Experimental Electric Vehicles

November 7, 2012

End of Year Review: E-Speed

Filed under: Uncategorized — tonyhelms @ 12:51 am

This is the second summer season of riding the E-Speed motorcycle, it has been through a lot more charge cycles, and conquered more miles!

I started the season with 1,133 miles in April, and have finished with 2125 miles, so the total mileage of this season was 992 miles. Thus far the 60 mile range seems to remain solid, with no noticeable range degradation.

-The 2125 miles equates to-

18 dollars of total electricity usage.

47.2 gallons of gas NOT burned.

944 pounds of C02 NOT emitted into our air.

20 full battery charge cycles.

0 dollars given to foreign oil companies.

1 very happy EV owner!

I did have two issues with the motorcycle this season,

-Kickstand switch failure-

Occasionally the motorcycle would shut off on very light bumps, I quickly diagnosed it as loose contacts internally in the switch. A simple switch replacement fixed the problem.

-on-board battery charger failure-

Perhaps because I was one of the first to buy this charger, I may have received a faulty one, but never the less it failed on me and unfortunately because of the method I use to measure capacity on my motorcycle where I always reset the amp-hour used when I assume the battery has been fully charged, but in this case of charger failure I was assuming wrong, and I was left stranded about 10 miles away. This luckily will not happen again because of much better designed SOC measurement systems available now which will be implemented on the next motorcycle! The charger has been since replaced and been operational thus far.

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I also had the pleasure of riding with a (cute female) passenger many times this season, I was curious how it would effect efficiency and acceleration, but surprisingly it wasnt too bad, I lost a small amount of Wh/Mile and getting on/off the motorcycle is a little tricky. But it certainly doesn’t take away the efficiency or fun factor at all!

Although one thing I have learned on this motorcycle, is that its ground clearance is too low. I have scraped the front edge of the farrings on bumps and pot-holes around town. My next motorcycle will have a slightly higher ground height clearance to overcome such obstacles.

Thus far the motorcycle has been extremely reliable, enough so that I consistently used it for my work commute and errands around town. I attended two very fun and eye opening EV events to answer questions and display the bike. Hopefully we get another Indian summer like last and can ride through December!

Stay tuned for the next bike build…

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