Feedback on plan for first e-bike - Giant Roam with BBS__?

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sryland
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Feedback on plan for first e-bike - Giant Roam with BBS__?

Post by sryland » Jan 23, 2018 4:15 pm

Hi all, this feels like a great community and I'm glad I stumbled across it.

Last year I quit my job and went back to school, which extended my bicycle commute from 4 miles to 13 miles. At the time we decided to buy a cheap car, but since then I've missed being outside and am getting less healthy. So I've started biking again. The only problem is, it takes 75 minutes, and there aren't any showers anywhere near the building where I basically live on campus.

So I've been researching e-bike options - this forum has been super helpful. I have a Giant Roam hybrid bicycle, which I love, and which seems suitable for conversion. I was thinking a mid-drive would be good, to help with stability in snowy and icy conditions, and to make flat repairs easier. I've heard that rear hub drives can be less stable and make a flat change really painful.

I don't want to just coast all what way, happy to put in some pedal power, but would just like some assistance on the few hills that I have to climb so I don't break out in a sweat so easy, and a little more speed to save a bit of time so my wife and kids don't forget who I am. Happy with 25-30 mph on level ground. At the same time, I'm a big guy (250 right now, but my ideal weight is 220). I want to get a motor that won't burn out under my weight.

At the moment, I'm leaning towards the BBS02, but wondered if the extra $150 or so for the BBSHD is worth it for my situation. A 48 or 52v 11.5ah battery should be adequate I think.

My main questions are:
- Is there a cheaper option that would be adequate to my needs and reliable?
- Is it worth the jump to the BBSHD? I've heard the increased power can strain the chain system, etc with the BBSHD, not sure if that's true.
- This kit https://lunacycle.com/bafang-bbs02-mid-drive-kit/ from lunacycle, plus a battery, should be all I need, right?

I'd appreciate any advice or guidance, thanks so much.

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Re: Feedback on plan for first e-bike - Giant Roam with BBS__?

Post by MadRhino » Jan 23, 2018 5:39 pm

I would go for the BBSHD kit from em3ev.com, and add some of the upgrades. A big guy won’t regret the extra power.

Yet, I find best commuters are hub builds, in winter conditions especially. Fast, simple and reliable, are important factors to me.
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Re: Feedback on plan for first e-bike - Giant Roam with BBS__?

Post by Drunkskunk » Jan 23, 2018 7:27 pm

If the BBSHD is in your budget, it would be a great option. Sure, putting more torque on your chain and gears will wear it out faster, but those are parts that wear out eventually anyway. "faster" might be mean they are toast by summer, or toast in 20 years. sooner than normal, but sooner might still be a decades away.

A cheaper option would be a hub motor. nothing wrong with them, and any instability they would have would likely come from a bad setup, such as putting a heavy battery on a rear rack combined with a rear motor.

As for tire changes being harder on hub motor? true. if mechanical can-openers are difficult...
generally the extra steps involve (1) unplug the motor. (2) remove the bolt from the torque arm (3) proceed as normal.
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Re: Feedback on plan for first e-bike - Giant Roam with BBS__?

Post by wturber » Jan 23, 2018 8:20 pm

I built my commuter for a similar distance of around 32 miles round trip. I went the direct drive hub route for simplicity and reliability. Yes, unplugging the motor and unhooking the torque arms does make for more trouble if you get a flat. But my judgement was that the solution is to flat-proof your rear tire as much as possible. But I'm not going to try to talk you out of a mid drive. It should offer better performance at the cost of more maintenance and a bit more trouble to build. Some folks love their mid drives.

That battery will require you to charge at work and at home. Your call if that's what you want to do. But a larger battery allows you to take longer trips and to have extra capacity if you want to run errands at lunch. Also, fewer charge cycles would mean a longer battery life - assuming you have enough capacity to comfortably cover both commutes and still have some battery reserve.
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53T/42T Sakae Road cranks - 30mph+ on flats
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Re: Feedback on plan for first e-bike - Giant Roam with BBS__?

Post by sryland » Jan 23, 2018 11:11 pm

MadRhino wrote:
Jan 23, 2018 5:39 pm
I would go for the BBSHD kit from em3ev.com, and add some of the upgrades. A big guy won’t regret the extra power.

Yet, I find best commuters are hub builds, in winter conditions especially. Fast, simple and reliable, are important factors to me.
That's good to know - one of the comments I had read about them said they had all kinds of trouble with the extra weight in the back, but if you're from Montreal you should know how they work in winter conditions!

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Re: Feedback on plan for first e-bike - Giant Roam with BBS__?

Post by sryland » Jan 23, 2018 11:12 pm

Drunkskunk wrote:
Jan 23, 2018 7:27 pm
If the BBSHD is in your budget, it would be a great option. Sure, putting more torque on your chain and gears will wear it out faster, but those are parts that wear out eventually anyway. "faster" might be mean they are toast by summer, or toast in 20 years. sooner than normal, but sooner might still be a decades away.

A cheaper option would be a hub motor. nothing wrong with them, and any instability they would have would likely come from a bad setup, such as putting a heavy battery on a rear rack combined with a rear motor.

As for tire changes being harder on hub motor? true. if mechanical can-openers are difficult...
generally the extra steps involve (1) unplug the motor. (2) remove the bolt from the torque arm (3) proceed as normal.
Thanks for the clarification. I must be reading reviews from people who have trouble with can-openers. That seems pretty simple.

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Re: Feedback on plan for first e-bike - Giant Roam with BBS__?

Post by sryland » Jan 23, 2018 11:19 pm

wturber wrote:
Jan 23, 2018 8:20 pm
I built my commuter for a similar distance of around 32 miles round trip. I went the direct drive hub route for simplicity and reliability. Yes, unplugging the motor and unhooking the torque arms does make for more trouble if you get a flat. But my judgement was that the solution is to flat-proof your rear tire as much as possible. But I'm not going to try to talk you out of a mid drive. It should offer better performance at the cost of more maintenance and a bit more trouble to build. Some folks love their mid drives.

That battery will require you to charge at work and at home. Your call if that's what you want to do. But a larger battery allows you to take longer trips and to have extra capacity if you want to run errands at lunch. Also, fewer charge cycles would mean a longer battery life - assuming you have enough capacity to comfortably cover both commutes and still have some battery reserve.
I'm getting a lot of recommendations for the direct drive hub, I'll have to look into it more. Maybe it's a good idea to start with a cheaper option. Can I ask, what effect did it have on your commute time, and was it pretty efficient going up hills?

I might be doing my calcs wrong on the battery, I thought it would get me further than that. It also might be something to do with the extra efficiency on the mid-drive. I'll look in to that a little more as well. Thanks for the feedback.

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Re: Feedback on plan for first e-bike - Giant Roam with BBS__?

Post by sryland » Jan 24, 2018 1:35 am

So I've done a lot more research and I concur with the opinions here - I would do fine with a simple rear hub drive. It would save me a lot of money and potential complications.

It seems like the 48v 1000w ebay options are popular. My only concern is most of the ebay options are for 26" wheels, and my bike has 700c wheels. I've read the motor can be relaced on to my current wheel but I'm not sure how confident I am about doing that and truing the wheel. Is that tricky, or would I be better off finding a 700c kit somewhere? Are there any rear hubs you would recommend?

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Re: Feedback on plan for first e-bike - Giant Roam with BBS__?

Post by amberwolf » Jan 24, 2018 2:22 am

I don't personally trust any of the prebuilt hubmotor wheels (too-thick spokes, cheap rims, poor wheelbuilding, etc) so while there probably are durable prebuilt ones, I haven't had one yet that I didn't have to either redo or keep tweaking it every few rides (or more often).

I'd recommend getting just a motor and lacing it up into a new rim (getting 14-15g butted spokes cut for that combination; there are spoke calculators around for that, like on http://ebikes.ca ). I'd keep your original wheel intact as a spare, just in case.

You can also just buy the regular kit and move the motor to your own wheel build.

Lacing and tensioning and truing is easy, though it takes some practice and is timeconsuming at first. I'd do that on "junk" wheels you don't need first, unlacing and relacing them and truing them till you have the process down. If you don't mind the time it's a useful skill when stuff goes wrong roadside. Lots of threads (and webpages) about building/truing wheels; I started at Sheldon Brown's site and worked my way from there, but ther'es good info already here on ES nowadays, some of it in the Sticky Index threads.

Bike shops in your area may also build the wheel for you, but I'd ask about their experience with hubmotors first--some of them don't seem to be competent wheelbuilders (there's a recent thread about one such experience, where after several tries they eventually *seem* to have got it right but destroyed the guy's tube (or worse) while they were at it).

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Re: Feedback on plan for first e-bike - Giant Roam with BBS__?

Post by amberwolf » Jan 24, 2018 2:29 am

Regarding the battery--keep in mind that over time the battery will degrade and drop in range and power output capability. How quickly this happens depends on the battery quality (so the cheaper you go for the same stuff, the faster it will probably degrade).

So if you get a battery that has "just enough" range and power for your trip, then as it degrades it won't have enough anymore.

Also, if you run into headwinds, or are forced into detours (roadwork, traffic, etc), you'll need more range for those situations.

That said, it might not matter, if you get more fit riding as the battery ages.


Side note: sometimes a more expensive battery isnt' any better than a cheap one, but comes from a seller that supports you when it breaks (when the cheaper one has a whiteline warranty).

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Re: Feedback on plan for first e-bike - Giant Roam with BBS__?

Post by MadRhino » Jan 24, 2018 1:26 pm

Easy to find on ebay
https://m.ebay.com/itm/RisunMotor-Ebike ... lzdU6zIt0Q

Easy to find on Aliexpress
https://m.fr.aliexpress.com/item/328344 ... 2834419402

Easy to buy direct at manufacturers, or sellers here on ES. Many choices available.
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Re: Feedback on plan for first e-bike - Giant Roam with BBS__?

Post by wturber » Jan 24, 2018 2:58 pm

sryland wrote:
Jan 23, 2018 11:19 pm

I'm getting a lot of recommendations for the direct drive hub, I'll have to look into it more. Maybe it's a good idea to start with a cheaper option. Can I ask, what effect did it have on your commute time, and was it pretty efficient going up hills?

I might be doing my calcs wrong on the battery, I thought it would get me further than that. It also might be something to do with the extra efficiency on the mid-drive. I'll look in to that a little more as well. Thanks for the feedback.
I don't think that mid-drives are generally more efficient except in special circumstances like steep climbs at low speeds where the ability to gear down keeps the motor from being bogged down.

I never even bothered to try the 16 mile commute on my regular bike. Just climbing a couple steep hills on the way out of town was enough of a deterrent. That isn't a fun way to start the morning - especially in the summer. And on the way back, I have miles of going up a mild grade. Who wants to do that after a long day at work? Not me. I like exercising and pretty much always pedal to assist the bike. But if I'm tired, I want the option to take it easy. My ebike serves two functions. 1) Flattens hills. 2) Allows for higher average speeds.

My typical commute time is about 50-55 minutes depending on which direction, how I hit certain lights, and whether it is nighttime or not. My fastest time is about 45 minutes. My car commute is 25 minutes (and two miles shorter).

If you ride like me, you should estimate about 25 watts/mile for energy usage. But since you are heavier, I'd guess you'll consume more - especially going up hills. Take a look at this graph and link if you want a better ballpark for estimating range.

https://endless-sphere.com/forums/viewt ... 3#p1351655
Image

With about 1150 watts my direct drive hub can cruise up 10% grades pretty much unassisted. Steeper hills require pedal assistance. If you go with a direct drive hub, you'll probably want to make sure you can feed it 1500 watts given that you'll be pulling more weight up hills than I am. But a lot of this depends on the particular direct drive and the windings it has.

Here are two GPS tracks of my commute. One is my ride to work and the other is the ride home. Poke around on the page and you can find elevation info and see the speeds compared to elevation changes. I had my heart rate monitor on with these (though it ran out of battery on the way home.) so you can get an idea of how hard I'm working. My normal resting heart rate is in the low 50s, so you can see that I'm putting effort into pedaling, but I'm not knocking myself out. I'd guess my effort to be about 16-17 mile cruising speed on flat ground. Though maybe that's being generous. Hard to say.

http://www.sportstracklive.com/track/de ... rk/2386717
http://www.sportstracklive.com/track/de ... me/2386718
"Commuter - DC Booster"
Iron Horse 3.0 hardtail - 48V / 1000W / 470rpm generic Chinese DD Hub motor (ebay)
7 x 36v 4.3ah 10s 2P battery packs - Wangdd22 1500W 30A DC Boost Converter delivers 54v and about 1175 watts peak
53T/42T Sakae Road cranks - 30mph+ on flats
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Re: Feedback on plan for first e-bike - Giant Roam with BBS__?

Post by MadRhino » Jan 24, 2018 4:45 pm

1000 watt motors can be fed many times more, with controller mod or upgrade, and a battery that can supply the Amps needed.

I have made some riding 100 kmh, and we are many on ES to have fed 10 kw bursts to motors that were rated 1000 watts.
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Re: Feedback on plan for first e-bike - Giant Roam with BBS__?

Post by sryland » Jan 24, 2018 7:53 pm

amberwolf wrote:
Jan 24, 2018 2:29 am
Regarding the battery--keep in mind that over time the battery will degrade and drop in range and power output capability. How quickly this happens depends on the battery quality (so the cheaper you go for the same stuff, the faster it will probably degrade).

So if you get a battery that has "just enough" range and power for your trip, then as it degrades it won't have enough anymore.

Also, if you run into headwinds, or are forced into detours (roadwork, traffic, etc), you'll need more range for those situations.

That said, it might not matter, if you get more fit riding as the battery ages.


Side note: sometimes a more expensive battery isnt' any better than a cheap one, but comes from a seller that supports you when it breaks (when the cheaper one has a whiteline warranty).
I don't mind spending for a decent quality battery that will be reliable and give me all I need. Some of the recommendations on here are to buy cheap lipos from hobby king, string them together, and then charge them in the bathtub in case they explode...? I'm happy to pay for a battery (and charger) that I don't have to worry about. I've seen some prepackaged ones on em3ev and lunacycle - would they fit the bill?

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Re: Feedback on plan for first e-bike - Giant Roam with BBS__?

Post by sryland » Jan 24, 2018 8:06 pm

wturber wrote:
Jan 24, 2018 2:58 pm
sryland wrote:
Jan 23, 2018 11:19 pm

I'm getting a lot of recommendations for the direct drive hub, I'll have to look into it more. Maybe it's a good idea to start with a cheaper option. Can I ask, what effect did it have on your commute time, and was it pretty efficient going up hills?

I might be doing my calcs wrong on the battery, I thought it would get me further than that. It also might be something to do with the extra efficiency on the mid-drive. I'll look in to that a little more as well. Thanks for the feedback.
I don't think that mid-drives are generally more efficient except in special circumstances like steep climbs at low speeds where the ability to gear down keeps the motor from being bogged down.

I never even bothered to try the 16 mile commute on my regular bike. Just climbing a couple steep hills on the way out of town was enough of a deterrent. That isn't a fun way to start the morning - especially in the summer. And on the way back, I have miles of going up a mild grade. Who wants to do that after a long day at work? Not me. I like exercising and pretty much always pedal to assist the bike. But if I'm tired, I want the option to take it easy. My ebike serves two functions. 1) Flattens hills. 2) Allows for higher average speeds.

My typical commute time is about 50-55 minutes depending on which direction, how I hit certain lights, and whether it is nighttime or not. My fastest time is about 45 minutes. My car commute is 25 minutes (and two miles shorter).

If you ride like me, you should estimate about 25 watts/mile for energy usage. But since you are heavier, I'd guess you'll consume more - especially going up hills. Take a look at this graph and link if you want a better ballpark for estimating range.

https://endless-sphere.com/forums/viewt ... 3#p1351655
Image

With about 1150 watts my direct drive hub can cruise up 10% grades pretty much unassisted. Steeper hills require pedal assistance. If you go with a direct drive hub, you'll probably want to make sure you can feed it 1500 watts given that you'll be pulling more weight up hills than I am. But a lot of this depends on the particular direct drive and the windings it has.

Here are two GPS tracks of my commute. One is my ride to work and the other is the ride home. Poke around on the page and you can find elevation info and see the speeds compared to elevation changes. I had my heart rate monitor on with these (though it ran out of battery on the way home.) so you can get an idea of how hard I'm working. My normal resting heart rate is in the low 50s, so you can see that I'm putting effort into pedaling, but I'm not knocking myself out. I'd guess my effort to be about 16-17 mile cruising speed on flat ground. Though maybe that's being generous. Hard to say.

http://www.sportstracklive.com/track/de ... rk/2386717
http://www.sportstracklive.com/track/de ... me/2386718
This is so similar to my situation, it's almost eerie - just that I have a few extra pounds :) . I have mountains and flats really similar to your description - both ways I start with a steady downhill, then a long uphill for the end of the ride, with a couple of sharper ascents thrown in. I want to pedal, just want to take the edge off those hills so I don't arrive in poor shape. After 2.5 hours of riding, I am feeling it the next day!

I took notice of your comment earlier and particularly your setup - the hub drive looks good and seems like it is holding up for you, just that it comes on a 26" wheel - I really want to keep my bike with the 700c wheel so I'd have to relace the motor in, but it's such a good price at $150 it might be worth it. How is your battery setup for you - does it take much upkeep?

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Re: Feedback on plan for first e-bike - Giant Roam with BBS__?

Post by wturber » Jan 24, 2018 9:06 pm

sryland wrote:
Jan 24, 2018 8:06 pm

I took notice of your comment earlier and particularly your setup - the hub drive looks good and seems like it is holding up for you, just that it comes on a 26" wheel - I really want to keep my bike with the 700c wheel so I'd have to relace the motor in, but it's such a good price at $150 it might be worth it. How is your battery setup for you - does it take much upkeep?
The kit I purchased can be found below. It's a bit more than $150, but I've found the LCD gives a lot of flexibility in setting up your controller. It also provides easy upgrade options to many other KT controllers.

A lot is said on these forums about these wheels being built poorly in that they used overly thick spokes. Look it up, the logic makes sense. I suspect I'm getting away with this improperly built wheel (zero problems so far) because I'm not heavy and don't hit lots of potholes. You could buy this kit or something similar and simply have the rim replaced and re-spoked properly with a 700c wheel. It all depends on the various kit prices and how it all adds up.

The freewheel on my kit, and I suspect many others, wasn't so hot. I ended up getting replacement DNP freewheel from Grin for around 40 shipped because I wanted an 11 tooth high gear. It's also better quality and shifts cleaner with index shifters. That will be an important addition if you want to pedal at 25 mph. The best thing about a kit like mine (other than price) for a first timer is that all the parts work with each other. So you can get up an running easily. Then when you learn more you might tweak and fiddle a bit.

https://www.ebay.com/itm/48V1000W-26-Fr ... XbPDRth-dg

My batteries are holding up great after about 1500 miles. I don't fully charge them so that they will last longer. Nor do I run them down to empty. I'm running 7 of those LG "hoverboard" packs for 36v and a total of 28 amps hrs for about 1000 watt hours of power. The biggest issue is that it takes 2+ hours to recharge when I get home. No big deal if I get home at a reasonable hour, but not so good if I get home late. So far all the packs have stayed in excellent balance. But frankly, my battery setup is a bit fiddly and I've never built a proper enclosure for it. They are just strapped in a padded camera bag to my rack. Their one main virtue is that I was able to buy about 1500 watt hrs of battery for a bit more than $200. But I don't think you can get those packs any more.
"Commuter - DC Booster"
Iron Horse 3.0 hardtail - 48V / 1000W / 470rpm generic Chinese DD Hub motor (ebay)
7 x 36v 4.3ah 10s 2P battery packs - Wangdd22 1500W 30A DC Boost Converter delivers 54v and about 1175 watts peak
53T/42T Sakae Road cranks - 30mph+ on flats
https://endless-sphere.com/forums/viewt ... =2&t=90369

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Re: Feedback on plan for first e-bike - Giant Roam with BBS__?

Post by e-beach » Jan 24, 2018 9:30 pm

Contact ebikes.ca http://www.ebikes.ca/about-us/contact-grin.html they know all about cold weather riding and they are super knowledgeable and super nice people.

I have never run a BB motor so I will not comment on that. I have had great dependability from my front hub motor from yescomusa.com they call it a "bicycle engine". I have over 12000 miles on my motor.

However, in the cold wet streets you will want something pushing from the rear. Hub motors are very dependable and not than much trouble when changing an inner tube. Simply allow enough cable to be able to remove the wheel without disconnecting the motor.

For a flat: Step 1- remove the torque arm. Step 2- proceed as usual.

What I would do is get a good mountain bike with a big triangle space, put the hub motor on the back, put the battery in the triangle for proper balance and ride to where-ever. 48v would work for you.

I am about 200lbs, I run at 800w at 36v and I use about 27wh per mile. So I go something like this 15ah *36v = 540wh / 27wh per mile = 20 miles.

I actually get a little less miles then that because my Headway battery pack is over 11000 miles now, but if you went with a 48v 15ah pack, you could get 25 miles out of it without pedaling.

If you want to pedal more, put a PAS on your bike so you will be forced to pedal to get the bike to move.

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Current build: Liahona w/ cheap front suspension and suspension seat post. Yescomusa 36v 800w generic front hub motor. 15ah Headway triangle mounted pack. Tronsung 30 amp,

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Re: Feedback on plan for first e-bike - Giant Roam with BBS__?

Post by sryland » Jan 25, 2018 12:18 am

e-beach wrote:
Jan 24, 2018 9:30 pm
Contact ebikes.ca http://www.ebikes.ca/about-us/contact-grin.html they know all about cold weather riding and they are super knowledgeable and super nice people.

I have never run a BB motor so I will not comment on that. I have had great dependability from my front hub motor from yescomusa.com they call it a "bicycle engine". I have over 12000 miles on my motor.

However, in the cold wet streets you will want something pushing from the rear. Hub motors are very dependable and not than much trouble when changing an inner tube. Simply allow enough cable to be able to remove the wheel without disconnecting the motor.

For a flat: Step 1- remove the torque arm. Step 2- proceed as usual.

What I would do is get a good mountain bike with a big triangle space, put the hub motor on the back, put the battery in the triangle for proper balance and ride to where-ever. 48v would work for you.

I am about 200lbs, I run at 800w at 36v and I use about 27wh per mile. So I go something like this 15ah *36v = 540wh / 27wh per mile = 20 miles.

I actually get a little less miles then that because my Headway battery pack is over 11000 miles now, but if you went with a 48v 15ah pack, you could get 25 miles out of it without pedaling.

If you want to pedal more, put a PAS on your bike so you will be forced to pedal to get the bike to move.

:D
This all sounds like good advice. I think a rear hub motor would work well. BTW - you really have a Liahona? Don't see too many of those around anymore.

I'm gravitating towards this MAC kit from em3ev: https://em3ev.com/shop/upgrade-mac-kit- ... 1500w-max/

I figured the geared motor, while having more working parts and possibility of failure, also lets me ride the bike motorless without drag when I want to, and have the added bonus of less weight and better hill climbing. I could also get my battery from em3ev at the same time - I have a large hybrid bike so plenty of space in the triangle. Anyone know anything more about these MAC hubs - are they pretty reliable?

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Re: Feedback on plan for first e-bike - Giant Roam with BBS__?

Post by sryland » Jan 25, 2018 12:24 am

wturber wrote:
Jan 24, 2018 9:06 pm

A lot is said on these forums about these wheels being built poorly in that they used overly thick spokes. Look it up, the logic makes sense. I suspect I'm getting away with this improperly built wheel (zero problems so far) because I'm not heavy and don't hit lots of potholes. You could buy this kit or something similar and simply have the rim replaced and re-spoked properly with a 700c wheel. It all depends on the various kit prices and how it all adds up.

The freewheel on my kit, and I suspect many others, wasn't so hot. I ended up getting replacement DNP freewheel from Grin for around 40 shipped because I wanted an 11 tooth high gear. It's also better quality and shifts cleaner with index shifters. That will be an important addition if you want to pedal at 25 mph. The best thing about a kit like mine (other than price) for a first timer is that all the parts work with each other. So you can get up an running easily. Then when you learn more you might tweak and fiddle a bit.
I like the idea of getting a new wheel along with the motor as a kit, designed to work all together. I'll look around for something that looks sturdy. It also means that I can always keep my old wheel in case I want to put the bike back to normal again. I can see myself upgrading the freewheel though - would like to keep pedaling as much as possible.

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Re: Feedback on plan for first e-bike - Giant Roam with BBS__?

Post by wturber » Jan 25, 2018 12:51 am

sryland wrote:
Jan 25, 2018 12:24 am

I like the idea of getting a new wheel along with the motor as a kit, designed to work all together. I'll look around for something that looks sturdy. It also means that I can always keep my old wheel in case I want to put the bike back to normal again. I can see myself upgrading the freewheel though - would like to keep pedaling as much as possible.
What makes for a good strong wheel is counter-intuitive. My wheel looks very sturdy. But the accepted wisdom seems to be that it really isn't. When spokes are too heavy of a gauge, it is likely that they won't hold tension properly. The more the wheel is stressed, the more important this is. You can, of course, go ahead and risk it. Worst case scenario is that you take it to a bike shop and have the wheel built "properly" once that sturdy looking wheel starts to either break spokes or have spokes loosen. And if you were my weight, I'd be less inclined to warn you off. But as a heavier guy, you are more likely to have problems based on the many testimonials I've read here.
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Re: Feedback on plan for first e-bike - Giant Roam with BBS__?

Post by amberwolf » Jan 25, 2018 1:10 am

wturber wrote:
Jan 24, 2018 9:06 pm

A lot is said on these forums about these wheels being built poorly in that they used overly thick spokes. Look it up, the logic makes sense. I suspect I'm getting away with this improperly built wheel (zero problems so far) because I'm not heavy and don't hit lots of potholes.
Lots of people have no trouble with the wheels...or at least, they may not know they have trouble because it doesnt' cause them grief, or it's simply no worse than the wheel they took off the bike to put hte motor wheel on. :)

It's just not a universal success rate. :(

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Re: Feedback on plan for first e-bike - Giant Roam with BBS__?

Post by e-beach » Jan 25, 2018 10:57 am

sryland wrote:
Jan 25, 2018 12:18 am
...... BTW - you really have a Liahona? Don't see too many of those around anymore.
Well, had a Lianona. The down tube cracked recently and it is enough to retire the frame. 12000+ miles of front hub motor duty, it held out well.
I'm gravitating towards this MAC kit from em3ev: https://em3ev.com/shop/upgrade-mac-kit- ... 1500w-max/
em3 has a good reputation.

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Current build: Liahona w/ cheap front suspension and suspension seat post. Yescomusa 36v 800w generic front hub motor. 15ah Headway triangle mounted pack. Tronsung 30 amp,

Previous Build:1992 Trek Antelope 800 - Bone Crusher (no suspension) - Yescomusa 800 watt 36 volt front wheel kit. Don't do it! Get suspension!!!

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Re: Feedback on plan for first e-bike - Giant Roam with BBS__?

Post by wturber » Jan 25, 2018 11:55 am

amberwolf wrote:
Jan 25, 2018 1:10 am

Lots of people have no trouble with the wheels...or at least, they may not know they have trouble because it doesnt' cause them grief, or it's simply no worse than the wheel they took off the bike to put hte motor wheel on. :)

It's just not a universal success rate. :(
Mine is true. No loose spokes. Spoke "ping" sounds very consistent. But who knows, in another 1500 miles it might just fall apart.
"Commuter - DC Booster"
Iron Horse 3.0 hardtail - 48V / 1000W / 470rpm generic Chinese DD Hub motor (ebay)
7 x 36v 4.3ah 10s 2P battery packs - Wangdd22 1500W 30A DC Boost Converter delivers 54v and about 1175 watts peak
53T/42T Sakae Road cranks - 30mph+ on flats
https://endless-sphere.com/forums/viewt ... =2&t=90369

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Re: Feedback on plan for first e-bike - Giant Roam with BBS__?

Post by e-beach » Jan 26, 2018 11:31 am

I have had to tighten my thick spokes twice in over 12000 miles on that motor. I rode it for about 1000 miles and some spokes got loose. I tighten them and performed a very modest truing because that's all it needed.

The second time was when I replaced the rim after I was hit by a car.

On the other hand, I have had to true and repair my non-drive wheel, the one with normal spokes (the rear one) at least 10 times in the same time-span.

If people are having trouble with their spokes loosening then something else beside big spokes is going on.

I would recommend for those who get a wheel with large spokes is to check the after the first mile and after the first 100 miles. Then periodically as a normal maintenance.

Bike spokes can get loose or break regardless of size.

:D
Favorite Quote: "This is L.A., sugar. There is no 'over the top." --- Chris Erskine

Current build: Liahona w/ cheap front suspension and suspension seat post. Yescomusa 36v 800w generic front hub motor. 15ah Headway triangle mounted pack. Tronsung 30 amp,

Previous Build:1992 Trek Antelope 800 - Bone Crusher (no suspension) - Yescomusa 800 watt 36 volt front wheel kit. Don't do it! Get suspension!!!

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Re: Feedback on plan for first e-bike - Giant Roam with BBS__?

Post by MadRhino » Jan 26, 2018 11:54 am

On a front wheel motor, a poor wheel build is not much of a problem. Mainly because front hub motor ebikes are slow, and the front wheel doesn’t suffer the hard impacts/weight that the rear wheel does.

A rear wheel does require much better building, and much more frequent maintenance. Add to this, that rear motor ebikes are often built faster and more powerful, then a good wheel becomes a must.
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