Electric Bikes - Ampedbikes Installation
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08-23-08, 07:51 PM
Ampedbikes no longer uses Golden Motors brushless hub. Ampedbikes said he has his own motor and wheel manufactured for him to his specs. I just bought a kit and was happily suprised at what I received. My shiny strong wheel and hub motor is impressive. The installation on my old Specialized Hard Rock (a beloved antique) has been a little challenging. Lots of grinding to fit the wheel into my forks, etc. I have fairly new Shimano gears and shifters, which incorporate the "all-in-one" design. This is not compatible with the motor cut-off brakes on sent with the Ampedbikes kit. At present, I have both sets of brake levers on the bike and might disassemble the Shimano brake levers (punch out the fastener holding the brake levers in) and just use the ampedbike brake levers. Still have to finish hooking up everything. After looking at recommendations from ampedbikes and from this thread, I bought a battery (lifeP04) from PingPing. Stil have to put on connectors that work with each other, etc. Still waiting to finish so I can ride the amped bike. Any suggestions regarding the brake levers? No one is going to steal my old bike with the double brake levers, at least.
08-23-08, 08:02 PM
I too have been working on my assembly, I am using an old Raleigh Technium MB. I am planning to convert to single speed, so two less cables amongst the mess. The amped levers look to have an on/off switch connected to the motor, there is probably a creative way to integrate these into your levers/shifters?? I was happy rim was true, I am going to put rim tape on before I mount the tire, those holes look sharp...but yes a nice strong wheel.
08-23-08, 09:30 PM
No room in the Shimano set up for the cutoff switch. I think I will just drill out the fixture that holds the Shimano brake lever in. There are alot of wires running around. I have 9% grades (at least) to ride up (often for 4 straight miles), so I think I need the gears for now. We'll see after I use the bike more.
I'm currently looking at the Amped kit. Could you tell me something about the rim and its quality? I know the website states that it's better than other brands, but I'd like to hear from buyers. This is a big factor in my decision, as I don't want to buy a good motor but cheap rim and spokes. The hub motor is encased in stainless steel and not aluminum? How much does it weigh and is it front or rear?
I take it that the battery charger it comes with won't work with your Li battery?
08-23-08, 10:09 PM
The box had a weight of 22#. That includes the box, packing, all parts, etc. I didn't weigh the wheel, but likely it is about 15# or so. The rim is from a new lot that ampedbikes just got in. It is shiny stainless steel. Very solidly built. A good heavy feeling of quality. The spokes are easily 12 gauge. The motor is in stainless steel (it appears). You could email ampedbikes. He is quick to respond to emails. I heavily investigated before choosing my kit. I think this latest generation kit from ampedbikes is impressive. I bought a front hub kit. I don't plan on riding during storms or snow, so traction shouldn't be a big issue. Strongly recommend a steel bike (or at least steel forks) to handle the tork of the motor.
08-23-08, 10:22 PM
I have the Ampedbikes kit installed, I elected not to install the brakes for the same reasons as above, I have integrated brakes/shifters that are incompatible. I have not found any drawbacks to the lack of a brake cutoff yet, but am cognizant of the need to maintain vigilance when the motor is on. I have yet to mistakenly push the throttle with the brake applied.
The rim the motor was installed on is (in my limited experience,) topnotch, double walled alloy and pretty stout, it was true, until I had ridden the bike for about 30 miles, then I tried to tighten the spokes and made a mess of it. Not so terrible as to be worrying, but just not as true as it was. The tightening was necessary as I did have some pinging spokes, (sounds like something loose in the wheel.) I will do a better job next time, and the tightening has held so far, about 1 1/2 to 2 turns per spoke.
The motor combined with my 36v 10ah LiFePo4 battery from Golden Motors gives me plenty of power to complete a 27 mile roundtrip with constant pedalling. I have gentle rolling hills common to the desert, never perfectly flat, but often hard to tell whether it is uphill or downhill until you are going the other way. This is the Antelope Valley area of the High Desert in So. Cal. so there is plenty of wind. The first roundtrip to my workplace was in fact at the least a quartering headwind all the way in , and by the time I left for home the wind direction had shifted to the opposite direction and I enjoyed another quartering headwind all the way home. Windspeed about 10-15 mph, the bike and my pedalling powered me the whole way, though the green light was mostly off by the time I rolled into my driveway. I have noticed that with no load, all the lights are lit fully, but under load is where you'll find how much power remains, and the heavier the load the dimmer the lights, which to me is understandable, and being known, is a decent way to gauge how much juice one has left.
My bike: an old Univega Alpina Sport mountain bike. 4130 CrMo steel (Tange Prestige double butted frame), weighs 60 pounds altogether motor/battery/bike. I too had to grind the fork to get the raised rings off in order to mount the hub motor, but 2 minutes with an agle grinder took care of that. Just be careful to get the surface flat and parallel to the opposite side of the fork, eyeballing was good enough for me. I check the torque on the hub nuts every week to make sure it doesn't come loose and run it without a torque arm and have had no problems yet. I currently run knobby mtn tires on it (26X2.x), but will switch to street tires (26X1.5's) when I get a flat . The battery is listed at 11 pounds, I aint sure, but guessing motor 20, batt, 11, bike 29 lbs. I weigh in at 225 lbs. so with rolling flatland, strong headwinds, and a 27 mile r/t commute with constant pedalling, the bike performs as advertised. No regrets here, unless it would be for more power, but that is something I would rather not get used to, as I feel the speed and endurance of my system is spot on for me. I get a vigorous 50 minute workout for 13.5 miles one way trip. The bike has taken about 30 minutes off my one way time from my trek 4300 mt bike. I got an old camera case to mount the controller and battery in, ran the wries along the frame withh zip ties, stuffed the controller in the outside padded compartment of the camera case along with the wires, and the batery in the main compartment. total cost, zero, as I had the zipties and the camera case was an old Walmart special from about 10 years ago, padded and even hs a second outside compartment to hold my bike tools, flat repair, spoke wrench, and spare batteries for my handlebar mounted flashlight and rear blinky taillight. Now that Mr Ray has the motors in finally (we early adopters had to wait about 4-6 weeks for delivery) and you shouldn't have a major delay in receiving your, I would recommend the kit... Pictures to follow.
EDIT: for spelling and added tire size
I thought the website said the rims are double-walled aluminum and the spokes are steel? When you say this is a new batch, does that mean these are improved? I've e-mailed Amped about the weight but have yet to hear back. Maybe it's the weekend. Is stainless steel stronger than aluminum rims?
08-23-08, 10:31 PM
I take it that the battery charger it comes with won't work with your Li battery?
No, you'll need a cell balancing charger to charge your LiPo (although I think you really mean LiFePo4, I think LiPo is more a r/c style battery ...flat packs vs round cells etc... ) The golden motor battery although crappy quality assurance (the case is screwed together with drywall screws ferchrissakes. I have not had a problem with mine and haven't taken it apart, but those who have report plug mouting nuts rubbing against cells etc... )
EDIT: uhh, ... errr... nevermind, I can't read tonight... I see you said simply "Li", but still need a cell balancing charger for LiFePo4...
08-23-08, 10:42 PM
I just rechecked the ampedbikes site. The spokes are 12 gauge stainless steel and the hub and wheel are polished aluminum. However, the wheel is double walled aluminum and is very sturdy. A vast difference from the Urban Movers I tried out. I suppose if everything was out of steel, it would be too heavy.
08-24-08, 05:52 PM
I did take the brake levers off of my Shimano gears. Now the brakes that came with the kit are on the bike and no "double brake handles". Much better looking. LOL! I am pretty sure I wouldn't forget to NOT use the motor when I was using the brakes, but now my brain is aging, I don't always trust it 100%, especially when tired : ) Levers were taken off in such a way that I can put them back in again if needed. My bike has lots of wire, now I kept my bike as a 21-speed). Looks a little like I am ready for a take-off into outer-space. Again, 20+ year old bike, funky brakes not matching shifter controls, battery is in my obviously used insulated soft-sided lunch bag strapped onto the rear rack (controller in side pocket. . . easy to open when in transit to keep it cool), wierd wires all over with zip ties. . . I'll just park next to some "eye candy bike" and no one will touch mine. Hope to make everything a little neater looking once I get to try it out and see what adjustments are needed. Battery is charging.
08-25-08, 01:01 PM
Yeah, the kit is very high quality IMHO. the rim is not stainless but double walled aluminum with 12G stainless steel spokes.
I am very very happy with my kit. I would have easily paid $600-$700 for the kit if I had seen it in a retail store.
bikefreaks, did you get the rear or front kit? If rear, what was the dropout clearance? And what sort of shifter did you use to accomodate the f-speed cassette?
08-28-08, 02:40 PM
I test drove my bike. I was surprised how much drag is created by the hub motor. Is there any way to decrease the drag when the motor is not needed? I find that the mild inclines I didn't need help on before now causes me to need the motor assist.
08-29-08, 11:57 PM
I have one of the new amped kits. There is a little drag. When I first started riding mine I thought the same thing but in actuality It spins fairly free, not as free as the non powered wheel, but for me anyways I think it was mostly getting used to the power..
Kind of like baseball if you are in there swinging the bat alot before you go up to hit the bat seems half the weight of if you were to just go in and swing.
08-31-08, 11:18 PM
It did feel easier today. We fixed up some bad connections, added two LARGE heat sinks to the controller, etc and readjusted everything. The wheel runs well now and has much more power than the first go round. I contacted customer support (amped-bikes) and Danny gave us lots of help. I mounted the controller on the frame bar below the seat mount, after all. The whole experience is just a different feel, you are right. Not bad, just different. I sure had a blast today on my new amped bike. So now, I have a funky looking bike, but for sure no one is going to see it as "eye candy" and steal it, unless they know what that big hub means and the funny thing bolted on below my seat. LOL!
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