How to Convert a Hoverboard Into an Electric Go Kart

Introduction: How to Convert a Hoverboard Into an Electric Go Kart

WARNING: IN THIS PROJECT YOU WILL DEAL WITH HIGH TORQUE MOTORS. MAKE SURE THAT ALL THE SAFETY MEASURES ARE RESPECTED. THE HOLDERS AND/OR OTHER PARTIES PROVIDE THE PROGRAM "AS IS" WITHOUT WARRANTY OF ANY KIND. THE ENTIRE RISK AS TO THE QUALITY AND PERFORMANCE OF THE PROGRAM IS WITH YOU.

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In this project, I show you how to build a nice Electric Kart (I call it Hovercar) from a Hoverboard. This Hovercar can reach speeds of up 25 km/h with standard settings or up to 40 km/h with Field weakening activated. For enthusiasts, it is a great platform to learn about electric mobility, programming, control design and electronics.

The kart is responsive and drives very nicely. High torque and fast response even at low speed. What is nice in this project is that the parts were not modified irreversibly, making possible to restore the hoverboard and the kart back to their initial factory functionality.

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Supplies

Step 1: Preparing the Kart

First, we need to prepare the kart by removing:

- the rear wheels and axle and

- the pedals including the chain mechanism

Since we will keep the rear brake system, some of the kart screws will be re-used to attach the hoverboard. It is a good advice to store all the removed components from the kart in the case you want to revert the kart back to its original shape.

Step 2: Attach the Hoverboard

The kart is mounted on top of the hoverboard. The key of this mounting is a U shaped bracket that I made from an aluminium straight bar.

On each side, the U shaped bracket is secured with 4 M5 screws. 2 screws to secure the bracket to the hoverboard and 2 screws to secure the bracket to the kart.

From plywood we can cut the floor of the kart. To ease the process, use a piece of cardboard to get the shape and dimensions right. Use the cardboard shape as a template to cut the plywood as shown in the picture.

Once the plywood shape is ready I glued few reinforcement pieces under the kart for extra strength. Finally, I painted the plywood in black.

Step 3: Connect All the Electronics

In this step, add all the necessary electronics:

- add the hoverboard electronics and battery

- connect the pedals

- add buttons and LEDs

- add connectors for mainboard flashing and sideboard flashing

For more details regarding the pinouts, check out my Github repository:

https://github.com/EmanuelFeru/hoverboard-firmware...

Step 4: Flash the Firmware

To get the code, go to my Github repository and the download the firmware. Then, open Visual studio Code, uncomment Variant Hovercar, and Click build and Upload.

Firmware Mainboard:
https://github.com/EmanuelFeru/hoverboard-firmware...

Firmware Sideboard:

https://github.com/EmanuelFeru/hoverboard-sideboar...

https://github.com/EmanuelFeru/hoverboard-sideboar...

Step 5: We Are Done!

Some tips on usage:

  • Calibrate the pedals limits: long press of the Power button (> 5 sec) to enter the auto-calibration of the ADC limits. Move the pedals to its limits. Once finished press the power button to confirm or wait 20 sec for the timeout. The limits will be stored in the memory, so you only have to perform this one time.
  • Pedals: Right is Throttle, Left is Brake
  • Double tapping on the Brake pedal engages reverse driving

Enjoy!

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    3 Comments

    0
    HenkB16
    HenkB16

    Question 1 year ago on Step 2

    Hi there, great work. Nice to build on a sunday afternoon. I missed somethings. Did you use both sideboards and with the same code? Where did you connect the pedals? Are these 10k potentiometers and the voltage reduced to 3,3 V?

    0
    aerdronix
    aerdronix

    Answer 1 year ago

    Hi, I am happy to hear that you like the project.
    - I only used one sideboard connected to the Right sensor cable (the one next to the mainboard)
    - the pedals are connected to the Left sensor cable (ADC1 - Brake, ADC2 - Throttle)
    - the pedals potentiomenters resistance are 10k, but more other can also work because they work as voltage dividers.
    - the supply power for the pots is 3.3V taken from the SWD programming port. Do NOT use the sensor cable power because it carries 15V!
    - please also check my Github repository because many details are in the ReadMe or in the code (specifically config.h) for the VARIANT_HOVERCAR.

    Let me know if the project was successful for you! :I hope you will enjoy it )