Nova Cruz Voloci Re-vamp

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Re: Nova Cruz Voloci Re-vamp

Post by skeetab5780 » Apr 17 2018 11:22am

I had a few moments today to start working on the 48v mod Voloci. It is unfortunate that the accessories do not work on the 48v mod, because it really brings the bike to life and makes it fun to ride with traffic. Maybe they did this purposely so people wouldn't go faster than the moped laws allow.

either way here is a quick video of the motor spinning on 15s, you can see I hit the horn button in the video and it doesn't do anything

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Re: Nova Cruz Voloci Re-vamp

Post by fechter » Apr 17 2018 12:56pm

I'm not sure about the Voloci, but many early ebikes could be 'spoofed' by feeding 36v to the key switch line but use 48v to the main controller wires. If you measure the voltage on the key switch, you might get an idea. A little 48v to 36v dc-dc converter would go downstream of the switch. In the old days, we would just use a tap between the batteries, but this will result in unbalanced drain.

The battery meter is pretty useless for a lithium battery, but you could do a separate meter that actually works. A CycleAnalyst would be nice or another option is the TK 15 style:
https://www.ebay.com/itm/TK15-Coulomb-M ... Sww3tY3Ngz

I have a couple of these and really like them. Display is very small but works well.
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Re: Nova Cruz Voloci Re-vamp

Post by skeetab5780 » Apr 17 2018 3:13pm

I was thinking about this a little today. All these parts are regular Tomos brand moped items. Do you think they would work at 12vdc. You would think thats what it steps down to anyway. I will try it out on one of the crappier bikes.

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Re: Nova Cruz Voloci Re-vamp

Post by fechter » Apr 17 2018 3:58pm

skeetab5780 wrote:
Apr 17 2018 3:13pm
I was thinking about this a little today. All these parts are regular Tomos brand moped items. Do you think they would work at 12vdc. You would think thats what it steps down to anyway. I will try it out on one of the crappier bikes.
Yes, I think the on-board dc-dc converter outputs 12v for the lights so you could use a separate dc-dc.
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Re: Nova Cruz Voloci Re-vamp

Post by electricalbicycle » Apr 17 2018 9:53pm

The Voloci uses a lot of Tomos or other off the shelf moped parts. They also have several special parts like frame and seat and swing arm. The front forks are bicycle as are the disc brakes. The controller is custom and the firmware is available on line. There is separate company that made a keyfob programmer from the on line firmware....so flashing is made easier.

The controller has a 36V to 12V converter on board. I think it is a single semiconductor Voltage Regulator with associated parts.

There are lots of 36 or 48 (or whatever) to 12 V downconverters that are small and cheap that will handle the lighting.

If you try to put in a more powerful headlight bulb, the headlight handlebar switch gets hot (not recommended). LEDs are a good solution for lots of reasons but you have to replace the turn signal flasher relay as the LED load is too low to make the stock flasher flash.

I tried running 48V and ended up overheating the stock battery contacts. Those things are a weak link. Might be better to forego the ease of battery swapping for the reliability of a plug and socket pigtail connection.

I have had the magnets come off a rotor at 36V, so that may be another weak link, especially if you over-Voltage the bike.

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Re: Nova Cruz Voloci Re-vamp

Post by ridethelightning » Apr 17 2018 10:02pm

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Re: Nova Cruz Voloci Re-vamp

Post by skeetab5780 » Apr 18 2018 9:05am

electricalbicycle wrote:
Apr 17 2018 9:53pm
The Voloci uses a lot of Tomos or other off the shelf moped parts. They also have several special parts like frame and seat and swing arm. The front forks are bicycle as are the disc brakes. The controller is custom and the firmware is available on line. There is separate company that made a keyfob programmer from the on line firmware....so flashing is made easier.

The controller has a 36V to 12V converter on board. I think it is a single semiconductor Voltage Regulator with associated parts.

There are lots of 36 or 48 (or whatever) to 12 V downconverters that are small and cheap that will handle the lighting.

If you try to put in a more powerful headlight bulb, the headlight handlebar switch gets hot (not recommended). LEDs are a good solution for lots of reasons but you have to replace the turn signal flasher relay as the LED load is too low to make the stock flasher flash.

I tried running 48V and ended up overheating the stock battery contacts. Those things are a weak link. Might be better to forego the ease of battery swapping for the reliability of a plug and socket pigtail connection.

I have had the magnets come off a rotor at 36V, so that may be another weak link, especially if you over-Voltage the bike.
Ya the good thing about these bikes being old is that only three of them have those crappy nimh removable battery pack contacts. I bet that's why they cost more to build that little plastic block that routes 30 wires into the controller area at a waterproof 90deg angle. Its impossible to work on. The 36v SLA versions also have those nice big covers if someone wanted a 80 mile range battery.

I will need to get some end covers made up for the other bikes since lots of the bikes were missing batteries/covers here and there. But I have the removable housings and can incorporate them into the bikes after covers are fitted.

I do have motors and lots of bikes so i'm not worried about that! One of the bikes has a completely different motor on it with a 54t sprocket instead of 45t

its super snappy but only goes about 20mph lol. This is one of the bad condition bikes missing lots of component so it may be a good candidate for a 72v Kelly controller upgrade and a 20s pack!

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Re: Nova Cruz Voloci Re-vamp

Post by skeetab5780 » Apr 18 2018 10:57am

Ok so here is some pics of the motors I have. I am not sure what the smaller one goes too? It looks fairly low power but beefy maybe a xootr scooter? They are brushless with hall sensors though.

If anyone has any info on these please feel free to post it up
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And then I have brand new in box Kollmorgen motors for the Voloci
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And this bike keeps throwing me for a loop, this is the odd bike with a different motor and sprocket. I went to take the controller side cover off...and I cannot because this Voloci is designed different and the side cover bolt are the 4 main bolt that bolt thru the entire frame and hold the kickstand spring and upper seat stay in place. I would have to completely disassemble this thing just to see the motor and controller. But this motor has a steel round housing and is noticeably louder than the other bikes systems. I am thinking it may be a brushed motor. But I am not ready to take the whole thing apart to find this out yet
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Re: Nova Cruz Voloci Re-vamp

Post by skeetab5780 » Apr 19 2018 7:10pm

So i attempted to run one of the parts bikes with a large sprocket on a kelly kbs 72v controller. I found the hall combo pretty quickly and it seemed to be working good, i went to take it for a ride and noticed the hall timing must be off since i couldnt hit the throttle after already coasting without it binding up unless you stop completely and then re take off. So i went and adjusted the hall sensor position so that it sounded good and allowed me to hit the throttle while spinning. I was able to get it running ok but it sounds loud/bad like its not 100% happy. I tried this before years ago and also had issues, but this was before i knew to adjust the halls. I need to get an amp meter in line with it since it seems a bit off.

This bike has a really huge 54t aluminum sprocket so i wanted to boost the voltage. I noticed the sprocket is fairly warped though unfortunately. I have a few bikes with warped disc rotors too from storage and laying all the bikes on one another.

I want to try the kls kelly since its sine wave and auto detectable, maybe it will perform better.
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Re: Nova Cruz Voloci Re-vamp

Post by skeetab5780 » Apr 20 2018 10:21am

Out of curiosity I had to try out the prototype Zooter bike to see if it worked...and all I had to do was plug in a 10s battery into the andersons it had already and that all she needed was a little juice!!

This bike is really neat but its pretty heavy and overbuilt for its power so it will be a show piece overall I think. I did get out and ride it around and its fairly slow but has decent torque
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Re: Nova Cruz Voloci Re-vamp

Post by skeetab5780 » Apr 23 2018 8:03pm

I took one of the bikes out today with a 12s battery thinking that would allow the controls to function and they still do not operate since voltage is too high. The battery was 48.5v when i started and by the end of the ride the horn would work only when under full acceleration(volt sag)

I was hoping 12s would work but i guess not, next will be trying a dc-dc converter, obviously the battery gauge will read full always anyways so thats the only downfall...even though i noticed on the 48v voloci the gauge worked well with a 15s pack. Dropped two bars while riding around for 30min

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Re: Nova Cruz Voloci Re-vamp

Post by fechter » Apr 24 2018 8:22am

Not sure exactly why the on board dc-dc quits at the higher voltage. It might be on the verge of blowing up.
A separate dc-dc should work fine. You could go for a separate battery meter too. I have had good results with the little TK 15 units. These actually measure the amp-hours, so give you a pretty good indication of battery capacity.

https://www.ebay.com/itm/DC8-80V-50A-Ba ... kYMsHWguLg
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Re: Nova Cruz Voloci Re-vamp

Post by skeetab5780 » Apr 25 2018 4:07pm

The History of Nova Cruz Voloci
They say its an electric motorbike - "We don't like the word moped" said Pearson, that might be a little oversimplified in description. It has a shiny body made from the same aluminum as an aircraft, Has suspension that's the technological cousin of the one used in formula one race cars and a brushless motor that is barely audible even as the bike carries a passenger uphill.
"The concept was simple. We wanted something that was useful, stylish and for people who travel 20 miles or less for commuting" said Pearson.
-Ulrich says the Voloci is intended for urban transportation, two-thirds of the world relies on modes of transportation on the scale of the electric motorbike
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I have been doing a ton of Googling trying to find all relevant information pertaining to this bike and its founders, below is what I have come up with so far

About Nova Cruz Products LLC
Nova Cruz Products, Inc. is a joint venture among Technique Applied Science, Lunar Design, and Cheskin Research - three award-winning consulting firms specializing in different aspects of new product development. Nova Cruz engineers have deep experience designing high-performance vehicles, including race cars, bicycles, wheel chairs, motorcycles, and solar-electric vehicles. After many years of designing products for leading companies, the partner firms have pooled their resources to create their own brands and products. Karl Ulrich, the company's Chairman, took a leave of absence from the faculty of The Wharton School of Business to found Nova Cruz in order to create practical, fun personal transportation products.

About the Voloci
-It's called the Voloci pronounced vo-lo-chee. In Italian it mean fast flying
-The Voloci runs entirely on rechargeable batteries
-It is emission free
-The Voloci runs on a 18-inch long battery pack that weighs less that 20lbs
-Without the battery the entire motorbike weighs only 59lbs "its like a heavy bike" said Ulrich
-The Voloci can be packed up and carried from place to place or inside a RV or boat with no fuel leaking
-30 mph top speed (accelerated to 20mph in just 5 seconds)
-DOT legal "motor driven cycle"
-Features a brushless motor that carries an adult rider up a 25-percent grade
-SLA version retailed for $1995
-NIMH version retailed for $2495
-Manufactured and sold by Nova Cruz Products, Inc. during the period 2001-2003
-Several hundred vehicles were sold (if anyone knows the actual number please contact me)
-Manual says to inflate tires to 73 PSI for maximum range!

The business portion of Nova Cruz Voloci
-Recruit a new electric vehicle, "The Voloci", manufacturing facility to the territory, along with quality jobs
-$325,000 Loan to Nova Cruz to establish a manufacturing facility in Scranton, PA for an electric 50cc motorbike (subordinated debt with royalty payback).
-$325,000 Equity to Nova Cruz (preferred shares)
- $75,000 to Hershey Park (a joint venture with PA Dept of EP), to purchase a 10kw wind turbine, 2kw solar photovoltaic, and one or two "Voloci" 50cc motorbikes for installation at the park for educational/informational purpose.
-$125,000 loan to Nova Cruz LLC with royalty payback and warrants for dealer development of electric vehicle.

-The region has had bad experience with other manufacturers of electric-powered mobility devices. In 2002, Nova Cruz Products, manufacturers of the Voloci electric bike, opened a 18,000 square-foot facility in Scranton, PA with the promise of employing 335 people by 2004. The company folded a year later. Italian company Oxygen World Inc. took over the assets and moved to Throop for a short time, then pulled out.
-We have been very active in Scranton, PA. Last year we reported on our success in recruiting and relocation an emerging electric vehicle company, Nova Cruz LLC, from New Hampshire to Scranton. Unfortunately, the company's new product did not achieve the market acceptance hoped for and the company discontinued operations. SEF was the largest secured creditor with fiduciary responsibility of recovering funds on behalf of all creditors and shareholders.
-During the subject period, one of our portfolio companies failed. Nova Cruz LLC was unsuccessful in introducing its "Voloci" electric vehicle to market. The company did request additional funding from us, but out due diligence indicated that additional funds from us would not be adequate to stabilize the company. The company chose to discontinue operations; see note of auditors. Appendix B for financial details.
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Although we realize that electric vehicle introductions are difficult, we nonetheless were disappointed with the failure of the Voloci product. As Nova Cruz's principal creditor, SEF became responsible for the sale of the assets on behalf of all creditors and shareholders. This activity gave is the opportunity to recruit two new firms to Scranton to continue Nova Cruz's objectives. Oxygen, SPA, a leading Italian developer of electric vehicles, chose Scranton as its North American headquarters. In addition, Xootr LLC formed and located in Scranton to purchase a portion of Nova Cruz company assets and continue the non-electric operations. We successfully completed the same of assets to best satisfy our fiduciary responsibilities and believe that our mission objectives remain intact.


The design portion of Nova Cruz Voloci
Leading mainstream 3D CAD vendor's sub-assembly capabilities lead to reduced design time so Nova Cruz can build prototypes in hours rather than weeks

Nova Cruz Products Inc. burned rubber in the personal transportation market with its recently unveiled Voloci, a whisper-quiet electric motorbike designed lightning fast in SolidWorks(R) three-dimensional computer-aided design software, SolidWorks announced today. SolidWorks enabled Nova Cruz to design parts and sub-assemblies in hours instead of weeks so it could get the super light motorbike to market much faster than if it had used other 3D CAD products.

Getting innovative products to market first is crucial for smaller manufacturing companies like Nova Cruz that are trying to spark a trend. SolidWorks quick design time originally helped the company get the Xootr scooter to market quickly and set the standard for nimble electric scooters. It also helped Nova Cruz's engineers design the Voloci's parts fast enough to have a working prototype in a matter of hours, rather than nearly 12 weeks with other 3D CAD software.

"We had a tight time frame. We wanted to set the bar for high-performance electric motorbikes that have a long range, are light, and can hit 30 mph, so we needed to get it to market fast," said Nathan Ulrich, Nova Cruz's chief technical officer and co-founder. "SolidWorks' Windows environment and powerful sub-assembly capabilities were integral to helping us quickly develop prototypes that we could test and tweak. That functionality coupled with the ability to transfer SolidWorks designs into a program that automatically machines the parts helped us produce a finished product in a shorter time than if we'd used other CAD packages."
N.H.-based Nova Cruz first made a splash in Jan. of 2000 when it launched the award-winning line of Xootr kickscooters. The company again turned to SolidWorks when it set out to apply the same concept to a motorized bike and change how the public and the industry view electric vehicles. Rather than the clunky, heavy electric bikes on the market that can only go 18 mph, the Voloci (unveiled in January of this year) weighs less than 80 pounds, is easy to carry, and reaches top speeds of 30 mph. Urban professionals looking for an affordable, convenient means of transportation, kids traveling in suburban neighborhoods, and even police officers and park personnel represent some of the Voloci's target audience.

Nova Cruz took advantage of the extensive SolidWorks Solution Partner Program (the largest in the industry with more than 400 products) to streamline production. It uses Gibbs and Associates' GibbsCAM, a computer-aided manufacturing (CAM) partner product for machining parts based on SolidWorks designs. The two technologies help companies accelerate both design and manufacturing. Nova Cruz also used Structural Research and Analysis Corporation's COSMOS/Works to perform structural analysis on various parts of the bike.

"Voloci is the next Nova Cruz product to provide a fun, efficient, and environmentally friendly way to commute and play," said Dave Corcoran, executive vice president of research and development at SolidWorks. "To set that standard, the company had to be first to market with its design innovations. SolidWorks and its partner products gave Nova Cruz's engineers the platform it needed to quickly build the bike's parts and sub-assemblies, test them, and assemble the entire finished product in record time so they could get the bike into consumers' hands before anyone else. SolidWorks has set the standard for providing engineers the design functionality they need in tight timeframes."

Prototype test ride review
Ken Trough of V is for Voltage recently got to test the prototype of the Voloci. I thought you might be interested in what he had to say.

Hey campers! I got to do a detailed investigation and ride of one of the very very few prototypes of the Voloci this past weekend. I met with Dan Ferguson, the west coast sales guru for Nova Cruz, in his backyard of Portland, Oregon. He brought one of the very few (2?) prototypes that exist right now and I went riding along the water on a beautiful sunny day. This prototype was not a finished production unit, and had some limitations. First of all, it only has about 70%-75% of the power, speed, and acceleration of the production units. Also, the lights and fuel gauge were not hooked up. This means that I cannot yet detail my impressions on the power and speed side, but I sure as heck can tell you all about the scooter and the ride itself.

First of all, looking at the Voloci on the web, I imagined it to be bigger. Something along the lines of an electric motorcycle. Several other people have remarked on the fact that this cycle will be perceived as a motorcycle (creating problems for those riding in parks or on sidewalks). I am VERY pleased to report that nothing can be further from the truth. It is smaller in person. In fact, it is noticeably smaller than most mountain bikes. Think of an oversized electric BMX bike with suspension and you won't be far off. No one will mistake this cycle for a motorcycle. In fact, most people will see it as a bicycle. I watched a couple of people come up to the Voloci, scrutinize it for several minutes, THEN realize that it doesn't have pedals. This is an example of people seeing what they expect to see. Since it looks like a bike, people's minds will register it as a bike as you ride by. The quiet ride will reinforce this perception. Owners will have no problems riding this cycle anywhere bicycles are accepted.

A Portland bicycle cop stopped and took a long hard look at it, and pronounced it very cool, stating that he wanted to get one himself, and that law enforcement agencies should consider it as a platform for bicycle cops, as it will go faster than a bicycle, has lots of range, and delivers the officer to his destination fully rested and ready for action. He really liked the super simple quick release battery pack, pointing out that this feature is the critical factor for a quick turnaround fleet vehicle.

This is the ideal platform for a rental fleet for the same reason. The double range battery pack would keep anyone entertained for an hour's rental (even at full speed), and a quick change with a fresh pack sends the scooter right back out the door with the next renter. Think campus vehicle for security, resorts, and colleges. The disc brakes make for solid stopping power under any conditions, with no wear on the rims.

Really, the only maintenance on this scooter besides charging the batteries is cleaning and oiling the chain. Everything looks strong and substantial. Durability should be excellent. The suspended chassis should also reduce failures substantially, due to reduced shock and vibration on the motor, controller and battery pack.

Now on to the juicy stuff... the ride itself.

I was really impressed with the overall ride and handling of the Voloci. Anyone who is not intimidated by a bicycle will have no problems with this cycle. The front and rear suspension really ate up the bumps. The suspension preload is adjustable, which is good news for heavier riders like myself. I was told that this cycle can handle a drop of four feet with a rider onboard. There was a nice 3 and a half foot jump on hand, and we were sorely tempted to try it, but given that this was one of the only Voloci cycles out there right now, we decided not to do this kind of abuse test yet. I did ride both on asphalt and in the dirt, and it handled both with no troubles. It was really gratifying to have the power of an electric cycle combined with the feel of a mountain bike. It was like having a super light trials bike or something. Really nice. Everyone that rides this thing is going to love it, I think.

The removable battery is super simple to install and remove. This means that commuters will be able to lock the Voloci up in any bike rack and take the battery pack into the office (or coffee shop, or apartment) for easy charging. It is important to note that the pictures on the web show the cycle with a single NiMH pack installed. The lead acid setup is similar and will fit into the same space in the chassis as the NiMH, though will not be removable. The double range NiMH pack is reported to "stick out" from the frame, filling the space under the seat. As neither Dan nor myself have seen this pack however, this is somewhat speculative at this time. If there is a downside to the design, it's that the controller is integrated into the motor, and is therefore going to be difficult to tweak for more speed. That said, I fully expect SOMEONE out there to successfully tweak it anyway, just not the average user.

The word is that production is starting at the beginning of April (mere days away), and Nova Cruz is on track to deliver the first 100 units in the first month.

I predict that this is going to be a HUGE HIT for Nova Cruz. The quality is obvious, the price is right, and the speed, versatility and range are going to be just great for a whole lot of users. This is a winner, and one of the best personal electric vehicles offered to date by anyone, anywhere.

Scooters and mopeds are widely used in Europe and in the developing world for zipping around town. Problem is the 50 cc two stroke engines on these bikes spew pollutants at a rate far higher than a modern automobile and the engines are noisy and cantankerous.

EVworld review
There is a new electric vehicle out there called the Voloci, manufactured by Nova Cruz Products in Dover New Hampshire, which takes aim squarely at this scooter/moped market for quick trips around town and short commutes.

I visited the Nova Cruz factory in New Hampshire and got a chance to ride the Voloci. The seat is so low to the ground and the bike is so light that it was not any more intimidating than a bicycle to ride. There are dual mirrors, turn signals and lighting making the vehicle completely street legal. The controls are a lot like a motorcycle but there is no shifting and no clutch.

To get going you just twist the throttle. The 1600 watt motor makes slight whine and the performance is surprisingly sprightly probably due to the light weight. I could definitely appreciate the suspension, front and rear, on the rutted roads I was traveling. I'd estimate that I was easily going about 25 miles per hour, but there was no speedometer. It is doubtful that you'll have to worry about getting pulled over by the police on this. With the heavy-duty suspension, the company is even offering tires that would allow the bike to be taken off road. The front and rear disk brakes made for easy stopping and should be reliable in the rain.

After riding around on the roads near Nova Cruz's factory for a while, I came to the conclusion that this comfortable, practical, speedy vehicle was also a lot of fun.

Clean electric technology means you don't have to worry about the gasoline fumes or noise. The other sweet thing about the Voloci is its light weight. Remove the 20 pound NiMH battery pack and you've got a bike that weighs only 59 pounds and can be stored in your urban apartment or lifted into your sailboat. The brushless electric motor means the Voloci should be long lived and relatively low maintenance, especially when compared to traditional mopeds and scooters.

Because it looks like a cross between a mountain bike and a moped you feel quite comfortable cruising around town. Licensing for the Voloci is very similar to that for a moped in most states, meaning very minimal requirements if any at all.

With electric vehicles there is always concern about range. Will it have enough range to be practical? The answer with the Voloci as compared to other electric scooters is probably yes. The Voloci has a range of 25 miles and a top speed of 30 miles per hour. If you keep the throttle floored the whole time the range might drop to 15 miles, but with a little effort you can easily manage the power to go at least 20 miles before needing a recharge. That's 10 trips to the grocery store or one very long commute to work.

In addition, Voloci can supply a dual battery pack so you can switch to the second battery when you run out of juice, effectively doubling the range to 40 to 50 miles. And the NiMH battery can be recharged in only 3 hours so you can plug in while you are at work or maybe even while you are sipping a cup of coffee at the local cafe. The NiMH battery is expected to have 700 recharge cycles before needing replacement. The Voloci is offered with an option of both a sealed lead acid and a NiMH battery pack.

I think that you are missing the point if you don't spend the few extra bucks to get the latest technology in the NiMH battery. It costs about $500 more but it weighs a lot less and has 700 recharge cycles versus 500 for the lead acid unit. In addition the lead acid battery is not removable which limits the recharging flexibility. Buying the lightweight Voloci with the lead acid battery would be like buying the latest miniature cell phone with an old clunky battery.

One of the problems I always have when commuting into Boston is that when I get to the train station, every parking space has been taken. With the Voloci I could go right to the front of the lot and park at the bike rack. The folks at Voloci can hook you up with a heavy duty Kryptonite lock to secure both the battery and the bike.

I met with Nathan Ulrich, the company's Chief Technical Officer who has a PhD. in mechanical engineering and an interest in alternative transportation technologies and with Naomi Cromwell, Nova Cruz's director of marketing. Naomi told me that Voloci is properly pronounced vo-LO-chee with an Italian accent. Volo is Italian for flight and Veloci is Italian for speed so this is a bike that moves at flight speed, especially when compared to other electric scooters.

Nathan has been in the two wheeled vehicle business since designing the Xootr (pronounced "Zooter") unpowered scooter which was a high quality alternative to the Razor scooter. At the high point of the scooter craze, Nova Cruz was shipping 1500 of the scooters a week. Nathan hopes to duplicate this success with the Voloci.

The closest competitor to this product might be something like the Lepton scooter offered by Zapworld. That scooter has a much higher weight at 233 pounds and costs about $1000 more for similar range and performance. But with the Voloci you can carry a spare battery if you need to double the range, an option not offered with the Lepton.

According to Nathan, the electric scooter market is currently screwed up with a lot of low quality products being dumped onto the market, effectively turning the product into a kid's toy. Nova Cruz is aiming at the high end of the market with products that have the "best quality and best performance." The Voloci is a bike that has tremendous utility for personal mobility compared to other scooters on the market. Its 1600 watt motor has four times the power of most electric scooters and there are no products which offer as great a combination of range and speed.

Nathan referred me to the Pertrans.com website with has a variety of articles on a new approach to personal mobility and is edited by his brother Karl Ulrich, a professor at the University of Pennsylvania.

Nova Cruz has two vans on the road all the time on the West and East Coast trying to build a dealer network. Many dealers have placed orders sight unseen for the product based on the company's reputation with the Xootr product.

Ironically Nova Cruz is located in the same state and not far from Dean Kamen's Segway company. Nathan said that he is actually good friends with the folks at Segway and does not consider them a competitor since the Voloci is not designed to be ridden on the sidewalk, and the Segway can't go 30 miles per hour. Nathan said that the Segway has actually helped the market because with a current selling price of $8000, the Segway has changed people's perception of the price point for personal mobility.

The bike is priced at between $1995 and $2495, depending on the battery option chosen. Voloci starts to ship their bikes this month, May 2002, and dealers can be located at Voloci.com or contact the factory directly at:

Nova Cruz Products, Inc.
55 Industrial Park Drive
Dover, NH 03820 USA
603.742.1037

Re-flashing the corrupted controller
The Voloci electric motorbike was made and sold by Nova Cruz Products Inc. during the period 2001-2003. It was too far ahead of its time and production soon ceased, but there are quite a lot of them out there. Unfortunately, the firmware had a bug and could get corrupted and a lot of these bikes did not get the very last update that fixed this. Kanda have just been working with one such guy to help him resurrect his machine.

There are various suggestions about how to update the bike’s firmware on the web, but they all miss some crucial details. The main code file is available but the fix also involves writing data to the separate EEPROM data memory and this is what is missing from the online descriptions.

The two files needed for the latest version, rev312, can be downloaded below as a zip file. It contains a Main.hex file for the flash (code) memory and a second data file for the EEPROM, main.eep. The Main.hex file is the same as the binary file available elsewhere (voloci_firmware_rev312.bin) except stored in a different format.

The final mistake made is to assume that the 8535 AVR microcontroller in the bike is an ATmega8535, but it is the early (now obsolete) AT90S8535 which programs differently.

Ok, you now can download the files required below and know what AVR microcontroller it is, but how do you get this code into the Voloci electric motorbike? For this you need an AVR In System Programmer or AVR ISP, but a lot don’t support AT90S8535 any more. Our Kanda AVR ISP range still supports this AVR microcontroller, so I’ll suggest you use one of these but other AVR ISPs may do the job.

If you are entirely ignorant about downloading code to microcontrollers and don’t want to get involved, we can preload our keyfob programmer with the correct files and settings and send it. Then you just need to disconnect the Hall sensor connector and the phase wires, power up the bike, plug in the keyfob and press the single button, job done! There is a link below to our AVR keyfob and you can contact Kanda support to load the correct files before shipping.

If you feel you can cope with a programmer, it is quite straightforward. Plug in the USB AVR ISP to the PC and let Windows auto-detect it. Now on the motorbike, disconnect the Hall sensor and phase wires, plug the ISP lead in to the 10-way connector and power up bike. Run the AVRISP-U software and it should automatically detect an AT90S8515 and set the software for this device. Now follow these simple instructions,

Go to File menu > Load Flash and select Main.hex
Go to File menu > Load EEPROM and select main.eep
Go to Device menu > Auto Program Options and select Erase Device, Program Flash Memory, Flash Verification, Program EEPROM Memory and EEPROM Verification
Finally select Device menu > Auto Program or press F5 key

Your Voloci motor bike should now run perfectly.
Last edited by skeetab5780 on Apr 26 2018 8:33am, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Nova Cruz Voloci Re-vamp

Post by fechter » Apr 25 2018 11:25pm

Great historical summary!

I have copies of the firmware for re-flashing a corrupted controller. I also have the AVRISP programmer unit and instructions. Used once.
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Re: Nova Cruz Voloci Re-vamp

Post by skeetab5780 » Apr 26 2018 8:35am

fechter wrote:
Apr 25 2018 11:25pm
Great historical summary!

I have copies of the firmware for re-flashing a corrupted controller. I also have the AVRISP programmer unit and instructions. Used once.
Thanks Fetcher! So far it looks like they are all revision 3.12 or 3.12T and work properly, other than one really old board I have that is completely different

I have one that may have a bad throttle since the wheel spins slowly when turned on, haven't had time to look into it yet

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Re: Nova Cruz Voloci Re-vamp

Post by electricalbicycle » May 01 2018 8:07pm

A company called Kanda.com has a "Keyfob Programmer" that can directly flash the Voloci firmware. Their site says that they will preload the firmware if you buy the Keyfob. The idea is that this is a one-step process without having to involve computers and other hardware/software. These guys took the code that was available on line, 3.12, and noticed some mistakes in the code that they corrected.
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Re: Nova Cruz Voloci Re-vamp

Post by skeetab5780 » May 02 2018 10:38am

electricalbicycle wrote:
May 01 2018 8:07pm
A company called Kanda.com has a "Keyfob Programmer" that can directly flash the Voloci firmware. Their site says that they will preload the firmware if you buy the Keyfob. The idea is that this is a one-step process without having to involve computers and other hardware/software. These guys took the code that was available on line, 3.12, and noticed some mistakes in the code that they corrected.
That is really cool! I do like the idea of trying to also up the amperage, I think I remember fetcher saying this is possible from 40 to 60?

I need you to make a mold of the two end battery caps so I can get someone to make them! I guess I can make some from scratch

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Re: Nova Cruz Voloci Re-vamp

Post by fechter » May 02 2018 2:28pm

I don't really know how much the motor and controller can take without failing. The shunt is easily accessible but I don't know what the stock value is. It could be measured. If the controller blows, it would be pretty easy to adapt an external controller.
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Re: Nova Cruz Voloci Re-vamp

Post by skeetab5780 » May 02 2018 7:52pm

Ive tried multiple voloci’s and about 5 different controllers. I have yet to find the perfect combination. Things seem to start getting wanky above 60v, im not sure if the hall placement has anything to do with it, or they just cant handle the current. The motor and battery connections on alot of these bikes scare me at 30a nvm 60, some are very lose and i had a ground fall off and short out. Luckily has no damage to controller

The bike i was trying the kelly controllers on, something happened to the motor. Its hard to turn. Possibly magnet fell off stator. When i get time im going to replace the motor and try again at 72v. I first set the controllers up with a 10s pack and a watt meter, and after getting the right combo, i run the bike no load and adjust the hall sensors so that the no load current is lowest. Thats the only way ive figured out how to get them running properly.

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Re: Nova Cruz Voloci Re-vamp

Post by fechter » May 03 2018 8:03am

The Kollmorgen motors have a track record of throwing magnets if the rpm gets too high. 60v is likely to be too much. I recall that 48v is the limit. It is possible to re-glue the magnets if they come off and aren't too badly damaged.

Most modern inrunner motors have some kind of mechanical keying that keeps the magnets in at high rpm. I have also seen designs that use a thin metal or carbon fiber band that goes around the outside of the rotor.
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Re: Nova Cruz Voloci Re-vamp

Post by electricalbicycle » May 03 2018 9:43pm

I bought a NOS Voloci in the box from an ex-dealer. The bike had never been run (in 11+ years) and was 100% stock. On the first ride or two, one magnet came off.
The bike had faster takeoff than other Volocis, so I was thinking maybe this was old firmware code (pre 3.12).
Not sure if the faster takeoff meant more current, which meant more heat. Maybe my bike got too hot and that caused the epoxy holding the magnets to fail.
It was a kick until the magnet came off.
I THOUGHT about re-gluing the magnet, but thought if one magnet came off, when will the others come off?
Also, the motor spins at high RPMs so balance would be important.
I thought about bringing it to a motor rewind shop to see what they could do, but I never did. My thought was to cut a shallow groove into the magnets and then tie a Stainless band to counter the centrifugal force.
What ever way I went, I was thinking I would need to rebalance the rotor.
I don't know a lot about the physics of motors, but it seems like the permanent magnets may loose magnetism over time. Is it possible that a lower magnetic field in the rotor causes the stator to use more current (and get hotter). Does anything on the Kollmorgen motors go out of whack if there isn't enough CEMF (because the magnetic field is weaker)?

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Re: Nova Cruz Voloci Re-vamp

Post by skeetab5780 » May 07 2018 8:12am

electricalbicycle wrote:
May 03 2018 9:43pm
I bought a NOS Voloci in the box from an ex-dealer. The bike had never been run (in 11+ years) and was 100% stock. On the first ride or two, one magnet came off.
The bike had faster takeoff than other Volocis, so I was thinking maybe this was old firmware code (pre 3.12).
Not sure if the faster takeoff meant more current, which meant more heat. Maybe my bike got too hot and that caused the epoxy holding the magnets to fail.
It was a kick until the magnet came off.
I THOUGHT about re-gluing the magnet, but thought if one magnet came off, when will the others come off?
Also, the motor spins at high RPMs so balance would be important.
I thought about bringing it to a motor rewind shop to see what they could do, but I never did. My thought was to cut a shallow groove into the magnets and then tie a Stainless band to counter the centrifugal force.
What ever way I went, I was thinking I would need to rebalance the rotor.
I don't know a lot about the physics of motors, but it seems like the permanent magnets may loose magnetism over time. Is it possible that a lower magnetic field in the rotor causes the stator to use more current (and get hotter). Does anything on the Kollmorgen motors go out of whack if there isn't enough CEMF (because the magnetic field is weaker)?
What about re glueing all of the magnets? I bet glue has gotten a bit better in the last 15 years. How long does glue last anyway... forever? Old glue seems to turn to dust in the wind

All I know is that I have a box of motors from the same era and the magnets in them are stuck together so strong I cannot get them apart with just my own body strength, so I feel they still have life in them

I have noticed almost all of the voloci's are a bit different from each other. Not one of them is exactly the same as another.

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Re: Nova Cruz Voloci Re-vamp

Post by skeetab5780 » May 08 2018 10:14am

Got a couple old Voloci pics off Intalek.com

This picture looks neat since the cables are not routed thru the frame yet in this bike, must be a pretty early model of the NIMH version
Image
And here is a picture of a heavily modified SLA version with some sort of free energy machine on the back of it that regenerated power somehow...
Image
Image
I wonder how much range it extended the ride and how much weight he added, looks like about twice the weight of a regular voloci...with new batt technology this is not so practical anymore
Image

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Re: Nova Cruz Voloci Re-vamp

Post by fechter » May 08 2018 11:43am

skeetab5780 wrote:
May 08 2018 10:14am

And here is a picture of a heavily modified SLA version with some sort of free energy machine on the back of it that regenerated power somehow...
Here's a link to the Intalek web site:
http://www.intalek.com/Index/Projects/S ... K_xPOD.htm

Wonder how much money they took from investors?
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Re: Nova Cruz Voloci Re-vamp

Post by skeetab5780 » May 08 2018 12:43pm

fechter wrote:
May 08 2018 11:43am
skeetab5780 wrote:
May 08 2018 10:14am

And here is a picture of a heavily modified SLA version with some sort of free energy machine on the back of it that regenerated power somehow...
Here's a link to the Intalek web site:
http://www.intalek.com/Index/Projects/S ... K_xPOD.htm

Wonder how much money they took from investors?
Those Perrault Valves look like homemade pipe bombs!

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