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Thoughts on This eBike Kit and Battery

Old 02-26-22, 04:59 PM
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portals
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Thoughts on This eBike Kit and Battery

Hello,

I've been researching ebikes for a good few months now dipping in and out and given the weather should be getting better as we approach Spring and Summer I'm now in a position to buy the kit I need.

I will be doing this on a budget as it's my first dip in to ebikes, tbh I haven't fixed a puncture or done any bike maintenance in probably 30+ yrs so I know I have a few things to learn!

I spent a LOT of time looking at the various kits available and also researching batteries even contemplating making my own battery pack housed in my own designed 3D printed case (I have a CR-6 SE), but there doesn't seem to be a great cost saving in going down this route.

This is my current 'budget' shopping list, it's from Aliexpress but ships from Germany and they have a returns policy so if it all goes south and what I buy ends up being junk I'll have some redress...

I'd really appreciate any thoughts you may have on the conversion kit and battery I've listed below. I will be using the bike mainly on public roads for school run and more leisurely weekend runs. I know about the legality of idiots whizzing about on over-powered ebikes and scooters, when I'm on public roads the bike will be limited so it's legal but will also have the option to remove this when permissible..

Electric Bike Conversion Kit 26 28" 700C eBike Conversion Kit 36V 350W 500W 48V 1000W 1500W Front Rear Bicycle Hub Motor Wheel
aliexpress.com/item/1005001437503560.html?spm=a2g0o.cart.0.0.47ce3c00kQRNf0&mp=1
Color: 48V 1500W Rear
Ships From: GERMANY
Wheel Size: 26''
Display Model: KT LCD3
Brake Type: Brake Lever

Electric Bicycle Battery 1500W 52V 20Ah 24Ah 48V 24Ah 20Ah eBike Bateria Pack for 1800W 1000W 750W 500W Bafang Motor eBike DIY
aliexpress.com/item/1005001625912806.html?spm=a2g0o.cart.0.0.47ce3c00kQRNf0&mp=1
Color: 52V20Ah 40A BMS
Ships From: GERMANY

I also need to buy a torque arm.

Any/all thoughts most welcome.
cheers
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Old 02-26-22, 06:42 PM
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My advice is that you should think about why you want an e-bike. If it's mainly to augment your physical conditioning while you pedal however hard you are able, you probably won't need such a powerful kit. If you want a full electric bike because you're too lazy to pedal, that's something else. I think they call it an electric motorbike.

Regarding the quality of whatever you buy, I have found more satisfaction buying from established manufacturers with reputations for high quality, rather than from questionable entities of unknown or lesser standards. "One usually gets what one pays for," as the saying goes.
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Old 02-26-22, 08:22 PM
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If budget allows, I would look for a complete ebike to purchase instead of buying a motor/battery/controller kit.
Plenty of capable ebikes for under $2000 or $1500 that can be easily assembled from shipping box.
Not much mechanical skills needed to get them operational out of the box.
Instead of spending lots of time researching, you could be spending lots of time riding.
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Old 02-26-22, 09:47 PM
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A bike designed with a mid-drive motor from a company that has good support and is a known quantity is going to be a lot better than any kits or random alibaba and his 40 thieves stuff or D.I.Y. stuff. Keep in mind most of those bikes that people throw kits on are not meant to be e-bikes.

Bosch, Brose, Shimano, Fazua, Yamaha...all make some decent quality motors that have good support and service behind them and if you are using it regularly for stuff (which it sounds like you are) you will have a better time with it.
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Old 02-26-22, 10:00 PM
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Since you're in GB, you might check pedelecs.co.uk (AIR). There haven't been many individuals who have reported purchasing kits from ali (baba or express). Endless Sphere is another potential resource.
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Old 02-26-22, 10:16 PM
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I am in the USA and they don't list the shipping charges, so I cannot =judge whether its price is competitive. However, KT controllers and the LCD3 are solid products. I have maybe a half dozen DIY bikes running with them. No display failures, but they are fragile if the bike falls over or if you rest it upside down on the screen. The controllers are robust, but not resistant to total immersion, or to the wire harness getting sprayed with water from a wheel.

Motors 500W and under are generally geared motors. Motors 1000W and higher are usually direct drive. Do you know the tradeoffs between the two types?

Is this going to be front drive or rear drive? In general, front drive should be reserved for steel forks and smaller power motors. I have two front drive ebikes and both are steel forks. Both use 20A controllers. Both are geared motors. Both normally powered ar 100-200watts, but the bigger motor can peak around 800W, Torque arms on both,

I have a few UPP batteries. They do use generic chinese cells, which probably cost about $1 USD. There are 104 cells in that triangle pack, so the cells are $104. For reference, Samsungf/Panasonic cells would cost me $6/cell, UPP would probably pay $4, but you can see the cost of goods going up with name brand cells. I can't say if UPP is a quality vendor, but I would rather buy their battery than some other Chinese brands.
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Old 02-26-22, 10:31 PM
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Thank all for your replies.

My advice is that you should think about why you want an e-bike. If it's mainly to augment your physical conditioning while you pedal however hard you are able, you probably won't need such a powerful kit. If you want a full electric bike because you're too lazy to pedal, that's something else. I think they call it an electric motorbike.

It's the latter, but not that I'm too lazy to pedal however I'm not getting any younger and have a 12yr to keep up with!!

Regarding the quality of whatever you buy, I have found more satisfaction buying from established manufacturers with reputations for high quality, rather than from questionable entities of unknown or lesser standards. "One usually gets what one pays for," as the saying goes.

Agreed, I posted in case anyone here had experience of either of these particular budget products, I'm testing the water and I like the idea of low cost and building it myself (even if it is a kit!), and for 500, well, unless someone really p1sses on my chips I might have to just try it. ;-)
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Old 02-26-22, 10:45 PM
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Motors 500W and under are generally geared motors. Motors 1000W and higher are usually direct drive. Do you know the tradeoffs between the two types?

Yes, I've done a fair bit of reading and as you say pretty much all the more powerful motors are brushless direct drive, they might be less efficient however for my intended uses that's not really an issue.


Is this going to be front drive or rear drive? In general, front drive should be reserved for steel forks and smaller power motors. I have two front drive ebikes and both are steel forks. Both use 20A controllers. Both are geared motors. Both normally powered ar 100-200watts, but the bigger motor can peak around 800W, Torque arms on both,

It will be a rear drive, that makes most sense to me at the moment and also they are cheaper. ;-)
Noted your comment re torque arms, they seem to be quite important!



I have a few UPP batteries. They do use generic chinese cells, which probably cost about $1 USD. There are 104 cells in that triangle pack, so the cells are $104. For reference, Samsungf/Panasonic cells would cost me $6/cell, UPP would probably pay $4, but you can see the cost of goods going up with name brand cells. I can't say if UPP is a quality vendor, but I would rather buy their battery than some other Chinese brands.

Probably I would rather make my own battery pack but as you say if you buy the batteries from a trusted vendor it's hard to save any cash and also the hassle with the tungsten strips and needing to by a cheap spot welder ;-)

Last edited by portals; 02-26-22 at 10:53 PM.
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Old 02-26-22, 10:55 PM
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Since you're in GB, you might check pedelecs.co.uk (AIR). There haven't been many individuals who have reported purchasing kits from ali (baba or express). Endless Sphere is another potential resource.

Thanks, I'll take a look!
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Old 02-26-22, 11:02 PM
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If budget allows, I would look for a complete ebike to purchase instead of buying a motor/battery/controller kit.
Plenty of capable ebikes for under $2000 or $1500 that can be easily assembled from shipping box.
Not much mechanical skills needed to get them operational out of the box.


I could spend 1.5k+ however to me this is as much of a project as anything else, I'm vaguely confident that I'll get something that eventually just works as I want it to. :-)


Instead of spending lots of time researching, you could be spending lots of time riding.

Lol, yes, but part of the fun is also getting a bang for your buck.
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Old 02-27-22, 12:06 PM
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If you read the threads on this site or ES by many different individuals, you'll discover we have had excellent success with geared hub systems, direct drive and mid-drives. Many (most) of those who have DIY experience think it's far superior to OEM since the bike that's converted is one that was comfortable before the addition, you have the satisfaction of assembly, it's usually less expensive and a host of other reasons. For instance, yesterday I rode the mid-drive off road bike that has been faultless for six+ years of pretty severe riding with no maintenance to the BBS02, and my daughter has a front hub that was my errand bike seven years ago.
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Old 02-27-22, 02:29 PM
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I started building my own ebikes with rear hub kits back in 2012. The experience of building your own ebikes is invaluable and somewhat addictive, too.
By 2014, I was building 45 mph capable hub-drive ebikes from my downhill bikes with suspension & brakes that can actually handle the extra stress of traveling at higher speeds (on or off-pavement).
I've also built ebikes with BBSHD kits, but ultimately I don't find it provide much more advantage than hub-motor for my application.
I've sold all the ebikes I've converted and I'm glad that I did while they were valued and appreciated.
Fast forward 10 years to today, I find the "need for speed" or "more power" overrated,
Yes, it is fun to have 1000w available with a twist of a throttle, but that seems to get old rather quickly to me.
On pavement, fast ebikes tend to attract attention from law enforcement (& thieves); off-pavement, I would likely get myself into hospital (during a pandemic).
I think everyone can benefit from a bit more mobility, ebikes can provide that with ease; at times far more capability than needed for original purpose for an ebike.
IME, one can save money & time by buying a complete ebike & spend more time riding instead of researching & building .
Whichever you decide to pursue; I wish you the best.
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Old 02-27-22, 11:23 PM
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Originally Posted by portals View Post
I will be doing this on a budget as it's my first dip in to ebikes
Budget and ebikes are two words that don't mix.

You asked for advice and my advice is for you to find a good LBS that will take care of you.

Ebikes are amazing. Do find something that works for you and get it. Ebike haters usually just can't afford one.

I love all my bikes and ebikes. Money is awesome and I never seek permission from strangers to spend it.
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Old 02-28-22, 10:10 AM
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Something like this complete ebike would be close to the cost of your conversion kit,
It's hard to find better value for your money when looking for ebikes:
https://electrek.co/2022/02/28/ride1...-there-period/

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Old 02-28-22, 04:35 PM
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Something like this complete ebike would be close to the cost of your conversion kit,
It's hard to find better value for your money when looking for ebikes:


Thanks for the link, that looks like a great deal for the price, the range let's it down a little though as 500W.

Also I'm in UK which pretty much rules it out.

In my OP I posted links to what's in my basket:
the ekit (48V 1500W Rear) = 291.32
the battery
(52V20Ah 40A BM) = 218.24
torgue arm (from above UK link, thanks!) = 12
The old plateau 26" mountain bike I have = 0
TOTAL = 521.56 (shipping is free)

Note that this is the price I pay - NO TAX if I select China when checking out - but they actually ship the stock from a warehouse in Germany with free delivery in 4-7 days, not sure how they get away with that, maybe they're exploiting a Brexit loophole?


To my mind that's a great price for a starter for ten!

Last edited by portals; 02-28-22 at 06:19 PM.
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Old 03-01-22, 10:43 AM
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Originally Posted by cat0020 View Post
Something like this complete ebike would be close to the cost of your conversion kit,
It's hard to find better value for your money when looking for ebikes:
It is a lovely bike and appears to be a great value, but it's a compromise and IMHO not an option if -
You need to regularly charge the battery off the bike ... as anyone living in cold winter conditions will need to do if they can't carry the entire bike indoors.
You need full coverage fenders (no mounting points in front, and not enough clearance)
You ride in a particularly hilly area (it's tough climbing serious hills without lower gears)
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Old 03-01-22, 11:12 AM
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I started building my own ebikes with rear hub kits back in 2012. The experience of building your own ebikes is invaluable and somewhat addictive, too.
By 2014, I was building 45 mph capable hub-drive ebikes from my downhill bikes with suspension & brakes that can actually handle the extra stress of traveling at higher speeds (on or off-pavement).
I've also built ebikes with BBSHD kits, but ultimately I don't find it provide much more advantage than hub-motor for my application.
I've sold all the ebikes I've converted and I'm glad that I did while they were valued and appreciated.
Fast forward 10 years to today, I find the "need for speed" or "more power" overrated,
Yes, it is fun to have 1000w available with a twist of a throttle, but that seems to get old rather quickly to me.
On pavement, fast ebikes tend to attract attention from law enforcement (& thieves); off-pavement, I would likely get myself into hospital (during a pandemic).
I think everyone can benefit from a bit more mobility, ebikes can provide that with ease; at times far more capability than needed for original purpose for an ebike.
IME, one can save money & time by buying a complete ebike & spend more time riding instead of researching & building .

Whichever you decide to pursue; I wish you the best.

Thanks for you comments, I'm not looking to be a speed king ;-) it's more the distance I can get that's leading me to larger capacity as I'm also not getting any younger!
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Old 03-01-22, 12:04 PM
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Can you specify the range you require for your ebike?
and/or specify your budget?
Maybe that will help you get better suggestion from the collective?

From the 1000w hub-motorkit you are considering, I thought the need for speed was implied.

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Old 03-02-22, 02:56 PM
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Big problem with the posted choice- Its illegal in the OP's area.
Soyabean had great advice. Getting something local is the best especially for someone who is a rookie. Yeah, many of you built bikes from kits, but thats you! Others really dont have the skills. I see it all the time.
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Old 03-02-22, 05:57 PM
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Can you specify the range you require for your ebike?
and/or specify your budget?
Maybe that will help you get better suggestion from the collective?

From the 1000w hub-motorkit you are considering, I thought the need for speed was implied.


Thanks for responding.

At the weekend we'd like to get out for the day and head up to Loch Lomond or the like so I"d be looking for a range of approx 60-80 miles, if that's not realistic using average power assist then it's not a big deal to get a train home from nearest station, I'd just make that part of the plan in advance.

The ekit/battery I'm looking at are listed above and cost 520 if I get delivered from China, I would happily spend another 500 if I could justify it however this is my first ebike so I want to start with something basic and budget in case it ends up in the spare room for next 10yrs...but I also don;t want to have to worry about range as that would spoil the day.

It's not about the top speed (I'll be bricking it at anything over 20mph ;-) ), but more about range.
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Old 03-02-22, 06:56 PM
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Depending on the terrain, 1000w motor kit would need a rather large battery to obtain 60-80 mile, even at mid-level PAS.
Not sure what "bricking it" means, but 20 mph with 1000w motor kit should be easy... even 500w motor would do..
Maybe with a 500w motor kit would be less expensive and allow you to have a bigger battery to get the 60-80 mile range you want?
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Old 03-02-22, 07:52 PM
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Not sure what "bricking it" means

It's vernacular, google 'bricking it' ;-)

Maybe with a 500w motor kit would be less expensive and allow you to have a bigger battery to get the 60-80 mile range you want?

I will look at the numbers again, I guess I also see it as partly value for money, for the price of the kit/battery I listed above there is not much of a cost saving by going for lower Wattage motors, from a cost vs return perspective then I'd probably prefer the potential off getting speed up to a reasonable, safe cruising speed rather than having that extra 20 miles of capacity, we'll see.

Thanks
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Old 03-02-22, 08:00 PM
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Big problem with the posted choice- Its illegal in the OP's area.
Soyabean had great advice. Getting something local is the best especially for someone who is a rookie. Yeah, many of you built bikes from kits, but thats you! Others really dont have the skills. I see it all the time.

Regarding the legality, as far as I know in UK yes if the bike is more powerful that 250W it's deemed illegal even if it's a larger capacity but limited.

I'm not too worried about that tbh, I plan to stealth the bike up with black tape so no wires trailing about, the signage will say it's 250W and mostly when I'm on public roads it will be limited anyway so it's unlikely I'm going to draw any attention.

When I do unlimit the bike it will only be on my own in late evening when everything is quiet, there and are plenty of lanes, avenues and alleyways as well as pedestrian bollards round here to give the cops little chance ;-)
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Old 03-02-22, 08:16 PM
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There are quite a few bike / ebike shops near to where I live but the prices they charge are, lets be kind, pretty expensive for what they are, I understand why that is however I've decided I'm going DIY..

The first real bike I ever got (that wasn't a hand-me-down), was when I was ten, or eleven, it was a Peugeot racer with 12 gears and a derailer, they were pretty rare back in the day, all the other kids were riding Grifters, Chopper or BMXs. It was a fast bike, handy if you grew up where I did ;-)

My old man used to service his old Rover on ramps in the garage so I got quite good at stripping the bike down and putting it back together (however that was 40yrs ago), so I'm looking forward to building the ebike, it will be a change from the other 'projects' I've had past 2 Covid yrs, most of them were 3D printer / Arduino electronics related (I built a large 1:32 digital scale slot car track with PC controlled race management software for 6 cars with lane changing and has lap counting, timings, pit stops with fuel/tyre simulation all on the big telly), so this will be nice change.

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Old 03-02-22, 09:41 PM
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Originally Posted by portals View Post
Regarding the legality, as far as I know in UK yes if the bike is more powerful that 250W it's deemed illegal even if it's a larger capacity but limited.

I'm not too worried about that tbh, I plan to stealth the bike up with black tape so no wires trailing about, the signage will say it's 250W and mostly when I'm on public roads it will be limited anyway so it's unlikely I'm going to draw any attention.

When I do unlimit the bike it will only be on my own in late evening when everything is quiet, there and are plenty of lanes, avenues and alleyways as well as pedestrian bollards round here to give the cops little chance ;-)
"Stealth it up" ... riiiiiiggggght. Some black tape and a few silly labels aren't going to hide the great big direct drive motor in the rear wheel. If you draw any attention from the local constabulary you're done. Have you spent any time on the UK Pedelecs board?

As for 60-80 mile range ... if you are willing to a) keep pedaling for the 3+ hrs (putting out somewhere between a continuous 75-100w) b) keep your speed at or below 20mph and c) ride basically on a flat terrain you have a chance with the 52v 20ahr battery to get 60 miles. 80 would be a real stretch and doable IMHO only if you optimized things a lot (aero as possible, continuous 100+w protein output, light weight and high pressure tires). If you want to see what the effect the variables have on your potential mileage plug some numbers in Grin's motor simulator tool - https://ebikes.ca/tools/simulator.html
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