My econo-e-bike

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E-HP   1.21 GW

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Re: My econo-e-bike

Post by E-HP » Sep 23 2020 12:07am

I finally pulled the trigger on my battery upgrade. Same UPP triangle hard case, but 14S8P of Samsung 35E cells. This gets me a decent bump up, from 30A to 40A continuous and peak current bumps up to 120A. Capacity goes up too, from 20Ah to 28Ah. :thumb: This was the best option for me to stuff 40A continuous into my frame triangle, and still have the capacity/range I like having.

I've been using my 4 x 4S lipo packs, carried in the small top tube bag, wired in series with my main pack up until now, but my 6S 8Ah Turnigy Graphene lipos showed up today, so I guess I'm switching to 20S. The Graphene lipos are pretty hefty, and one 8Ah 6S pack is bigger and heavier than the two 5Ah 4S lipos. They just fit in each side of the bag, like it was made for them.

I also got a 5A charger, and tested it today after soldering on a new connector. I hooked up my pack, that started at 52.3V, then proceeded to unbox the new lipos (can't believe the fancy packaging on these things). I needed to solder up another XT90 to XP60 jumper so I could charge both packs. They arrived at 3.7V, so I maxed my charger at 14A to parallel charge them (they are rated for 5C charging, but 14A into two packs is less than 1C). I stopped when they reached 4V so I could get a test ride in before dark. My main pack just hit 57V by then, which was really nice to see. I should have upgraded my charger a long time ago!

Anyway, 20S at 30A is pretty fun, so I know I'll really be grinning once the new pack arrives and I have 40A :lol: I can predict a 24S test in the future. :roll:

The two 8Ah packs should be good for short to medium rides, so if I'm going trail riding, I can use the main pack until I get to the trail head, and then add the lipos for more power and fun. :wink:

EDIT: I think I had an epiphany while riding around today. I turned off pedal assist a couple of weeks ago, and started using cruise control with pedaling instead, which works well and seems as efficient. For the last week, I've just been using throttle, with slide regen set on the controller, and the CA throttle set to power. Since I like pedaling, this basically was forcing me to develop techniques to mimic pedal assist or cruise control. But in doings to, I noticed that I have a lot more control over the efficiency and consumption. I still like having the other options for a really long rides or when I'm really lazy, but for normal riding around, it seems like I can do whatever I need with just good throttle control. Of course a better throttle may be something I need to consider :P

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Re: My econo-e-bike

Post by rowbiker » Sep 23 2020 9:08am

E-HP wrote:
Sep 23 2020 12:07am
EDIT: I think I had an epiphany while riding around today. I turned off pedal assist a couple of weeks ago, and started using cruise control with pedaling instead, which works well and seems as efficient. For the last week, I've just been using throttle, with slide regen set on the controller, and the CA throttle set to power. Since I like pedaling, this basically was forcing me to develop techniques to mimic pedal assist or cruise control. But in doings to, I noticed that I have a lot more control over the efficiency and consumption. I still like having the other options for a really long rides or when I'm really lazy, but for normal riding around, it seems like I can do whatever I need with just good throttle control. Of course a better throttle may be something I need to consider :P
I've had that same epiphany, while using a Grin all-axle/Phaserunner/CA combination. I have a serious aversion to using brakes, and with the aforementioned motor/controller combination I've only had to use the mechanical brakes for severe emergency stops (which any biker will occasionally encounter). I think you put your finger on the real issue here: "a better throttle". I'm working on coming up with a single control device which handles both the acceleration/deceleration duties seamlessly. My current target is a grip arrangement using strain gages, so there would be no moving parts. The concept works on the test bench so far...

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Re: My econo-e-bike

Post by LeftieBiker » Sep 23 2020 1:40pm

My Vectrix VX-1 has a throttle that twists both ways, giving variable, progressive regen when turned backwards while riding, and a very welcome Reverse "gear" when the bike is stopped and it is turned backwards. No need to move your hand to another control for regen. That should be the Gold Standard. As for using the throttle to provide maximum efficiency: back in my EZIP Trailz days, before I got my first Ping Pack, I had to do that if I wanted to ride farther than 10 miles. I got 18+ miles from the puny 5 amp hours or so of available energy, on my rather hilly route, that way.

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Re: My econo-e-bike

Post by rowbiker » Sep 23 2020 7:41pm

LeftieBiker wrote:
Sep 23 2020 1:40pm
My Vectrix VX-1 has a throttle that twists both ways, giving variable, progressive regen when turned backwards while riding, and a very welcome Reverse "gear" when the bike is stopped and it is turned backwards. No need to move your hand to another control for regen. That should be the Gold Standard.
Agreed. I've heard about the Vectrix throttle before, and if it were available anywhere at a somewhat reasonable price, I'd certainly pick one up to try it out.

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Re: My econo-e-bike

Post by LeftieBiker » Sep 23 2020 11:45pm

rowbiker wrote:
Sep 23 2020 7:41pm
LeftieBiker wrote:
Sep 23 2020 1:40pm
My Vectrix VX-1 has a throttle that twists both ways, giving variable, progressive regen when turned backwards while riding, and a very welcome Reverse "gear" when the bike is stopped and it is turned backwards. No need to move your hand to another control for regen. That should be the Gold Standard.
Agreed. I've heard about the Vectrix throttle before, and if it were available anywhere at a somewhat reasonable price, I'd certainly pick one up to try it out.
I have a bunch of spare parts that came with the bike - new spare parts. I don't remember seeing any throttles, but I can check.

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Re: My econo-e-bike

Post by E-HP » Sep 24 2020 1:23pm

I was super bummed out when I went to charge my bike this morning, and found I had a flat. Arghh! Upon careful inspection, I couldn't find any evidence of a puncture. I haven't had a flat since mounting these Schwalbe Crazy Bobs, and I recall mounting them was a major chore. The only good thing is that it forces me to do all the little things that I've been holding off on, like replacing the spacer washer on the freewheel side, which currently is using a C washer, and adjusting the dishing on my wheel to eliminate the slight lean I have while riding. I'll also be inspecting my dropout and torque arms, and specifically looking to see if the dropouts and how the axle seats in them, could be causing some alignment issues.

Anyway, even though the flat sucks, I may be able to fix some issues and have more confidence that the dropouts and torque arms have been doing their job. Still sucks, since the weather is really nice today :oops:

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Re: My econo-e-bike

Post by Balmorhea » Sep 24 2020 1:53pm

You can do a flat repair Dutch style, without taking the wheel out of the frame.

Compared to removing the rear wheel of a traditional Dutch bike with full chain case, internal gear hub, and drum brake, pulling a hub motor wheel is usually easier. So they usually don't.

[youtube]Hfq_e6HBZq0[/youtube]
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Re: My econo-e-bike

Post by ZeroEm » Sep 24 2020 2:31pm

Check the tire for wire or other pointy objects still in there but hard to see.
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Re: My econo-e-bike

Post by E-HP » Sep 24 2020 9:56pm

Yup. Going to do a full inspection and tune up. I don't remember the last time I lubed the chain or did any sort of maintenance, bike-wise. The main thing I want to do, besides fix the flat, is to get the bike frame/wheels aligned to get rid of the tilt. Once I have it flipped over, I can get that done. I want to make sure the wheel isn't actually tilted, like if the axle on one side sits deeper in the dropout than on the other side, or something like that.

Hopefully I can just flip the bike over with no issues, since I tried to make sure everything is mounted low on the bars, including the Cycle Analyst. I have some lumber lying around to put under the grips if I have to. Still a bummer missing out on a nice riding day. :x

Now that I think about it, I went out for a twilight ride yesterday and had to use my lights on the way back. I seem to recall riding over narrow piece of wood, but didn't see it clearly. I just remember thinking, "was that a carpet tack strip?" It was dark, so who knows, but funny it went through my mind.

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Re: My econo-e-bike

Post by ZeroEm » Sep 25 2020 7:38am

They sell tubes that are cut and capped to change them out without taking off the wheel. was looking for the name, BillVon uses them. Will keep looking for them.
Wax my chain, buy the caners wax from Grocery store. Have a big pan and out door grill with a burner. Don't wash my chain in anything but Wax. The hot wax bath seems to clean it. Most use a spray wax. My work experience tells me that an over night soak in 90wt gear lube would work great but dirty and nasty.

You have a nice setup keep up the good work.
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Re: My econo-e-bike

Post by E-HP » Sep 25 2020 12:07pm

ZeroEm wrote:
Sep 25 2020 7:38am
They sell tubes that are cut and capped to change them out without taking off the wheel. was looking for the name, BillVon uses them. Will keep looking for them.
Wax my chain, buy the caners wax from Grocery store. Have a big pan and out door grill with a burner. Don't wash my chain in anything but Wax. The hot wax bath seems to clean it. Most use a spray wax. My work experience tells me that an over night soak in 90wt gear lube would work great but dirty and nasty.

You have a nice setup keep up the good work.
Interim report:

The wheel is off. Axle nuts were nice a tight, like when I put them on a year ago. Inspection of the torque arms was good. I could see the points of stress/contact on the Grin torque arm, but no deformation from the axle. I'll be slightly modifying the right side arm, since it doesn't have enough clearance for removal, unless I loosed up or remove the derailleur. Dropouts showed no signs of deformation, so it looks like they are holding up to the regen (I have the right side arm tensioned in a direction against the regen force).

When I pulled out the tube and tire liner, I could immediately tell that the tire liner had shifted, with only about 2/3 positioned correctly, and the rest shifted to one side and another. There was little pieces of rubber inside the casing, and it looks like the liners shift around enough as to wear the inside casing. I could see the spots where I could start to see the threads. I couldn't find any punctures in the tire anywhere, nor on the tube, so I filled it with air to test under water. The leak was on hard to see, but I could see by the imprint on the tube and tire that the tube had a longitudinal abrasion, caused by rubbing on the liner, and when I squeezed it, the air started leaking. Balmorhea cautioned me about this, and sure enough he was right. More harm that good.

First issue will be solved with a new tube, and using the old tube as a liner and chucking the Tuffy liners (still deciding whether to pull the front wheel off to liberate if from the liner). Need to make a trip to Wally World this afternoon. I thought I had slimed this tube, but apparently not; but probably good I didn't mask the problem too much longer.

The replacement washer for the freewheel side fit perfectly without clearance issues. I was almost certain I'd need to turn down the diameter a bit, but nope! Save some time for the real diagnosis that needs to take place; aligning my wheel and frame. Both dropouts could do with some fine filing to get the axle to seat deeper, and with the tire off, I can get a straightedge in place to check the vertical alignment, so that's where I'm starting.

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Re: My econo-e-bike

Post by Balmorhea » Sep 25 2020 1:44pm

E-HP wrote:
Sep 25 2020 12:07pm
The leak was on hard to see, but I could see by the imprint on the tube and tire that the tube had a longitudinal abrasion, caused by rubbing on the liner, and when I squeezed it, the air started leaking. Balmorhea cautioned me about this, and sure enough he was right. More harm that good.
Seeing is believing. I see it pretty often at work.

Using a thick “thorn resistant” tube doesn’t have a downside other than extra weight and a subtle effect on ride quality. That’s probably the best preventive that doesn’t require a new tire. Local pedicabbers would use these, and then cut them open to serve as seamless thick liners when they finally did get punctured. I don’t know if the cut edge of a thick tube would chafe at the new tube, but those guys didn’t usually have to wait long for the next puncture anyway.
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Re: My econo-e-bike

Post by E-HP » Sep 25 2020 1:52pm

Balmorhea wrote:
Sep 25 2020 1:44pm
Local pedicabbers would use these, and then cut them open to serve as seamless thick liners when they finally did get punctured. I don’t know if the cut edge of a thick tube would chafe at the new tube, but those guys didn’t usually have to wait long for the next puncture anyway.
I'm going to go with the double tube. I figure since it's rubber, it won't slide around as much as the Tuffy liners, which are thick, slippery, and have sharp edges by comparison. :thumb:

On the dropouts, I checked the alignment, and sure enough, it looked like a very slight tilt due to how the axles fit into them. I used a couple of fine jeweler's files to touch up the edges to allow the left side axle to sit maybe a half millimeter further in. That was enough to align the wheel using my straight edge, to straight edges I placed against both the frame and front wheel. I smoothed out the transition in the dropout with a curved jeweler's file and got rid of any edges that could promote stress cracks.

I'm going to do several other checks on the alignment before bolting things back up, but need to get to Wally World for a replacement tube (too anxious to ride to order one).

EDIT: Back up and running! After getting the dropouts fine tuned and the wheel sitting plumb, I was able to tweak the wheel dishing back to where it was. Just got back from a test ride, and it looks like that fixed the issue, or at least 90% better. I can't tell if there is still a very slight lean, or it that's just something like muscle memory or just in my mind since it tracks great now, including riding with no hands. My left handgrip is slightly out of line with the right, so maybe it will all feel perfect after adjusting that. Still, I'm calling is a success, and the fact that everything worked fine after hooking the wires back up is a bonus :wink: .

10/28/20 - My battery shipped, so now it's literally on the slow boat from China. In the mean time, I'm pretty happy with my 5A charger. It's not as fast as charging lipos, but if I start charging my main pack first, then set up the lipos to charge, then by the time I stop at around 4V, and put them back on my bike, the main pack has gotten a decent charge too. Riding to charging time ratio has gone way up :D

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Re: My econo-e-bike

Post by E-HP » Oct 07 2020 10:25pm

OK, not sure I should be concerned, but based on the tracking number, my new battery is supposed to arrive on Friday. That's 3 weeks early, so I'm suspicious.

I got the battery from UPP's ebay store, 52V 28Ah 40A BMS. After the purchase, I received a call, from China I think. It was UPP. The rep asked me to verify what type of motor I intended to use the battery with. Basically, she was wondering if I wanted the 30A BMS version, since she could ship that faster out of their US warehouse, and that she had sent me an email but didn't hear back. I told her that I'd read it then respond, since it was pretty hard communicating on the phone. I confirmed via email that I wanted the 40A BMS version and then received a reply that she would get the order in for production and testing.

I bought my current battery from UPP and the transaction went smoothly. I'm hoping I don't open the box and see a battery spec'd with a 30A BMS :shock:, but there's no way a battery from China would arrive in less that two weeks. Maybe they found a 40A version in their US warehouse after all :roll:...

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Re: My econo-e-bike

Post by thundercamel » Oct 12 2020 8:47am

Good luck! I'm guessing it didn't arrive yet? Personally, if I had to work with a pre-built battery, I'd swap out the BMS for a smart bluetooth one anyway, so I can monitor cell group voltages.

Just to ease your worries, :lol:
[youtube]JCaDz_2YcGQ[/youtube]
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Re: My econo-e-bike

Post by E-HP » Oct 12 2020 9:47am

thundercamel wrote:
Oct 12 2020 8:47am
Good luck! I'm guessing it didn't arrive yet? Personally, if I had to work with a pre-built battery, I'd swap out the BMS for a smart bluetooth one anyway, so I can monitor cell group voltages.

Just to ease your worries, :lol:
[youtube]JCaDz_2YcGQ[/youtube]
I wonder how that configuration works for charging? Seems like it would always overcharge the packs by 0.7V due to the voltage drop across the diodes, but maybe I need to think it though more carefully.

Anyway, I got the battery, and so far it seems to be performing as advertised. I was able to pull over 40A for just under a half mile climbing, and over 50A for the last leg where the grade increased even more. I had charged to 4.1V per cell, and after a 25 mile test ride, the little battery indicator on the battery still showed all LEDs lit. I was running with my 6S lipos in series, but it looks like the capacity is quite a bit more than my old 20Ah pack.

The test ride was definitely the funnest ride I've gone on with my bike. No lack of power in any of the situations I was in, and I found on many occasions, I still had more throttle to go while climbing rather than having it pegged on full. However, it wasn't the best ride, since I hit a big hunk of glass on my ride home, 1 inch of which ripped through my tire and tube, leaving a 3/4" gash in the casing. The hole was so big, the tire went flat in literally 5 seconds, and I could see the tube through the gash while pulling out the hunk of glass. I guess I was looking for a reason to replace these Crazy Bobs, but now I'm out of commission until I decide on replacement tires. I may go back to knobbies, since during my test ride, I was at the top of a pretty rocky downhill section and decided to turn around, because my tires weren't up to it :shock:

I stopped near what I thought was the top of the hill I was testing my bike on, so I could check the motor temp. Slightly warm, and the controller and battery were cold.
Top 01 s.jpg
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This last leg is a little over 22%, but it turned out that the hill kept going around the curve at the "top". The motor was pulling 51A at 78V on this section, or 4kW.
Top 02 s.jpg
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The hill was 18%-20% up to this point. The motor was pulling 3400W, 44A
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View from the top, where I turned around since my tires weren't up to the task for a steep descent.
Top 04 s.jpg
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20 minutes earlier I was riding along the bay, in the fog, just off to the right of the pic above.
Bottom s.jpg
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thundercamel   10 kW

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Re: My econo-e-bike

Post by thundercamel » Oct 12 2020 3:48pm

Oh good, I'm glad the battery turned out as requested! Man, those are some nice views, and the power available sounds great! I do use the Marathon MTB tire on my wife's bike (with puncture resistant tubes on all bikes), and not only did it give me the impression of being quite puncture resistant, but the grip on pavement isn't lacking at all to me. The previous tire and regular tube got a snake bite puncture, and like you experienced deflated in about 5 seconds.
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Re: My econo-e-bike

Post by E-HP » Oct 12 2020 6:08pm

Took me a while to choose the Crazy Bobs, but after riding them for a while, I'm definitely going with something else next. I've thought about the Marathon, but I'm leaning toward better offroad traction now. I replaced my rear tire with the old Forte knobby I was using before so I could get my bike up a running again. I layered in two extra tubes for some additional protection. The Forte kind of sucks on asphalt since the sidewalls are paper think so cornering feels squishy. It reminded me about how much additional noise knobbies make on the road, not too bad, just a higher pitched hum. But I need knobs, because I don't like having the opportunity to ride a steep rocky descent, and chickening out because I don't have the tires.

The hole in my Crazy Bob tire is big enough to put my thumb through it, so it's going in the trash. That was a huge hunk of glass.

Battery capacity seems to be penciling out. I rode around on for a while just now, and with about 45 miles on the new pack, with lots of throttle since I charged up, it's sitting a little above 52V. The lipos are sitting at 3.73V per cell, so I'll charge them before I go out again.

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Re: My econo-e-bike

Post by Balmorhea » Oct 12 2020 7:35pm

E-HP wrote:
Oct 12 2020 6:08pm
Took me a while to choose the Crazy Bobs, but after riding them for a while, I'm definitely going with something else next.
I used a 20" Crazy Bob on my cargo bike for a minute, but it made noise from the beginning, and I eventually discovered the casing was delaminated. Until I figured that out, I was convinced something on the bike was being rubbed by the tire, but I couldn't find it. It made me crazy, but not Bob.

Anyway, I was not impressed. After that I used Kenda Coupe, which was fine but didn't last especially long, and then Maxxis Hookworm, which has been reinforcing its reputation for hardiness and dependability.
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Re: My econo-e-bike

Post by E-HP » Oct 13 2020 4:11pm

I ended up ordering these tires, which should arrive on Thursday. Not much info on them, but they are supposed to have low rolling resistance, the the edge tread pattern is what I've been looking for when transitioning from dirt to pavement. The tread looks decent for offroad too. They're cheap, so worth a gamble for me.

https://www.performancebike.com/vittori ... 0?v=416459

Still exploring the true potential of my new battery pack. I set the CA throttle to "bypass" to get a feel for what no ramping adjustment feels like, and even though I was prepared, I still almost landed on my rear, cutting the throttle when the front tire was about a foot off the ground. Then I went back to the CA ramp setting and up it to 50V/sec. to see how that setting works across the range. From a dead stop, or slight roll, it's a little more wheelying than I want, but I noticed that the ramp also affects throttle roll on in the mid range. That extra mid-range acceleration is really nice, so I'll live with a slightly twitchy throttle in order to take advantage of the mid-range response :D

Still need to play around more with the current and power thresholds though. I upped the max power in the CA settings and saw 4800 watts during hard acceleration, but noticed for the first time that my motor felt hot to the touch after all of the hot rodding around. Which means either lowering the thresholds, or riding more sensibly, the latter of which takes more discipline :confused:

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Re: My econo-e-bike

Post by Hummina Shadeeba » Oct 13 2020 4:28pm

surely they need to be more slick to have low rolling resistance. and the more supple the better. and a thinner innertube or even a latex tube for the win.

https://www.bicyclerollingresistance.com/


https://www.modernbike.com/product-2126239246
i ride with these and will go offroad sometimes but I'll turn slowly.

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Re: My econo-e-bike

Post by Balmorhea » Oct 14 2020 2:26am

Hummina Shadeeba wrote:
Oct 13 2020 4:28pm
surely they need to be more slick to have low rolling resistance. and the more supple the better. and a thinner innertube or even a latex tube for the win.
Yes, but rolling resistance is a function of the volume of rubber and the degree it's distorted. A thick but smooth treaded tire can easily have as much hysteresis as a thinner tire with more tread features.

ThickSlick is a good tire, but there's no way it's as fast as a tire like Rene Herse Rat Trap Pass, which is similarly smooth but much thinner. ThickSlick will resist punctures and wear better, though. It's one of my favorites.
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Re: My econo-e-bike

Post by Hummina Shadeeba » Oct 14 2020 9:24am

How bout a big slick such as the thick slick that’s pumped hard? I think it will do better then a thin if pumped to same hardness and a plus with the rounder contact patch of the bigger tire right? And if a thin tire it will be lower rolling resistance on a smooth surface but if it’s rough.. at some point thick n big n even soft will trump I think. ?

Maybe u mean thinner tire than the rat trap pass and think as fat as the thick slick I have:
https://www.nashbar.com/rene-herse-rat- ... TgQAvD_BwE
Last edited by Hummina Shadeeba on Oct 14 2020 9:33am, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: My econo-e-bike

Post by Hummina Shadeeba » Oct 14 2020 9:29am

Balmorhea wrote:
Oct 14 2020 2:26am
Hummina Shadeeba wrote:
Oct 13 2020 4:28pm
surely they need to be more slick to have low rolling resistance. and the more supple the better. and a thinner innertube or even a latex tube for the win.
Yes, but rolling resistance is a function of the volume of rubber and the degree it's distorted. A thick but smooth treaded tire can easily have as much hysteresis as a thinner tire with more tread features.

ThickSlick is a good tire, but there's no way it's as fast as a tire like Rene Herse Rat Trap Pass, which is similarly smooth but much thinner. ThickSlick will resist punctures and wear better, though. It's one of my favorites.

These I have too:
https://cambriabike.com/products/michel ... dUQAvD_BwE

Cheap, slick, and light

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Re: My econo-e-bike

Post by thundercamel » Oct 14 2020 11:56am

E-HP wrote:
Oct 12 2020 6:08pm
Took me a while to choose the Crazy Bobs, but after riding them for a while, I'm definitely going with something else next. I've thought about the Marathon, but I'm leaning toward better offroad traction now. I replaced my rear tire with the old Forte knobby I was using before so I could get my bike up a running again. I layered in two extra tubes for some additional protection. The Forte kind of sucks on asphalt since the sidewalls are paper think so cornering feels squishy. It reminded me about how much additional noise knobbies make on the road, not too bad, just a higher pitched hum. But I need knobs, because I don't like having the opportunity to ride a steep rocky descent, and chickening out because I don't have the tires.
Not the regular Marathon, but the Marathon MTB tire, pictured below. In addition to what I was saying before, I also like that it has a continuous center rib which gives more durability where it's needed, and kills the noise on pavement. It's just hard to catch deals when they're on sale.

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My Ebike builds - Existing bikes, affordable motor kits, self built 14s6p batteries - Now with more recumbent!

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