DRILL BIKE 2.0
 


Donor Bike;’81 Kawasaki 550
Motor: PMG 132, 19hp
Batteries: 16 DeWalt 36V
Drive: Belt and Chain
Top Speed: 50MPH (limited)
Mileage: 9 miles per KWH 
Range: 10 miles
Weight: 230 lbs

SPECS

 
What is a P2PEV?...
I call this bike a Point to Point Electric Vehicle or P2PEV*.  My definition  of a P2PEV is a  purpose built vehicle that has a very well defined set of transportation duties, destinations and refueling locations.  In my case, I commute to work and run errands in the village.  I also can do a pre-planned set of other trips such as going to the University of Vermont and other occasional destinations.  The original Drill Bike 1.0 was a P2PEV to the extreme - only 8 mile range.  But with this range, I rode for three years and commuted to work and ran errands in the village and never got stranded.   I also had a LOT of fun.  BUT... I was stretching those 12 batteries to their limit in both power draw and capacity, so to give me a better margin, plus more range, I decided to bump up to 16 batteries.   So now I have a reliable 10 mile range which is just about right for my use.

WHY A P2PEV?...
There is a simple answer to this and it is all about weight.  Most vehicles are vastly over-weight for their purpose because they have to carry so much machinery or energy storage with them everywhere.   It is hard to quantify how much the extra weight costs us in energy, but a good estimate is that in an electric vehicle, about 25% of the energy is lost in rolling resistance and braking which are directly related to weight.  This bike is SIGNIFICANTLY lighter than its internal combustion counterpart - nearly half the weight!This much weight savings could conservatively save up to 12% in energy.  In the vehicle world, this is a huge improvement.   It is only because of this battery technology that I can have this weight savings with no penalty in safety or performance.  

* I believe this is a first reference for this term.  At least I haven’t found any citations elsewhere.
INTRO...
Welcome to DRILL BIKE 2.0.  In 2009 I converted 1981 Kawasaki KZ550 LTD to electric and used 12 Dewalt Drill batteries to power it.  I proclaimed it “Drill Bike” and created this page, and started riding.  After 2000 miles and 3 years on that version, I came up with two main improvements - more batteries and faster charging - and by mid-summer 2012, it will be charged 100% by Vermont solar power.   This will make it one of the first true ZEVs on the road in Vermont.  And for the first time since the age of horse transportation, none of the fuel will be imported.
  
Why THESE Batteries?
The Dewalt 36 volt battery packs are the only commercially available batteries using the most advance battery technology in the world, the the Nanophosphate Lithium™ cells - from A123 Systems .  These batteries are unlike any other battery because they can be rapidly discharged and charged thousands of times with no loss of capacity.  This means you need fewer batteries for the same amount of power as other batteries and they can be charged up quicker and you can do this over and over and over.  They are also lightweight and rugged.http://www.a123systems.com/shapeimage_8_link_0