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Privateer

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Hello! :)

 

I have recently found out about electric skateboards, and I am amazed by them.

I really want to own one, but it would be only economically feasable if I can commute with it to work. (about 8 miles - 4 miles each way)

 

I am pretty interested in the ES AIR BOARD 500, as it seems light (8 kg) and fast enough (around 30 kmh - 18 mph).

 

I am concerned about the rain, though. Here in Spain, especially in the area where I live, we have around 80% of sunny days.

However, as I plan to use this thing everyday to work, what would happen in the event of sudden rain? Should I stop using it, and carry on my hand while I walk the rest of the way to my destination?

Is there a way to make it waterproof?

 

Also, I am concerned about how relieable this skateboard is. Can you expect to use it for a few years? I've seen the guarantee just covers a 6 months period.

 

What about the maintenance?

 

What about electricity consumption? Can you expect to notice a significant increase in your electricity bill? Or is it so small you wouldn't even notice?

 

I would really appreciate if any of you, with more experience than me, could answer any of these questions.

 

Thanks a lot!! :thumbsup:

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Hello and welcome to our little community and forum, Privateer! :D :thumbsup:

 

8 miles shouldn't be any problem with the LiFePO4-based boards, while the lead acid boards might depend on the steepness (permanent uphills is no good, voltage drops, board shuts off).

 

The ES 500 seems like a good decision as long as there are plain ways/streets without too much offroadtracks/holes/etc.

 

It will be enough for 2 x 4 miles without problems, as long as the first 4 miles ain't all the way up a steep hill (but even then I guess it will do the 8 miles total).

 

About the rain: It is possible to make nearly every board waterproof - just the needed work and time differs. The ES boards are pretty easy mostly: Seal any cable connection, add maybe a small thin layer of "Moosgummi" (don't know the english name) which is water proof without holes, clolse all holes in the boxes with silicone or something like that and you are good with rain.

 

Just let it dry and be careful about possible water "reservoirs" on spilled up water from the tires and the ground.

 

But remember: It is not made for swimming or such.. easy to prevent rain to enter but it won't withstand a shower or a bath without further sealing. :D

 

I would also add a layer of silicone to the boxes on the motors and all such parts, which show a opening for the water and are hard to clean/dry afterwards. Cable exits and such..

 

About the reliability.. U-hum. That totally differs, unfortunately. Depending on the parts you get, production faults and such, it -can- break somewhere in 2 weeks, just like some people experienced, but those breakings can be fixed by yourself mostly after you got replacement parts.

 

About the battery: That really depends. I would say 1 - 1,5 years of use is do-able without too much loss in the range. But it sure depends if everything works fine, some people had battery problems after short or longer times (1 year?).

 

There's no "proof" nothing will break. Most likely the trucks are a possible weak point, the drive belt, the drive cog wheel on the motor, the plastic wheel on the wheels and so on. Most of which is easily replaceable (except the cog wheel).

 

The power one board drains if charged 1-2 times a day is in a standard flat with 2 people probably not much feelable. A slight increase but if you use a 50"+ TV, like a Plasma TV in the evening for 2 hours, it will have consumed multiple timesmthe charging power amount.

 

So it is a slight increase but not really much, only a few $ in the year if you charge it once a day (and you probably will not ride every day around the year).

 

Much regards,

 

Wolf

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Hey!

Thanks for the answer! :)

That was an extremely interesting answer, so long.

 

Can I ask which board do you own?

 

I am really concerned about the quality of this ES AIR 500, even if the features seem so cool.

 

I'm checking the price, and with shipping costs and steel pivot trucks, the thing would cost me 745 euros approximately, extremely expensive.

I can accept that price for a quality thing, but if it will get broken in 2 weeks or 2 months, then I'm afraid I'm gonna have to find another option...

 

There's a local guy here who sells a 250W board for only 140 euros. I know that thing is super heavy and top speed is around 18 kmh, but I may buy it to test how it works for me in my way to work (if the range isn't enough I could always plug it at work, I guess).

I am considering it as a way to enter the electro skate world, and then, some time later I may buy a better board, especially a quality/reliable one.

 

By the way, the guy sells two, one of them has more narrow wheels, and the other has them wide. Both are 250W.

Which wheels are suppossed to be better?

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Hi there,

 

I owned a ES 800 but sold it modified (look here: http://www.custom-eboard.de/tuning-projekte/geco-es-1000/ ). I am building my board now wholely myself, only using parts available on the market which are reliable and fulfill my quality requirements.

 

I also modified this ES 600 for Beny ( http://www.custom-eboard.de/tuning-projekte/geco-es-600/ ) and even had two brushed boards here a while ago for check-ins and slight modifications.

 

My own board is not comparable to any of those on-market-boards, thats why it takes longer (and thanks to my perfectionism...) to get complete. I also have alot of hobbys and several problems consumpting my time, so.. it's done when it's done. :D :thumbsup:

 

The thing about the reliability is, that most, if not all boards or parts which are not "selfmade", are made in asia and have, from time to time and construction to construction, several possible flaws.

 

They will often work without problems but there -can- be problems. It's not like you won't get replacement parts probably if something breaks in the next time after buying one, but it might be still annoying to wait for the parts/repair.

 

Only thing guaranteeing you a quick solve of problems and low standby time in that case would be total self-build and knowing every wire and screw.

 

750€ sounds much, but if you take a Lead Acid board (offroad), a kart wheel conversion kit, a LiFePO4/LiPo/LiMN-battery and such additional stuff, you're easily on 1500-1800€ depending on your needs.

 

It's not a cheap hobby if you want "the best"..

 

An 250W board is more like a children's toy I guess.. if you have hills (somewhat steep) or long uprill range, I would buy a 450-500W at least. Not to talk about the range with the Lead acid cells which is often not 60% the range with same capacity LiPo/LiFePO4 thanks to earlier voltage drops.

 

I am not sure how quick the 250W will be, but before you buy one of those, try it out on a downhill/uphill way/street, to verify it works with your weight without problems.

 

Don't await more than 20-25 km/h, too..

 

About the wheels: I am not sure, usually as long as the rubber mix is "holding" on the ground and the wheels are round.. And you're only driving on-road, not in loose ground areas, the single wheel driven boards will work with thinner or broader wheels.

 

The broader ones might grip better but you won't want to drive on slippery roads anyways.. even less uphills with an 250W board with small tires (an ES 600 with pretty big tires would be more sufficient for that task but still needs sealing against water).

 

If the wheels are very grippy, it might work even with the 250W, but I am sure in my area (which is very steep uphills/downhills) the motor will smoke after 200 meters. :devil:

 

Much regards,

 

Wolf

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Hey, you are an expert, man!

Thanks for all the information.

 

I just bought today this 250W board, for 140 euros, as a first step into the electro-skateboard world.

 

I tested it in the flats, I'd say the speed is a bit less than 20 km/h. If it's 18 kmh, it's already three times faster than normal walking speed, it's like jogging at light speed.

This thing will pay for itself in a month and a half if I manage to go to work with it (+ train) instead of using my Mazda MX5.

 

The way to work is a bit downhill but not very steep (almost flat), it's the way I need to go faster for not being late to work.

I don't know if for going back to home will be fine or not for this thing. I don't mind being late then.

I could bring the charger to work and charge it there as it's very light.

 

Btw, the thing I bought weights 14.8 kg, hahaha, it's so damn heavy for such a little power it has.

And it doesn't go backwards.

It's getting charged now, I haven't had the chance to test it properly yet.

 

Well, it may be crappy, but it will help me get an idea if this is what I need before buying an expensive ES and then having to sell it by half of its cost if I wouldn't like it or it wouldn't be practical for me.

 

In august I'm having holidays and I don't wanna spend 745 euros at the moment, as I don't know how much I'll spend in holidays. 140 euros, however, I almost don't notice it.

 

If the whole thing works for me, I may buy a ES-Sports 600 or ES-AIR 500 in a few months, maybe by october or so.

 

 

Hey, do you have a thread about the board you are building?

It sounds interesting.

Edited by Privateer

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Hi there,

 

oh, you already got it, that was fast! :D

 

If it works on the flat with decent speed and you don't have steep hills, just flat with a little uphill, it should work fine.

 

20 km/h will be enough for the first test and training rounds I guess. That shouldn't be a problem, even less, if you can charge it at work (as long as it's not too steep uphill on your home route, it should work fine, then).

 

The ES 600 with slight modifications can go 45 km/h downhill, ~40 km/h in flat and 30-35 km/h uphills, depending on the steepness.

 

So if you think, the e-boards are what you waant to ride and you want to ride to work & back without charging and faster, I can suggest you the ES 600 with slight modifications depending on how you want to ride.

 

The ES 600 even works in my area which is either steep down or steep uphills, not much flat.. :D

 

140€ is pretty cheap, that's true. To test it out thats a nice price.

 

The ES 500 should weight under 14 kgs if I'm right (didn't test it) and the ES 600 probably 16-19 kgs (didn't weight it either, just a though from me carrying it, but with a backpack-like belt system its for sure easy to carry).

 

Here's my thread about my board but there was no news since a long time, as I don't want to show each step (else I might find it cloned cheaply in asia in a year :devil: ) but in the near future there will be updates.

 

http://www.elektro-skateboard.de/forum/elektro-skateboard-werkstatt-48/projekt-b-h-moth-1051.php

 

Much regards,

 

Wolf

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So you've got an offroad board. It seems great, the only drawback I see is it's probably a bit heavy, but depending on the use you'll give to it, that may not be a problem.

I hope you put photos or even a video of it when it's finished!

 

According to the ES website the AIR 500 is just 8.3 kg, and Legendary confirmed that's true.

 

According to the ES website, the ES 600 Sports is 12 kg if you get the lithium batteries one, with old lead-acid batteries it weights 19 kg (but 300 euros cheaper).

 

The board I got is concave, I believe the ES Sports 600 is concave too.

If I like the whole thing, and carrying 12-14 kg on my shoulder (with a strap bag or something) is not too hard, I will probably get it. The website states a range of 40 miles (over 65 km), that's hard to believe but it would be so cool.

If I get it, I would ask you about those slightly mods you mentioned.

 

If I find it's too hard for me to carry that weight on my back, I would then get the AIR 500, only 8 kg should be totally fine. But it's a pity to get less speed, acceleration, range, going uphill on steep hills, etc.

 

Damn, that thing has been 4 hours charging and it still hasn't finished, I can't wait to test it!

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Yea, the ES 800 was an offroad, my selfbuild will be one, too, but not that heavy like lead acid boards.

 

I live in the middle of hills, very little city, vineyards around, so offroad is very nice here.

 

8,3 kg sounds light, the ES 600 seemed alot heavier (after modifications, I guess 16 kg, but didnt weight it).

 

I guess, the ES 500 should work fine, just a bit slower than the ES 600, but if the weight matters, its a better choice. I don't know how far and long you have to carry it.. :D

 

Most of the boards are concave, the ES 600, the ES 800, and so on (and I don't think that they changed the decks). I hate concave, same with the people who I modded them for. So I replaced the deck with a flat deck for their needs. :D But it depends on your choice, if you like the concave feeling, keep it.

 

65 km is bullshit, seriously. In plain streets even with the newer 15Ah battery I guess 35-40 km at max., with uphills 30-35.

 

Maybe if you let the board run downhill without a driver you'll get 65 km range. :D

 

Much regards,

 

Wolf

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Well, I tested the 250W skateboard.

There's a big problem with it, the brakes. They are almost completely uneffective in downhill, even if it's not very steep. It just slows down the speed a tiny little bit. I need to put my foot down in order to really slow down or stop it.

 

Problem two, it vibrates a lot when I'm going on any pavement which isn't completely flat such as asphalt.

 

Ploblem three, which I already expected, is going uphill. It goes, but 5 km/h. And also, even after a 30 meters run going uphill, the engine gets hot and stinks :thumbsup: yeaaah, what a great stuff I bought. Well, this is what you can get for 140 euros, I guess.

The best option is to get off the board, walk, and make it roll next to you with the controller as if it's some kind of dog :frusty:

 

Other than all those big problems, especially the first one, the thing is fun to ride, especially when it's COMPLETELY FLAT and if you are on a bicycle's road which is usually made of asphalt, everything is pretty great. I'd say the thing can reach the 20 km/h.

 

Is there an easy way I could improve the brakes?

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Hi there,

 

hehe, that was the reason why I said, a streetboard is better than any offroadboard.. at least with one wheel drive and low power motor.

 

But it seems your motor is too weak to keep the brake torque high enough.. the same thing happens on one wheel drive offroadboards, even more if you change the ~24 cm wheels with ~28 cm kart wheels / tires.

 

The torque to the motor gets too high then, resulting in rolling hill downwards even with full brake activated.

 

There's not much you can do, if the controller pcb doesn't allow you to switch between two or more "hardness" settings, the ES 600 and 800 controllers allowed this but I needed the "harder" setting here in this hilly area.

 

You could basically change the drive cog wheel for a smaler one (the one on the motor) and raise the translation, making it easier for the motor to brake and speed up, but this would result in an even lower top speed. :(

 

About the vibration, I am not sure where it comes from on that board, if you can, try to find out if its the deck or the axles, then maybe I get an idea. :)

 

Much regards,

 

Wolf

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The vibration is actually from the ground surface I was riding, as it was pavement for pedestrians, not as smooth as asphalt, the ride experience is not smooth. As soon as I ride on asphalt, the vibration is gone.

 

In general, I like this board as a beginning, it has enough power to drive me at a speed quite higher than walking, but the big, big problem is it doesn't brake at all, it's terrible.

 

I am thinking if it would be possible somehow to make some DIY home-made brakes.

Maybe if I put a wooden block on the rear area of the board, and step on it lifting the front area up, the wooden block would scratch the ground and brake.

Maybe if could be even more effective with a layer of rubber on the wooden block... :confused:

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Ah, I just remembered that this ain't a brushless motor. So the "make it brake!"-mechanism is a bit more complicated I guess, for a brushlessmotor its just a brake chopper shorting motor phases.

 

Hmm.. but aside from a possible switch on the controller for different brake timings or a bigger motor (useless in your case, as too expensive and we don't know if the controller would work with it..) I don't know how the motor could brake harder.

 

Except the translation raise, means bigger motor cog wheel, but lower top speed.. pretty useless too for an 140€ board. :(

 

Sure you can add brakes or a braking mechanism, but I would prefer something not abrasive.

 

As example, you could try to find a little roll, which is made to brake permanent, but roll still. Like a oil suspended brake system which just makes the rolling harder.

 

If you mount this on a piece of wood and this to the deck (rear end) like 0,5 cm higher than the other wheels, you could brake easily.

 

If you don't find such a roll, you could try to find a cheap brushless RC motor (outrunner) and short 2 or 3 phases permanently, add a wheel to the drive shaft and attach it like a wheel to the piece of wood.

 

Just some ideas which don't need a whole brake system (expensive and alot of modifications are needed else).

 

Much regards,

 

Wolf

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Man, this thing is fun, even if it's so slow and I have to be careful with its nearly-useless brakes, I'm having fun with it.

I am still a bit clumsy with it, but I think I am improving.

 

I don't really like that people on the street are staring at me, and even dogs are barking, but who cares. :)

 

 

Nice idea about the roll, but I don't know where to find that.

I'll have to think about the possible solutions for the braking problem.

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Hi guys

 

Very interesting post.

 

privateer, I did exactly the same as you and brought a cheap board as couldn't make my mind up about the Es5OO or 600. That got me hooked and I saved and brought the 500 mainly due to the weight factor.

 

When it 1st arrived I was blown away. The power and speed and moverability awesome. Big smile on my face ever time I rode it.

 

Mine too was to get to work, which is 9 miles each way. Mainly flat but a few hills. The board flew up hills no problem. It made it all way easy. Charged it at work and getting home fine too. Going to work had never been such fun!! :cornut:

 

Now ref carrying IMO you it's still heavy you def need a bag to throw it over you shoulder. Found one perfect size surfing the web.

 

The bad side is I've had a few problems along the way. So far I've had a replacement motor (got jammed), motor bracket (snapped), drive belt (snapped) and just today a drive wheel! The parts take a long time to arrive when you need replacements as its quite specialist and es don't generally have stock in my experience.

 

Andrew at ES has been fantastic though. Top notch customer service and always willing to help or answer any questions. I def don't regret buying it!

 

So I've come to the conclusion that if I was deciding to buy again between the 500 & 600, I would gone for the 600. It's built much better for the distances I'm covering and given that I need to use a bag anyway the little but of extra weight I'd take in exchange for better performance and a more robust board. Once your used to the 500 you can pretty much ride it flat out no probs, you find yourself wishing it just had a tiny but more.

 

I'm busy now saving for the 900. It's got me totally hooked. It's board has been used far more on non work journeys the actually going to work lol

 

I would also reccomend ordering a spare drive wheel and belt at time of purchase. I did and have needed both lol better to have to hand than wait weeks without your deck!!

 

So my advice is go for it soon as you can afford order it you won't regret it!!

 

People always stare and I've been chased by dogs across the park, legged it from police, and even stopped by the army after being tracked by a sniper!!! I kid you not lol. The buzz you get from riding it though is all worth it!!

 

:peace:

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People always stare and I've been chased by dogs across the park, legged it from police, and even stopped by the army after being tracked by a sniper!!!

 

Wow, stopped from the army after a sniper tracked you - WHERE were you riding?! :D :devil:

 

Much regards,

 

Wolf

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ha! I know :)

 

I was in Greenwich park in the UK. Basically I cut through the park on my way to work each day. Leading up to the Olympics I got to the side entrance I normally go in and it was open fine, So I thought just a normal day.

 

I start going through the park but all the paths seem to be blocked with plastic barriers. I'm going this way and that trying to figure a route through. In the end I'm getting the hump so I jump over a few barriers etc to try and get out. Nearing the end I wizz round a corner and there is a row of Army men lined up blocking my path holding their guns etc. They call me over.

 

So I go over and the guy goes "what are you doing in the park!?" "We have been tracking you all through the park and your lucky one of our snipers didn’t take you out!!" I don’t know if they was joking or not but guy seemed serious lol. They said the whole park was shut as it was an Olympic venue, I was trespassing in a restricted area!

 

I did look a big odd as you can imagine I had a big rucksack on my back too with my works stuff in it, wizzing along on an electric board, with the remote in my hand which you knows looks like a gun! ha ha ha. Still why they didn’t have anyone on the side gate is beyond me. I had no idea they had closed the park. When they escorted me to the main entrance it was obvious it was shut as there was loads of army patrolling it etc.

 

I know they say skateboarding is dangerous but that takes the mick! :cornut:

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