My 1st ebike, Pls Help Verify Kit/Info Before I Buy

General Discussion about electric bicycles.
markz   100 GW

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Re: My 1st ebike, Pls Help Verify Kit/Info Before I Buy

Post by markz » May 31 2021 3:17pm

Save your money until you have double that, $1200 is a good starting point and you will enjoy riding your ebike even more.
But that also depends on if you already have a bicycle.
Lets price it out:
A good Motor (Leaf 1500W/MXUS 3kw/BBSHD/C4k - $300-$450usd on up
Controller can be had for cheap $50 and at the utmost $75-$100usd for big power, fast speed.
Good quality Battery 48V25Ah40A $600-$800usd
Good quality Charger 4A $100usd
Throttles
Torque Arms
Skip the display, no need for them, also more wires = more things that could go wrong + setting up + more stuff on your handlebars to stick out to good or bad passerby's



Once you ride an ebike its loads of fun and you will ride more often if you build it right.
If you dont build your ebike right, you will lose interest fast. Any little hill will have you dreading that you bought a wimpy little motor, or bought the wrong kv turn count motor, bought the wrong battery power rating, laced your hub into a wrong wheel size, bought a slow charging battery.

Use the tools at your disposal, learn the Trip Simulator, how to plug in your route and move the route in the pull down menu.
https://ebikes.ca/tools/trip-simulator.html

Also these tools is helpful

Motor Simulator
https://ebikes.ca/tools/simulator.html

Spoke Calculator
https://ebikes.ca/tools/spoke-calc.html




DearDeathDay wrote:
May 31 2021 2:25pm
Oh, so I should just ask whoever I buy the kit from for a spare? That doesn't seem like a terrible idea to be fair.

I totally get where you are coming from with that statement about not cheaping out! The problem is I don't have thousands of dollars to spend on an ebike. I can either get one at my budget now or wait six months and maybe have a bigger budget :<

I have $600 more or less at the most. If you have any recommendations in that price range I would be much obliged?

RunForTheHills   100 W

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Re: My 1st ebike, Pls Help Verify Kit/Info Before I Buy

Post by RunForTheHills » May 31 2021 3:40pm

You have said that you have a relatively short and flat commute. It won't take long to get stronger riding the bike without a motor. In a month or so you will feel totally different about your fitness than you do today. I would save your money for another six months and do it right. Also, if you don't have tools you will need to budget for those too.

DearDeathDay   10 mW

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Re: My 1st ebike, Pls Help Verify Kit/Info Before I Buy

Post by DearDeathDay » May 31 2021 4:34pm

markz wrote:
May 31 2021 3:17pm
Save your money until you have double that, $1200 is a good starting point and you will enjoy riding your ebike even more.
But that also depends on if you already have a bicycle.
Lets price it out:
A good Motor (Leaf 1500W/MXUS 3kw/BBSHD/C4k - $300-$450usd on up
Controller can be had for cheap $50 and at the utmost $75-$100usd for big power, fast speed.
Good quality Battery 48V25Ah40A $600-$800usd
Good quality Charger 4A $100usd
Throttles
Torque Arms
Skip the display, no need for them, also more wires = more things that could go wrong + setting up + more stuff on your handlebars to stick out to good or bad passerby's



Once you ride an ebike its loads of fun and you will ride more often if you build it right.
If you dont build your ebike right, you will lose interest fast. Any little hill will have you dreading that you bought a wimpy little motor, or bought the wrong kv turn count motor, bought the wrong battery power rating, laced your hub into a wrong wheel size, bought a slow charging battery.

Use the tools at your disposal, learn the Trip Simulator, how to plug in your route and move the route in the pull down menu.
https://ebikes.ca/tools/trip-simulator.html

Also these tools is helpful

Motor Simulator
https://ebikes.ca/tools/simulator.html

Spoke Calculator
https://ebikes.ca/tools/spoke-calc.html
I really would prefer to have a display on my bike so that I know how fast I'm going... Aside from that I can kind of see your point :<

$1200 as a minimum tho? For a 750w motor and a 36-48v 10~AH battery? That seems... like quite a lot. Would you recommend that even something like this from ebikeling isn't worth the money? I don't need to go fast and I don't have any steep hills. I just want to be able to get around without having to rely on my level of fitness. Even when I get to the point where biking the distance isn't anything the issue is more a lack of a will to get up and go and having the option to just... not have to put a ton of effort in is really appealing.

In regards to the motor; I live in the USA. I know myself well enough to know that getting anything more than a 750w (or 1000w at a stretch) motor is a bad idea. I will inevitably fall upon that moment where I'm late for something and do something stupid and get pulled over because I'm going too fast... or I get in an accident or whatever... Regardless of that I'd really rather just like to stay within the legal limit to prevent any issues. At the present time, this is my first bike and this is not the hill I want to die on lol

Further, this is my first ebike. Is... spending that much money on something I might decide isn't for me really a good idea? Like, I mean is the difference really going to make that much of a difference in my impression and how much I enjoy riding?

I've always liked the idea of riding a motorcycle and this seemed like a much safer alternative so there is that as well. I want to get going with this now but if it's not worth my time to get something at the level of the kit I linked above then I'll probably have to scrap the project until I'm making a living wage. I should have specified, but if I wait until the new year then I won't be able to dump that much more into the project. Maybe $1k at the absolute most. That would get me a safe battery and a cheap Chinese kit but probably not the kind of thing you are thinking of. I am at the stage where I can either spend $~600 or just shelf the project .-.

Thank you for the links tho! I'll have to check those out more carefully.
RunForTheHills wrote:
May 31 2021 3:40pm
You have said that you have a relatively short and flat commute. It won't take long to get stronger riding the bike without a motor. In a month or so you will feel totally different about your fitness than you do today. I would save your money for another six months and do it right. Also, if you don't have tools you will need to budget for those too.
I have most of the tools already (wrenches, etc.) except any bike specific ones. For example, if I decide to build my own wheel then I'd need to get the stuff for that etc. I might have been too optimistic in the way I phrased things earlier. If I wait until the new year I won't have like double the money to spend or anything. I'd be able to push it to maybe $800-1000 if I'm lucky. And I mean lucky, because saving that much more would be a matter of luck or seriously over taxing myself. What will most likely happen is I'll have the same exact amount and be in even less of a position to spend it.

I guess I'm wanting to just get it now partly because I'm afraid that you are correct lol

If I do end up being fine with the commute in 6 months then I might not want to upgrade or I might be convinced it isn't worth it. I don't... want that. Does that make any sense? I know it may seem ridiculous for someone on a budget like mine to be thinking "me thinking I shouldn't get this later is bad" but it's just the kind of things I've always wanted and that I've gotten myself waaaay too hyped up about in the last few months. Maybe I should just take a step back and reevaluate. If what I have budgeted isn't enough for a flat commute and trips to the store and around town then I seriously overestimated how much of a save this would be compared to other options.

:/

Just to be 100% clear I am looking for a bike that can do just that. I don't need anything crazy and I'd prefer to stay within the legal limits for the USA. My commute isn't currently very long, though I'm obviously on the lookout for a better position, and the main issue is getting something that won't explode and that can carry my weight + groceries or other cargo. I want something that will make my life easier in the long run and be able to take me distances that I would never be able to reach casually. I want to enjoy going for a ride but I have never once in my life enjoyed prolonged exercise. I want to be able to get out there and go around and look at things and not have to worry about whether or not me stopping for 10m to grab a cuppa will kill my desire to go on.

Dunno, that's probably too much information lol

Morale of the story is that if spending $600 for my first ebike will be a waste of money relative to what is worth it... then at least I was told that much before making any final purchasing decisions.

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Re: My 1st ebike, Pls Help Verify Kit/Info Before I Buy

Post by RunForTheHills » May 31 2021 5:27pm

I don't know if will be a waste of money, but there is a certain amount of risk to buying an inexpensive kit and battery. It doesn't sound like you have a whole lot of discretionary income though. I know you want a new toy, but having some savings for life's inevitable emergencies is more important.

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Re: My 1st ebike, Pls Help Verify Kit/Info Before I Buy

Post by 999zip999 » May 31 2021 6:06pm

Here's a cheap battery if you going to wait 6 weeks for it to be delivered
LG MJ1 / SANYO GA || BATTERYPACK FULL WELDED

199$/each, >2 packs 195$/each, >4 packs
If you can make it fit on your bikei well that didn't fully copy he's in the new for sale section

CHEAP NEW ORIGINAL 18650 BATTERY CELLS AND PACKS

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Eastwood   100 W

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Re: My 1st ebike, Pls Help Verify Kit/Info Before I Buy

Post by Eastwood » May 31 2021 6:19pm

DearDeathDay wrote:
May 31 2021 10:53am

Eastwood wrote:
May 31 2021 8:06am
Yeah there’s always that chance of fire with any battery. Upp batteries is a solid choice. They also can use whatever grades cells you want and customize the sizes. Use the seller on Amazon if you buy from them.
How would I go about contacting them about that? I used some buttons on Amazon somewhere and it let me send a message but (unless its hiding) I haven't gotten a response yet. I suppose I might just need to be more patient tho.
Here’s their contact, they respond very quickly. Great customer service! They built me a custom 84v 60amp bms battery 20ah. The battery is working great I have probably 50 charge cycles on it by now.
(bigpower20@163.com)

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Re: My 1st ebike, Pls Help Verify Kit/Info Before I Buy

Post by DearDeathDay » May 31 2021 7:23pm

RunForTheHills wrote:
May 31 2021 5:27pm
I don't know if will be a waste of money, but there is a certain amount of risk to buying an inexpensive kit and battery. It doesn't sound like you have a whole lot of discretionary income though. I know you want a new toy, but having some savings for life's inevitable emergencies is more important.
Well, I have about $600 set aside for the project. I genuinely should not be spending any considerably larger amount than that on this tho. Then I would be dipping into funds that are set aside for emergencies and other more salient things (such as food... and rent... etc.) I could save more but it took me months to safely set aside this much. It’s that kind of situation, ya know? Like, based on what I have and can get anymore than $600 is too much of an investment for me right now because I have other responsibilities so unless my fortunes take a dramatic turn (which thy won’t, because -you know- that’s life.) that’s what I’ve got.

Anyways I’m pretty sure that I’ve babbled way too much about my feeling on these last few posts. I think, saying I can’t spend more than $600 right now, “can I get anything decent/worthwhile for the budget” might have been enough :p

The result of my inquiry has been somewhat disappointing but I really shouldn’t have expected much else. Obviously, the cheapest things I could find wouldn’t be very good. I guess... even the slightly more expensive stuff doesn’t really meet the standards of this forum. My safest bet is probably getting the lower capacity pack from ebikeling.

Separating everything else from this conversation... I 100% don’t need more than 500-1000w on my motor and there’s no reason for me to get more than ~10AH of capacity because I can charge everyday and I shouldn’t ever have to go more than 20m. This would be my first ebike and my first time messing with a bike like that so I think going for lower tier parts might be a good thing to start with? If anything goes wrong or I don’t treat it properly I’m not out of any money I couldn’t loose. That my rational, at least, but maybe it’s just wishful thinking? Obviously making a totally rational choice here won’t be easy for me...

I think that... waiting for the 750w ebikeling kit to come back into stock and getting the battery that comes with it (or a better one) might be my best bet? It’s pretty reputable brand wise and I haven’t heard tale of their batteries catching on fire (but that’s probably just because it hasn’t been as sensationalized as UPP). The Bosch kit is probably a good first or second choice as well, due to the name brand being a decent pick for mid drives. My third choice is to get a 1000w 700c motor kit and the UPP battery (alternatively, I can use that with the other kits) I linked before.

My fourth choice is to put aside some more savings and get a cheap kit (ebikeling, etc.) and a good battery - which seems to be the most suggested and reasonable choice. Maybe I can even get it together before the end of the summer. If I stick with a 36v 500w motor setup then a decent battery would be comparatively cheaper but... I might suffer from buyers remorse for not getting enough power - which does seem to be a primary concern here. Ahh, decisions are not my strong suit! I’m sure there are other possibilities (such as not getting anything) which I have not listed as well.

Thank you for your advice! I’ll certainly take it all into consideration when coming to my final decision. You might be right that I just... shouldn’t do this... but letting go of a quasi-childhood dream/4 months of on and off planning will take a bit of willpower lol
999zip999 wrote:
May 31 2021 6:06pm
Here's a cheap battery if you going to wait 6 weeks for it to be delivered
LG MJ1 / SANYO GA || BATTERYPACK FULL WELDED

199$/each, >2 packs 195$/each, >4 packs
If you can make it fit on your bikei well that didn't fully copy he's in the new for sale section

CHEAP NEW ORIGINAL 18650 BATTERY CELLS AND PACKS
I definitely don’t want to wait that long for a battery to come in! One of the things I think is most important is having access to repair services and waiting actual months for all of that to work out would defeat the purpose of this endeavor. Thank you tho! Assuming you aren’t some kind of spam bot/advertiser o.O
Eastwood wrote:
May 31 2021 6:19pm
Here’s their contact, they respond very quickly. Great customer service! They built me a custom 84v 60amp bms battery 20ah. The battery is working great I have probably 50 charge cycles on it by now.
(bigpower20@163.com)
Thanks! Maybe I’ll try and contact them that way just to see what their cookie cutter response is. I can’t expect much from a Chinese brand but it’s not a bad idea even if I don’t want anything custom built.

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Re: My 1st ebike, Pls Help Verify Kit/Info Before I Buy

Post by 999zip999 » May 31 2021 10:31pm

I asked we you live as United States is a big place. Halfway between LA and San Diego my neighbor has a bike store where you rent bikes after about 3 months he'll sell one for 600 bucks.

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Re: My 1st ebike, Pls Help Verify Kit/Info Before I Buy

Post by docw009 » May 31 2021 11:17pm

I built this bike in 2015 using an old Trek 800. The motor is a $210 ebikeling 500W geared motor with a 3 speed PAS. The battery is a 36V 10AH that cost $280. The motor has never been off the bike. Bike tops out at 22 mph. The kit didn't have a speedometer or display. I use a $10 bike computer, which is more accurate than many displays,
El Trekko (1 of 1).JPG
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I have tested all kinds of inexpensive 36V batteries on it. Here it is with a pair of hoverboard packs that cost me $60. Good for 25 -30 miles.
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Most forum members here would have no use for this bike. It's slow, and maybe not much fun to ride. Me, I rode it today and its more fun to ride than my commercially made 20" fat tire folding bike. That's slow too, and more work to pedal. I've never had much desire for a 1000-1500W motor. Just an old geezer that likes to ride for recreation, Don't have to go fast.

This is a recent pic of my second bike conversion that I did in 2016. It uses a 750W Bafang BBS02 mid drive that cost me $600 then, but is around $450-500 today. I originally paid $550 for a 48V12ah battery, making it an expensive kit, but in this photo, I have a $120 48V10AH Laudation with 21700 cells on it. This is not a slow bike and will push 28 mph. However, I ride it slow and with the same pedal effort as the above, it goes about 15 mph vs 12 mph, As for the $120 battery, I don't recommend it, The original BMS failed and I will have to replace it, but small pack did run my bike well.
IMG_1199.JPEG
IMG_1199.JPEG (1.4 MiB) Viewed 235 times

DearDeathDay   10 mW

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Re: My 1st ebike, Pls Help Verify Kit/Info Before I Buy

Post by DearDeathDay » May 31 2021 11:51pm

999zip999 wrote:
May 31 2021 10:31pm
I asked we you live as United States is a big place. Halfway between LA and San Diego my neighbor has a bike store where you rent bikes after about 3 months he'll sell one for 600 bucks.
Unfortunately, I’m nowhere near there! Thanks anyways!
docw009 wrote:
May 31 2021 11:17pm
I built this bike in 2015 using an old Trek 800. The motor is a $210 ebikeling 500W geared motor with a 3 speed PAS. The battery is a 36V 10AH that cost $280. The motor has never been off the bike. Bike tops out at 22 mph. The kit didn't have a speedometer or display. I use a $10 bike computer, which is more accurate than many displays,

I have tested all kinds of inexpensive 36V batteries on it. Here it is with a pair of hoverboard packs that cost me $60. Good for 25 -30 miles.

Most forum members here would have no use for this bike. It's slow, and maybe not much fun to ride. Me, I rode it today and its more fun to ride than my commercially made 20" fat tire folding bike. That's slow too, and more work to pedal. I've never had much desire for a 1000-1500W motor. Just an old geezer that likes to ride for recreation, Don't have to go fast.

This is a recent pic of my second bike conversion that I did in 2016. It uses a 750W Bafang BBS02 mid drive that cost me $600 then, but is around $450-500 today. I originally paid $550 for a 48V12ah battery, making it an expensive kit, but in this photo, I have a $120 48V10AH Laudation with 21700 cells on it. This is not a slow bike and will push 28 mph. However, I ride it slow and with the same pedal effort as the above, it goes about 15 mph vs 12 mph, As for the $120 battery, I don't recommend it, The original BMS failed and I will have to replace it, but small pack did run my bike well.
Thank you for your story! I’m definitely getting the impression that some of the recommendations are for ebikes designed to go fast... While I’m not opposed to that it’s not something I’m looking for right now. I want to make my commute easier... not more dangerous... After all, if I just wanted to go fast I think I’d have skipped to motorcycles. I don’t think I’ve ever gone more than 10mph on a bike before. Maybe when I was going down this long hill once? Maybe...

How much experience do you have with batteries? You must have done at least a little wire work to put together the bike with the hoverboard batteries? All around that does seem to be the absolute cheapest option for a battery pack but I personally have no experience with batteries so it seems like a terrible place to start off for me.

I’ll probably still end up getting some kind of kit, honestly, but it might not be for a month or two. Hopefully by then I’ll have come to peace with the decision; whatever way it falls. Maybe I’ll even have some more cash to throw at the problem by then... then I won’t have to worry so much about exploding batteries... I don’t know if I’m now overly paranoid or not paranoid enough lol

Anyways, thanks again! It’s pretty neat hearing about your progress over the years. It certainly made me more excited!

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dogman dan   100 GW

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Re: My 1st ebike, Pls Help Verify Kit/Info Before I Buy

Post by dogman dan » Jun 01 2021 5:55am

I was 20 thou in charge card debt when I started with e bikes. It was 2008, and I was afraid they would jack up my interest rates if I kept rolling over that debt. My car was nearly dead, eating my paycheck every other month, and my work 15 miles away. By parking the car most days I could get 6 months between repairs and pay the cards off. The banks were happy, and I kept my low interest rate till I paid it down. Then I could afford the payment on a newer car, and about the same time changed to a job where I worked from home. So that car is lasting forever, with nothing needed but tires and oil changes.

Getting out of that debt hole though, it all started with a really janky, extremely shoddy front hub kit, but paired with a really good 36v ping battery. As time went on, I spent a lot on better stuff, for the fun. I kept constantly upgrading my kit, as kits got a lot better. And upgraded my bikes. ( started with a 50 buck mtb) I raced a bike against gas motor bicycles at 50 mph, and built long haul bikes to take camping trips. My budget for all this, was about $50 a month. So the upgrades more like each spring. Not every couple months.

With no hills in your area, I can kind of guess where you live. Its not the rocky mountains or West Virginia. But pedaling to work may be fine, pedaling home not so much, if you live in the humid south, or a flatter desert city like Phoenix. It can be the climate that deters you from biking more than the hills. Where I live, If I ride to town, I climb a 1000 foot tall hill to get back home, and the ride home after work might be 105 F.

You are on the right track to try an e bike.

You don't need a big heavy fast 48v 1000w kit. A 350 watt, 36v kit will do everything you currently require. It will go slow when the wind is really strong, but it will definitely get you around town. Only if you weigh 300+ pounds would there be a problem. Stick leg doesn't sound like that.

Find a decent kit for 36v, with a low power motor. The low power will help your batter last. BTW, even with my huge hill, I rode 36v for three years, with that first ping battery. And low power 350w motors did make it up that hill. slow, but they climbed it.

Again, if you must, go with a small battery, like 36v 10 ah. But do try to find one that is better than the very cheapest. Battery can be upgraded later, but the first one should last a year for sure.

Just charge it in the safest place you can, for example inside your kitchens oven, or better still in a bbq grill outside, if you have a private porch on the back of the apt. Just don't fall asleep while its charging. That was my biggest mistake. Again, its not going to burn your house down. Its that rare. Much less than 1%. Likely less than .01%. But if it happens, you'd be glad to be awake. I was sleeping, nearly did not get out of the house.

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Re: My 1st ebike, Pls Help Verify Kit/Info Before I Buy

Post by DearDeathDay » Jun 01 2021 10:02am

dogman dan wrote:
Jun 01 2021 5:55am
I was 20 thou in charge card debt when I started with e bikes. It was 2008, and I was afraid they would jack up my interest rates if I kept rolling over that debt. My car was nearly dead, eating my paycheck every other month, and my work 15 miles away. By parking the car most days I could get 6 months between repairs and pay the cards off. The banks were happy, and I kept my low interest rate till I paid it down. Then I could afford the payment on a newer car, and about the same time changed to a job where I worked from home. So that car is lasting forever, with nothing needed but tires and oil changes.

Getting out of that debt hole though, it all started with a really janky, extremely shoddy front hub kit, but paired with a really good 36v ping battery. As time went on, I spent a lot on better stuff, for the fun. I kept constantly upgrading my kit, as kits got a lot better. And upgraded my bikes. ( started with a 50 buck mtb) I raced a bike against gas motor bicycles at 50 mph, and built long haul bikes to take camping trips. My budget for all this, was about $50 a month. So the upgrades more like each spring. Not every couple months.

With no hills in your area, I can kind of guess where you live. Its not the rocky mountains or West Virginia. But pedaling to work may be fine, pedaling home not so much, if you live in the humid south, or a flatter desert city like Phoenix. It can be the climate that deters you from biking more than the hills. Where I live, If I ride to town, I climb a 1000 foot tall hill to get back home, and the ride home after work might be 105 F.

You are on the right track to try an e bike.

You don't need a big heavy fast 48v 1000w kit. A 350 watt, 36v kit will do everything you currently require. It will go slow when the wind is really strong, but it will definitely get you around town. Only if you weigh 300+ pounds would there be a problem. Stick leg doesn't sound like that.

Find a decent kit for 36v, with a low power motor. The low power will help your batter last. BTW, even with my huge hill, I rode 36v for three years, with that first ping battery. And low power 350w motors did make it up that hill. slow, but they climbed it.

Again, if you must, go with a small battery, like 36v 10 ah. But do try to find one that is better than the very cheapest. Battery can be upgraded later, but the first one should last a year for sure.

Just charge it in the safest place you can, for example inside your kitchens oven, or better still in a bbq grill outside, if you have a private porch on the back of the apt. Just don't fall asleep while its charging. That was my biggest mistake. Again, its not going to burn your house down. Its that rare. Much less than 1%. Likely less than .01%. But if it happens, you'd be glad to be awake. I was sleeping, nearly did not get out of the house.
Thank you for the information! I'm (thankfully) not in any debt right now but half the idea of trying this out is to prevent drowning myself in car payments I can't afford... It's super cool that you got yourself out of that situation with the help of an ebike. The fact that something like that has sparked a decade long interest in the topic... it must have at least been a little life changing!

And yeah, considering that doubling the capacity usually at least 1.5x the price its probably a good idea for me to start with something small and then worry about upgrades after I have some first hand experience.

Are Unit Pack Power batteries the very cheapest? I was never really considering getting something sketchy or DIY for all the reasons that have already been listed. I guess I just didn't realize that a decent battery pack started at 500 and only went up from there. UPP is pretty cheap comparatively but it isn't "suspiciously" Aliexpress levels of cheap as far as I can tell?

Recharging outside or on the porch or... in a heatproof metal box, maybe? That does seem like a good idea. A bit of an investment but... its a metal box, it's not gonna need to be replaced any time soon and will last well into the future. My next question would then be, if a lithium ion battery catches on fire while charging will it also catch the wire on fire and then set the whole building on fire through the electric system? Further, will keeping it outside all the time through the various weather of the seasons be detrimental to the life of the system in the long run? Like, if I leave it outside in a metal box and the sun hits it all day won't it heat up a bunch and then be in more danger of exploding? Same for the cold/rain/etc. ?

The recommendations I have seen floating around seem to indicate that the battery catching the wire on fire (and then everything in the area) isn't a serious concern and that charging in a box would actually work to mitigate most of the danger. Obviously, I should still keep a relative eye on it (maybe some thermal sensors tied up to an alarm?) but that is really a given with using anything that generates heat.

I think that maybe getting the cheapest kit I can find and then spending every penny I have left of the budget on the battery is probably the right call? Or, at least, that is definitely the impression I have gotten so far.

Thanks again! I don't want to waste my money but, at the same time, I also don't want to only buy the things I need when I'm in a position to get things that I want? Does that make sense? Like, whats the point of just scrapping by paycheck to paycheck if you never do any of the things you want... It is definitely not that serious for me (not even a little, really) but the sentiment rings true nonetheless. Then again, maybe I'm just still trying to talk myself into it q:

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Re: My 1st ebike, Pls Help Verify Kit/Info Before I Buy

Post by E-HP » Jun 01 2021 10:12am

DearDeathDay wrote:
May 30 2021 1:36am
Anyways, thank you for reading all of this! Any assistance here would really be appreciated! I’d hate to get everything together and then learn it didn’t work because I misunderstood something lol
You've received a lot of solid information and advice already, but unfortunately, probably not what will lead you to success, given your budget and skills, and likely, tools. I'm assuming you don't own a DVM, crimpers, or soldering iron, but correct me it I'm wrong. My advice to you is to buy everything together, including the battery, in one kit that fits into your $600 budget.

Forget anything about building your own wheel (since you don't have bicycle knowledge or tools), or buying battery separate from a kit. You don't have what you need to go that direction, unless you have a separate budget for tools and miscellaneous parts. Mixing and matching will introduce more than you can handle at this point.

For the kit, keep in mind your upgrade path for the future. You've posted links to all kinds of motors, geared and direct drive, so maybe do some research on what you want in the long run, since you'll likely replace the battery before the motor, if your starting point is a cheap all-in kit. That and the controller will likely be upgraded before the motor. At your budget level, the battery will be a crap or crap+ rating anyway, so look more closely at the rest of the kit.

You'll be able to ride around with that set up for a while before you figure out if you need more, and what more you need.

My bike started with about a $650 investment, not including my old mountain bike donor. That was with an upgraded controller and display ($100), since I could see the kit controller was crappy, a couple of throttles (tried a couple of options) and buying the battery separately. Since I already had tools, I could deal with changing out connectors and troubleshooting the phase and hall wire connections, etc. I also already had experience with bicycles and electronic components. The bike worked great and met all of my expectations, until my expectations grew.

Good luck!

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Re: My 1st ebike, Pls Help Verify Kit/Info Before I Buy

Post by RunForTheHills » Jun 01 2021 11:01am

DearDeathDay wrote:
Jun 01 2021 10:02am
I think that maybe getting the cheapest kit I can find and then spending every penny I have left of the budget on the battery is probably the right call? Or, at least, that is definitely the impression I have gotten so far.

Thanks again! I don't want to waste my money but, at the same time, I also don't want to only buy the things I need when I'm in a position to get things that I want? Does that make sense? Like, whats the point of just scrapping by paycheck to paycheck if you never do any of the things you want... It is definitely not that serious for me (not even a little, really) but the sentiment rings true nonetheless. Then again, maybe I'm just still trying to talk myself into it q:
It sounds like you have your budget figured out. Go ahead and do it. You will make mistakes and learn from the experience and the next upgrades or new build will be closer to what you want. Some money will be "wasted" as you will not like something about the bike and want to upgrade it. That is part of the process even if you have an unlimited budget.

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Re: My 1st ebike, Pls Help Verify Kit/Info Before I Buy

Post by DearDeathDay » Jun 01 2021 11:02am

E-HP wrote:
Jun 01 2021 10:12am
You've received a lot of solid information and advice already, but unfortunately, probably not what will lead you to success, given your budget and skills, and likely, tools. I'm assuming you don't own a DVM, crimpers, or soldering iron, but correct me it I'm wrong. My advice to you is to buy everything together, including the battery, in one kit that fits into your $600 budget.

Forget anything about building your own wheel (since you don't have bicycle knowledge or tools), or buying battery separate from a kit. You don't have what you need to go that direction, unless you have a separate budget for tools and miscellaneous parts. Mixing and matching will introduce more than you can handle at this point.

For the kit, keep in mind your upgrade path for the future. You've posted links to all kinds of motors, geared and direct drive, so maybe do some research on what you want in the long run, since you'll likely replace the battery before the motor, if your starting point is a cheap all-in kit. That and the controller will likely be upgraded before the motor. At your budget level, the battery will be a crap or crap+ rating anyway, so look more closely at the rest of the kit.

You'll be able to ride around with that set up for a while before you figure out if you need more, and what more you need.

My bike started with about a $650 investment, not including my old mountain bike donor. That was with an upgraded controller and display ($100), since I could see the kit controller was crappy, a couple of throttles (tried a couple of options) and buying the battery separately. Since I already had tools, I could deal with changing out connectors and troubleshooting the phase and hall wire connections, etc. I also already had experience with bicycles and electronic components. The bike worked great and met all of my expectations, until my expectations grew.

Good luck!
That's pretty solid advice! The only thing I have access to on that list a soldering iron but I'll be the first to admit my experience with it basically amounts to nothing. I'm totally willing how to learn to, for example, put a tire together. However you are correct in that I have not budgeted separately for an egregious amount of random tools. I totally want to learn how to do all those things you listed but jumping headfirst into the depths would... probably not be the best idea, to say the least. Building a battery is out of the question but would getting one separately be bad? As long as the battery has the right kind of connector it should just be able to, well, plug in and... work?

You are correct that I don't know much about what kind of motor I should be getting. The most common thing I have found for cheap is a "gearless brushless hub motor." I know starting with gears is maybe a bad idea because I have no frame of reference for shifting gears. And I know brushless is better because it requires less maintenance than a brushed motor. I think a "gearless brushless hub motor" is a direct drive motor? However, some of the sketchier kits I have found just don't list the actual motor anywhere so its a bit hard for me to properly figure out what I'm looking at.

I have definitely started to look at the individual parts of the kit a bit closely. For example, I know that the more magnets on the PAS sensor the better because they relate to the sensitivity of the system... or something. I also figured out that the throttle is mostly a preference thing and that even the high end kits usually have one that is suspiciously identical to the cheapest available. I've learned that (most? all?) motors can be essentially overclocked (for a short time) and that the listed watts is usually the constant power and not the peak output. I've learned that I could probably get away with riding a 3000w motor as long as I don't go over the 28mph speed limit and pedal quite furiously. Realistically, I'll still be looking at sub 1000w, probably closer to 500w, to stay within the cheaper side of the battery spectrum with 36v batteries. I've learned that I don't need a fancy display by any stretch but that having a setup that can handle regenerative braking will extend the life of my bike pads way more than it extends the length of my trip. Further, I should keep my battery under 80% charge and never discharge it "completely" to maximally extend its lifetime (but that isn't necessary).

The main thing I've picked up on is that $600 is going to get me a low tier bike that I should handle carefully.
I definitely still have a lot to learn tho!

The safest choice does appear to be just getting a kit that has everything all in one place. However, I am interested in learning about every part of the kit. If I do find that riding the ebike is something I'd like to continue then I can foresee myself learning what those acronyms you mentioned stand for...

All in all, thank you for your kind words! Every bit of wisdom I can aggregate will hopefully bring me closer to making the right choice!

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Re: My 1st ebike, Pls Help Verify Kit/Info Before I Buy

Post by DearDeathDay » Jun 01 2021 11:14am

RunForTheHills wrote:
Jun 01 2021 11:01am
It sounds like you have your budget figured out. Go ahead and do it. You will make mistakes and learn from the experience and the next upgrades or new build will be closer to what you want. Some money will be "wasted" as you will not like something about the bike and want to upgrade it. That is part of the process even if you have an unlimited budget.
Budgetwise? Yeah, pretty much. A decent concern of mine is avoiding making any stupid mistakes only a beginner could... Which obviously I will never 100% be able to avoid... Your statement is another one I definitely can't argue with. I could do all the research in the world and still make mistakes because of a lack of real world experience. I half wish that doing an ebike conversion wasn't so variable. Like, if there was a post somewhere that listed different (safe) options that weren't so expensive. I guess half the fun is doing the research myself anyways.

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Re: My 1st ebike, Pls Help Verify Kit/Info Before I Buy

Post by RunForTheHills » Jun 01 2021 11:18am

DearDeathDay wrote:
Jun 01 2021 11:02am

You are correct that I don't know much about what kind of motor I should be getting. The most common thing I have found for cheap is a "gearless brushless hub motor." I know starting with gears is maybe a bad idea because I have no frame of reference for shifting gears. And I know brushless is better because it requires less maintenance than a brushed motor. I think a "gearless brushless hub motor" is a direct drive motor? However, some of the sketchier kits I have found just don't list the actual motor anywhere so its a bit hard for me to properly figure out what I'm looking at.
A geared hub motor has internal gears to allow the motor to operate at a more optimal RPM. Geared hub motors are generally smaller and lighter than direct drive motors. They also usually have a clutch to make them easier to pedal or coast when not under battery power. Direct drive motors do not have a clutch. You don't shift the gears on the motor, they only have the one gear ratio. You shift the gears on the bike for your human power input only. What kind of bike are you putting the kit on if you do not have experience shifting gears? Direct drive motors can dissipate more heat and don't have nylon gears that can melt, so they can take more power and abuse. Because they don't have a clutch, you can use regen braking with a direct drive motor.

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Re: My 1st ebike, Pls Help Verify Kit/Info Before I Buy

Post by Chalo » Jun 01 2021 11:19am

"Gearless brushless hub motor" doesn't refer to gears that can be shifted or changed in any way. It only refers to the alternate kind of hub motor that features reduction gears to allow the electric motor to run faster than the wheel. Most geared motors also have an overrunning clutch so you can coast freely without applying power.

"Gearless" motors are direct drive, with the stationary part of the motor attached to the bike frame, and the rotating part of the motor attached to the wheel. They're simple and durable, but heavier, and they drag on the bike when unpowered.

I really appreciate a below-retail deal. Unfortunately, in this game at the moment, getting that kind of deal means figuring out a bunch of different elements that you're not familiar with yet, so you can build a system from separate components. Starting with a basic kit that's all set up to work together is probably the best way to get what you want within your budget constraints. It just doesn't leave a lot of room for a good battery.
This is to express my gratitude to Justin of Grin Technologies for his extraordinary measures to save this forum for the benefit of all.

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Re: My 1st ebike, Pls Help Verify Kit/Info Before I Buy

Post by DearDeathDay » Jun 01 2021 11:55am

RunForTheHills wrote:
Jun 01 2021 11:18am
A geared hub motor has internal gears to allow the motor to operate at a more optimal RPM. Geared hub motors are generally smaller and lighter than direct drive motors. They also usually have a clutch to make them easier to pedal or coast when not under battery power. Direct drive motors do not have a clutch. You don't shift the gears on the motor, they only have the one gear ratio. You shift the gears on the bike for your human power input only. What kind of bike are you putting the kit on if you do not have experience shifting gears? Direct drive motors can dissipate more heat and don't have nylon gears that can melt, so they can take more power and abuse. Because they don't have a clutch, you can use regen braking with a direct drive motor.
Ahh, I guess I totally misunderstood how the internal motor gears worked! I have a 21 speed bike right now so I do, in fact, have experience switching gears. For some reason I was internally relating it to shifting gears in a car? I guess its all kind of the same?
Chalo wrote:
Jun 01 2021 11:19am
"Gearless brushless hub motor" doesn't refer to gears that can be shifted or changed in any way. It only refers to the alternate kind of hub motor that features reduction gears to allow the electric motor to run faster than the wheel. Most geared motors also have an overrunning clutch so you can coast freely without applying power.

"Gearless" motors are direct drive, with the stationary part of the motor attached to the bike frame, and the rotating part of the motor attached to the wheel. They're simple and durable, but heavier, and they drag on the bike when unpowered.

I really appreciate a below-retail deal. Unfortunately, in this game at the moment, getting that kind of deal means figuring out a bunch of different elements that you're not familiar with yet, so you can build a system from separate components. Starting with a basic kit that's all set up to work together is probably the best way to get what you want within your budget constraints. It just doesn't leave a lot of room for a good battery.
What do you mean by they "drag on the bike when unpowered" -like, do they cause some kind of mechanical issue or do you just mean that they area a lot heavier so they weigh the bike down?

And yeah, a kit is most likely my best bet. Even with that as a starting place there are still waaaay too may of them. Picking the right one hasn't been easy so far.

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Re: My 1st ebike, Pls Help Verify Kit/Info Before I Buy

Post by goatman » Jun 01 2021 12:00pm

i started with a kit like the first link in your thread

https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B07M6 ... 62GS&psc=1

with a (T12) stamp on the motor

the battery only lasted 1 season, so i learned how to take apart that battery and put new cells in it, theres only 52 cells in it, you can put good brand name cells in it for cheap.

the controller and display worked fine til i wanted more speed and put a 15s battery to it. 63volts killed them both :D

when i took apart the controller to see if i could fix it, its fully potted and waterproof

the motor still worked, just had to buy a used controller and cycle analyst off of craigslist for peanuts really

$600 upfront but every month youre saving money on these things, and youre getting out the door and exploring areas everyone else zips past in their cars for free
the only time i drive now is when i have to.

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Re: My 1st ebike, Pls Help Verify Kit/Info Before I Buy

Post by Chalo » Jun 01 2021 12:21pm

DearDeathDay wrote:
Jun 01 2021 11:55am
What do you mean by they "drag on the bike when unpowered" -like, do they cause some kind of mechanical issue or do you just mean that they area a lot heavier so they weigh the bike down?
Neither. A direct drive hub motor is a big ring of copper coils and laminated steel plates, surrounded by powerful magnets that rotate when the wheel turns. Moving a magnet past magnetic and conductive material like that causes physical resistance. If you raise a normal bike wheel up off the ground and give it a little spin with your hand, if everything is working correctly it should keep going for a minute or so. A direct drive hub motor wheel usually won't even keep turning for a second.

If you use a direct drive hub motor, you have to work against that resistance whenever you pedal the bike without applying motor power. It's like working against an underinflated tire or a rubbing brake pad.
This is to express my gratitude to Justin of Grin Technologies for his extraordinary measures to save this forum for the benefit of all.

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Re: My 1st ebike, Pls Help Verify Kit/Info Before I Buy

Post by DearDeathDay » Jun 01 2021 1:50pm

goatman wrote:
Jun 01 2021 12:00pm
i started with a kit like the first link in your thread

https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B07M6 ... 62GS&psc=1

with a (T12) stamp on the motor

the battery only lasted 1 season, so i learned how to take apart that battery and put new cells in it, theres only 52 cells in it, you can put good brand name cells in it for cheap.

the controller and display worked fine til i wanted more speed and put a 15s battery to it. 63volts killed them both :D

when i took apart the controller to see if i could fix it, its fully potted and waterproof

the motor still worked, just had to buy a used controller and cycle analyst off of craigslist for peanuts really

$600 upfront but every month youre saving money on these things, and youre getting out the door and exploring areas everyone else zips past in their cars for free
the only time i drive now is when i have to.
Your battery only lasted one season? That's pretty terrible as they should last a few years at least and way longer if they are well taken care of! I'm glad you could sort it out anyways tho! Its pretty cool that you have the expertise to work with the parts like that... hopefully I will too someday!
Chalo wrote:
Jun 01 2021 12:21pm
Neither. A direct drive hub motor is a big ring of copper coils and laminated steel plates, surrounded by powerful magnets that rotate when the wheel turns. Moving a magnet past magnetic and conductive material like that causes physical resistance. If you raise a normal bike wheel up off the ground and give it a little spin with your hand, if everything is working correctly it should keep going for a minute or so. A direct drive hub motor wheel usually won't even keep turning for a second.

If you use a direct drive hub motor, you have to work against that resistance whenever you pedal the bike without applying motor power. It's like working against an underinflated tire or a rubbing brake pad.
Ooooh, so that's why some motors are advertised as being able to be pedaled normally? I rode on a flat tire (unknowingly) for a while once... then some kind passerby inflated my tires for me... So I know first hand that isn't very fun! Definitely a workout tho... Maybe I can find something that isn't DD then? Then again, in an ideal world my battery would never be low enough that I should be pedaling on my own...

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Re: My 1st ebike, Pls Help Verify Kit/Info Before I Buy

Post by markz » Jun 01 2021 4:19pm

Cheap batteries dont last long.
You may have been lied to on how the battery was built, you may have been promised 2021 Ferrari 18650's and were actually sold 1972 Ford Pinto 18650's as a battery because you trusted a no name battery seller to save a few pennies and you are left with paying more then double because the second battery is sold by a reputable seller/builder and costs more then the cheap battery you got to save a few pennies.

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Re: My 1st ebike, Pls Help Verify Kit/Info Before I Buy

Post by goatman » Jun 01 2021 5:31pm

ya the batteries are garbage but you replace them with 25r's, good,cheap and reliable

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Re: My 1st ebike, Pls Help Verify Kit/Info Before I Buy

Post by 99t4 » Jun 02 2021 2:36am

Dear DearDeathDay,

You posses tremendous writing skills. Very expressive. Way better than most of us. But what I am perceiving is that you lack mechanical skills, electronic, troubleshooting, tool usage, shop safety skills, etc. (Admittedly I could be wrong but that's what I perceive via your remarks and comments.)(Basically 0 necessary skills.) Therefore it's going to be very difficult for you by yourself to piece together a reliable safe system given your budget.

Can you find someone local that has the necessary skills, maybe an auto-electric mechanic or similar hobbyist to help you, and work out a trade? Can you find a local park or field where the RC (Remote Control) folks fly their RC planes or run their RC cars or boats? They would most likely be great at putting together your e-bike.

For example, when I need to do some important writing I get my daughter to help (she's a fantastic writer like you) and I fix her car or change the oil or whatever, things she can't do. Works out way better for both of us.

Not trying to discourage you because given enough time and training (and $$$) yes you can get there and do it all yourself but is that the most efficient way?

Just making suggestions to keep you safe, sincerely not wanting you to create an inadvertent fireworks show :kff: while changing out some connectors trying to hook up a cheap battery from x to a cheap controller from y.

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