ADVrider

Go Back   ADVrider > Bikes > Thumpers
User Name
Password
Register Inmates Photos Site Rules Search Today's Posts Mark Forums Read

Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
Old 04-02-2013, 07:50 PM   #91
Wind_Rider OP
Gnarly Adventurer
 
Wind_Rider's Avatar
 
Joined: Mar 2006
Location: Idaho
Oddometer: 305
Relocated Power Plug

The stock location for the charge cord to connect to the 2012 Zeros is in the front of the bike, right where a proper skid plate would be.

Over on the Electric Motorcycle Forum I saw a post of adding a Power Plug permanently to the bike and running it out up higher, under where a "normal" motorcycle's gas tank would be.

I installed that power cord and this makes plugging in much nicer and a lot less fuss as long as there is an extension cord handy at the charge locations. I leave an extension cord out at work and at home where I charge so now it just takes 2 seconds of my time to recharge. Here is a pic of the new charge plug installed on the bike:


Wind_Rider screwed with this post 04-03-2013 at 08:32 AM Reason: corrected typo
Wind_Rider is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-02-2013, 07:53 PM   #92
Wind_Rider OP
Gnarly Adventurer
 
Wind_Rider's Avatar
 
Joined: Mar 2006
Location: Idaho
Oddometer: 305
Charging at Work

Lucky for me, I work at a company that is friendly to EVs.

Here is a picture of the Zero getting fueled up at work. I even found a spot to park in the shade.



We have a 25KW solar roof on the building here which you can see a little piece of in the background of the picture.
Wind_Rider is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-02-2013, 08:36 PM   #93
Wind_Rider OP
Gnarly Adventurer
 
Wind_Rider's Avatar
 
Joined: Mar 2006
Location: Idaho
Oddometer: 305
The Energy Density Problem for PEVs

Plug in Electric Vehicles like the Zero motorcycle face a really big challenge when compared to traditional Internal Combustion Engined vehicles. That problem boils down to the incredible energy density that gasoline has.

One Gallon of Gasoline, in a mere 6 lbs and about 230 cubic inches of volume, contains the equivalent of about 36KWh of electrical energy.

Compare that to the battery box on my Zero DS. It contains about 8-9KWh of electrical energy, it is most of the volume of the motorcycle, and it weighs about 135 lbs or 15lbs/KWh of storage.

The entire battery box on my Zero DS represents the equivalent energy of about 1/4 gallon (or one liter) of gasoline.

Given those harsh numbers the only way that the Zero can be practical at all is if it is incredibly efficient with the energy that it has available and Zero engineers have worked hard to make the most out of the energy that is in those batteries to translate that into forward motion with the utmost efficiency. The equivalent MPG rating for the Zero DS is 480MPGe City and 267MPGe Highway to give you an idea of efficiency of the Zero Design verses ICE.

Today I rode 58 miles from the office to home with a work related errand "on the way" and arrived with 2 bars of energy left on the meter. The route was mixed with in town, a little 70 MPH freeway, and the rest was 2 lane highway, up a big hill and into a headwind.

I don't know any ICE bike that could have made the same route on a paltry liter of gas... and the Zero still had some to spare.

Wind_Rider is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-02-2013, 09:02 PM   #94
a1fa
Riding Nomad™
 
a1fa's Avatar
 
Joined: Nov 2006
Location: Arkansas
Oddometer: 13,662
Very nice! I just cant wait to prices go down... sub $5k, and I would be in the market for one.
__________________
Learn to ride. Ride to learn.
a1fa is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 04-02-2013, 09:49 PM   #95
dman
Studly Adventurer
 
Joined: Sep 2004
Location: Santa Cruz, CA
Oddometer: 576
I'm really enjoying this thread. Thanks, Wind_Rider and the others who have contributed. As Wind_Rider eloquently wrote in a recent post, there are a lot of opinions and perspectives on EV's.

Last night I attended a presentation at Stanford University by Carlos Ghosn, CEO of Renault-Nissan, which has made a major commitment to EV with the Leaf and presumably, follow-ons. I don't know all the facts, and I suspect there's a lot of mis-information out there as well, regarding environmental impact of the materials and manufacturing of an EV with its batteries, vs an ICE car. But Ghosn made a pretty compelling pitch for the environmental, economic and quality of life benefits of powering the finished vehicle, from electricity that is generated and distributed by a local utility, versus fuel which is often imported or refined from imported oil, and then transported in bulk to distributed gas stations. Many countries import a huge amount of oil, which results in huge trade deficits .... with electricity, that potentially goes away. And, it's more likely and certainly more feasible for the electricity to be generated with renewable and/or clean sources like hydro, solar, wind or natural gas.

So he believes that it's in many countries' best interests to facilitate (you could call it subsidize) an electric vehicle charging infrastructure to kickstart greater adoption, just as countries did 100 years ago and still do to facilitate fuel production and distribution. Just remember, that tanker delivering fuel used public highways, and may cause more ongoing public expense than a high voltage power distribution network delivering the same amount of energy ....

-dman
dman is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-03-2013, 05:17 PM   #96
Wind_Rider OP
Gnarly Adventurer
 
Wind_Rider's Avatar
 
Joined: Mar 2006
Location: Idaho
Oddometer: 305
Thanks for adding to the discussion dman.

I also think that as a nation we should focus our energy future on more local solutions adding renewables to the mix where it makes sense from an economic and supply perspective.

Public fast charging stations for vehicles are really interesting but also really challenging from a power supply side. Cars (and motorcycles) will be pulling huge amounts of energy from the grid during peak load times. It is a high current load at the wrong time of day.

Commuting by motorcycle, on the other hand, makes a lot of sense. In my case half of my commuting power comes from Idaho Power from 9 PM to 6 AM when they have excess capacity. The other half comes during peak hours, but with the onboard charger sipping at the grid with a max of 1KW draw, this is like powering up a few computers at work. And the load is distributed over a long period of time so it is easier for the grid to supply it.

If a large portion of the population would commute by electric motorcycle it would make a huge difference in gas consumption very quickly and gas prices would fall.

Just one more reason why motorcycles are better than cars.....

Wind_Rider screwed with this post 04-03-2013 at 05:21 PM Reason: typo corrections
Wind_Rider is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-03-2013, 07:47 PM   #97
edmoto
Adventurer
 
edmoto's Avatar
 
Joined: Sep 2002
Location: Wyoming
Oddometer: 25
As a fellow Rocky Mountain rider:

How much do you think cold weather decreases the energy of the battery? For example, 20'F means range decreased 10%? 20% versus 60'F weather? Or if the temperature is 0'F, energy is decreased more? Is the power reduction (meaning range capability) a linear decrease? As in every 5'F is 5% decrease, etc? Or does a certain colder temperature make the power decline precipitously?

What if you forgot to, or couldn't for whatever reason, plug in your bike to recharge overnight or at work. How fast does the battery discharge from just sitting still, power off? Meaning, you had it topped off, unplugged for 4 weeks. Will it still be at 100% a month later?

Does the battery behave similar to the (much debated) LiPo batteries where if you recharge at say 40% repeatedly, you decrease the life of the battery versus letting it drain down to 5% and then recharge to 100%?

Do you feel the Zero can handle water safely? As in, you wipe out in a snow drift, get moving again and the heat from the motor melts snow into water in places it normally never gets wet (think of a snowmobile getting packed with snow from boondocking)? Or you go to cross a stream and your tires deflect off a submerged rock and over you go... dropping the bike (power on) into the water for a swim?

Does Zero let you reprogram the controller just like the aftermarket lets ICE owners do with FI fueling maps? Like you could make the power hit harder at beginning throttle openings, and then get softer at cruising speeds?

You say you might consider an ICE after owning the Zero. What are your feelings on the resale of the bike? Do you think you could sell it again where you live (which might be ok with a local Zero dealer). But what if you lived in BFE Wyoming for example? Are you basically faced with issues selling it second hand unless you transport it to a major city or California, where these bikes are more popular/common place?

Thanks for any input.
__________________
Disclaimer: I reserve the right to be wrong, claim I never knew you, and have no knowledge of what I'm talking about. Have a nice day
edmoto is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-03-2013, 08:14 PM   #98
edmoto
Adventurer
 
edmoto's Avatar
 
Joined: Sep 2002
Location: Wyoming
Oddometer: 25
Oh, and also...

Do you think you'd enjoy the bike more with a 6 speed tranny like the Brammo's have? Or are you developing a fondness for one ratio gearing?
__________________
Disclaimer: I reserve the right to be wrong, claim I never knew you, and have no knowledge of what I'm talking about. Have a nice day
edmoto is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-03-2013, 09:31 PM   #99
Wind_Rider OP
Gnarly Adventurer
 
Wind_Rider's Avatar
 
Joined: Mar 2006
Location: Idaho
Oddometer: 305
Quote:
Originally Posted by edmoto View Post
As a fellow Rocky Mountain rider:

How much do you think cold weather decreases the energy of the battery? For example, 20'F means range decreased 10%? 20% versus 60'F weather? Or if the temperature is 0'F, energy is decreased more? Is the power reduction (meaning range capability) a linear decrease? As in every 5'F is 5% decrease, etc? Or does a certain colder temperature make the power decline precipitously?

I have not yet ridden the Zero in real warm weather. Batteries do lose efficiency in the cold. I think I recall reading somewhere that it is about 10 - 15% range loss at the coldest end of the spectrum which is 20 degrees F. Below 20 degrees F the Zero will not run or recharge to protect the battery bank.

What if you forgot to, or couldn't for whatever reason, plug in your bike to recharge overnight or at work. How fast does the battery discharge from just sitting still, power off? Meaning, you had it topped off, unplugged for 4 weeks. Will it still be at 100% a month later?

The battery box will slowly lose charge over time like all batteries. It takes about 5 W of power to be plugged in all time and keep all of the batteries in the pack topped up and balanced. Inside the ZF9 battery box there are over 100 battery cells. The BMS (Battery Management System) computer makes sure that each of the cells is charging and running correctly. It is quite complex.

Since the idle power requirement is so low, I just plug it into power all the time that I am not riding it to let the BMS do it's job. The manual says that the BMS can take up to 72 hours to balance all of the cells in the battery pack.

Does the battery behave similar to the (much debated) LiPo batteries where if you recharge at say 40% repeatedly, you decrease the life of the battery versus letting it drain down to 5% and then recharge to 100%?

No. The battery chemistry and BMS were engineered to allow the cells to have the longest life and there is no requirement for periodic draw downs to cycle the batteries. Ride it however you want to and keep it plugged in to let the BMS manage the battery packs. Zero rates the ZF9 battery pack to last over 300,000 miles and still deliver 80% of the rated capacity. That should do it for me.

Do you feel the Zero can handle water safely? As in, you wipe out in a snow drift, get moving again and the heat from the motor melts snow into water in places it normally never gets wet (think of a snowmobile getting packed with snow from boondocking)? Or you go to cross a stream and your tires deflect off a submerged rock and over you go... dropping the bike (power on) into the water for a swim?

I am curious about that. I have run the bike already in snowmelt and pretty much covered it in snow, ice, water. It is a brushless design but not sealed. So far so good. There is very little heat generated from the motor. Riding it in the cold, I got off to warm my hands near the exhaust like on my ICE bikes. Uh, no exhaust, no headers, no heat anywhere! The lack of engine heat is going to nice in the summer.

Does Zero let you reprogram the controller just like the aftermarket lets ICE owners do with FI fueling maps? Like you could make the power hit harder at beginning throttle openings, and then get softer at cruising speeds?

On the 2013 Zeros motor parameters and regeneration can be tuned using a Smartphone app. Very slick. The phone connects to the bike using Bluetooth and can display all kinds of interesting technical data in real time as well. My DS is a 2012 model and does not have this technology so I only have the Sport or Eco mode toggle switch.

You say you might consider an ICE after owning the Zero. What are your feelings on the resale of the bike? Do you think you could sell it again where you live (which might be ok with a local Zero dealer). But what if you lived in BFE Wyoming for example? Are you basically faced with issues selling it second hand unless you transport it to a major city or California, where these bikes are more popular/common place?

There is a risk in being an early adopter. I bought this bike with a lot of year end incentives and Zero's cash For Carbon trade in program. There is also a Federal tax rebate for EVs added to that. In my case I am happy with what I paid for what I got regardless of resale.

Value is subjective. Personally, I consider a new 2103 Zero DS to be a better bargain than a new HD chromocruiser. The Zero has a lower price, but most riders seem to see more value in the hog.

If I had the cash I would buy a 2013.

The more I ride this bike the more I like it. It is really freeing to NEVER buy gas. I like riding unique bikes and I am pretty sure that I will not encounter another Zero DS like mine out on the road somewhere. I intend to ride the wheels off this thing and see how long it will run.


Thanks for any input.
.
Wind_Rider is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-03-2013, 09:44 PM   #100
Wind_Rider OP
Gnarly Adventurer
 
Wind_Rider's Avatar
 
Joined: Mar 2006
Location: Idaho
Oddometer: 305
Quote:
Originally Posted by edmoto View Post
Oh, and also...

Do you think you'd enjoy the bike more with a 6 speed tranny like the Brammo's have? Or are you developing a fondness for one ratio gearing?
I like Zeros approach to the electric motorcycle better than the Brammo approach personally. Zero is simpler and more efficient. The lack of transmission fits that philosophy. Zero has an air cooled motor, Brammo is liquid cooled.

I have always liked shifting gears. My Toyota Pickup has a 6 speed stick and I would not even test drive the auto version even though the salesman tried really hard to convince me that an auto tranny was better in every way. I am famous amongst my friends for my proclamation that every vehicle should have a 6 speed transmission.

However, I think the Zero direct drive belt final drive is perfect for an electric motorcycle and I would not want a 6 speed tranny in my Zero. 6 speeds is really silly for the powerband of an electric motor in my opinion. Shifting gears on an ebike would be completely different as well. You could just pick a gear and ride off. No need to ever slip the clutch either.

It is odd for me to say but I like no gears and just one ratio from the motor to the rear wheel on the Zero.
Wind_Rider is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-03-2013, 09:55 PM   #101
joexr
Beastly Adventurer
 
Joined: Jan 2011
Location: S.E.
Oddometer: 3,773
Simpler , yes , more efficient , no. Oh , and by the way. ITS NOT A THUMPER!
joexr is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-04-2013, 07:13 AM   #102
edmoto
Adventurer
 
edmoto's Avatar
 
Joined: Sep 2002
Location: Wyoming
Oddometer: 25
Good info, Wind Rider. I'm curious about EV, and find I need to educate myself about how the batteries work in the conditions I live in. Which is no different than learning about gasoline... E10 degrades if not stabil'd, bigger tank = more range, fiddling with a choke on cold mornings, and so on. Part of the learning curve.

I'm sure you also meant to put this in the EV forum. Oh wait, there isn't one! I suppose, if I was to read back to your original posts it shows that almost all your prior rides were thumpers, and this thread is meant to show your evolution in trying new bikes as an outgrowth of your ICE thumper experiences. That would be the simple thing to understand. But I guess I must agree with Joexr and state the obvious, its not a thumper! Consider yourself advised.
__________________
Disclaimer: I reserve the right to be wrong, claim I never knew you, and have no knowledge of what I'm talking about. Have a nice day
edmoto is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-04-2013, 09:14 PM   #103
Wind_Rider OP
Gnarly Adventurer
 
Wind_Rider's Avatar
 
Joined: Mar 2006
Location: Idaho
Oddometer: 305
Quote:
Originally Posted by joexr View Post
Simpler , yes , more efficient , no. Oh , and by the way. ITS NOT A THUMPER!
Well, more efficient in terms of no lost power from turning gears.

And yes, not a thumper, but the electric bike section does not exist and I thought that the thumper crowd on ADV would be most interested in this bike out of the available choices.
Wind_Rider is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-05-2013, 04:05 AM   #104
antt
n00b
 
Joined: Jun 2011
Location: Brisbane, Australia
Oddometer: 6
Interesting reading so far Wind Rider. At the moment, the Zero bikes are the only electric motorcycles we get here in Australia. Unfortunately we don't get any sort of incentives to purchase them over an ICE bike, so they're rather expensive at this point in time. When I work back in the city I will definitely be considering one for commuter duties though.
antt is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-07-2013, 03:11 PM   #105
ecarnell
Gnarly Adventurer
 
ecarnell's Avatar
 
Joined: May 2010
Oddometer: 371
__________________
2014 KTM 500 EXC
2011 KLR
2012 Dacre Challenge -Team Explore the Bruce - 8th (i.e last) Place. 17:59
ecarnell is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Share

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

.
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is On

Forum Jump


Times are GMT -7.   It's 07:36 AM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.5
Copyright ©2000 - 2014, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
Copyright ADVrider 2011-2014