Did you know that it is possible to modify a conventional bike to turn it into an electric one? In this article, Delta Wing are going to show you the way.
What are the advantages of riding an electric bicycle?
There are many reasons to ride a bicycle. Riding bike regularly not only contributes to your good health but also helps you save a fortune because you don’t have to pay for gas.
Most importantly, a bike can’t generate emissions; therefore, it’s also an excellent choice to protect our environment. However, the only problem is that we may get tired of long distance rides.
For these cases, electric bicycles are an alternative. They combine the agility, comfort, and portability of a bicycle, with the advantage of the capacity to travel much longer distances, without using much physical effort.
You can find some of these bikes in the market, with different prices and also distinctive characteristics (battery life, weight, and size). But what you probably did not know is that it is possible to modify your bike by adding an electric motor.
One of the advantages of conventional bicycles, perhaps the most important, is that they are sustainable since they do not use fuel like automobiles or motorcycles. In this sense, the electric vehicles still consume energy, but an electric motor is much friendlier to the environment than an engine of a car or motorcycle.
Modifying your bicycle is not as complicated as it seems. What you have to do is installing an engine and some other parts, and the most complicated thing is to make them work correctly together.
In this article, you can learn everything about that.
- Your bicycle
- One starter motor
- A master link for the bike chain you have.
- An accelerator
- One motor controller
- Some screws and bolts
Note: You can buy all these appliances and accessories at hardware stores.
Choose the bicycle
The first step is to choose a suitable bicycle to motorize it. It must be in good condition and be a resistant model, because it must carry, in addition to your own weight, between 10 and 15 kilograms more.
Also, you must have full suspension, and you probably need to change the tires to high-pressure type. The most effective will be ones that should go from 35 to 65 psi, which will increase the battery life.
It is also important that the bicycle has enough space between the driver’s legs, and also you need to have a rear bicycle rack (where you will place the batteries).
The battery is one of the essential parts of your project. You have to know its voltage before getting the other parts. Mostly, people often use one of between 24 and 36 volts.
The battery must also have a capacity of at least one-ampere hour for every 1.6 km (1 mile) in a 36-volt system, and be equipped with cables to connect everything.
Also, get a suitable charger for your battery. Possibly you can buy it at the same place.
Choose the starter motor
You will need a starter motor with a bicycle gear wheel on the output shaft, which needs to be compatible with the bicycle chain. Getting it is the most complicated part, but it can be available, for example, at stores that sell motorcycle parts. One with 250 to 350 watts will be fine.
Get a motor controller
The motor controller is a device that has a “brain” that regulates the amount of energy that passes from the batteries to the motor.
You will also need to get battery connectors that work with the controller.
Buy an accelerator
Get an accelerator with “hall effect,” which will help you adjust the speed of your bike.
1. Connect batteries
Below is the way you should connect them in series. Connect a cable from the positive (+) port of one to the negative port (-) of the other.
Also, you can connect the batteries in parallel. Connect the positive port of the first and second batteries and then join the negative port of both.
Connect in parallel
2. Build the bike
The idea is to mount the motor in the triangle that forms the structure of the bicycle and to connect a chain from the engine to a crankshaft sprocket. But how about cogwheel? The choice depends on the alignment.
3. Verify that everything works well
Test the things by holding the engine and spinning the chain around the crankshaft wheel along with the engine.
The master link is used to connect the two ends of the chain, but you can only replace one or the other link, so make sure you position the motor correctly. It should be firm but not adjusted. If it is loose or slippery, it could fall during quick acceleration or when going uphill.
4. Keep the motor stay firm
Then, with a pen or marker, trace the lines where you will need to cut the plate so that both the motor and the motor lock onto the bike.
Screw the engine to the plate, which must be attached to the bike’s structure at three points so that it stays firm. Use a plate to hold the motor.
5. Mount the accelerator
This simple method can help. Take a thin, stiff element, like the spokes of an old bicycle. Insert it between the handle and the handlebar, and pour a mixture of water and dishwashing detergent through the coat rack.
The liquid will go down to the handle so you can turn it.
6. Slide the accelerator towards the handlebar and adjust with a screw.
Maybe your accelerator also comes with instructions.
7. Connect the throttle cables to the controller, and those of the engine as well.
After this point, you should put the bike upside down and try to make the engine work.
Check the bike
8. Connect the battery to the motor semi-permanently.
9. If you have problems with the alignment of the chain, adjust it with washers.
In the end
That’s all to make an electric bike with a starter motor. Delta Wing hope our article will be a useful guide for those who are curious about the whole process. If you find it interesting, don’t hesitate to share it with your friends and family.