New Reflexes...

Thom473

Member
OK, been riding around town now that rain is temporarily abated. Radmini is handling everything I throw at it doing well on hills and in the flat. Went 10 miles today (I know, not a lot but I'm still learning--used up 2 bars on the battery in the ride). The only trouble I had was in close traffic where cars or pedestrians were likely to cross in front of me and I have to assume they don't see me. What's awkward is my bicycle reflexes would be to stay on the wheels but pedal slowly to keep balance...can't do that in PAS 3 or higher or you'll speed up and hit whatever you nearly stopped to avoid. I've been frantically down PAS'ing (is that a new word?) but even that wasn't enough for one stop--don't worry, I didn't hit anything, just stopped completely and stood up.

Anyway, I thought I'd relate my experience and ask more experience ebikers what is the best way to handle the occasional need to slow/near stop but keep balanced without inadvertently enabling the PAS acceleration.
 

mrgold35

Well-Known Member
I don't know how different the radmini ride compares to the radrover with the taller tires. I added a thumb throttle to make it easier to regulate my speed to creep up to intersections without surging forward in PAS 4-5. It also takes me about 3/4 turn of the pedal before the hub motor kicks in and I just sometime just do a 1/4 -1/2 turn, back pedal, and 1/4-1/2 turn just to move forward under my own power to keep my balance while creeping up. I never have a need to lower my PAS level when coming to a stop when commuting. The most I do is lower my gears to assist in acceleration to my cruising speed from slowing down or from a stop.

(Link Removed - No Longer Exists)
 

Scott Briggs

New Member
Hi Thom473, what I do is just lightly pull on the brake to disengage the PAS but not enough to actually engage the brake. That allows me to keep pedaling under my own power for a short time. Of course you can drop the PAS to 0 and accomplish the same thing but I find that awkward. Good luck!
 

_AleX_

New Member
All of this seems a bit awkward to be honest. Especially compared to how one would normally ride a bicycle as described above. I'm still learning about e-bikes. Went to a bike shop recently to check out a few, I'll probably do some test rides in summer.

Is this with cadence sensing PAS? From what I understand that is the most "crude" way of delivering PAS. Like a roundabout way of controlling a throttle, relating crank rotations to added power.

Out of curiosity, is the behaviour similar with torque sensing PAS? Or does it feel more natural like riding a normal bicycle?

After my research so far, I'm definitely leaning the European way. Torque sensing PAS, no throttle. I want my future e-bike to be a normal bike first in every way possible, only adding some power to my own human power. I definitely don't want the "scooter" sensation that seems to be very popular with all the throttle equipped, cadence sensing PAS e-bikes in the USA. Top speed has zero importance, 25-30 kph...

That said, with motorcycles it is a very common trick to apply some light rear brake to stabilise your bike at slow speeds. So if that's the trick to cut out the assist and pedal on your own while slowing down or "freewheeling", I think that should be fine. The first few millimetres of lever travel will hardly apply any braking (no unnecessary brake usage), but will cut the circuitry.
 

vincent

Well-Known Member
From my understanding yes you are correct, torque gives you a more normal bicycle feel

But I own 5 cadence bikes and it all depends on how the controller is programmed, have some that are very controlled and smooth - and I have one that the PAS is way too fast and I only use throttle on that bike

not sure why there are so many cadence sensing bikes with lousy programming...
But it definitely can be done where it's pretty decent


That being said I would probably have all torque sensing bikes if they were available with throttle -- not sure that it would really matter that much to me but everyone keeps saying they are better LOL


I rode a few of the bafang Max torque sensing bikes at inter-bike and some I really liked but a few guess the programming was turned up or weird and they were very surgy/ fast right off the line in level one ....
 

mrgold35

Well-Known Member
The tech support updated the firmware for the Radrover recently. I had a fault with my controller and Rad replaced it with the updated firmware. I like it a lot better because the update limits the amount of watts per PAS to:
PAS 1: 50W
PAS 2: 150W
PAS 3: 350W
PAS 4: 500W
PAS 5: 750W

My old controller firmware would try and apply sometimes too much power when doing low speed maneuvers. The new firmware limits power at the lower PAS levels to reduce that "surge" of power like before. Makes for a much smoother ride without hearing/feeling the hub motor kicking on/off/on at max watts when your speed drop 1 mph. I can cruise at PAS 2-3 at 16 mph when it took PAS 4 for the same speed.

I imagine the firmware is the same for the radrover and radmini? I think it only cost $25+shipping to update the firmware. That might make it easier to negotiate the intersections.
 
Last edited:

Thom473

Member
Current radmini PAS levels are slightly different on my bike. PAS 1 is less than 50 since display never shows anything, PAS 2 I've seen 175; then there is a big jump PAS 3 is 400+, 4 to 550+ and 5 to 750--at least that's what I'm seeing, I don't know how precisely the firmware is programmed nor how much QC goes into the physical components. Since I ride in PAS 3 or 4 usually, slowing down (brake for traffic) ends up with me balancing but can't apply pedals to move slow since there is no consistency to when the motor jumps in (sometimes half a turn, sometimes 2-3 turns (which is understandable when you look and see that it is a simple magnetic sensor with just a few button magnets mounted in the sprocket to activate (wonder what happens if you pedal backwards?). Which is why I've been down PAS'ing in traffic--the throttle is more consistent, but there's only a half turn from zero to full. Next time I'll try Scott's method and just apply brakes to disengage motor to see if that works better. I'm sure I'll figure out something I'm comfortable with, but I do have to caution folks who want to try my bike (and I meet lots of them!) that when they pedal, the motor kicks in abruptly and with considerable power.
 

vincent

Well-Known Member
There seems to be a pretty big difference in the throttle on the mini and the rover

The rover has a nice smooth ramp up, I can hold it at a slow speed very easily
the throttle on the mini is much more abrupt and fast, harder to hold it at any kind of slow speed

think i have third generation controllers on my mini, the rover has the same controller but the throttle is not as smooth and controlled on the mini

I actually tried the new style of controller on my mini trying to improve the throttle response and did not like it at all

For whatever reason it seemed like the new controller was either wide-open or off using throttle

Since I normally ride in level one or two my controllers do well for me
 

Thom473

Member
not sure why there are so many cadence sensing bikes with lousy programming...
But it definitely can be done where it's pretty decent
...

I'm not sure it is lousy programming alone so much as cheap decisions on hardware. On my radmini there are only 6 button magnets to activate the magnetic switch that activates the assist. The difference in gauss in button magnets can be large (and it is also possible to put them in upside down so they wouldn't activate the switch at all). Something that would be more consistent in activating the assist could have been done with little extra cost--larger magnets and fewer of them, for example.
 

walawn

Active Member
@Thom473 I agree completely with you. Quoting my post from another topic:

"@mrgold35 If you in a crash bad enough that you bend the bars you'll probably be in the hospital or worse. I agree that it would be cheaper to buy two bolts versus another handlebar. I'm talking about minor crashes where the bolts break and there is no damage to the bars. That way when you take a spill your bike can still be ridden home. From my extensive research, and working hands-on with the Radrover, all of the non-ebike parts are low quality and prone to breakage or failure. They are just enough to make the bike work but have no durability or reliability. I had parts break 100 ft. from my back door headed out on my first ride. All of the money is put into the motor, controller, battery, wheels, and LCD. I've ended up upgrading almost every non-ebike component of my Radrover from brakes to shifting to tubes to tires and so much more."

You can see how I feel about the quality/durability of the stock components on our Radrovers. Keep in mind that this is a budget, pre-built bike in the $1,500 range (+$174 shipping) with some impressive specs of the ebike components. Maybe future generations of the Radrover will have a better cadence sensor or torque sensing, but most likely at a higher cost unless manufacturing costs come down for these components. I still want electronic, automatic shifting on my bike btw, but the cost is too prohibitive at the moment. :)
 

Thom473

Member
I suppose it is a personal preference issue, but a cadence sensor ought not be an on-off switch IMHO; but that's what the controller does on the radmini. When the magnetic switch gets activated, power is applied to the hub motor based on PAS level selected and doesn't matter how fast or slow you pedal. But that in essence is what makes the bike hard to use in traffic if you have it in PAS 3 or more. Oh, well, I'll get used to it.
 

vincent

Well-Known Member
i agree pas3 and up are too fast

today i was riding on a pretty busy bike/pedestrian path and felt like 9-10mph would have been good
both my mini and rover have the controller that uses speed and watts

level 1 cuts out at 5-6mph
level 2 cuts out at 8
and stupid level 3 cuts out at 14
ridiculous jump, 6 miles higher and it means i cannot use level 3 much at all unless on a big bike path with not many people or the road

my other problem with level 3 is i can hardly keep any pressure on the pedals even in 7th gear- at least in the flats where i ride a lot

is it possible to put more gears on this thing?

even so i still love this bike!
 

Thom473

Member
I also am exhilarated by my radmini. Took it to the grocery for the first time today. Folded it and locked it to a bike rack while I shopped. Had to go around a huge hill but still had hills to go up and down. About a 10 mile ride in total. In traffic with pedestrians, I'm only comfortable with PAS 1 or 2. But on the street with no worries, PAS 4 or 5...but like you, I'd prefer more gears since in PAS 3 I can barely keep any pressure on the pedals, but in 4 or 5 I might as well just use the throttle and instead of fooling myself.
 

vincent

Well-Known Member
seems like one time on the loop in a isolated area with no other riders/pedestrians i used level 4 on the rover for a little bit
pretty sure the mini has only gone as high as 3

and neither have ever seen level 5 lol

but i dont ride fast at all

agree you might as well use throttle if in the higher levels, but keep thinking people with big hills must use those???...

i really do wish there were more gears, does anyone know if this is possible?
 

Thom473

Member
I do have to help the motor on big hills in PAS level 4 (and downshift the gearing to 1 or 2). Radrover discourages you from using the higher power on hills, though since the controller will try to give you the requested watts by pushing large amounts of current to the motor and that'll heat everything up if you do it for very long. That's why the owners manual tells you to limit motor watts to 500 which would be PAS3 on the mini. But I'm old and fat and the hills are short so I do what I can do--it's winter so I think I'm OK...by summer I should know better routes to avoid these slopes to get where I'm going.

I don't know if you could add a new sprocket and derailleur-you might check with your bike shop.
 

Lost

Active Member
The tech support updated the firmware for the Radrover recently. I had a fault with my controller and Rad replaced it with the updated firmware. I like it a lot better because the update limits the amount of watts per PAS to:
PAS 1: 50W
PAS 2: 150W
PAS 3: 350W
PAS 4: 500W
PAS 5: 750W

My old controller firmware would try and apply sometimes too much power when doing low speed maneuvers. The new firmware limits power at the lower PAS levels to reduce that "surge" of power like before. Makes for a much smoother ride without hearing/feeling the hub motor kicking on/off/on at max watts when your speed drop 1 mph. I can cruise at PAS 2-3 at 16 mph when it took PAS 4 for the same speed.

I imagine the firmware is the same for the radrover and radmini? I think it only cost $25+shipping to update the firmware. That might make it easier to negotiate the intersections.

There seems to be a speed lock out though on mine anyway. I can not go more than a snails pace on PAS 1 without it going to zero assist. Is this what you are seeing?
 

Lost

Active Member
i agree pas3 and up are too fast

today i was riding on a pretty busy bike/pedestrian path and felt like 9-10mph would have been good
both my mini and rover have the controller that uses speed and watts

level 1 cuts out at 5-6mph
level 2 cuts out at 8
and stupid level 3 cuts out at 14
ridiculous jump, 6 miles higher and it means i cannot use level 3 much at all unless on a big bike path with not many people or the road

my other problem with level 3 is i can hardly keep any pressure on the pedals even in 7th gear- at least in the flats where i ride a lot

is it possible to put more gears on this thing?

even so i still love this bike!

See, I thought the new firmware would eliminate the speed limit, and only just give the progressive power steps. But I must have mis -interpreted that as mine just got delivered so I would think have the latest firmware.
 

Lost

Active Member
The tech support updated the firmware for the Radrover recently. I had a fault with my controller and Rad replaced it with the updated firmware. I like it a lot better because the update limits the amount of watts per PAS to:
PAS 1: 50W
PAS 2: 150W
PAS 3: 350W
PAS 4: 500W
PAS 5: 750W

My old controller firmware would try and apply sometimes too much power when doing low speed maneuvers. The new firmware limits power at the lower PAS levels to reduce that "surge" of power like before. Makes for a much smoother ride without hearing/feeling the hub motor kicking on/off/on at max watts when your speed drop 1 mph. I can cruise at PAS 2-3 at 16 mph when it took PAS 4 for the same speed.

I imagine the firmware is the same for the radrover and radmini? I think it only cost $25+shipping to update the firmware. That might make it easier to negotiate the intersections.

It would be cool if they could just sell us the cable and a software tool that would let us do our own.
 

BVC

Active Member
I got more ride time on the new controller...


...it's not bad. It doesn't have that V8 instant power/tq feel to it. It feels like an AWD turbo V6.