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View Full Version : Building vs Buying Pros and Cons



Lionstrike
16 January 2011, 1234
Just curious... what are the pros and cons of building vs buying an electric motorcycle?

Also, has anybody had any problems making theirs street legal?

Building:

Pro:

Endlessly customizable.

EASY to troubleshoot. After all, you built it. If something goes wrong, you probably know where it went wrong.

COST. A few dollars might be saved by doing the handiwork yourself.

Style since just about ANY bike can be made to be electric, any version of bike can become eco friendly. You're not limited to the stock model.

Con:

TIME CONSUMING!

MONEY PIT!!!!

Can be even more expensive if you have to go "back to the drawing board."

Engineering mistakes could be MAJOR problems. No real guarantee if you missed something important.

Anything else?

EVcycle
16 January 2011, 1236
How about buying a home built bike?

"Orange Juiced" will be for sale soon.

Lionstrike
16 January 2011, 1300
Why would you sell it? It looks like an AWESOME bike!

A lot of my reasons are financial. I am not **totally** broke or anything like that, but I also don't exactly hang out at the Playboy mansion with Heff and his hotties either :P
I am just a low level IT guy at a University.


So... I am doing this whole thing on a shoestring budget in the spirit of "Forkencycle" and Ben Nelson's projects. Everything I have was ebayed, from the controller, to the contactor, to the motor. Of all of this... I have just about everything I need... except the welding and fabrication.

Another thing is, I kind of need to customize this project myself. It's possible that I might need certain specifications (removable battery pack) that I might have to engineer myself. Since my bike will probably be stored outside, I want to make sure that I can remove the battery pack both as an anti-theft measure and to make sure folks don't mess around with it.

But... there's more than an off chance that there will be a couple of bucks coming my way soon. We'll see. I'll keep an eye out for Orange Juiced :)

DaveAK
16 January 2011, 1308
I'd forget about a removable battery pack. Whatever chemistry you use it's going to be pretty heavy.

Lionstrike
16 January 2011, 1309
I should be able to handle it. My build is only 48v max...

And I am a powerlifter :)

EVcycle
16 January 2011, 1545
Why would you sell it? It looks like an AWESOME bike!

But... there's more than an off chance that there will be a couple of bucks coming my way soon. We'll see. I'll keep an eye out for Orange Juiced :)


I am a working bloke and only have room for so many toys. The "Juice Cafe" bike will be my main ride plus I have the Zap car to keep rolling along.
Any of you that were in VA saw us having too much fun on the Juiced bike. It will be sold compete, but without the batteries. "Batteries not included" LOL

More on that soon.

BrammoBrian
16 January 2011, 1820
I think you have to ask yourself how much enjoyment you think you'll get out of the actual build process and the learning that goes along with it. If you've got a nice shop, good tools, and enjoy working with your hands, then the build would be very rewarding to you. If you just want to ride and experience a new technology first hand, then consider buying and getting on with the fun stuff. The other big bonus of buying (at least from Brammo) is full technical support and warranty IF something goes wrong. You've also got a community of other owners (see: www.brammoforum.com) to share experiences and headaches with...

Just my 2 cents...

EVcycle
16 January 2011, 1840
I think that is worth at least 4 cents!!!! :):)

Richard230
16 January 2011, 1858
Personally, I fall into the "just want to ride" a quiet motorcycle with no clutch or gearbox category. Plus, I continue to be traumatized by my experiences during the 1974 gas crisis, when there was no other option to gasoline and a private vehicle for getting back and forth to work. Finally, although I find working on my constantly malfunctioning GPR-S interesting and mildly educational, I get frustrated easily and want to get the work done quickly so that I can get back on the road. This is not a good combination for building or repairing mechanical or electrical devices. Most of what I have learned has been thanks to the School of Hard Knocks. I know a lot of what not to do and just a little of what works. So for me, I am willing to pay someone else do the build. It is cheaper that way.

BrammoBrian
16 January 2011, 1901
This = FUN.

http://i393.photobucket.com/albums/pp17/wisdesign/Brammo-71.jpg

This = FUNNER. ;)

http://i393.photobucket.com/albums/pp17/wisdesign/IMG_3238.jpg

EVcycle
16 January 2011, 1906
I like Both, ( the fun makes the funner.....better!!! )

If I bought a built bike I would just tear it down anyway..... to make it better?

ZoomSmith
16 January 2011, 2213
I think you will get more resale value from a manufactured product vs. a home made one.

In the end, it comes down what you hope to gain from the EV experience. I love to ride, but I'm having a ball designing and building.

Lionstrike
17 January 2011, 1205
Well...

I guess I want to build... ride... AND GIVE BIG OIL THE FINGER!!!

jazclrint
17 January 2011, 1223
Well...

I guess I want to build... ride... AND GIVE BIG OIL THE FINGER!!!

LMAO! Hell yeah!