CroBorg Super Commuter

General Discussion about electric bicycles.
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Alan B   100 GW

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Re: CroBorg Commuter

Post by Alan B » Sep 07 2013 11:35pm

BMS and Charge Controlling

Was sad to hear that Methods is dropping his HVC/LVC boards. I have those in my Borg but have not tested the HVC/LVC/charge control part.

I've been reconsidering some of the designs I've done in this area. I don't have the time right now to build a BMS, but I can do a bit of work on my plan for later on.

The new commercialized version of the Greyborg looks great. With ebike to motorcycle power (250W - 12KW), fingerprint e-lock, and other amazing features. See http://www.greyp-bikes.com/ . The DIY Greyborg products will also continue. See http://greyb.org/greyborg-warp.html .

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Re: CroBorg Commuter

Post by wojtek » Sep 08 2013 12:46am

may i ask which Hella horns are you looking at?

the commercial one is definitely inspiring ES, even a new thread was created for it: http://endless-sphere.com/forums/viewto ... =3&t=53255
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Re: CroBorg Commuter

Post by Alan B » Sep 08 2013 6:06am

I was looking at the Hella Supertone horns, the two horn set. In one review they were the loudest, but they are not small at 5.5" diameter.

Thanks for the link to the ES Greyp thread, had read it but didn't dig up the reference.

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Re: CroBorg Commuter

Post by wojtek » Sep 08 2013 6:54am

i have been using airzound horns so far but these 2 horns do look sexy! good choice!
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BATMOBILE - Astro 3220 / Nuvinci in progress
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Alan B   100 GW

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Re: CroBorg Commuter

Post by Alan B » Sep 08 2013 7:05am

The Airzounds are great (especially considering their light weight and low price), I used mine twice on Thursday's morning commute. I rode past 6+ miles of slow cars on that morning, pretty much my whole highway commute section. The cars I honked at were encroaching on the bike lane. The end of summer vacation combined with the new Bay Bridge has destroyed vehicular commuting speed. :)

The Airzound is a single note, the Hella's reportedly are dissonant and so more noticeable.

When passing bicycles I use a bell, but to alert cars takes a lot higher sound pressure. Having both is very useful for a commuter. A bicycle commuter I know had to scream at a car to keep it from crossing his path, and they heard him and stopped but he still glanced off the car and damaged his bike frame (though better than full on crashing into it). A good horn could be a life saver.

I need to remember to pump up my Airzound.

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Re: CroBorg Commuter

Post by Alan B » Sep 08 2013 11:52pm

I checked Hobbyking tonite and they had the lipo at the US Warehouse I need to upgrade this Borg to 24S. I already have the controller, so this is the next step. Batteries incoming. :)

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Re: CroBorg Commuter

Post by wojtek » Sep 09 2013 2:17pm

Alan B wrote:Have been looking at DC-DC converters. Saw a nice one the other day, a Sevcon, that will work from 60-100V at 24 amps / 300 watts. Potted for high vibration and moist environments, and with a low current remote on/off input.

The Hella horns I'm looking at draw 5.5 amps each, and normally operate in a pair with two different notes, so need 11 amps for that, plus 4 amps for the heated vest, plus lights and miscellany. So 24 amps is not all that excessive.

I am not sure how big and how expensive the dc dc is.. but if you are going for 24s, then the ac dc 12v power supply might be a way to go. I even found in the basement old power supply wired for 12 and 5v and it works sweet! now im converting all my battery juiced lights to be powered from the main pack via power supplies.
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Velokraft e-VK3 SOLD
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Re: CroBorg Commuter

Post by LSBW » Sep 09 2013 5:55pm

My Banshee screamer will trip my 12V 57Amp server power supply. Only way to run it is by using 3 or more Li-Ion elements.
No dc-dc doohickey for me :(

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Re: CroBorg Commuter

Post by Alan B » Sep 10 2013 12:16am

The laptop 12V supplies I found were 3-4 amps max. I would like to have 4 for the vest, 4 for lighting, and 11 for the horn. That's almost 20 amps.

Another nice option is to use a 4S A123M1 cell pack. This would handle the short term high current loads well, but would need to be recharged and might run down especially with a heated vest running from it.

The dc-dc converter I mentioned will handle 300 watts or 24 amps which is pretty adequate for most things. Plus it is rugged and moisture proof.

I'm going to wait until I get a bit farther to see how much space I have. I plan to move the controller out of the frame and add batteries plus a pair of the LED power supplies for onboard charging, plus a few other odds and ends. Not sure how the space will go.

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Re: CroBorg Commuter

Post by Alan B » Sep 14 2013 9:27pm

Today I installed a dual mode smoke alarm (ionization and photoelectric) right over the ebike in the Garage. Anyone who hasn't done that yet should get on with it.

I'd like to find a small smoke alarm and install it under the covers inside the Borg. Anyone seen any?

Yesterday a box containing four of the 6S 5AH Turnigy packs arrived. Another piece in the 24S upgrade. :)

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Re: CroBorg Commuter

Post by wojtek » Sep 15 2013 2:28am

http://www.amazon.de/mumbi-Rauchmelder- ... auchmelder

7cm dia, 3,2cm high

im sure you can find even smaller ones :)
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BATMOBILE - Astro 3220 / Nuvinci in progress
Giant CRS Alliance - yes, just pushbike! frock you..
3Element Espire - SOLD
Custom built Specialized BigHit with BBS02 - SOLD
Velokraft e-VK3 SOLD
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Alan B   100 GW

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Re: CroBorg Commuter

Post by Alan B » Sep 15 2013 6:06am

wojtek wrote:http://www.amazon.de/mumbi-Rauchmelder- ... auchmelder

7cm dia, 3,2cm high

im sure you can find even smaller ones :)
Thanks for looking, I did look on Amazon (US).

Those are pretty large for inside the bike housing, and I don't see anything that small in Amazon US. I would like something maybe double or triple the volume of the 9V battery. :)

I did find a portable travel smoke alarm built in to a Flashlight though, interesting idea. We can always use another Flashlight. :)

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Re: CroBorg Commuter

Post by wojtek » Sep 15 2013 7:33am

I really like the idea of putting it inside the canopy!

http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Status-Miniat ... 4897.l4275

no dimensions but uses 3 x lithium button cell CR2450

but not for outdoor use.. not sure if it would feel like home under the greyborg canopy ;)

worlds smallest detector but they dont say the measurements :)
http://www.cavius.co.nz/product/5-year-smoke-detector/

http://www.fireangel.co.uk/Smoke-Alarms ... -602R.aspx
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KMX Cobra with Xlyte 5403
Go-One Evo with Cromotor
BATMOBILE - Astro 3220 / Nuvinci in progress
Giant CRS Alliance - yes, just pushbike! frock you..
3Element Espire - SOLD
Custom built Specialized BigHit with BBS02 - SOLD
Velokraft e-VK3 SOLD
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Scorpion FS HS3540-SOLD
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Re: CroBorg Commuter

Post by Alan B » Sep 18 2013 11:09am

The environment under the canopy is pretty tame, good place for an indoor detector as long as rainwater is directed away and the bike stored indoors. If it sat out in the rain it would be humid or wet.

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Re: CroBorg Commuter

Post by Alan B » Sep 21 2013 12:10pm

Another clean sweep, ebike commuted all week. :)

Between the ebike and our new Prius V, my 4Runner has not been driven in weeks. Tank of fuel lasts a long time this way. :)

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Re: CroBorg Commuter

Post by Alan B » Sep 25 2013 7:20pm

Testing a New Bike Light

I decided to try a new Fenix BT20 bike light. Thus far I've been running a Cycle Lumenator and a pair of "1000 lumen" MagicShine 808E lights. The Cycle Lumenator puts out a lot of light in a wide pattern, but doesn't reach far ahead, and cruising on the bike lane along the highway I need a bit more reach to compete with various situations to be able to see adequately. I have a lens on one of the MagicShines that spreads the beam out horizontally, and I aim that one down and to the right to illuminate ahead and to the right in close where I need to see obstructions and animals on and near the road. I've twice had injured deer present a potential hazard just off the roadway. The other MagicShine is directed ahead and is more of a long range "high beam", which I can tip down when there are oncoming vehicles.

I've heard complaints about the MagicShine bothering oncoming drivers (but have not received complaints myself), so I've been on the lookout for bike lights that have a more vehicle friendly patterned output. There is not much available in the bike world. The Fenix BT10 and BT20 claim to have shaped beams, and they have a couple of features intended to accomplish this. One is a partially smooth and partially orange peel reflector, designed to soften the main beam. The other is a partial fresnel lens at the top of the light that directs upward light down and onto the pavement at close range, reducing glare for oncoming drivers and increasing close in lighting for road obstructions.

I did some white wall testing, and some outdoor testing. The beam colors are different, and the patterns are different, but it is hard to be sure the Fenix is better with close in testing. More testing is indicated. The MagicShine with the wide angle lens is quite nice for close in with its pattern stretched in the horizontal direction. The standard MagicShine is more of a flashlight pattern with a strong central beam and a bright spill that is circular and large. The Fenix spill pattern is smaller and there is a tail below the central beam that helps to illuminate the close in pavement.

The MagicShine battery has 4 18650 cells in 2S2P in a sealed battery pack. The Fenix has a battery case that holds two 18650 loose cells in series which must be removed for charging, and the charger is not included (nor are the batteries). The Fenix can use four of the CR123 non rechargeable cells if you prefer, or in a pinch. Both packs are about 7-8 volts but the MagicShine pack has twice the amp-hour capacity. MagicShine pack straps on the bike directly, and the Fenix pack drops into a cordura nylon case that straps on the bike.

The MagicShines claim 1,000 lumens and the Fenix claims 750. The light output of the Fenix may be slightly higher than the MagicShine, but they are not significantly different. Fenix rates their lumen output at the front of the light whereas MagicShine may rate it at the LED or pull it from the LED spec sheet and not account for various reality losses. Car headlights are 1,000-2,000 lumens each. So running four of these 750-1,000 lumen bike headlights is similar to a pair of car headlamps.

The Fenix has four level settings, the MagicShine has 3. Both have led charge level indicators. Both lights use similar connectors, but the sex is opposite, making it possible to plug the two batteries together which would be a bad thing.

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Re: CroBorg Commuter

Post by Alan B » Sep 25 2013 11:06pm

Early Field Results on Fenix BT20

Just returned from a short on-bike lighting test. I set up the Fenix straight ahead, and the MagicShine 808E with spreading lens pointed slightly to the right. Both lights were pointed slightly down. I set it up in a dark corner of our court and tested it up and down the street a few blocks. The streetlights are dim enough that you could clearly see the bike lights. The Cycle Lumenator was kept off.

The Fenix was clearly brighter than the MagicShine. The pattern of the Fenix was up and down, lighting far away in a wide hotspot and downward, a very useful pattern for a bicycle light. The spreader lens equipped MagicShine throws a horizontal band - a hotspot much wider than it is high. I positioned this to start at the edge of the Fenix and light to the right. This way I get the road in front of the wheel and on out, plus the right hand side and gutter. The spill going to the left is much dimmer than the beams, but it is still enough to see close in.

Fenix Plusses

Pushbutton is easier to actuate and downward so it tends to not move the light. (The MagicShine is to the rear and moves the light making it harder to operate).

Fenix when off has indicators lit. The MagicShine indicator runs all the time, draining the battery.

In summary, I like the Fenix BT20 better than I expected to from earlier off-bike testing. More testing will be required, but it did a reasonable job of lighting up both distance and close.

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Re: CroBorg Commuter

Post by chroot » Sep 26 2013 2:47pm

Howdy, Have you tried using Solarforce flashlight, and I have 2 of solarforce L2P model with upgrade the Manafont Ultrafire drop-in XM-L P60 host. It cost me 40 dollars for both and these really throw far away PLUS floody similar Cycle Lumenator.

My solarforce flashlight has 3 modes Low, Med and High and This P60 host drop in rated 1000 lumen but more likely 800 lumen or so. Two flashlight combo are good enough and I can see far ahead and wide (floody). I got incoming vehicle flashed to warn me many times that my flashlight blinded them. :D
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Re: CroBorg Commuter

Post by Alan B » Sep 26 2013 11:12pm

Sounds like a great flashlight.

I'm trying not to blind drivers coming at me, they might accidentally come into my lane. :shock:

And Now for the Bad News

Today I had a nice (though a bit cool) commute to work, and was about to stop at the building when BZZZZZZZZZ. The tire was rubbing on the chain tensioner (if we are generous enough to call that mechanism such a refined name). The tire was rubbing it since it had just gone flat. Nice place to get a flat, but shucks.

Found a finishing nail plunged fully into tread center.

So I get to change a tube this weekend. I got a ride home and will take the truck and rack to get the machine tomorrow.

So heck. Another day in the life of an ebiker. :D

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Re: CroBorg Commuter

Post by zombiess » Sep 26 2013 11:57pm

Hey Alan, I just started my own build thread if you want to check it out. I decided to go with 19" MC wheels and will be running dual sport Shinko 2.75x19 SR244 tires. From what I have read these are 60/40 street/dirt vs the 241 which is slightly more dirt oriented. I'm planning on running 18S LiPo, don't see much of a need to have a top speed > 45mph since I know most of my riding will be at 10-20mph unless I am lucky enough to start commuting on it.

Sorry to hear about that nail, do you think you would have made it to work if you were running bicycle tires/tubes? Might have had a shot at changing them on the side of the road, but I'll bet you would have had many many flats vs this one.

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Re: CroBorg Commuter

Post by Alan B » Sep 27 2013 11:45am

Great on your new build thread, here's a link for folks to easily find it:

http://endless-sphere.com/forums/viewto ... 6&p=803175


I think this tire went flat within a couple hundred yards, we have a lot of construction going on at work, and there is none along most of the rest of my commute except near home. That's where I got my other flat on these tires, near home. So I think that even these tires didn't allow me to go far with a nail.

With bike tires I believe I would have LOTS more flats. 2 flats in 4,000 miles is not bad, it was 1 flat in 4,000 miles before this one. :)

I go through lots of glass, and some rough pavement. I made one 20 mile loop the other day on the mountain ebike and now it has a slow leaking flat. The road crud is fierce on tires.

I'm running 18S Lipo 20 AH now and planning to go to 24S to get more AH capacity as there is not really room to add more parallel capacity but another series block is quite possible by relocating the controller outside the covers. I have approx 20/30/40 mph on speed switch fully charged now, and I generally run about 25 uphill and 29 level maximum speed. There are almost no stops on my commute, and very little traffic in my lane. :) So I'm not looking for more speed, but it will be fun for testing, but not used for on-street riding.

I wanted the smaller wheels for lots of hill climbing torque and good acceleration without stressing the controller. I do suffer a bit from the reduced ground clearance, scraping pedals regularly. Controller is set for about 70A peak, don't see that for long. :)

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Re: CroBorg Commuter

Post by zombiess » Sep 27 2013 12:13pm

You will most likely notice a large increase in acceleration once you go to 24S, that's a big jump.

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Re: CroBorg Commuter

Post by Alan B » Sep 27 2013 12:43pm

My current plan is to set things up for 60A peak at 24S. I may be hitting as much as 80A peak now at 18S. So I don't really want enough acceleration to lift the front wheel easily. What would you recommend for that?

Right now the front suspension unloads but the wheel doesn't lift. If I pedal hard the front wheel just bounces off the pavement during the midband power peak. Fun but very safe. :)

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Re: CroBorg Commuter

Post by zombiess » Sep 27 2013 2:02pm

Increase your front spring rate so you store less energy, slow your rebound on the front fork and reduce the compression on the rear to prevent weight transfer.

Or just twist the throttle slower :D

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Re: CroBorg Commuter

Post by chroot » Sep 27 2013 5:33pm

You dont have to blind the drivers coming at you and just use common sense adjust the torch. I happened set 2 flashlight at low setting little high aim cause blind driver so I had to re-adjust after that no problem. I am saying this flashlight kickass buck in the bang. :D
Alan B wrote:Sounds like a great flashlight.

I'm trying not to blind drivers coming at me, they might accidentally come into my lane. :shock:
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