Volt Bike Mariner 2016: So far so happy! Observations as they happen.

Discussion in 'Voltbike Forum' started by Cnugget, Aug 11, 2016.

  1. Cnugget

    Cnugget Active Member

    I just picked up my Mariner direct from the warehouse less than a week ago now (Aug 11 2016). George was great and let me give the bike a try. I have to say it's soo much fun but perhaps I'm still gushing over electric bikes in general(discovered they existed less than a month ago). The bike gets lots of looks. Between the matt black paint, the folding frame & the fat tires its hard for people not to turn their heads... Especially when I zip by hehehe.

    My family has now purchased a of couple of other Volt bikes after seeing mine. I have completed 2 commutes to work so far and some other recreational zipping around. So far I have gone 30km's on a single charge in a very hilly neighbourhood. It fits in my car, has a throttle, fenders, rat trap, helmet, a big comfy seat and for my first E-Bike (IMHO) a very good value. What's not to like? :) It's surprisingly easy to pedal without "power" more so than some other bikes I've tried on OFF. (Not comparing to a regular bike though). Unsure if it's because of the tire diameter or my imagination?

    I guess on my wish list would be a level zero while the computer is on & an LCD screen that can dim at night, though cardboard will work just fine if needed. One can always wish for more battery eh?

    This bike does "whoosh" you off quite quickly when the assist or throttle kicks in just as so you are aware. Hold on! Something to get used to, but it's grown on me and I love the take off punch now. It sort of reminds me of Harry Potter learning how to fly his broom in Quidditch. The tires being fat and treaded make a decent amount of noise and can mask the engine sounds.

    I will need to get the gears and brakes adjusted a wee bit but I think that that's pretty common on a new bike? Did I mention the disc brakes actually stop? Maybe this well help someone else checking out ebikes and looking at Volt bike.

    Cheers :) ~Cnugget
     
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  3. Cnugget

    Cnugget Active Member

    Max speed on the Volt Mariner to date: ~28 & 29 km per hour before the engine cuts out.
    Max range on a single charge to date: 50km (less hilly terrain while being frugal.. aka not assist level 9/9)
    Hill: 180lbs up almost 900 meters in 45mins up a 7% paved mountain. Passed over a dozen road bikers. hehe SeymourResevoirVoltBikes.JPG SeymourEbikeRide.png SeymourMtnVoltBike.JPG
     
    vincent likes this.
  4. Cnugget

    Cnugget Active Member

    I was able to make one of my wishes come true after reading through the panel manual. http://www.voltbike.ca/images/Voltbike_Mariner_LCD.pdf
    There does appear to be a few extra's not included in this manual though. Hoping to decipher some of the added features. Double click on the Power Button to enter if you dare. One of those items includes changing assist from 1-9 to 0-9!! Sadly throttle does not work in zero.:( I will be launching myself off less now and even the chicken's can test ride it.:p I am very grateful for the low front bar to date. If I don't like the terrain I just BRAKE, jump forward, stop and exit. The exits are easy here and easy there.
    WHOA!! This bike looks like the SSR Motorsports Trail Viper: https://electricbikereview.com/ssr-motorsports/trail-viper/ Is this a new category? The FOLDING ELECTRIC FAT BIKE?

    I have noticed that the ODO & hence speed does not appear to be accurate under the tire size 20" inches. I have been fiddling with 24" and working my way down. 22" seems close but 21" may be the ticket. Still gushing over my new commute and ride.. She's so purdy!! & dirty. Doh! Must wash..
     
    vincent likes this.
  5. Cnugget

    Cnugget Active Member

    Setting the tire size to 22" most closely matches my GPS distance. Just over 400km logged in just under 2 weeks. Still happy. :D

    Seems like a similar frame style can be found on-line through Alibaba though the neck locking system does not seem to be as secure as Volt Bikes.

    I've also found a Toronto seller with a same but different bike(less stable locking neck) if you like the used car salesmen personality. :p Check out the associated youtube clip for a chuckle or two. http://www.hoverflyebikes.com/catalog

    The claim on this bike battery is a whopping 100km on a single charge and states it as a "new world record" without really supporting documents! Perhaps it is in a book somewhere..."(48V 20.4ah lithium battery )" It does sound intriguing as the Volt battery is 10.5ah. Would double the amp-hour's double the distance? I would love to get 100km out of a single charge... drool.

    All said an done I would still buy Volt. They check the bikes to make sure everything is running before sending it out so there is some kind of quality control going on.
     
    vincent likes this.
  6. vincent

    vincent Active Member

    cnugget does your display do watts? curious how the mariner pas works in comparison to the radmini

    and with the throttle are you able to control it in small steps and hold it at a few watts boost or is it wide open pretty quick?
     
  7. Cnugget

    Cnugget Active Member

    I think it display's watts as P for how much power the motor is/can be(ing) put out? It cycles between 0-500/600 ish. It's more zippy on the first half-ish of the battery in general. The PAS is currently set from 0-9 (though default is 1-9 you also have options for 0-5 & 0-3). In level 0 PAS there is no throttle. The higher the PAS the more the motor pushes but sometimes going up a hill (steep~15% grade needs some effort required in pic you can see my heart rate go through the roof cranking it out).

    The throttle is pretty much wide open depending on how much you engage it at any level 1-9. It's pretty sensitive so if your jiggling around on some bumpy terrain the throttle can get jolted with your thumb on it. You can technically get lower levels of output but it pretty much takes off for the most part. I think the motors are the same? 8FUN 48V 500W (BFXWS02).

    There are a few settings that could potentially make adjustments that I'm not aware of as of yet.
    eBikeUPHILL.png
     
  8. Ann M.

    Ann M. Administrator

    @Cnugget, thanks for the detailed observations and nice pics! It helps to hear your real world experiences with the Volt Bike.
     
  9. vincent

    vincent Active Member

    cnugget thanks for the info

    next time you ride it could you see approx what the watts are in each pas level
    interesting that is has 9 levels, are the step ups between each level really small?
     
  10. Cnugget

    Cnugget Active Member

    @vincent UPDATE 1: Pedal Assist Levels

    Working on sorting out the PAS levels. I understand very little about what is going on with the bike so please forgive my descriptions are just the best observations I can make.

    The different levels of PAS appear to pull until you reach an intended speed and then roll off after exceeding that point. It appears like you have access to all the watts the battery can give until you reach the desired speed for that level(also a great indicator your battery is getting low aka pulling less P at higher pass levels). I have been trying to sort out a way to verify this but sorting this out is a bit more challenging than I anticipated. Each level will give you a different amount of watts depending on the terrain. Finding extended flat in my local is a challenge on it's own. The higher assist levels will max out the governor before rolling off on flat terrain (over 32km/20miles) and lower levels bring you up to speed so quickly that it's hard to gauge their exact cut off. o_O blah blah blah... Long story short I will be biking up a very long hill (actually mountain) at each level and trying to get a read out of the ave speed each one pulls at and aprox Watts (or is it watt's?) used. I will be trying to bike at a maintainable speed at each level... I know super un-scientific but it's my kind of fun. Below is the break down of the assist levels in their different user selected modes.
    eBikeASSISTlevels.png

    PS the THROTTLE does indeed deliver variable outputs even at slower speeds if you can get your thumb to stay put long enough. :D
     
  11. vincent

    vincent Active Member

    cnugget thanks for this info

    sounds similar to how the 2015 radrover acts where there is a lot of watts until a certain mph cut off

    this works ok in a lot of hills i think, but does not do so great in the flats
    although i think your bike is 500 watts and the rover is 750 so a bigger boost

    if i got one we would probably use throttle most of the time

    definitely sounds like i need to stick with torque sensor only bikes but so far not seeing any 20 inch fat bikes like that
    and in the little research i have done am not finding a lot of fat bike modifying stuff

    if i get some time off plan to test out some pedego bikes at the phx store, they are cadence like these and i want to see if their pedal assist acts any different

    really appreciate this info, thank you
     
  12. Cnugget

    Cnugget Active Member

    What is it that you are trying to achieve on the flats?
     
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  13. vincent

    vincent Active Member

    i want bikes that the power ramps up slowly through the pas levels

    want a little bit of help in the flats but not full motor power as soon as you hit the button for level 2 etc

    what you describe is a lot or full motor power in the lower levels

    i dont really care if levels 4 and 5 on a 1-5 pas system give out a lot of watts but level 1, 2 and 3 should be more controlled and just helping some

    as an example- right now my 2015 radrover i cannot even pedal in level 2 and keep up, so certainly no resistance for exercise etc
    just have to use throttle on that bike for when i want any power

    if climbing hills i can use level 2 some
     
  14. Cnugget

    Cnugget Active Member

    Ah.. I mostly use the pedal assist levels and not the throttle. While levels 1, 2, & 3... do have some initial take off power I can still pedal and not be out powered by the motor in a continuous state. I did try a Pedago and felt being way out powered by the motor which I did not prefer. Level 1 cuts out at about 8km, level 2 ~10km, level 3 12km and so on. You can pedal as much or as little as you like depending on the level you set it at. It's really nice for cruising in the 25ish km/hr range in my opinion. My heart rate is usually between 120-140bpm when I choose to work more (lazy dependent). The hills of course give me a little more work but I enjoy it. I'm at 725km in just over 3 weeks and I don't believe I'm just phoning it in. Yeehawww eBikes are awesome. ODO was checked with GPS for accuracy. Taking every sunny day in while I can.. soon the rain will come and I may be a chicken. :rolleyes: I still love throttle but don't use it as much as I thought I would (at least at this point) ... mostly for take offs and getting through intersections. Hope this helps.
     
  15. vincent

    vincent Active Member

    it does, thank you

    i would like to use pas more than throttle but on some of my bikes it is not an option , they go too fast

    wish i had the option of trying a lot of these online bikes first before buying

    but the mariner sounds like a great bike and a great deal

    unless another company puts out a 20 inch fat bike this fall i will probably buy one of these

    not overly happy with my radmini right now but hoping rad power will get fixed

    really like the form factor of the 20 inch fat bikes though
     
  16. grench

    grench Well-Known Member

    The power delivery you are searching for comes from a torque sensor not a cadence sensor. Ride a Specialized Turbo or a Stromer and see if this feel is what you are after. There are others but these two IMO are the smoothest and feel like they match your pedal effort.
     
  17. vincent

    vincent Active Member

    thanks grench, sure that is true

    still waiting on my cemoto mods with torque sensor to be done and hoping that will be a nice ride

    i do understand the torque sensing will work better all around but still do not understand why these cadence sensing bikes dont have more controlled watts and mph delivery
    it seems weird that it cannot be done, why cant the power be level 1-20%, level 2-30/40% , level 3 - 50/60% etc ?
    instead of these very low watts and then huge jumps like level 1- 50 watts , level 2- 100 and then level 3 is 500..

    and the other thing is i wanted this form factor, as far as i know there are no 20 inch fat bikes with torque sensing which means i have to buy one of these and modify
     
  18. Cnugget

    Cnugget Active Member

    Torque sensing wasn't for me but it could be for you. I would consider it on a bike that had more efficient tires where you get more human powered bang for buck. With the fat tires (large and small) there is more drag that I could imagine might suck up the energy you put into it. Cadence sensing can be done right.. it just might need more $$ to find the smoother systems. The Bosch mid drive & Yamaha were really well matched for pedal power IMO. I am sure there is a hub system out there too that can find the right balance.

    MARINER UPDATES:
    I loaned out the factory seat from my bike and miss dearly the wide and cushy. The angle of this other sub seat makes me feel less stable and that more force is being pushed onto my arms. Who knew a factory seat could be so reasonably nice. At least I have not loaned out the bike itself. It is in need of a tune up or shop visit soon. Things have started to squeak nearing 800km. How I love walk assist.. It helped me get up a big grassy slope today while out walking the bike in a park. 3 people asked me about the bike today they are quite the lookers the Mariners.:cool:
     
  19. vincent

    vincent Active Member

    interesting, everyone raves about torque sensing

    i feel the same way, surely cadence sensing can be done pretty decent

    having some issues with my radmini and was on the phone with rad power today
    they are getting a lot of feedback that people do not want lots of assist or high watts in the lower pas levels and are trying to change that
    so it is good they are listening
    right now my radmini is acting erratic and i cannot give any good numbers for the pas on it , every time i ride it seems to at different
    will get it figured out i am sure

    very cool on the factory seat
    glad your bike is doing so great for you!
    pretty sure i see one of these in my future lol
     
  20. Cnugget

    Cnugget Active Member

    @vincent Sounds promising over at Rad that they will find a cure to your ill bike. I will hope for soon for ya!

    YAY! 800KM! It's still turning round & round... My bow's bike in Green and my dirty dirty bike rear tire post 1st rain commute. Hope everything works tomorrow! Maybe I should dry out the electronics... hmmmm. I noticed a slight hick-up today on the pass but it could just be all the dirt getting in the way. Time for a cleaning.. though it will be raining again tomorrow!!

    I've found the most accurate read out of the ODO is when the tire size is set to 22 not 20.
    VoltGreen.jpg VoltBikeDirtyRearWheel.jpg
    PS. What @Voltman was saying over here is not true. I have clocked my bike well beyond 45km.. actually into the 60's... :eek: It's was down a mountain :D
     
  21. Cnugget

    Cnugget Active Member

    Inside the monitor settings(double click Power Button to reach) of the Mariner(and Yukon for that matter) are some symbols I have not been able to un-code. Anyone able to help?
    It's an APT 800S of some kind. It appears to have more functions than the 2013 manual suggests.. I can't find a few of the codes and what they mean. Here is what I've got so far:

    S7 - (km/mi)
    bL1 - backlight brightness display
    OFf - auto time(min) display off
    W d - wheel diameter (set to 22)
    bU0 - voltage set (42V)
    PSd - password (enter 1919)
    SPL - speed limit (45km) - gov cuts off before 32km
    CUL - MAX Current Limit set (default 15A)
    HAL - Magnetic Pole numbers of speed sensor (set to 1. Not sure what impact this would have if adjusted)
    ASs - ?
    Hd6 - ?
    HdP - ?
    PAs - levels of assist(set to 0-9 not the default setting)

    Before I go off and clicking, does someone happen to understand this computer/programming speak? :rolleyes: