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Cycle Analyst V2.1 sneak preview, and call for beta testers

justin_le

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So I'm pretty much ready to release a new version of the Cycle Analyst firmware, at least in a beta phase. The original plan was to incrementally add various new features over the year for V2.1, 2.2, 2.3 etc. but when I got into upgrading the code a couple weeks ago, well I couldn't stop myself until almost everything was done. If you've opened up a unit and seen the row of unused pads on the bottom of the circuitboard, well they can now be brought to life. The various features will be summarized in the posts to follow.

Header Pin Descriptions.jpg

Justin
 
Serial Data Output

The extra small pad labeled TX is now enabled for serial data transmission, at 9600 baud, ascii formatted, tab seperated values which look like the following:

Ah V A S D
0.031 37.31 17.85 21.2 0.413
0.042 38.22 7.45 21.2 0.452
0.048 38.25 5.85 21.2 0.487

You can select whether the data rate is at 1Hz, suitable for general purpose data logging, for 5 Hz, which is fast enough to capture the dynamic response of an EV during acceleration and such, and do all kinds of vehicle performance analysis.

1 Hz Output.jpg



The output is 0-5V CMOS level, so directly compatible with other microchips, but to read it with a PC you would need an RS-232 level shifter. Fairly soon we'll be designing a plug-in circuit with a SUB-D connector on the end to allow for direct connectivity to a computer or PDA, and further down the line hope to offer an SD memory card writer, so you could ride around and all the trip data would be stored on a small memory chip.

Combined with the additional low voltage and current limiting features of the CA, this allows for some interesting possibilities. For instance, you could purchase an inexpensive bicycle trainer stand and use it as a stationary load for your ebike, then completely discharge the battery pack at constant current by running the hub motor on the stand, with the CA recording the discharge profile on a PC and maintaining the constant current discharge. No need for massive load banks, and you can test up to 100V or 200V battery packs without even removing them from the vehicle.
 
The additional pad labelled 'Vi' is an auxiliary voltage input. This input can be configured to scale either the speed limit or the current limit, from 0 up to the max value that has been programmed into the CA.

Aux Off.jpg
Aux Amps.jpg
View attachment 2


One obvious use for this is to use to wire a potentiometer to the pad, and have a knob for simple adjustment of the speed or current limit, so that you don't have to enter the setup menu and go through all the button pressing just to change it.

Aux Pot.jpg

Another application would be for the rider to actually use this as a kind of 'throttle interceptor'. The user's throttle goes to the CA, then the Cycle Analyst takes this as a desired speed or current that the user wants. The CA sends its own signal to the motor controller via the 'Th' pad in order to achieve that speed or current. So instantly your throttle becomes a cruise control, or a power control, for the vehicle. In expectation of this use, the Vi input range is default to 1-4V, allowing for taking the signal directly from hall effect throttles, although that range can be tweaked.

 
In addition to the above things, there were some upgrades to the base code base as well:

Presetting the Odometer and Lifetime Ahr Accumulator

It is now possible to preload the life-cycle values into the unit, so people replacing original bicycle computers or similar devices can transfer that information over to their Cycle Analyst.

Odometer Preset.jpg

Increased Ah and Distance Ranges

The amp-hour, watt-hour, and distance accumulators have all been increased by a factor of 10. So in a given trip you can go up to 1,999 km or miles, draw up to 1999 amp-hours from the battery, or use 19,999 watt-hours of power. In high range mode, both the Ah and Wh are increased by yet another factor of 10, so 20,000 Ah and 200,000 Wh.

Support up to 99 Poles

The maximum number of poles has been increased from 14 all the way to 99 , since a lot of the newer hub motors seem to have upped the number of magnets substantially.

View attachment 1
 
Built in current throttle, nice!
 
I'm looking for people who want to be beta testers, and who are very explicitly interested in trying out and using either the data logging or on-the-fly speed/current limiting features above. If this is you and you already have a Cycle Analyst, then that can simply be shipped back here and I will reprogram it for free. Alternately, I have made up a small number of units having large display screens with enclosures and waterproof tactile switch button and all. These are in-development prototypes for a larger EV sized meter, not something that will become production ready for many more months, but I have exactly 8 units made up that I'll offer for the same rate of $150 with the V2.1 Beta code.

Large Format CA.jpg

In either case, if you want to be a beta tester then send an email with "Cycle Analyst 2.1 Beta" or similar in the subject to sales@ebikes.ca, with a bit of background on yourself and your project, and a brief explanation of how exactly you plan to make use of these features. If there are general questions of any kind, please post them to this forum and I'll try to respond promptly.

Justin
 
Hi Justin,

im not going to pretend i have the knowledge to really appreciate all those extra features but i bet the guys will be totally stoked with all the work you have done on the CA.
For myself i'd just like to say well done and thanks for all your effort in making such a great piece of kit!!!!
I'm still happy with my DB but i will be getting CA when i upgrade my packs - again thanks for all the effort in getting us such a wonderful gizmo!!


Cheers


D
 
Very Nice!

I sent you an email.
 
Aye, fantastic work Justin. I'm keen to try one too....any chance of a motorbike sized one for my aprilia? :D
 
Data logging is what I need right about now, and the speed feature would realy help as well.

had you considered being able to store several speed and current profiles in the CA? I've found many instances where it would be nice to be able to change both on the fly, then change them back only minutes later. I.E., uneexpectedly finding myself on a road with faster traffic, or trying to get up a hill that's steeper than I had planned, Or, sudden opportunity to race a Lycra rider. :lol:
 
Excellent!
Now I don't have to build my own from scratch. On-the-fly current limit adjusting is a nice feature.
Will it be possible to adjust the maximum current limit with a pot and use the current feedback throttle at the same time?
 
fechter said:
Excellent!
Now I don't have to build my own from scratch. On-the-fly current limit adjusting is a nice feature.
Will it be possible to adjust the maximum current limit with a pot and use the current feedback throttle at the same time?

Well Fechter, I think you have enough circuit trickery up your sleeve to figure this one out. One easy way that pops in my mind would be for your throttle output to drive the positive side of the potentiometer instead of fixing it at +5V.

Justin
 
Drunkskunk said:
Data logging is what I need right about now, and the speed feature would realy help as well.

had you considered being able to store several speed and current profiles in the CA? I've found many instances where it would be nice to be able to change both on the fly, then change them back only minutes later. I.E., uneexpectedly finding myself on a road with faster traffic, or trying to get up a hill that's steeper than I had planned, Or, sudden opportunity to race a Lycra rider. :lol:

The idea of the potentiometer was to allow that instant change of one of these factors, but obviously it can't do both the speed and the current limits at the same time. And there isn't another spare input pin for a 2nd pot. However, one really easy way to achieve a similar effect with the flip of a button is to install a switch in series with the green throttle over-ride line. Once you flip that, then the CA limiting features are shut off and you get full power up to what the controller will allow. The pics below show an example of this:

View attachment 1Throttle Toggle, Closed.jpg
 
Hey Justin,

I Just recieved my C/A & 72v controller with 4110's from you back, Thanks for fixing the shunt resitance for me :lol:

I just saw this post now; i'f i would of seen this before i sent it to you i would of definatly had you upgrade it to the 2.1v
I may be interested in the large version display of the c/a .. but i'll give it some thought atm.

Just along with the rest of use here I'd like to say thanks for your contribution to us ebikers here :) ..

Here is a link to my bike.

http://endless-sphere.com/forums/viewtopic.php?f=6&t=2937

I had a few question about the 10k potentometer modification. Can this be done if i'm using version 2.0?

What happens if someone turns the pot or changes my setting?
does that mean ..say i do it for top speed i'd have to re-adjust?

I'd like to make another sugestion also:

When we use the c/a to limit current say ex 20 amps; would it ever be possible instead of the c/a cuting out hard to have a smooth cut off? I have something to this effect on my r/c airplane.

Steve C aka Steveo!
 
steveo said:
Just along with the rest of use here I'd like to say thanks for your contribution to us ebikers here :) ..

Hey well you guys have all made this a fun ride from my end too!

steveo said:
I had a few question about the 10k potentometer modification. Can this be done if i'm using version 2.0?

Nope, there isn't any facility in the V2.0 code to read the extra analog input. However, it will be possible to reprogram your board down the road to V2.1 and then have these features.

steveo said:
What happens if someone turns the pot or changes my setting?
does that mean ..say i do it for top speed i'd have to re-adjust?

Of course, if you or someone else turns the pot then you are adjusting the limit, that is the whole point. The nice thing about a pot is that it is easy to turn up or down even while you are riding if you feel like tweaking it. The maximum limit is still programed in software, and then the pot allows you to scale between zero up to this maximum.

steveo said:
I'd like to make another sugestion also:
When we use the c/a to limit current say ex 20 amps; would it ever be possible instead of the c/a cuting out hard to have a smooth cut off? I have something to this effect on my r/c airplane.

That is exactly how it works. There is no 'hard cutout', the Cycle Analyst attempts to adjust the motor controller's current draw via the throttle override output until the controller is drawing 20A from the battery. If the CA sees that more current is being drawn, then it reduces the throttle output voltage, and if it sees less amps then it increases it. Because of delays inherent in the whole process, it's not perfect, so the moment you hit full throttle the controller will typically draw the full controller current limit, and then shortly later the CA will catch up and bring it into regulation. You control how rapidly it does this by adjusting the parameter IntAGain in the advanced setup menu. Too low of a value and it could take over a second or two for the current limit to fully kick in, too high of a value and you'll get a rapid oscillation or vibration about the 20A set point and it won't feel very smooth.

Nice work on the conversion BTW!

Justin
 
Justin, You are Workohlic! :wink:

Doc
 
I just got the controller back on my bike .. 66v on a 5304 in a 20" is insane low end torque.. so much that i think the bike might take of without me .. i can't wait for the snow to melt so i can bring it out for a run ...

thanks for the Fyi

I rather not mess with the c/a right now... it works ok .. i tried the cut out at 20amp .. its not really a hard cut out .. it cuts in and out fairly softly .. so its good enough for the time being ..

I've added resistive braking to my bike .. this is a picture of it atm .. as per the 5304 is a little fat for my rear dropouts to allow disk brakes .. and vbrakes are no option due to wheel size .. ..

2rrbaj5.jpg


-steveo

I've posted more pics in thread on the picture & video section Steveo norco vps buzz 2001
 
justin_le said:
The idea of the potentiometer was to allow that instant change of one of these factors, but obviously it can't do both the speed and the current limits at the same time. And there isn't another spare input pin for a 2nd pot. However, one really easy way to achieve a similar effect with the flip of a button is to install a switch in series with the green throttle over-ride line. Once you flip that, then the CA limiting features are shut off and you get full power up to what the controller will allow.

Nice! Lookout Lycras, Here I come :twisted:
I Think I'm ready to sign up as a guinee pig for beta testing 2.1. My bike is at a stable configuration, and I don't plan to change anything untill the new bike is built this summer.

An additional idea, is it possable to run the throttle from the C.A.? That would eliminate the extra cable being run from the controller to the handlebars.
 
Having read this post and having understood virtually none of it I have but one question. Is a potentiometer pretty much the same as a potentate? Perhaps a device for measuring potentates?

Mike
 
damn just ordered my CA yesterday... would've loved to test out one of those big screen format ones.
 
Drunkskunk said:
An additional idea, is it possable to run the throttle from the C.A.? That would eliminate the extra cable being run from the controller to the handlebars.

Yes but with some consequences. The hall effect throttles draw about 5mA, so if you power them from the 5V bus on the CycleAnalyst that nearly doubles the current draw, with the consequence that A) the backlighting LED gets brighter, and B), the linear regulator gets hotter, which might derate the maximum voltage. Should still be fine with 48V and lower packs, probably OK with 72V batteries as well but at 100V then there's over a watt being generated on a pretty small circuit.

If you have a controller with the Direct Plug-in CycleAnalyst connector, then you can simply bypass the diode in the throttle over-ride line that is internal to the controller. Then the CA output will directly drive the throttle line both high and low. You then plug the throttle into the Cycle Analyst going to the 5V*, Gnd, and Aux Input pins, and presto it is a current throttle and you don't have 2 sets of wires to the controller.

Justin
 
I just got my Beta CA. Justin I sent you an email with a few questions. With that info I hope to be up and running soon.

I don't have a good way to measure milliohms for the shunt. I was in at an electronics surplus place today and the largest shunt they had was for 30 amps. I need something that goes up to 300 amps. So my question is I have an approximately 1 foot of 2/0 welding wire from the contactor to the controller. Anybody know the milliohms of that? Or a good way to measure it. I have a fluke digital meter that was calibrated about 2 years ago.
 
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