E Rider Forums Our Community Love our E30, but there is something not quite right

This topic contains 22 replies, has 5 voices, and was last updated by  Dominic 1 year, 7 months ago.

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  • #3233

    Dominic
    Participant

    Firstly, let me say my wife and I both love our E30 – it is fabulous in looks and for very short journies for us.

    Ken and Tim are both excellent for after sales and are endeavouring to help with our issues but we can’t help but feel something is not quite right… so following on from advice from them and PaulIOM I checked over the bike and did another test today using MapMyRide on my iPhone to track the mileage and speed in relation to the landscape.

    To start with the main voltage was 68.3v (13.65-13.67v across each battery) and in 23 minutes at an average speed of 23.1mph I did 8.84 miles – which was not too bad. (MAPMYRIDE LINK) Image Outward Journey Profile

    The odometer read and an increase of 19.1km, which is 11.8 miles, event though I had only done 8.84 …
    The speedometer had been off the chart past the red on some downhills, even though my max speed was only 27.5mph – so neither of those appear to work correctly.

    On arrival, the battery read 62.7v overall and about 12.5v individually.

    I worked at the location from 9:15 am to 13:30 and then headed back…
    I checked the battery again and 63.6v (so a little recovery) and though individually still reading 12.5v

    The journey back was not so enjoyable…

    Slightly shorter, due to a one-way system, (MAP MYRIDE LINK) but as you can see from the Return journey profile graph all good until about 13 minutes in and then the power just starts dropping off until such a point that I end up having to walk the bike up even slight inclines… (only going 4-6mph) may be more evident from the splits per mile image – overall average speed 18.3mph and 28 mins in total.

    When I got home I checked the batteries again and the results are – overall 58.9v and individually 11.7 – 11.8v

    The odometer read that my total distance was 37.9km (23.55) miles, but in reality, I had only done 8.54 miles on my return trip so 17.38 miles (5 miles less) so something is not quite right in that unit either.

    Any hints / suggestions on what we can do to get the performance similar to that of Paul would be appreciated.
    Would be very interested to see your ‘mapmyride’ or equivalent logs of using the bike to collate real world data. The app is free on iOS and Android.

    Many thanks – great product, great people, great community – please help…

    (In the journey profiles – speed is blue line and elevation is red line…)

    #3237

    Paul IOM
    Participant

    I have found that the speedo and odometer are a bit optimistic, probably.out by around 5mph when checked against gps.

    In relation to rwnge, how old is your model 30?

    #3240

    Dominic
    Participant

    Hi Paul,

    Yours is a lot closer than ours then – our reads over 50mph whilst the actual speed is under 30… I guess ours is about 33% out – I do wonder if they fitted an odometer for a bigger wheel diameter – Ken – Is there any way to check?

    Regards age – ours was registered on 22/08/2016 – so less than 4 months old and only done 416km (on the odometer so really around 275km, or 171 miles – so still new essentially.

    Our low beam is also very dim, not sure if that is an indication of anything?

    Thanks for your suggestions.

    #3243

    Paul IOM
    Participant

    It sounds like you have a problem somewhere, your batteries are still fresh, my original model 30 is over a year old and has done over 2000km, it has lost a little in battery endurance but is still returning better mileage than the results you are getting.

    The thing is your voltages sound spot on, so I wonder if you have a fault elsewhere, maybe the controller is faulty, or is getting a false voltage reading which is making it shut down early, I think they are configured to prevent over discharge of the batteries, and I’m wondering if your controller is pulling the power back early.

    I’m far from an electronics expert (or I’d have mine pimped up and doing 70mph by now) but maybe Ken can exchange your controller to see if it makes a difference.

    There are some experts out there on various forums such as ‘V is for voltage’ but they lose me in seconds once they start trying to explain things, I’m a piston and spark plug person who is slowly learning about volts, amps, watts etc.

    #3244

    Ken Ferguson
    Keymaster

    Hi Guys

    This is a great discussion and exactly what this forum was set up for!!! In particular, thanks again to Paul for his contribution.

    We could try swapping Dominic’s controller but I would be astonished if that was the issue. The controllers are all factory set to the same settings.

    As we have discussed directly, I suspect Dominic’s range issues are related entirely to terrain (perhaps exacerbated by the recent cold snap). There seems to be remarkably little research in respect of the effect of hills on EV range but I suspect that going up a steep slope does not take twice as much juice but perhaps five, or even ten times as much as driving on the flat.

    This is why we state in out T&Cs “Please note that the range of electric vehicles is dependent on a number of factors including body weight, terrain, wind speed and tyre pressures and the maximum ranges quoted can by no means be guaranteed. In truth, the only way to be sure that a bike will accomplish a particular journey is to try it.”

    If customers have a specific journey they are buying the bike for they should test it out on delivery. If it is not suitable they have the option, under the Distance Selling Regulations, to return the bike within a week of delivery. As Dominic is aware, we are working to give him a trial with the new City bike and hopefully that will solve his problems.

    #3245

    Dominic
    Participant

    If customers have a specific journey they are buying the bike for they should test it out on delivery. If it is not suitable they have the option, under the Distance Selling Regulations, to return the bike within a week of delivery.

    Hi Ken, I must admit I was not aware of this – but it was not possible anyway.

    The bike was delivered on the 11th August, but we were not able to get it on the road until the 22nd August as we had to register the bike. I got the plate the same day as the registration arrived.

    I image most customers are in that situation?

    #3246

    Paul IOM
    Participant

    http://www.ev-propulsion.com/EV-calculations.html

    Here is an interesting article regarding range from an EV anorak, note his comments about inclines.

    He is talking about cars so all the figures are much bigger, but the calculations can be scaled down to our smaller amounts of volts/watts/amps.

    Interesting stuff

    • This reply was modified 1 year, 10 months ago by  Paul IOM.
    #3248

    Ken Ferguson
    Keymaster

    Thanks Paul.

    According to the article you link to a 5 degree gradient uses twice as much juice. Presumably this means that a 10 degree hill would use four time as much?

    Anyway it is clear to see the effect that driving in a hilly area can have on range.

    #3250

    Paul IOM
    Participant

    It sounds entirely feasible Ken, but he lost me with things like “Peukerts Effect”….I thought that was something caused by too much alcohol followed by a kebab 🙂

    #3252

    Dominic
    Participant

    Hi Paul
    A very interesting article indeed.
    So the Peukert effect would suggest that you should get twice the range in the city than the lead acid e30 even if nothing else was different.

    LiFe batteries should work better on hills too and recover better after a hill than lead acid.

    Looking forward to trying it out.

    Be an interesting exercise to coat up upgrading the standard city to LiFe.

    I am thinking putting an ammeter on the bike to measure the draw could be a useful exercise to be able to judge real capacity.

    Tesla manage to have very accurate range on their cars, so there is a way to do it with use of google map or something to give you gradients.

    Any ideas of an ammeter? Probably needs to be Bluetooth and log to the phone.

    Thanks

    #3253

    Paul IOM
    Participant

    Hi Dominic, I have so far only done around 4 short trips on my ‘City’ but a couple of those have been around 9 miles with a couple of serious hills, and the battery meter doesn’t move from full, i’m curious about its range too and hoping to get time to take it for a longer run soon, but it is already apparent from my short trips that the range is going to be better.

    Regarding upgrading the batteries on the existing bike, I priced this project up last year, and it wasn’t worth the cost and effort, it came out around £750 to replace with Lithium, which meant it was cheaper to buy the new model instead.

    The problem with a conversion is it is not just a case of sticking in some different batteries, you also need a compatible charger, and an on-board BMS (Battery Management System) as Lithium needs a specific management system to prevent over discharge.

    Without a BMS you will fry the batteries the first time voltage drops below a certain point, there is also a possibility of the controller having to be changed too, so the whole lot adds up to quite a sum of money, hence the higher asking price of the new model, which I felt was still far better value than attempting a DIY conversion, especially given the potential for things to go wrong.

    Apparently Lithium batteries behave very differently to Lead-Acid, there is no gradual fall off in performance, i’m told its a bit like running out of fuel in a car, you get full performance until the BMS detects a voltage drop to the pre-set minimum level, and it then shuts everything down to protect the batteries.

    #3254

    Paul IOM
    Participant

    Having read this guys really interesting blog, on the development of his E Scooter, I decided it wasn’t something I personally had the time to do, or fancied undertaking myself.

    Interesting reading though https://zenid10.wordpress.com/

    #3255

    Jason
    Participant

    This is an interesting thread to follow. I have a 7 mile round trip that I do every day for work, normally my 4 month old Model 30 is charged every night but I’ve forgotten to plug it in a couple of times, once last night and once a couple of weeks ago, when it was really cold. Both times I’ve had to get off and walk my bike back the last bit (500m) of the journey because it can’t get up the final incline, and can only manage 20-25mph for the last mile or so. I’m not particularly heavy either, about 65kg.

    I think the cold might be a factor as when I first started riding it in September I experimented with how far I could get it to go. I got up to 17 miles and it was slowing down to about 12mph up the final steep incline to my house and decided that was far enough, 12mph is a little embarrassing…

    I think I’ll try the battery voltage tests too (I get to buy a nice voltmeter for that) just in case a battery has gone funny, but I suspect it’s the cold weather and Brighton’s mega hills.

    #3256

    Jason
    Participant

    Here’s some elevation graphs coerced out of Google maps. The first one with the steeper bit at the end is my return journey.

    #3259

    Ken Ferguson
    Keymaster

    Hi Jason

    Welcome to the thread.

    There is no doubt that, amongst all the other factors, air temperature is a fairly big contributor to battery efficiency. A friend has a Tesla and says he notices a big difference and I’m told people are even charging their phones more often in Winter.

    Interestingly, my golf ball doesn’t go as far when I hit it either!!!

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