Another project! Weird Italian Electric bicycle

Discussion in 'Gearhead Garage' started by tweakmonkey, Jun 22, 2009.

  1. tweakmonkey

    tweakmonkey Webmaster Staff Member

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    I picked this up earlier today on Craigslist for $140.
    [​IMG]

    It's a Prima L'eco, Italian bicycle from a few years back. It may sound expensive for a weird bicycle, but it's electric! Pedal assist, does about 18 MPH and the battery will last 15-20 miles at that speed. These did retail for about $700-1000 new when they were made, and used they seem to fetch about $400, but this one has one major issue... it's missing the battery and charger. The rest of the e-gear is intact and wired up to go.

    More pics will come soon, but here's some others:
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    It has a luggage rack, unique planetary gearset in the rear, brake / tail lamp, and head lamp. I have priced out the battery and it looks like I'll be wiring 3x 12v 10AH lead batteries in at $27/each (the NiMH and LiIon routes were $300+ total). I also need to fix the rear shifting. I already removed the generator for the lamps because it was dragging and didn't make sense considering it's electric... but it rides great and should make an interesting project.

    It's late for now, but I'll post more about it soon.
  2. 86mcss

    86mcss Devouring your Soul

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    ohhhhh dan. lol
  3. Coleman

    Coleman fresh off the corner

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    Oh hey cool man I bet a nice sun dress would look so adorable with that.
  4. MSP

    MSP Haunting a dead forum...

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    Ha! When gas was north of 4 bucks a gallon I absolutely looked at these for commuting purposes. It's not that I can't pedal the 15 miles to work, or even that I don't have the time, it was I couldn't afford to show up dripping with sweat. These definitely help in that category.

    Anyway, any idea how much the batteries are? I'm guessing you can use a standard 12 volt, not proprietary or anything?
  5. jake

    jake Vagabond

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    Do you know how I know your gay?

    Pastel colored electric bike. lol
  6. -=Lurker=-

    -=Lurker=- **BANNED**

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    Needs some tassles on the handle-bar ends. :)
  7. tweakmonkey

    tweakmonkey Webmaster Staff Member

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    :lol: I agree, I just found a couple nice ones on Ebay to match it.

    Yep, the lead batteries I think I'm going to use are $17 each (plus $10 shipping each) for a total of about $81. They aren't proprietary, just three 12v, 10AH batteries that'll be wired together to give me the same power and capacity as the stock ones. I haven't figured out the charger situation yet, but my roommate assures me it's simple.

    I'm a total rookie when it comes to anything electrical, so this should be a good learning experience for me.

    Mine's tan! :D I'll fix that with black and red paint, NASCAR stickers, and beef entrails hanging from the rear wheel.
  8. gB dAvId x

    gB dAvId x thats what she said

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    Is your porches even drivable yet?
  9. tweakmonkey

    tweakmonkey Webmaster Staff Member

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    Yes, I've driven it almost every day since I bought it. :)
  10. MSP

    MSP Haunting a dead forum...

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    Yeah, charging the batteries is no big deal at all. A 12 volt system can be charged with a $15-20 charger from Wal-Mart or similar. It's just like a lawn mower battery. In fact if shipping wouldn't be so expensive I've got an extra you could have.

    PS - Could you post a link to the batteries you're buying? I'm still really interested in doing something like this just for fun.
  11. tweakmonkey

    tweakmonkey Webmaster Staff Member

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  12. MovingTarget

    MovingTarget New Member

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    That's HAWT!
  13. ninefivezero

    ninefivezero infinite resolution

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    I can't tell if hipsters would think that is cool or not.
  14. gB dAvId x

    gB dAvId x thats what she said

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    No updated pictures!?!?!? :confused:
  15. tweakmonkey

    tweakmonkey Webmaster Staff Member

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    There are tons of updates on my thread. I'll post more of the wheels with new lugnuts and stuff once I paint the bearing caps. The carpet's ordered... should be in soon.
  16. Jackalope

    Jackalope NNNNEEERRRRDDDSSSSS!!!!!!

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  17. gB dAvId x

    gB dAvId x thats what she said

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    Sweet, that sounds exciting. How much does carpet run for a Porsche?
  18. tweakmonkey

    tweakmonkey Webmaster Staff Member

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    I paid $360 for the whole set, that's original German style heavy duty pieces, and it's in like 12-14 different sections. Each one has a vinyl liner, too. PRetty neat stuff.. I'll show some pics when it arrives. You're posting in the wrong thread! :lol:
  19. hans5849

    hans5849 Serious as a heart attack

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    You know how I know you're gay?
  20. tweakmonkey

    tweakmonkey Webmaster Staff Member

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    Look what came today:
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    6.7 pounds each. I don't know when I'll mess with this thing again but I need to figure out a wiring plan (and maybe a quick release) and charger. Plus I need to fix the shifter.

    Most electric bicycles cost around $1000 new, and I have yet to see one under $400 used even. So this should be a pretty good deal once I have it up and running.
  21. mistawiskas

    mistawiskas kik n a and takin names

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    I would so love to have a pet project like that. Not a bad deal on the batts, but you'll buy at least three sets of those to one set of liIon. and the liIon will charge faster/last longer with the proper charger mods.
  22. MSP

    MSP Haunting a dead forum...

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    You know Dan, we're going to insist on a video of you riding that thing around. I'm thinking a funny hat is probably in order too.
  23. tweakmonkey

    tweakmonkey Webmaster Staff Member

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    Definitely, I understand. :D

    Got the charger a couple days ago.. it's a standard 36v 2A charger. I'll take some pics once I start wiring things. Way too busy this week for it though...

    Maybe, but these should last a year+, I doubt I'll have it that long even... :) And those LiIons get soooo expensive.
  24. Torx

    Torx Indigenous Nudist

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    cool thread, cool bike, i hop eyou can get this thing running properly.

    i guess you ruled out rechargable electric drill packs?
    i wouldve figured out a way to wire in two or three 12v-18v packs
  25. tweakmonkey

    tweakmonkey Webmaster Staff Member

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    Those drill packs just don't have the capacity needed. They'd supply enough voltage but only last like a mile probably.