Saturday, April 30, 2011

Bosch Fat Packs BAT836 36V Batteries Falling Out of the Sky!

I mentioned that I was using Bosch Fat Packs (BAT836) 36V Litheon packs on the Tidalforce forum at Google Groups and one of the members there said that he had some BFPs that he would be interested in selling. He's going to get in touch with me on how many he has and how much he wants for them! Amazing how when it rains, it pours!


Thursday, April 28, 2011

Comparison of Tidalforce iO frame with S-750 frame

I took some photos of the two Tidalforce bikes that I have. The Tidalforce iO and the Tidalforce S-750. The iO is significantly longer than the S-750.

iO, iO, it's off to work we go...

Well, after many years of desiring for a "true" Tidalforce bike, it's wonderful to pick up the used iO last night. I have always loved this frame and the styling for this model. It's completely stock and has been in storage for the past 2-3 years. The batteries are weak but still hold enough charge to go around the block a couple of times. Previously, I have built-up a Tidalforce S-750 frame with an 500W motor and ancillary parts from everywhere... 

I plan on swapping out the front battery hub with a "B" pack made up of Bosch Fat Pack (BFP) 37V batteries. I have used the Anderson Powerpole connectors located below the seat to connect one BFP to the bike. I haven't installed the "jumper" to enable the "B" pack yet. The voltage of the BFPs is right at 37V nominal and 41.9V fresh off the charger. I also have some brand new Tektro brake calipers to swap out the worn ones. 

I was wondering if I could get some feedback on the motor. It seems to be running fine, however, does it need to be lubricated at all? I have a video of the motor in action here. Please take a look and let me know if it sounds "normal". I'm wondering if it is running a bit slow, which could be caused by the weakened NiMH batteries...

I plan on adding a Cycle Analyst to it to better monitor the battery and motor. I also plan on swapping out the weak front battery hub with a stock disc brake front wheel to lighten the load. 

I need to add a rear rack to hold the BFPs. Does anyone have a recommendation on a suitable rear racks for the iO? Email me at: ambroseliao AT gmail DOT com (replace the AT with "@" and DOT with "."


Wednesday, April 27, 2011

New Member of the e-Bike Family!

I picked up the newest member of my ebike stable this evening. Over the weekend, an ad appeared in my local Craigslist selling a Tidalforce iO Beach Cruiser bike. I immediately emailed the seller and went over to visit him the very next day. I have loved the design of the iO for a very long time so was eager to pick the bike up. Peter (the seller) wasn't sure if the batteries were able to power the bike and the battery would not charge, so I brought over one of my Bosch Fat Pack batteries which were the right voltage (37V) for the bike and was able to not only run the motor, but also to give a kick charge to the NiMH front hub battery so that it too was able to take a charge and started working! After confirming that the motor still runs, I picked the bike up tonight. It's a bit dusty and the chain is very rusty, but otherwise seems to be in excellent shape. The iO was ridden on the very dusty C&O Canal along the Potomac River so showed lots of tan dust around the motor and battery hub. I plan on cleaning it up this weekend and taking more pictures! Here's the bike as it came home tonight.

The rest of the photos of the bike are on my Picasaweb album here:

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Even More Bosch Fat Packs 36V BAT836l

I must be addicted to these batteries. This lot of 4 Bosch Fat Packs BAT836 36V Litheon batteries (BFPs) and a BC830 charger came up on Endless-Sphere for $150. I snapped them up and they arrived the other day. I have to say that I love these batteries. They are bulletproof (I've drained many down to 0V and they just recover completely), dead simple to manage (no BMS is needed), simple to charge (I've used NiMH chargers, LiFEPO4 chargers, and the BC830 which is designed for the packs and they all work fine), built like a tank (the plastic housing is extremely tough and protects the cells extremely well), and last forever (I've had mine for a long time and they seem to never go bad).

I love BFPs!

Monday, April 11, 2011

GoPro HD Hero Video Tour of My eBike

I was out doing some yard work when I realized that I had my GoPro on me and my bike was right there so I was inspired to do a video tour kind of like what GCinDC on the Endless-sphere forums did a while back. The bike is not quite ready to ride since the grips aren't attached and my battery isn't quite ready yet. however.....

I'm not used to recording videos of myself so it's a bit awkward and gawky/geeky. Not too surprising. Be sure to select 720P for a better view.

More later,

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Ergon GP1-L for Grip Shifters!

I received the GP1-L grip and tried to put it on my bike. The grips are designed for grip shifters but they are very long. It isn't a one-for-one swap with my existing grip which is a cheapy knobby job. I need to push the shifters almost an inch in towards the center in order to fit the GP1-L. The problem is that the Ergon grip mounts via a clamp that's close to the outside edge of the grip so you need to fully fit it onto the handlebar so that the end of the handlebar comes close to the clamp. I also noticed that I posted the wrong picture in my previous post. It looks like the one below.

It is super comfortable and allows for a much more natural and comfortable grip of the handlebars. I just need to find a way to make it work for me.

More later,

Friday, April 1, 2011

New Ergon GP1-L Grips

I did an impulse buy and bought a pair of Ergon grips for my ride. These are the very comfortable, ergonomically shaped grips that east the tension on your wrists from trying to hold on to your handlebars. The are super comfortable and spread the pressure across your entire palm instead of primarily to your fingers. It places your wrists at a carpal-tunnel reducing angle yet still allows for a full, strong grip to your bike.

More later,