All-terrain electric scooter build

This all-terrain electric scooter can destroy the speed limit in a school zone without even trying. [Ben Katz] built from the ground-up and did an amazing job of documenting the journey.

He strated by redesigning the suspension of a plain old kick-scooter to use these large inflatable wheels. This includes a suspension system that helps cushion the rider from the bumps of an uneven driving surface. The increased deck height leaves plenty of room for the locomotive parts. You can see the three cylinders mounted near the rear wheel. Those are the motors, connected to a single drive shaft with a gear box which [Ben] built. The drive shaft powers the rear wheel via chain drive. Batteries are housed in the rectangular enclosure in front of the motors.

Don’t miss the video after the break. [Ben] takes the thing on and off-road, averaging 15 MPH while topping out at 24!

Comments

  1. B says:

    “to use these large inflatable wheels. This includes a suspension system that helps cushion the rider from the bumps of an uneven driving surface.”

    Well, judging from the video, that mission pretty much failed, both on switching to inflatable wheels, and putting in a suspension system.

    I’m guessing the wheels are overinflated, and the suspension doesn’t have enough spring force for his weight and is bottomed out. Or it has too much, and isn’t moving at all.

    32mm-wide tires are enough for a very smooth ride on a bike…that should be a hint…

    • fusenn says:

      Actually it\’s more likely just that he attached the camera to the scooter instead of to himself/his helmet.

      Take any average good full suspension mountain bike and you\’d have the same jerky video if you attached the camera to the handlebars.

      • Ben says:

        Exactly. The video was filmed by my phone’s camera, which was attached to the steering column with a holder made out of an old blackberry holster bolted to the clamp from a bike reflector. Actually riding the scooter isn’t any where close to as rough as it looks on the video.

        I’ll post another video as soon as I make a body mounted camera holder.

        Also, thanks for the article, Hackaday!

  2. rohit says:

    Awesome!

  3. gene says:

    Geez what did you expect video from a steady cam it is on a dirt trail out in the woods…

  4. John says:

    Well done!

  5. mrb says:

    Ben,
    As a high school engineering teacher, I must say this is very impressive work and documentation. I wish more of my students had your skills and enthusiasm. What got you started in these types of projects and where are you headed for college?

    • Ben says:

      Thanks! I’m not sure exactly what got me started, as I’ve been taking things apart and building things for as long as I can remember. Being part of my high school’s robotics team has definitely made me interested in more mechatronics type projects like this one though. I will be starting at MIT this fall.

      • Matt Corby says:

        I have to say I was amazed to see such a young rider in the pics. I hope you pursue a career in engineering, we need more people like you. So many just go to school to do the minimum required to get their degree, and have no real passion for engineering, and can’t really come up with creative solutions to problems. BTW keep documenting this stuff, when it comes time to get a job don’t be afraid to show it. I can tell you from experience that if you have a portfolio with pics and videos (especially stuff like this) you will have your choice of jobs way before you graduate.

  6. xorpunk says:

    needs tubular steel or thick tubular aluminum instead of cut plates bolted together. This is a quality work IMO though

    The maker could easily use tubular and sale kits and make nice profit per-unit.. This is better than most out there because of clean control and motor implementation and suspension..

  7. Richard Mathie says:

    Wow, if ever there was a website to make you feel inadequate about your self, its this guys! From having a look around I get the impression he has just been accepted to MIT or is a first year, so I guess that makes him 19? and yet he has already completed an impressive array of projects with a high degree of technical skill, and finish. Its like he was born with a wrench in one hand and a soldering iron in the other……nothing short of a genius.

  8. EccentricElectron says:

    Awesome build, brilliant write up – great work. Really useful to see the bits that didn’t work and had to be refined – especially around steering, suspension and drive train.

  9. johndavid400 says:

    … impressive and well-done. BTW, this is the tree-climbing robot guy from last year:

    http://hackaday.com/tag/tree-climbing-robot/

  10. Mike says:

    I’m an engineer and your work is well done. Best of luck at MIT. I am an Illini.

    Mike

  11. bob says:

    this reminds me of evil dead

    and is very cool

  12. Jeff Ballard says:

    To the maker:

    I notice in your pictures your aluminum angle, and aluminum “U” or what I call channel. Looks to be all “architectural” aluminum or 6063, if i recall 6063 is about a 3rd of the strength of 6061 and is a very gummy aluminum to work with.

    I can tell that it is architectural only because the inside and outside corners have no fillets. This type of aluminum is not made for structural use, but for cosmetic use.

    Even still I really like your project and have book marked it due to liking part of your implementation.

    As is you have a very nice project, if you revised it and rebuilt it using what you have learned it would be an incredible project!

  13. Ben says:

    I’ve updated the post on my site with a helmet cam video. It covers the same route as the previous one, but is much smoother:

    The chain arrangement still needs some refinement to stop the chain slipping off on large impacts, and I managed to burn out two of the CIM motors by going full throttle up a long steep hill.

  14. Thomas Lewis says:

    he has a nice project going,adding more travel to the suspension,chain tensioner with guides or switch to belt drive.As suggested a better grade of aluminum or some 80/20 sourced from EBAY.

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