not in the recipe. There is some truth to that - if the controller runs strong and cool who cares what is inside right? From his perspective that is reasonable and it may meet his needs for the electric revolution where he is at. If so these are a super frigging value.Looking like John in CR was right... but we wont know until we test them.
For me the fact that things are not sound inside the box is a major turn-off... So first I will test it as it is. 100V 80A. If it survives I will either dump all 5 of these on the forum or I will upgrade them to pimp status. At a minimum they need 8awg+ on the traces, increased shunt power handling, standard plugs for throttle, maybe 3spd switch, cruise, etc.
Will have to see... if the fets are bogus that just completely ruins it for me no matter how good they run in practice.
Tomorrow I will try to do part two of the review. Maybe I will be in a better mood
-methodsEDIT FROM THE FUTURE: No part of this original review was deleted or modified. I left it as it was to show my bias and my mistakes. I added only what is in RED. I am not scared to be wrong - only scared of not being able to admit it when I am wrong