In the end, I opted for a DPDT+OFF rocker switch, as using diodes introduced forward voltage drop and this interfered with charging enough for me to have second thoughts. This arrangement does require that the BMS be “flashed” to initiate it, which can be done by the charger in charging mode but for discharging, I found that shorting the B- and the P- for less than a second initiated the BMS and it then latched itself on, so I installed a reset button. If I had used a DPDT switch without an off position then I would not have needed to do this. However, when the BMS hits a low voltage group e.g. going up a steep hill, it will not automatically reset when the voltage recovers, so you need to use the reset button if you want to get the last bit out of the battery. I’m toying with latching this button when discharging, as the voltage drop knocks the controller out, so I think I’ll get a reaction like traction control, without having to manually reset the battery (which is annoying as it’s in a backpack).
If you are excited about this improvement in battery chemistry, (NCM being 25% smaller/lighter that the fussy LiFePO4, and 300% better C-rate than the reliable and non-fussy LiMnO2) you may also be asking the question…What chemistry is next?
Since most welders have arms like mine, I’ll show you how I did it. I started by hot gluing two parallel groups together in an offset fashion, making sure the ends were opposite (one positive and one negative at each end, as shown in the picture). Then I snipped a pile of nickel strips long enough to bridge just two cells.
A BMS isn’t necessarily strictly required – it is possible to use the pack as is, without a BMS. But that requires very careful monitoring of the cells of the battery to avoid damaging them or creating a dangerous scenario during charging or discharging. It also requires buying a more complicated and expensive charger that can balance all of the cells individually. It’s much better to go with a BMS unless you have specific reasons to want to monitor your cells by yourself.
Well, you’re right that I wouldn’t recommend it! I admire your ingenuity but there are a couple big issues with this setup: 1) You have 4 groups of 10 series cells but no way to balance between them. The 4 cells need to be paralled before they are wired in series otherwise they will get increasingly out of balance with each charge/discharge cycle. 2) I’m not sure you’d get a good enough contact from a copper spring or busbar that is just held on the end of the cells in compression. The copper will also corrode over time and caused increase resistance at the point it touches the cells and problems down the road.
Lipo batteries are currently the “hottest” battery choice for electric bike enthusiasts. LiPo batteries are the most power-dense type of battery available to electric bike riders today. The problem is that LiPo battery packs for e-bikes are hard to find, especially one with high output if you are building a racing bike for riding off road.
I have been looking up materials and researching where to buy them for my battery pack. I’ve come to the exact conclusions (and almost the exact same materials) that you write about in this great article. Too bad i didn’t find it earlier… Doh!
I am however encountering problems in finding a BMS for my pack which will be 2 or 3 P and 7 S to replace 24V 6 AH in frame battery pack. Can you please enlighten me as to where I can access a suitable BMS. Thanks for any help. K.
This is also why the common and affordable RC smart-chargers are powered by a separate DC power supply. Many RC enthusiasts spend a day at a park, and while flying an RC plane, they have several other battery packs that are charging from their cars 12V system.
Next, I added the third parallel group after the second, hot gluing it in place in the same orientation as the first, so the top of the pack alternates from positive terminals to negative terminals and back to positive terminals along the first three parallel groups.
The figure that matters most when comparing how far a given battery pack will take you is not the amp-hour capacity but the total energy stored watt-hours. To make things more familiar, one watt-hour is one-thousandth of a kWh, the unit of energy used to measure household electrical usage. The watt-hours stored in a battery pack is approximated by taking the actual amp-hours and multiplying it by the pack voltage.
Your battery pack size is based on voltage and amp-hours. The higher the voltage and the higher the amp hours of your battery, the more range your battery will give you. A 48V 10-Ah pack gives you 480 watt hour (48 X 10). This gives you an easy way to determine exactly how much battery you are buying. The wattage of a battery is the only accurate determinant to judge what range your finished ebike will have.
That’s a good option. You’ll notice about a 30% increase in power, as well as a 30% increase in speed. Your motor can certainly handle it, the question is if your controller can. Make sure it’s rated for 48V or you’ll need to swap in a different controller.
hello, firstly i would like to say that i think this is a brilliant article its really helped me understand a lot more about how this works and how i can use a similar system for my project but i am a little confused and i was hoping to pick your brains….
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.
With the Multimeter I see that is everything OK, I see the voltage of the 4S in B+ and P-, but when I connect the motor nothing happens, the voltage goes to zero. At this moment I want to discharge the batteries and I connect B- to B+ and is working OK, of course.
3. i saw 18650 and 26650 li ion batteries which are more powerful such as 6000 – 8000 mah. i think they are fake??? i need 48v 10ah or 20ah minimum i guess as a pack ??? your advices are important. thanks for all…
I’m mostly familiar with BesTech’s 72V BMS’s and haven’t used a 52V BMS from them, so I can’t give you a recommendation on a specific 52V (14s) BMS from them, sorry. I have used this 14s BMS twice and it’s worked great for me on two 14s7p packs I made with Samsung 26F cells.
The very first consideration when choosing a battery pack is ensuring that it can handle the current draw of your motor controller. If you have a 40A motor controller, but your battery is only rated to deliver 25A max, then either the BMS circuit will shut off the battery at full throttle, or the battery will be stressed and have reduced cycle life. The converse, having a battery that has a higher current rating than what your controller will draw, is no problem at all. In fact, it can be quite beneficial.
The BMS is for 7S, I connect B1+, B2+, B3+, to the negative of the first serie. B4+ is connected to the positive of the first serie, B5+ positive of 2nd serie, B6+ positive of 3rd serie, B7+ positive of 4rd serie.
Regarding that welder, I’ve used it on a 20A circuit but I don’t own it (it belongs to a friend of mine) so I can’t give you the best firsthand experience as I’ve only used it at his place on a 20A circuit. My welders, which are similar but a slightly earlier model, are run on a 20A circuit at my home. I live in Israel and we have 220V wiring at home like in Europe, so I can’t tell you for sure how it will work on 110V. If there is the option of running it off 220V in your garage or laundry room, that could be another option, but I’ve heard of people running on 110V in the US without problems so I can’t say for sure. Sorry I’m not more help on that front.
Lithium Ion electric bike batteries are ideal for those that plan to ride longer distances and or more frequent trips. The commuters dream battery, lithium batteries can stand two complete 100% discharges a day for years. Discharging the battery half way riding to work or school, then parking all day at half charge does no damage to a lithium electric bike battery. So the urgency to recharge immediately is not like SLA’s. Since discharging to 100% empty does not significantly harm lithium electric bike batteries, the usable range of the lithium electric bike battery is roughly double that of SLA’s. In typical electric bike use, Li-Ion batteries last from two to four years. Proper storage of Lithium Ion batteries is important when the electric bike will not be used for more than a few weeks. Unplug the battery from the electric bike, charge fully, and then store in a cool but not frozen, dry place.
If you are concerned about the speed and power of an electric bike, pay attention to the motor size. Electric motor size is measured in watts and usually ranges between 250 and 750. When deciding on the appropriate amount of wattage, think about factors like the weight of the rider and the desired speed and terrain for the bike. If your child will mostly be on a flat surface, lower wattage should suffice; if they are planning to ride up and down hills, look for a bike with a larger motor.
I’m mostly kidding, but if you use cells that are rated for more current than you’re trying to pull from them, you’ll create a lot less waste heat and both options will be perfectly fine and healthy for the battery.
So I’m going to first use a wider (285 mm to be exact) but shorter piece of shrink wrap to go around the long direction of the pack. That will seal the ends first, and then I can go back with my long and skinny piece of heat shrink to do the length of the pack.
Hey, I’m about to build my 16S2P pack from 32 Samsung INR18650-25R cells bought from batterybro.com. How far apart can their voltages be when you connect the parallel packs? They seem to all be charged between 3.52V and 3.56V.
You too can find a metal box to store your batteries in while riding and charging. Here is an example of a custom built metal box that holds six hobby king packs perfectly (make certain to add a vent so pressure does not build up if a pack goes into flames!):
There are two main levels of spot batteries for electric scooters replacement currently available: hobby level and professional. A good hobby model should run about $200, while a good professional one can easily be ten times that price. I’ve never had a professional welder because I just can’t justify the cost, but I do own three different hobby models and have played around with many more. Their quality is very hit or miss, even on identical models from the same seller. Unfortunately the lemon ratio is quite high, meaning you could fork over a couple hundred bucks for a machine that just won’t work right (like my first welder!). Again, this is a good reason to use a site with buyer protection like Aliexpress.com.
Really nice article you made here. very helpful. I do have some questions about the BMS board you used. Would you know where I could find any type of schematic for it because im trying to see whether I can use more then one of those BMS boards on one pack
Why do we alternate sides of the pack during the welding process? We do it because in this way we connect the positive terminal of each parallel group to the negative terminal of the next group in line. That’s how series connections work: always positive to negative to positive to negative, alternating between the two.
hi i was considering adding a second set of batteries to my ebike in parallel to double the range but heared on a thread somewhere that this can damage/overload the controller which i suspect is a load of tosh but can anyone confirm/clarify this as i assumed the amp hour capacity was just that and the max amp output was just that, the maximum that can be drained at once, my understanding is it doesnt matter what amp hr the pack is as the amps drawn into the controller is governed by the demands of the motor which wont change if i have 2 packs connected.