Hi everybody, I hope you’re all well!
I’m Jonny, I live in the South East of the UK and I’ve been on the forum for a fair few months, joining in on conversations, but I’ve also been building this board in between.
Months of research, saving money, buying bits that were scattered throughout Europe, learning to solder again (having attended electronics classes years ago) and having the last two weeks off work to finish everything has led to the build you see here!
(Quick note: 2x Zippy 8000mAh 3S Lipos (6S) with a single 5065 motor, ridden for nearly an hour over 5 miles (a few high speed bursts and hill climbs) will leave you with 65% battery ;-))
I went for the Lush Machine 3D deck as I loved the look of the shape, the mould had taken two years of development by the guys at Lush to produce and they’re based up in Bristol here in the UK - a city very famous for skateboarding.
This video of a team rider sliding the board had me sold as well!
Originally I went with Paris trucks to go with the Alien Drive System 50mm single motor mount kit…
…But soon discovered that I would have to spend ages filing the trucks to get the mount shim to sit right… to allow the belt alignment to be spot-on. I then realised why Calibre trucks are widely used - the profile lends itself perfectly to motor mounts. Fortunately the ADS motor mount only needed the shim replacing with the Calibre-shaped alternative, so I ordered that and the Calibre setup was complete - much happier!
The Alien Power System 5070 motor that I purchased at the same time as the ADS mount ended up making some strange clicking noises before I’d even wired it up.
Bruno @ Alien has said he’ll take a look at it, so I’ll be shipping that back to him soon, I’m sure it’s an anomaly. In the meantime, I ordered a 5065 270kv motor and I’m super happy with it! The three motor wires were very short and thin, so I merged them into some 10AWG wire and that allowed me to trail the connection back to the enclosure to the ESC.
To start with, I honestly wasn’t sure what ESC to use, but through email conversation with Jenso from E-TOXX, he recommended the Hobbywing 8BL150 (150A) as I only wanted to run 6S for this first build. It was the best decision as the ESC is super easy to program (with the optional programming card), it’s waterproof (without the fan mounted) and has performed flawlessly so far - it hasn’t got hot or anything, even after climbing some properly steep hills. It can only handle up to 6S, so if I decide to go 8S or more, then of course a VESC will be added to the board!
To compliment the ESC, Jenso also sent me a link to the popular micro remote, which you can buy from Aliexpress for very little money (shipped). Great experience buying from Aliexpress for the first time, too. I believe there’s a group buy for these on the forum at the moment? So if you’re looking to get one, you might be able to save yourself some money taking part in that.
The enclosure had me searching for weeks to find something suitable. Then I found a company here in the South of the UK that produces a range of water-tight plastic cases with hinged lids with security flaps - perfect! I wanted a hinged top to take the batteries in and out as fast as possible. I purchased two of the smaller ones to start with (one for the batteries and series harness and one for the ESC), they turned out to be too small and awkward for the batteries and harness, so I went with their second to last largest case, which turned out to be exactly what I needed. There’s even space for a second ESC if needed. The case connects to the board using 6 pronged ‘captive’ T Nuts and matching allen screws.
As I mentioned above, I’ve spent the last two weeks soldering everything: 10AWG wire, XT90 and 4mm HXT connectors, burning myself with the soldering iron (only twice!) and working out how to mount everything.
If you’re new to soldering, don’t waste your money on a 40W soldering iron, get an 80W iron as a minimum. Also, a couple of soldering tools like this from Hobbyking or eBay… Solder connectors joined together, as in the male and female parts joined - that way you won’t make the metal parts melt out of the plastic.
And that’s about it. Below are some additional photos of the build!
Stickers produced by me as that’s part of what I do for a living
I managed to install the Anti-Spark loop key in between one of the ‘supports’ within the case. I used a glue gun to hold the XT90 female part of the connector in place, works well!
The deck has these awesome pipework/cable graphics to compliment the Machine 3D deck name - absolutely perfect considering it’s now an electric longboard!
Initial thoughts after riding the board for a couple of days…
It’s become apparent that I need larger wheels (the 80mm Kegels are great, but 83mm or 97mm wheels will make rolling even better and should help even more with the really bad pavements (sidewalks) and roads we have here in the South of the UK. I may also change the gearing and upgrade to a 15mm belt, we’ll see.
Lastly, huge thanks to everybody that I’ve mentioned, also to everybody who’s on this forum (and to @onloop for starting it) - without you guys/girls this place wouldn’t be what it is, it’s utter motivation and inspiration for people to build something that will make them smile for miles!!
Any questions, ask away!