18 mile commute. Help build dream DIY!

DannyT

New Member
Hello everyone,

After lots of lurking, I’m finally making the switch from my motorized bike (2 stroke) to electric. I love my motored bike because the response is instant, it pulls, and I don’t need to peddle to actuate the motor, if that makes sense. I want to pull on a throttle and feel it accelerate.

Now, onto the specifics.
  1. I live in San Diego, and my commute is almost entirely flat. My commute is 18 miles. It seems I’ll need a capacity of 25-30 miles, so that I can charge it to 80% capacity for a longer battery lifetime.
  2. I’d like to be able to remove the battery, so I can charge it at my desk at work.
  3. I want a bike that hauls ass. I’m aware of the 28 mph maximum for class 3 ebikes in California. I would like to build a bike that goes 30, and I’m willing to shell out $$
Thanks in advance everyone, and I look forward to hearing your input!
 

linklemming

Well-Known Member
Just buy a juiced CCX, you can run it in R mode up to about 31mph.

Since they are also in SD, you could pick it up locally or get it really fast via shipping.

Throttle is pretty lame IMHO, if thats your goal. Response/acceleration is much better when you pedal.

BBSHD kit from Luna might work well for you
 

DannyT

New Member
Just buy a juiced CCX, you can run it in R mode up to about 31mph.

Since they are also in SD, you could pick it up locally or get it really fast via shipping.

Throttle is pretty lame IMHO, if thats your goal, good luck on your build
thanks for the reply! Would you mind elaborating on your opinion about the throttle?
 

linklemming

Well-Known Member
The throttle is just lame, no other way to describe it. Pretty much the slowest way to get to speed and the most boring way to ride(I was a sport bike junkie in NCAL for 10 years)

Its MUCH faster if you just put it on high assist and pedal, hard to give an exact measurement but its 'noticably faster when you pedal'.

And possibly faster still if you hold the throttle and pedal, its a special mode on the CCX which goes to max power untill it hits 20mph, then it defaults to standard power as defined by the power level. In R mode, this probably doesnt matter. Its really useful if you are in low power modes but want to accelerate quickly.

Lots of high power builds at endless-sphere.com and electricbike.com

A great video on the CCX


Maybe try to get a Juiced Hyperfat 1100?
 
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hurricane56

Active Member
If you're willing to do DIY there's going to be plenty of options for you. I think a big factor is going to be how well you want all the parts integrated. You could easily get a donor bike with a frame geometry that fits your riding style and get a mid-drive like a BBSHD or hub drive and controller setup from ebikes.ca

For the type of mileage and terrain your describing, you'll want to have at least a 1kw battery pack that can sustain a minimum of 1000w or 25-30amps. I have a very similar commute profile to yours and my 1kw pack is decent for the warmer months, but I usually hit the low voltage limiter in the winter.

I think if money isn't a factor, there's a company called High Performance Cycles that is using the Bafang Ultra mid-drive. That's what I'd be looking at.

 

DannyT

New Member
If you're willing to do DIY there's going to be plenty of options for you. I think a big factor is going to be how well you want all the parts integrated. You could easily get a donor bike with a frame geometry that fits your riding style and get a mid-drive like a BBSHD or hub drive and controller setup from ebikes.ca

For the type of mileage and terrain your describing, you'll want to have at least a 1kw battery pack that can sustain a minimum of 1000w or 25-30amps. I have a very similar commute profile to yours and my 1kw pack is decent for the warmer months, but I usually hit the low voltage limiter in the winter.

I think if money isn't a factor, there's a company called High Performance Cycles that is using the Bafang Ultra mid-drive. That's what I'd be looking at.

thank you! I appreciate your acknowledgment of how I want to DIY. I’m looking to spend <1500. Sorry if my post was misleading about price! I understand there are lots of factors at play here, but would you mind telling me how long your commute typically takes? Can’t wait for a beautiful bike ride to replace the soul sucking traffic. I loved riding my motored bike in college. Looking forward to a superior option!
 

Browneye

Well-Known Member
And you can charge your battery all the way up without issue. Charge and go.
Luna has some really nice bikes at reasonable prices. Or they can sell you a kit to do your favorite steed otherwise. Nice they're not so far away you can't get in your car and go see them, talk to them. Their specialty is making custom ebikes.

I've toyed with buying a purpose-built eMTB, but sourcing a nice pedal-bike and converting is looking more and more attractive. If you like to pedal the mid-drive is the way to go. If you want a motorized bike with thtrottle a geared hub-drive would also work.

And yeah, a throttle is fine, or not, kind of irrelevant, really. Most anything will got 18 miles no problem, likely round trip if you just get a higher amp pack.

You're in e-bike mecca here in so-CA...so try out everything around and you'll learn real fast what you really like. I'm less familiar with SD, but OC has all the options. Come visit Sam at Fullerton Electric bikes - he'll edumacatecha. ;)
 

DannyT

New Member
And you can charge your battery all the way up without issue. Charge and go.
Luna has some really nice bikes at reasonable prices. Or they can sell you a kit to do your favorite steed otherwise. Nice they're not so far away you can't get in your car and go see them, talk to them. Their specialty is making custom ebikes.

I've toyed with buying a purpose-built eMTB, but sourcing a nice pedal-bike and converting is looking more and more attractive. If you like to pedal the mid-drive is the way to go. If you want a motorized bike with thtrottle a geared hub-drive would also work.

And yeah, a throttle is fine, or not, kind of irrelevant, really. Most anything will got 18 miles no problem, likely round trip if you just get a higher amp pack.

You're in e-bike mecca here in so-CA...so try out everything around and you'll learn real fast what you really like. I'm less familiar with SD, but OC has all the options. Come visit Sam at Fullerton Electric bikes - he'll edumacatecha. ;)
Thanks browneye, and thank you to the forum for the educated and thoughtful responses! I’ll be visiting some places and finding out what works best for me. Like I mentioned above, what I love about my current bike (despite its many flaws) compared to my former roommates Lectric ebike is that when we ride down the road together I’m coasting on the throttle while he seems to be peddling his butt off in order to actuate the motor.
 

hurricane56

Active Member
For sure, my current setup started out as a Juiced Bike HyperFat1000. It was roughly $2700 during a pre-sale. That was also not including the upgraded fast charger that is made by GrinTech (ebikes.ca). After 500 miles, the stock controller started acting up and I rewired the the whole bike using a GrinTech controller and reusing the stock Juiced Bike torque sensor. It will roughly do 1600w at full charge, 48v system, and be able to still do 1400w at the end of my 17 mile commute.

I usually have 35% of battery left after a usual ride, but colder weather in Northern California will have me almost empty the battery after my morning commute. Based on my commute route, I'm doing half of the ride on city bike lanes, and about half on a road that runs through a nature preserve with little to no car traffic. For that half of the ride, I can push the max power and hold a cruising speed at or above 30mph. The whole route takes me on average 45-47 minutes, I think the last time I checked my average speed, I was doing 23.5mph.

Working with a $1500 budget isn't impossible, but you're probably looking at getting a rear hub motor on donor bike and connecting that to your own controller and battery pack. Perhaps lunacycle or em3ev.
 

rich c

Well-Known Member
Thanks browneye, and thank you to the forum for the educated and thoughtful responses! I’ll be visiting some places and finding out what works best for me. Like I mentioned above, what I love about my current bike (despite its many flaws) compared to my former roommates Lectric ebike is that when we ride down the road together I’m coasting on the throttle while he seems to be peddling his butt off in order to actuate the motor.
If he's peddling his butt off to "actuate" the motor, he's doing something very wrong.
 

DannyT

New Member
For sure, my current setup started out as a Juiced Bike HyperFat1000. It was roughly $2700 during a pre-sale. That was also not including the upgraded fast charger that is made by GrinTech (ebikes.ca). After 500 miles, the stock controller started acting up and I rewired the the whole bike using a GrinTech controller and reusing the stock Juiced Bike torque sensor. It will roughly do 1600w at full charge, 48v system, and be able to still do 1400w at the end of my 17 mile commute.

I usually have 35% of battery left after a usual ride, but colder weather in Northern California will have me almost empty the battery after my morning commute. Based on my commute route, I'm doing half of the ride on city bike lanes, and about half on a road that runs through a nature preserve with little to no car traffic. For that half of the ride, I can push the max power and hold a cruising speed at or above 30mph. The whole route takes me on average 45-47 minutes, I think the last time I checked my average speed, I was doing 23.5mph.

Working with a $1500 budget isn't impossible, but you're probably looking at getting a rear hub motor on donor bike and connecting that to your own controller and battery pack. Perhaps lunacycle or em3ev.
I love the idea of that. Do you have any recommendations for battery packs, controllers, and hub motors off of lunacycle? Is a huffy beach cruiser viable?
 

hurricane56

Active Member
If you're going to use a donor bike, I'd recommend using a good quality hard tail mountain bike. Converting a beach cruiser would probably work, but if you're talking about speeds over 20mph, or in your case wanting to cruise at 30mph or above, getting a good strong bike frame as the foundation is crucial.

Battery packs can be purchased at various online retailers. A good place to start your search would be figuring out what voltage and capacity. A 48v or 52v system with more than 15ah is what you'll want.

Motor choices have been debated on this forum extensively. Motor configurations of all types exist. Mid-drive, rear hub, front hub, all wheel drive, direct drive, etc. If you can find someone close by to try their setup, you can get a feel for what will work. Generally, I think for a flat commute, a geared rear hub or direct drive is very efficient and does not wear through chains as quickly as a mid-drive.

The electronics part that is the controller, display, and pedal assist system also come in all shapes and sizes depending on requirements. You could easily spend $500 on a GrinTech PhaseRunner, or less than $50 for a generic motor controller on eBay. Just make sure the controller is compatible with the power and amps that the battery can supply. Controllers can take pedal assist signals from torque sensors, cadence sensors or both. I find that torque sensing is the way to go to provide more natural acceleration.

It's a ton of fun trying to find the right components and then piecing it together. I'd recommend going to the endless sphere forum for more technical information. Also, the ebikes.ca website has a lot of information about the individual components. Even though they describe their products, you can learn a ton about ebike systems from reading their articles.