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Digital Drive

Old 11-18-22, 08:10 PM
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mtnbud
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Digital Drive

I had never heard of digital drive. It certainly wouldn't make any sense for my type of riding, but it might make sense for some ebike users. I could understand for some who ride throttle ebikes could use the pedals to generate electricity for charging the battery rather than actually engaging the wheel. It might be a sensible way to increasing range...
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Old 11-18-22, 08:19 PM
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Yes, another stupid thing to sell to wannabees. Hope they make millions.
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Old 11-18-22, 08:38 PM
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At least they were honest about the shortcomings.
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Old 11-18-22, 09:06 PM
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It will be interesting to look at this thread/subject in 10 or 15 years. It doesn't seem so far fetched to me.
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Old 11-19-22, 12:28 AM
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Originally Posted by Camilo View Post
It will be interesting to look at this thread/subject in 10 or 15 years. It doesn't seem so far fetched to me.
Don't look for it to get much different. No matter what they try they aren't going to substantially improve the electrical efficiency of motors or generators, and adding more sophisticated control electronics will only make it worse by siphoning off more power to run those.

These bikes are going to weigh about 70 pounds already, without adding a battery (and more control circuitry) to it--and remember that the frame has to be strengthened made heavier to accommodate that. And can you say, 'proprietary parts'?

As much as I have a philosophical objection (and one very practical one) to derailleur drives, even I have to admire their efficiency. The only way to turn a bicycle wheel more efficiently is to make it a single-speed coaxial drive, typical of the old penny-farthings and most unicycles.
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Old 11-19-22, 01:00 AM
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Originally Posted by rollagain View Post
Don't look for it to get much different. No matter what they try they aren't going to substantially improve the electrical efficiency of motors or generators, and adding more sophisticated control electronics will only make it worse by siphoning off more power to run those.

These bikes are going to weigh about 70 pounds already, without adding a battery (and more control circuitry) to it--and remember that the frame has to be strengthened made heavier to accommodate that. And can you say, 'proprietary parts'?

As much as I have a philosophical objection (and one very practical one) to derailleur drives, even I have to admire their efficiency. The only way to turn a bicycle wheel more efficiently is to make it a single-speed coaxial drive, typical of the old penny-farthings and most unicycles.
You may be right. I'm no engineer and certainly am not saying I expect this sort of thing to become viable. But I stand by my comment that it will be interesting to see what the next 10-15 years brings into e-bike technology.
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Old 11-19-22, 09:28 AM
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Old 11-19-22, 09:32 AM
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You'll have energy loss from both the generator and the motor; a chain drive would be more efficient.
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Old 11-20-22, 12:02 AM
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Tried more than a few times. The Mando Footlose was one of the early flops. A human being pedaling a generator cannot generate enough power to turn the motor on an ebike. So when the battery is dead, you gotta sit there and pump for an hour to get enough charge to go a few minutes.



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Old 11-22-22, 05:34 PM
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Originally Posted by Camilo View Post
You may be right. I'm no engineer and certainly am not saying I expect this sort of thing to become viable. But I stand by my comment that it will be interesting to see what the next 10-15 years brings into e-bike technology.
What has 10 - 15 years till the present time brought in the way of innovation in e-bike development? Seems to me that interesting ideas like the Tidal Force and SuperPedestrian projects briefly got the interest of consumers and Venture Capitalists but ... so I'm not taking that bet. Rather I am predicting more of the same. Smartphones will be self aware in 15 years but e-bikes will still rely on Li-ion batteries and Class 1 will still be 20mph or it may be less! 12mph is a possible restriction on the top speed of an assisted bicycle in 10 years. How much sophistication does a vehicle with that limited a performance envelope need? <shrug>
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Old 11-23-22, 08:47 AM
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I am the first to say that I like belt drive. It offers almost chainlike efficiency along with cleanliness (but don't let anyone tell you that you can't throw a belt in traffic).

It comes down to how much inefficiency I am willing to deal with. the generator/motor drive (yes, I refuse to use the Analog / Digital nomenclature) is just too inefficient. It might work as a way to cheat into Class 3 with no real effort on the part of the user. However, I think it would be easier just to ramp up the torque sensor sensitivity. I can see it potentially easier to change the tyres.

I can see a use in some velomobiles. particularly velomobiles focused on transportation instead of enthusiasts. The more I think about it, I see this as a good application.

All that said, I see it as a solution in search of a problem.
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