Ebikemotion x35 speed limiter "fix"

Karl

New Member
I'm considering the Orbea Gain with the rear hub motor (Ebikemotion X35 v.2) and wondering if anyone has an idea how to "fix" the speed limiter of 25 kph. There is a sensor in the right rear dropout and 20 magnets in the cassette lock ring. Do you think removing 10 of the magnets (every other one) would allow the bike to theoretically go at twice the speed (not allowing for the physics of resistances)?
 

Bruce Arnold

Well-Known Member
Do you think removing 10 of the magnets (every other one) would allow the bike to theoretically go at twice the speed (not allowing for the physics of resistances)?
No. All that would do would be to make the cadence sensing jerkier. Nothing to do with speed of the bike at all.

The speed limiting function is in software, not hardware. Someone may know of a way to hack the Orbea Gain. It might even be a menu item on the LCD Display, as it is with my CrossCurrent S. I have no idea how common that may be.

Your alternative, and it's a good one, is this: if speed is important to you, then prioritize bikes that meet that criterion, and look for ones that have the features that appeal to you about the Orbea.

Unless you just like customizing and modifying (like @Reid whose bike at this point is a CCS in name only ;)), in which case, enjoy!
 

Karl

New Member
I'm still not understanding. It would seem like the software needs a sensor to tell it how fast the bike is going in order to turn off the motor when the max. speed limit is reached. The Fazua motor has a sensor on the left chainstay and a spoke magnet which can be hacked by moving the sensor to the other side of the chainstay and the magnet to the crank arm (which would reduce the speed data to about 1/2 or 1/3). The Orbea Gain has the sensor in the right dropout and the magnets in the cassette lockring. Unless the software is using GPS data, the wheel revolutions would be the best indicator of the speed. If the wheel size can be programmed, then that would be the easiest method to delimit the speed. The problem I'm having is that stealthy eBikes are just becoming available in the U.S. The Bianchi Aria eRoad looks like my favorite and it has the same rear hub motor as the Orbea Gain. I only want to gain a few mph to about 20 mph, which the Orbea distributor said would be the case for bikes coming to the U.S. However, since that is not carved in stone, I want to know that I won't be stuck at 15 mph.
 

Ed B

Member
I'm still not understanding. It would seem like the software needs a sensor to tell it how fast the bike is going in order to turn off the motor when the max. speed limit is reached. .
Karl - did you ever find a solution? We now know that the Orbea Gain series is rated for 20mph in the US. And I've confirmed with eBikeMotion that the component specs are identical in the EU vs US... the US controller is just programmed differently to allow a 20mph top speed... which will lower total range by a small amount . I've also been told by eBikeMotion that the controller is not 'end-user' programmable. But the US price premium over EU bikes equipped with the X35 system is close to $500** for the Orbea line and even greater (in excess of $1,000) if looking at a Ribble etc. (**part of this could now be US tariffs on Chinese exports etc.)

I'd be surprised if there were not a work around for programming the X35 controller... but I haven't found it yet.

The Orbea Gain M20 as the best weight to power to cost ratio that I've found yet. (The Bianchi has almost identical specs but seems to have a much higher name 'premium').
 

Karl

New Member
Good news that you heard the Orbea has a 20 mph limiter... hopefully, that means the Bianchi Aria eRoad will be the same... I can ride at 15 mph without a motor and need just a bit of help climbing and going faster. The Bianchi distributor said yesterday that they expect more bikes by the end of November... so far, only 55 cm. Aria eRoads have arrived here. I'm a loyal Bianchi fan for over 50 years now and I don't mind paying a little more for a bike that I really like. If I need to, I think there is a fair chance that removing magnets in the cassette lock ring may be a viable hack to increase the speed limit. Also, the dealer has the app to program the bike and I might be able to get the app or have them do it for me. The bad news is that I'll probably get my bike just before Oregon's winter hits.
 

Ed B

Member
Also, the dealer has the app to program the bike and I might be able to get the app or have them do it for me.
Let us know how that works out. I dont think it will be an issue getting a US destination eBikeMotion X35 programmed for 20mph. It will probably come that way. The dealer manual for Obea/eBikemotion is here https://www.orbea.com/downloads/Dealer_APP_Manual_Gain_EN.pdf however its vague on speed programming and implies that programming is 'secured' by the serial number... i.e. they know if a unit is a EU or US unit.

The Aria is certainly a good looking bike!
 

meteo

New Member
I think there is a fair chance that removing magnets in the cassette lock ring may be a viable hack to increase the speed limit.
Sorry to bust Your hopes, but no chance.
The ring is not used to measure the speed of the bike, it is on the wrong side of the freehub for that purpose. If you are not pedaling, this sensor does not see any movement. What it does is measuring how fast you are turning the cassette via the chain. If this is the same as the rotation of the back wheel (which will be measured inside the motor hub) the software assumes, you are puting force on the pedals and powers up, unless the max speed is reached, measured again internaly by the hub. (By the way, this way you can get the motor to do all the work, by pedaling without applying force. Don this on my Gain D20)

So in order to tweak mechanically, You'd have to open the motor hub and find the sensor there. (There has to be one as well, because the motor has a freewheeling mechanism, otherwise the motor controller could see the speed directly without an explicit sensor.)

The only other option I see is via software, either by directly setting up the speed limit or by tampering the wheel circumfence.
 

Karl

New Member
Sounds reasonable... except, the wheel is always going to turn the same speed as the cassette unless you stop pedaling. So it seems the cassette lockring magnets could detect both speed and pedaling. However, I know I could be wrong. Also, it looks like the end-user app allows setting the wheel size, at least for the Bianchi app, which is probably essentially the same for the Orbea. If the Orbea is set for 20mph max speed, then I would think the Bianchi would be the same. The Bianchi distributor thought it was set at 15 mph even in the US. It could be that all this is so new that the answers to many questions need more time to develop. So far, only 55 cm Bianchi Arias have arrived in the US, but other sizes are expected about the end of November and most of those are backorders (like my 57 cm).
So, the big question for meteo: How do you like your bike? Does it have enough power and have the max speed limit of 20 mph?
 

Ed B

Member
If you have outstanding questions on the speed, I'd recommend emailing eBikeMotion (they were very responsive) or trying Bianchi USA. I'd be very surprised if it was not set to 20mph because otherwise they would be at a competitive disadvantage. The wheel option is odd because neither Bianchi or Orbea make another eBikeMotion/road bike with anything other than 700s (w various widths) .
 

meteo

New Member
Sounds reasonable... except, the wheel is always going to turn the same speed as the cassette unless you stop pedaling. So it seems the cassette lockring magnets could detect both speed and pedaling.
You're correct, it does not turn faster in any case, but it can turn slower. Thats why I wrote that if its at (nearly) the same speed as the wheel (therefore there has to be a second way of measuring the wheel speed), the motor will turn up. :)

[Update]
Ohh, now I've got it. Because the speed is only relevant ,if your pedaling that could be used.. tricky. ;)
Then pedaling slow enough would let the motor still be running, even if its too fast. I will check that with the bike in my working stand.

How do you like your bike? Does it have enough power and have the max speed limit of 20 mph?
I love it :cool:
It feels really lightwheigth and handy. Actually when I'm not commuting, the motor is mostley turned of. Even then it feels lighter then my steel Randonneur. I'd say you don't realize the e- if you are not using it. In germany the speed limit for e-bikes is 25kmh (roughly 15mph), otherwise you need a license plate..:rolleyes: So its limited to this. Its hard to tell when its shut down, because the transition is very smooth, but it seems to assist until 27kmh (17mph) ..

On the minus side, the motor starts a little bit late, due to the way of measuring discussed before. The motor starts up after around a half turn of the crank and stops after around half a second after stopping the crank. Thats something you have to get used to and it makes starting at a steep hill harder.

Speaking of the motor. It feels strong enough for me, not really less then the bosch whatever I tried once. In full power mode and without assisting the motor (just fake pedaling) I reach around 17kmh (11mph). The turn on is reasonable smooth in full power mode. In that mode you hear the motor humming, but its not loud and a nice tone imho. In the lower modes (I use it usually at 60% max power) you feel or hear almost nothing, it just feels easier :)
 
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Karl

New Member
Dealer said my Bianchi Aria eRoad would arrive at my house in about 2 weeks (Thanksgiving)... at the distributor in Burlingame, CA now. I'm upgrading to SRAM Red eTap, tubeless tires, and front brake on right side (not exactly an upgrade, but I've had the right lever for front brake for over 50 yrs. and not about to change now). He also said the speed limiter is set to 20 mph, so no worries about how to hack it.
 

Figs

Active Member
@Karl Front brake lever :)

I have rode well over 200,000 miles on motorcycles in my life, front on the left drives my crazy. After over 2,300 miles on my eBike I’m starting to accept it. But I still don’t like it.
 

Karl

New Member
I did a test ride on my Bianchi Aria eRoad today and it was amazing. I went up hills I couldn't do before, even my steep, gravel driveway. Speed limiter is set to 20 mph so I'm happy. Plenty of power... I'm not looking for a motorcycle, just a boost since I'm 70 yo and have atrial fibrillation that cuts my power in about half. Since I started racing over 50 yrs. ago, I haven't been happy riding slow, short, and flat for the last 10 yrs. Now I can go out to ride hills and longer distances.aria on epo.jpg I don't like Shimano, so I switched to SRAM Red eTap for wireless electric shifting. I also switched to tubeless.
 

Ed B

Member
Great! Thanks for that...

I have an Orbea Gain M20i on order in that same size and thats about the weight I expected... had to go with the shallower Mavic Aksium Elite wheels vs the Cosmic Pro Carbon's because according to the US distributor bikes with the Cosmics are not going to ship until late March. The Visions are a nice option.

PS I used to live in Burlingame and did the Trousdale Dr climb to Skyline all the time...
 

PD123

New Member
I'm considering the Orbea Gain with the rear hub motor (Ebikemotion X35 v.2) and wondering if anyone has an idea how to "fix" the speed limiter of 25 kph. There is a sensor in the right rear dropout and 20 magnets in the cassette lock ring. Do you think removing 10 of the magnets (every other one) would allow the bike to theoretically go at twice the speed (not allowing for the physics of resistances)?
Removing 10 magnets definitely does not allow the bike to go at twice the speed. In fact it removed the ability of the sensor to trigger the motor at all. The software algorithm must cleverly detect the correct gap between pulses from the magnets...
 

Karl

New Member
PD123, you mean you tried it? I'm afraid to try it because if it doesn't work, how do you fix it when a part like a lockring might be very hard to get, at least for now when the bikes are so new. I'm waiting for Bianchi to release a new rear derailleur hanger since the hanger (I am told) is "Shimano specific", meaning it has an outboard offset instead of being straight... this results in my upgraded (from Ultegra) SRAM eTap will not shift into the largest cog... don't really need a 32 much when I have the motor, but it is a bit annoying... Bianchi says they will have a straight hanger soon. FYI, I found the battery lasts about 35-40 miles of rolling hills when the motor is used mostly at the highest output. I'd probably like a 25 mph max speed, but 20 is actually pretty good... 15 mph would have sucked for me.