View Full Version : Brushless Motors

09-24-2005, 02:53 AM
Why are they so expensive. especially when you see how cheap most brushed motors are? Can they be that costly to manufacture?

09-24-2005, 05:33 AM
Try the BalsaProducts line. You can get brushless and speed cotnrol for under $50 now. www.balsapr.com (http://www.balsapr.com) I refuse to pay over $50 for any motor combo now.

09-24-2005, 08:53 PM
You get what you pay for.

09-24-2005, 09:30 PM
Yes, thats right. No need to pay extra for a name.

09-24-2005, 11:56 PM
Or buy a kit and make it yourself starting from 10 bucks :)

Matt Kirsch
09-25-2005, 01:22 AM
Take into account that a brushless motor will last practically forever if not abused, compared to a brushed motor that might last 50 flights even if you baby it...

09-25-2005, 02:23 AM
Thanks for the replys. TopFoam--I have checked balsapr.com. What I need (about 30 oz of thrust) costs around 50 bucks for just the motor. So far no one has really explained why they cost so much. If its just supply and demand, I'm thinking maybe its time to go into business making discount brushless motors. If I could make and sell them for half the price everyone else is charging, I could get rich in no time.

09-25-2005, 02:42 AM
Check GWSexpert.com. The EP brushless motors are very reasonable and I love my outrunner.:D

flypaper 2
09-25-2005, 02:46 AM
Buy a 10 dollar gobrushless motor, wind it yourself, glue in the magnets, etc. Charge a livable labor rate and you'd be lucky to be able to buy a balony sandwich:D

09-25-2005, 04:29 AM
Yes, they brushless for that thrust is going to be alot more. But, your still getting ripped off. Once the volume goes up, we should be able to get better prices.

10-07-2005, 03:05 AM
Brushless motors (like everything else sell at the market price, not the cost).
Lots of new suppliers have entered the market in the last year and prices are coming down fast. That is what should be happening if the parts and assembly of a brushless motor are actually less expensive than a brushed motor. Brushed motors are very cheap because the volumn is supported by large non RC markets. If that happens with brushless motors prices will eventually get even lower than brushed motors. The avialability of sensorless controllers for brushless motors at reasonable prices has really opened the market up. And the price of controllers is also coming down fast. Unfortunately, the cost of a brushless controller will always be higher than the cost of a brushed motor controller.

That does not mean the folks in the business are getting rich, it means they are making enough that they want to grow. To do that today, you have to keep improving product and driving cost out. You have to be willing to invest in new product when you still have a warehouse and supply system loaded with last years product. Good suppliers will make a good return, but many mediocre suppliers will be broke and out of business in a few years.

10-07-2005, 05:23 AM
you could wait until prices drop if they do

10-07-2005, 04:12 PM
Who can wait?

10-07-2005, 05:16 PM
With the plethora of new motors as mentioned, the price will continue to lessen. This is not a cheap hobby/addiction by any stretch, so I just plan to spend accordingly. If you go boating/fishing....look at the cost of a gallon of marine fuel for example ;)

10-07-2005, 11:10 PM
whats marine fuel, last time I checked it was just fuel.

10-07-2005, 11:44 PM
whats marine fuel, last time I checked it was just fuel.

Fuel bought at the marina, which costs lot more then regular pump gas.

Friend has a cottage on a lake which has a gas station with both pumps at the road and a pump at the dock. The pump at the dock is always 50 to 75 more then the pumps at the road even though they draw off the same tank. :rolleyes:

10-08-2005, 05:06 PM

Does anyone know of a vendor other than Dynamics Unlimited that offers a single cell LiPo brushless motor.

Thanks for any help,

Glynn ..

10-08-2005, 08:38 PM

Does anyone know of a vendor other than Dynamics Unlimited that offers a single cell LiPo brushless motor.

Thanks for any help,

Glynn .. No, but you could wind your own. Using STRONG (http://www.strongrcmotors.com) Parts of course:D

10-10-2005, 05:08 PM
Hey now,
A good question; "Why do BL motors cost so much more than brushed motors?"
First, look at the comon brushed motor; *Cheap* ferrite magnets (very low draw, high chance of degausing), cheap oilite bronze bushings instead of nifty ball bearings, cheap machine wound armatures, pot metal cans.
Mabushi cranks them out by the *millions*, Johnson does likewise.

Now look at the "uncommon" brushed motor; Astro flight. Nifty cobalt magnets, high quality ball bearings, *hand wound* armatures, anodized aluminum case, pre broken in (Astro runs each motor for two hours before they box it up), pre tuned. Astro cranks out hundreds of these a year.
Not cheap, very high quality. These days many brushless motors are cheaper

Brushless motors. Just like Astro brushed motors, they use expensive magnets (rare earth type), good ball bearings, high grade metals for the can, stator, shaft etc. *Some* motors can be machine wound; out runners and a *few* slotless inrunners, but the majority of inrunners at least are still hand wound. Untill Hacker found a way to do it *all* bl motors were hand wound and soldered. Then they spin balance the motors, also by hand.
These companies crank them out by the hundreds each year.

Labor costs! It takes time to wind a motor properly, balance the motor, and in the case of inrunners set the windings in the can properly.

Now you can get a Czech built motor fairly cheaply, note the Axi line, or
from China; Himax, Faigao, CEM, E-flite, etc. But those folks are earning up to a whole dollar an hour! In some cases in China even less, as little as
twenty cents an hour for prison labor...

You want to go into business making "cheap" brushless motors?
Go for it dude. If you buy a kit how long does it take you to glue in the
magnets? This includes aligning the magnets ie spacing and proper poles.
How long to wind the stator? Attatch the magnets to the shaft/can? Solder all the bits together and balance the thing?

I'm slow, I admit it, it takes me about an hour to build one of these little
motors. To build one of the size and power of say, an E-flite 370, the partscost will be around twenty five dollars? An hour of labor, plus packaging, marketing, shipping, IRS's cut, time away from *my* models, family, friends,other job, etc. and my bottom line; cheap motors.
Now you need to make a thousand of them *exactly* the same (yawn).
Not only that, but you're not any cheaper at point of sale:eek:

You end up working for a dollar an hour (if you're lucky).
And prolly quit the biz within a year or two. Look at the other micro
companies that have done model business
The old addage; "How do you make a small fortune in {model} aviation?
Start with a large one".
P.S. I don't want to stop you, but look seriously at what goes into one of these motors and multiply that by hundreds or thousands if things take off and look seriously at what such a business would do to your life.

10-11-2005, 02:10 PM
Granted, brushless motors have come down in cost. Except for maybe Mega. Their 16/15/4 motors (actually all of them) used to be around $70.
Now they are over $80. Seems this size and larger have actually gone up.
The smaller outrunners have come down a bit.
What grabs me is the high cost of lipoly packs. TP 2100 3S over $70.
These packs to me are still 30% or more too high. You get one pack for your model. Whoopee!!!! 1 flight so you have to wait an hour or more to charge up. Naturally, your gonna want more than 1 pack. So, you get a couple more. So now your at over $210 just in the battery packs.
I bought 6 lipoly packs over the summer. Had to get a 2nd mortgage on the house to do it.


10-11-2005, 02:51 PM
Well suppose it is all you are willing to spend. At one time matched hand build nicad packs were expensive. But 6 years ago now we purchased 4 packs that are still working fine today. Likewise a lipo by thunderpower has been on our shockflyer for a year and a half and shows no signs of wear. It isn't even the newer version. As a matter of fact they don't even make that capacity anymore.

If you fly glow fuel you will pay 16 to 20 dollars a gallon and use up, if your an avid flyer, over 120 dollars of fuel in a flying season if not more. And fuel is not coming down. Again in fuel you get what you pay for like you do batteries.

Supply and demand has a lot to do with the pricing of products. It will be hard to compete with the overseas market to build these brushless motors. Our labor cost are getting ready to make a huge leap. I know I can't make a living on a dollar an hour. Being self employed $45.00 an hour is not enough in todays economy. So being a realist, do your research, buy a quality product and go out and fly and enjoy yourself.

If you get 100 flights on a 50 dollar motor you are paying .50 cents a flight. Most likely you'll get a lot more than that out of your motor and your battery packs if you take care of them. Everytime you go out and fly em you'll be making the cost go down. :) So live well, fly often and enjoy.

I suppose it is all in how much you want to do the hobby. Fishing is expensive what with the license and the lures and the worms at $2.50 for 12. Worms mind you. Boating is expensive. All those luxury taxes you have to pay annually. Camping, whew, have you priced tent camping sites lately. Feel blessed if your fly-in sponsors a weekend fly in and charges $5.00 a night to camp. You won't find that price anywere but at a flying field. And a trip around the moon .............priceless. Forgot what the ticket price was going to be. I guess it is all you are willing to pay to play.

I am sure we will all be looking forward to your less expensive brushless motor to hit the market. We would all like to play cheaper if it's as high a quality motor with manufacture warranty. But it's like computers. Don't wait too long or they may be outdated:)

10-11-2005, 06:39 PM
But it's like computers. Don't wait too long or they may be outdated:)
Oh well, guess my planes will be 3 years behind then.:p

Jessum Dumguy
10-11-2005, 11:44 PM
Okay I was searching for something else when I found this thread,
Gonna ask a question and Hope someone here has the answer. :)

First I'll warn that the motor is by Walkera... Ya ya ya I know.
Now it's not an Itty Bitty 180 or 380 like they have in their helo's,
This is a 540L, Has a 5mm x 22 mm shaft, Same mounting hole
pattern as a 600 Brushed motor, (25mm Seperation).
Motor body dimentions: 36mm Dia x 58,5mm L
Voltage range 6-18,
Hollow current at 10v of <2,
Impedance of 35 milliohms
and a KV or 1900 rpm/volt.
Anyone see whats missing?
Ya, the question is, Anyone know what the sustained and
Burst Amps are of this thing? The paperwork that came with
the motor don't tell me Doodoo. I can find absolutely NUTTIN on
Walkera's site and their forum seems to be some form of sadistic joke.

As someone above stated, "You get what you pay for".
I'd have gladely paid another 5 bucks if They'd have
included all the information needed.:confused:
Can someone elighten me?

Jessum Dumguy

10-12-2005, 11:41 AM
Glow fuel is pretty much the same. There are not many players in that market. I use 15% nitro with 18 to 20% oil content. I get it for $15 a gallon. Buy a case of it and it is even cheaper.
Lipoly batteries on the other hand, there are multitudes of them. Just about all are made in china. $1 an hour labor most likely. So, if it is that cheap to make, then why are they so expensive here? Maybe there's "middlemen" involved or brokers. Just like the jewelry industry.


10-12-2005, 06:24 PM
Or maybe the LiPo's are just such a great product the production has not caught up to the supply. Laptops, blackberrys, portable CD player, Ipod's, cell phones, digital cameras, those are BIG hungery markets looking for the latest technology.