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Notes on my commute.

Posted: Wed, 18 Sep 2019, 09:07
by memecode
So after riding to work and back a few times now, it's been very consistent in using half the battery (according to the display, which could be wrong I guess). And last night I dug out the power measuring meter thingo and plugged it in between the socket and the bike to see what the bike used to charge overnight. And I noticed the initial amperage draw was 6A, but the bike was registering 10A (according to the speedo/10 thing it does). Not that I really care. The charge did take about 3.5hrs from half full, the last hour was at a more subdued rate of 4A according to the bike. In the morning I also checked how much total power it used: 3.1kWh. Which seems to make sense... as the CALB cells are like 40aH I think? So is the nominal capacity maybe around 5.2kWh? Little bit of wiggle room for charger loss I guess.

It was pouring all the way in this morning, got pretty wet even under all my gear. But still smilin... EVs make me happy. Looking forward to those not to hot or cold spring days with lots of sunshine.

Re: Notes on my commute.

Posted: Wed, 18 Sep 2019, 10:27
by antiscab
yep, dash shows amps into the battery (140V @ 10A = 250v @ 6A inc some losses)

The display defaults to 30Ah of capacity as that's what the original nimh batteries were. Fortunately that's a good number to use for new CALB 40 Ah cells (remembering you're discharging them much faster than their standard discharge rate and leaving some margin for error).

Be aware, fuel gauge reset only happens when battery voltage gets down to 110v (on the old nimh firmware)
in practice what this may mean is the the bike may stop charging before the battery is full
the charger stops when either target voltage is reached, or fuel guage is full based on Ah count back in.

Re: Notes on my commute.

Posted: Thu, 19 Sep 2019, 12:32
by memecode
So more of a review of what I've found so far:

First the negatives:
  • The suspension is harder and less pleasant than the old petrol scooter, maybe in part to the smaller wheels. And it seems to jar over bigger bumps. Which may be able to be adjusted for me later, at least on the rear. Interestingly I tried taking a pillion passenger on the weekend and it make a positive difference in the handling. I think the suspension is setup for more weight. I'll have to look into dialing it back later.
  • Seating position wise I'm slightly less comfortable in that I like to keep a very upright position due to my back issues. But it kinda makes you wanna slouch on the seat with your legs forward.
  • The aforementioned clock issue, where it keeps forgetting the current time the next day.
  • It's hella long. Makes it hard to park.
  • The speedo needle shakes a bit.
  • Head light isn't bright enough. If I have to ask myself "is it on?"... Maybe fixable...
But there are positives too:
  • More power... it's got more grunt when I want it to really move. The old scooter was (theoretically 187cc/15kw) and once moving the Vectrix kills it. That does cut into your battery something fierce though.
  • No clutch. I don't have to wait for the clutch to engage before getting full torque. Which is especially nice in slow traffic where the old scooter what need lots of rpm just to go at a snails pace. Esp on a slight hill like climbing out of the CBD to go north over the harbour bridge in heavy traffic.
  • Regen - being able to slow down to a stop without using my brakes is great. Putting power back into the batteries is very nice.
  • More storage space than the old bike.
  • No vibration/noise at the lights. Never gets old.
  • I like the train like whine of the motor much more than a petrol engine.
  • Feels like a the bikes from Tron come to life.
  • Cheaper to run. I'm using $.75 of electricity a day instead of $1.80 in petrol. (It'll pay for itself in 8 years! Not that I care about ROI). The old bike wasn't bad, 2.7L/100km but electric is still better.
  • Finally breathing a sigh of relief that I'm doing something good for the environment. And maybe one day setup some home storage to actually charge from solar that I collect.
  • Has a reverse mode! Which has been very handy in moving it in and out of tight spaces.