LightningRods mid drive kit

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This includes R/C motors, botttom bracket, roller and geared drives.
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Re: LightningRods mid drive kit

Post by LightningRods » Jan 08 2018 3:49pm

A. If I remember from when I was checking the Cyclone out to see if I was interested in it (I wasn’t) the planetary reduction is around 6:1. The primary stage of reduction on my standard mid drives ranges from 3:1 to 5:1 depending on which combination of sprockets or pulleys you use.

B. You can buy a Lightning Rods drive from me. PM me here, or go to my online store. lightning-rods10.mybigcommerce.com
Bullfrog wrote:
Jan 08 2018 11:57am

A. What is the overall reduction between the motor and the output shaft of the Lightning Rod Small Block and the Cyclone (if you know it)?

B. Where can I buy the lightning rod kits?
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Re: LightningRods mid drive kit

Post by LightningRods » Jan 08 2018 4:02pm

I really like belt drive, a lot, but there are limitations. Trying to get 8:1 reduction in one stage is really difficult with a belt. Getting big reduction in one stage requires a big difference between the driver and driven. This means teensy driver and huge driven. Small drivers have fewer teeth engaged in the belt and are more prone to skipping under load. Using a huge driven opens up the angle of the belt and disengages even more teeth. You can use idlers and other tricks to mitigate some of this but there is still a limit. Going to a coarse tooth pitch like an M8 to increase the torque capacity of the belt just aggravates the huge size of the driven pulley. An M8 pulley is more than 50% larger than an M5.

My personal dream swingarm drive is a two stage belt. 25mm wide M8 GT2 with a low 2:1 first stage and 4:1 second stage for 8:1 overall.

Motorcycles have more room in the frame and swingarm for belt drives because they don’t have to worry about clearing the swing arm with the crank swings or maintaining a Q-factor that won’t turn riders into bow legged cowboys.

I’m with the belt fans on clean, quiet operation, low maintenance and long life.
Powervelocity.com wrote:
Jan 08 2018 1:25pm
Making this a one stage belt drive would be perfect in my book, but I understand the challenges retrofitting a wider belt on existing frames. Keeping it very simple, with as few gears as possible.

A custom swingarm could be the way to go. Actually, a custom swingarm with a belt drive compatible with most frames is what I am thinking.
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Re: LightningRods mid drive kit

Post by Powervelocity.com » Jan 08 2018 7:42pm

Yep, will have to ditch the pedals to accommodate the belt.

Gotta be a reason belts are used on gas-powered motorcycles with great success. Electric motors are not that much different from this perspective. Well, minus transmission. All we need is transfer the torque from the motor to the wheel and make sure to gear it in the way that it will spin in the most efficient RPM range at least 50% of the time (thinking cruising speed of 40 mph).

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Re: LightningRods mid drive kit

Post by LightningRods » Jan 08 2018 8:08pm

That’s a pretty perfect illustration. In the case of the Zero S motorcycle the controller draws 550 amps and the final drive ratio is only 4.6:1. So massive torque and relatively little reduction. With a 28 tooth M8 driver the Zero’s belt can take a lot of power. That idler on the slack side improves the belt angle at the driver and engages more teeth.

Getting rid of the pedals and making it a motorcycle makes it easy. The frame and swingarm can be as wide as necessary.
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Re: LightningRods mid drive kit

Post by Hellscreeper » Jan 24 2018 11:43am

Hey Lightning rods,
I like the look of your new two stage mid drive. I like i so much. I want to buy it for my new built with red internal plates and black chain ring and external plates in anodized aluminum parts.
My frame is a knolly delirium-t 2008. Can you show me if the mid drive can fit on the bike and what he look like with your mid drive on.
Thanks in advance!
Luc

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Re: LightningRods mid drive kit

Post by LightningRods » Jan 24 2018 12:30pm

Hi Luc,

I did a couple of Photoshop composites to scale. The 2 stage drive fits your bike great.

Image

Part of the fitment test is to bottom the front forks and see if the tire still clears. You have good clearance.

Image

The mounting plates are aluminum and can be anodized pretty much any color you want. The chainwheel and reduction sprockets are stainless steel for better wear than aluminum. I've read that there is a blackening chemical for stainless steel but I haven't tried it.

Thanks for writing! I'm glad that you like the drive. It's working really well. Are you thinking Small Block or Big Block?
Mike
"I don’t mind that they stole my idea, I mind that they don’t have any of their own.”
-Nikola Tesla

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Re: LightningRods mid drive kit

Post by Hellscreeper » Jan 24 2018 1:17pm

Wow! Thanks for the ultra fast answer. That going to be a nice match.

The small block 3000w motor will be enough power for my need, im going to use a 52v battery in a back pack.
Im not ready to buy it right now. but i want to buy a ready to run plug and play setup with 12fets controller and a cycle analyst v3.

I want something special if that possible, can you make me some machined red aluminum braket to fix the controller to the down tube in front of the motor and maybe a plate box to hide the wires between the controller and the motor.
Thanks!
Luc

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Re: LightningRods mid drive kit

Post by Hellscreeper » Jan 24 2018 1:30pm

here a picture of my bike, i got a 24inch rear wheel and 26 front. I dont know the speed i can get with a 24 rear wheel? but with a bigger rear drive chainring i like to attain 40kmh with a 11 tooths rear sproket. Is that possible? (sorry for my english)
IMG_20180122_143133160.jpg

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Re: LightningRods mid drive kit

Post by LightningRods » Jan 24 2018 2:39pm

We can make either a laser cut sheet aluminum front mount/controller mount or machine something out of billet aluminum.

Top speed is only dictated by the rear wheel sprocket if you want to be pedaling along at that speed. The cyclist's limited rpm is the issue with making a lot of speed. If you gear the electric motor to run faster rpm than you can pedal you could do 40km/hr on a 24t rear sprocket or whatever you decide. Running on the rear wheel 11t is not the best idea because it doesn't handle the torque of an electric motor very well.
"I don’t mind that they stole my idea, I mind that they don’t have any of their own.”
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Re: LightningRods mid drive kit

Post by Hellscreeper » Jan 24 2018 3:13pm

I realy want something like you described to mount my controller, money is not a problem i want something unique and cool looking.

I know the 11t sproket is not a good gear to use with a powerfull middrive. i ask about that to calculate the top-speed of the bike with a smaller rear wheel, i dont want a bike with 25kmh max speed. but if you can change the motor gearing directly on the drive to my taste, that mean more customisation i like that idea to choose my top speed.

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Re: LightningRods mid drive kit

Post by LightningRods » Jan 24 2018 5:36pm

There is a huge amount of flexibility in the gearing on the drive. I can gear the drive so that it will run to the power limit with your 24” rear wheel. On a small block @ 52v that will be around 55 kph.

Let me know when you’re ready. The closer we get to Spring and Summer the busier I’ll be.
"I don’t mind that they stole my idea, I mind that they don’t have any of their own.”
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Re: LightningRods mid drive kit

Post by Hellscreeper » Jan 24 2018 6:03pm

55kmh on the 11t seem to be perfect to me so i can go to 40kmh maybe between the 15 and the 17 tooths sprokets, and 10kmh on the 32t to climb trees lol.
I think im going to be ready to send you my first deposit or the total in 4 to 6 weeks. How much you ask for a deposit to start the fabrication?

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Re: LightningRods mid drive kit

Post by bchampig » Jan 24 2018 7:35pm

My winter project was designing some 3d printed covers for the LR single stage. I’m very happy with the result. Printed in PETG on a Prusa printer. Next, I’m working on a seatpost mounted battery holder for the 12S Lipos I run.
D300F021-2917-4B58-BA6A-6A03E11E87A3.jpeg
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Re: LightningRods mid drive kit

Post by spinningmagnets » Jan 24 2018 7:41pm

My winter project was designing some 3D printed covers for the LR single stage
Very professional looking! What design and slicer program did you use? I am considering learning Blender or Fusion 360...I haven't even taken my 3D printer out of its box...

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Re: LightningRods mid drive kit

Post by bchampig » Jan 24 2018 7:55pm

I taught myself Fusion 360. Still much to learn, but I fumbled my way through it. Can’t beat the price...free for hobbyists.

For a slicer, I use a combination of Slic3r, and Simplify3D. I wish I could settle on one, but they each have advantages.

thanks for the compliment on the bike....it was a ton of work.

regards,
Brian

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Re: LightningRods mid drive kit

Post by LightningRods » Jan 24 2018 8:26pm

Brian,
Really nice work! I have something similar planned for the sprocket guard. I’m going to stay completely behind the aluminum guard with the plastic but it will add sides to the guard as you have. Chain lube likes to fly off of the driver sprocket and make a mess.
I’ve been paying a friend to print my 3D models so that I can make molds of the patterns. I’m going to buy my own printer in the next couple of months. The quality keeps getting better and the price keeps coming down so I’ve been procrastinating. At some point you just have to jump in.
Thanks for sharing your work. I love to see people making creative improvements.
Mike
"I don’t mind that they stole my idea, I mind that they don’t have any of their own.”
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Re: LightningRods mid drive kit

Post by bchampig » Jan 24 2018 10:01pm

Thanks Mike,

I’m really enjoying the 3D printer. I got it right before Christmas specifically for making ebike parts. It has become a great hobby to get me through the New Hampshire winter. Like you, I have been following the 3d printer industry fir several years and finally felt the price/performance is now good enough to jump in. I will warn you...it is addicting!

I can’t wait to get out on the bike this Spring....it runs great with the 12fet controller. I’m still considering a bigger motor in the future. Do you still sell the midsize motor...the one between the small block and big block? That might be Ok with my current controller and give me a nice power boost. Also, have you tried a smaller chain than a 219? I’m wondering if a finer pitch setup would be strong enough and noticably quieter?

regards,
Brian

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Re: LightningRods mid drive kit

Post by anttipaa » May 07 2018 4:53am

Is it possible to get small block kit with torque sensing bottom bracket? Two stage small block with torque sensing pas would be perfect kit in my opinion!
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Re: LightningRods mid drive kit

Post by LightningRods » May 07 2018 9:33am

Yes PAS is an easy install on the two stage small block. I actually have two two stage bottom bracket drives now with at least one more coming very soon. The photo below shows my two stage "dogleg" drive that is great for downhill bikes with curved/extended front downtubes. PAS definitely fits on 68 and 73mm BBs on the left side. I'd have to see if there would be room for an 83mm.

Image

I designed a new PAS ring mount to work with the large diameter ISIS axles that I prefer for my mid drives. Previously the universal PAS rings only fit smaller diameter square taper axles.
Image

Here's the adapter installed on the ISIS axle.
Image

Now that Grin Tech has made so many auxiliary PAS controls available for the CA3, PAS is my favorite pedal controlled throttle. It does work great with my two stage small blocks.
"I don’t mind that they stole my idea, I mind that they don’t have any of their own.”
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Re: LightningRods mid drive kit

Post by izeman » May 07 2018 1:11pm

in case youself printed those: your nozzle is way too high. you need more squish for your first layer to get a decent surface.

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Re: LightningRods mid drive kit

Post by Drum » May 07 2018 1:50pm

Hi Mike,
Great work developing your drives.. I have been keeping up to date with your different drive arrangements over the years. Great to see the versatility of the basic unit with changes to the transmission details.
Like Anttipaa, I would also be interested to know if the controller can be integrated with a Torque Sensing bottom bracket (which is different to PAS / cadence sensing).
Riding bikes with torque sensing and "torque mode" controllers is safer and more natural feeling than bikes with PAS and "Speed mode" controller, because the motor's output is directly proportional to the force the rider is putting on the pedals.
PAS control adds a pre-set amount of power as soon as you start pedalling and keeps that power level regardless of changes in terrain, speed etc. With a 250 Watt motor that may be usable, but with a motor as powerful as yours, that is a crazy way to control a vehicle. However, with a torque sensing bottom bracket, even a relatively powerful motor will be controllable and enjoyable.
Some of the commercially available mid-drive motors have ISIS cranks and torque sensing and would be reliable even on a heavy-duty mountain bike.
Unfortunately, the only "stand-alone" torque sensing bottom brackets I have found use square taper shafts, (probably because there is not enough room to use stronger spindles within the standard bottom bracket diameter and still have room to fit the torque sensing gear, bearings etc). These might be strong enough for a sit-down bike, but I wouldn't trust them to hold up to my 90+kg standing on the pedals over rough ground and jumps.

I think the answer is: There will be a combination of Torque Sensor and controller (and maybe a Cycle Analyst) that can control any motor / drive system, including yours.
Something to keep in mind for the future.. your small block motor mated to a well tuned torque sensing control system would be fantastic fun to ride.. you would really feel like superman!

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Re: LightningRods mid drive kit

Post by anttipaa » May 07 2018 2:35pm

Yes I ment exactly what Drum sayd. Torque sensing would make this perfect. Normal cadence sensing PAS is not good enough. Right now there is only TSDZ2 kit and thats not made for rough offroad and does not have enough power. Maybe I just have to buy that and wait for good torque sensing bottom bracket that works with your kit.

Something like this cant be used? http://www.ebikes.ca/news/isis-bb/
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Re: LightningRods mid drive kit

Post by LightningRods » May 07 2018 3:34pm

Purely cadence based PAS is useless. With a powerful drive like even my small block, basically every time you start to pedal at all the drive takes off and leaves you clown pedaling. If the point of PAS is to get some exercise while extending battery range, pure PAS with no other controls accomplishes nothing except maybe on the puniest of 250w mid drives that barely make human power.

Where PAS really starts to work is when you add other parameter controls to it. Grin Tech has digital two button switches that allow as many as 20 presets of power and speed. You can absolutely fine tune how fast you go under PAS and how much effort you expend at that speed. Just in case 20 levels of power isn't enough adjustability, you can also connect an analogue potentiometer or 3 position switch to control other parameters at the same time. Here are some of the auxiliary parameter controls available: http://www.ebikes.ca/shop/electric-bicy ... input.html

Image

As far as feeling like Superman, there is a long, steep winding back road that leads to my house. Bicyclists love it because it's scenic and the traffic speeds are lower than the main streets. You constantly see cyclists standing up in first gear pumping away up this road. I can do 35 mph up that road which is faster than most of the auto traffic due to the tight turns. I use the two button switch to adjust the amount of assist that I get from the motor to get exactly the workout that I want. When I can choose exactly how fast I go, and how much exercise I get while maintaining that speed, that's all I want from pedal assist. If I want something outside of all of those other controls there is always the hand throttle.

Here is a video wherein Justin outlines the functions of the new parameters switches with the CA3 v3.1:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IU4qWSXtJUU
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Re: LightningRods mid drive kit

Post by Drum » May 07 2018 4:17pm

Thanks for that info Mike.
I hadn't realized that Justin had introduced such a comprehensive control setup which could be used to tame the PAS so well. I am sure it allows adequate control in many situations. And you are right, having a well set up throttle that can add to the PAS assist would help a lot as well.

However when riding narrow, twisting singletrack with sudden short steep sections, tree roots to climb over etc, torque sensing gives so much more.. without pushing any buttons, you can get a sudden burst of extra motor power just by pedalling harder, timed exactly when you want it, for as long as you want it but no more.

One of the issues I have experienced with PAS (maybe this has been improved as well on more recent control systems) is the way PAS keeps applying power for a second or so after you have stopped pedalling. That's long enough to get you into serious trouble (e.g push you off the side of the track) in certain situations if say you hit a rock and your front wheel gets kicked sideways. Stopping pedalling needs to immediately stop motor power, and that is what happens with torque sensing control.

So, different horses for different courses: for my usage and my preferences, I am hanging out for a strong torque sensing bottom bracket I can mate with a powerful mid-drive system. If you could offer this, possibly you would gain a few extra customers.

I have read that the ISIS bottom bracket from Grin only measures torque on one side (from one pedal) not both sides. I don't know if this is correct, but if it is two sided it might be the answer. One sided might not give fast enough response in some situations. Maybe I should try it out anyway. Mated to a CA, phaserunner controller and your small block motor it would be great!

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Re: LightningRods mid drive kit

Post by LightningRods » May 07 2018 5:48pm

I'd never use either PAS or torque sensing in technical off road situations or any situation where fine throttle control is important. The hand throttle is more immediate, both on and off, and offers far better throttle modulation than either of the other two. Using pedelec in a situation where poor throttle control could injure you is an odd choice.

The purposes of pedal throttles are to encourage the rider to pedal to get some exercise and to extend the range of the battery.
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