Electric Motorcycle DVDs!

FULL VIDEO NOW FREE!!! (January 2018)
To get this information out to the most people, I am now making the complete content of the VIDEO DVD available for free through YouTube! It is the entire 2 hour and 40 minute video, broken down into smaller videos, just as the DVD is broken into chapters. To see the entire video content, please see THIS YOUTUBE VIDEO PLAYLIST.

For the full step-by-step written instructions, with plenty of photos, please visit: Instructables DIY Electric Motorcycle Link

If you like the YouTube videos, please subscribe. If you get anything out of them, please consider a small donation to 300MPG.org at our DONATE page. Producing content like this takes considerable time and effort!

Learn to build your own electric motorcycle with this instructional Two-Disc Set!

BUILD YOUR OWN ELECTRIC MOTORCYCLE contains everything an entry-level builder needs to create their own clean, fun transportation. The Video DVD contains two and a half hours of instruction on motors, motor controllers, batteries, chargers, and design tips and tricks.

*UPDATE* Now available as a streaming ON-DEMAND VIDEO! CLICK HERE.
*THIS VIDEO IS NO LONGER AVAILABLE ON DVD FORMAT, please see streaming or YouTube.*

The DVD-ROM disc contains computer files of the project, including over 600 digital still photos of the entire conversion process, recommended reading list, useful web links, information on controllers, including the Open ReVolt, and motor diagram.

This makes a fantastic summer project! (Or a winter project! Build it in your basement! There’s not gas or oil involved!) And gives a person a way to have a fantastic transportation option!

If you want an electric vehicle, but are concerned about how they might run in the winter, or how it would handle air conditioning, or that you don’t have enough space in the garage for another car….. Then an electric motorcycle is for you!

This set premiered at the Mother Earth News Fair in Seven Springs Pennsylvania, WHERE IT QUICKLY SOLD OUT!

{ 8 trackbacks }

Electric Motorcycle conversion - Page 26 - Fuel Economy, Hypermiling, EcoModding News and Forum - EcoModder.com
September 26, 2011 at 8:20 am
Designing with CAD
September 30, 2011 at 9:58 pm
Learn How to BUILD YOUR OWN ELECTRIC MOTORCYCLE (Video DVD set) - Fuel Economy, Hypermiling, EcoModding News and Forum - EcoModder.com
December 2, 2011 at 9:58 am
Build Your Own Electric Motorcycle on INSTRUCTABLES!
February 13, 2012 at 3:07 pm
“The Clean Energy View” Interview
May 3, 2012 at 2:42 pm
Crashing the Electric Motorcycle
June 30, 2012 at 3:01 pm
Electric Motorcycle conversion - Page 31 - Fuel Economy, Hypermiling, EcoModding News and Forum - EcoModder.com
November 21, 2012 at 5:45 pm
eHonda CB750
September 18, 2013 at 10:14 am

{ 42 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Paul Holmes September 27, 2011 at 7:38 pm

Hi Ben! Congratulations on the new DVD and the successful presentations at the Mother Earth Fair! Whoohoooo!!!!!

2 admin September 27, 2011 at 7:50 pm

Thanks Paul!

The audience was great at the Mother Earth Fair. The Renewable Energy Stage was a BIG outdoor tent – far larger than the outdoor tents at the MREA – and it was packed!

3 Chad September 28, 2011 at 9:19 am

Ben, Great presentation and information at the fair this past weekend! You mentioned not being a comfortable public speaker at the beginning of your presentation but on the contrary you did fantastic!!!

I’ve started looking for a Ninja 500 to convert to an electric commute/drag racing bike. The information you presented was perfect and I look forward to watching your DVD as a base of information for my project. Take care and please keep us updated with any improvements!

P.S. I think I want to go to 72V for my bike…

4 admin September 28, 2011 at 3:34 pm

Thanks Chad!

Try finding a copy of SECRETS OF EL NINJA. It’s a thin, but information packed book on the specifics of converting a Kawasaki Ninja to electric.
I like to say that “more volts is more fun!”, so go with as high of a system voltage as you can pack in there! Just remember to make sure to get all system components that will support your system voltage.


5 Hill T October 1, 2011 at 1:01 pm

Hi Ben, What is the top speed of your electric motorcycle and range on a single charge?

6 admin October 1, 2011 at 4:25 pm

I geared my setup for 45mph, because I am almost always in 25mph zones, with only a few 45 mph country roads. One gear swap (a $12 part) would take it to 65-70 without any other changes.
Real-world range has been 22-30 miles per charge, depending on driving conditions. It’s all covered in the video.

7 Fred K March 30, 2012 at 10:56 pm

I have a 1984 Yamaha 750 with shaft drive I plan to use for a donor bike. I plan on turning the electric motor a quarter turn and make a coupler to connect the two. Am I going to be geared to high?

8 Jim B May 15, 2012 at 9:22 am

Is it possible to get more miles per charge? Say, 40 mile on a charge and still be able to do 45 or so mph when needed? If so, what changes would need to be done?

Thanks for all your hard work!

9 Ben May 15, 2012 at 10:24 am

Yes, you can go farther. Range in an electric vehicle is mostly about the capacity of the battery pack. (Weight and aerodynamics being some of the other factors.)
My motorcycle is only using 4 batteries rated at 55 AH. You can get larger capacity lead-acid batteries than that. Of course, at some point it makes the most sense to go to lithium batteries, as they are lighter and more compact for how much energy they hold. Lithium costs more and requires a different battery charger than lead-acid. They also typically require some sort of battery management system.

In the future, I’m planning on working with a friend on an “Advanced Electric Motorcycle Design” video that will cover that in detail.

10 admin May 15, 2012 at 10:30 am

I have one friend that did a drive-shaft bike. The motor was longitudinal, with a coupler going right into the drive shaft. He had some trouble with pulling too many amps. You might want to put a pulley on the driveshaft, and then use a belt to connect over to a pulley on the motor. This would give you a better gear ratio. My cycle has a gear ratio of about 5:1 from the motor to the rear wheel. You could do that math so that your total driveline has a similar gear ratio.

11 Luhur June 4, 2012 at 9:09 am

Just wanna ask about the DVD, you still have it?? im in Malaysia, do you shipped to malaysia?? please email me soon… thanks

12 admin June 5, 2012 at 10:05 am

Yes, we are still selling it and shipping world-wide, including Malaysia!

13 Luhur June 12, 2012 at 12:55 pm

… is $29.99 all include with shipping or what?? … thanks

14 admin June 18, 2012 at 7:22 am

Yes, as stated in the description, the price of the DVD INCLUDES shipping.

15 JK July 2, 2012 at 11:01 am

Hi there!,
I would like to buy the DVDs but I have no experience in electronics,…what book I have to read, in order to understand the contents in the DVDs?

16 admin July 2, 2012 at 11:27 am

The DVD is designed for a complete novice.
If you have ever jump-started a car, you already know the basics of DC power and polarity. I suggest you go to your local library and get any real basic book on electricity. An entry-level electric car really is rather simple, but the more information and learning you can get, the better.

17 Geoff July 16, 2012 at 4:56 pm

Hi, I’ve been looking and noticed that many EV motorcycles have a very large back sprocket, Why is that? … Doesn’t that kill your top end?

18 Ben N July 16, 2012 at 5:06 pm

It’s pretty common to do that on cycles that don’t have a transmission. The low gearing allows you to keep your amps low, and the motor cool. If you want to experiment with gearing, you then swap out the cheap FRONT sprocket. You can only get so small on the front. It’s easier to have a larger rear sprocket. If you do something like motor to jackshaft to transmission, it’s not an issue, you just use your original gearing and transmission.

Going transmission-less saves space and weight. Usually, the big deal is making room for all your batteries. It’s also a really simple system in that you don’t have to shift – it’s extremely smooth at any speed.

If you go to a higher system voltage, that also increases your top speed, making a transmission even more optional.

19 jesse March 3, 2013 at 10:11 pm

Awesome. I stumbled accross this and very cool man. Would your dvd on the car work for say an old vw bug or rabbit?

20 Ben N March 4, 2013 at 7:48 am

Yes, all the information in the Electric Car DVD will apply well to an older VW. Those are great cars to work on!

21 Zach E March 7, 2013 at 6:42 pm

Hi Ben,
I ordered your dvd just a couple days ago, and just received it all the way in Alaska. Wonderfully helpful video, even for the total novice, and extremely fast delivery! thank you for making it so easy to learn to build an electric motorcycle. I can’t wait to get started.

22 Nicolas nguyen May 16, 2013 at 1:38 am

Hi Ben,
I’m very interested in starting an ev project. My only concern is not knowing where to get the required parts. Would your DVD include these information? Thanks Ben.

23 Ben N May 16, 2013 at 12:08 pm

Hi Nicolas!
In the video, I speak just a little on suppliers (like where I got the custom rear sprocket from.) There are MANY parts suppliers out there. The good news is that EV Cycle parts tend to be cheaper and more mass-produced than EV car parts because of the cross-over with electric scooters and electric golf carts.

I’ve created a list of parts suppliers for you at: http://300mpg.org/projects/evcycle/ev-cycle-parts-suppliers/
This information will also be included on the DVD-ROM of the BUILD YOUR OWN ELECTRIC MOTORCYCLE DVD set.


24 brady July 30, 2013 at 7:12 pm

it this now considered a scooter and not a motorcycle at the dmv?

25 Ben N July 30, 2013 at 7:15 pm

Nope! No change to the title, it’s still a regular motorcycle, meaning I can legally carry a passenger and travel on all roads without limitation.

26 ujjwal August 6, 2013 at 3:31 pm

Hi ben,
2 hp @3500 rpm brushless dc motor can use in bike with 12v lit ion battery

27 mario romo October 20, 2013 at 11:26 am

good afternoon, I write through the translator and that English was little, I write from chile, my question is whether you sell products of car and motorcycle to transform them to electric will exist one version in Spanish in order to understand, waiting for your reply I dismissal

28 Ben N October 20, 2013 at 12:07 pm

I do not sell parts for conversions. There are many places that you can order parts from. I only hope to teach and inspire people to learn and create.

29 mario romo October 22, 2013 at 11:31 am

maybe I express the question wrong, my question is if the dvd you sell, there is a version in Spanish as it does not understand much English and podeer. thanks

30 Ben N October 22, 2013 at 2:51 pm

I’m sorry, this is an American Standard English instructional video – there is no Spanish language version. Lo siento, pero yo no hablo espanol muy bien!

31 Jimmy January 16, 2015 at 3:22 pm

Does increasing ah say to 200ah agm marine batteries significantly improve range of travel? If so could I also increase speed output and still get a decent range at least 60 mph for 60+ miles?

32 admin January 19, 2015 at 11:54 am

Yes, using larger capacity (as rated in AH) batteries will get you more range. However, it will also add weight to the cycle and take more space. The reason why I used 55AH batteries was that it all fit within my “not-too-big” motorcycle frame. For a range of something like 60 miles, you want to go with Lithium batteries.
On a DC system, like what I used, the system voltage times the gearing determines your top speed. The best way to go for a pretty good top speed while minimizing current draw if to go with a higher voltage system. 72V lithium setups are very popular for DIY electric motorcycles right now.

33 John Cardillo August 3, 2015 at 6:46 am

I am interested in building an electric Trike Motorcycle. Can you help with this?

34 admin August 3, 2015 at 8:47 am

I mostly help by putting videos out there of projects that I have done, so others can learn from them. An electric trike would be just like an electric motorcycle, only with three wheels. All the other concepts are the same. If building so that there are two wheels in the back, you will likely be using a light-duty rear axel with differential, and attaching the motor to that.
Take a look through the EV Album for ideas. There’s a few trikes on there.

35 Chantal LeBlanc September 16, 2015 at 9:30 pm

Could you estimate the cost of one of these projects?

36 admin September 22, 2015 at 8:08 am

My 1981 Kawasaki electric project cost me right around $2000, including the cycle frame, batteries, motor, controller, and all other major parts. I have seen projects costing literally nothing (built from a forklift a guy’s work was scrapping out!) to extremely expensive racing electric motorcycles. The batteries are the single largest expense, and largest variable, depending on what battery pack you want, voltage and chemistry.

37 admin September 22, 2015 at 8:08 am

My 1981 Kawasaki electric project cost me right around $2000, including the cycle frame, batteries, motor, controller, and all other major parts. I have seen projects costing literally nothing (built from a forklift a guy’s work was scrapping out!) to extremely expensive racing electric motorcycles. The batteries are the single largest expense, and largest variable, depending on what battery pack you want, voltage and chemistry.

38 ed June 17, 2016 at 11:54 am

Hi. Does the streaming video option come with the ability to access “the photos of the entire conversion process, recommended reading list, useful web links, information on controllers, including the Open ReVolt, and motor diagram.” That is included with teh dvd option?

ALso while im asking is the information provided still the best way to go about constructing a bike so long after this was originally published?

39 admin June 21, 2016 at 9:38 am

Hello! The streaming video on Vimeo does NOT include the ROM materials. It’s just video – like watching a movie. The DVD set is TWO discs – One is the instructional video DVD. The other is a DVD-ROM disc with Jpeg photographs, web links, PDF files, etc. That information is NOT included in the streaming film, as it is NOT video. I priced the online streaming film lower, as it does NOT include the ROM data.
The video is still great information. How motors, motorcycles, motor control and more hasn’t changed any. However, batteries have changed a lot lately, both in price and varieties available. For the absolute latest on lithium batteries, I recommend reading as many web forums as you can!

40 Roy Henderson May 19, 2017 at 12:50 pm

Same question for the cars have you ever put together one that charges on solar panels that you carry in the car?

41 admin May 23, 2017 at 9:42 am

Generally, solar panels are too large and bulky to provide practical solar charging for electric vehicles when actually MOUNTED on the vehicle.
We have electric outlets nearly everywhere, so, unless you are trying to survive the zombie apocalypse or you just like driving around in the desert, put the solar panels on your house, your garage, or your back yard.
Solar panels ARE practical on a smaller or less energy intensive vehicle, such as a golf cart. The solar panels then also provide shade.
I did see an electric trike this past weekend at the Bay Area Maker Faire in California. That had a solar array on the roof that shaded the driver and provided power for the driver. The owner did admit that it limited how fast he could drive because of it.

42 stan thompson (buffalo n.y.) May 26, 2019 at 8:18 am

Thanks professor Nelson!! (lol) best instructional video I have seen by far! stan T.

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