We like to use Anderson Powerpole connectors as the standard discharge plug on all of our ebike battery packs. These connectors are ingenious since they are genderless, allowing you to use the same plug both on both a load and a source, and the connector design allows them to withstand the arc of inrush current when plugged into capacitive loads much better than bullet style plugs. For the charging port, we like to use the female 3-pin XLR plug standard. This is directly compatible with the Satiator charger, and the quality Neutrik XLR plugs are rated for a full 15 amps per pin allowing very rapid charging. Unfortunately, this option is not available for the smaller Hailong frame batteries and we are forced to use the lower current DC 5.5mm barrel plug instead.
Where things can get a bit dicey is in charging batteries that are parallel connected. If you leave the batteries in parallel while charging, then the charger current will get shared between the batteries and you can be sure that they are always at the same charge level. However, that does mean one of the batteries will be getting charged through the discharge port, and depending on the specific BMS circuit it may not have overcharge protection on the discharge wires.
Secondly, what is your take on modular plastic battery spacers (e.g. http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/50x-EV-Pack-Plastic-Heat-Holder-Bracket-Battery-Spacer-18650-Radiating-Shell-New/351681365193?_trksid=p2047675.c100005.m1851&_trkparms=aid%3D222007%26algo%3DSIC.MBE%26ao%3D1%26asc%3D36381%26meid%3Dfc487881e617412ba361731154a742b5%26pid%3D100005%26rk%3D5%26rkt%3D6%26sd%3D262123820960). Clearly this adds a significant volume penalty and a smaller weight / cost one, but if this is not an issue then how would you rate vs glueing? I can see the benefit of having a space between the cells to limit heat / electrical conductivity in the event of some kind of melt down, but any thoughts?
The next consideration is ensuring that the battery is large enough for your required travel range; it’s no fun having a battery go flat before the end of your trip. In order to determine the range that you will get from a given battery, you need to know both the watt-hour capacity of the battery, and how much energy you use per kilometer. Sounds complicated? Not really. As a rule of thumb most people riding an ebike at average speeds consume about 10 Wh/km from their battery, and this makes the math very easy. If you have a 400 watt-hour battery, you can expect a range of 40km. A 720 watt-hour battery? ~72km
For a 24V 7s pack, I’ve used this BMS a few times and been quite happy with it: http://www.aliexpress.com/item/7S-Li-ion-Lipo-Batteries-Protection-Board-BMS-System-24V-29-4V-20A-Continuous-Discharge-350W/32336397316.html
Having built a 13s4p battery to the best of my ability and hooked it up to my 48V 1000W ebike conversion kit…. the lights on the throttle turned on and the wheel spun! Initially I thought the project was a success but after mounting the battery and controller onto the bike and taking the bike for a test spin I ran into a major problem.
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There is some research into 18650 packs that use pressure connectors like in a remote control but most results aren’t impressive yet. It’s difficult to get a good enough connection to batteries electric scooter high enough power for ebike applications. The ones that are close to working use custom designed enclosures. Don’t attempt to do it with off-the-shelf 18650 holders with spring contacts — you’ll melt them in no time.
When choosing a battery for your bike, not only is the weight important but the volume is also important. You want your pack as small as possible so its easy to stow and easy to hide. So therefore you should consider you battery’s volume, not just its weight. For sure you need to go with a lithium chemistry and not an old school heavy and large Sealed Lead Acid (SLA) or Nickel-Metal Hydride (NiMH) chemistry.
So after buying a 48v 20 Amp battery from Ebay (and knowing very little at that point), I realized it didn’t have a BMS and heard rumors that if i attached it direct to the controller, it would see it as a short (controller would be closed) and blow the controller.
Hailong makes some of the more refined of the generic battery enclosures from china. You’ll see them online everywhere, stuffed with whatever cells and BMS circuit appropriate to the market being addressed. They secure to the water bottle eyelets on the down tube of your bike frame, and the narrow height of this pack design allows it to fit even on smaller or hybrid frame geometries that wouldn’t normally fit a pack. We have the smaller Hailong-01 enclosure in 36V (10s 5p) and 52V (14s 4p) layouts suitable for 20-25A current setups, and the larger Hailong-03 enclsoure in 36V 23.5Ah (10s 7p) and 52V 16.5Ah(14s 5p) sizes for higher current and capacity.
Connections are made with solid Nickel strips, spot welder to each cell. Each cell and each series is tested before assembly. The BMS will prevent over charging and will balance the cells after a full…
Thank you for the article! I am currently making a battery for an electronic skateboard, so I need the layout to be as thin as possible to allow ample room underneath the deck. Currently, I have 6 packs of 3 cells welded in parallel, and would eventually like to create a battery which is 9 cells long, 1 wide, and 2 high, for 18 in total (the two packs of nine would then be welded in series). I am wondering if I could be able to make 2 battery packs by welding 3 of my current 3 cell packs together in parallel to make a long, yet skinny pack, and then welding both packs of nine in series using the alternating system. Essentially, I would be creating a pack that would look like 3 of the ones you show above when making your first series connection. Let me know what you think, and thank you!
Please forward to every member of ur family of em3ev! Here it’s been a great ride! Tks guys for everything. I can do mtb again bcause of your kit. My lower back and my knee been injured badly and i got fibromyalgia so without ur help my bike …
Is it possible that the controller for this Rayos 600W (sorry thought it was 500W but it’s actually 600W) is inside the electric motor itself? I traced all wiring on the E bike but find no controller anywhere. Do you see anything majorly wrong with using a BMS to charge the cells but not discharge, as in sending the current from the battery directly to the controller / motor? I’ve been unable to find a BMS that can do 30A that isn’t very expensive. A side note, I was able to test amperage while riding and around 20A gets me 9 miles per hour, that is where my multimeter tops out! I’m 235 pounds. I’m guessing I need around 30A to get the 16 MPH I get now with the existing LiFePO4 battery pack.
I just found your article, and as if it were destiny, this is exactly what I am trying to do (build a battery pack with BMS, and charge with charger). I am new to this, however, and have a question or two…
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Your method of using the tubes might work but I still worry about how much current you could safely pull out of those connections. You can definitely charge the way you described but trust me, charging 2 or 4 cells at a time gets VERY frustrating. You’ll be spending days, maybe a week, getting your battery all the way charged again.
“…The wax is micro-encapsulated within the graphite matrix. When the wax melts, there’s enough surface tension between the wax and a graphite matrix that it doesn’t leak out. You could heat the material up to 300° C (570F), and it will become soft enough for a thumbprint, but it will remain solid…”
NiCd-Nickel Cadmium. This chemistry was half the size per a given power compared to SLA. But it has a low C-rate (Current producing capability) so anyone who made a pack out of them was restricted to low amps. There were no large packs for sale. E-bikers had to purchase rechargeable flashlight batteries and solder together a pack of a higher voltage, for which an off-the-shelf charger could be found to charge it up. Because of the low price of SLA chargers, 36V and 48V NiCd systems were common. When the price of nickel went up and the price of Lithium came down, NiCd died a quick death. Not even cordless drills use these anymore.
That’s exactly correct. You’d start by welding 10 parallel groups of 4 cells each, then you’d connect those 10 parallel groups in series to make one rectangular battery. I’ve done many 10s4p packs just like that for 36V 10ah ebike batteries.
The spacers you linked to make battery building a bit easier as you can set it up modularly, but as you indicated, they add a good amount of volume to the battery. I like to make my batteries as small as possible so I rarely use them. When I do, I use these ones, but it’s not very often.
Different batteries have different amperage capacities. Most cheap lithium batteries are not capable of putting out much amperage. If you have a 48 volt bike that performs well when using 25 amps, you are going to want a 48 volt battery that has close to a 20-Amp-hours or more. If you want to eventually hot rod your ebike (read our hot rod hub motor primer here), you may want to invest now in a high amperage battery. This will “future proof” your system by paying a little bit more now for the battery, but then you can program more performance from the controller in the future, if you want…
Now I’ve got all of my pack sealed in heat shrink with my wires exiting the seam between the two layers of shrink wrap. I could have stopped here, but I didn’t particularly like the way the shrink fell on the wire exit there, from a purely aesthetic standpoint. So I actually took a third piece of shrink wrap, the same size (285 mm) as that first piece and went around the long axis of the pack one more time to pull the wires down tight to the end of the pack.
A very affordable 13S BMS that I like is this 30A version, though it can take a few weeks or even a month to arrive since it’s coming all the way from China. http://www.aliexpress.com/item/13-lithium-battery-protection-board-48v-lithium-battery-BMS-30A-continuous-60A-peak-discharge/1741121963.html
The purchase price is often a turnoff for many people, but in reality $200 for a good hobby-level spot welder isn’t bad. All together, the supplies for my first battery, including the cost of the tools like the spot welder, ending up costing me about the same as if I had bought a retail battery of equal performance. That meant that in the end I had a new battery and I considered all the tools as free. Since then I’ve used them to build countless more batteries and made some huge savings!
NO Memory Effect to reduce the capacity over time, longer life, more eco-friendly 1.5V / 1200MAH – Same as regular AA battery For toys, game controller, wireless mouse, wireless keyboard, remote and so on SAFE & ECO & NON TOXIC – Approved by FCC CE & RoHS, the 1200mAH AA lithium batteries are guaranteed
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