Goldwing electric motor conversion


Information and questions on GL1100 Goldwings (1980-1983)
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NoWings
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Goldwing electric motor conversion

Post by NoWings » Fri Dec 09, 2016 10:19 am



New to site. Anybody done an electric motor swap into these frames? I might do this eventually as I start to pile up the parts and get rid of the ICE stuff to help fund the project. Just wondered if anybody has gone thru this already.



harvey01
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Re: Goldwing electric motor conversion

Post by harvey01 » Fri Dec 09, 2016 11:47 am

Interesting idea! I guess no one has tried this probably because they do not want to reduce the ability of this tourer to go all day and cover 500 to 1500 miles depending on your riding style.

I have been following the electric bikes very closely and they just have no come up with anything (any type battery) that will allow you to do that kind of mileage in one day. They have increased mileage to maybe 300 or so but then a long charge is required and this is not possible when on a long trip.

But if all you do is ride around town, it should not be too difficult to make such a change.
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NoWings
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Re: Goldwing electric motor conversion

Post by NoWings » Fri Dec 09, 2016 1:14 pm

That's the plan. Nothing exotic. Just want to learn hands on.

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thrasherg
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Re: Goldwing electric motor conversion

Post by thrasherg » Fri Dec 09, 2016 2:24 pm

Welcome to the site, I don't recall anyone having done an electric conversion, they are just too expensive, batteries are too heavy and the range and charge times still don't make it practical for a touring bike.. Have fun with your toy.. :D

Gary

NoWings
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Re: Goldwing electric motor conversion

Post by NoWings » Fri Dec 09, 2016 2:41 pm

I hear that! This bike was going to the junkers. It had a title so I bought it. If I can build something to ride to and from work, I'd be content. I want to learn the do's and don't s of electron flow and hope fully not electrocute myself in the process. Going with 48 V or so. Battery technology is bound to leap forward soon :)
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themainviking
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Re: Goldwing electric motor conversion

Post by themainviking » Fri Dec 09, 2016 7:08 pm

I would not think 48V would be adequate for the weight of the bike and rider to get any kind of longevity out of a charge. Ebikes are pretty light and they are already up to 72V. Good luck with your endeavors tho, and please keep us up on how things are going. The topic is very interesting.

Perhaps WindAdmin could rename this thread to "Conversion of a Goldwing to Electric" or some such to make it easier to locate.
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NoWings
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Re: Goldwing electric motor conversion

Post by NoWings » Fri Dec 09, 2016 8:33 pm

Thank for the info!

I was looking at something like this...
http://www.buggiesunlimited.com/product ... wAodNKoOQA

Here this conversion...

http://www.thunderstruck-ev.com/budget- ... ushed.html

It will be next year after spring when I start on this project. For now, it was just an introduction.

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WingAdmin
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Re: Goldwing electric motor conversion

Post by WingAdmin » Mon Dec 12, 2016 10:52 pm

48 volts will not be anywhere close to enough for a bike of this weight. The problem is that at 48 volts to motivate a bike of this weight you're looking at HUGE current (amps) which means HUGE thick cables, expensive heavy motor, and a massive, heavy-duty controller.

The higher the voltage the better. The unit of energy to move the bike is actually the watt, and to get watts you multiply volts x amps. If you have only 48 volts, you could need upward of 200 amps for acceleration, for 9600 watts of energy. 200 amps needs 0 or 1 gauge wire (about 3/4 inch thick) to transfer it. Not practical.

On the other hand, if you bump up the voltage to 480 volts (this is what my car's battery puts out), you can get the same amount of energy (9600 watts) with only 20 amps of current. 20 amps needs a comparatively small wire, say a 14 or 12 gauge (about the diameter of a Bic pen's ink refill).

The main problem is space and weight. Cars can stuff batteries under the floor, in the trunk, under the hood - they have relatively large areas in which to hide the batteries. Bikes on the other hand have a fairly small area in which to put them. The Zero electric motorcycles replace most of the "engine" area with batteries, and still can only manage to eke out between 35-55 miles on a charge.

Weight is the enemy, and a Goldwing is not a light bike. It has a heavy-duty frame to handle a heavy, powerful engine, similarly heavy-duty suspension, all of this stuff weighs a lot.

I'm not saying that you can't do this, but just have some realistic expectations going into the project.

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Re: Goldwing electric motor conversion

Post by NoWings » Mon Dec 12, 2016 11:03 pm

Thank you for your input. That really puts it into perspective. I thought the heavier frame would handle the weight of the batteries/motor/hardware better than a light frame say a 500 or 600 bike. I've also read a bike using a chain sprocket is the ticket because the shaft design is rather heavy. As for the voltage aspect, I wanted to go with an AC motor set up instead of DC. How would that play into the numbers you described above? I'm at the research stage at this point. All your help is appreciated.

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Alan_Hepburn
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Re: Goldwing electric motor conversion

Post by Alan_Hepburn » Tue Dec 13, 2016 6:26 pm

WingAdmin wrote: The higher the voltage the better. The unit of energy to move the bike is actually the watt, and to get watts you multiply volts x amps. If you have only 48 volts, you could need upward of 200 amps for acceleration, for 9600 watts of energy. 200 amps needs 0 or 1 gauge wire (about 3/4 inch thick) to transfer it. Not practical.
Just for a point of reference - I think our bikes put out somewhere around 90 hp? Convert that 90 hp to watts and you get a hair over 67KW!
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WingAdmin
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Re: Goldwing electric motor conversion

Post by WingAdmin » Wed Dec 14, 2016 8:52 am

NoWings wrote:Thank you for your input. That really puts it into perspective. I thought the heavier frame would handle the weight of the batteries/motor/hardware better than a light frame say a 500 or 600 bike. I've also read a bike using a chain sprocket is the ticket because the shaft design is rather heavy. As for the voltage aspect, I wanted to go with an AC motor set up instead of DC. How would that play into the numbers you described above? I'm at the research stage at this point. All your help is appreciated.
An AC motor will obviously need an inverter to convert the DC from the batteries to the (usually 3-phase) AC needed for the motor. You'll likely get a smaller, more powerful motor as a result however. In either case you'll need a controller of some sort, typically using PWM (pulse width modulation) to control how much power is going from the batteries to the motor.

You're right about the chain drive - the shaft drive is heavy because it is designed to handle the acceleration (and deceleration) of a 800 lb bike (plus riders and fuel).

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Re: Goldwing electric motor conversion

Post by thrasherg » Wed Dec 14, 2016 2:51 pm

I think you will find that all electric motors in vehicles are now brushless, meaning they work of some form of AC current not DC. Most motor controllers convert the DC voltage to a multi phase ac signal and drive the motor. Brushed motors do not last very long in this kind of application (high power), hence the move to brushless, far fewer parts to wear out and better efficiency at high power ratings, but needing a much more complex and expensive speed controller!! If you are seriously wanting to do this, I would suggest building a small RC controlled car with a brushless motor, the principles are the same but it's much cheaper, you can then understand how the control system works and then try to scale it up to your motorcycle, but it will be very expensive.

Gary

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spiralout
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Re: Goldwing electric motor conversion

Post by spiralout » Thu Dec 15, 2016 9:09 pm

Normally, I'd b*tch about someone "converting" a GL1000 to anything other than factory stock but in this case, if you want a big, heavy bike to experiment with instead of something efficient, I say go for it.
But....
Please don't cut the rear of the frame off to make it a "bobber" or cafe racer. :roll:

NoWings
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Re: Goldwing electric motor conversion

Post by NoWings » Sat Dec 17, 2016 9:22 am

I agree with everybody. As far as costs go, it would cost about $2 Grand just to give this thing a tune up, change fluids, make other adjustments and rebuild the carbs. Shops are super proud of their work around here. Good news... maybe. A motorcyle nut wants it. At least I saved the motorcyle before it was crushed. I'll find a lighter frame bike if I sell it. I'll start searching for a 500-750cc frame instead(leaning toward an older Katana or similar) It would be the only electric bike in town if I build it.

I have been looking at AC B/L motors for a while. They are more reliable, more efficient, more compact and ,yes, more expensive than the DC counterparts. A starter kit costs about the same as the work this bike needs to get it roadworthy. The real expense are the cells. It will all be worth it to me as hands on experience. I want to try stuff most conversion people aren't doing. We shall see next year.

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GL1500Foster
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Re: Goldwing electric motor conversion

Post by GL1500Foster » Thu Dec 22, 2016 10:22 am

Perhaps taking the batteries charger and drivetrain from an existing electric bike or Chinese scooter or something and transplanting it? Instead of re-inventing the wheel?

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Re: Goldwing electric motor conversion

Post by silverado6x6 » Sun Jan 01, 2017 9:00 am

Put the batteries in a trailer? I would first consider a way to make it a hybrid, get up to highway speed and use the electrics, say off hand making the front disc rotors with either cut geared teeth or to use a cogged belt and mount the electric motors on the forks, both sides.

Maybe a heavy duty DeWalt tool motor? Twonof them, on each side of the front wheel,like the ones for the circular saws, they only engage the front wheel, could possinly be used as a generator while dynamic braking, just offering some ideas.
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Jim1
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Re: Goldwing electric motor conversion

Post by Jim1 » Sun Jan 01, 2017 9:22 am

Now for the burning question, will the electronic engine out smooth the flat internal combustion engine?
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NoWings
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Re: Goldwing electric motor conversion

Post by NoWings » Sun Jan 01, 2017 1:47 pm

All are good ideas to try. I'm going to attempt a tried and true kit due to budget constraints. Battery trailer idea is a good one. Enclose it using Solar panels. Wish you all a happy new year!

NoWings
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Re: Goldwing electric motor conversion

Post by NoWings » Sun Jan 01, 2017 2:32 pm

silverado6x6 wrote:Put the batteries in a trailer? I would first consider a way to make it a hybrid, get up to highway speed and use the electrics, say off hand making the front disc rotors with either cut geared teeth or to use a cogged belt and mount the electric motors on the forks, both sides.

Maybe a heavy duty DeWalt tool motor? Twonof them, on each side of the front wheel,like the ones for the circular saws, they only engage the front wheel, could possinly be used as a generator while dynamic braking, just offering some ideas.
Funny, I was at good old HF looking around and came across their 40v power tools. Batteries run about $60 a pop. Great minds think alike. Time to learn about the limitations of electron manipulation.

Took pic of the battery, BTW. It fits the in the palm of your hand.
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40v battery
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Justmikey
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Re: Goldwing electric motor conversion

Post by Justmikey » Tue Jan 03, 2017 6:35 am

Two words: Golf Cart
and maybe a shoehorn...

The electric golf cart industry has everything you need off the shelf. Just fitting it into a GL is the trick.

NoWings
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Re: Goldwing electric motor conversion

Post by NoWings » Sat Jan 07, 2017 8:31 am

Justmikey wrote:Two words: Golf Cart
and maybe a shoehorn...

The electric golf cart industry has everything you need off the shelf. Just fitting it into a GL is the trick.
I've been looking at kits for cars. There are some very nice motors out there that would provide plenty of torque. The AC-20 through AC-70 series motors are drawing my attention. I don't want to break any records with this build. As I mentioned before, it will suffice if I can commute to work at least twice a week and recharge with solar panels. I don't want to rely on the grid since that will slow down realizing the "savings" of electron motion. Solar panels are getting cheaper but not fast enough.
An AC-35 motor kit is sort of reasonably price. The battery bank is just as expensive. Solar panels another grand and I should be set for a couple years. Still planning.

NoWings
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Re: Goldwing electric motor conversion

Post by NoWings » Sun Jan 08, 2017 10:59 pm

http://www.thunderstruck-ev.com/hpevs-a ... it-en.html

Here is this motor kit, for example. Claims are of just over 40hp with a 48v configuration. From what I have read, 40hp from electric motor translates to about 80hp when compared to an internal combustion engine. The electric motor is more efficient and torque starts from the get go. No need to wait for any certain rpm power band as with a gasoline engine. Range depends on battery bank (s) and riding style as with size of fuel tank and riding style on the counterpart engine.
Going with a kit like this leaves only a few other items to be sourced plus bracket fabrication. 48v is border line for a nice jolt if anything went wrong. 72v would be better as 144v would definitely rock.

Justmikey
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Re: Goldwing electric motor conversion

Post by Justmikey » Mon Jan 09, 2017 7:01 am

Maybe a sidecar rig...
Room for batteries, surface area for solar panels...

NoWings
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Re: Goldwing electric motor conversion

Post by NoWings » Mon Jan 30, 2017 8:53 am

I have purchased a lighter bike for the conversion, Vulcan 750. It was inoperable but i messed with it and now it runs pretty good. Fixed a couple of issues and it runs strong still. R/R might be out as battery is not getting charged. Electric conversion at a halt do to my ICE instinct kicking in.
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Re: Goldwing electric motor conversion

Post by NoWings » Sat Feb 11, 2017 11:05 am

Still researching. Not Givin up just yet.

How this with a big fat tire for the GL1000?





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