Ezip Papamotors Kit Conversion.

Discussion in 'Electric Bicycles' started by slickdude, Nov 30, 2012.

  1. slickdude

    slickdude Member

    For those who were wondering as I was, here is my

    http://www.motoredbikes.com/showthread.php?39386-Am-I-forked-Weigh-in-on-this-please

    Anyhow, going forward from the ground up I will document this process for others who want to upgrade the Currie Ezips to a better and hardier system. Hopefully it will work out, and I will continue to update this important thread for others.

    The first time to make a decision is when you Ezip battery is beginning to run down. If you have a newer than 2009 Ezip forget anything more than 24 volt batteries, the motors most likely will burn out. If you have an Ezip older than 2009 and the original older motor there is a great chance you can push it to at least a 36 volt system, maybe even a 48 volt system.

    Once you come to a battery life ending of the currie Ezip, the decision comes. At this point, though more bucks, the Ezip is actually a pretty strong bike. Remember you can always transfer a kit to a new bike if need be. Considerations are mainly the motor power, motor volt needs and finally the distance and bucks you want to spend it on. In my case I liked the 500 volt motor at 48 volts, because the 48 volt 15amp hour battery when ridden slowly yields a great long distance. Because Papa motors sells their 500 volt motor is only 10 dollars less than their 1000 watt motor, buying the stronger motor was a no-brainer for me.

    So I decided on the 1000 Volt motor with a 48volt amp hour battery made by Li Ping of China.

    Mr. Ping is well loved world wide and noted for the quality of his batteries as they have been at the leading edge. He also personally responds to emails. The level of service from both he and the Papa Motors staff thus far have been quick, responsive and great, though I have had my lumps in the road.

    The first step was to remove the old currie parts. This included, the throttle, brake handles, PAS sensor, all wiring, rear rack mount, motor and bracket, rear motor sprocket. Removal of the front wheel for the incoming Papamotors wheel. Here are photos of step one. More will follow in newer posts as I document this for you all.

    The removal of the main stuff took about 3 hours total, though I constantly had interruptions as well. The bike can be worked faster if you turn it upside down.

    The first thing you must know is your fork width at the drop-ins. They must be about 4.6 inches or over 100mm. If not, then the motor will be too fat. Here are photos of what I saw on the Ezip.

    [​IMG]

    That is the original wheel and tire in the forks.

    A closer look at the original Ezip Trailz hub.
    [​IMG]

    After careful consultation with several local bike shops, it is believed the for drop-ins with the optional but mandatory torque bars installed will be strong enough to accommodate the 1000 watt powered front hub on the bike.

    Here is a close up of the drop ins directly.

    [​IMG]

    More to come on this project. Hope it helps you all!
     

  2. slickdude

    slickdude Member

    The Papamotors kit warns in advance that they ship in two weeks or longer and they ain't kidding. The initial order takes two shipments. The first is the big box which includes everything except the battery and charger. The shipment went through customs then arrived and everything including the seatpost rack was there. Everything checked out okay.

    The second shipment was about a week in a half later and included the battery. One thing I noticed was they shipped a box that stated Lithium Ion battery. I specifically ordered a LifePO4 which they advertised with the kit. The battery was marked as Lithium Ion too.

    [​IMG]
    Label on box and below...

    On the battery same label.
    [​IMG]

    What was advertised though is on their website.
    [​IMG]

    I emailed Li Ping and he told me they label it as Lithium Ion because of the battery transportation rules. Rest assured he emailed me, the battery I have is in fact a LifePO4. If you look at the battery label part number above it does start with an LP so makes sense, and fears laid to rest.
     
  3. slickdude

    slickdude Member

    The first thing you must do is remove a plug on the end of the wheel cord. This honestly is something that can lead to issues , but if you are to install the must-have torque bars on the wheels then this first step is mandatory. That also means removing the bolt once the wide plug end is off the wheel power cord for the electric hub. (This procedure is further explained and illustrated in the Papamotors install guide.)

    [​IMG]

    Once I figured out from illustrations how to do this properly getting it together was a fair snap and the install of the toruq bars went fast as well as getting the wheel back onto the bike. (Note: I took the wheels to a bike shop and had my original ezip mtn bike tire plus a new thorn proof tube installed onto the new motorized hub of the bike.

    This is how the torque bars look installed close up.
    [​IMG]

    The forks I believe will be okay with this setup.
    [​IMG]

    I have test ridden the bike non-powered and it rode fine. The front wheel is pretty heavy which makes gravity work well going on slight downhills, but provides a bit of a workout on slight inclines.
     
  4. slickdude

    slickdude Member

    Well sadly after the build-up I have hit trouble dealing with Papamotors and Mr. Ping's battery. They have been responsive, let me illustrate that, but. When I received the battery and charger the fan in the charger would not spin and both the red and green lights on at the same time. The battery sat for about 6 hours with the charging indication led's located on their BMS panel never lit up. That would mean the charger was defective and after talking to Mr. Ping and Papamotors who wanted me to fart around with a DMM, Mr. Ping indicated the charger was defective and he would send another. I was sure to ask him to test the replacement charger out and he said it would be. After another week and a half I got the replacement and same deal. Charger both green and red lights lit and the fan not spinning. So for now unless I get a working charger or solution to this, I have no working ebike from Papamotors. I will further update this project as it goes along.

    Last note, the battery bag they included is questionable, very tight in size for the battery I was sold with the kit. I may have to find a metal box to lock down the battery in and a bit more room.
     
  5. slickdude

    slickdude Member

    What a difference an hour makes or in this case fifteen minutes.Just after I posted yesterday, about 15 minutes later I was in contact with Papamotors and we worked it all out and within hours after that the new charger was indeed working. By 4am this morning the battery was fully charged and excitement began building for a possible ride later today in the afternoon. But before I go there, more photos so you can learn what I did and see how it works. In my case it works, more on that later.

    So with a charged battery on the bike there are still questions to improve on this build. One of the things I found is that plastic wire ties with stress break frequently. I kno2w this because I have a front yard tree fruit orchard and tie trees with big thick plastic ties and they break after a short while. So my first concern was the controller box. Since it is said to be water proof I decided to center it as last photo under the rack. But here is what I used to redo and strengthen it so it never moves.

    [​IMG]

    3 4 1/2 inch radiator hose clamps. Trust me, these won't break and they hold it tightly in place.

    [​IMG]

    A closer look including how I tied the wiring up.

    [​IMG]

    This is how the battery bag is mounted atop the rack. The bag did turn out to work okay and is quite secured by the Velcro strapping. Looks nice as well, clean...

    [​IMG]

    A closer look at how I did the wiring. Lots of electrical tape must be used to make sure the connectors don't get wet at all. Papamotors stressed this to me as well as Mr. Li Ping too.

    One of the options is the on/off switch for the battery. I became quite used to the external switch on the old Ezip setup. Normally Papamotors wants it in the bag. In my case though, I found it easier if it was out of the bag, and so I had to find where to mount it all. Here is how I did it. I taped the main switch and wrapped it good as to negate getting water on or in it. I suppose I could probably do it better and may return to explore that option, but for now here is where below the seat and how it is mounted.

    [​IMG]

    That essentially is how I did the battery bag with battery, controller, switch and controller/battery wiring. Here is how the rack clamps easily onto the seat stem.

    [​IMG]

    Now back to the front wheel another quickie shot to check out.

    This is the left side so you can clearly see how I did the torque bars on it.

    [​IMG]

    and below is the right side.

    [​IMG]

    Note the name says Ezip. Unfortunately what Currie gave me versus what I have here, it can now live up to that name.

    The way I did the wiring from the front systems along the frame can now be glimpsed in these photos.

    [​IMG]

    and going back towards the seat post...

    [​IMG]

    Shows how many more plastic ties for the wires are necessary. So this is what was required, a lot of work but was it worth it? Check out my next post and I'll tell ya.
     
  6. slickdude

    slickdude Member

    First of all, when I ride, I like the air on my face and to take in the scenery and I like tunes to listen to as well. One of the best investments I made was an mp3 music player with a built-in speaker system and it works well. Brightens up any ride actually. Here it is mounted on the right of center.

    [​IMG]

    And of course all of you will want to twist this too...

    Papamotors included this plus a free thumb throttle your choice.

    [​IMG]

    Good spring to it while riding and it feels like a Motorcycle too.

    Bet ya wanna see the finished working ride? Well, here is my pride and joy followed by my first riding impressions. Note: Some of you will spot my E-Trike back there as well. I am going to eventually upgrade that to a much longer but keep it slow ride.

    [​IMG]
     
  7. slickdude

    slickdude Member

    My impressions and what remains to fix it up to a really nice state.

    There are still issues at hand where I am sure I did something wrong. And I am still talking with the Papamotors support over it. However, my impressions is that this has the real Zip in E. Eat your heart out Currie in Chatsworth. Ya might have gotten me started but in the end your frame is something different and it rocks bigtime.

    The acceleration is downright nasty if you are unaware of what you are doing. At 20mph you begin hitting stiff wind resistance even on a day when it is not windy at all. I myself generally like the 10 to 15 mph range and by riding slower should get much longer distances from the battery. Today I put on this bike about 23 miles of riding. The first thing I had to do was head home and adjust the brakes from a few blocks away. I just wanted them more responsive. The next was to adjust the derailleur shifter as for some reason, low gear would jump to the next highest one. A great neighbor of mine who used to own a bike shop helped out and it was a quick fix.

    From there I decided to do Lake Balboa as a test ride after making sure that everything appeared secured and solid. Keeping a check on the speed to below ten on the sidewalks as the street I was on has no bike paths and is narrow, I made my way down to the park bike path. I first wanted to try it on a straight and so opened up for a bit and it was nice, quite pleasant and steady. I am rethinking the thumb throttle is safer for bumpy rides, because with every bump I might accidentally over-throttle for a moment, something I hated on regular motorcycles, though your thumb can get sore after a while too, so a twist is probably best if you want longer rides.

    I got to the L.A. River where the bike path goes down and then up a hill under Balboa Blvd. Going downhill I started pedaling then let gravity pull me down. At the bottom, throttle and it zipped right up, no issues and that was with plenty of throttle to spare. In the park I kept it to pedaling on straights and throttling on hills. Ya gotta remember guys I got a bad knee and foot both so for me this is a sort of nice CRUTCH!!! Got around the lake then that long hill that leads to the gold course and zipped up that with no problem. Again kept it at 15 mph or less so I could take in the view and what a great day it was. Sort of cool today so a jacket was necessary.

    Passing the golf course on my way to Woodley I finally made it and headed south around the model airfield into the Sepulveda Basin. It was clear ahead and with no traffic time to open her up just a bit. And so I did that and as I started to, as luck would have it, two police officers on bikes in shorts and uniform appeared ahead. Time to hit the red button, up-gear and start pedaling fast. Phew, close encounter as I watched in my rear view and one officer took a quick gander, but they continued on.

    With both of L.A.'s finest gone from view, the red button and POWER! Uh oh, one of those guys on a 15 speed with a bullet helmet and matching outfit passes me. He snickers too... Now don't you guys hate getting sneered at by the bullet heads, I sure do and now I can do something about it too :O

    I decided to wisely take the L.A. River turnout along the golf course and so did this guy. He decided to one-upsmanship me. Perfect and why, because I was now off-road and the speed thing off-road becomes legal. I kept a close distance while he pedaled fast then I decided the game is up. Throttled it up, caught up fast, turned smiled much to his frown then did a hand waive and throttled it up more. Boy, you guys shoulda seen what a bit of speed does to those sneering fast-speed cyclists. Off-road on a straight he wasn't going to catch 39mph, how's that for a have a nice day?

    After emerging at Balboa, I could see him catching up but it didn't matter anymore. As he passed he was really ****ed and my ignoring him with a grin probably heated him up more. I just stuck to the 8 to 12 mph ride at this point and he eventually disappeared and oh, I spotted two incoming officers as well. Red button and pedaling and waived they waived back and smiled so I knew I was okay.

    At home parked for a while after a 13 mile ride with plenty of battery to spare. After a couple of hours, I hoped on the bike and rode up Balboa to Granada Hills Bike shop and the guys there. mainly I wanted the newer adjustable stem for my bike, so they had to see the stem type I would require. Turned out they didn't have the stem in stock but would order the right one. Great guys, they are at S.F. Mission and Balboa. If you are in the area and need bike stuff they are just great as a resource. When I finally got home, the round trip for today was at 23 miles. This means I have a bike that can get me across the valley and back home in a single charge depending on the terrain and speed I use. Drop me a note in this thread let me know what you think and not to worry. I generally don't like high speed in fact I most likely will be fine at 15 maybe 6 at most. Stay safe everyone.
     
  8. slickdude

    slickdude Member

    There is the great news and then there is the horrible news. I think I'll end this on a very positive note so let's get the horrible news first. I found out why the pedal assist doesn't work. The Chinese at Papamotors said "so sorry, so sorry, you pay 50 dollar and we ship you right controller, has special sensor. We sent you wrong controller." That means I have to untie all of the wiring and remove and then ship my controller at 50 bucks back to China. Then they will ship me the right controller. Makes ya wonder what someone was smoking over there when they put the kit together. Now I am wondering did I even get a 1000 watt motor?

    Now for the great news. PAS issue aside. Recharges after about 30 1/2 miles of riding on a 2amp charger at about 6 hours or less. If you want my impressions of this perfect bright weather day let me just post it all in the next post and describe my experience at the park and lake as totally BEACHEN!!! This is what motor biking should be. If you have a bike and they can ship you stuff that works and the "RIGHT" items the 1000 watt 48volt kit is worth it.
     
  9. slickdude

    slickdude Member

    I got out today about 10am, bright sunny, slight chill but decided no jacket as it would warm up. Today's weather was clear blue skies and it was just one of those perfect days where you realize you are going to have fun and enjoy it, even remember it for a long time to come. Too bad I couldn't shoot video for all of you to enjoy. I am going to make that investment later hopefully. I rode the bike on throttle to the Lake Balboa Bike Path and started out. Took off, got to 19mph and held it there. As I spotted some people walking slowed it to pedaling speed then got passed them. Back at 17mph cruised to Balboa and enjoyed the wide open bike path. Then I hung a right south on Balboa and took that down to the bridge at about 16mph. At the bridge I went under and zoomed right up the other side with no effort at all. Too bad my PAS system wasn't working, as I would have loved trying that out. Surprisingly for a Saturday there weren't a lot of folks in the area, not sure why. Maybe they were xmas shopping I suppose. Went around the lake, then stopped for a drink at the entrance to the woodley golf course parking lot. Got a nice sip then continued on listening to my music and cruising. Spotted several very lovely :D chicks jogging va va va voom! Continued on to woodley then took that south to burbank blvd. From there over the bridge, again effortless going up the small incline, across the bridge and the L.A. River below, paused a moment to stop and take in a view of ducks waddling through the river waters and fauna in the surrounding area. Then on to the dirt path and road turn off for some off-roading along the L.A. River banks. I found some dirt trails and got a chance to test this off-road and it performed like a champ, even in thick weeds, not an effort at all. Along the river I could really open this up when no joggers were near and wow, what a rush guys. I cannot tell you that with 30 1/2 miles of riding and plenty more battery to go and the power of the set up, it made riding a ton of fun. I also wanted to gauge something else. Back on the bike path a guy shot by me on his ten speed setup. You know the type, bullet helmets and shorts riding outfit. I stopped of course at twenty to stay legal, but I have to estimate he was doing about 15mph faster. It seems that certain bikes are very fast with riders and that brought to mind why an EBike is limited to twenty when a human power bike is unlimited more or less. I see these guys and some gals zooming like that all the time.

    So, to sum up the Papamotors final experience so far with everything, yes if they ship the right stuff, it is very worth it in the end. What is nice about the Papamotors kit is you can transfer everything to a new bike at any time. In fact, getting a new bike and their kit is probably the cheapest serious alternative to more expensive mtn bikes. Yes you don't get all of the power and speed, but then again you save a ton of money too. I can also see this kit on the 29 inch beach bike cruisers as a great potential. If you keep your speed at 15 mph on average, you can easily stretch riding distance probably close to around 40 miles. I will have more to say once I go through and get the corrected controller from them that includes pedal assist. Then I should be able to finalize this project for all of you.
     
  10. slickdude

    slickdude Member

    Well Papamotors refunded me a controller difference which indicates they are an honest company to deal with. They admitted to making a mistake but it turned out it probably wasn't. I have to say after dealings with both them and especially with Mr. Li Ping and his Ping battery so far I have the utmost respect for their work and units. Mr. Ping responds to my emails as does Papa Motors pretty quickly and both have proven stable resources. I have read other testimonials on the Ping battery elsewhere on the net and it seems all positive and now I know why...because they are interested in their customer's needs and support them thoroughly and honestly at this point at least in my own case. Just wanted to pass that on.

    Now on the pedal assist issue. The Papamotors definition is you pedal and the motor kicks in. You stop pedaling and it turns off. The motor though kicks in at high throttle. They do offer a controller with a limitor but it still doesn't seem to work as a PAS system should and I noted this to them in my email. A PAS should let you pedal and gradually assist you in your pedaling, not go balz out full throttle. Anyhow, that aside my battery has given me a range of about 36 miles no pedaling. It is capable of speeds but honestly, 15 mph works fine for me in almost all cases. One benefit of a 48 volt system is the energy to climb just about anything. I have found that going up hills at decent speeds is easy, not like before.

    My best advice is get yourself a mountain bike, no front disc brake with some or dual suspensions and a strong fork dropin either rear or front. The front kit is still preferable to go with. The 1000watt motor 48 volt battery setup is your best option. Pricewise the 500watt setup is very close price wise so the 1000 watt motor is a no brainer.. Avoid buying an ezip or low end bike especially with sla batteries. The Ping LifepO4 battery is the best way to go. Papamotors uses a ping 15ah battery in their 48 volt kit. It works out will. Other suggestions, the seat post batt rack and the kickstand is also a good choice too. Might as well get them with the free shipping at the onset.

    As for mounting stuff, see my photos and notes above in this post. They seem to have stood up so far.
     
  11. Racie35

    Racie35 Member

    wow...lots of good info..thankyou slickdude
     
  12. slickdude

    slickdude Member

    By the way. The 1000 watt motor makes a sort of quiet two-stroke sound, very quiet though, but it has that tin can twanginess sound to it that two-stroke gas engines make, for what it is worth. Has been a blast riding it.
     
  13. slickdude

    slickdude Member

    Okay so wenmt riding today at the park, my 8th ride and normal bike path ride nothing too bumpy and wah lah look at the seat post bike rack.

    [​IMG]

    and another angle...

    [​IMG]

    and yet another angle...

    [​IMG]

    and another angle...

    [​IMG]

    and finally what the bike looked like before this broke and collapsed atop the rear tire while riding only my 8th time :eek:

    [​IMG]

    As you can see per the manufacturers instructions the controller and battery are the only weight mounted on this. I emailed them requesting my credit back, will follow up in a new posting what happens. So far they have been very honest and supportive, no complaints.

    My brother in law is an aerospace engineer who worked in the space shuttles. He took one look at the broken rack and said they welded the shaft to a cast metal piece. He said that is usually a weak weld and was not surprised that it broke. Forgot but I think the rack was around 50 bucks, just too lazy to look right now. Anyhow, I got a traditional mount rear rack and installed it this afternoon. Bike back together and now very sturdy. The rest of it appears to work well.
     
  14. professor

    professor Active Member

    Great write up.
    That is a lot of weight cantilevered off the seat post, thus breaking (dumb design),
    A good idea would be drop support legs down to the rear triangle.
     
  15. slickdude

    slickdude Member

    Well thanks professor. I must say that Papamotors and Ping batteries have proven themselves honest and super business resources. Tonight they refunded me the full purchase price on that post. In a sense it is a shame, because it seemed solid and looked very nice. It could be I had a defective one, but I want to stress they have refunded my rack as I had already replaced it from a local bike shop. Yeah the flying post probably would be better as a standard rack. In my case of usage I ride mainly a concrete bike path, some dirt but no real big bumps. I also ride pretty slowly too. My speed averages around 12mph on average give or take so again I followed their procedures.

    For those of you wondering, this company has to me proven itself rock solid in taking care of me. I feel that having dealt through my life time with many companies, these guys and gal (Julie) do care about me, and I cannot stress how very important that is. Both Papamotors and Li Ping's battery have proven so far to be great folks.
     
  16. BigBlue

    BigBlue Active Member

    You might want to consider a double layered rack that has a locking mechanism that locks the battery case into the rack. Do a Google search. I know I've seen them while searching for electric kits.

    Happy Holidays,

    Chris
    AKA: BigBlue
     
  17. slickdude

    slickdude Member

  18. LR Jerry

    LR Jerry Well-Known Member

    I know must electric guys are really green. Are you a light enough shade of green to use propane? If so then you could have extreme riding time on your electric bike. You can use a 14 cc 4 stroke model plane engine to power a 24, 36 or 48 volt alternator. A circuit board can be designed to cut the small engine on when your battery runs low to provide power to the motor and charge the battery. Then cut off when he battery is charged. I'd use one of the small propane bottles plumbers use when soldering copper pipe. A pressure gauge could be used to let you know when the bottle needs to be changed. Things like propulsion generators, regenerative braking and solar panels could also be used to put power back into the battery. Hybred systems is an area nobody is building in right now. Just something to think about.
     
  19. BigBlue

    BigBlue Active Member

    Here you go:

    Hybrid.jpg

    Seriously, there have been an attempt in the past (I think 2008) on this forum to develop a hybrid system.

    14cc engine isn't going to produce much energy from a generating source. Approximately 1hp = 745 Watts - more like 500 Watts with inefficiencies.

    Chris
    AKA: BigBlue
     
  20. LR Jerry

    LR Jerry Well-Known Member

    You've misunderstood the purpose of the 14 cc engine. Its only function is to provide mechanical power to turn a 48 volt alternator. The small engine is in no way being used to propel the bike directly. A 48 volt 1500 watt motor is to be used for that purpose. The engine would only come on once the battery dropped to a certain set point. The alternator would then provide power to the motor and at the same time recharge the battery. Once the battery was charged the engine would cut off and the battery would take over as an electrical power source. As an added note I see people are attempting to try to build these bikes. I hope my idea in some way may help. Will be posting videos and pictures on my multispeed fully automatic drive system soon.
     
    Last edited: Dec 26, 2012
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