mid drive w/ throttle ?

EddieJ

Well-Known Member
I think throttles on mid-drives are unnecessary. My Yamaha-powered Haibike uses torque sensing, and it pulls from a stop immediately. There's simply no need to override the system to get going.

Same as that. If you need a throttle, buy a motorbike.
 

Chris Nolte

Well-Known Member
Still looking for a stealthy purpose built mid-drive with IGH and throttle that doesn't look like and Ebike. Bulls comes closest with the Evo with Gates belt but no throttle.
Lots of us in our 60s need that boost to start a heavy bike while at a stop light in heavy traffic and the IGH to shift down if in the wrong gear. There's a big market here for geezers that love biking and want something with more personality than a cruiser style ebike. Looks like FLX bikes are getting close with the Bafang Max but no IGH yet.
With a proper pedal assistance it shouldn't take much effort at all to get the bike going. We hear many with this same argument and then they test a bike with a Bosch or similar system and they get it. Maybe I'm a bit biased though since I don't have any bike with throttles in the shop. Several leading shops seem to be moving in a similar direction though. With proper pedal assist you don't need a throttle.
 

romagjack

New Member
I don't use the throttle much on my Emotion Evo City. If I were 20 years younger, I wouldn't even consider a throttle (or ebike) since I was doing century rides on my road bike. 10 years ago, I had to give up my road and mountain bikes, but got a new lease on riding with a recumbent. I still use the recumbent but realize its time for the next bike phase, ebiking. I still have a competitive spirit and like those long rides, but sometimes get to the point where I feel I've earned the right to use the throttle and rest my weary legs for those last few miles home. I use a throttle only as a safety measure for those rare instances outlined in this thread but can see where some riders feel it is unnecessary just as some feel ebikes are the devil. I hope to be posting many years from now about my experiences on a throttled tricycle!
 

Ravi Kempaiah

Well-Known Member
I have a friend who has purchased 10 E-bikes in the last 1 year [ He is a dental surgeon and can afford it]. He owns a Stromer ST2, few different Haibikes with Bosch CX and Yamaha systems, recently got a Brose system BULLS.
May it's his age but he prefers a bike with PAS and throttle. He is getting fitter everyday and feels like he throttle can be useful in certain conditions.

Especially on a mid-drive, shifting is very important and not everyone likes to do that. For many, they are out to enjoy a nice ride and get some exercise. There is reason why manufacturers are trying to introduce systems like Nuvinci, H-sync Nuvinci etc. It makes it easier on the cognitive level and mechanically as well.

Traditional bike shops have this snobbish attitude that E-bikes are cheating and certain extension of that can be seen within E-bike community, PAS vs Throttle!
If you go on MTBR or road biking forums, you will see this ... "if you need a motor, get a moped. Leave my trail alone...MTB is for people who can bike and earn their downhill...etc" kind of attitude..
Whether throttle or hub drive or mid-drive, anything that gets people enjoy a ride is good.
 

Chris Nolte

Well-Known Member
I don't use the throttle much on my Emotion Evo City. If I were 20 years younger, I wouldn't even consider a throttle (or ebike) since I was doing century rides on my road bike. 10 years ago, I had to give up my road and mountain bikes, but got a new lease on riding with a recumbent. I still use the recumbent but realize its time for the next bike phase, ebiking. I still have a competitive spirit and like those long rides, but sometimes get to the point where I feel I've earned the right to use the throttle and rest my weary legs for those last few miles home. I use a throttle only as a safety measure for those rare instances outlined in this thread but can see where some riders feel it is unnecessary just as some feel ebikes are the devil. I hope to be posting many years from now about my experiences on a throttled tricycle!
Have you ridden a bike with a Bosch motor? I ask because the pedal assist is quite a bit more refined and predictable. I wonder if you would feel the same on a bike with that system. I know with the Easy Motion bikes you often have to feather the brake to stop the bike from taking off on you. Easy Motion bikes require a brake cut off switch, whereas the Bosch system does not. The motors sensors are advanced enough that it's not necessary. I don't mean to criticize. I'm really interested in understanding this perspective since it comes up often.
 

RoadWrinkle

Active Member
For what its worth (because they are expensive $$$$), all the handmade Optibike's have a throttled mid-drive design and at high wattage's, so we know its feasible in terms of production and design; and perhaps 'optimal'.
 

RoadWrinkle

Active Member
in our experience most don't miss having a throttle when they get a quality pedal assist bike. It's simplistic to operate as you don't need to think about it, you just ride like you normally would and if you're always pedaling you're always getting some exercise, retaining the principals of a bicycle.
If your fitness level dictates a higher assist level than the PAS systems offer, or if you need to have more control over how hard you peddle at any given time or condition, why take these choices away from the rider? Remember, you can't receive the benefits of any level of exercise of you don't want to get on the bike.
 

Larry Ganz

Active Member
I can see where a throttle could be an advantage to jump off the line from a stop at an intersection, but on a mid-drive that launch is going to depend on what gear you are in - so it still might not be as quick as you wanted, if you have forgotten to downshift before you came to the stop and stayed in high gear.

Nevertheless, even if I forget to shift down from top gear I can pull away and accelerate at a acceptable clip, if I flick it into Turbo 300% assist mode before I take off. It doesn't launch quickly in top gear, but as I build up crank speed in top gear it quickly builds up more power. Having a throttle would have the advantage of reaching full power in top gear immediately. (top gear has 11 teeth on my Trek Powerfly 7)

And once I'm moving even a little bit, then I have the choice at that point to do a quick 3-gear drop for more acceleration in one of the middle gears. Acceleration in one of the middle gears, not low and not high, provides the best results with my mid-drive pedal assist only bike.

If I take off in 1st gear in a high pedal assist mode I can easily out-accelarate my ability to pedal fast, so I max out my cadence at a very low speed and have to shift up almost immediately. But upshifting very quickly while accelerating hard will result in a brief power cut to protect the drivetrain. Having a throttle would not make that process of picking up speed any quicker, if I were to start off in the lowest gear (42 teeth).
 

fxr3

Active Member
It's impossible to make any reasonable argument against a throttle.
"If you need a throttle, get a motorbike". Huh
"If you need a motor, get a motorbike". Yea
"I'm really interested in understanding this perspective"
I think he said he likes longer rides, but feels he deserves a break in the last couple miles and throttle it home.
How bout " if you need 300% help, instead of double, you should get a moped, motorcycle or car".
Some of us admit we are enjoying all the shortcuts, advantages of regular bikes, getting some exercise, taking a car off the road while doing our errands, and having fun. A throttle can only improveou all those things, with no negatives. Period.
Save to assume mfgs tried to stay away from throttles to maintain ability to ride the bike lanes, and take advantage of perks a regular bike enjoys. As my health deteriorates(heart failure), I find myself taking the 20mph st1 with jailbroken 20mph boost button, instead of 28mph st2. And it doesn't take much energy or pedaling to maintain mid 20's on st2, yet for me, sometimes I just don't have the juice. You would have to pay close attention to me riding to recognize I'm throttling more pedaling less though, just because of stupid pride- I guess.
Liability wise- mfg or dealer- arguing pedaling vs.throttle is safer is tough. Pedaling at 75rpm has to reduce your attention more than holding a throttle on.
And motor damage caused by throttling in wrong gear is remote- how many motorcycle or cars do you hear of being damaged by trying to take off in too high of a gear or trying to reach freeway speeds in first gear? Not many.
I dig ebikes, but dealers and forum members(that I personally respect and admire) that argue against a throttle makes no sense to me at all. A throttle just gives rider another option- what could be wrong with that?
 

shivas

New Member
My biktrix stunner has throttle. There are certain stretches of road I ride with no bike lane and miserably rough shoulder. When I get to those areas I check for traffic and use every means at my disposal to get through those stretches as fast as possible to minimize encountering traffic. The throttle helps in those areas.
 

Trail Cruiser

Well-Known Member
I can see where a throttle could be an advantage to jump off the line from a stop at an intersection, but on a mid-drive that launch is going to depend on what gear you are in - so it still might not be as quick as you wanted, if you have forgotten to downshift before you came to the stop and stayed in high gear.
From my experience, it is not necessarily the case. I ride three 28 mph ebikes (all with throttles), one hub drive and 2 mid drives. The hub motor is always geared in top gear so the acceleration from a dead stop is always mild (maybe moderate when you full throttle it). It could be a different story if you have a 20 mph hub drive since it is geared lower (and also better climber).

That is also similar in a mid drive if you forgot to downshift, it feels like a 28 mph hub drive on acceleration from a dead stop. However if you downshifted in a mid drive then the pick up from a stop is really strong. Mind you, you only need to downshift 1 or 2 gears in a mid drive before coming into a full stop.

It's the existing laws that paint a bad image to the throttle. Come on! Ebikes are not dirt bikes that can do tire burns on acceleration. For God's sake, these are half horsepower minimalistic machines (0.5 hp) with heavy batteries! Having a throttle can be a life saver on emergency evasive maneuvers. It is also very handy on technical maneuvers when highly calibrated power application is needed while your crank is not on the optimal position (vertical position).
 
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Larry Ganz

Active Member
From my experience, it is not necessarily the case. I ride three 28 mph ebikes (all with throttles), one hub drive and 2 mid drives. The hub motor is always geared in top gear so the acceleration from a dead stop is always mild (maybe moderate when you full throttle it). It could be a different story if you have a 20 mph hub drive since it is geared lower (and also better climber).

That is also similar in a mid drive if you forgot to downshift, it feels like a 28 mph hub drive on acceleration from a dead stop. However if you downshifted in a mid drive then the pick up from a stop is really strong. Mind you, you only need to downshift 1 or 2 gears in a mid drive before coming into a full stop....

I believe I said the same thing as you - I posited that a throttle in my mid-drive, for starting from a stop in high gear vs dropping three gears (which improves things noticeably), would be helpful - just not when starting out in 1st gear because the motor can already outrun my ability to pedal fast and the power drops out with each upshift to protect the drivetrain.
 

romagjack

New Member
Lots of good comments on all sides of the debate. I like to ride the Greenway near my house where there are multiple "switchbacks", all very hilly and with very tight turns to get on and off. Without a throttle that can be used at slow speeds, I would have to walk my 55# bike up and down these hills. Since I don't have the balance and coordination of my youth, churning the pedals while navigating the uphill tight turns only happens in my dreams. I have viewed all of Court's great videos and still come up short on my dream bike. The technology is there and I hope to see some offerings soon:
  • Mid- drive with throttle to override all gears, Must have torque sensing
  • IGH, Nuvinci or Shimano, or Rohloff (belt drive preferred)
  • Prefer dual suspension that allows for upright riding position, (Body float, Thudbuster ok if just front suspension)
  • Must be stealthy and not look like an ebike (Like Bulls or Easy Motion bikes)
Lots of bikes come close. I was hopeful the newer Bafang Max based bikes offer torque sensing and throttle, but it appears they added torque sensing but dropped the throttle.
 

Joe Remi

Active Member
I believe I said earlier in this thread that I didn't think a throttle was necessary on a mid-drive. Then I bought a Bafang BBS02-kitted folding bike with throttle. It's quite handy, especially when you need to move fast in a dicey situation. Wrong, I was. I like it.
 

jazz

Well-Known Member
There are plenty of reasons of good reasons to have a throttle on an ebike. a couple of examples: I use my BBSHD ebike on single track trails and generally run it on zero PAS to get the full workout of a 50lb ebike. I use the throttle for a quick few seconds of boost when doing intense trail riding or to jump start up an incline. Sometimes you feel tired and just want to coast back after a good hard ride. I usually reward myself with mostly throttle on my return trip out of the hills. I usually use a bit of throttle when starting out from a dead stop. Throttles + peddling are a good way to get through traffic intersections. They can be handy to have if you need to avoid a potential dangerous situation, a throttle can come in handy especially if you have the power behind it.
 

negativestraw

New Member
So, from reading this thread it seems like there are relatively few middrives with throttles. I was thinking about the izip protour, but the range is giving me pause. Someone mentioned that bosch doesn't like throttles at all. What about something like the Giant Quick-E+ with SyncDrive by Yamaha? Would the controller on one of these allow an aftermarket thumb throttle to be added?
 

Joe Remi

Active Member
So, from reading this thread it seems like there are relatively few middrives with throttles. I was thinking about the izip protour, but the range is giving me pause. Someone mentioned that bosch doesn't like throttles at all. What about something like the Giant Quick-E+ with SyncDrive by Yamaha? Would the controller on one of these allow an aftermarket thumb throttle to be added?

Sort of, maybe, but it's not a plug-and-play operation. You're best bet, IMHO, if you don't want to build a bike is to look for a Bafang mid-drive-with-throttle model like the Biktrix Monte 1000, or a bike put together by Luna Cycles. I have a BBS02 folding bike from Luna, and it's pretty sweet.
 

tomjasz

Well-Known Member
There are plenty of reasons of good reasons to have a throttle on an ebike. a couple of examples: I use my BBSHD ebike on single track trails and generally run it on zero PAS to get the full workout of a 50lb ebike. I use the throttle for a quick few seconds of boost when doing intense trail riding or to jump start up an incline. Sometimes you feel tired and just want to coast back after a good hard ride. I usually reward myself with mostly throttle on my return trip out of the hills. I usually use a bit of throttle when starting out from a dead stop. Throttles + peddling are a good way to get through traffic intersections. They can be handy to have if you need to avoid a potential dangerous situation, a throttle can come in handy especially if you have the power behind it.
Sometimes it's the only way home....VBG Especially after a long or grueling ride. And at my age, that can happen every day.