Introduction: Electric Mountain Board

Picture of Electric Mountain Board

The goal was an electric conversion with minimum damage to the board and the ability to remove the system for standard riding.

Step 1: Parts and Tools

Picture of Parts and Tools

I tried to get as many parts as I could locally but most had to be ordered online. The prices are approximately what I paid. Total cost of the project not including the board was about: $350

Board: MBS Core 95 from MBS Mountainboards. $300

Brakes: MBS V5 Brake Kit also from MBS Mountainboards. $60

Motor: 24V 300W Electric scooter motor from my local scooter shop. $30

Sprocket and Chain: Scooter sprocket and #25 chain also from my local scooter shop. $20

Steel pieces: 16ga sheet steel, perforated square tube (14ga), perforated bar and two flat bars (14ga) from Lowes. $20

The batteries, charger, controller and throttle were all ordered from Monster Scooter Parts.

Batteries: Two 12V 10 Ah scooter batteries. $65

Charger: 24V 1.6 Amp XLR Battery Charger and XLR charging socket. $38

Controller: 24V 500W Universal Voltage and Speed Controller. $33

Throttle: Generic 4-wire thumb throttle. $13

Other parts: Wire, electrical tape, wire connectors, nuts and bolts, zip ties, tie down straps. $35

Tools Used:
Socket set
Adjustable wrenches
Hex key wrenches
Drill and bits
Jigsaw and blades
Metal files
Wire stripper
Chainbreaker - $30 from Monster Scooter Parts

Step 2: Mounting the Sprocket

Picture of Mounting the Sprocket

The MBS brake system comes with the mounting hardware (screws and spacers) needed to mount the sprocket to the wheel.

I used the pattern from the brake rotor to drill holes for the mounting screws into the sprocket. The initial holes were then widened to allow the mounting screws to sit flush against the sprocket.

Step 3: Installing the Support Bar

Picture of Installing the Support Bar

After measuring from the rear foot strap bolt I cut a notch in the support bar big enough to fit over the truck. The sides are bent up to create the gap. The left flap should be removed to make room for the brakes later.

A longer bolt the same size as the foot strap bolt is used to connect the support bar to the board. Rubber washers and padding are used to prevent scratching.

The upper bar and lower bracket were installed so that they did not scratch the board or interfere with the future position of the motor. The upper bar is solid steel to prevent bending at the notch and the lower bracket is perforated steel allowing it to more easily be bent around the truck.

Step 4: Mounting the Motor

Picture of Mounting the Motor

Using the sheet steel I cut a rectangle so that it could be bolted to the support bar with enough room for the motor to fit between the two bolts.

The motor was then positioned on the sheet to align the two sprockets and the holes were marked for the motor mounting bolts. Once drilled the holes were lengthened to allow minor adjustment of the chain tension.

Two pieces of solid steel bar were drilled and used as brackets to lock the motor to the support bar.

Step 5: Wiring, Throttle and Batteries

Picture of Wiring, Throttle and Batteries

The controller comes with a paper describing the connectors and wire colors. Most controllers are similar and this diagram shows a good example of connector wiring: Controller wiring diagram

The only difficulty was with the throttle which had 4 wires but only 3 on the controller. After some testing the 4th wire was used as a power on indicator and I connected it to the red wire of the power light connector.

Using pin connectors and female blade connectors I replaced the originals and added an on/off switch in place of the key connector. (I also transferred the labels to the new connectors)

The motor wiring had to be reversed to make the motor run counter clockwise so the board would not run backwards.

The thumb throttle was placed on the end of the brake handle after removing a rubber cap. The throttle wires were then fed down through the handle and sleeve following the brake cable.

Two 12V scooter batteries are wired in series to provide 24V to the controller and mounted to the middle of the board using small tie down straps. This PDF file is very helpful and shows how to wire the batteries: Battery Wiring Diagrams

Step 6: Brakes

Picture of Brakes

The brake installation instructions and parts descriptions can be seen in this PDF: V5 Brake Manual

The brakes were installed according to the instructions provided with very little modification. The sprocket is used in place of one of the brake rotors and the cap that tightens the left brake pad had to be replaced to provide more room for the arm to move.

The controller is attached to the deck at the spot where the brake leash is normally connected.

Step 7: The Chain and Finishing Touches

Picture of The Chain and Finishing Touches

Once everything is together the chain can be broken down and sized to fit. Chain tension is very important or the chain pops off whenever you try to turn.

This was the most difficult part of the whole project. A lot of trial and error was used to get the tension correct. I tried several ways to keep the tension even including using springs and rollers but in the end found it was easiest to just keep the chain short and tight.

When measuring the chain to take out links you have to stand on the deck because the weight of the rider pushes down on the support bar and moves the motor closer to the sprocket.

Finishing up:
I used zip ties to keep all of the wires neat and put the battery wires inside the Velcro for the foot strap to keep everything out of the way. I also put a furniture cap on the end of the support bar to cover the sharp edges.

Step 8: Project Notes

Here is a short video of the board in action.

Total time to put this together was about two days and then several more getting the chain tension just right.

I'm not sure of the battery duration or range but I have ridden it for up to 45 minutes without having to charge it.

If I had it to do all over I think that I would have made it just a bit faster. Its still fun the way it is though.


Kreepymidget (author)2015-11-24

So I'm biulding an electric mountainboard with 2 motors. Trying to figure out the pros and cons of a dual rear wheel setup or if I want the motors kitty coroner. Any help?

gthon95 (author)Kreepymidget2016-11-16

Go for the 4 wheel drive set-up!

iMAZET made it! (author)Kreepymidget2016-01-07

Hi, can help you out with the drive system that will bolt straight on to a Hypa hub we I sell all the parts necessary to convert a MTB board to 2WD or 1WD electric. Check or send me a message cheers Andy.

Kreepymidget (author)2015-08-03

I'm looking at making an electric mountainboard and I'm just wondering what a round about top speed will be. As far as I can remember I am using 2 12v 7ah 250w batteries, motor rpm of 2600 - 2850, 11tooth motor sprocket, 80 tooth rear sprocket with 8in wheels.

iMAZET (author)2015-06-04

I am looking at making a electric skateboard/ electric mountain board, these guys
have the parts I need, I am not sure whether I am going to buy one of there conversion kits or just some of the other parts they sell. I'll have to work out what I want first. There board convert E MTB mountain boards to 2wd 7.2 hp. I don't think these company is fully stocked yet but they said they would be in a few weeks when I called them. Hope this was helpful to anyone looking for a conversion like me. :)

PaoloC2 (author)2015-01-26

i embraced the challenge and started too!!!
i got a core95X and 1000w system

i m having just a problem with sprocket.
as i m dividing brakes and engine system, i don t have the brake platter to drill.
my rims are the classic mbs ones with 3 screws and they don t really fit the sprocket screws.
would it be better to forge a metal platter of half cm, to have a spacer as well?
or i dunno if there are any good ideas for this and the engine mount... :/

nediffs (author)2014-08-08

I'm thinking of making this but a bit different. Using this board + the breaks (Are you sure all i need is the breaks and a drill to mount the sprocket ?) And then using similar setup to yours to mount 2x500w (scouter, reversible) motors on the back. This would be enclosed in tight box, and somewhere near my back foot there would be batteries to allow bigger range(+ the ones on the middle). Any thoughts?

What is your current avg. range in miles/km (give or take a few) ?

Vurp (author)nediffs2014-08-13

All I used to mount the sprocket was the brake kit plates as a template and a drill. Sounds like it should go pretty fast. I haven't used my board in quite awhile and never calculated an average range but the higher the amp hours on the batteries the more range you will get.

instructableduke (author)2014-06-18

Does it even steer?

Vurp (author)instructableduke2014-06-19

It steers but not as well as it did without the motor. Turning around requires a larger area.

The Expert Noob (author)2013-02-15

Progress so far. I removed the sheath that housed the cable for the breaks and replaced it with a cable guard. I tethered the handle bar to the board with some 550 para-cord. I have mounted the motor to the truck and its surprisingly sturdy. I haven't gotten a chain and sprocket or mounted the motor control. 1000w setup.

Update: the worst part of this project is finding the right chain (in my case 05T which is what came on the motor) I've already spent ~$40 in sprocket and chain. It may come down to spending another $40 to get a chain/sprocket set from a motorcycle/scooter store. I have no scooter stores around here, its all dirt bikes.

chopstx (author)2011-09-09

Great idea, now im hooked after watching videos on youtube of these things.... :)

I have a lot of questions tho before i start spending money on the wrong stuff.

Is your setup 1 wheel drive? Do you need 2 motors(one on each wheel) and 4 batteries to make 2wd version? Wouldnt the board always turn with 1wd?

Would a Atom 90 be suitable for this?

If I am 140 pounds could i get away with a 400 watt motor? And still have good torque and speed? This would just be used for going around the neighborhood and on trails, not legit mountain boarding.

any way I can use a lever handle for throttle?

Thanks alot and great 'ible!

Vurp (author)chopstx2011-09-10

It is one wheel drive and I have never noticed any turning.
The MBS Atom 90 board should work fine.
Depending on how fast you want to go I would try to get the biggest motor you can afford, a 400 watt will get you around but wont be super fast.
The throttle on this is electric so if you mean a lever throttle that uses a tension wire to control speed it wont work with this setup.
Good luck on your build.

chopstx (author)Vurp2011-09-10

thanks! do you have any experience using rc motors and esc's instead of scooter stuff?

Vurp (author)chopstx2011-09-12

Never used those but I have looked at some of the other builds that have them and they seem to work really well.

chopstx (author)Vurp2011-09-12

Yeah I think that if they will electronically work together, I would like to use a 750 watt scooter motor with a rc esc and controller.

I still have some research to do so if anybody that sees this has tips, tricks, or info that could help me build an electric mountainboard, I would greatly appreciate it!

The Expert Noob (author)chopstx2013-02-07

RC ESCs are three pin/output where as scooter motors are only two. This is because RC motors (brushless I assume) are different in making than Scooter motors. an ESC with a scooter motor just wont work. Look at my other post where I got my scooter motor kit. Im waiting for it to come in the mail. Once its done, I'll post pictures and a video of it.

evanwehrer (author)2012-09-28

How much does this weigh?

Vurp (author)evanwehrer2012-09-29

The batteries and motor are somewhat heavy I would say it weighs about 20-25 pounds.

The Expert Noob (author)2012-09-02

As soon as I can get some money saved up, I'm going try this out on my MBS Atom 90 board. I've already bought and installed the braking system. Now I'm trying to come up with a mounting plan to work around the brakes.

Do ya think 1000w might be a bit overkill? Im a 6ft 3in, 220lb guy, so Im just at the weight limit for this particular board. I've done some down hill and some jumps before I installed the brakes to see how it does. It hasn't broken yet.

Vurp (author)The Expert Noob2012-09-03

I think having more power is better even if you don't need it. You can always use less throttle if it is too fast. Not having enough power will mean slow speeds and more hassle to change.

TSC (author)2012-04-11

This is awsome! My brother would like to build some like this!

he who crashes often (author)2012-03-29

awesome! i made something kinda similar-ish to this, but i used a longboard and i didn't want to have to go to the trouble to build a drive train (i have fairly little time, as i have a 3 hour commute to school every day, and sailing team practice 3 days a week) so i used a 60 amp 12 volt (720 watts) brushless motor and a propeller. i mounted a 9" long piece of 2x4 on the back sticking up, and mounted the motor and propeller (in a pusher configuration) on that. i run it off a 3,000mah, 12 volt lithium polymer battery, and an rc speed controller. i control it using the r/c system i use on my rc planes, but it would work fine with the $20 radio available at hobbyking. below i have links to where i got the supplies. it takes a while to accelerate (0-20mph in 29 seconds lolol) and can't climb hills, but it's great fun on the flat just cruising around town, just be careful to shut off the throttle when passing people so as not to cut their feet off.
parts used:
speed controller

radio (not the one i used, but much cheaper, and better for this application):

chopstx (author)2012-02-04

If possible, could you provide a close up of the drive wheel with the sprocket? I want to see how you mounted the sprocket. Thanks!

Vurp (author)chopstx2012-02-05

I couldn't find a close up, but I used the hardware from the MBS V5 Brake Kit and drilled holes in the sprocket that matched the brake kits rotor. The hardware is basically a spacer and bolt that lifts the rotor away from the wheel.

chopstx (author)Vurp2012-02-15

Ok so do you think I would need the brake kit to drill the holes or could i just drill them based off of how I need to attatch it to the wheel?

Vurp (author)chopstx2012-02-20

You could do it without the brake kit if all you wanted was the sprocket mounted to the wheel, i think it would just take some good measuring to get it centered.

DustySeven7 (author)2012-02-16

you can use RC batteries, you have to wire them in series and then a parallel.
These guys took a electric longboard using CIM motor.

here is the battery they used

the battery wiring is on step four
if you wanted to use the motors they used look at step 5 and 6

randymonster (author)2011-12-15

i built one of these and have two more frames welded would anyone want to buy a complete 24volt 900watt version on a steel frame?

WillERoberts (author)2011-10-07

this is probably a stupid question but i ride goofy ( right foot foward) so if i buil this would i need the motor on the otherside e.g rear wheel drive?

Vurp (author)WillERoberts2011-10-11

Yes the motor would be on the other side. You can also reverse the foot straps I think.

WillERoberts (author)Vurp2011-10-11


mountainboardpro (author)2011-04-30

do u know of a way to make the board go 20 mph without raising the price to much?

Vurp (author)mountainboardpro2011-05-03

The higher the wattage of the motor the faster it will go but if you have to buy the motor that also increases the price.

mountainboardpro (author)2011-04-30

Hey, Vurp
do u know if a 24 volt baterie would work instead of 2 12 volts and would it affect the speed and the other parts?

Vurp (author)mountainboardpro2011-05-03

One 24V battery would work the same as two 12V as long as that is the voltage your system is setup for. Also the higher the amp hour on the battery the longer the charge.

shadowman2 (author)2010-08-30

How about putting a 300 watt(low rpm) motor on each wheel (yay for 4x4!!) And 20 laptop li-ion batteries underneath the board. This would be pricey, but the looks and power.. Maybe even a large capacitor as Bowmaster suggested (for double power at startup, since the motors would be direct-drive to the wheel. I wanna build this three years from now when i return to Canada.

shadowman2 (author)shadowman22010-08-30

Or maybe 2 1kw motors on each axle with chains!

mnbouchet (author)shadowman22010-10-25

This has already been done :D :

Can't even begin to grasp how awesome this is....

KommieCid (author)mnbouchet2010-11-28

Your link seems to be malfunctioning sir/madam, it may require revising

mnbouchet (author)KommieCid2010-11-28

You seem to be correct :D Here's a working one:

enjoy, the guy who has made the board posted other videos ;)

sheen110 (author)2010-09-10

hi vurp, could you help ,me out here ? iv damaged the thumb throttle when dismantling it and dont have a clue how it was wired

inside it has blue, orange,yellow and red
orange and yellow are contected fine and it lights up but red blue and white are cut. would you be able to remember how its supposed to be . ? i havethe same throttle as you.


Vurp (author)sheen1102010-09-12

I never fully dismantled my throttle so if you mean on the inside Im not sure where they go.

nitram135 (author)2010-04-24

 I have 2 12 volt batteries that are in series that i want to connect to a 24 volt controller but when the controller touches the battery, i get a lot of sparks. Does any1 know why?

inventor1995 (author)nitram1352010-08-05

The leads in the connector may be bent and could be touching the two polarities of the battery together causing a short circuit.

slivka (author)nitram1352010-05-17

Make sure you got the polarity right.  Also if the batteries are discharged the can draw a lot of current at the begging.  

SystemZERO (author)2008-04-15

What's the top speed on this beast?

Vurp (author)SystemZERO2008-04-15

Doing the gear and motor calculations top speed is about 10-11mph or 18-19kmh which seems about right. I have been thinking about ways to increase this without spending too much more.

About This Instructable




More by Vurp:Electric Mountain Board
Add instructable to: