OP
UTC

Member
VBB
Joined: UTC
Posts: 34
Location: Sydney, Australia
 
Member
VBB
Joined: UTC
Posts: 34
Location: Sydney, Australia
UTC quote
Just curious what people think about converting a classic Vespa scooter to electric. I've been converting one for the past year or so and have been thinking that there might be a lot of people who love them the way they are and think that this is sacrilege. Anyway would be interested in your opinions.

Cheers,
Andrew
@koenig_blues avatar
UTC

Veni, Vidi, Posti
a not so normal vbb2 '64, a weirdo vbx '86, a not so normal pts100 '82 and a yellow sunshine '74 sprint
Joined: UTC
Posts: 5801
Location: Indo
 
Veni, Vidi, Posti
@koenig_blues avatar
a not so normal vbb2 '64, a weirdo vbx '86, a not so normal pts100 '82 and a yellow sunshine '74 sprint
Joined: UTC
Posts: 5801
Location: Indo
UTC quote
pics pics Razz emoticon
UTC

Hooked
78 P200 05 PX150
Joined: UTC
Posts: 214
Location: Fort Collins, CO
 
Hooked
78 P200 05 PX150
Joined: UTC
Posts: 214
Location: Fort Collins, CO
UTC quote
Just saw this the other day. I didn't see anything on their website. Maybe someone who speaks German can get more details.

Worb5 Electric PX

Chuck
@jsharpphoto avatar
UTC

Molto Verboso
1974 Vespa Sprint Veloce, 1963 VBB 180 Custom
Joined: UTC
Posts: 1380
Location: Dallas, TX
 
Molto Verboso
@jsharpphoto avatar
1974 Vespa Sprint Veloce, 1963 VBB 180 Custom
Joined: UTC
Posts: 1380
Location: Dallas, TX
UTC quote
just buy this kit. I think it's a bolt on, plug and play swap.

http://soundspeedscooters.com/electric_vespa_conversion
UTC

Member
Joined: UTC
Posts: 40
Location: New York State
 
Member
Joined: UTC
Posts: 40
Location: New York State
UTC quote
This post has been removed
⚠️ Last edited by dancinonwater22 on UTC; edited 1 time
@scooterraton avatar
UTC

Ossessionato
2 - Many
Joined: UTC
Posts: 3164
Location: Boca Raton, Florida
 
Ossessionato
@scooterraton avatar
2 - Many
Joined: UTC
Posts: 3164
Location: Boca Raton, Florida
UTC quote
NO!
@sterling avatar
UTC

Enthusiast
et3 & primavera
Joined: UTC
Posts: 63
Location: cambridge MA
 
Enthusiast
@sterling avatar
et3 & primavera
Joined: UTC
Posts: 63
Location: cambridge MA
UTC quote
Don't do it Electric vehicles are crappy
@jamesjohn avatar
UTC

Ossessionato
1970 Vespa Rally 180
Joined: UTC
Posts: 4145
Location: Denton Tx.
 
Ossessionato
@jamesjohn avatar
1970 Vespa Rally 180
Joined: UTC
Posts: 4145
Location: Denton Tx.
UTC quote
if the guy wants to do something to his own scooter thats his deal. save a vespa sure, but saying what can and cant be done is childish.

i would support any use of vintage steel to continue to have a usefulness in this world of buy,use,trash. you have to crack an egg to make an omelet.
@smallstate avatar
UTC

Molto Verboso
'66 Sears Allstate 788.94370 '65 Vespa V9A1T
Joined: UTC
Posts: 1236
Location: Roseville, MI
 
Molto Verboso
@smallstate avatar
'66 Sears Allstate 788.94370 '65 Vespa V9A1T
Joined: UTC
Posts: 1236
Location: Roseville, MI
UTC quote
unless it is an SS90 or an SS180, i have no problem with converting a vintage vespa to electric or a 4 stroke or a spaceship.
@xantufrog avatar
UTC

Moderibbit
1980 P200E - "Old Rusty", 1976 ET3 Primavera
Joined: UTC
Posts: 8892
Location: Atlanta, GA
 
Moderibbit
@xantufrog avatar
1980 P200E - "Old Rusty", 1976 ET3 Primavera
Joined: UTC
Posts: 8892
Location: Atlanta, GA
UTC quote
smallstate wrote:
i have no problem with converting a vintage vespa to ... a spaceship.
Once my ET2 becomes "vintage" I'm so making it into a space ship. Those Jetsons lines need to be put to work
@steve avatar
UTC

Ossessionato
'06 Vespa LX150, '07 Suzuki Burgman 400, '05 Honda Metropolitan
Joined: UTC
Posts: 3149
Location: Avon, Ohio (25 miles west of Cleveland)
 
Ossessionato
@steve avatar
'06 Vespa LX150, '07 Suzuki Burgman 400, '05 Honda Metropolitan
Joined: UTC
Posts: 3149
Location: Avon, Ohio (25 miles west of Cleveland)
UTC quote
This sounds like a great idea! I can't wait to yank that stinky, oily motor out of my SS180 and take it to the scrap yard to be melted down.

I assume the electric motor fits where the gas one is now. But where do I store the cord? Is there a self retracting extension cord that goes where my spare tire is supposed to be? What happens when I need to go farther than the length of the extension cord?

Can I put a pet carrier where the gas tank is now?









Clown emoticon
@joshzingzing avatar
UTC

Veni, Vidi, Posti
px200 cutdown,px180,px150. Puch SR. Puch scooterette
Joined: UTC
Posts: 5109
Location: west aus
 
Veni, Vidi, Posti
@joshzingzing avatar
px200 cutdown,px180,px150. Puch SR. Puch scooterette
Joined: UTC
Posts: 5109
Location: west aus
UTC quote
it is a nice looking bike 8)

i wouldnt do it

would be fun to hoover around on though
@scooterraton avatar
UTC

Ossessionato
2 - Many
Joined: UTC
Posts: 3164
Location: Boca Raton, Florida
 
Ossessionato
@scooterraton avatar
2 - Many
Joined: UTC
Posts: 3164
Location: Boca Raton, Florida
UTC quote
jamesjohn wrote:
if the guy wants to do something to his own scooter thats his deal. save a vespa sure, but saying what can and cant be done is childish.
Dude...the threat is titled Would you convert a classic Vespa to electric? That is asking a question of the respondent. The OP is soliciting opinions.

would I convert a classic Vespa to electric?

HELL NO!


And really...what kind of responses do you expect in a vintage/classic forum?
@smallstate avatar
UTC

Molto Verboso
'66 Sears Allstate 788.94370 '65 Vespa V9A1T
Joined: UTC
Posts: 1236
Location: Roseville, MI
 
Molto Verboso
@smallstate avatar
'66 Sears Allstate 788.94370 '65 Vespa V9A1T
Joined: UTC
Posts: 1236
Location: Roseville, MI
UTC quote
i guess the way i see it, is that if you are going to convert any scooter to electric vintage is better. better because if you have to look at something every day, it should be vintage. vintage scooters are just plain better looking. vespas are not so scarce that i would have any issue with it. an SS90 or an SS180 would be a huge waste, but a VNB or something like that... why not?
@dr_zoidberg avatar
UTC

Ossessionato
Ducati Scrambler 800 Nightshift
Joined: UTC
Posts: 3418
Location: Bromsgrove, UK
 
Ossessionato
@dr_zoidberg avatar
Ducati Scrambler 800 Nightshift
Joined: UTC
Posts: 3418
Location: Bromsgrove, UK
UTC quote
In my opinion, a proper Classic (as in rare and desirable) Vespa shouldn't be converted to electric if it can be preserved.

Fortunately not all vintage Vespas are Classics so if you have the time and ability to convert one to electric then why not?

I'd love to see the end result.
UTC

Enthusiast
2006 GT200L,1962 vbb, 1964 vnb 1965 allstate 2004 stella 2004 road king
Joined: UTC
Posts: 84
Location: Long Island NY
 
Enthusiast
2006 GT200L,1962 vbb, 1964 vnb 1965 allstate 2004 stella 2004 road king
Joined: UTC
Posts: 84
Location: Long Island NY
UTC quote
How about converting to a modern vespa engine
Has anyone ever heard of an old 1960s vespa converted to a modern vespa engine?
@jeremy_w avatar
UTC

Molto Verboso
79 P200e, 81 100 Sport
Joined: UTC
Posts: 1443
Location: Iowa
 
Molto Verboso
@jeremy_w avatar
79 P200e, 81 100 Sport
Joined: UTC
Posts: 1443
Location: Iowa
UTC quote
I would do this, and I have.




But I'm not going to tell you how I did it...
UTC

Enthusiast
2006 GT200L,1962 vbb, 1964 vnb 1965 allstate 2004 stella 2004 road king
Joined: UTC
Posts: 84
Location: Long Island NY
 
Enthusiast
2006 GT200L,1962 vbb, 1964 vnb 1965 allstate 2004 stella 2004 road king
Joined: UTC
Posts: 84
Location: Long Island NY
UTC quote
why not?...lol
@t5bitza69 avatar
UTC

Veni, Vidi, Posti
T5s
Joined: UTC
Posts: 17005
Location: The West Of Yorkshire ... Gods Country
 
Veni, Vidi, Posti
@t5bitza69 avatar
T5s
Joined: UTC
Posts: 17005
Location: The West Of Yorkshire ... Gods Country
UTC quote
basmati rice
theres probably more t5 lumps in older scoots like the gs over here than in actual t5s
@koenig_blues avatar
UTC

Veni, Vidi, Posti
a not so normal vbb2 '64, a weirdo vbx '86, a not so normal pts100 '82 and a yellow sunshine '74 sprint
Joined: UTC
Posts: 5801
Location: Indo
 
Veni, Vidi, Posti
@koenig_blues avatar
a not so normal vbb2 '64, a weirdo vbx '86, a not so normal pts100 '82 and a yellow sunshine '74 sprint
Joined: UTC
Posts: 5801
Location: Indo
UTC quote
here's a converted but aint electric and still have 2 stroke smell Razz emoticon
INSANE vespa auto 1952
UTC

Hooked
Vespa
Joined: UTC
Posts: 140
Location: Up north
 
Hooked
Vespa
Joined: UTC
Posts: 140
Location: Up north
UTC quote
Something that would be cool, would be to make a sort of hybrid. Not because you want to reduce emissions, but because you want the added power and torque that an electric motor would give you.

A 5-10 hp electric motor in the front hub, coupled with a tuned p200 lump at the rear wheel. Thats really going be quick off the line.

Add some batteries in the front glovebox and sort out if you want the p200 motor to charge the batteries (you need a way more powerfull stator), or you charge it from a power outlet. You'd need to sync the throttle, and figure out a way to limit the initial torque from the electric motor or the front wheel will start spinning right away..

Now that would be cool.


I tested a Vectrix once and was amazed at how small that rear hub motor was. If I remember correct, that thing put out a little under 30 hp, and it sat in the hub of a 12 or 13" rear wheel.
UTC

Member
Joined: UTC
Posts: 40
Location: New York State
 
Member
Joined: UTC
Posts: 40
Location: New York State
UTC quote
This post has been removed
⚠️ Last edited by dancinonwater22 on UTC; edited 1 time
@xantufrog avatar
UTC

Moderibbit
1980 P200E - "Old Rusty", 1976 ET3 Primavera
Joined: UTC
Posts: 8892
Location: Atlanta, GA
 
Moderibbit
@xantufrog avatar
1980 P200E - "Old Rusty", 1976 ET3 Primavera
Joined: UTC
Posts: 8892
Location: Atlanta, GA
UTC quote
I think with regards to vintage scooters, beyond a love of their looks is a love of the sound, the smell, the shifting, and the ability to tinker with the engine.

Electric scooters are nearly silent, odor free, I have yet to see a manual transmission setup like one enjoys on a vintage, and you can't get all greasy trying to keep it alive and squeak more power out of its engine. They have none of the qualities which draw stinky old 2T vintage nuts except the shell of the body. For me the satisfaction of keeping an old scooter on the road isn't about keeping the frame on the road. It's about keeping the engine running... the historic machine on the road.

Electric scooters may be the future. They may be better for the environment. If you are electrically inclined, they will be a fun project to make. Indeed there are tons of pros.

It's not all about the numbers on a sheet or emissions. It's about visceral emotions. People like what they like. Same reason you see resistance to 4Ts in this crowd. It doesn't always make sense. But it doesn't have to. It's just what they like.


All of that said, I think it's a fun idea you have. And electric scooters WILL suck without innovation and drive to make something usable like you have. It will never be practical to leave town on an electric vehicle without people like you in the industry. Good electric vehicles people want will result in the filling out of the infrastructure necessary to make them practical on the road. Kudos and good luck.

Taking what I said above, it's important to remember that even though electric scooters tend to have nothing in common with vintage 2Ts (except potentially the body in your case), it doesn't mean there aren't people who will prefer your machine to the former, or people who will love both. I don't have the money to buy or build one, but I won't discount myself being in that last crowd... I love gadgets!
UTC

Molto Verboso
PX200E X 2
Joined: UTC
Posts: 1934
Location: Lake Monticello
 
Molto Verboso
PX200E X 2
Joined: UTC
Posts: 1934
Location: Lake Monticello
UTC quote
no way
@koenig_blues avatar
UTC

Veni, Vidi, Posti
a not so normal vbb2 '64, a weirdo vbx '86, a not so normal pts100 '82 and a yellow sunshine '74 sprint
Joined: UTC
Posts: 5801
Location: Indo
 
Veni, Vidi, Posti
@koenig_blues avatar
a not so normal vbb2 '64, a weirdo vbx '86, a not so normal pts100 '82 and a yellow sunshine '74 sprint
Joined: UTC
Posts: 5801
Location: Indo
UTC quote
i am a smoke god
before forget, my answer is no

ekhem for truth, call me silly but i addict to 2 stroke smoke the smell the smoke i dont need bigger power nor bigger torque i just want my vintage vespa stay vintage (in other word let it smoke)

ps: i even put 5% to all my vespa so i know for sure it will smoke
OP
UTC

Member
VBB
Joined: UTC
Posts: 34
Location: Sydney, Australia
 
Member
VBB
Joined: UTC
Posts: 34
Location: Sydney, Australia
UTC quote
Wow I'm completely blown away by all the comments! I forgot I had posted on this forum and only just dropped back in. This is exactly the kind of discussion I was hoping for and I completely understand the different points of view, it's great!

I'll try to answer some things and will also put some more info up about the conversion.

dancinonwater22: good luck with your conversion! What stage are you at?

Smorris: yes the motor goes where the engine was. Not sure about a pet carrier but the space where the gas tank was is used for batteries.

Jeremy W: any reason why you're not willing to share how you converted yours?

xantufrog: this one posted by chuckactor has kept the manual transmission. We thought about doing this as well but for various reasons decided to get rid of the clutch and gears. It seemed like a good idea at the time.
OP
UTC

Member
VBB
Joined: UTC
Posts: 34
Location: Sydney, Australia
 
Member
VBB
Joined: UTC
Posts: 34
Location: Sydney, Australia
UTC quote
Here's some info on the scooter:

Chassis: 1967 Vespa 150 (VBB)
Motor: Briggs and Stratton Etek brushed DC motor
Transmission: 2-stage ANSI #40 chain
Speed Controller: Alltrax AXE4834
Batteries: GP Batteries GP30EVLF, 16 cells, 51.2 volts, 1.5kWh
Throttle: Magura 0-5k twist grip

Top Speed: 70km/h estimated
Range: 30km estimated

I started this project with a friend just over a year ago and we are now going through the process of getting it registered. The trickiest bits have been modifying the original swing arm to attach the motor (whilst keeping the original look of the scooter) and working out how to do the throttle. Once it's registered I'll be able to see what the actual top speed is but it already feels like I'll have to reduce the gearing to get up to 70km/h. Also very interested to see what the range is like.
OP
UTC

Member
VBB
Joined: UTC
Posts: 34
Location: Sydney, Australia
 
Member
VBB
Joined: UTC
Posts: 34
Location: Sydney, Australia
UTC quote
One of the first things we did was look at how we could attach the motor to the original swing arm and have it fit under the cowling.

Initially we tried a single-stage transmission with the motor shaft facing out but the drive sprocket would have been quite bit and would have stuck out too far.

We ended up facing the motor in and using a 2-stage transmission which was more complicated but it meant everything would fit and the second stage chain and sprockets are hidden away.

External inline image provided by member with no explanatory text

View of the first set of sprockets and chain.

External inline image provided by member with no explanatory text

Smaller version to reposition the motor.

External inline image provided by member with no explanatory text

Testing with the cowling on.

External inline image provided by member with no explanatory text[/img]
⚠️ Last edited by soyachips on UTC; edited 1 time
OP
UTC

Member
VBB
Joined: UTC
Posts: 34
Location: Sydney, Australia
 
Member
VBB
Joined: UTC
Posts: 34
Location: Sydney, Australia
UTC quote
After working out where the motor was meant to go, we then played around with different designs for the position of the counter/jack shaft, how to hold the bearings, how to adjust chain tension, etc. before getting it fabricated.

For a while we thought about doing the work (or some of the work) ourselves but we didn't have the right tools or expertise to do it properly. In the end we got Extreme Creations (http://www.extremecreations.com.au/) who customise motorcycles to fabricate the motor mount. Although it was a bit expensive, it's the most important mechanical part of the whole conversion and I'd rather have peace of mind than something go wrong at 70km/h! The quality of their work is excellent and I'd highly recommend them ... if you live in Sydney, Australia!

We supplied CAD drawings which were used to machine the two aluminium plates. One of the plates is welded to the swing arm whilst the other is bolted on to form a box structure. We used 16mm aluminium which seems a bit overkill but the bearings are recessed into them.

Machining the inside plate that the motor attaches to.

External inline image provided by member with no explanatory text

External inline image provided by member with no explanatory text

The slots are to adjust the tension of the chain.

External inline image provided by member with no explanatory text

Machining the outside plate.

External inline image provided by member with no explanatory text

External inline image provided by member with no explanatory text

External inline image provided by member with no explanatory text

The whole swing arm and motor weighs less than the original ICE and no more oil or petrol to worry about!

External inline image provided by member with no explanatory text
⚠️ Last edited by soyachips on UTC; edited 1 time
OP
UTC

Member
VBB
Joined: UTC
Posts: 34
Location: Sydney, Australia
 
Member
VBB
Joined: UTC
Posts: 34
Location: Sydney, Australia
UTC quote
While this was going on we had the body cleaned up and painted.

External inline image provided by member with no explanatory text
@jeremy_w avatar
UTC

Molto Verboso
79 P200e, 81 100 Sport
Joined: UTC
Posts: 1443
Location: Iowa
 
Molto Verboso
@jeremy_w avatar
79 P200e, 81 100 Sport
Joined: UTC
Posts: 1443
Location: Iowa
UTC quote
soyachips wrote:
Jeremy W: any reason why you're not willing to share how you converted yours?
I really haven't, I was joking. I'd miss the two stroke exhaust fumes.
OP
UTC

Member
VBB
Joined: UTC
Posts: 34
Location: Sydney, Australia
 
Member
VBB
Joined: UTC
Posts: 34
Location: Sydney, Australia
UTC quote
Putting the new swing arm back into the frame for the first time.

External inline image provided by member with no explanatory text

Wheels back on for the first time in 6 months!

External inline image provided by member with no explanatory text

Off the stand.

External inline image provided by member with no explanatory text

Cowling on.

External inline image provided by member with no explanatory text
⚠️ Last edited by soyachips on UTC; edited 1 time
OP
UTC

Member
VBB
Joined: UTC
Posts: 34
Location: Sydney, Australia
 
Member
VBB
Joined: UTC
Posts: 34
Location: Sydney, Australia
UTC quote
Jeremy W wrote:
I really haven't, I was joking. I'd miss the two stroke exhaust fumes.
Ah sorry my mistake
OP
UTC

Member
VBB
Joined: UTC
Posts: 34
Location: Sydney, Australia
 
Member
VBB
Joined: UTC
Posts: 34
Location: Sydney, Australia
UTC quote
The battery pack is divided into 4 modules with 4 cells in each held together with steel straps. Each module weighs about 5 kg.

External inline image provided by member with no explanatory text

Two of them are under the left cowling along with the 12V accessories battery. The fuses are also here which can be accessed through a door on the cowling.

External inline image provided by member with no explanatory text

External inline image provided by member with no explanatory text

External inline image provided by member with no explanatory text

The other two modules go under the seat where the fuel tank used to be. One of them sits vertically and the other one lies at an angle against the inside wall.

External inline image provided by member with no explanatory text

We made up some aluminium brackets to hold the batteries in place and provide somewhere for the speed controller to sit. The contactor and BMS also go in here so it's a pretty tight fit!

External inline image provided by member with no explanatory text

Final battery locations, test wiring and main circuit fuse.

External inline image provided by member with no explanatory text
⚠️ Last edited by soyachips on UTC; edited 1 time
OP
UTC

Member
VBB
Joined: UTC
Posts: 34
Location: Sydney, Australia
 
Member
VBB
Joined: UTC
Posts: 34
Location: Sydney, Australia
UTC quote
The speed controller sits just above the batteries under the seat.

External inline image provided by member with no explanatory text

External inline image provided by member with no explanatory text

External inline image provided by member with no explanatory text
⚠️ Last edited by soyachips on UTC; edited 1 time
OP
UTC

Member
VBB
Joined: UTC
Posts: 34
Location: Sydney, Australia
 
Member
VBB
Joined: UTC
Posts: 34
Location: Sydney, Australia
UTC quote
The motor is being run CCW which is the opposite to the way it was designed to run. I've read about some people having problems with this, mainly to do with wearing through the brushes faster than normal so I wanted to see what they look like new. Was also curious how difficult it would be to clean it all out.

Brush cover off.

External inline image provided by member with no explanatory text

View of the commutator inside. There's a great video here with a guy from LEMCO motors explaining the design of these type of motors.

External inline image provided by member with no explanatory text

There are 8 brushes with alternating polarities. The brushes are designed for CW rotation. When we first started running the motor CCW it was a bit noisy/squeaky but after a bit of running in it's much quieter.

External inline image provided by member with no explanatory text

Need to make sure they don't wear down too close to the brass? holders.

External inline image provided by member with no explanatory text[/url]
⚠️ Last edited by soyachips on UTC; edited 1 time
OP
UTC

Member
VBB
Joined: UTC
Posts: 34
Location: Sydney, Australia
 
Member
VBB
Joined: UTC
Posts: 34
Location: Sydney, Australia
UTC quote
Wiring diagram.

External inline image provided by member with no explanatory text
⚠️ Last edited by soyachips on UTC; edited 1 time
@jeremy_w avatar
UTC

Molto Verboso
79 P200e, 81 100 Sport
Joined: UTC
Posts: 1443
Location: Iowa
 
Molto Verboso
@jeremy_w avatar
79 P200e, 81 100 Sport
Joined: UTC
Posts: 1443
Location: Iowa
UTC quote
Very impressive work! I figured you were just some dreamer posting a what if question. Not someone with the obvious knowledge and skills to pull something like this off.

Very cool.
OP
UTC

Member
VBB
Joined: UTC
Posts: 34
Location: Sydney, Australia
 
Member
VBB
Joined: UTC
Posts: 34
Location: Sydney, Australia
UTC quote
Thanks but to be honest a bit over a year ago I didn't have the knowledge to do this! There's quite a lot of people doing car and motorbike conversions and a lot of information online which has made this possible. It's definitely not over yet, a bit of playing around with settings and gearing to optimise it all and I really don't know if I'll get the performance and range I'm hoping for.
@smallstate avatar
UTC

Molto Verboso
'66 Sears Allstate 788.94370 '65 Vespa V9A1T
Joined: UTC
Posts: 1236
Location: Roseville, MI
 
Molto Verboso
@smallstate avatar
'66 Sears Allstate 788.94370 '65 Vespa V9A1T
Joined: UTC
Posts: 1236
Location: Roseville, MI
UTC quote
that is really clean work. what kind of range do you think you might get? and what is the projected top speed?
DoubleGood Design banner

Modern Vespa is the premier site for modern Vespa and Piaggio scooters. Vespa GTS300, GTS250, GTV, GT200, LX150, LXS, ET4, ET2, MP3, Fuoco, Elettrica and more.

Buy Me A Coffee
 

Shop on Amazon with Modern Vespa

Modern Vespa is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to amazon.com


All Content Copyright 2005-2024 by Modern Vespa.
All Rights Reserved.


[ Time: 0.0632s ][ Queries: 5 (0.0261s) ][ Debug on ][ 309 ][ Thing One ]