What does a modern student do in their spare time?  They get on their bike - electric of course. But in a few days what can be achieved?




G1 Puch frame conversion to electric cycle


G1 Puch frame conversion




The student in this case had almost no design experience before attending Hailsham Community College.  The brief was to design/build a practical electric cycle.  The first thing to do was paint the bikes frame blue obviously.  This student admits it is a basic machine with an old 24v pallet cart motor driving the rear wheel.  The normal pedal chain-set is reverse fitted to the rear wheel.  The on/off (go) switch was initially mounted on the handlebars, made from some copper brake tubing - but it just couldn't handle the amps and got too hot.  It was decided to make a new beefier switch from 15mm copper pipe (plumbing), beaten flat and folded to form the contacts.  This switch was moved to the foot pedal for comfort and works much better.



GEM 1 Puch electric cycle motor


G1 electric cycle motor and battery tray welded to the Puch frame



Battery weight is a problem.  The G1 uses two bulky lead-acid leisure batteries but this machine is a development stage in the search for more performance.  It's not that the bike isn't fast - it is - around 30mph in 3rd gear (unconfirmed).  It's just that it could be so much more efficient with a smaller motor such as the Lynch pancake design, an electronic controller and better gearing.  The student wanted to make the bike more fashionable and was considering if it would be possible to incorporate solar cells somehow or a reversible fuel cell!  We like the sound of this especially, but it's all down to cost. Imagine what speed would have been obtained using modern lithium ion batteries?


In this case the student could only achieve so much and did not take many development stage photographs for you to enjoy. Not a bad effort though in the limited time and without using any of the modern electric high efficiency motors now on the market.









 Upgraded 350w electric cycle







Literally thousands of students around the world are regularly achieving good speeds and range with their electric cycle conversions. In 2004/5 the G1 was considered to be quite advanced. In 2012 it looks pretty mundane, but it is the experience that engineers gain when trying out various configurations that eventually leads to a successful formula - and who knows, one day electric cycles may become practical every day motoring as a result. 










 Mongoose electric cruiser








If anyone wants to tell us of their own electric cycle project, please contact us and supply pictures of your machine. We'll post up a page for you time permitting, or link to your site or Youtube video. Examples of some decent electric cycle projects on Youtube are included on this page to give you inspiration. MAX









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