The author of this article is Paul Alting van Geusau, Summer 2017, Munich, Germany
When introducing their Orange Innergy e-Bike (about 2007) in the Netherlands it was, despite its price (about 2199 €), a Gazelle best seller until numerous problems threw doubt on the quality of the electric drive system. Apparently the dealers were unable to solve the problems and many furious buyers wanted their money back. In later models a number of the problems were taken care of by Gazelle but the disastrous Gazelle crises management resulted in many buyers avoiding Gazelle products, see this video: https://radar.avrotros.nl/uitzendingen/gemist
In itself a well-designed product, the bike suffered from a number of issues and it appears that the Gazelle management relied too much on their component suppliers without carrying out sufficient in-house product evaluation beforehand. Furthermore, in an attempt to avoid theft, the battery number had to be programmed in the controller before the bike could be used. An absolute nuisance because this could only be done by a dealer with Gazelle software and no other battery, for example from another Gazelle bike, could be used temporarily to check whether the problem was the battery or not, and in case of a battery problem, get home. Luckily in later models this idea was abandoned. Other issues causing a lot of irritation were defective pedal force sensors, broken supply cables, bad batteries and rain water entering the display and controller.
The Gazelle bike itself is well made and runs quite comfortably so it is really a pity that its positive properties were overshadowed by the failure of some electric parts. Interesting, many of these early bikes are now for sale on EBay for very reasonable prices and with some knowledge and effort these bikes can easily be modified with readily available pars to become reliable and simple to service e-Bikes. Furthermore you will then be fully independent from the dealers, which is a great plus if you live abroad where no Gazelle dealers are around... Again one asks him or herself why Gazelle made the error to rely too much on dealers which for the majority not only proved incapable of solving the problems but, in particular outside of the Netherlands, are not available in sufficient numbers: an amazing short-sighted attitude for this otherwise renowned company.
I own two Gazelle Innergy e-Bikes which, if taken care of, run (no rain please...) quite reliably up till now. However, not wanting to be the victim of the problems encountered by others I decided to build an e-Bike with a Gazelle motor and readily over the counter available controller and display to be able to repair my Gazelle bikes later if these problems might arrive. From the list below it can be derived what is needed to modify a push bike to become an e-Bike with Gazelle motor. I also tried the Gazelle battery in that system and that works fine too (no programming of the battery number necessary....). The controller and display are of Chinese manufacture and a number of additional features are provided which can easily be programmed with use of the display. The KT LCD3 controller computer is one of the most commonly used in the e-Bike and e-Bike conversion market today and for good reason. It offers the user a lot of control and flexibility over the functions on their bike. It controls 20 important functions on your bike from maximum speed to pedal assist. With this control there is no need to go to a dealer for every simple modification or tuning. The only difficulty I encountered was the 9-pole Gazelle motor male connector because no female connector was available. I used the readily available 9–pole connector pair (see picture part 9 below) and thus had to open the motor and replace the cable with its male connector. Not a simple task. However when modifying a Gazelle bike the original connectors are both there so no need for such modification. For programming of the controller a number of motor parameter must be known. These parameters are not provided by Gazelle. The most important are:
P1: 87 P2: 2 P5: 0
Below is the controller diagram with clear indications of all the electrical connections to be made:
The colour coding of hall sensor wires in the motor hub represents almost that of the standard colour coding. The only difference: the speed sensor has a brown cable which is white for the controller:
Have a look here for "How to program the KT-LCD3 Electric Bike Computer. 20 e-Bike functions":
Instruction manuals can be downloaded from the Internet: Short: http://cangoo.nl/wp-content/uploads/2017/05/handleiding_lcd_scherm.pdf
The total costs of parts was about 550€, but when modifying a Gazelle Innergy e-Bike only the controller, display and pedal assistant sensor (which replaces the pedal force sensor) as well as some extra connectors are needed.
Gazelle Innergy frontwheel with motorhub and roller brake (EBay 70€)
Gazelle frontfork (exchange necessary because of larger width of the Gazelle motorhub) (Marktplaats Nederland 50€)
Pedal Assistant Sensor for e-Bike Electric Bike Conversion Kit Electric Bicycle Pedelec Sensor 8 Magnets (3.80 €, amazon.de)
Silver Electric Bicycle 24V 36V 200W 250W 350W 20A Brushless DC Regenerative Function e-Bike Controller (39 €, amazon.de)
E-Bike Intelligent LCD Control Panel LCD Screen (KT LCD3 Display) for 24 V 36 V 48 V Controller (39 €, Amazon.de)
Brake handles with switches (EBay 24€)
Throttle (EBay 5,99 €)
Luggage carrier with battery (36V 10.47Ah, 240€ EBay)
Cables and connectors (http://www.i-ee.info/e-Bike/e-Bike-stecker-kabel/, 50€)
LED Lamp and Stand (16+10 € EBay)
Gazelle batteries come in different capacities:
At least the gold or platinum batteries give a reasonable range because the actual distance capability of all these batteries approaches more the "high range" Km values. Eco range is a mere theoretical value. The original Gazelle Batteries are quite expensive (Bronze 399€, Silver 479€, Gold 549 € and Platinum 739€) and there is no proof that they last any longer than other, more reasonably priced Li-Ion e-Bike batteries. So when your Gazelle battery needs replacement it is better to replace the internals with 18650 cells which some companies do. Result: better capacity for a lower price! (https://akkuplus.de/Akkupack-fuer-Gazelle-Orange-Innergy-Chamonix-Innergy-998002300-36-VoltLi-Ion-zum-Selbsteinbau) Or replace the entire luggage carrier and battery for another one if the Chinese controller is installed. On EBay: 36 Volt 17Ah Battery with charger for 315 €:
Pictures of the bike