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esaj

Firewheel PCBs, connectors, battery &wiring (OLDER GEN)

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Since I have the Firewheel in pieces now, I thought I'd take some pictures and try to map the wiring, in case anyone might need it in the future.

NOTE: This is the older PCB (with Sport & Comfortable-mode, but apparently with the old step down transformer which could burn), I DON'T KNOW IF THE WIRING IS THE SAME IN NEWER ONES. Also, I CANNOT GUARANTEE THIS IS RIGHT. Although I hope so, otherwise I might have a dead Firewheel soon... :rolleyes:  The pictures aren't that good, lots of wires in the way, bad lighting (had to use flash) and I'm just a lousy photographer, even more with a smart phone...

 

First off, battery wires and the switches & speaker at the top / front of the case:

BatteryAndSwitches.thumb.jpg.d83cefe58b8

Pretty self-explanatory, except for what I've marked as "REGEN BRAKING?". It's actually marked as "Input #2 (BMS)" behind the mainboard. No idea what data/voltage/whatever the mainboard gets from it, but it will start complaining something like "low battery or some other problem in battery" or something along those lines, if it's not connected. Newer mainboards do not apparently require this wire.

Also note that the POWER-SWITCH has 4 wires, 2 on each side of the switch (they all go the row connector in main PCB), the other two are to power the led inside the button, the other two are the actual switch.

Only two wires are connected to CHARGE PORT, although the connector from the charger itself has 3 pins.

 

Main PCB: I actually have two of these, I took the pictures from the extra board (I think it's the chinese-speaking version Vee73 sent to me along with the wheel). It has same wiring as the one on the actual wheel I have.

gxj0Wf6.png

Starting from top left, there are two "mystery" wires (marked as "?") going off from the top left -side, in both boards. These aren't connected to anything, I don't know what they are. They are marked as Comm RX and Comm TX behind the PCB.

Next, top-left corner, motor wires. These go to a special connector, you can't miswire them (unless you pull them out from the connector :D).

A little bit more to the right, there's a row connector of sorts (Marked with "*", an asterisk/star) that has lots of different wires going from it. I've explained them in black text on the white background in the image. The ones marked as "To secondary PCB (<SOME NUMBER>) have similar numbers marked in the secondary PCB-image. Two wires from each edge (1st & 2nd pin, 9th & 10th pin) are wired to either side of the POWER SWITCH (NOTE: 1st & 2nd power the led in the button, 9th & 10th are the real switch!). 3rd pin goes to the single red wire -connector in battery (This is marked as BMS input in the backside of the board). 6th and 7th & 8th (as a pair) go to the secondary PCB (In order: +12V DC, IO, Ground).

Next up, nearer to the right upper edge of the board, are three color-coded wires that go to the motor. Nothing special about them.

Lower left, there's wires that go to the MODE SWITCH (selecting between Sport- & comfortable-mode).

On the right lower corner are the thicker red & blue power wires coming from the battery POWER-connector. There are thinner wires apparently UNDER the PCB, which go to the secondary PCB. I suspect they are the power wires for the secondary PCB, but could again be wrong.

 

Secondary PCB:

SecondaryPCB.thumb.jpg.abc2009f7f854cc82

Starting from top left, there are the POWER-wires that come from the mainboard. Note that they go to different points in the board, they are the thicker red & black wires.

Near to left lower corner is a single red wire going into the mainboard (from 6th pin of the row-connector in the mainboard marked as "*", asterisk/star in the Main PCB picture). The red wire actually goes where the circle shows, the black power wire is just in the way on this picture. This is marked as +12V DC in the backside of the mainboard.

On the upper right corner, from left to right, there are the BRAKE/TAILLIGHT, LIGHT SWITCH and FRONT LIGHT -connectors, nothing special about these. They have connectors which you can't place the wrong way around (well, maybe if you push really hard ;)).

Lower middle of the board has the connectors for speaker and display. I do hope the display-connector cannot be put the wrong way around, or if it is, it won't break the display... Yeah, didn't check or mark it before pulling the connector :rolleyes:

Finally on the lower right corner, there's a connector going to the row connector in the Main PCB, 7th & 8th pins. The one coming from 8th is the ground wire, 7th is IO between PCBs.

 

Motor connectors:

MotorConnectors.thumb.jpg.e213610126beb9

Not much to explain here. The connector goes to the upper right corner in the Main PCB-picture (Hall sensors). The three separate power wires are color coded (and in this case, soldered) and go the same colored wires in the Main PCB.

Hope this is of some use to someone... ;)

 

Edited by esaj

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Interesting! I didn't do as much investigation when I replaced my dead board, just marked everything with tape. This could be useful if I need to open it up later.

My original battery pack had the single-wire connector that you called "regen braking" but it wasn't connected to anything. The second battery pack that I got to replace it did not have that connector at all. The controller board does not have any spare connectors, so I am not sure what is going on there. 

The wires marked ?? in your diagram I think may be for leveling calibration. Gimlet described the process for calibration here, I don't know if it applies to Firewheel as well though. You can see the wires in my two control boards, for some reason they changed the wire colors to both red on the latest board. The wires lead out some small holes in the shell and go behind the black leg pads, held down with some electrical tape. So I assume you'd pull off the leg pads and temporarily connect the wires to calibrate. 

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The wires marked ?? in your diagram I think may be for leveling calibration. Gimlet described the process for calibration here, I don't know if it applies to Firewheel as well though. You can see the wires in my two control boards, for some reason they changed the wire colors to both red on the latest board. The wires lead out some small holes in the shell and go behind the black leg pads, held down with some electrical tape. So I assume you'd pull off the leg pads and temporarily connect the wires to calibrate. 

That would make sense. And they did go out through a small hole and were taped behind the leg pad.

Also, I picked up the motor model/serial number from it, in my case it was A16AMK27C1412048393. There was also a small logo with some chinese, and then the text XINAOMA. I googled XINAOMA and found this:

DAAO Electric (Jiangsu) Co., Ltd. and Changzhou AOMA Technology Co., Ltd., established in 2006, is a technology institution and manufacturing enterprise specialized in researching and developing electromotor and controller of electric vehicles. ...

Thanks to the comprehensive management system and standard, mature production techniques, thorough testing methods, and precise and effective quality assurance system, XINAOMA & DAAO brand enjoys high prestige in domestic and overseas markets. 

I traced the motor back to here: http://www.daaomotor.com/html/Self-balancing_Wheelbarrow_Motor/  , but there are no models starting with AMK27 or AMK270 (there are some starting with AMK260 under E-bike/E-Scooter gearless motors). Maybe the motor is already out of production, or the precise model is somehow else decipherable from the model/serialnumber..? There are only two motors in the Self-balancing Wheelbarrow Motor -section, that are marked as 16": AMK-D1002-C (Which, judging by the logo, is used in 16" IPS) and AMK-D1002. Don't know if the 14" -models could also be built into bigger rims.

If someone figures out the exact motor type (especially rpm-range & rated wattage / peak wattage), I'd be interested to know.

Edit: Here's a picture of the Firewheel motor

http://forum.electricunicycles.info/forum/download/file.php?id=89&t=1&mode=view

with the spokes it does look like AMK205-1020 or AMK205-1012 under the E-scooter/bike -models, but I doubt they would have used such for EUC..? Could be it has been purpose-built for Firewheel?

 

Edited by esaj

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Nice tear-down analysis, we need more of this with other Wheels!

But doesn't the Firewheel 16" have arm-extensions from the motor to the wheel rim (notice the fork being used a bike lever, what could possibly go wrong:blink:)? On the 16" IPS's, the motor action (stator/rotors) extends to the outer perimeter of the Wheel. 

maxresdefault.jpg

IPS 111 Wheel

Motor spec'ing is really a nebulous art. Apparently the standard in the industry is that it's the point where the windings in the stator do not exceed a detrimental sustained operating temperature + nn% margin.

Really surprised the Firewheel Engineer's selected different gauged wiring for the 3 three-phase wires that feed into the motor. Can you recognize what gauge the smaller ones are?   

wire-gauges-comparison-640x365.jpg

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Nice tear-down analysis, we need more of this with other Wheels!

But doesn't the Firewheel 16" have arm-extensions from the motor to the wheel rim (notice the fork being used a bike lever, what could possibly go wrong:blink:)? On the 16" IPS's, the motor action (stator/rotors) extends to the outer perimeter of the Wheel. 

Yeah, I meant that one of the two 16" motors in Daao's pages shows IPS-logo (but probably isn't the Firewheel's motor).

 

Really surprised the Firewheel Engineer's selected different gauged wiring for the 3 three-phase wires that feed into the motor. Can you recognize what gauge the smaller ones are?   

Unfortunately, I've already closed up the mainboard compartment, and cannot check the gauges anymore. But one of my pictures shows the following texts in the side of the bigger gauge wires: "STYLE (maybe?) 3<maybe 1>35 14AWG 600V VW-I (or 1?) TYPE TV-3 SILICONE RUBBER". I'm not 100% sure on the texts, as they are blurry in the picture. The bigger gauges come from the mainboard, not the motor. It might be this: http://www.ebay.com/itm/14AWG-200-C-600V-Silicone-Rubber-Wire-Cable-Style-3135-at-Red-1M-Black-1M-/121601525784?rmvSB=true

So the cables coming from motor are even smaller.

 

While tearing down the wheel wasn't exactly easy, putting it back together has been actually a lot, lot harder. Partially because I wanted to move the secondary PCB out of the way to get room for the new batteries.

secondaryBMS1.thumb.jpg.3a83c9a2e59d84c9

So first off, I moved the secondary PCB to the mainboard compartment, although in an awkward position (that was the only position I could figure where it could fit). It's held in place by blobs of silicone. As you can see, there's a lot of wires going through the channel to the front of the wheel! And they would be there, even if the secondary PCB was still in the battery compartment.

 

The mainboard that's currently on the wheel has actually been MOVED backwards on the metal plate! It was like that already, I don't know if Vee73 did it, or if it came like that. The pictures in the earlier post show the other mainboard I have (I'm not sure if it works, would have to check Vee73, I think it's the "chinese-speaking" board he mentioned when I was buying the wheel, but could also be the earlier board that burned soon after he got the wheel).

mainboard1.thumb.jpg.8194934b200f764bae4

If you compare this image to the one on the first post, you'll notice the difference in position, the edge of the board is much closer to the edge of the metal plate, and there are the earlier screw holes for heatsink covered by silicone next to the where heatsink is now.

mainboard2.thumb.jpg.3d4db0a98c3be7fdc56

Here the position of the mainboard is more visible. It's very close to the edge of the metal plate. As you can see, the secondary PCB would have not fitted if the heat sink was more to the right! The heatsink would have hit the secondary PCB...

 

mainboard3.thumb.jpg.7a5c7a330df0e02d760

One more image of the mainboard compartment before closing it up. Closing it WASN'T EASY. Getting all the wires to fit into the channel and others to stay inside while screwing the metal plate back took some effort, and I actually had to do it twice before it went well. It would have been SOO much easier, were the board accessible from the outside... Form before function, I guess.

After that, I temporarily screwed the motor back to the shell-half, re-attached the battery (it scared me by giving a spark as I put the connector in :P) and tried to turn it on. "Welcome to use Firewheel, sport-mode". And then something like "Low battery or bad cell in battery". Never heard that one before. I'm pretty sure the word was "cell", but it could have been something similar too. I shut down the wheel instantly, and checked the wires. I then plugged in the wire I've thought might be related to the regenerative braking. Turning the wheel back on, the error message didn't come again and everything seemed normal. Not sure if it was because of the wire I attached or not. Tested that lights work, and that the battery display works. Everything looked ok, so I turned it off and unscrewed the motor.

While putting the motor back on temporarily, I noticed how difficult it is to get the motor cable placed correctly. You have to poke at it between the tire/motor and the shell half while closing it. I can tuck some of the cable inside the mainboard compartment, but not all, as the compartment is so full of wiring and other stuff now, I don't want it to cause any connectors getting loose or such. But I got worried it would hit the motor or the turning tire while riding, unless I can somehow better secure it in place. There are two battery compartment screw-places, between which the cable runs So plan B, a guide of sorts:

guide1.thumb.jpg.83a7e3d2c5f7e5ad90e9010

I took some measurements and sawed a piece of metal (4.4cm in length) of a card shield that's used behind desktop computer cases to shield empty card slots. I then filed off the sharp edges and drilled holes for the screws. The holes are about 3.75cm apart (measured from their centers):

guide2.thumb.jpg.f5c73d06fd7fa939968b3e1

I had to file off about 1mm off the right side after taking this picture before it would fit correctly.

guide3.thumb.jpg.f676703177a61fee508613c

This is where it goes, the idea is that I can tuck the extra motor cable under it, and it should prevent the cable from hitting the motor or tire (I hope)...

Next up, sealing the main board compartment. The wire channel from the compartment to the front of the wheel should also be used for the new batteries power & charge wires, that's a no go. They simply won't fit. I have a plan how I'm going to run the wires elsewhere (hint: I've got tens of meters of plastic electric cable pipes in the attic, that are about 1-1.5cm in diameter, left overs from when the house was built), but not going do that mod right now (I'm a bit pressed for time, as my "hobby room" is actually our spare guest room, and needs to be empty & cleaned up by friday evening... :rolleyes:).

silicone2.thumb.jpg.d7f51420d52ba8b343c7

If possible, I don't want to be opening that one ever again... :D  Didn't spare on the silicone.

silicone1.thumb.jpg.9b6b2d03a71cb2c2863b

And finally, here's the current stage:

build1.thumb.jpg.27569f031d79928b427e784

I'll let the silicone dry a bit, and put the batteries back on the other half & seal that one too, before going back to attaching the motor.

Edited by esaj
Typos, added some more information/remarks

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Unfortunately, I've already closed up the mainboard compartment, and cannot check the gauges anymore. But one of my pictures shows the following texts in the side of the bigger gauge wires: "STYLE (maybe?) 3<maybe 1>35 14AWG 600V VW-I (or 1?) TYPE TV-3 SILICONE RUBBER". I'm not 100% sure on the texts, as they are blurry in the picture. The bigger gauges come from the mainboard, not the motor. It might be this: http://www.ebay.com/itm/14AWG-200-C-600V-Silicone-Rubber-Wire-Cable-Style-3135-at-Red-1M-Black-1M-/121601525784?rmvSB=true

So the cables coming from motor are even smaller.

 

Yeah I was surprised how tiny those wires were that came out of the motor hub. They looked to be about 18AWG to me at best and it seemed kind of silly to have those thick wires coming off the control board.  

Since I was using one of the spare battery compartments I just tucked all the spare motor wire back into the control board space. When you're using all four for batteries I guess they do something like you did, it would be almost impossible to get all that motor wire slack into the control board!

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Since I was using one of the spare battery compartments I just tucked all the spare motor wire back into the control board space. When you're using all four for batteries I guess they do something like you did, it would be almost impossible to get all that motor wire slack into the control board!

Yeah, at this point I'd really like it if the batteries and boards were accessible from the outside, the small spaces and having to move the motor cable from a small opening while holding the shell-half and motor in place is a pain.

I checked with Vee73, the "spare" mainboard is the fried one, the spare secondary PCB should work, but is the chinese-speaking version. At least I have a spare secondary PCB then. The newer mainboard that's now in the wheel was already moved back on the metal plate when he got it, so my guess is that it was meant for F520 or F779 originally.

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Finally got the Firewheel back together, and spent the rest of the evening cleaning the house etc. Now that I'd be ready to go out and test ride it, it started raining... :angry:

I had to rush putting it back together to get the guest bedroom cleared out, so no pictures. Not 100% happy with the result (I was having problems getting the shell-halves to come together), and now there's also a slight sound of something scrubbing against the tire. At first I thought it was blobs of silicone, but after cutting those off with long garden shears (:D), the sound is still there. :(

Doesn't sound THAT bad, but can't be a really good thing either. Couldn't see anything else than the few blobs of silicone with a flashlight, but there could be more somewhere. Hopefully it's not touching the plastics anywhere, although I doubt that. I was thinking of doing just a small test ride with slow speeds to see if the noise disappears (if it's silicone, it's bound to tear or wear off), but mother nature disagrees once again... <_<

 

Edit: Finally got out to do a quick test lap of about 7km. Light switch, frontlight and back/brakelight are working ok. Battery display works ok. Comfortable- & sport-mode switching works ok. Didn't notice anything weird in wheel behavior, I went slow for the first couple of kilometers, then did some high speed riding (all the way to "Take care") on a long empty straight, didnt' attach the bike computer after rebuild, so don't know the speeds. So in that regard, everything seems ok.

The sound is still there, even after the lap (well, maybe not as noticeable anymore). I think my best bet (outside of opening the shells again to check) is to deflate the tire and then try to push the rubber out of the way enough to see what is causing it. I'm still guessing a blob of silicone in some place where I can't see with the tire in the way, if it were hitting/scraping the plastics I believe the sound would be different and it would cause enough rolling resistance to affect the riding. But since I didn't have the bike computer with me, I don't know if the warnings occurred earlier than usual. Hopefully I got the time to do the deflating & checking sometime tomorrow, otherwise it might not be until sunday-evening...

Before putting in the new batteries (it's still likely going to be at least a week or few weeks, don't know really, but probably), I'll also go out to get some cleaning/lubricating spray, copper spray, wire ties (I've got some big ones, but need smaller ones), new XT60-connector, some other connector for the charging wires, some washers, shrink tube etc. Some basic multimeter wouldn't hurt either. Earlier I thought I wouldn't re-open the mainboard compartment anymore, but on second thought, I could make the wiring a lot better with the wire ties, shrink tubes and such. Might even go as far as to replace some wiring....

Edited by esaj

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I had to rush putting it back together to get the guest bedroom cleared out, so no pictures. Not 100% happy with the result (I was having problems getting the shell-halves to come together), and now there's also a slight sound of something scrubbing against the tire. At first I thought it was blobs of silicone, but after cutting those off with long garden shears (:D), the sound is still there. :(

It might be the wire channel that goes between the two halves. I had that problem too when I put in the white shield shown here:

hYTHqH1.jpg 

I had the same problem with the halves not really wanting to fit together, I think I may have warped them a bit when I screwed down the covers on the battery compartments. After wiggling things around a bit and convincing myself no wires were being pinched, I pulled the two sides together with the screws. 


The first time I put it on, the shield was rubbing against the tire just a little. So I cut down the sides of the wire channel by about 5mm and beveled the edges of the shield so they didn't stick out as much. The clearance in that area is really tight. 

 

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The first time I put it on, the shield was rubbing against the tire just a little. So I cut down the sides of the wire channel by about 5mm and beveled the edges of the shield so they didn't stick out as much. The clearance in that area is really tight. 

Thanks for the tip, I'll try to check it tomorrow (or today actually, it's over 4am here now :D). Just realized that I had the wheel in pieces since monday-evening until thursday evening, this must be longest time I haven't ridden since I got the generic back in early May... :huh: :blink: :D

 

Edited by esaj

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Yup, deflated the tire, after which it was pretty easy to see a large blob of silicon in the mainboard wire channel that was scrubbing the tire. Managed to cut the excess off with metal saw blade, and inflated the tire back, this time to around 4 bar, before I put it always into 4.3-4.5 bar, but of course some of the air always gets out when taking the connector off (so the real pressure is now less than 4 bar). The sound is now gone when the tire runs forwards, there is some very minor repeating sound when running backwards, guess there's still some small blob left, but at least it doesn't seem to be an issue anymore (I can't ride backwards, at least yet)... Double-checked the wires, nothing is visible from the silicone seams, and the motor cable is safely far away from the tire and motor. Should be good enough(?) until I get the custom battery packs and do a full rebuild, that time "more properly" and without rush ;)

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As I was taking the broken mainboard PCB off the metal plate, I found out that the backside of the PCB has the connector pins printed out. I took  high resolution photos of the both sides, and link them here.  (NOTE: Large images, 2.5MB + 3.5MB)  I won't embed them in the post, so it won't take forever to load on slow connections.

Front

Back

Do also note that on the frontside picture, the three motor wires (Blue, green and yellow) are on the top left, where as on the backside picture they're on the top left.

Also, THERE'S AN ERROR IN THE PIN-NUMBERING IN THE MAIN PCB-PICTURE ON THE FIRST POST OF THIS THREAD, there are 10, not 9,  pins on the row-connector (how the hell did I count it wrong? :huh:) to which the power-button wires, secondary PCB wires and the single wire from battery connect to. So 5th pin should be 6th pin, 6th & 7th should be 7th & 8th etc. 4th and 5th aren't connected to anything (marked as "Output #1 (NMOS)" and "Output #2 (NMOS)" on the backside). I did correct the texts in the first post, and added info about the pins, which is also explained below:

The "mystery wires" in the corner are marked as "Comm Rx" and "Comm Tx" on the backside, so they could be somesort of diagnostics also. It would be interesting to see what they put out if connected to a com-port with powered & working PCB...

The "Regen braking"-wire (3rd pin, marked correctly in the first picture) is actually marked as "Input #2 (BMS)" on the backside. Now I'm wondering to where on the BMS it goes, as I though it was connected to the charge-port red-wire, but it could actually go to some pin on the BMS... It could also explain why I got the "Low battery or bad cell in battery" -message, when I tried to power on the wheel with the wire disconnected. Might be something I have to take into account with the new battery packs.

The "extra" two wires to the power button are of course the power lines for the LED on the button (the button lights up when the wheel is powered). The LED powers from 1st and 2nd pin (the pin numbers are correct in first picture). The actual power switch connects to the last pins (9th and 10th, marked as 8th and 9th in the image on the first postSo if taking the wires off from the power button, it's actually important to check that you get them right way back, as the other pins on the power button are for the LED and other are the actual power switch.

The 6th pin (marked as 5th pin in the image on the first post) that goes to the secondary PCB is +12V DC line.

The 7th & 8th pin (marked as 6th & 7th pin in the image on the first post) are marked as "IO #1 (uC)" (7th pin), so probably the communication between the PCBs, and the ground -wire (8th pin).

 

Edited by esaj

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