RC !

March 2009

In March of 2009 I put my name down for a Dual Stage reduction drive unit from " Recumpence " .

I had no real plan other than " Get the parts, and figure it out ! "

On April 7 - 2009

Deceptively small, and a tad heavier than i expected.. 6.5 lbs !

Top job on the finish, i absolutely love it ! the black anodize looks great and the silver motor gives it just enough bling !

Quote Matt, Aka : Recumpence

"-- The drive you see was designed by me, but never prototyped. I took "Napkin" sketches to Dave in the shop downstairs (my landlord) who programmed it directly into his HAAS CNC. Then the parts were all cut without any prototyping or clearance checking, or testing for that matter. Heck, this is the first two stage drive I ever assembled

--Torque increases as reduction increases. So, the second stage sees roughly 3 times the torque of the first stage. A second stage belt would skip (I tried it on my recumbent). Also, a belt is smoother and quieter than a chain especially at high RPM. So, a belt is best for the primary reduction.

The [ball bearing] idler is mounted to a moveable adjuster plate that wraps around the jackshaft bearing tube. That was needed to achieve a decent chain wrap as well as being able to adjust out any chain stretch.

--Dual stage $380 (anodizing is extra). The motor shown in the pics is currently listed at $400

Matt "

Picture above, I was unsure at this point what bicycle to bolt the drive onto, the Chaos was considered, so was the chopper, or the BMX..

May 6 - 2009

I got my custom cut spokes !! I had to google ERD " Effective Rim Diameter " and how to measure it.. there are online tools available that guide you thru the process, after tripple checking I ordered the required lenght from ebikes.ca !!

The NuVinci hub is getting laced tomorrow night !

Incredible how well this thing came together.. it's almost a sin for it to be that easy to lace up a hub.. this is my 1st non-hub-motor wheel and working with 13 double butted spokes is AWSOME !!!!...

May 7, 2009

the Nuvinci is in a 20" rim. will use 20 x 2" hookworm tires at 50psi ( rated for up to 110psi ! but that makes for a harsh ride )

The Tidal Force frame was originally for 26", but i'm going 20" front and back.

The front end is going to be suspended, likely double crown forks with hydraulic disk brakes.

I have an eZee bike for the wet weather, this thing is submersible, my Chopper for weekend fun and friends, my Norco Chaos full suspension with 72v 20ah for long range comfort, BMX is now getting a 400w Kol motor modded with a 72v clyte controller, and a Trek with a E-Bikekit.com rear hub . so i'm not short on bikes ! lol..

This one, for now, is a proof of concept, i need to sort out the controller, throttle, gearing, mounts, test the RC motor's capabilities and once all that pans out.. will move all the gear to a full suspension frame ! I have all the parts already for this build on hand, so no need to go buy a full suspension frame for testing.. and i can't tear my Norco down as it's my commuter ( i don't own a car !! )

May 29 - 2009

RC Controller arrived !

This thing is tiny compared to the run of the mill ebike controllers.. but alot more expensive.....

Still a few odds and ends to sort out but it's certainly comming together !!!

Got the NuVinci laced, Fechter's throttle box is here, HV controller, 2 Stage drive..

And most importantly.. i'm pretty much done everyone else's ebike projects so i'm free to work on my own


June 2 , 2009

Mounted the rear tire on the NuVinci, and placed an order for some ENO freewheels, I'm told regular freewheels won't last with the power this setup can push so top of the line units are required.

July 25 - 2009

I'm itching to get this bike done and on the road !!!....

Today i picked up all the parts to build up the front end, RST Launch fork, 24" sun rim Single Trac rim, Avid BB5 disk brake and lever,Ritchey 1 1/8" headset, Titec WellBent bars.. Stem.. freeride tube, 2.3" kenda tire.. jagwire cable housings for the NuVinci hub..

Been at this most of the day, taking my time and doing it right..

Originally i wanted to go with 20" wheels front and back but the pedals would be hitting the ground too easily.. going with 24" front gives me just enough lift. I wanted a compact bike, my bikes come in the house most of the time and the bigger they are the more hassle they are to park in the living room !

Can't wait to give it a go, I"m taking the IPS cranks to my local bike shop this week to fit it with a 2nd sproket, so i can run a chain to the cranks, and a 2nd chain to the rear wheel.

Driving the Nuvinci directly from the RC drive would be difficult as the motor foot would not end up centered on the frame ( or i'd need a longer shaft for the freewheel side ) .. so driving the front cranks is the plan at the moment !

With front derailleur removed !!! . lookie here !

Top view, looks like i can run a chain to the bigger front chainring, and the smaller chainring on the cranks to the rear motor..

Aug 4 - 2009

Went to the local bike shop this past saturday.. ( They finally quit asking 1000 questinos why i want what i ask for ! lol )

So i now have a stock 39t on the IPS cranks, i picked up a 48t chainring that can be bolted to the inside or the outside depending on what chain goes where.. if i put the 48t on the inside it comes.. REALLY close to the frame, may be forced to run the 48t on the outside and this puts it out of line with the rear wheel, meaning 39t to the Nuvinci and 48t to the motor.

I have 16t, 18t, and 22t ENO freewheels in the mail, should arrive next week most likely. Along with some half link KHE 1/8 chain.

I need to figure out what to run on the 2nd stage of the drive ( 16,18 or 22 ), to the front cranks (39 or 48 ) , then from the cranks to the Nuvinci Hub that is in a 20" rim.

Motor is a 6 turn 3210 reduced 9:1 and will be run at 48v ( 15 cell PSI for now until winter, then over winter switch to LiPo ! )

Do i want to gear it high, or gear it low ? that is the question.


Aug 12 - 2009

I just got back from the post office.. Got my ENO freewheels and removal tool, half link chains, and some new Pedals !! ( nice and red, matches frame ! )

Big 8" disk brake !

22t ENO freewheel !

Took the 39t chainring from the outer side of the cranks and put it on the inside, the 48t goes on the outside..

16t RC drive to 48t chainring
39t ring to the rear wheel 22t

I got spacers from the bike shop but the bolts are not long enough to distance the 2 chainrings enough so that the 2 chains don't hit each other.. I found big fat bolts that will work, jut have to cut them to right lenght.

If i was mounting the unit to drive the rear hub with 2 rear wheel sprokets.. i could mount it this way, the foot would be in a perfect position to use the V-brake studs and rear rack nutserts on the top rear a-arm of the frame, but this would not work to reach the front cranks..

I put tape on the frame to protect the paint as i keep trying to find just the right spot for this thing.. Right now, i think i'm going to have to mount it under the downtube, behind the front tire, the more i think about this thing spinning 12,000rpm near my crotch, the less apealing the front of the back tire seems..i may stuff this space with LiPo instead !

Ok.. so it took 4 hands and a bible worth of bad words to get the crappy freewheel off the NuVinci !! ( word to anyone out there who gets a N.V. don't put a freewheel on your hub that you plan to remove unless you have the right tool !!! ) but it's out.

Now time to figure out what threads on where..

I am no mathematician or physicist, so bear with me if this is all screwed up.. here goes if you feel brave enough to read thru it..

I have the choice of 2 front chainrings:

3 x ENO freewheels :
- 20 rear wheel = 50cm( Diameter ) x 3.14 = 157cm
- 50 km = 50,000m
- (50,000 meters) divided by (157 centimeters) = 31 847.1338 ( as per google ! )
- 31,847 rotations in 60 minutes = 530.78 Rpm to get me 50 km/h ( 30 mph )
Now this is the part i start to have problems with..
- 3210 Astroflight 6 turn motor at 48v i think gives aprox 10,000 rpm and lets assume 8000rpm at cruising speed.. ( + or - i'm not sure )

- On Astroflight site : 275 rpm/v with LFP 15 cells 45v x 275 = 12,375pm

- 2 stage Matt-Box reduction 9:1

- 8000rpm / 9 = 888 rpm
- 10,000rpm / 9 = 1111 rpm

Geared Low:
16t on motor and 48t on cranks = 16:48 = 1:3
39t on cranks and 22t on rear wheel = 39:22 = 1:0.5
888rpm / 3 = 296rpm / 0.5 = 592
10,000rpm / 3 = 333rpm / 0.5 = 666

Geared High:
22t on motor and 39t on cranks = 22:39 = 1:1.77
48t on cranks and 16t on rear wheel = 48:16 = 1:0.3
888pm / 1.77 = 501rpm / 0.3 = 1670
10,000rpm / 1.77 = 5650 rpm / 0.3 = 18,833 ?? that can't be right ?

Now the NV has a ratio of 350%

ok. it's way late and going to bed.. will check this again in the morning and realize how horribly off track i am.. lol.


Aug 17 - 2009

So i got the left pedal and crank installed, seat on, front caliper adjusted and installed, brake levers on, and then time to install the NuVinci !

I resisted the urge to just dive in and figure it out, went online and googled it, read the fallbrook forum, learned about the drive etc.. watched the installation videos :


I carefully measured and cut the JagWire cable housings to lenght, Dremel cutting disks works great for this btw .. and then went over the installation .pdf file..and watched the video a few more times over.. made sure i got the whole thing down 100% and followed along pausing the video after each step.

Inch worm flat on display, adjustment stud on the axle all the way in clockwise, cable A snugged on the 1st cam/tumbler thingy, at 12 oclock position, i have a torque wrench but nothing to properly torque these tiny 2.5mm hex set screws so i cranked it by hand to a comfortable level, and one more twist of the wrist for good luck ....and heard this " crunch " sound that made my skin crawl for a moment... .... 2 possible things.. i either cracked the head off the screw, or the cable strands settled and made this sound.. i prayed for scenario 2 and kept on going..

Cable B on 2nd cam requried 230mm of cable, put all that together, bolted and sticker installed... ready for a test .. uh oh.. all jammed up, no rotation.. grrr.. i hate it when this happens..

Took the whole damn thing apart for a closer look and to figure out why it won't go....

Turns out, the only thing i omitted, was to take apart the hand grip and make sure the cables were routed correctly, this part of the kit was pre wired and i assumed it was right.. maybe it was.. but it's the only thing i can determine to be my problem.. With the inch worm flat, cable A should be coiled up inside the hand grip, and feed the cam at the hub end, when twisting the grip making the orange hill go up.

Going to bike shop tomorrow night to get 2 new cables and try again since i now have one cable too short, and the 2nd cable bound up in the grip and the strands are all messed up in a bulge now..

The set screw on cable A was not stripped or broken, and did not slip ( confirmed by the squish point on the cable and the end cut flush with the cam still in position )

l will get this damn thing to work !!! one way or another..

Aug 18 - 2009

Success !!!!!!

Installed 2 brand new cables, as per the video, fed back into the cams, tested and we have joy !!!!!

Next step is to cut and grind the nuts and bolts for the double front chainrings so i can run a chain and pedal around the yard some to test chainline and mount options to clear the cranks..

Was at Home Depot tonight and found a nice thick piece of angle aluminum, along with some HPDE 3/4" plastic i have on hand i will somehow manage to make a strong mount...

This NuVinci is bitchin !!!!... spinning the hub by hand via the freewheel and going thru the motion of gear range.. i love it !! * croses fingers this thing will last at the power i plan to use..

Aug 19 - 2009

Bolts are too long and need cutting down to size, always spin on an axle nut first so that after cutting the bolt you can chase the threads with the nut already on there, much easier, specially if you get a bad cut..

Good o'l angle grinder ! ( wishing i had a band saw, but hey, do what you can with what you got

Playing with macro mode on my new camera ( picked up a Fujifilm F200-EXR a few days ago )

Close only works at the game of Horse Shoes huh... this is a bit too close

2 things from this, one good, one bad, good part is that the larger outer chainring now lines up with the rear ENO once the cranks are bolted on and pulled onto the square BB axle, leaving me the inside chainring for the motor !!!

Bad part is that i have to decide on a method of making this clear the frame, options include angle grinder to the outer edge of the nylock nuts, or replace nylocks with regualr nuts ground down part way .. either way mosquito's were out in full force and i had to abandon for the night so more tomorrow..

Kitchen floor !! thank god i'm single.. .. i'm about at that stage where i drop everything and clean for 3 days, the house has become a .. well.. not sure what word to use here.. .. dis-orderly

Aug 20 - 2009

Ok.. some good news !!!! IT"S ALIVE !!!!!!

I took the advice of flipping the bolts around and it clears, and " just ".. but it fits ! I was avoiding the nylocks on the outside for asthetic reasons but i managed to grind and file them good enough to pass the YQC.

Put on the half link chain, thank god i ordered 2 of them, one was not long enough, and what's left of the 2nd chain will work but none to waste !..

So, i was going to pull a Methods and go for a test ride without brakes, but damit.. i just got some new nike's and don't want to burn them so soon.. took 2 minutes to cable up the front brake..

Test ride report : .. FREAKIN AWSOME !!! i love this NuVinci thing ! even with the 20" rear wheel, big ENO and 48t chainring, high range is right around 20mph at pedaling speeds ! and low is Really LOWWWW... i was crawling thru thick grass effortlessly.. you can shift up to go faster under load but you can't shift down while pedaling hard, the nuvinci locks up, just pause pedaling for a second and twist then back on the pedals. This actually works out good for me as i can gun the throttle and once up to speed ( i suspect a very few short seconds ) keep it pinned and roll up the gear ratio with the left hand..

Next step, motor mount !

Aug 21 - 2009

I wanted to complete the bike aspect before going too deep into the motor mounting, had to make sure the thing would work as a bicycle before becoming an ebike !lol..

For the rest of the season, the battery pack will be PSI cells, over winter i plan to build up a LiPo pack...

Motor and controller are this weekends projects, i took the belt pulley off the motor shaft to hunt down a set screw i need, and this makes bench testing the motor and controller alot easier ( less spinning meat grinder type action going on when the drive is loose on the bench.. ) I read the HV manual, and i need to hook it up to the CC software, following gary and D's settings i expect this to be fairly easy. if it's all go then i should be golden.

Pedals are way close to the ground, i already scrapped up one pedal pretty good.. i will need shorter cranks.. ( problematic on the IPS cranks, but i'll figure it out in due time ) ..

2nd issue is alot of slop in the NuVinci freewheel collar, it really clacks hard if you let the chain go loose and hit the pedals hard again, going to have to deal with that somehow.. ( emailing fallbrook now )..


Aug 23 - 2009

The 20" rear wheel was the original plan for multiple reasons, lowers the gearing, lowers the seat height and makes the bike shorter ( so i can fit it in the elevator at work ! ) and for the space i get in front of the wheel by not using a 26".. I did however, get a 24" rim with 32 holes just in case ( as well as a 26" ) so it's always an option.. lol..

Nothing about this project is written in stone, it's one step at a time and the plan keeps changing as the situation requires. This is my 1st RC buid ( of many more in the future i'm sure ) .. and a learning process.. now that i have the chain mounted to thear wheel, using the outside chainring, i think i can mount the motor in front of the rear tire again ( this was impossible if i had to drive the outside chainring as the inner would have been in the way .. )

I finally made the time today to wire this baby up !

Soldered the HV onto the motor leads, i will do a better connection later..

Using the info on ebikes.ca :
http://www.ebikes.ca/store/diagrams/Rec ... nector.gif

And Fechter's thread in the technical archive:

Matched up the colors and soldered on the provided connector for the throttle box ! ( Thanks Richard !! excellent work on that unit ! )

Wired it all up, Installed 45amp andersons on both sides of the throttle box , grabbed an 8 cell ( 24v ) pack, crossed my fingers and prayed to the smoke genie gods requesting that they stay far away..

Beep, beep, beep, .. blink blink.. no smoke. good.. held on to the motor ( with belt removed ) not knowing what to expect as far as startup torque ( hard lesson learned early on in my ebike history testing a hub motor with axle not secured.. damn that sucked, trying to catch a flying saucer running actross the kitchen floor.... ) slowly cracked the throttle and brrrrrrrrrrr..... IT"S ALIVE !!!!!!!!

Aug 24 - 2009

I downloaded the software direct from the castle site, updated in august aparently, and one thing i found is running the motor on the bench, no load, 1 amp full throttle, all good and cool... if i run very low rpm like 1/4 throttle for 30 seconds or so the motor temps rise quickly, controller stays cool.. at 24v.

I ordered 200$ worth of cable form powerwerx last week, some high strand 10g etc to wire things up properly,

Matt is prepping my freewheel parts to run crank side and should be on the way shortly, i may spin on the southpaw freewheel i have on hand for the time being if i get this all mounted and ready to test before my parcel arrives lol.. ( or get to work on my chopper project that has stalled lately

Aug 27 - 2009

Some small progress, but progress none the less, darn life duties keep getting in the way and all that.. grrr.. if only i could dedicate a full day to the project i'd be done.. but unfortunately i do as much as possible with the time i can allow !

A few days ago i went to the garage to determine the distance requried between the motor drive freewheel and foot portion and realized this problem

Got the puller out, off come the chainrings..

Removed one of the spacers between the chainrings, and Daaaaaaaam it's close !!! and it works ! I've got about 1/16th between the chains !

Using pieces of 3/4" nylon board and aluminum angle, i have a mounting bracket in mind that should work just fine.. The whole bracket will slide up on the frame to tighten the chain and cover a big surface area of the frame to prevent crushing the frame or slipping once tight.. Likely a number of things i'm overlooking and will find out the hard way, but this is part of the puzzle !

I tried every conceivable method to try and mount this thing in front of the rear tire, just not happening with this frame.. i was even going to give up the cranks and go for footpegs with direct chain drive to rear wheel but would have had to mount the motor on top of the rear wheel , no good for weight distribution.. below the downtube is the only way on this frame.

Sep 6 - 2009

Ok, there will be progress today !! Finally !

I got my parts from Matt !! ( THANK YOU !! ) so i can drive the ENO on the right side vs left side . I have changed my mind regarding how this bike will come together a dozen times, as i've pointed out early on this is not written in stone and anything is up for changing if requried ! lol..

Threads sink fast in here. wow.. had to go looking on page 2 !!

Fired up the Keurig coffee machine, on cup no.2, about to make breakfast and it's a perfect sunday morning outside.. i think i should turn off my phone.....


Some pictures to explain the drive side freewheel adapter for anyone else doing this

The 18t ENO has a blue seal on the back side..

Thread the set screws in, and insert stub end 1st..

carefully thread in..

Voila !

Set screws show up on the other side..

line up set screws with flats on shaft.. and crank them down !

I spent most of the day in the garage, Sandy loved it !

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