Up grading batteries for 24v Ezip system

Discussion in 'Electric Bicycles' started by Will Snow, Aug 15, 2011.

  1. Will Snow

    Will Snow Member

    The batteries seem to be getting a little weak On my 24v Ezip kit, so thinking about replacing them. In the past I was told a good SLA battery was the most reliable but that was about four years ago.

    I am always interested in improving performance but good reliability always comes first with me. Besides, when it comes to the electrical department I am not sharp as I would like to be, so making modifications is something I keep hands off. I only said that to say, "if now days there are new better performing batteries than the SLA batteries, I would be interested".

  2. Neon

    Neon Member

    Well SLA batteries are still the cheapest batteries out there, but they don't perform as well as some of the newer battery technology. But SLA are so cheap that replacing them more often is not as big a deal. They are also more idiot proof. I'm not calling you an idiot BTW. But it's very easy i guess to mess up the newer batteries if you don't know What you are doing. Or the battery management circuit isn't up to par. I would say just take your old battery case apart. Take one of your two 12v batteries and head down to your local battery store. And see if you can get 2 slightly higher amp batteries. That may make enough performance difference for you.
  3. With battery power, Volts equal speed and power, Amps(or Amp hours) equal range(distance) you can travel on a charge. The e-bikekit direct drive hub motors I am using are designed to take voltages from 36 to 72, but I'm not sure about the Currie Ezip motor. Adding higher Amp batteries will increase your range, add to your weight, but not otherwise increase performance and with no danger of harming your motor. Adding another 12 Volt battery in series to increase your voltage from 24 to 36 will be heavier and greatly improve your power and speed, but may quickly burn up the motor or at least shorten it's life drastically. Get in touch with Curry to see if you can increase the voltage to their motors safely.

    I went with the more expensive LiFeP04 batteries from Ping. They last approximately 4-6 times longer than SLAs, weigh about 1/3 of what equivalent SLAs weigh, and are about 1/3 the size of equivalent SLAs. To change to higher tech batteries you will need to make sure they have a battery management system built in or buy a separate battery management system and you will need an appropriate battery charger. Most of the better high tech battery makers do include a built in battery management system and a small 2 or 3 Amp battery charger, with an optional higher rate charger available at extra cost.
    Last edited: Sep 15, 2011
  4. Neon

    Neon Member

    I guess my opinion on increased performance is quite a bit different than yours motorbikemike45. I consider increased range to be enough of a performance increase and not going 40+ mph. The controllers on the currie bikes can handle up to 50 volts and a maximum of 30 amps. The motors on the other hand may or may not handle more volts. I've seen many mods to the motors to keep them cool, but i don't consider it worth the effort to do them. The motors and controllers on these bikes only get warm even under heavy use. Overvolting requires more advanced cooling. I don't consider it worth the effort but Will may think differently. Extra cost are the magic words here. Yes SLAs are heavier and don't perform as well as LiFeP04 or Lithium-Manganese, heck even NIMH outperform SLA, but SLA are a heck of a lot cheaper. Usually with the currie bikes the motors usually only last about a year, more if not used much. Then they usually require new brushes and bearings, or a new motor.
  5. You are absolutely correct, Neon, when you say range is one important aspect of e-bike performance. My 2 e-bikes have 36V, 20Amp-hour and 48V, 15Amp-hour batteries. The 36V bike has a top speed of 22mph and a range of just over 38 miles on the flat with no pedaling and no wind. I must pedal assist on moderately steep hills. Acceleration isn't exactly neck snapping, but I guess you could call it "adequate". :) The 48V bike will eventually reach near 28mph, but I haven't tested it for range yet. I expect it will go about 30-35 miles on the flat with no wind on a charge. The acceleration is pretty good, for an e-bike. I must pedal assist on only the steeper hills, though I usually assist on any hills where it slows appreciably.
  6. ZnsaneRyder

    ZnsaneRyder Member

    38 miles is a lot of range, more than I would have expected from those batteries.
  7. bideronit13

    bideronit13 Member

  8. Will Snow

    Will Snow Member

    batteries and currie mod.

    Thanks, Good information

    This is partly a learning process for me so hear what I have done: I purchased a 36v controller, thumb control and charger. Wired the the bike for 36v and as suggested, bought three 12v 10amp SLA batteries from our local Battery Plus store.

    The bike tops out at 22mph as was said by one member and that is fast enough for me. So far it is doing just fine and the motor does not get hot, just a little warm. As was pointed out by Motorbike Mike and Neon the 36v will shorten the life of the motor.

    Here is what I have in mine: Find a strong brushless replacement motor that will handle the voltage and buy a second set of batteries, but Lithuim this time.

    I bought the Ezip kit and installed it on my bike just for a trial with Electric. So far I certainly like the quietness of the bike. I have put together several nice gas powered bikes but the quitness, no gas or oil is a treat because of the overall cleaness.

    Liked your comments and thanks for taking the time to post them. Do you think I am on the right track with the brushless motor and Lithium batteries?

  9. Neon

    Neon Member

    I don't think you could go wrong at all with a brushless motor. They are pretty much bulletproof from what i hear. Plus it's easier to find them in the voltage you would like. As a quick note, wattage is a consideration as well. As a rule 750 watts = 1HP. Nice to know to help make a decision later. For more info you can always take a trip to the Endless Sphere forum and have a look around and see what is suggested there. Those people know what they are doing.
  10. Will Snow

    Will Snow Member

    Thanks Neon, good suggestion about Endless Sphere. I will pay attention to wattage also when the time comes.

  11. slickdude

    slickdude Member

    Was just wondering, can I use the ezip sla case and install in place lithium batteries in that same case for my currie ezip and get a lithium charger?
  12. MikeJ

    MikeJ Member

    MotorbikeMike45 -

    Question for you... Can a builder place TWO medium-power motors (same make, model, etc) on a bike and have only one controller run both? For me, one motor, even a 750 watt, may not be powerful enough. But two might be. Sure there is more cost, but torque to get up and go has higher priority. I would place the motors as if in the corners of a box, so each would engage a chain for 90 degrees of the gear's sprocket.

    This may be hard to visualize, but if you do, what is your opinion?

  13. I think it would be possible, but the controller would have to be robust enough to handle the amount of current 2 motors could draw. When I was running the 48Volt battery I was pulling a little more than 1,100Watts when accelerating from a dead stop or up a steep hill when I allowed it to bog down, about 21Amps. With the 36Volt battery I'm normally pulling 850Watts or a bit more when accelerating from a dead stop, about 24Amps). Watts=VoltsxAmps, where Watts is a measure of work being done, Volts is a measure of the "umph"(like pressure in a water line) needed to do work, and Amps is a measure of the electric current flow while accually doing work(like the volumn of water flowing through a line). As long as you make sure the current(Amps) doesn't exceed the rating of the controller you will be fine. Remember, Volts equals speed and power, amphours equals range per charge. Pulling high amps for a long time drains the battery quickly. Assisting with pedaling, especially on long or steep hills, or when accelerating from a dead stop is one of the best ways to increace range. Once the bike is at top speed the Wattage draw drops down to less than half of the max draw during acceleration or when climbing a hill.
  14. slickdude

    slickdude Member

    Just asking my quote question again to anyone with knowledge who can reply to it.
  15. Nehmo

    Nehmo New Member

    The one piece of decent advice you received was to go to Endless-sphere. But it looks like you already wasted some money on lead-acid batteries. No matter. You'll be shopping again soon considering the rate lead-acid degenerate.
    On batteries, there's a lot to be said, but I will summerize to avoid all that said. For an ebike, Li-poly from Hobby King(HK). You may find other vendors, but ES people generally resort to HK. Don't buy used batteries. And, under no circumstances, buy lead-acid. LiFePO4 nanotech are not bad either. They're safer than Li-poly, they have a longer calendar life, and they have more charge-recharge cycles, but nothing easily available beats the specific energy (measured in Watt-hours/Kg) of Li-poly.
    For a motor, of course, go with Brushless. Brushed DC motors are obsolete. The choice is what kind of BLDC motor, and with ebikes, this is a choice between hub, geared-hub, frame-mount (usually mid-drive).
    You'll also need a Battery Management Unit (BMU) to keep from over charging or allowing to discharge too far.
    And you'll need a controller.
    The E-zip has a brushed DC motor that drives a freewheel sprocket on the rear wheel via a short chain. You could upgrade that bike, but you'll probably start from scratch.
    Last edited by a moderator: Dec 15, 2015
  16. slickdude

    slickdude Member

    Thanks Nehmo. I am now weighing getting a brand new bike with dual suspension and then installing a 48v 1000 watt system with a Ping LifePO4 on a bike from scratch, maybe sell the original ezip. The ezip ain't a bad bike though, pretty solid. I could upgrade it with a Papamotors kit which is what I have been considering. It's about a grand but a very nice system. The Ping LifePO4 is a 20amp battery so he claims at 48v it will have power plus long range. They sell a 5amp charger too so it can cut the recharge time in half from their free 2amp charger. About 59 bucks. The Papamotors uses gearless front or rear hub. I probably will stay with a front hub because it is a much easier install. I wasn't sure if the LifePO4 was the battery that bursts into flames as when the bike is not in use but charged, it is stored in a garage attached to the house... Anyhow here is the Papamotors setup I have been considering and the Ping battery seems to have a big following on the net with most everyone positive.


  17. slickdude

    slickdude Member

    My decision with the existing Ezip is going with the LifePO4 36 volt 15amp or 20 ah battery. Depends on how Ping would wire it. I need two leads, one red and one black and then the plug for the charger. I suspect the leads I wire the battery into are cut when I turn off the original switch for it. As for mounting it, battery bag on top of rear rack strapped down.
  18. I am using Ping LiFePo4 batteries rated at 36V 20 amphour. I had a 48V 15amphour battery from Ping, the same size as the 36V 20amphour battery, so interchangable in the battery boxes of my bikes, but I sold it on an e-bike. I like the longer range 20 amphour gives me and the 22MPH I get with 36V is fast enough for me. The Ping batteries come wired with a charging plug/port their battery chargers plug into. I understand the 48V 20amphour battery comes as 2 pieces, like 2- 48V 10amphour batteries that you wire together. Make sure you wire them together exactly as the instructions show. There is a battery management system that equalizes the charge to each cell and if you wire it wrong it could screw it up. Also be very careful to never touch the hot(red) and ground(black) wires together, shorting out the battery, as it may damage some of the very expensive cells.
  19. slickdude

    slickdude Member

    Thanks Mike, you have great advice. I have been in contact with Mr. Ping on this. He informed me a Ezip fork can't handle either the 1000 or 500 watt 48Volt systems. Papamotors has a differing opinion as they sell these fork torque add-ons to strengthen the fork drop ins. In this case since I am riding flat on the bike trails I am seriously going to consider this. I opened up the cover on my ezip motor and can't get it back together now. The magnets shot out with springs, a real bear to fix. But I was considering replacing the current ezip system anyhow. I know there is a currie site that sells 36volt motors and also controller for mainly scooters, not sure they work on my ezip trailz.

    Ping also pointed something out to me. My ezip being a 2011 model, the motor cannot handle more than 24volts as the older motors did. That being the case, I'll probably do a Papamotors on this and pull the old controller, wiring motor and battery rack maybe. Papamotors uses Ping batteries as Li pointed out to me so he still gets a sale and the Papamotors guys seem okay. The only thing that is a killer is the 100 bucks shipping charges...worse than tax :O
    Last edited: Oct 15, 2012
  20. DrkAngel

    DrkAngel Member

    25.9V Li-ion - Recycled!

    I decided to do an "in-depth" comparison of my Li-ion replacement vs the eZip oem SLA pack.

    ..... 25.9V 31.2Ah (9lb 12oz) = 808Wh ..... vs ..... 24V 10Ah** (15lb 2oz) = 240Wh (120-140Wh usable)
    Li-ion vs SLA.JPG
    SLA is a major heat producer - 40-50% wasted as heat!
    Li-ion and lipo, at modest rates, near 100% efficient. No noticeable heat production!

    SLA (10Ah) - expended in 1 hour = 6.14Ah *
    24V x 10Ah = 240wh
    .614C drain = 147w output to motor for 1 hour and 93wh wasted heat ~60% efficient
    1C drain (10A) = 240w output to motor for 1/2 hour and 120wh wasted heat ~50% efficient

    Li-ion - recycled laptop cells.
    25.9V x 31.2Ah = 808wh (Smaller than and weighs about 1/2 the 10Ah SLA pack!)
    .2C drain = 160w output to motor for 5 hours and 2-3wh wasted heat per hour ~98% efficient
    .333C drain = 260w output to motor for 3 hours and 10-15wh wasted heat per hour ~95% efficient

    The recycled Li-ions I use are designed for a .25-.33-.5C discharge rate. 2-4 hour runtime.
    Surge output, IMIO, should be limited to 1C. 31.2Ah pack for ~30A controller.

    *SLA batteries are typically rated at a 20hr discharge.
    A 10Ah discharged in 1hr, typically, outputs a meager 6.14Ah.
    **SLA pack rebuilt with 11Ah "rated".
    Last edited: Apr 28, 2017