Cyclone Style Motors

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Local time
12:53 PM
Aug 7, 2007
Fairfax, VA
Anyone familiar with the electric bike kits of Cyclone ? They look a lot like those popular in Australia. The ability to send power through the chain and use the gears of the bike (without the addition of a gearbox) is interesting ... anyone have experience with these that might care to compare them with a BD or BL style hub motor ? Not asking anyone to say one is better than the other for I realize each has it's strengths and weaknesses - but a nice discussion would be very informative ... how are they with more volts ? how are the components in terms of durability and ease of use ? are they easy to hop up or are they "performers" right out of the box ... any tips/tricks/particulars worth noting ? How long was the install ?
I have not ridden any eBike yet, so I can't really comment. Check here for pretty much everything I can tell you about them..

I can't really comment on the kit as a whole since I will only be using the motor, external controller and throttle.

The motor looks and feels well built. I have that their heard the freewheeling crank is not very durable, but I won't be using it anyway. The freewheeling crank also looks like it is a custom part, at least, I don't know where you will be able to buy one locally.

The motor takes a standard BMX freewheel, though the one that it comes with apparently requires a non standard tool to remove it.
The motors are solid, the install depends on your skill level and tools on hand.. make sure the bike you choose has enough room between the wheel and the cranks as many bikes do not have enough room to fit the motors.

Very different animal than hub motors, not as stealth, but has the advantage of using the gears so you can climb hills at a slow speed, or get higher speeds with higher gearing ... realative to how much battery power you can spare.

Someone once said " some people can't figure out how to make a peanut butter sandwich " .. so install and usage opinions vary depending on the user.. i've seen all kinds of reports..

They do wear your chains out faster than hub motors.. naturally.. so if you mount this on a bike with a messed up drivetrain.. expect problems.

All sorts of pros and cons.. cheapest source i have found is direct from taiwan

and you deal with " Paco "
Ypedal - in the last three weeks, I've heard/learned a lot about "Hub" style motors from these forums and it's apparent that many people have had great success in getting their motorized hub kits to give both extended range and/or incredible improvements in speed and acceleration (you being a prime example) but has anyone heard if these frame mounted chain driving systems can be upgraded as easily and as readily ?
I'm in the process of learning that as i type this.. ( I received my 500 and 1000w kits last week ) ( will update the page as i bolt it on to a bike very shortly )

Problem with the chain driven setups and mods is that increasing volts will result in increased RPM at the pedals.. imcreasing amperage will also add power but there is a limit on how much you can push thru a regular bicycle derailer and chain before stuff wears out really fast..

It's a whole new world for me at this point, i need to test it out ! lol
The 500W and below Cyclones have the controller built into the motor body. Above that and you get the external controller.

Ypedal may be able to post some pics of the internals of his 500W motor ? I am also very curious to see how it is set up.

On the ES thread, I have posted a pic of the internals for my motor and It looks to be essentially the same concept as a hub motor, nice and simple.

Without seeing the <500W internals I would suggest you would be hard pressed to mod the controllers to handle increased amps or volts. Increased Amps is going to increase the motor's heat output, and it is only a physically small motor.

Increased volts will give you a higher chain speed, but you will probably be hard pressed to keep up with the chain when you pedal, assuming you plan to pedal assist ?

With the double freewheel I suspect it will be possible to fit two different sized freewheels, say a 14/18 combination. Pedals turn slower WRT motor RPM. This could be an option to make use of increased amps if you can figure out a way to mod the internal controller, though you have the heat dissapation issue. Not sure what sort of life you can expect out of your drive train either..

For the forseeable future I just want to get my trike running and reliable. I already have the wattage and gearing to pull 60 kph on the flats, and with piddly drum brakes even that takes a while to slow down from, so I am not that interested in over volting. I may have a look at increasing the amps to help me up the hills and help me carry a higher gear to keep the motor in it's efficent rpm range.

Overall, the Cyclone is a comparatively complex setup with unique characteristics, and in some respects difficult to modify. There also seems to be very few enthusiasts playing with them since hub motors are so easy to setup and have a well known mod potential. But there are a handfull of people on the forums playing with them, so hopefully as we start to tinker, some more info will become available.
I have no intentions of "racing" anyone or anything but since this project has a goal of producing a viable commuter, I'd like to have an electric powered bike that will cruise in the 25 MPH range for 17 miles per charge ... 30mph ability (even just occasional) and extended running time will be a nice bonus. I realize you can go very fast and possibly very far but it depends a lot on how much one is willing to spend. i am looking for the best cost / performance ratio - not the most elaborate set up or the most cool points ... I need to make it to work and back on one charge and move along smartly as to not get run over along the way. The pace and distance acheived by my cheapo frame mounted two stroke worked great but it sounded like 3 lawnmowers on steroids doing battle and the attention it got me is something I can live without - it wasnt always positive ... if I have done a bit of research on hub motors but it would be an injustice to not take a look at these frame mounted chain drivers as well - one (I have two) of my 2 strokes is listed in the for sale section to thin the herd before starting my electric bike experiement so in the mean time - I'm trying to satisfy my curiosities for info so I choose the best kit to suit my needs ... personally I think a brushed hub in the 500/600W range with 48V should suffice and those hub motors are nearly invisible - but the ability to run power through the gears already mounted on most rd/mtb just seems like such an elegant solution to how best power the bike - but as mentioned - "cool" and "real" are two different things and the only way to find out whats what is to see what happens when the rubber hits the pavement - lots of folks have examples of very impressive performing hub motored bikes - but I'd love to hear from the other camp about frame mounted chain drivers ... in the end, we'll all have our preferences and loyalties (I love my two strokes - cheap and loud, yes - simple/fast/strong, yes) but I'd love to see some comparisons from real life riders vs comparing sales literature
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