ShareRoller V3, expansively described & illustrated here...

Jack Tyler

Active Member
A lot has happened with the ShareRoller prototype product since Court did his SR review with SR founder, Jeff Guida.

SR's V3 (third prototype) version has come a long way from the 'blue box' that Court demo'd and you can find much detail on the product, its manufacturing & delivery schedule and its expanded feature set at their ShareRoller Indiegogo page. (As one example of the product maturity, the throttle assembly now connects by Bluetooth to the drive unit. Very clever). The campaign has surpassed its goal as I write this, which is an encouraging sign. Early adopters are offered a 40% discount on a SR unit, as well.

There's lots offered by this approach, tho' of course it isn't optimum for all ebike uses. I found I had a few questions after reading the campaign webpage, posted them to Jeff and got a reply within a few hours. (Jeff apparently does not sleep...) Here are his follow-on comments, in case the scratch an itch someone else has.

"V3 is certainly quite different from the original V1. Every single element of the product has been redesigned and improved significantly for the V3, and it's world's better than the V1. To answer your specific questions:

- RainLock is indeed the pressure adjuster for wet conditions, however it's much more advanced than what we had in the V1. There are four levels of adjustment to it, and both initial engagement pressure and final engagement pressure are controlled with one easy-to-adjust dial. Our original V1 had just the top-mount spring piston that enabled pressure adjustment only on bike share bikes. The V3 has that original top-mount piston for bike share use plus the new RainLock selector system for other bikes and scooters.

- The throttle for the V3 is now wireless, and this replaces the wired throttle of V1 and V2. The V2 had in fact advanced to a spring-loaded retraction mechanism for the throttle cable, which was a big improvement over the V1, but we still found having a cable at all to be a bit of a hassle, hence we made the decision to move to a fully wireless throttle for V3, which is standard for all V3s.

- The throttle button throw range is exactly 1/2 inch, so you have a good eye! The way the throttle is designed, you rest your thumb against the throttle module housing, and then only rotate your thumb into or out of the throttle to adjust power. That way your thumb is firmly braced against the non-moving part, to absorb any shocks or bumps, while the action of rotating your thumb slightly inward or outward is easily controlled. It works pretty well after just a bit of practice. Also, don't forget that we have both the TailWind cruise control throttle mode and the optional Pedelec sensor control mode. In TailWind, you only need to touch the throttle to turn it on, adjust the level, or pause/resume it. Otherwise the motor is running automatically and you don't have to worry about continually holding a throttle. And of course in Pedlec mode there's even less throttle interaction, as stop/start is controlled by your pedal movement, and only the throttle select button is used to change between Pedelec modes (Low, Med, High). I hope that all makes sense!

- Motor noise will never go away completely with these types of motors - so it won't ever be fully silent like some direct-drive hub motor systems. However, we've minimized it quite a bit with our latest motor designs, and it's barely audible under low-power cruising. It's only when you're using full power - i.e. during hard acceleration or high speed into a headwind - that it gets louder. Frankly, one of the biggest safety complaints pedestrians make about e-bikes is that they move quite fast and can't be heard - this is why electric cars often have artificial safety awareness noises built in. So in one sense, having an e-bike system that is somewhat audible does help address the safety concerns many have about e-bikes.

I hope that answers your question. Thanks for the interest in our product, and please let me know if anything else comes to mind!

Best,
Jeff"

Jack
 

Nirmala

Active Member
That is all good news. I have ordered a standard size ShareRoller and will definitely report here on my experience with it. At first, I intend to use it as a booster on my already electric Magnum Ui5 as we have some big hills here in Northern Arizona. But I also may use it on other bikes as time goes by. I figure I can get a very light road bike and add this to it and end up with an ebike that weighs about 30 pounds or less!

They have extended the preorder pricing until Dec.2nd, so you can still take a chance and order one for less than the retail price here: http://igg.me/at/shareroller/x/12713097
 

Nirmala

Active Member
Some of this info is available elsewhere on these forums, but I wanted to share some of the technical info that Jeff has shared recently to give a sense of how thorough he is being in the development of this device. I mentioned how my Magnum will very occasionally overheat on steeper or longer hills and he shared the following about the ShareRoller's approach to motor heating:

"Certainly hills are the challenge of any e-bike - constant full power output, typically at an RPM that is below optimal efficiency, generates a lot of heat. We initially encountered a lot of heat-related challenges, but we've been able to achieve tremendous improvements, both with our dual-fan push-pull air cooling system as well as our temp-linked variable power reduction. Hub motors often have quite limited airflow due to their sealed design which is why they can build up heat quickly. And the On/Off temp-triggered shutoffs common with most systems are really sub-optimal. It's a far better approach to gradually ratchet back power levels, and thus heat generation, as the motor temp increases. This usually gets you to a normalized level where heat generated = heat dissipated, avoiding the need to ever shut down the motor entirely.

We've aso been able to get higher and higher efficiency motors with our collaborations with three different motor manufacturers, and this has helped cut heat generation a lot. Now on the hills of NYC (mostly bridge climbs), heat is a non-issue on a bike - it doesn't even get warm. Even on a scooter, where the rider is contributing zero power and the rolling resistance is much higher, heat is still kept in check. I'm curious to see how it will perform on longer, steeper climbs, but I think it will do just fine, especially if the rider is pedaling some."


And in response to a question on the comments on Indiegogo about the Tailwind function which is a kind of cruise control and whether it would be a problem when braking he shared the following:

"Since TailWind was designed to work as simply as possible - without any sensors added to your bike, it doesn't have a linkage to your brakes. And while it's easy to 'pause' TailWind with a single button when you want to slow, you won't have problems stopping if you forget, as the max TailWind power is rather low (~150W). It will never push you forward any stronger than an actual tailwind would, so you'll always be able to brake safely - and it shuts off automatically once you slow below 8mph.

If you prefer more complete integration, our Pedelec mode is for those don't mind installing sensors on their bikes - we already have a pedelec sensor option that plugs into the ShareRoller to enable control of motor power via pedal movement. The motor starts only when you pedal (at Low, Med, or High assist level) and stops automatically when you stop pedaling. This allows you to ride throttle-free if you prefer.

And we're exploring adding brake-cutoff sensor input as well, although this will require replacing your brake levers with sensored brake levers, or installing a sensor inline with your brake cables or levers. Brake cutoffs are generally not required as long as the pedal sensors stop the motor quickly once you stop pedaling (which ours does), so it's somewhat overkill, but we're going to try to incorporate this as a secondary option for those that really want it."


I find their level of thoroughness impressive, and I am very hopeful that the final product will be effective and useful. They have extended the preorder pricing until Dec.2nd, so you can still get this unit at a discount from the retail price here: http://igg.me/at/shareroller/x/12713097
 
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Jack Tyler

Active Member
Here's an update as of today about a second round of the Shareroller Indiegogo campaign:

"Dear ShareRoller follower:
As you likely know, we completed our successful Indiegogo campaign on Dec 4, 2015, raising over $73,000 to finance production of the new ShareRoller V3. Production is now underway and we will begin shipping ShareRoller V3 this Spring.

However, for anyone who missed our Indiegogo campaign, we have some exciting news to announce:
Due to overwhelming demand, we have decided to re-open our Indiegogo campaign for another round of discounted Pre-Orders for a limited time only.
Please visit our Indiegogo page below for more info. We won't be offering these discounts for more than a few weeks, so please don't miss out on your last chance to save 30% off Retail prices by pre-ordering.

ShareRoller Indiegogo Campaign
Thanks for your interest!
-The ShareRoller Team "
 

sukeiasa

Member
very interested in the SR concept, but missed the indiegogo campaign... if there's another round i would definitely like to participate, or just have to wait until the production....

one of the most attractive aspect of this product is integration with sharebike programs.... would local programs have to invest in hardware to make the bikes SR-able? or is there something in SR's design that would just make it clip and go?
 

Nirmala

Active Member
Some of the bikeshare programs use a mounting plate identical to the one the shareroller uses to lock the bikes. In particular, it is the Bixi company bikes that work. So for those particular bikeshare bikes, the shareroller would just clip on and you would be good to go. Here is a Wikipedia page with a list of the bikeshare programs that use these bikes:
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bixi_(company)


And here is more info from the Shreroller indiegogo page:

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Nirmala

Active Member
Here is the latest from Jeff Guida at ShareRoller:

Hello ShareRoller Indiegogo backer:

First off, our apologies for the long quiet period - our team has been extremely busy making improvements to the product and gearing up for production.

To that end, we have some very exciting news to announce. We've been listening to your feedback since the campaign first began, and two major wishes were common: Is there a way to reduce the weight and size of ShareRoller over the front wheel, or to mount it over the rear wheel? And, is it possible for ShareRoller to work in varying surface and weather conditions without any adjustments needed from the user?

And incredibly, our engineers have achieved two major breakthroughs in the past few months that should satisfy both of those desires. Even better, we've decided to incorporate these transformative improvements into the ShareRoller V3 launch, at no extra charge to you:

1) Automatic Motorized Traction Control: Permanently solves the challenge of varying friction levels due to dust, dirt, water, and tire pressure. Optimizes efficiency at all times, while permanently preventing slippage, in any weather conditions. And all without any manual adjustments needed from the rider!

2) Ultra-Versatile Dual-Mode Mounting: Allows ShareRoller to be used as a one-piece device mounted entirely over the front wheel (as shown in our IGG campaign) OR as a two-piece unit, with the weight and bulk of the batteries mounted on the bike downtube or scooter upright. (And the two-piece use also enables rear-wheel mounting). One device, Two ways to install. This gives you the best of both worlds: super-convenient all-in-one usage for bike share use or casual riding AND optimum-balance, dual-point mounting for minimizing the weight and bulk over the wheel, especially beneficial for off-road riding and scooter use. Either way, ShareRoller can still be installed or removed in seconds, and easily carried with you when needed.

We realize you'd love to see exactly how all this looks and functions, but unfortunately our patent attorneys won't let us show any details until a later date. But rest assured that the modified design is even better in every respect than what you were expecting.

We believe that these two additions to the product make ShareRoller by far the most versatile and best performing friction drive system ever created. There's nothing else like it anywhere. And we hope you share our excitement in what these improvements will do to your ShareRoller experience!

What's the downside? Well, as you might imagine, incorporating these significant improvements required a ton of engineering work and process revisions (not to mention cost!). As a result, it's going to extend our production timeline by a few months and we now expect to deliver ShareRoller this August. We know you've been eagerly anticipating your ShareRoller delivery, and that Summer is rapidly approaching, and we're very sorry that you're going to have to wait a bit longer than expected. But we fully believe that these transformational improvements will be well worth the wait!

Thanks for your continued support and enthusiasm.

Jeff Guida & The ShareRoller Team

.......so some good news regarding the new mounting options and the automatic traction control, but some bad news: delivery delayed until August. At least the delivery delay is in service to real improvements to the product. I am especially glad about the new option to mount the batteries elsewhere on the bike as instead of a typical upright bike, I am going to try this on a recumbent that I just picked up on Craigslist. It has a steep fork angle and the usual mounting of the ShareRoller might have affected steering adversely. Here is the bike I will be trying the ShareRoller out on (in addition to adding it to my Magnum Ui5 to create an all wheel drive ebike):

00G0G_6Q5aRbw6hzG_600x450.jpg
 

Nirmala

Active Member
all wheel drive? you should add a mid drive motor as well to make it front, back, and middle drive~
Good idea! Well...technically mid-drive is also rear wheel drive. But maybe I could get a recumbent tricycle with a motor on all three wheels :)

Seriously though, the ShareRoller weighs about as much as a second battery, so adding it to the Magnum will give me more power and more range without too much extra weight.
 

Nirmala

Active Member
I just heard from Jeff Guida, and he reported that the new batteries with the current design have upgraded cells, so the capacity is 20% more on the standard battery and 12% more on the Ultra battery than what is listed on the Indiegogo page. So probably around 265 watt-hour for the standard and 450 watt-hour for the ultra. These new batteries can either be mounted on the motor/drive wheel unit or they can be mounted separately on the frame of the bike. They also have worked out a seat post mount which will allow you to mount the ShareRoller on the rear wheel as long as you do not have fenders.

I can hardly wait to try mine out.
 

Gkaras

New Member
I saw a shareroller Twitter feed from June indicating an August update and sales to begin. Anyone heard anything?
 

Nirmala

Active Member
I posted this on July 8th on another thread about the ShareRoller:

Just got the following message from Jeff at ShareRoller. Unfortunately, they are hitting some more snags and are now talking about delivery in November. Hopefully, all of these later improvements will have been worth the wait.

"Hello ShareRoller Indiegogo backer:

We hope everyone is enjoying their summer so far, and we're sorry we haven't been able to make ShareRoller part of that enjoyment yet. But rest assured that we're working around the clock to make sure we deliver a product that will blow away all of your expectations.

Unfortunately, we've encountered some unexpected challenges that are slowing our progress. We've had to move to a new PCB design firm as our previous supplier was not up to our standards - however our new partner has amazed us with their capabilities, and we are well on our way to having the ultimate ShareRoller PCB. This is critical, as it's truly the heart and soul of the device, integrating not only our custom BLDC motor controller, but also our Automatic Motorized Traction Control, wireless throttle, and Bluetooth smartphone integration.

As a result of this switch though, we've lost a few months of work. The good news is that we're more than adequately funded to absorb this; the bad news is we can't make up the lost time. So we're now looking at deliveries shifting three months out to November. I can't tell you how disappointed we are to have to keep you waiting this much longer, and we realize this must be an enormous letdown for you all.

BUT unlike many crowdfundings we've seen, we don't believe it's fair to ask our backers to wait any longer without offering something in return. While our first delay was offset by the amazing new functionality we're adding (Automatic Motorized Traction Control and Dual-Mode Mounting), we're going to offer you more on account of this second delay: free stuff!

Here's what we're going to do: for every ShareRoller device you have ordered, we will give you a $110 credit usable towards additional battery packs, battery pack upgrades, mounts, PAS sensors, and other accessories (please note that we cannot refund original contributions). We hope that amount helps to offset the disappointment of the delay - believe me, we'd much rather go back in time and deliver your ShareRollers before summer ends, but that's a bit beyond our capabilities…
 

Nirmala

Active Member
Another update from ShareRoller and unfortunately another delay. But they are continually improving the design. Here is the update:


Hello ShareRoller Indiegogo backer:

First off, please accept our apologies if we haven't had a chance to respond to your individual emails. The team has been extremely busy putting our final production prototypes through rigorous testing, and we haven't had time to attend to our Inbox.

The testing so far has verified that the new ShareRoller V4 (SRV4) design offers a giant leap in performance and is an absolute joy to ride. The dual-mode mounting transforms the handling by minimizing weight over the wheel, and makes a big difference over rough roads and on scooters. And the new front/rear-wheel mounting versatility has allowed us to easily install ShareRoller on pretty much any bike we've tried.

Not only that, but the automated traction control system is performing terrifically, and the difference in the riding experience is absolutely incredible. There's no longer any need to manually adjust the pressure of the drive motor on the tire - everything is sensor-controlled and automatic, ensuring optimum performance all the time, even in wet conditions. And there's ZERO drag when you're not using the motor, which means your bike feels just like a regular bike when you want to ride without assist.

However, not all is going according to plan: last year we were advised by our production consultants that the odds of EVERY component meeting specifications on the first production prototypes are very low, and it turns out they were right. Specifically, our first samples of the new Drive Motor have not delivered the performance that we know is achievable, so we've revised the design and have a new prototype now being built for testing. We're sparing no expense here - the new Drive Motor will contain the absolute highest grade of magnets commercially available and the tightest production tolerances in the industry, which is exactly what's required for the ultra high performance we want. This is the heart and soul of ShareRoller, and we want to be sure it is absolutely awesome.

As a result, our planned November production target will slip. However, we do expect to get production started before the end of December, which means shipments can begin in January. We've got a few other key milestones to pass before then, including final certifications (UL, CE, and UN38.3) and long-term durability testing, but we will be working on these while awaiting the new Drive Motors.

Our apologies again for the continued delays, but we're getting very close to being able to deliver a game-changing new SRV4 to all of our backers, and we promise it will be worth the wait. Also, we will do our best to increase the frequency and detail of our Updates as we move through the next few months, since we know everyone wants as much info as possible.

Thanks again for your continued support, enthusiasm, and patience.
Jeff Guida & The ShareRoller Team
 

Nirmala

Active Member
Another update today from Jeff at ShareRoller. It sounds like they have been incredibly busy and have added tons of new features and upgrades to the design. Unfortunately, the ship date is now pushed back to mid-March. Here is the detailed report he sent in an email:

Hello ShareRoller Indiegogo backer:

We hope everyone has enjoyed a wonderful Holiday Season. We have lots of info to cover in this Update so we've broken it into three sections:

1) PRODUCTION & SHIPPING UPDATE

2) NEW SRV4 DESIGN REVEAL

3) NEW DETAILS ON FEATURESET


1) PRODUCTION & SHIPPING UPDATE

When we last wrote (our October Update), we had hoped to receive all production components by the end of December so that we could begin production and start shipping in January. Unfortunately, during this last round of prototype testing we discovered several minor changes were still needed:

a) The wireless architecture for the throttle and phone app required a minor modification to eliminate any drop-out risk

b) The physical design of the wireless throttle needed another redesign iteration - we still weren't happy with the layout of the controls, buttons, and LEDs

c) The waterproof screw-barrel connectors for the battery pack and PAS sensor proved to be too time-consuming to attach and remove, so we needed to source specialty magnetic connectors and redesign the housing to fit

d) The traction control motor needed a secondary seal to better prevent water intrusion

e) The battery pack needed additional minor changes to qualify for UN38.3 certification, which is required in order to ship any battery packs

These are all small tweaks, but still require another prototype-verify loop before we can start manufacturing in volume (otherwise we run the risk of making hundreds of components that need to be modified or scrapped). It seems nothing ever works as planned the first time, nor frequently the second time either...

We've already completed the design changes above and are now waiting on our suppliers for the next prototype sample parts. Once we verify those, we can place volume orders which would enable us to begin assembly 4 weeks afterwards. That would shift our production target out about six weeks, from early January to late February, were it not for the fact that the Chinese New Year Holiday causes many of our suppliers to shut down for two weeks at the end of January (groan). So that means it will be early-mid March before we'll have production units ready to ship.

We realize this is enormously frustrating, and we feel absolutely terrible that it's now been one year since we completed our Indiegogo campaign, and we still aren't ready to ship - getting the new SRV4 into production is just taking MUCH longer than we ever anticipated. While we're not alone here - many crowdfundings have taken 12-24 months to deliver products - we never thought we'd encounter the same unexpected delays, and we're very sorry that you're forced to wait far longer than you planned.

2) NEW SRV4 DESIGN REVEAL

We know we promised a 'full reveal' this month, but our patent attorney wants to file one more patent before we show _everything_ publicly. So in the meantime, we've attached an image of the new SRV4 design that was shown to investors previously (it's been 'polished' since then), so at least you have an idea of what we're making; we hope you like it! As we've said before, we're incredibly excited about this new form factor, since it gives the ability to better distribute the weight and bulk on a bike or scooter frame, while still retaining the ability to be installed or removed in seconds, and the 'all-in-one' installation method that is so critical for bike share use. Plus, it allows rear wheel bike mounting, which many of you have asked for (quick-release seatpost mount anyone?), and enables popular folding bikes like the Brompton to be folded completely without removing the ShareRoller. All huge improvements that thoroughly transform the product.



3) NEW DETAILS ON FEATURESET

To help you better understand why this is all taking so long and why it will be worth the wait, we're going to provide never-before released detail below on the main components of the new SRV4, and the challenges inherent in making such a groundbreaking new device. Almost every component of the new SRV4 is custom vs off-the-shelf, including several technological industry firsts. And this is why it's taking so long to get it into production. We probably could have delivered a much less innovative device sooner, but hopefully the info below will help you understand why we truly believe that these game-changing improvements will be worth the extended wait in the end.

- Variable Force Traction Control System (VFTCS): We've already filed the patents on this, so we can tell you that the new SRV4 design includes a secondary motor drive to control the pivot of the main drive motor into and away from the tire. Combined with a proprietary feedback loop, this system can detect any slippage between the drive motor and tire instantly, and adjust force accordingly to compensate, while simultaneously regulating drive motor RPM to the exact value needed for maximum power delivery in all conditions. It also allows the motor to lift completely free of the tire for zero drag when desired. And to increase pressure while reversing motor direction to enable true regenerative braking - not regenerative 'drag', but regenerative BRAKING - no other e-bike friction drive system can do this. The SRV4's VFTCS truly transforms friction drive for e-bikes and scooters, taking a century-old technology and making it fully competitive today.

- Main PCB & Motor Control System: ShareRoller's main PCB integrates our traction control logic and control systems, all wireless communications, all accessory I/O, and an intelligent RGB lighting system with one of the most sophisticated motor controllers on the market today. We've invested a significant amount of time and capital here, and it's a big part of what makes the SRV4 so revolutionary. In addition to the most efficient and quietest motor control technology, it also includes continuous current monitoring and control, as well as precise RPM monitoring and regulation to enable ultra-sensitive automated traction control. We've got some clever feedback systems here too that make the traction control nearly bulletproof, but we can't reveal those just yet.

- Drive Motor: Completely custom design with fully sealed housing for unmatched durability in wet and dirty environments, the highest grade magnets available, ultra-thin stator laminations, ultra-tight airgap, stainless sealed Japanese bearings, an ultra-stable dual-stator mounting design, and a user-replaceable drive belt system (even though the belt should never wear out). Hundreds of engineering design hours are behind this incredible motor, and it offers tremendous low-speed torque for its size, the ability to start from rest, maximum possible efficiency, optimal drive-belt flexibility, and unmatched durability.

- Wireless Throttle: The wireless throttle for the SRV4 has many, many functions - it's far more complex than the basic throttle + mode + indicator of the earlier versions. The SRV4 throttle is not only wireless and rechargeable, but includes a throttle/brake slider, mode buttons, switches, and LED indicators. And the physical design has to be unbelievably flexible to mount on multiple types of handlebars on both bikes and scooters, without requiring any adaptors to be installed on the handlebars (which is how the previous throttles attached). This has taken many iterations to get right, and we think we've finally got it. Unfortunately, we can't show pictures of this one yet due to the pending patent filings, but as soon as that's done we look forward to sharing it with you.

- Battery Pack: Unlike most others, we've designed a custom battery pack from the ground up. Not only have we integrated a USB charge port, LED battery gauge, and secondary 'kill-switch,' but it's all in a custom molded shape that mounts nicely on a bike downtube (using a quick-release system of course), while still fitting underneath the front baskets of PBSC share bikes. And it connects effortlessly with the motor assembly to create one easy-to-carry package when you want to take your SRV4 with you. This has been an enormous challenge to pull off, but we're very happy with the end result.

- Retracting Power Cable: First of its kind in an electric bike / scooter application. High-current, single-pull locking retractable cable allows you to extend the motor cable from the battery to the exact length you need for whatever bike or scooter you're mounting the SRV4 on. And then easily retract it instantly to reconnect the motor unit to the battery when you need to carry the SRV4, with the power cable tidily stowed away. This is another complex and long lead-time custom product we had to develop, but we wanted to keep the install/remove process as simple and quick as possible, and this was a critical piece.

- Magnetic Power & PAS Connectors: These ultra-cool connectors are IP67 waterproof and install or remove instantly for unparalleled convenience. We didn't want to settle for a screw-barrel style connector that would require a solid minute of fiddling in order to change battery packs or plug the pack in to charge. And for the PAS sensor, it absolutely needs to be effortless, since you'll connect/disconnect the PAS every time you take the SR off your bike. These connectors are hard to find and very expensive, but we're not going to settle for something less.

- Smartphone App: SRV4's smartphone app (compatible with both Android and iPhone) presents an informative dashboard while you ride, displaying critical information like Speed, Power, Distance, TailWind Mode, PAS Mode, and Battery %. The SRV4 app can also be used to change settings for power limits, speed limits, TailWind Mode and PAS Mode. And that's just for the launch version. We have lots of clever features planned down the road with future updates...

- Smart RGB LED lighting: Headlights and Taillights are critical features - visibility is paramount for safety, and keeping standalone lights charged and installed on multiple bikes or scooters can be a pain. So we made sure to keep LED lights in the new SRV4, despite challenging packaging constraints. Even better, SRV4's Smart RGB lights can do more than just display one solid color, but we'll have to unveil that feature later, and we promise it's not a gimmick.

We hope all the information above has helped explain why the development of the new SRV4 is taking so much longer than planned. We can't overstate how sorry we are for these delays, but please understand that we are doing everything in our power to get your ShareRoller to you as quickly as possible. And we promise we will deliver a product that far exceeds your expectations in every way.

Thank you again for your continued support, enthusiasm, and patience.

Jeff Guida & The ShareRoller Team
 
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dermbrian

New Member
The question a lot of us have still is unanswered: When is the next opportunity to order one??????

I know that these delays are horrible for those that are in for this round of production, but I really want an e-bike drive just like this. I want to ride my bike as a bike when the conditions permit, such as when I want the exercise or when sweating just doesn't matter. The info on the traction system completely disengaging sounds perfect. The ability to remove the drive and carry it up to breakroom in the hospital where I work sounds perfect. I want this. I'm rooting for production past crowdfunding, and being available for purchase and immediate delivery some day with mail-in repair or user spare parts ordering. Good luck, Jeff.

Brian
 

Nirmala

Active Member
Well, I did hear from Jeff at ShareRoller today. They are now saying shipping will be in April, but they also shared a lot more details about the design:

Hello ShareRoller Indiegogo backer:

As you've probably surmised, we've been VERY busy since our suppliers returned to work after the Chinese New Year Holiday. Unfortunately, a few of them took longer than we'd expected to ramp back up, so we_ just_ received the last of our final production samples at the end of February, hence the delay in getting out this Update.

We're now focused on completing all validation and durability testing as quickly as possible so that we can place final volume orders. The good news is that all our suppliers can deliver in 4 weeks or less, so we will be able to begin assembly one month after the orders are placed.

If all components perform as expected, we should be able to begin assembly sometime in April (meaning we will start shipping then). We will let you know as soon as we have placed all orders and the clock begins ticking.

In the meantime, we're going to accelerate the 'teaser' reveals, showing you more and more of what we've worked so hard on for the past year+. In this Update, we present the new production motors and the ShareRoller phone app (please see the attached pics for both).

We already told you some of the glorious details of the new motors in our last Update, but they are worth repeating:

Completely custom design with fully sealed housing for unmatched durability in wet and dirty environments, the highest grade magnets available, ultra-thin stator laminations, ultra-tight airgap, stainless sealed Japanese bearings, an ultra-stable dual-stator mounting design, and a user-replaceable drive belt system (even though the belt should never wear out).



Another feature we're very excited about is the dual-side aluminum mounting plates, which not only provide unparalleled rigidity for the motor assembly, but also function as external heatsinks, helping to keep the motor cool under heavy loads. It's also worth pointing out that the new low-profile design of these mounting plates, along with a significantly wider belt, will allow the SRV4 to work well on even the fattest fat-bike tires.

Speaking of belts, you can also see our latest urethane belts here, and they bear special mention. We've been working with a world-class urethane supplier for over 3 years now, optimizing both the compound and the tread pattern of our drive belts. Finding a belt that grips well in both dry and wet conditions, is durable enough to last thousands of miles, and gentle enough to not wear down a bike or scooter tire is an enormous challenge. Our SRV2 belts worked well, but we never stopped pursuing even better performance. And we're extremely excited to report that we've achieved another step-change improvement in wet weather grip with our new SRV4 belts!

Coupled with our Variable Force Traction Control System (VFTCS) that we mentioned before, this is a game-changer for friction drive in wet conditions, and exactly the answer we've been working towards for years. All of us at ShareRoller continue to cringe when we see sandpaper or grip tape applied to friction drive motors to help them work in the wet - these materials are designed to abrade; they are in fact cutting tools. So for the sake of bicycle tires everywhere, we hope we can finally put an end to that carnage.

Next up for this Update's teaser reveals: the new ShareRoller phone app, for both Android and iOs.



We've put a tremendous amount of time and energy into developing our phone app, and we're thrilled with the end result (however we still want your feedback, see below!). We wanted to accomplish two things with our app:

1) Provide unmatched flexibility for changing settings, modes, and limits (including US vs Canada vs EU/UK power and speed restrictions)

2) Present a 'Dashboard' that you'd actually want to use while riding, giving all the information you need to maximize your electrically-assisted ride, whether for commuting or for exercise.

As you can see, the SR Dashboard provides standard real-time Speed and Distance information (like many others). But we've also added 'exercise-app' style timing features, including 'Lap' functionality that incorporates not only Distance, Time, and Average Speed, but also WH used, so you can track how much power you're adding to your workouts or commutes (just please never feel guilty to indulge in WH!).

And instead of only providing simple 'Battery %' info, we've also included a smart 'Projected Range' calculation that looks at your historical Watt-Hr/mile consumption while underway to give you a much more accurate estimate of how many miles you've got 'left in the tank.' And, the Projected Range calculations also incorporate our power-limiting 'Throttle Power Max' settings (or PAS power levels), allowing you to dial back SRV4's power output to be sure you have enough range to make it home. How's that for tackling range anxiety? And rest assured, even if you're not using the phone app, battery % info is always provided both via SRV4's RGB status LED AND the multi-segment LED gauge built into our battery packs.

One final comment, since we have developed this App in-house, we have the flexibility to make changes or additions. So please let us know if there's something you'd love to see added or modified from what we've shown here - and we may be able to incorporate it into production!

Finally, the 'Smart RBG LED lighting' we mentioned in our last Update. The SRV4 has 5 RGB LEDs. Two to function as headlights (in white) Two for taillights (in red). (Which can easily be reversed if you mount your SRV4 under the bottom bracket, where it faces the opposite direction). Plus one LED for status info (in case you're riding without the phone app). Since these are all software controlled, we can do whatever we want with them - they can flash, they can change colors at will, they can dim in syncopation. Take a look at this VLB (VeryLowBudget) video for a short example of what we're doing for now (the video shows the view from the handlebars - our apologies for how dark it is, but we wanted to show the LEDs clearly, and our patent attorneys don't want us to show the complete SRV4 design publicly just yet).

(Link Removed - No Longer Exists)

For now, we wanted to keep the Smart LED functions relatively simple (but we're open to more creativity later). You can select standard 'always-on' lighting for minimum distraction, or rapid flashing for maximum visibility. Or you can turn off the headlights and taillights to be discreet, while leaving the status LED active for information. And finally, if you _really_ don't want your SRV4 to be noticed, you can activate the completely dark 'Stealth' mode (this has been a frequent request from our SRV2 customers).

One last thing - both our Phone App and the system operating software are updatable 'Over-the-Air' (OTA), so we'll be able to include your SRV4 in any Updates that come down the road… Future-Proof has a nice ring to it, and everything about the SRV4 has been designed with that in mind.

That's all for now. We hope these two 'teasers' help you appreciate why this is taking so long and why it will be worth the wait, as painful as it may be. Thanks again for your patience and support as we do everything we can to bring you the very best SRV4 we can as fast as we can.

Jeff Guida & The ShareRoller Team
 

Nirmala

Active Member
Another email update from Jeff Guida with both good news and bad news:

Our durability testing of the final SRV4 production prototypes is almost complete, and the performance of the new SR4 design has truly astonished; it's exceeding even our highest ambitions for the product. We really can't wait for all of you to experience it firsthand!

And we're _almost_ there, but unfortunately it's going to be another month before production kicks off. We realize Summer is almost upon us and everyone is beyond ready to receive their SR's, but please understand we are doing everything we possibly can to get these assembled and shipped as quickly as possible.

There were two main reasons for the timeline slip:

1) We weren't happy with the retract and hold reliability of our custom retractable battery cable, and to improve this required a tiny increase in the diameter of the retractor housing (literally from 70mm to 73mm). And believe it or not, this change then necessitated multiple changes to the battery pack housing design as well, which was just about to go to tooling... So lots and lots of unexpected CAD redesign here and weeks of back-and-forth with two different suppliers.

2) We finally had a chance to do extended load testing of the new sealed motors in warm weather and were not satisfied with the high exterior temperatures we measured. We were worried this might be an issue, as when we moved to fully sealed motors for durability, we had to abandon the airflow cooling that enabled the open-air SRV2 motors to remain within temp limits. However, given what we've learned through years of real-world testing, it was an absolutely essential change: contrary to what some may say, open-air motors WILL degrade rather quickly in outdoor bike/scooter use, as dirt and debris enter the motor and cannot be fully removed via simple cleaning methods (i.e. water rinsing).

And while reviews show competitors' friction-drive motors exceeding 250F during use (even with open-air designs!), this is not something we would accept for SRV4 (even though our top-quality magnets and windings can withstand 300F), as these high temps might damage tires and could certainly cause burns (especially important given the removable nature of SRV4). Fortunately, we were able to solve this problem with a few clever engineering changes (that we're not going to disclose at the moment for competitive reasons). And we've now achieved the magical combination of long-term durability without overheating challenges. We're very happy with the improved performance and you will be too.

Needless to say, both of these unplanned changes took many weeks of additional engineering and prototyping work. But they are now complete and we've begun placing final production orders this week, and expect to have them all placed by next week. Given our suppliers' 3 to 4 week production timelines, this should enable us to begin final assembly by mid to late May, and start shipping very soon thereafter.

Before we sign off, here's one surprising result we've learned during testing that we thought you would appreciate: SRV4's true regenerative braking is a lot more beneficial than we expected!

Recall that unlike many friction-drive competitors that claim 'regen' for the drag imparted by the motor when not in use (and others that can't even claim that since the motor falls off the tire any time power is removed), the new SRV4 offers true regen BRAKING that can actively slow the bike while recharging the batteries.

Well, based on our testing to-date, it appears that SRV4's regen braking can extend range by as much as 20-30% in hilly conditions or frequent stop-start riding! This is a lot more than we'd expected, and should truly make a difference in your real-world battery range.

And the coolest part is that you can watch your regen braking recharge the battery with pinpoint accuracy via the SRV4 phone app's real-time Watt-Hr consumption readout. It's quite satisfying to watch the 'fuel-tank' refill as you moderate speed down a long incline via regen. And so much better than wearing out your brake pads :)

Fingers crossed that our next email will be to confirm shipping addresses and advise of ship dates. Thanks again for your unbelievable patience and support.

Jeff Guida & The ShareRoller Team