Why Put 12 Speed Groups On Bafang Ultra Bikes?

reed scott

Active Member
I brought up a similar discussion in the General forum. More about chains. I just recently got to thinking about chain strength and cassettes. I ran into this whole subject when I was thinking of getting a 'hunting' style bike because of their beefy construction not that I need or want one to hunt. Then I got a big dose of the same medicine reading Luna Bike's blog and whacky Karl's adventures destroying cassette cogs with hotrodded HD Bafang motors.

Now many here are getting their own versions of the high watt output Bafang Ultra motor. So ... are the hunting bike guys correct in their use of 8 and 9 speed full steel cassettes and the strongest KMC chain they can get? Why are we ogling high dollar drive trains and leading bike makers to put those on their bikes when Shimano Deore LX would be more than adequate? Do $300 derailleurs shift better than $100 dollar derailleurs when only eight cogs are involved?

I'm truly asking. I do not have a fully formed opinion here. But I do suspect folks might be overly drawn to the latest and greatest shiny object over more rugged functional mechanics.

Disclaimer: This does not apply to the 'Euro' motor folks. They mostly need twelve speeds.
 

Nova Haibike

Well-Known Member
Why are we ogling high dollar drive trains and leading bike makers to put those on their bikes when Shimano Deore LX would be more than adequate?
Why? Because the industry pushes it, in the name up progress and upgrading. You cannot even buy Deore LX anymore, at least not in name. If you wanted that quality level, it is 10 speed or more; there is no choice.

Do $300 derailleurs shift better than $100 dollar derailleurs when only eight cogs are involved?
The $300 derailleurs will not even work with 8 speed, because the cable actuation ratio is different. The only way to get a higher quality 8 speed compatible derailleur is to find a NOS or good condition used example. Otherwise, you are stuck with a cheaper construction Alivio or lower tier derailleur.
 

reed scott

Active Member
Why? Because the industry pushes it, in the name up progress and upgrading. You cannot even buy Deore LX anymore, at least not in name. If you wanted that quality level, it is 10 speed or more; there is no choice.



The $300 derailleurs will not even work with 8 speed, because the cable actuation ratio is different. The only way to get a higher quality 8 speed compatible derailleur is to find a NOS or good condition used example. Otherwise, you are stuck with a cheaper construction Alivio or lower tier derailleur.
Hmmmm...I sense a marketing opportunity.
 

Zachdds

Member
I have mentioned on a few posts. I put a 3 speed igh on an ebike build recently and have really enjoyed it. I like the 3 options way better then the 9 speed that was on it earlier. I love the perfect chain line and no derailer. With only 3 options I know to shift out of low at 14 mph. Out of medium at 19 mph. Simple is better. I would love to have a 5 speed. I think it would be perfect, particularly if it could maintain the large jumps of the 3 speed. Unfortunately they do not make any 5 speeds for fat bike tires only 135 mm widths.
 

rarobo

New Member
How would the 3 speed work on roads with a lot of hills, seems it would put stress/heat on the components. If you estimated the spread of the gears, what would the tooth range be?
 

Zachdds

Member
I live in roanoke va and routinely climb mountains with more then 1000 feet vertical with the bbshd running at 1500 watts the whole time. I am just over 1200 miles running it like this. It gets hot but keeps
chugging along. I run at 22 tooth main cog and 42 up front. I think the low gear would be around 42x27.5 and high would be 42x16.5. I can achieve around 30 mph on high and on flats.
 

reed scott

Active Member
I live in roanoke va and routinely climb mountains with more then 1000 feet vertical with the bbshd running at 1500 watts the whole time. I am just over 1200 miles running it like this. It gets hot but keeps
chugging along. I run at 22 tooth main cog and 42 up front. I think the low gear would be around 42x27.5 and high would be 42x16.5. I can achieve around 30 mph on high and on flats.
Internally geared hubs make a lot of sense for ebikes. I can't help but think of my sister's skinny 'English' bike as we called it from 60 years ago. It had a 3 speed hub. None of us had a clue how that thing worked. I could conceive of having an IGH on a bike but with more than 3 gears. It's another aspect of the bike I can't fix myself though. Something about that niggles. The price of the best ones deters as well.
 

Stefan Mikes

Well-Known Member
I could conceive of having an IGH on a bike but with more than 3 gears.
Reed, I was riding around Copenhagen on a three-speed IGH traditional city bike (a rental one) and could do a quite steep climb with my puny legs (I know I can input 150 W with my legs if I really try). Don't you think the 3-speed IGH might be adequate for Bafang Ultra?
 

reed scott

Active Member
Reed, I was riding around Copenhagen on a three-speed IGH traditional city bike (a rental one) and could do a quite steep climb with my puny legs (I know I can input 150 W with my legs if I really try). Don't you think the 3-speed IGH might be adequate for Bafang Ultra?
I DO not know. I'm tryin to figure all this out myself. 😉
 

john peck

Well-Known Member
I brought up a similar discussion in the General forum. More about chains. I just recently got to thinking about chain strength and cassettes. I ran into this whole subject when I was thinking of getting a 'hunting' style bike because of their beefy construction not that I need or want one to hunt. Then I got a big dose of the same medicine reading Luna Bike's blog and whacky Karl's adventures destroying cassette cogs with hotrodded HD Bafang motors.

Now many here are getting their own versions of the high watt output Bafang Ultra motor. So ... are the hunting bike guys correct in their use of 8 and 9 speed full steel cassettes and the strongest KMC chain they can get? Why are we ogling high dollar drive trains and leading bike makers to put those on their bikes when Shimano Deore LX would be more than adequate? Do $300 derailleurs shift better than $100 dollar derailleurs when only eight cogs are involved?

I'm truly asking. I do not have a fully formed opinion here. But I do suspect folks might be overly drawn to the latest and greatest shiny object over more rugged functional mechanics.

Disclaimer: This does not apply to the 'Euro' motor folks. They mostly need twelve speeds.
Cassettes & 500w + motors do not get along really well, but I have a couple new 11/32s x 8 if someone wants them. I fell for the same
ebay listing twice, months apart, that called those cassettes freewheels at the top of the ad & cassettes on the second line.
 
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reed scott

Active Member
Why? Because the industry pushes it, in the name up progress and upgrading. You cannot even buy Deore LX anymore, at least not in name. If you wanted that quality level, it is 10 speed or more; there is no choice.



The $300 derailleurs will not even work with 8 speed, because the cable actuation ratio is different. The only way to get a higher quality 8 speed compatible derailleur is to find a NOS or good condition used example. Otherwise, you are stuck with a cheaper construction Alivio or lower tier derailleur.
Hard to know who's pushing and who's pulling. With all the movement to suped up Ultra motors I think this needs to get sorted. Not hard to do for the industry. Unfortunately the industry is almost all off-shore. How low rent is the Alivio derailleur? Bakcou hunting bikes puts them on their bikes.
 

john peck

Well-Known Member
The thing about cheap derailleurs is that they might last forever, if not they´re expendable. I usually end up laying a bike
down hard a couple times a year while avoiding being road kill. . A $300 derailleur may or may not survive.
 

mebentz2

New Member
I'd really like to see a mid mount transmission for these E-Bikes and get the unsprung weight off the rear wheel...

And I totally agree the 11/12 speed cassettes are causing more harm than good with the extra power from the motor. I only use 3 or 4 gears on my 11s Bafang 1500W bike. I have another road bike with 400W and 3 speed shimano IGH, and I wish it had 4 or 5 gears.

I think the 8 speed cassette makes a lot of sense for more hilly areas...
 

reed scott

Active Member
I'd really like to see a mid mount transmission for these E-Bikes and get the unsprung weight off the rear wheel...

And I totally agree the 11/12 speed cassettes are causing more harm than good with the extra power from the motor. I only use 3 or 4 gears on my 11s Bafang 1500W bike. I have another road bike with 400W and 3 speed shimano IGH, and I wish it had 4 or 5 gears.

I think the 8 speed cassette makes a lot of sense for more hilly areas...

Thanks for that. What gives me pause is the chain. A nine speed chain is the largest strongest chain made. ( not counting single speed ) Everything gets weaker from there on up. I would think Bafang hotrodders would give more thought to that.
 

john peck

Well-Known Member
I'd really like to see a mid mount transmission for these E-Bikes and get the unsprung weight off the rear wheel...

And I totally agree the 11/12 speed cassettes are causing more harm than good with the extra power from the motor. I only use 3 or 4 gears on my 11s Bafang 1500W bike. I have another road bike with 400W and 3 speed shimano IGH, and I wish it had 4 or 5 gears.

I think the 8 speed cassette makes a lot of sense for more hilly areas...
I have a 7 spd freewheel yet rarely need the lower gears even though it´s very hilly here & I only have 500w. The bike has a triple
chainring, but even on the steepest grades I´ve never needed the smallest ring. The largest ring is only used when pedaling is too
easy on the middle. For the most part, it may as well be a single spd. since the modes will cover almost any situation.
 

kurt_s

Member
First I upgraded my Lunacycle Apollo to an Archon X1 motor about a month ago. This was a great improvement over the Luna Ludicrous tuned Ultra. After doing that I felt the shifting was clunky and holding back enjoyment using the new motor. In fact, I had had one incident with the chainring throwing the chain. Maybe I did not fidget with the indexing and adjustment of the SRAM Eagle GX derailleur and 1290 10-50 cassette with 44T Wolf Tooth chainring as much as I should have but I wanted more precision. I told myself having better shifting would help to be more kind to the driveline but fully admit that I am a card-carrying farkle nerd.

Last week I completed an upgrade from SRAM GX 12 speed derailleur and shifter on Lunacycle Apollo that to SRAM ASX wireless and updated the dropper to AXS wireless too. Though I have only ridden about 100 miles on the new setup I am finding a use for all 12 gears. Even on the flat, it is easier to stay in contact with the peddles and adjust my cadence and speed even though I could get by with 9 instead of 12. It feels very intuitive to stop peddling, hit the button, and then spin easily to complete the shift. I can complete shifts even when leaned into a turn. The AXS can but tuned to skip gears but in the documentation, it even says you will void your warranty if you do that on an ebike.

Anywho, I am your case study of going the opposite direction I guess and I will report if I break anything. My driveway almost necessitates the 44/50 selection when loaded etc.. but I am really glad I did so far as I am a motorcycle guy and it feels a lot more natural to me to be selecting gears this way.
 

pushkar

Well-Known Member
Thanks @kurt_s for the feedback. I am exploring a 9 speed version for an upcoming bike.

Can you please tell me more about the ASX skipping gears ? I will be offering wireless shifting - but Im not familiar with it skipping gears. That would be a game changer for ebikes.
 

kurt_s

Member
Thanks @kurt_s for the feedback. I am exploring a 9 speed version for an upcoming bike.

Can you please tell me more about the ASX skipping gears ? I will be offering wireless shifting - but Im not familiar with it skipping gears. That would be a game changer for ebikes.
Not skip by malfunction but by design which is configurable.

See these screenshots they will explain... I so want an app that displays what gear you are in but I think that comm is proprietary right?

Also note on the gear position you can micro-adjust each gear so if someone wanted to go to the Google machine it might be possible to make the derailleur work with non SRAM cassettes?
 

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pushkar

Well-Known Member
Not skip by malfunction but by design which is configurable.

See these screenshots they will explain... I so want an app that displays what gear you are in but I think that comm is proprietary right?

Also note on the gear position you can micro-adjust each gear so if someone wanted to go to the Google machine it might be possible to make the derailleur work with non SRAM cassettes?
Picture of your shifter please? You can control your dropper and shifters on the same buttons ?