First kit just bought

MikeFB

Pedelecer
Jun 25, 2020
69
36
Well, after purchasing my first ebike just over 3 weeks ago, I've already picked up a cheap second hand conversion kit to fit to an old existing mountain bike.

Actually I have already fitted the kit to the bike today, but waiting for a crank tool so I can fit the PAS sensor.

Having never fitted a kit before, I was surprised how easy it was, even without any instructions. Although it was just a front hub motor kit.

I have a feeling this wont be the last conversion I'll do and look forward to many years of enjoying this new hobby.
 

Bikes4two

Pedelecer
Feb 21, 2020
67
25
Nice one and we look forward to hearing about the whole project in more detail including the kit you purchased and how the ebike ride experience turns out.
 
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MikeFB

Pedelecer
Jun 25, 2020
69
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Got the bike on the road Friday for a short run and it was interesting.

Firstly the kit I bought is a Voilamart front hub motor (geared, not the non UK legal and switchable 250w/1000w DD hub motors on the bay). The kit also came with a homemade 36v battery and charger. Got the whole kit inc battery for just under £150. It has no display or throttle (throttle was cut off by the previous owner), so is currently full power off the pedal assist. I have ordered a twist throttle to hopefully allow me to have more control.

The mountain bike I put it on is a cheap Apollo Slammer, probably worth less than £40. I have ordered some trigger shifters to replace the revoshifters that are on it.

This whole project has therefore cost me just over £200 (bargain cheap ebike!).

The interesting bit so far is the full power assist is just too much when trying to manoeuvre slowly. But the bike also seems to pull harder uphill than my 250w Bafang G06 36v on pull power? Having said that I plan to take both bikes out today to do a proper comparison of the amount of assist each motor is giving me uphill, as I am surprised how well the Voilamart motor assists going uphill, despite the fact I believe it only has 15NM?

I'll give an update and get some pics up later today.
 
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PC2017

Esteemed Pedelecer
Sep 19, 2017
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Although it was just a front hub motor kit.
Less of the "although" lol

You'll do well with a front hub, they are as good if not better then rear IMO, and great for weight distribution with rear mounted batteries and/or heavy persons riding. Like you mention, easy to install. I have seen some people have trouble with rear hubs esp with spokes snapping, I myself had a bad experience with rear however it was cheap and turns out nasty so I'll stick with my black front hub although being a tad slow on 36v but switch it up to 48v and it's a whole other beast... A throttle most likely will give you some speed controller but don't expect much without a display. The lower the RPM the better it is for hill climbing.
 

Nealh

Esteemed Pedelecer
Aug 7, 2014
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Those Voilamart kits usually have speed controllers so the power/current can't be regulated, it will give max current all the time in any assist.
The Bafang will likely use a current control controller so will only have max power/current in the top assist level, lower assist levels will give lower current so the power will feel less but hugely feel better for bike control.
 
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MikeFB

Pedelecer
Jun 25, 2020
69
36
Cheers guys.

Well just tested both bikes side by side on the same circuit. I set the Bafang G06 to level 6 And.......dare I say it, but the Voilamart definitely pulled harder on the straight and up the hill.

I could feel the difference and speed showed 3 mph more with the kit uphill on one of the hills I tackled regularly? (7 mph vs 10 mph). Could there be something wrong with my Bafang motor? The Vaoilmart has a 15a controller and the Bafang has a 17a controller. The only variable I don't know about is the battery. Previous owner said it has 40 18360 batteries and mentioned to me 10sp if I remember correctly.

Certainly the Voilamart is much noisier, while the Bafang is hardly audible. Could it be the weight and wheels/tyres of the Fat Boy?

Don't get me wrong I still very much like my FB, but was surprised.
IMG_20200802_102924483.jpgIMG_20200802_102928712.jpgIMG_20200802_102934615.jpgIMG_20200802_102942663.jpg
 

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MikeFB

Pedelecer
Jun 25, 2020
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Oh one other thing I noticed is that on the battery level meter on the voilamart kit, it shows as full, but when the motor cuts in it drops to empty (red). Previous owner said battery was at 20%, so I put it on charge, but only for 2-3 hours. However the charger was showing green before I switched it off.
 
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MikeFB

Pedelecer
Jun 25, 2020
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Those Voilamart kits usually have speed controllers so the power/current can't be regulated, it will give max current all the time in any assist.
The Bafang will likely use a current control controller so will only have max power/current in the top assist level, lower assist levels will give lower current so the power will feel less but hugely feel better for bike control.
Wasn't aware of the speed controller bit, so will have to see how it goes when the twist throttle arrives. I guess it just takes getting used to.

This was just a cheap project for my first ebike kit, so not too fused anyway. Will probably sell both bikes next year and put together a better bike (for me and my needs) anyway as I'm learning what I like and want as I go along.
 
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Nealh

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Aug 7, 2014
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The two bikes offer an unfair comparison, one has to use the same motor/controller/battery and bike to make an ideal comparison.

The Voilamart and Bafang most likely have differing motor winding speeds.
The fat bike will be slower as it is a heavier bike to ride and has more rolling resistance.
Different size tyres use more energy/watts to ride then other types so all have varying rolling resistances, see the link below.
 
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MikeFB

Pedelecer
Jun 25, 2020
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The two bikes offer an unfair comparison, one has to use the same motor/controller/battery and bike to make an ideal comparison.

The Voilamart and Bafang most likely have differing motor winding speeds.
The fat bike will be slower as it is a heavier bike to ride and has more rolling resistance.
Different size tyres use more energy/watts to ride then other types so all have varying rolling resistances, see the link below.
That's a far comment and I pretty much guessed as much to be honest, but was kind of hoping that 50nm vs 15nm would be noticeable uphill, just the other way around? Still learning about winding speeds etc as well.
 
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Nealh

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Aug 7, 2014
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It may well be that the small Voilamart geared hubs are better value then we give them credit for ?
Try a steeper hill to find it's limit or until the nylon gears strip.
The difference is not about speed but how both deliver the torque as the inclines get steeper, as they become steeper the Bafang should raise it's head.
 
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MikeFB

Pedelecer
Jun 25, 2020
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Oh it's a steep hill, steep enough that I cannot cycle up it in a granny gear seated, have to stand up and push really hard and with the same bike that I just converted have to get off halfway up it before I did the conversion. In fact I don't even like walking up it.wrege.png
 
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Nealh

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Yep that looks steep.
 
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MikeFB

Pedelecer
Jun 25, 2020
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Yep that looks steep.
Unfortunately there's quite a few hills in just about every direction I can go where I am and most are very steep, hence why I may have to reconsider the type of bike I will ultimately end up with. Initially I was going to get a fat bike with 4+" tyres, but not now. Plus I need to keep the bike legal to be honest, so has to be 250w. Will def go for 48v though next time, but don't like the idea of crank drive enough to go that route.
 
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wheeliepete

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Feb 28, 2016
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It has no display or throttle (throttle was cut off by the previous owner), so is currently full power off the pedal assist. I have ordered a twist throttle to hopefully allow me to have more control.
You may find fitting a cut off switch if your controller has the connection for one on the rear brake will help with control when you need it, esp. at low speed.
 

MikeFB

Pedelecer
Jun 25, 2020
69
36
You may find fitting a cut off switch if your controller has the connection for one on the rear brake will help with control when you need it, esp. at low speed.
Oh sorry forgot to mention it did come with the cut off brake levers, which work fine. I think it will take some getting use to. I've learnt today that there is a 3-4 crank rotation delay as well before the motor kicks in and that's with a 12 magnet sensor, so maybe I might see if this can help out in some way with slow manoeuver situations?.

This motor does seem to be a bit more stout than I was expecting, it does pull you forward very noticeably when it kicks in, but the motor cut off does also seem to stay within legal limits thankfully.