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    Putting a hub motor into a 26" fat wheel

    I have been searching here for info on putting a hub motor into a 26" fatbike rim, but i can't find any info on this. If anyone knows of any links, can you please add it.

    I have been to a couple of bike shops and got the blank stare... and the 'sorry, that is illegal' line... so, I will have to learn to do it myself by the looks of it.

    What I know is, both the 1500w Voilamart motor and the fat bike rim have the same spoke count (36)... from what the bike shops did say, the spokes on an ebike are 14ga and normal bike spokes are 12ga... and bike shops CAN'T buy 14ga spokes.... so what I need is to find out how to know firstly, if it is possible to put a 1000w or 1500w hub motor into a 26" x 4" rim (spoke angles/nipple diameter) and if so, how to measure the spoke length needed.

    I have seen the spoke cutting and thread rolling machines on the interchoobs, my guess is they would cost mega bux, so, is it possible to buy a die for adding threads to spokes cut down from longer spokes?

    So, any info will help.. any links appreciated

    #2
    Sounds like you have some shops that just don't want to or know how to build wheels. It does take some skill and special tools like a truing stand and dish gauge are really nice to have but if you are determined and have the time can be improvised. I have not looked lately but there should be online wheel building calculators and with the wide range of hubs and wheel sizes these day would guess they should easily be able to handle you combo. Same with the spokes you will need, with the variety that is out there today I'm sure they exist. Look at how many hub motor e bikes there are with 20" fat wheels where the spokes are only like 3" long.

    If for some reason the calculator tells you you need a non standard length I'm sure there is some online place that will do custom lengths as well as some shops that have the machine. I have got custom ones done when I just broke a few. Shops can just stock universal non threaded spokes and make em as needed. I think they were like $3 each but hey to get back on the road in a few hours was well worth it.

    Did you get your numbers flipped around on the gauges? A 12 is fatter than a 14 or were the shops just that bad? I'm not even sure that is true that E bikes just automatically use thicker spokes. Being 36 is already 4 more spokes than some wheels have. Guess it depends on how you plan to use it and how much abuse its gonna have to take. You weigh 350 and plan on some hardcore off road downhills with jumps? Or you gonna be doing mostly streets, paved trails, or hardpack?

    Comment


      #3
      Thanks, yes, I was just going by what both bike shops told me... and yes, they must have it rrr's about. Just now I ordered a cyclo spoke rolling machine and a rolling head that can do from 14ga to 12ga thread rolling head... that way I can try using the spokes from the Voilamart wheel into the fat wheel... if they are too long, I can roll on some more thread and trim the excess... if they happen to be too short, I will get some longer 12ga spokes and cut and roll them. Once I know the correct length, I will be able to order some the right length. I am just looking for some different length nipples and washers too, so I am prepared for anything

      The bike shops were both 'high end'... one had no ebikes and the scowl on the guy's face was priceless once I mentioned 'ebike' ... especially after i had just mentioned the 'other' rude word (to them) Fatbike Click image for larger version

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ID:	115478 He was telling me that the 'Fatfad' was over and no one likes them, so you can't get tyres or parts... so they wont sell them. The other shop (also high-ish end) 99 bikes said it was illegal to put a motor over 250w into a wheel and tried to sell me an ebike for $2,400... however, I am a devout Click image for larger version

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ID:	115479 so will make my own (10x cooler and 10x more grunt)

      I will make sure to frequent those bike shops once mine is going... so their customers can see what they are missing out on Click image for larger version

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        #4
        The spokes on my 26" Voilamart wheel are around 163mm and diameter of 2.6mm, so unless the fatbike needs longer spokes for the wider spread of the spokes at the rim, the Voilamart spokes might be ok with longer nipples... will find out soon

        Comment


          #5
          Are you in the USA? Or maybe Canada or Europe where apparently the E bike laws are a little more strict and consistent? In the USA from what I can tell the federal law has a vague reference to 750 watts and its up to the more locals to narrow it down so it can vary city to city but several seem to be kinda looking at California's 3 level system which still seems to have some holes in it and is apparently enforced based on a sticker?

          I had only heard of the Hozan tool before. Be sure to let us know how the Cyclo one works out since it looks less expensive than the Hozan that seems to be the 'standard' of the industry.

          Since its a rolled thread I think in theory you could just thread the whole darn spoke if you wanted to and cut off what ever is left over after you build the wheel. Lots easier than doing math. 20+ years ago I used to build wheels. Most of the time it was just a replacement deal same for same so I didn't really have to figure anything out. I did build a few custom sets and remember it was a bit of a process and ideally required special tools to measure things and a book to show you the formulas.

          Do you happen to have a 3d printer? If so there were all sorts of interesting things wheel truing and building wise I saw people had come up with. Was going to get serious about picking a design and starting to build one when I found out my brother had one of the pro Park stands he wasn't using so problem solved without spending money or 3d printing.

          Dishing which is the centering is the hardest thing to deal with especially if you don't have a real stand with the 'calipers' that move somewhat symmetrically. Monitoring the 'hop' can also be tricky with a makeshift stand because you usually won't have an easy means to adjust that reference point either. What you need is a way to keep bringing in your reference points as you get closer and closer to where its supposed to be and that is a lot harder to do if you are improvising a stand.

          Comment


            #6
            Hi Eldo, thanks... I am in the ar$e-of-trailer (Australia) ... and yes I have a pair of Ender 3 pro's

            I have just bought these... so the wait begins

            Click image for larger version

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              #7
              Yes, I can either cut the spokes to length and then start a thread... or as you say, roll down to length and snip off the excess.

              Learn how to make your own battery with my book DIY Lithium Batteries: http://amzn.to/2jbxvzS or check out my second book - The Ultimate DIY Ebike Guide: htt...


              This shows you the cyclo machine like i ordered

              I also ordered 36 of each of 155, 165 and 175mm 12g spokes... as i said, the Voilamart spokes are about 160mm or so, 0ne of those lenghs should fit... might have to add some thread
              Last edited by Calcifer; 10-07-2020, 10:24 PM.

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                #8
                Dang looks like you are going pro. Just need a dish gauge, truing stand, and a secret door knock code and you could have an 'underground' illegal operation going there. Pssttttt, hey, are you the guy that can make and E fat bike?

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                  #9
                  Originally posted by Calcifer View Post
                  Hi Eldo, thanks... I am in the ar$e-of-trailer (Australia) ... and yes I have a pair of Ender 3 pro's

                  I have just bought these... so the wait begins

                  Click image for larger version

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                  Been there done that. That spoke threader has a bit of a steep learning curve. I repurposed a few sets of spokes but I will not do it again. I isn't worth the trouble. It may come in handy in an emergency though.

                  There must be someone who does spokes oneline down under.

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                    #10
                    So calfee, what was the length of your spokes?

                    I just like to do as much stuff as I can for myself, rather than have to depend on other people. I am sure there are people near me (not bike shops LOL) who can make spokes, but I would rather be self sufficient and make them myself. Especially because I am unsure of the length of the spokes required, I can keep adding thread until they are correct... i reckon I only will need about 10 spokes to work out the correct length, then I can make them exactly and write down the measurements for the next wheel.

                    I just have an old set of forks mounted for a truing stand and I will set up the rear wheel in the frame to find the correct dish.

                    Those prices are in Australian micro-dollars... which at the moment is about 71c US (usually about the same as the Canuck-buck Click image for larger version  Name:	Canada2.gif Views:	0 Size:	29.0 KB ID:	115613


                    Edit: After asking about the spoke lengths here, I saw the other thread where you said you wouldn't tell. I am hoping you can at least say if your spoke lengths are between 155mm and 175mm so I can have a bit of an indication if the ones I ordered should be about right? If not, I will have the spoke roller and can roll more thread, plus I have some longer and shorter nipples coming to assist with 'adjustment' Click image for larger version

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                    Last edited by Calcifer; 10-09-2020, 02:07 AM.

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                      #11
                      If you already have a fork set up as the start of a truing stand I would look at 3d printing the caliper part from this design. I wasn't going to build the rest of the stand like his but like the caliper bit. That is how the pro stands work and I think is a very useful feature to have both sides move as the same time. You can just keep creeping it in as you get closer and closer to true without worrying if you are turning both sides at the same rate and staying centered.

                      GENERAL This is a centering-stand for bicycles (https://youtu.be/lWbWG2VxNOA). Good ones are very expensive and I thought to help me and others by building one on my own. I'm using the self-centering gears from Catarina Mota (Helical Gears / https://www.thingiverse.com/thing:1339). Feel free to improve the Design: https://github.com/VirToReal/Centering-Stand-for-Bicycle/ Its fully customizable with the help of parameters in OpenSCAD. The Thingiverse-Customizer wont work here, because the "gears_helical.scad" must be in the same directory of the "Zentrierstaender.scad". Simply download them or clone from the Git-Hub Link. CONSTRUCTING Add the Parameters to fit the size of your wheel. You can be clumsy with that, because the turquoise colored rods in the OpenScad-Preview are threaded-rods and can be easily adjusted to your needed distances. Because of that, better give some more than having to less at the end. The variable "printmode" help you switch between OpenSCAD-Preview and Printmode. The Preview shows your Adjustments on the Parameters. The "printmode = true" with it's following variables will prepare a print-ready layout of your parametered Structures. The length of each (not printable) Threaded-Rod will be "echoed" in the OpenSCAD-Console. They can be cut in exact that length. Following things have to be considered while building: RIM-GRABBER: All other small holes can be drilled up to 4mm for 20mm long M4 Screws to assemble the whole Rim-Grabber altogether. You have to pull a shell with the length of 10.15mm inside the two gears The Diameter of the shell should match the size of appr. 5-5.9mm, it doesn't have to be exact that size, tolerance to the Hole in the Gear is desirable. You have to drill up the Hole in the Gears up to appr. 6mm too, because your printer won't work that exactly. For Example: I used 2x 3mm² end sleeves which fits perfectly. There must fit a 3mm Screw inside that shell to fix these two gears together with fewer tolerances. Be sure the screws just fix the shell with the other two structures (cap/baseplate), not the gears! Some grease will help, too! The two arms of the Grabber should touch in the center before mounting. You can rotate them altogether to fix them afterwards. Just be sure they're in the right teeth of the gear. ITS IMPORTANT THAT THESE GEARS HAVE NO TOLERANCES TO EACH OTHER. The two big holes are for the Threaded Rods. They're also fixing the "cap" on the "baseplate" with the Gears between them. Cut a thread into the two Grabber-Arms for M5-Screws and place some inside them. They should look out the structure the same distance. If you failed with assembling the Grabber-Arms correctly, you can adjust here. ALL OTHER PARTS: Not much to consider, just use Nut-Traps if there are one. Washers may prevent the plastic from damage. Locknuts on some points may help against self adjusting. The OpenSCAD Preview with "printmode = false" may explain everything to you. USING Consider following things before start working with this tool: Be sure to tighten the Axis by clamping them in with the two Impeller-Holder. You have to measure in your Rim first before start working on it. You're able to rearrange the "Rim-Grabber" on the Threaded Rod for this. If all Threaded Rods are tightened, the whole Structures may move during work on your rim, but they'll always move back in they're original position. The position will stay the same even after reinserting the rim after removal. You'll detect the wrong position by the sound when the rim touches one of the screws. Measuring right at the Rim-Grabber makes it easy to adjust the spokelength. Always Adjust 3 spokes before/after the one with the strongest swing to get a smoother result. You're also be able to add a metal-plate to detect runouts of the rim. Just use the upper two screws of the Rim-Grabber to mount one.

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                        #12
                        Thanks Eldo... I might make one of those up. I see there is a few different designs as well....

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                          #13
                          Originally posted by Calcifer View Post
                          So calfee, what was the length of your spokes?

                          I just like to do as much stuff as I can for myself, rather than have to depend on other people. I am sure there are people near me (not bike shops LOL) who can make spokes, but I would rather be self sufficient and make them myself. Especially because I am unsure of the length of the spokes required, I can keep adding thread until they are correct... i reckon I only will need about 10 spokes to work out the correct length, then I can make them exactly and write down the measurements for the next wheel.

                          I just have an old set of forks mounted for a truing stand and I will set up the rear wheel in the frame to find the correct dish.

                          Those prices are in Australian micro-dollars... which at the moment is about 71c US (usually about the same as the Canuck-buck Click image for larger version Name:	Canada2.gif Views:	0 Size:	29.0 KB ID:	115613


                          Edit: After asking about the spoke lengths here, I saw the other thread where you said you wouldn't tell. I am hoping you can at least say if your spoke lengths are between 155mm and 175mm so I can have a bit of an indication if the ones I ordered should be about right? If not, I will have the spoke roller and can roll more thread, plus I have some longer and shorter nipples coming to assist with 'adjustment' Click image for larger version

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                          The spokes were usually 163mm plus or minus a little depending on hub width and rim differences. I use a cross one pattern with 26 inch rims and a radial pattern on 24 inch or less rims.

                          I bought this guy's book. https://www.wheelpro.co.uk/wheelbuilding/book.php It is cheap enough for $12 US and he includes plans for a wooden truing stand which works really well if you pluck the spokes to check the tension. On hub builds I will tap the spokes to see if they sound the same.

                          I like sapim strong spokes. They are a single butted spoke. 13Ga at the j bend and 14 ga at the nipple.



                          I have also used 13Ga sapim leader for hub builds. They make two different nipples for the 13Ga. The standard one will fit a 12 ga drilled rim and the special one will fit a 14 ga drilled rim which are more common. I built one hub with a QS -205 50mm motor that the spoke holes on the hub were kind of large so I used 12Ga spokes and brass washers on the J bend. https://www.sapim.be/tools/washers

                          Those sapim washers won't fit 12Ga spoke but I found some slightly larger one on Amazon.

                          The late Sheldon Brown has the best bicycle web sight around and a huge article on wheel building. https://www.sheldonbrown.com/wheelbuild.html

                          Here is a 20 inch front for a KMX trike that I have. It is radial laced on one side and cross 3 on the other

                          Click image for larger version

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                          I did the same on my latest trike an Hp velotechnik only I reduced the cross to one or two, I can't remember.

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                            #14
                            Awesome, thanks mate.... . Now I just have to hurry up and wait for the slow boat from China

                            Wow, that is a nice looking spoke pattern... most of the wheels I have here are 3 cross, I will probably just do the same.

                            Calfee, I noticed in your other thread, you found that good tire (Maxxis Mamoth) and it made your bike run smoother and more efficient... unfortunately, here in Australia, the cheapest I can get those tires is $AU140, which is twice the price of a car tire, so that is a big ask to buy a pair of them... my question is, is the cool fatbike look with the 4" wide tires a good thing to strive for? Or is it realistically better just to stick with the normal rims with larger tires?


                            I have a pair of Kenda 2.35 small block tires that I will put on my Voilamart motor wheel and run them until my other stuff arrives, the Kenda tires were only $AU32 each... so, really, what I am asking, is the fat tires much better than normal size (ride quality) ... about the same as usual rims? or look great but fat tires are more challenging/not as good?


                            I guess it is really a case of 'whatever floats your goat' ... the fatbike tires sure look cool... I just need to source some cheaper tires Click image for larger version

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                            I am just asking for your and others opinions while I am waiting for my stuff to arrive

                            Click image for larger version

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                              #15
                              My first build was an Electra cruiser with 26" "balloon" tires. I put a BBSHD on it. Here is the thread https://electricbike.com/forum/forum...lectra-cruiser I don't expect anyone to read it because it is 6 pages long. Anyway that bike has the same size tires that you are dealing with. I started a separate thread when I switched to Schwalbe Big Apple tires. I think you will find that thread interesting.

                              Well I finally got a flat. It was no big deal because the tire was flat in the shed before the ride. An hour later the leak was still a mystery so I went out

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