Project E-Ray 2013

Discussion in 'Electric Bicycles' started by slickdude, Dec 29, 2012.

  1. slickdude

    slickdude Member

    Well, some time ago I mentioned building an electric and fast Sting Ray. Well with 2012 at an end and my Ezip project behind me now, I am going to make this the next year project. Stingray's have always looked like small, quick and fast bikes. A cool item from the 1960's era that I grew up with and now a little story before I go on.

    I grew up in the 1960's and when Schwinn came out with the "Orange Krate" I had always wanted one. What with the small wheel in the front and the Stick shifter what boy didn't back then? A few years passed it was 1970 and my dad finally took me to the local Schwinn shop. There it was my dream bike, a shiny brand new Schwinn Orange Krate with that big 5-speed stick shifter. I was ecstatic at the thought of getting it. However for ten bucks less there was the Schwinn Fastback and it was a burgundy red. The salesman was so smooth and my dad at the time wanting to shave a few bucks it was not going to be what I had wanted, but instead something else. After all, my dad pointed out the Fastback looked faster, it also saved him ten bucks. That meant I got a bike I didn't want and was never really happy with. I graciously thanked my father at the time but did tell him it really wasn't what I wanted. His reply was take it or get nothing. In hindsight I really should have graciously declined his offer and instead forgo the fastback.

    Well, decades passed and I got older, had cars got on with life but never had an Orange Krate or even an orange sting ray for that matter. Today I am going to rectify that and in a neat way.

    [​IMG]

    Now I know what you are all saying, it is not a Schwinn Orange Krate. You are absolutely correct. They don't make new Orange Krates these days with a 5 speed stick shifter, those are vintage and way IMHO overpriced.

    They do though, make a lightweight orange sting ray with banana seat and that is a great start. It is let's say, an Orange Krate wannabe, but I am going to step it up several major notches along with my neighbor who used to own a bike shop.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    The first thing is an under seat rack that can hold both a battery and a controller. In this case I am going to go thumb throttle. Next becomes the choice of wheels. They make a hub motor wheel 350watt that is a 36 volt system and it comes in get this, a 16 inch wheel. That means it looks like an Orange Krate. In my case it will be like having an Orange Krate with a motor. Imagine the heads that will turn on this clean looking bike. The 36volt battery is what they call a "can" battery and looks more like a water bottle which can be frame mounted as well. It won't have the fenders, stick shift, gear cluster on the back wheel, not even the slick tire or hand brakes. It won't go super fast but you know what, having a stingray that looks like the Orange Krate but does much more than the original ever did is payback. So for 2013, here come da E-Ray :grin5:
     

  2. slickdude

    slickdude Member

    Okay so let us get labels nailed down here. An E-Ray is an electric stingray. It has a front wheel of 20 inches and can be motorized back or front. An E-Krate is similar to the stingray except it has a smaller front wheel that is 16". So all things considered I am going to try and build an E-Krate. The smaller wheel up front won't make it super fast. Estimated speeds for a 20 inch wheel with a 350 watt 36 volt system peg it between about 16 to about 18mph though that is plenty fast for the smaller bike. So if possible here is what I plan to do to the orange stingray up top. It has the sprung front forks.

    1.) Seat issues for an older crowd. The sissy bar is 2 1/2 feet in length. Am going to a 36 inch sissy bar or may modify this one with drill holes a bit higher.

    2.) Rear rack of some type to sit under the seat. This will hold a 36 volt Lion Bottle Battery system and a controller.

    3.) A 16 inch motorized front wheel hub that in appearance resembles the old Schwinn Krate wheels.

    4.) Thumb Throttle or Twist Throttle. Many say go twist because it looks cool. But on this smaller bike I may well go with a thumb throttle.

    5.) This one I need your help with. I want my Orange Banana Seat 18" on this bike. I would like to know what "Gel" options are available. Ben looking but seems other than a velcro pad, there are no actual gel seat covers for banana seats. Might be a new market here to make and sell stuff for ;) Do please let me know what you find, thanks.
     
  3. wheelbender6

    wheelbender6 Well-Known Member

    I saw an e-muscle bike where the owner mounted his batteries under the banana seat. It looked very slick.
     
  4. slickdude

    slickdude Member

    Yeah, I will have to make a custom rack for under the seat. I am thinking I can mount the controller between the sissy bars. The biggest issues I have right now are these. There is no comfortable full gel seat in a banana seat design. There are few options for a 16 inch front wheel with a hub built in it. Remember the smaller front wheel will mean slower riding speeds. I may put this project off for a while until I revamp my old trike with a longer range battery. I am also trying to figure out where to get "E-Krate" stickers printed out.
     
  5. wheelbender6

    wheelbender6 Well-Known Member

    I think the only way to get a comfy banana seat is to modify an existiing one. Add gel padding to an existing banana seat and recover it yourself.
    You can get custom decals (like E-Ray) in the cycling section on EBAY. They will put whatever you like on the decals and have quite a few colors, fonts and sizes to choose from.
     
  6. slickdude

    slickdude Member

    I have decided to make this more of a longterm project for now. Probably tackle it towards the end of the year. The main reason is because I cannot locate a 16 inch front hub wheel setup that uses spokes. Also most packages for it use Li-ON batteries and those are flammable my preference being the LIfePo4 batteries instead so for now this becomes a later project. My newest conversion project will be posted in the trikes section.
     
  7. slickdude

    slickdude Member

    Well it has the 16 inch wheel which technically now makes this orange stingray a Krate. BTW, Schwinn doesn't have a lock on that term, it comes from rails and dragsters originally. Adding a 16 inch wheel to a stingray changes it from a stingray to a krate. Luckily I now own an orange krate, maybe not schwinn but an orange krate none the less. I talked to Papamotors and they said their axel was groomed for a 6 speed cluster, so the rear wheel motor has an axel that is too long. This means I am back to motorizing the front wheel. In a sense it also adds more weight to the front wheel as well.

    Will apprise as this project unfolds over the end of the year.
     
  8. slickdude

    slickdude Member

    Now an Orange Krate. A Krate is actually a dragster term not owned by Schwinn, just like the color orange. A Krate is a dragster type vehicle that has a large rear wheel, usually a slick, and a small wheel. With a 16 inch wheel I am now at a dilemma of sorts. Talking to Papa Motors they make a 20 inch motorized rear wheel, but it has an axle longer than the standard drop in in the rear which is exactly 4.50 inches. This is because my bike is a coaster brake model. They do have a motorized front hub that is 16 inches but it is flat black, not chromed. Thus back to square one. Talked to Li Ping and a 36 volt battery LifePo4 can be made in length to fit under seat. So it goes back to the motorized spoked front hub in 16 inch size.
     
  9. wheelbender6

    wheelbender6 Well-Known Member

    As Johnny Carson used to say, "I did not know that".
     
  10. slickdude

    slickdude Member

    Well, I think I am going to get a short seat post rack for under that banana seat, controller mounts onto the rear sissy bars. I am going to get a hub motor and go with a thumb throttle here. The small hub motor will have to be respoked into the front wheel and that might require stronger motorcycle style spokes to handle the torque. If I go 36 volt geared motor I probably can get away with regular spokes I am assuming. I am going to repaint the name EKrate on it. Essentially when I changed the stingray front wheel it changed the definition from a stingray style to a krate.
     
  11. slickdude

    slickdude Member

    I gave the bike to a needy kid. This project is at this point nil. I might try a 5kw build later.
     
Loading...