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Old 08-28-2012, 12:17 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Lightweight mobility scooter build

This project is about as alternative as I can think of, and it is a form of transportation, so I thought I'd post some pics of my latest project and my first attempt at an EV of any sort.
I had an idea last spring to build a lightweight, folding mobility scooter for my son, from a stand up scooter. Most mobility scooters are bulky and heavy, and even though they come apart for transport, they still take up a lot of luggage space. My design goal was to make it meet the size and weight requirements for standard luggage during air travel. I found out part way through the project that a mobility device is exempt, but I still wanted to come close. It also needed to be stable enough to ride safely. Surprisingly, I found the regulations for a mobility scooter are much less stringent than for a stand up scooter or an e-bike.
So, this is what I started with. I picked this one up as well for spare parts.
My original idea was just to add fold up stabilizers on the sides, It was supposed to be a simple project. When I started to work out how to do it though, I couldn't figure out how to build them to fold like I wanted, spring out of the way enough so the drive wheel wouldn't lose traction on uneven ground and still not give way if he was leaning the wrong way on a slope. I also found that the front of the primary scooter had been bent and straightened, but not very well. I didn't see it until after I had bought it, unfortunately (not the good deal I thought it was). I could have used it, but I hate building things that aren't right. There went simple out the window. Anyway, after exploring several different ideas, one that would have been better but I didn't have the tools to build it, I settled on a three wheeled, FWD design. Here I what I came up with.
It works pretty good, he and I both have been testing it out on vacation. I have found a few minor changes that need to be made, but the hard part is over.

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Old 08-28-2012, 08:51 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Good job!

It looks very portable & nimble. With the adjustable seat and bars even a very young child could ride it.
Could be there is a market for it, Puddlegum Electric tricycles.

A mtb suspension seat post would be pretty slick on it.
Looks like a 500 watt motor on it ? if it is, wow !
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Old 08-29-2012, 01:42 AM   #3 (permalink)
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Thanks for the support. I thought of a suspension post. It would be nice, but it doesn't allow it to collapse enough. The motor is 300 watt and it is maybe too much for it. I built a gear reduction drive to slow it down, so it has awesome torque, but it's hard not to spin the tire and it really is still too fast for a mobility scooter. I have a 250 watt motor as well which I may try instead, but it is a higher speed motor which may be worse.
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Best short trip: 2.4 l/100 km, 3.9 km
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Old 08-29-2012, 02:02 AM   #4 (permalink)
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That is a problem, the traction.

You could try a wider tread up front and put more weight on it. Place the batteries on the front upper frame, add a basket up front and keep supplies in it, and possibly raise the rear to tilt some weight onto the front tire.
Best of luck with your prototype
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Last edited by ecomodded; 08-29-2012 at 02:10 AM..
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Old 09-03-2012, 01:10 AM   #5 (permalink)
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I've added a few build pics to my gallery if anyone is interested in the process. Here is one of it folded. The suitcase is there for reference. Scooter measures 33lx12wx18h when folded and 42lx25.75wx35.5h when set up. It weighs in at 56.4lb with a 15ah Ping pack.
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Old 09-05-2012, 09:09 PM   #6 (permalink)
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I thought I had the market with HotRod wheelchairs and Handy scooters, but I guess not:
ELECTRIC "HOTROD" CUSTOM POWER CHAIR
Got the wheelie bars, stripes, checkered flag, fake tachometer- even a clock; but this one on Craigslist does REAL wheelies!
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Old 09-24-2012, 11:49 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Gone "This posting has expired." Sorry 'bout that!

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