The ebike season is starting to get in full swing and we're glad to announce a roster of new staff here at Grin to help us cope with the anticipated summer demands!
We've got Miguel now assisting with front-end sales to help customers navigate their kit purchases. Elvis is bringing to the table years of CNC experience to ramp up the productivity of our machine shop. Constantin has several years of experience as a technician the ebike industry and is helping in our support and repair department. Sean has worked in electronics manufacturing and the creative arts and had taken the lead in our LiGo battery assembly. And we have two coop students too, Ryan in software engineering making improvements to our website and Sam is doing his first mechanical engineering coop on our shop floor.
So help us in welcoming this crew of new faces to our team!
And that's not the end. We're still looking for someone exceptionally qualified at doing email based tech support. If you've got a wealth of hands-on experience assembling and troubleshooting ebikes, familiarity with the Grin systems, are looking for a change of work, well we could have an option for you so drop us a line.
First, thanks to everyone who came by to visit us at the Bike Show earlier this month, we had a great time meeting all kinds of folks with DIY ebikes on their radar.
One of our contributions to the event was a presentation on regenerative braking in ebikes. We've just edited and uploaded this talk to youtube since it's an a topic that's long overdue to get proper treatment.
If you are interested in the advanced regen control modes discussed in the 2nd half of the video, feel free to download and install the V3.2 beta firmware releases that are currently available in the Cycle Analyst software suite. We'll be making frequent updates and tweaks to this platform in the weeks ahead.
The BC Bike Show is BACK for 2022! We're excited to be able to join everyone for our first event in a loooong time and are hard at work getting our exhibit all setup.
This Show is a great event to see the new products and offers from Western Canada’s bicycle businesses. There are a number of fun and exciting presentations going on during the show. This year Justin will be giving a talk all about Regenerative Braking, that wonderful process of recapturing energy back into the battery rather than burning it up in costly brake pads. The talk will be Saturday, March 5th, 12:30PM at the Cycle Stage. Our booth is setup at B207.
As in previous shows, we’ll have a number bicycles converted using our kits available for viewing and potential test rides, including one of our Electric Penny Farthings (helmet, waiver and wrist braces suggested!!).
We're happy be mingling with crowds again and will have staff around all weekend to help with any questions you might have on ebike conversions, or other interesting e-Vehicle conversions. So please drop by and visit.
Where: Vancouver Convention Center (Google Maps)
When: March 5th 10AM - 6PM & March 6th 10AM-5PM
Coupon Code: CYCLING22 for $3 off admission (online only, NA youth or senior tickets)
Presentation on Regenerative Braking: Saturday March 5th, 12:30 PM – Cycle Stage
We've been producing short summary videos of key products recently, and hope these help newbies in the scene get a quick overview on the gear without going into a deeper dive. This process started off with a Double/Triple Bob video in December that was well received:
So we kicked off this year with an short explanation of Statorade ferrofluid for motor cooling:
And a summary of the Satiator charger now hot off the presses too:
We're planning to keep this up through 2022 until all of the key Grin hardware is covered this way! If you have a preference for what we should prioritize feel free to let us know by email.
Of course we will also keep up on the long form content as well, like the two recent videos on how to measure hub and rim dimensions for doing custom spoke calculations, and the detailed overview on how to use our hub motor spoke calculator.
Happy 2022 everyone and we've got good news to share on the battery stock front. The last of our large ebike battery orders that we placed at the beginning of last year has finally been delivered, including some new high triangular form factor options.
We're now carrying battery options based on a massive 100 cell triangular frame enclosure to support long distance ebike setups. These pack over 1.2 kWhr of energy neatly in the frame cavity of most diamond frame bikes. The 52V 23.5Ah option will provide over 120 km of range with typical ebike consumption rates, and a high voltage 72V 16.5Ah model will serve well for fast EV builds requiring 72 volt operation.
Large and Small Downtube Packs
We've also replenished our stock of 52V 20Ah downtube batteries for the ready-to-roll kit systems. These have been extremely popular workhorse batteries in long range ebike builds. Supply and availability necessitated a switch from Panasonic GA cells to Samsung 35E cells but they are otherwise nearly identical in performance.
At the other end of the spectrum, we received our first set of batteries using the small Reention DP5C casing with a 36V 16.5Ah pack that is lightweight and low profile. This is an ideal choice for more discrete bike builds where the pack doesn't stand out as much.
Finally, both our regular LiGo and high current LiGo+ cells and BMS boards are on hand again and our manufacturing staff are working overdrive making them into finished LiGo bricks. Within a few weeks we expect to be caught up with most of the back-orders and we look forward to having extra stock of these air-travel friendly batteries.
Hey Everyone, it's coming close to Christmas season and another interesting year about to wrap up. We want to thank all those who've been supporting us through our shop move and summer supply woes, and are wishing you all the best for these holidays.
Grin will be operational during the Christmas to New Years period but with reduced staffing, and our response times and shipping times may not be as quick.
Finally, big kuddos to all those who continue ebike riding through the winter season!
PRO TIP: If you do ride in freezing weather, you can expect your battery pack voltage to sag more than usual and the BMS to trip earlier in the discharge as a result. This is just a temporary effect that reverts when the battery is warm again. If you want to avoid this behaviour, keep your battery indoors until you need to use it, and consider wrapping the battery in an insulating material so it doesn't cool down as fast on the road.
COLD WEATHER CAUTION: While discharging in the cold is fine, please be mindful not to charge your batteries in below freezing temperatures, as this can cause dangerous lithium metal plating inside the cells. Bring your battery indoors or someplace warm before charging it up.
A few months ago our Grin Instagram account sprung back into life thanks to Aaron, our resident Videographer. It had been sitting dormant since the 2018 Suntrip race, but is now active again with weekly peeks into some of the stuff going on behind the scenes here at Grin.
If you'd like to keep up to date with activities, product rollouts, neat projects, and fun personalities, then give us a follow! See short videos like our CNC Lathe Delivery and First Customer Electric Sailboat Installation. We'll keep it sweet and interesting and look forward to engaging with you on this platform.
Our youtube channel subscribers have noticed a lot of solar related videos being dumped lately. From the 1300 watt installation on an electric sailboat to panel wiring tutorials to a follow up with Mark Havran, you'd be forgiven to think that the sun was always shining in Vancouver!
Anyways, summer may be winding down but our interest in the overlap between solar energy capture and personal sized EV's keeps growing. We now have a wide assortment of 50W to 170W Sunpower solar panels in stock, a good supply of MPPT charge controllers, and have recently written a new solar kit info page for those wanting to learn more. The sun may not be shining much anymore but there are many reasons to see how solar fits in with your winter project plans, not to mention that next summer the famous Suntrip Solar Ebike Race is taking place in America.
Well it's the middle of 2021 and you'd think from our blog updates that not much has been going on since the move. But as usual quiet on the blog is because we are wildly busy behind the scenes!
As has been widely discussed, 2021 is proving to be an exceedingly difficult year to navigate in the manufacturing industry. Oversease shipping costs have tripled, lead times on most ebike part orders have gone from 8-12 weeks to more like 8-12 months, if we can get them at all. We've been working exceedingly hard navigating this situation, finding alternative suppliers and backup plans to ensure we continue having items available for customers interested in DIY ebike builds.
In spite of our best attempts and planning over winter, the situation is still far from ideal. Here is an update on some key parts:
- Downtube Batteries: Many lower capacity models have been out of stock or cells not available, but our shipment ordered in January is finally expected to arrive at the begining of August and the full range available. Expect higher prices than before.
- Baserunner_L10 Controllers: Unfortunately these key controllers for our higher power ready-to-roll kits have been sold out since May, but spot buying and part substitution should yield a relief batch again in early August.
- CA3-WP: Many orders from the last few weeks have been hung up from an outage of CA3 devices, but luckily our next production is imminent and back ordered kits will be shipping this week.
Otherwise though, we are doing great in the supply of smaller geared motors and lower power ready-to-roll kits, and continue the rollout of innovative electric systems for DIY conversion of other vehicle types beyond ebikes.
Wheelbarrow motor and Kit
After the unexpected success of our initial order of geared wheelbarrow motors, we now have a fresh supply this time with the 16" wheelbarrow tires already installed to facilitate use of this hub in custom low speed and high torque projects.
Here's an overview video we just released of the motor
And a first order preview of the conversion kit
Marine Conversion Drive
We're also making great headway in our development of a custom high-RPM hub motor for direct drive in sailboats with inboard engines, and are taking this from our proof-of-concept into a commercial project this summer.<
For those interested, we have a sign-up sheet and are sending out update emails to keep in the loop of our rollout plans and participate in this pilot. Here's the latest video update showing the power of this hub right up to 5kW, and we have an even larger motor model that will do 8kW:
Adapter for Bosch Batteries
We've also got an initial batch of custom XLR->Bosch adapter cables made up to charge Bosch battery systems using our Satiator charger. This is one of the most often requested adapters and we're glad to finally have a solution.
The overmolded plug includes built-in electronics with a 42.5V cutoff as an extra safety against accidental use with a higher voltage charge profile, and we're looking forward to feedback from early adapters before we produce them in bulk.
Finally we've been continuously enhancing aspects of our website since the fall platform upgrade. Now you should be able to see much more relevant information about the components of each conversion kit, eta dates for out of stock options, automatic links to our motor simulator, and dynamically generated spec information among other things.
We know that there is still a long way to go to simplify navigating and finding the information you want, and appreciate your feedback and patience. This is a constant work-in-progress.