Shorting out motor or bad wire connections? Video included

Good morning(afternoon/evening) all - I was riding my board around this morning when it started to “die” on me. I’d hop off and the motor would be stuttering then might not spin at all. I thought it could have been out of juice (was riding for 30ish minutes, should go for ~an hour though).

Get home and plug it in and everything works fine - so that’s when I started the video to start pulling on wires (I swear at 1:06-1:08 so I guess NSFW?) - Also, sorry for vertical video, I know I have sinned…

You can see early on it works ok then starts to go meh, works again for awhile, but then at 1:03-1:04 it sparks - zoom in right around where the wires get close to the motor you might see a bit of yellow and a small spark sound (bzzzt?).

Is this a problem with the motor connections that I can solve? Or? This is my first foray into building anything with electronics so just trying not to get myself killed on this thing.

Could be an iffy connector or a break in the cable, or possibly a bad connection inside the motor.

If you islolate the dodgy cable first - possibly the middle one from the looks of it:

  • then hold the cable behind the connector with a finger to the deck - wiggle the cable between the connector and motor - if no issues then hold the wire the other side of the connector with your finger and do the same on the other side of the cable
  • if still no issues then hold the wire to your deck with two fingers either side of the connector and tap/wiggle the connector.

hopefully that makes sense, the idea is to isolate sections of the cable and test those

if there is a spark it must be shorting - any signs of wear in the cables? i.e. bare wires?

be real careful here or a smoked VESC is on the cards

Well shoot. Looks like the yellow wire has a small (1/4" long) scratch through the rubber coating and you can see wire =/

Something probably got up there (rock, stick) when i was carving around and possibly ripped it. can I just shrinkwrap that or do I have to swap out a wire?

Still haven’t pulled around on stuff, just noticed the cut on the rubber.

shrink wrap it - you’ll be fine.

nice easy fix - the best kind :slight_smile:

you might want to add a few bits of shrink wrap on top of each other for extra peace of mind

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Thanks - this is the “cut”. This would cause all that heartache? :persevere:

only if it’s shorting on something… looks close enough to the motor to short on the casing?

it needs fixing anyways though

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It faces the underside of the board and wouldn’t reach the casing. Does it have to short on something metal or anything organic that touches it?

I definitely plan on wrapping it up just curious at this point!

to spark it would need to be shorting or broken internally (but it doesn’t look broken).

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Landscape this time! I taped the motor to “on” so it should stay the same speed throughout. It does not…

Looks like the black wire has a bad connection between the bullet connectors. Probably a bad solder joint I’d assume. Does this sound about right?

Thanks for the help!

awesome video

my money is on a bad solder joint on the black wire connector too.

Strip off the heat shrink, reheat and add a little solder to both the connectors on that cable, add more heatshrink and it should be a done deal, or at the very least eliminate a potential failure point :slight_smile:

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my pleasure

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Sounds like a job for tonight - Thanks again for confirming! Kinda getting the hang of this whole electronics thing :wink:

those big connectors are a great way to brush up your soldering skills.

a big tip for your iron will make a huge difference (if you don’t have one already)

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Yes, a big tip and a fairly powerfull iron will make it much easier.

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If you are using the springy spinny bullets replace with solid bullets

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They are big 5.5mm connectors that I got and soldered all on. I am a novice solderer so chances are one of them broke loose!

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Iron should be powerful enough - did solder it all together to start with but possibly this was my first connector so it just hasn’t held on through all the bumps I have been hitting recently…

So looks like I wasn’t so lucky. Redid the solder joints on the black wire and it seems to still be shorting a bit. Looks to be in the motor… See video below.

How does one take it apart to diagnose? Is there a solid thread that shows internal repairs? Figure I might as well try and if it is trash I will just buy a slightly bigger motor (probably 200-230kv) or if it works then I can just wait til next year!