errantember: (darth bobo)
About two months ago, I had three functional vehicles: a Honda SUV, a Geo Metro, and my infamous EVTA R-20 Electric Scooter. I now have zero. I sold the Honda (for a really excellent price), the batteries on the scooter died, so I was down to the Metro. I took it up to D/FW to see my Mom, then almost immediately to San Antonio to visit an old friend with a new baby. No problems on those trips. However, it's now randomly stalling out, and all the previous solutions I've tried haven't been working. I've got another message out on the Geo Metro list, and have previously gotten Monster Help from them, but in the meantime I'm vehicle-less. The kind of problem I'm seeing is one of those issues where any one of ten different things could be causing it, and the only way to find out which one is to systematically try them all.

The Metro probably isn't going anywhere for a while.

I'm intending on replacing the batteries on the scooter before I sell it, but I wasn't planning on doing that until spring. In the meantime, I'm looking seriously into buying a gas-powered scooter. I can get one for under $1,000, and, unlike my electric scooter, I'll be able to drive anywhere I want without having to worry about running out of power, waiting to recharge, or worrying about rain. It's really too bad, because electric scooters have the potential to be *way* better than gas ones, but unfortunately none of the major manufacturers are making them, and the ones that do get made often suck or are outrageously expensive.

I also don't have the money for something like this at the moment, and it greatly increases the likelihood that I'm going to have start dipping into my retirement savings if I don't see some serious gaming income soon.

Time to re-double my already re-doubled efforts!
errantember: (Little Cowboy Scott)
I decided to head out on the scooter today to do my Farmer's Market/Wheatsville run and to work on my resume and read The Web That Has No Weaver : Understanding Chinese Medicine as part of my latest head trip. I saw there was a chance of isolated thunderstorms later in the evening, but I figured I'd be home by then. Because the scooter is a) electric and b) is missing 50% of its main body panel, I generally don't drive it when I think it will rain. Not to mention the fact that it's dangerous and uncomfortable and I was wearing sandals.

I was headed north on Lamar when some idiot in a huge black pickup pulled a crazy stunt where he pulled out into the oncoming lane and *stopped* while waiting for a spot to open up in his lane. It had started sprinkling earlier, and I'd already had the thought that it was a very dangerous time to ride because it hadn't rained hard in a long time. All those fucking SXSW (GRR!) people had been hosing the streets with oil from their low-end, poorly-maintained shitboxes and the road was likely to be slick. When I hit the brakes, the scooter tried to lay over. It got to about 45 degrees before I caught it with my *sandaled* feet in Horse Stance and narrowly stopped it from smearing me over the pavement.
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errantember: (Little Cowboy Scott)
The charger for my electric scooter stopped working after coming home in the rain the other night. After talking to [ profile] trippedbreaker to narrow down the possibilities, and confirming that the warranty had run out, I decided to take it apart to see if the problem was something obvious. Of the hundred or so components inside, it turns out the one that was broken was very obvious and fairly easy to fix. A coil had pulled out of the board on one side. I tried re-soldering the stub, but it was too short to fit through the board, so I ended up pulling one coil of the 50 or so off to lengthen the wire, soldered it in place, tried it, saw it didn't work, un-soldered it, stripped off the insulation on the wire, then re-soldered it, all in under two hours.

Now it works. :)
errantember: (St. Ember)
I've just completed the hour+ long job of removing the controller from my EVTA R-20 electric scooter, which died recently. The controller and the throttle are under warranty, and will be replaced for free. Several other items, all of which were probably damaged due to the inclusion of too-wimpy shocks on the original model, are *not* under warranty despite having been damaged or destroyed by either a design flaw or manufacturing defect. Let me make a short list of what I can remember off the top of my head of things that have gone wrong with the bike since I've had it.

1) Wouldn't recharge when I first got it due to a disconnected charge connector, stranding me at my friend Adam's house and costing me over $100 in cab and towing bills.

2) Front wheel scraped on inside of front faring, wearing completely through the fairly thick plastic in under two months from when I bought it.

3) Speedometer/Odometer slipped out from top assembly, meaning neither work anymore.

4) Front brake cable was scraping against front tire, wearing through all of the two layers of outer jacket and abrading the inner hydrolic cable

5) Consistent problems with bottoming out the shocks, hurting both the bike and my back, and likely causing most if not all of the above problems.

6) Throttle (which is actually the handle you hold onto on your right hand) broke off and literally slid off the handlebar while I was in heavy traffic. I was able to keep it working by jimmying it long enough to get home.

7) One or both rear passenger folding pedals broke off due to insufficient ground clearance.

8) The battery box on the bottom of the bike scrapes in some turns for the same reason

9) The bike would randomly cut out, generally in conditions of what could be overheating. This problem was intermittently present for about four months, but finally resulted in the controller itself dieing a few days ago, stranding me yet again. This time costs were mitigated due to [ profile] trippedbreaker's help and a near-suicidal U-Haul run where I had to have the truck back to U-Haul in less than two hours during rush hour or face a $150 fine.

I'll be mailing all of the damaged parts in question (at least those I can find) back to EVTAMERICA tomorrow. I related news, I just got a marketing announcement regarding the R-30, the "new and improved" version of the R-20. Read this and tell me it doesn't sound like "The R-20, but not broken anymore."

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