Energy +- Battery

The word “energeia” comes from the Greek. It means work within.

It is very suitable for our need. In the last few years the electric motor has become “mainstream” product according to the press. When we look at production nrs – not really the case. But there is no reason, why we should not benefit from the development of it all – even if we drive/ride the internal combustion engines.  The electric motor has been around a very long time – the problem has been always the energy saving capacity. In other words – the electric motor has not been a problem for a long time now – the issue is the battery.

First issue is the capacity and other is the weight. This applies to high tech motorcycles also. A bigger 1200cc bike or similar, can have a 10+ kg battery installed. With not so many aux devices to run on a bike during off stage – it makes very little sense. Led acid battery is an old friend of ours. It weighs a ton and can take a proper beating and in care of emergency – it can even be rejuiced with proper care. But there are other options. AGM – from many manufacturers – this is a technology update of the conventional battery and now – Lithium battery. The position of the battery is not important – the weight saving is about 40-70% and startup juice is upp by 1/4.

There must be a catch though?

Well, there is. It is expensive. 1,5-5x more expensive than the usual Led acid battery. It is sensitive to cold – IE will not work in snowmobiles etc. Needs a special charger, if You wish to charge on a bench. And last but not least – for adv riders – they tend to fail without a notice. (even if lifetime is a lot longer than the conventional).

For various reasons – I opted to try one on Vugtec ONE. First of all – the weight. Original YTZ14S battery weighs in at around 4kg. The particular lithium unit is 0,9kg. this is pretty good weight saving for the buck. Then there is the shape and size. The battery box on the 990 is located under the belly. Very not suitable for an adventure bike and any bike for that matter. Our solution is to have it under the seat and the new battery fits very well, with minor modifications to the plastic cup. Then there is the CCA. Cold crank Amperage. The LC8 is a known bike to need massive amounts of energy to get up and running. High resistance comes from the engine caracteristics and oils used etc. The old CCA was max 220A  – the new is 260A but bare in mind – the lithium battery is a lot more sensitive to temperature. So in normal “moto” temps we are getting 300++ A for a good startup.

All that goodness – in theory. Anyhow – the money was spent and new battery installed. A little cutout was needed in the box, so that the unit would fit more snug. I also had some spare sheetplastic, so I plasticwelded  a new “wall” for the battery, to make it fit better and perhaps safer. I now have a more usable “toolbox” in there also and the battery is very accessible.

New vs Old

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