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Guy Builds Himself an e-Bike With Washing Machine Motor, Able to Do 68 MPH

The ongoing health crisis with everything it brought different into our life, including the need for social distancing and avoidance of enclosed, crowded spaces, has led to an unexpected and much welcome boost in sales of two-wheelers, both electric and conventional.
Homemade e-bike with washing machine motor can hit 110 kph (68 mph) 6 photos
Photo: reddit / Jimmiecraftguy
The Yamaha Civante is an e-bike for fitness-focused ridersThe Yamaha Civante is an e-bike for fitness-focused ridersThe Yamaha Civante is an e-bike for fitness-focused ridersThe Yamaha Civante is an e-bike for fitness-focused ridersThe Yamaha Civante is an e-bike for fitness-focused riders
That said, electric two-wheelers still come with restrictive prices, especially considering another negative that came with the crisis: unemployment. So here’s what you could describe as a classic example of have will, will travel. Or, better said, have skills, will e-bike.

One future electrician, going by the name Jimmiecraftguy on reddit and RPK R5 on YouTube, built himself an electric bicycle out of a 20-year bike and parts from a washing machine. That’s not even the most important part of the build, since conversion kits are widely available: he was able to get the thing to do 68 mph (110 kph).

Jimmiecraftguy posted a photo of his custom bike on reddit a couple of weeks ago, saying he would have an update picture in a month’s time. He also chatted with other redditors and dished out the details of the project, like how he had a brushless DC motor laying around from an LG washing machine and didn’t want it to go to waste, so he came up with the idea to turn his old bike electric.

The motor alone cost some €90 ($102) and came free of charge, so why miss the chance of putting it to use? He drove power to the rear wheel and included a freewheel, so the motor operates without pedaling. All electronics and mounts are custom made.

The motor originally ran on 1,100 volts but because he doesn’t “want a top speed of 150km/h [93 mph]” and doesn’t “want to die anytime soon,” it now runs on 48 or 50 volts. That said, he did take the bike up to 110 kph (68 mph) to see if he could, damaged his rims from braking, cooked his lead acid batteries and crapped his pants in the process. Now that he knows he can, he won’t be doing it again.

The electrician says he still has work to do on batteries before he can even consider being close to finishing the project. He will also change the brakes. Once his post on reddit went viral, he posted a video with more details on the bike. The second video below shows that he was already working on his bike at the end of last year, and that he could easily do 65 kph (40 mph) on it.

In case you’re wondering, no, this isn’t legal in Europe, the place this guy seems to be from: any motorized two-wheeler going over 25 kph (15.5 mph) requires a license.

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About the author: Elena Gorgan
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Elena has been writing for a living since 2006 and, as a journalist, she has put her double major in English and Spanish to good use. She covers automotive and mobility topics like cars and bicycles, and she always knows the shows worth watching on Netflix and friends.
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