I bought the geo orbital a while ago. There weren't really any reviews so I had to just take a flying leap. Here's my review;
1) Wheel is solidly constructed. I am not worried about it breaking. The One problem though is the battery pack is loose and vibrates when you ride. This was solved very easily by putting a paper towel wedged in between the frame and the battery. Seems like such a silly problem that would have been so easily fixed in the factory with some foam.
2) There is no way I am getting 20 miles out of this wheel. The most I have gotten is 5 miles. I was worried about this as I am 6'5 and 270lbs, so if you are 150lbs your probably going to get more mileage than I do. I got this wheel to ride to work which is 10 miles one way, I thought since it was rated to get 20 miles, I would be at least able to do 10 given my weight.
3) The weight of the wheel is really annoying. My road bike was very light and easy to move around but after attaching this wheel wrestling this bike in an out of my house is a real chore. This is obviously a drawback to all e-bikes. But it was just surprising how the extra weight affected my overall experience.
4) The throttle ergonomics are horrendous. They designed the throttle to put in any position you can think of on your bike, and I have tried at least 10 different positions. The throw of the throttle is too far, like it moves 90 deg, 30 degs throw would have been fine and less cumbersome. Ideally I would just prefer a push button of simply full throttle or no throttle. The power of this wheel is lacking and I don't need a variable throttle.
5) Regenerative breaking? I don't know what or how that is supposed to work as I have run this thing dry and then I have had to pedal another 5 miles home and the bike did not gain any charge. Riding the bike after the wheel has died is a chore, the ability to disconnect the motor and have the wheel move freely after the battery dies would be a huge improvement.
6) The power is lacking, but that might be my weight.
So I have written a lot of negatives about the wheel but I do like it, it's probably not worth the 995 I paid for it, If the company could fix the complaints I had about the wheel this would be a solid buy
I've had my GeoOrbital for two months and put about 200 miles on it in that time. I agree with your review of the wheel but as I'm 6' and 160lbs my experience may be a bit different.
1) The battery mount does indeed allow for too much vibration and movement of the battery and is my biggest complaint. Considering the cost, necessity, and potential safety hazard of a damaged battery, a couple simple and inexpensive improvements, as in your suggestion of a foam layer, would prevent this vibration and provide a much more stable mount.
2) As far as I am able to determine, I am getting near 18-20 miles per charge. This is using assist and in slight hilly terrain, so who knows what actual is. I also regularly pull a trailer full of groceries which sucks power like crazy! I'm satisfied with the battery performance, but I'd agree it's probably not getting the distance GeoOrbital claims.
3) The weight of this wheel does indeed throw a bike wildly out of normal balance. Every time I pick my bike up I still find it shocking, and have to put the bike back down to adjust. In use, however, I hardly notice the added weight and it hasn't affected my steering or braking in any appreciable way. Free peddling, without any assist from the battery, is another story. For myself it is far to exhausting and impractical with this wheel. If I want to ride using only my own power the wheel needs to come off, period.
4) The throttle length is too short and the throw a bit too long, but were easily solved by my attaching a small clothespin style clamp to the throttle adding a necessary inch of length. I use my palm/thumb to adjust speed and am still able to keep hold of the handlebar and apply the brake at the same time.
5) I have no idea if regenerative braking works either, but the resistance the wheel adds when not powered is significant. Hats off to you for being able to free-peddle 5 miles on this thing, no way I'd be able to.
6) The power provided by the battery could be greater, but is adequate for my needs. in fact, It provides enough power that I'm able to pull a grocery-filled trailer, total combined weight of 300lbs, back from the grocery store with little assistance from myself, a distance of six miles and over 100 ' of elevation change. Coming from a stop with this much weight requires assistance from me, but once I get moving the wheel alone can accelerate to and maintain a speed well beyond my comfort zone!
Overall, I love the GeoOrbital and I don't regret its purchase. The cost is high, no doubt. I was able to get a $100 discount simply by emailing GeoOrbital, but still the cost was significant compared to other options. Why I chose to pay the premium cost was the ease of installation, the ability to quickly revert back and forth with hardly any effort, and remove and carry it with me while shopping, etc. so I don't have to worry about losing it to thieves.