Electric motorcycle

Hello all,

I am going to convert a Honda Rebel 450 to electric. I have bought the El Chopper ET plans listed here…


I am checking out a kit with an Etek motor and controller and all the trimmings and have a basic understanding of it all. I am having trouble with batteries. I don’t want to drop a small fortune on them. I have been looking all over the net and at local stores. I don’t really know what I need. From what I have read I am sure I don’t want an automotive starting type battery because the discharging would cut its life down. I thought I would want a deep cycle but I just read that they require slow trickle charging and I was hoping I could charge it in just a few hours. If anyone could offer some advice it would be much appreciated.

How many volts do you need for your motor/controller combination?

it will be 48 volt

Well if you can find them you could go with what white zombie uses:

Enersys high current ‘Genesis 12V 16XE’ @ 16 ahr and 14 lbs. each

Go with at least 8 and probably 12.

I also like the Trojan J185H , 4 of them at 122 lbs each might be steep but you could go a long ways. 15 long by 7 wide by 15 tall. You could fit 4 crossways front to back. That would give you a really good center of gravity.

I am thinking the 488lbs will be more then I want to add to it. With me the bike and the batteries the weight would be near 800-900lbs that might be too much.

The Genesis batteries look like awsome batteries and they would be perfect for something like this. I will have to keep looking around though so far I havent found them much cheaper then $70-$80 and $800 is a bit more then I was wanting to spend on batteries.

What about this : UB12550 (Group 22NF)SLA Battery 12V 55Ah

This one meets my price range and has a nice weight to it…


Do you have a link to where you even found the 16XE(for sale)?


I didnt find a 16xe but I did find this :
Hawker (Enersys) Genesis 12 Volt/16 Amp Hour

I figure the 16xe must be a discontinued model.

I suspect that it is more likely just coming on the market. Have a look at the white zombie project. It is a good read at any rate.


Not sure about the differences either but:


edit: Ok, I finally trailed it out. The EX is the tougher version of the EP meant for high temp, vibration, or shock uses.


Sorry about dragging this out but I hate to leave something without understanding why.

Nice job on the research I looked all over for the EX and got nothing. I read about white zombie well I was looking for the batteries and he really stuck with those Genesis batteries for quite a while they seem to work very well.

I was at Wal-Mart last night and they have several deep cycle batteries. I was wondering if any of them might meet my needs? They have some that are multi purpose batteries deep cycle designed for starting. I know they will not be the best quality and they will most likely weigh a bit more, but I think the price will make up for it they have a 115ah battery for 59.88.

I got my builder’s guide for the EL chopper ET last night. I have read it two or three times already. There is quite a bit of frame modification involved. They basically cut the bike in half and add length to it. They have designed these plans with a future version in mind that will be a hybrid gas/electric. I think I will try to do it without cutting the frame up like they have. The plans will still be very useful they have all the wiring schematics in them and I will mount the motor in the same way they have. I still may end up cutting the frame to get the batteries to fit. I found this video:
[ame=“http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=G7wid_8k_7k”]Gomi Style - Electric Motorcycle Conversion[/ame]

I don’t want the saddle bag batteries like they have and there doesn’t appear to be too much room left in the motor area after they put in the first two batteries. I pick up my bike Wednesday so I can really get a good look at what I will need to do then. I will also start putting pictures up for anyone who cares to see.

And the project begins…

I got my bike today and my parts should start coming in tomorrow…

there now I got the right picture up there LOL

very nice, cant wait to see what all you do.

Here it is all stripped down and on its way to get the motor mounts cut out :

And here it is coming back with all the motor mounts and little tabs removed:

Now that we have all the room we are going to have I am going out today to get the batteries and the angle iron for the battery tray. My throttle, battery cut-off and charger came in friday and my motor came in yesterday so I can start to fit that today as well. I am expecting the controller tomorrow and my DC to DC converter will hopefully be here by Friday. I am still waiting on my sprockets and chain and I have no idea where they are. After tomorrow the sprockets and chain will be all that is holding up a test run.

Here is a parts list I put together as a guide for future projects like this…


Motor Perm-Motor PMG-132 12-72 VDC $895.00
6FT Cable Welding 4 Gauge - Black @$2.39/FT= $14.34
6FT Cable Welding 4 Gauge - Red @$2.39/FT= $14.34
Fuse ANL Holder $14.95
Fuse ANL 300 Amp $4.50
Controller Kelly PM 24-48 Volt Regen 400 amp $315.00
Throttle Magura 0-5K Twist Grip $39.95
2 Lug Magna Straight 4 GA 1/4" Hole @$1.55/EA= $3.10
4 Lug Magna Straight 4 GA 3/8" Hole @$1.55/EA= $6.20
6 Lug Magna Straight 4 GA 5/16" Hole @$1.55/EA= $9.30


DC2415 DC-DC Converter, 10 amp, 30-60 VDC in, for
nominal pack voltages of 36 & 48 volts, 11.8 to 12.2 VDC out,
non isolated $ 34.95


Emergency Push Button Switch $93.95
Rated 500 amps continious,
5000 amps surge at 12 volts;
and 250 amps continious, 2500 amps surge at 24 volts.
You should be able to run this switch up to
72 volts at 150 amps continious.


40 Chain, 15 Tooth, 0.75 in Bore, With Keyway and Setscrew $13.27
Part#: 40B15F3/4HT
Item#: 7671419

40 Single Strand Chain, 54 Teeth, A Style, Steel Sprocket $24.68
Part#: 40A54
Item#: 4475497

#40 Chain; 1 Strand; Riveted; Carbon Steel Material; 10 Foot Box $13.70
Part#: 40RIV
Item#: 8440007

Sub Total = $1498
shipping = $66
Total = $1564

  • Donor Bike & Batteries & Charger

    115AH Deep cycle batteries $59.98/EA + $9.00core/EA= $275.92


48V 20AMP ( 110V/220V Auto Switch ) Battery Charger $169.00 + $79.00S/H

Total = $2087.92

This list is exactly what I used except for the controller and motor. I used a Briggs & Stratton Etek DC Electric Motor I got for $580 +$26.88s/h and a Used Alltrax AXE 4844 400 Amp Motor Controller I got for $270 + $18.36s/h both on Ebay. On my list I went with the PMG-132 motor because it is rated up to 72v for future upgrades and I have read that the Etek isn’t being produced anymore. I don’t know if that is true or not if anyone knows please post. I also went with a different controller because it has a regenerative circuit built into it.

I have been on vacation for a week so I have made little progress on my bike. I welded the bottom battery tray in and now I need to make my top tray a bit wider so the batteries straddle the frame as I am about 1-2in. short of getting them under the frame. I could have avoided this if I had spent more and got AGM batteries and set them in sideways. I will have to see how my Wal-Mart batteries perform then think about different batteries next time. I am going tomorrow to take my sprocket to a machine shop and get it fitted to the rear hub. I thought about trying it myself but I really don’t have the equipment to bore it out and I am sure just drilling through it wont be quite as easy as it sounds. I still haven’t got my sprocket for my motor so I haven’t set the motor in place yet. I hate how things never go to plan. Hopefully I can get everything figured out this week and maybe be ready for a test drive next week.

Incase anyone is following along, just dropping a line to let you know I haven’t given up. The week we came back from vacation my wife threw her back out good so I was tending to her then I got sick LOL. I haven’t even been in the garage in over a week now… Maybe later this week I will get back to it…

lol i’ve been watching, but get better first and then get to work! lol

Keep this going, I’m interested in hearing what you’ve done. I’m converting a 1986 Honda VFR700F to electric. Its being shipped here.

I was hoping you’d get the kelly controller, as I’m intrerested in hearing of its performance. I might get one myself and test, there’s just nothing online documentation wise, and it may turn out that it doesn’t work as well as other controllers.

check my blog, http://blog.evfr.net
Let me know, I might be able to host

Hi everyone… Ok here is the story now… It turns out what I thought was a sinus/eye infection was an allergy attack and a piece of metal in my eye. After a week on antibiotics and not getting better my family doctor sent me to an ophthalmologist and he found a nice piece of metal rusting in my eye. The doctor had to dig a little hole in my eye to get it out because it had been a week and the epithelial cells in my eye had grown over the metal. Did anyone know the doctor has a small dremel tool he uses on your eye to get a rust ring out…? On the plus side the metal was down a little and to the right a little from my pupil so they think I wont have too much trouble once its all healed up. For all those saying how dumb I am right now let me just say I do wear safety goggles when ever I am working with a sander or grinder or anything else like that but every once in a while I forget to put them on right away and I’ll go over and turn on the grinder and as soon as I see the sparks flying off I remember. I now plan to put goggle as the garage door and wear them always in there no matter what I am doing cause let me tell you they numb your eye up real good so you don’t feel anything but you cant look away or anything and you have to watch the pick scratching at your eye and it makes a noise and its quite possibly one of the worst noises I have ever heard. The doctor really used a little powered de burring rotary tool on my eye too. I hope this serves to scare the rest of you into always wearing eye protection cause it really sucks and a few millimeters over and I could have been mostly blind in my left eye…