Meepo Classic 2.1

I don’t think the Meepo Classic 2 needs any improvement, it’s a great board and it’s a shame they don’t sell it any more. The board cruises nice at 43 km/h, smooth acceleration and braking, coasts forever, not too heavy, can lift the nose without scraping the tail; for me it’s the perfect commuter board. I was getting close to 45-50km of range by goosing the throttle then coasting. One of the benefits of hubs over belts is less drivetrain friction. To me, performance is range. Speed and acceleration matter, but range is king and what I wanted to improve on what was already great range.

The classic 2 battery enclosure provides ample room for larger batteries and I think I’ve maxed that out with this build. I was going to cycle the stock 378Wh battery until it died, the replace with a new larger 36v system from https://chibatterysystems.com/ until I came across this 12S battery, FOR FREE!. So, my plans changed. I’m going to jamb this massive battery into the Classis 2 and call it the Classic 2.1.

The Meepo hubs won’t take 12s, so I had to get new 600W units from Backfire. The Meepo ESC won’t take 12s, so I bought a Focbox. The rest is spit and polish.

Battery

The stock battery is 378Wh, 36V, with a max discharge of 24A. The new battery will be 639Wh, 44.4V with a max discharge north of 30A (specs are unsure). I will set the max discharge to 30A on the focbox.

The battery I’ll be using was free because it was broken. The issue presented like a loose wire so I connected the charger and moved the battery around and watched for the charging light to change colour, red meaning the loop was closed and the battery was charging, green meaning the loop had opened tricking the charger into thinking the charging cycle was over. Through trial and error, I narrowed the break down to a nickel strip, which had almost torn through. A bit of solder and it was fixed.

I wrapped the battery in vinyl and did a poor job of it. New battery weight is 2820g which is 1119g more than the original.

Deck I no longer wanted the enclosure fasteners to poke through the deck and be visible through the grip tape. I bought some 4M threaded inserts, installed them, and capped the top with epoxy so the new deck tape would be nice and smooth.

I trimmed the nose and tail of the deck so it lines up with the trucks. I like this look but it means the deck no longer stands on its tail without leaning further back.

I sanded the underside of the deck, applied some black paint, clearcoat, then finished with two colours of vinyl to match the lettering and colour scheme on the enclosure and then now grey Backfire wheels. Much of it will be covered by the enclosure, but I like it and the vinyl will provide a bit of protection from chipping and is replaceable. To finish it off I ordered new Meepo grip tape as I want this board to still read as a Meepo.

Drivetrain The backfire hubs are the 600W versions, with MR30 connectors. I had to swap the power connectors out for the larger MR60S ones that came with the focbox. I’m not sure what kind of JST connectors the Backfire hubs use, but I was able to trim some plastic to make them fit the Focbox 6 pin hall sensor connections. The new hubs are 676g lighter than stock. Reducing unsprung weight is always good and, in this case, shaving almost 1.5lbs off the rear drivetrain alone.

Heatsink The custom heatsink wasn’t necessary, but I was never a fan of the original as it was flat and boring. For the new heat sink I had the slots cut into a 6mm thick piece of aluminum on a waterjet. I then located and drilled all the holes as well as filed in scalloped reliefs on the trailing end of each slot. The heat sink is made up of three parts and screws together with aluminum 3M screws. It’s overkill, but I think it signals there’s something big going on under the hood.

Enclosure At first glance the enclosure had some holes that needed some sealing up. There was no sealant around the motor wires and holes in what I assume were meant to be light bars. Some dust had gotten inside, nothing major though. Inside the enclosure I didn’t need to do much but shave off a few bits of plastic to accommodate the longer battery. The plastic enclosure “lid” needed to be cut to accommodate the thicker battery and focbox and the corresponding cuts made in the foam gasket.

to be continued…

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Wow maybe you will be actually able to push the throttle now!

haha I kinda want a video of you hypermiling the new board.

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Very impressive.

yeah I will expand on the top speed but not by much. my goal will be setting the throttle curve to try and match the Classic 2 ESC. I’m not too keen on pushing 50km/h on these harder PU wheels. On the bike paths I use to get to work I rarely max the current speed anyway. My goal really is to add range and increase the intervals between charges.

some progress. Felt the board needed some more vinyl. I’m thinking the flat black vinyl against the shiny plastic enclosure with be stealthy enough.

The enclosure layout is tight. The lid and foam gasket had to be cut to accommodate the depth of the battery. The lid now helps index the battery and, along with two sided tape, will keep the battery secure.

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What are your thoughts on the Backfire hubs vs the Meepo hubs? Thinking of getting a set myself but having trouble deciding.

I’ve only had the chance to bench test the Backfires so I can only comment on their initial quality, which is good. The PU is harder than the meepos, I believe 80A instead of 78A. Max current is 30A, max braking is 20A.

If you’re going with a 10S 36V setup, then I’d get the meepos. Inexpensive, proven, reliable, and parts are readily available. My build required 12S hubs, and the options are limited and the backfires are the only version I could find with the appropriate hall sensor connectors. I know Backfire is changing their motor connector from the MR30 to a 5 or 6 pin quick swap connector which, as far as I’m aware, makes them incompatible with the Focbox ESC. So after a certain date backfire will no longer be selling the version I bought.

I’m going to be moving my meepo hubs and ESC to another board with an even bigger 10S battery than what the classic 2 enclosure can handle.