Electronics Mounting Shelf

11 12 2010

So, this week’s obsession has been figuring out the shelf that will hold the electronics.  The shelf will sit under the gas tank shell above the “C” and “D” battery packs.

The shelf will be attached directly to the motorcycle frame, and originally, i was hoping to not have to weld anything to the frame to make this happen.  As it turns out, there were a few options, but none were very good.  As such, I took another trip to the TechShop to do some welding.  I welded four tabs on the frame with 1/4″ holes in them to mount the shelf. Here’s a somewhat blurry iphone pic showing the tabs:

Tabs on moto frame

One of the issues with the shelf was fitting it under the gas tank shell.  You can kind of see from this picture that the back of the tank shell sticks out towards the front of the bike:

Another shot of the cut up tank.

Luckily, the shelf is higher than the lip of the tank shell, so it actually sticks back to the back of the tank.

Here’s a series of pics trying to figure out what the size and shape of the shelf would look like.  First was some cardboard…

The first test shelf in cardboard to help figure out what fit under the gas tank

Then some wood so i could see if some of the electronics (in particular, the controller, since it’s the biggest and bulkiest piece) would fit:

The shelf, in wood

Then, finally i had a piece of 1/8″ sheet aluminum that i bought a while back.  I’m not actually sure what i planned on using it for, i think it may have been to provide shear bracing for the battery cage (but it certainly doesn’t need it).  In any case, it was the perfect size to cut up for the shelf…

The shelf, in 1/8" sheet aluminum

I spent far too long thinking about how to mount it to the bike.  Not only about whether or not to weld the tabs to the frame, but also how to get the thing mounted.  There were a bunch of ideas, from welding another frame, to bolting some angle aluminum to the shelf and then running flat bar from the bike to the shelf.  I ended up using a good-old brute force method.  I bent some 1/8″ thick, 3/4″ aluminum bar with a hammer and a vise to make the turn from horizontal to vertical.

A piece of mounting hardware

Then i screwed them to the bottom of the shelf.  Once it’s all set, i’ll probably tack-weld the mounts since i’d like to reduce the number of screws (that can fall onto the batteries).

Here’s a couple of pics showing the mounting and a test placement of the electronics.  Being that it’s a motorcycle, there’s not much space, so it’s like playing electronics tetris, except that if you get it wrong, there’s a big ball of plasma as a “game over” signal. 🙂

The mounting hardware on the newly added tabs welded to the frame.

A test of placing some of the major electronics pieces on the shelf

A test of placing some of the major electronics pieces on the shelf

More to follow…Next up is getting all of the wiring figured out.  🙂




2 responses

21 07 2011
JD Howell

Can you tell me what wheel-motor you’re using on your bike ? I am curious what the power requirements are, how many watts it uses and rpm rating. Also, what is the sound output like ? Have you measured the decibels at all ?

Please reply to: bdchowell@hotmail.com. Thanks and great job you’re doing !

21 07 2011

Hey there.


The motor is an “EnerTrac” MH602 motor: http://www.enertrac.net/

You should be able to find all of the information you’ve asked for about motor specs on their site. I have a feeling if i tried to answer, i’d just get it wrong anyway. 🙂

When starting up from a stop, it is somewhat louder than i expected (but not as loud as a gas engine). It vibrates some at speeds under 20 mph as well (but that may be because my bike is heavy and the motor is under a bit of stress getting off of the line). Once I get over 20-30, it’s basically silent and you can’t feel it at all. it’s awesome. 🙂

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