Belt Drive

Brambor

Well-Known Member
I have been using belt drive on our bikes for about 2 years. We have two Scott Sub 10's with belt drive and we love the cleanliness and functionality of this system.

It is too bad I only found 2 ebikes out there with a belt drive system - Faraday Porteur and the other one (forgot the name and brand) :)
 

James

Well-Known Member
I have been using belt drive on our bikes for about 2 years. We have two Scott Sub 10's with belt drive and we love the cleanliness and functionality of this system.

It is too bad I only found 2 ebikes out there with a belt drive system - Faraday Porteur and the other one (forgot the name and brand) :)
The other brand I know of that uses belt drive is Grace and they have it on the MX2: http://www.grace-bikes.com/Bikes/Mx2

They sure are cleaner!
 

Larry Pizzi

Active Member
You have some good questions!

One of the reasons more ebikes don't use belt drives vs. chain drives, is torque sensing systems on many hub motors which is done on the axle or the drop-out. If you use a belt, it needs to be under high tension for this type of torque sensor to function properly which causes the belt to wear our more quickly then a chain. There are bottom bracket torque sensors available but they are comparatively much more expensive.

The best combo for a belt drive bike is a center motor system, like Bosch and an internally geared hub. You will see these as the eBike market continues to expand.
 
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Brambor

Well-Known Member
in the last few days I have been trying to dig up any information about the Grace Easy. It appears it is offered by one CA shop

Aside from Court's Review there is this glowing review from Australia. Not knowing at this time whether the ST2 will be belt drive and somewhat scared by the starting price of the Stromer ST2, I have an reignited interest in the Grace Easy, especially when fitted with the Brooks seat and handlebars as shown on their corporate site.

I would most likely have to purchase another battery pack and a charger (not a huge problem) but the lack of a dealer near me detracts from pulling the trigger on buying this bike.
 

Court

Administrator
Staff member
It's a tough call Brambor... I really enjoyed the simplicity and integration of the Grace Easy. It does leverage the BionX system (which is proven and well supported). If you do lean this way, I'd suggest searching for a normal BionX dealer nearby who could provide drive system maintenance and support. They would probably be excited to see the bike since they wouldn't be carrying it and might be more excited about, and qualified for, helping you out :)
 

James

Well-Known Member
It's a tough call Brambor... I really enjoyed the simplicity and integration of the Grace Easy. It does leverage the BionX system (which is proven and well supported). If you do lean this way, I'd suggest searching for a normal BionX dealer nearby who could provide drive system maintenance and support. They would probably be excited to see the bike since they wouldn't be carrying it and might be more excited about, and qualified for, helping you out :)
Good call Court. Having a "Home store" is worth it's weight in gold!
 

Brambor

Well-Known Member
In my case it requires driving to another state, about 70 minutes away to see any kind of ebike offerings. Not a showstopper but I would also prefer my local shop. I did approach the owner of my local shop. Maybe he'll make some headways but if not then we're talking about covering some miles for support.
 

James

Well-Known Member
My store is about 70 miles away too. Still worth it IMO. Like I've posted before, I've had them drive out and replace a bunk charger and the peace of mind that gave me was priceless.
 

Brambor

Well-Known Member
hi Ravi. Is the simbb only throttle powered? I migt have misunderstood the review but it seems there is NO electric pedal assist at all
 

Court

Administrator
Staff member
Cool Ravi, thanks. The unit I tried had a chain and cassette (and it was the 29C, not sure if that's different than this new 29er) but the Optibike guys use the Rohloff Speedhub (internally geared 8 speed hub) on the higher end R-Series like the R8 so I wouldn't be surprised if they've built that into the SIMBB.

They tinker around quite a bit and are used to doing custom stuff... I think they are still dialing it in or maybe going to offer the belt drive as an upgrade option? And yes Brambor, the one I test rode only offered throttle mode, no pedal assist (but I urged Jim to add assist because the SIMBB system is my favorite in their entire line, rides super smooth and powerful).
 

Brambor

Well-Known Member
the lack of pedal assist and the inability to switch batteries are showstoppers for me to put the optibike on my top list.

the company, the warranty are big motivators. The idea of self contained unit is PERFECT and a huge plus.
 

Jim

New Member
Cool Ravi, thanks. The unit I tried had a chain and cassette (and it was the 29C, not sure if that's different than this new 29er) but the Optibike guys use the Rohloff Speedhub (internally geared 8 speed hub) on the higher end R-Series like the R8 so I wouldn't be surprised if they've built that into the SIMBB.

They tinker around quite a bit and are used to doing custom stuff... I think they are still dialing it in or maybe going to offer the belt drive as an upgrade option? And yes Brambor, the one I test rode only offered throttle mode, no pedal assist (but I urged Jim to add assist because the SIMBB system is my favorite in their entire line, rides super smooth and powerful).
Optibike will be offering the SIMBB 29 with the Rohloff and Gates belt drive in a month or so. The SIMBB will be on display at the Gates Belt Drive booth at Taipei bike show next month. Also, tt looks like the SIMBB will be the official bike for the Boulder Vally Velodrome when it opens in a few months. We are finding the traditional road bike riders go nuts over the handling of the SIMBB. They say it feels so much like a regular road bike. The concentration of the weight in the bottom bracket and rigidity the SIMBB creates in the frame, makes this unique feeling.
 

Ravi Kempaiah

Well-Known Member
the lack of pedal assist and the inability to switch batteries are showstoppers for me to put the optibike on my top list.
the company, the warranty are big motivators. The idea of self contained unit is PERFECT and a huge plus.
I had a $1K coupon for this bike. They sent it to me when I filled some questionnaires and newsletter etc. The price of the bike during the pre-order stage came to ~3750 (with coupon) and now I see its $5700!!
I wish I had given you that coupon but unfortunately, its not working anymore :(