Zero DSR Adventure rides?

Discussion in 'Electric Motorcycles' started by sstahler, Feb 11, 2018.

  1. sstahler

    sstahler Adventurer

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    I've got a 2017 Zero DSR with about 5k miles on it, a fair amount of trips and off-road, no commuting. I've got a GPS dualsport ride planned for Death Valley for the upcoming weekend, likely to be 1,100-1,200 miles across 4 days. I haven't seen too much about people doing adventure rides on Zeros, so wanted to see if anyone has done multi-day ADV trips?
    #1
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  2. ultrarnr

    ultrarnr Been here awhile

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    sstahler,

    I have done multi-day trips on my Zero SR but nothing that would be considered an adventure ride. I think Road Runner magazine had something about someone riding an electric motorcycle to the tip of South America awhile back. The main challenge you will have (obviously) is charging. I have the aftermarket Elcon chargers so I can charge at 6.3kW. You could mount them on your DSR but it really cuts down on what else you can bring along.
    #2
  3. sstahler

    sstahler Adventurer

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    Good to know others are doing some trips. I've got the evtricity, so I'm doing about the same charge rate, higher if I carry a couple other chargers that I have. I try to tailor what I carry for the ride to reduce weight/crap I'm taking with me. Yeah, here in northern NV is kinda worst case for EVs, but I've been making it work and never been stuck out. I do run the bike down to 0% quite a bit, just out of necessity. The DSR is great offroad, very controlled power with the ability to hear the tires breaking traction (no noise) helps a lot. I've taken it down some steep rocky stuff that I never would've considered on my Ducati. As a multi-bike owner, I really love the zero maintenance required. I spend almost no time in the garage now, kinda weird.
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  4. jimmy650

    jimmy650 South Canol Racing Club

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    I rode a DRS on a 2 day dual sport, Family Outdoor Adventures, I think. It was about 100 miles a day plus an 8 mile commute back to the camp. So a bit less than 120 miles per day. I rode both days on a single charge and just plugged into the 110 at the camp at night.
    I did have a power tank (extra 2.8 cell box) that gave me a cushion, although I believe I could have done it with the standard battery. I used up a lot of power blowing away my friends on their 1200's on the road sections!
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  5. Lesharoturbo

    Lesharoturbo Nerdly Adventurer

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    One thing to remember is that larger charges only work if you have the power connection. A 120V standard outlet has a Max current of 15A and 1800W .A high current 120 is 20A, 2400W .

    In some cases, you might find a120V 30A outlet, but not in must hoses or other public places. That would give a Max of 3600W

    To get 6.3kW (6300W) you would need a 240V 30A outlet minimum .
    #5
  6. ultrarnr

    ultrarnr Been here awhile

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    Lesharoturbo, The way the Elcon chargers are configured you can plug into the standard J1772 electric vehicle charger. With an adapter you can also plug into a NEMA 14-50 outlet which is pretty standard in camp grounds. I rode out to Deals Gap in western NC a few years ago and charged in their camp grounds with the NEMA 14-50 adapter. In some cases where the J1772 infrastructure is pretty thin charging in camp grounds is your only option. Technically you can plug the Elcons into a 110 volt outlet and they will charge but it is far faster to use some sort of 220 volt outlet.
    #6
  7. sstahler

    sstahler Adventurer

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    Yup, around here I mostly use RV parks, 30a or 50a. Usually they have a 15a 110 at the hookup too, so multiple chargers can be plugged into different circuits for max power. I've used my evtricity on 110 when that's all that is available and it actually charges a bit faster than the onboard charger. In my experience, the chargers are pretty flexible and can be plugged into 110-240v and adjust no problems.
    #7
  8. Jalamajohn

    Jalamajohn Ready to Ride!

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    I confirm that you and your Zero blew me away on my S10 when we hit the pavement. That bike was fast! Sounds cool too.:clap
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  9. inbred

    inbred Sweeter than Yoo-hoo

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    The few, the proud, the electric. My hat is off to all you pioneers of free spirited two wheel travel fueled by the electron. In awe.
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  10. Lesharoturbo

    Lesharoturbo Nerdly Adventurer

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    Yep, that would do it.
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  11. BrianTRice

    BrianTRice Nerdy adventurer

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    I've ridden from San Francisco to Seattle and back on my 2016 Zero DSR, but that's touring on 101 and a bit of I-5. I've also ridden to LA and back via 101 and (until recently) the PCH. Overall, the bike has 27000 miles logged in two years, with few problems.

    My DSR with 11kW charging capacity can typically cover 450 miles in a 12-hour riding day, but each trip leg is about 100 miles (120+ miles at 45mph) which limits adventure use. The way it works that does make touring a little more flexible than regular EV use is that I can pull into an RV park and with a little quick exchange, charge from a 50A plug (and one lesser plug) to charge at the bike's limit, and RV parks are at least more plentiful near recreation areas.
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  12. zap2504

    zap2504 Dave E.

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    RoadRunner magazine has a 5-part article (ends in the June 2018 issue) from John Flores as he rode a Zero DSR from San Francisco to NYC emulating the 1903 George Wyman trip.
    #12
  13. ctromley

    ctromley Long timer

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    Don't forget that charging is not a peak event, it is considered a continuous draw. That means the rated outlet current needs to be de-rated to 80%. You need to draw no more than 12 A from a 15 A outlet, 16 A from a 20 A, 24 A from a 30 A, 40 A from a 50 A.

    When I installed a 14-50 outlet at home (4 prong, sometimes called a range outlet, as opposed to a 3 prong 14-30 dryer outlet) I found that 50 A breakers are much cheaper because they are much more popular than 40 A. Don't assume though. 40 A breakers are available. Since Big Copper is expensive (a 50 A circuit uses multi-conductor cable as big as an index finger), smaller and cheaper cable can make a 40 A circuit more attractive even with the higher-cost breaker.

    Be a good guest. Know what you should be drawing from the circuit in question, and what your vehicle will draw. No host wants to find overheated wires, terminals, breakers, etc. after you're gone. Generally if a J1772 EVSE is involved and the vehicle is fully J1772-compliant (not a hack), the EVSE and vehicle should work all this out via the handshake before any charging current flows. Otherwise you need to be paying attention to what can handle what. And don't forget that if you're bringing your EVSE, it doesn't know the capacity of the circuit you plug it into.

    Surviving an adventure means making sure nothing goes sideways. If you mess up your charging in the wild, you're hosed. And of course you'll be figuring this out when you're head is fragged after a challenging day. Know your stuff.
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  14. decemberlight2

    decemberlight2 Adventurer

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    I need a comprehensive source for all this. Where do I go to find all the "stuff" ? Selling the gasers, going e.

    Thanks
    #14
  15. ctromley

    ctromley Long timer

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    Sorry, I know of no comprehensive source. How did you come by the knowledge you use to develop riding techniques, maintenance tips & tricks, what to pack and how to load it, general understanding of how your engine and suspension work, all the little factoids that inform your adventure riding on gassers? I learned my EV 'stuff' during the days when you had to build your own. I hung out on the Electric Vehicle Discussion List (EVDL), a pre-forum email distribution list that was a wealth of info regarding just about everything pertaining to EVs. It's still around but the activity level is much reduced now that EVs are becoming mainstream. There are still some great minds there. There is also http://www.diyelectriccar.com/ , a more modern web forum, that focuses more on building and converting. It has a sub-forum devoted to anything with 2 wheels which includes e-bikes, scooters, EMs, etc. There is also a sub-forum on batteries and charging that is mainly about current projects. Nothing there specifically devoted to basics, but like anything else you pick up much of this stuff in snippets while exploring and discussing other things.

    To build some background I would get a book or go to the web to study up on DIY home wiring. Seriously. You need to know things like ampacity, codes regarding wire gauge vs. current draw, plug and receptacle types and the like. Then go to a Lowes or Home Depot and see what the stuff looks like and how it goes together. Study up on EVSE and the J1772 standard to learn exactly what chargers and EVSE do and how they interact. It couldn't hurt to do a little remedial basics of electricity if you're lacking there too. Do you understand Ohm's Law and how to use it in a practical sense? Pretty basic stuff when messing with EVs, but I'll bet you never used it working on ICE vehicles. (Example: A volt meter, a resistor and Ohm's law can help you find a marginal battery jumper or a ground fault. And yeah, you should know why clean and tight battery connections are critical, what a ground fault is and why you don't want one.)

    I know it seems like a lot. That's because we all tend to take for granted how much we know about how our ICE vehicles work and how we need to use them, but that was knowledge we gained over a long time. For many, EVs seem to have burst onto the scene. It's not really all that difficult to gather a new set of knowledge. It will come, but it can seem overwhelming when you try to do it quickly.
    #15
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  16. longslowdistance

    longslowdistance Long timer Supporter

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    The batteries don’t like high heat, so riding there in summer may limit power output. And the batteries won’t charge until they cool down to 120 degrees. They are aircoooled, and slow riding does not cool them as well as 45-60 mph.
    #16
  17. BrianTRice

    BrianTRice Nerdy adventurer

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    I maintain https://www.zeromanual.com which has a lot of information about electric motorcycle travel because Zero bikes are the most likely candidates for it right now.
    #17
  18. Benduro

    Benduro Motorodeo Supporter

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    @Number8teen
    #18