Author Topic: Audax on an ebike  (Read 2190 times)

Auntie Helen

  • 6 Wheels in Germany
Re: Audax on an ebike
« Reply #25 on: March 21, 2020, 05:28:41 am »
My record with my E-bike is 210km and the battery still has 9% left, supposedly.

This is in a velomobile, derestricted though so on all the time. Average speed was about 27km/h and we had lots of stop-start in towns. Flat as a pancake though as it was NL.
My blog on cycling in Germany and eating German cake – http://www.auntiehelen.co.uk


Re: Audax on an ebike
« Reply #26 on: March 21, 2020, 07:51:32 am »
My record with my E-bike is 210km and the battery still has 9% left, supposedly.

This is in a velomobile, derestricted though so on all the time. Average speed was about 27km/h and we had lots of stop-start in towns. Flat as a pancake though as it was NL.

Even though it's a velo and flat, that is extremely good going.

Speed is plays a part, so you'd have gone even further tootling along at 15kmh.


Auntie Helen

  • 6 Wheels in Germany
Re: Audax on an ebike
« Reply #27 on: March 21, 2020, 09:24:34 am »
The battery is 14 mA(??) and weighs 3kg, but the velomobile is basically so efficient in shape that it needs very little power. My setting number 1 of 5, which is about 15 watts only, is enough for me to keep up with my male partner in his heavier velomobile.
My blog on cycling in Germany and eating German cake – http://www.auntiehelen.co.uk


Re: Audax on an ebike
« Reply #28 on: March 21, 2020, 04:19:31 pm »
The battery is 14 mA(??) and weighs 3kg, but the velomobile is basically so efficient in shape that it needs very little power. My setting number 1 of 5, which is about 15 watts only, is enough for me to keep up with my male partner in his heavier velomobile.

The battery measurement is 14 amp hours, a little larger than most ebike batteries, but there are those that are larger.

As you say, the efficiency of the velo is playing a big part.

Your weight and input is another important variable.

It would be interesting to put you on an upright ebike on the same route.

Re: Audax on an ebike
« Reply #29 on: March 22, 2020, 08:40:17 pm »
My girl bought a ribble ebike last autumn to be able to join me on hillier rides.

She has done a few of 100 - 160km audax rides on it and finished with about 15 - 20% battery remaining.

I have to give thanks to the organisers of the rides, who were very understanding and happy for her to ride without validation.

No other riders on the ride were upset to see someone taking part on an ebike - indeed the bike generated a significant amount of interest/envy at controls. The general sentiment was - "whatever gets you out on a bike is good"



 

Re: Audax on an ebike
« Reply #30 on: March 23, 2020, 05:57:08 am »
Once the current world issues settle.


As previously stated, no probs on BP events, although I seem to recall an exception here being AAA events.

Auk should use this time as a golden opportunity to embrace the e-bike world. It is only going to get bigger not smaller, and have an e-bike denotation on their systems.

As stated by Pale Rider, and echoed by every e-bike I've encountered on events - points are not an issue. The vast majority aren't auk's and wonder what the hell is going on.

E-bike riders are not entering events because of current confusion/legislation. For an organisation that is meant to be promoting cycling, there appears to be a 404 issue.

And once you have an "e-bike" notifier available - roll it out to all classifications. Give the impression of an outgoing, all embracing, all welcoming entity, not mog.

Fully agree with this. 

The idea that another rider could draft an e-bike could only make sense to someone who had never either ridden one or ridden with one, but who is very interested in hypotheticals with very low real-world probability.

Also an e-bike can easily do longer distances than 100km by (you'll kick yourself for not thinking of this!) ....

....having one, or more, spare batteries.

Cudzoziemiec

  • Waking up now, put the kettle on!
Re: Audax on an ebike
« Reply #31 on: March 23, 2020, 09:45:01 am »
Battery technology will only improve anyway. In principle, if someone wants to do LEL or similar on an ebike for no points, why not let them? Take their entry, give them cake and a specially coloured card so they can share the joy of stamp collecting and stopping at hard to identify places in order to answer obscure questions, serve them beans on toast in a village hall at 4a.m. surrounded by the aroma of eau d'axer; share the audax experience!

This might in turn lead to a separate ebike points or mileage competition, because things evolve. That would be a question to deal with in time. More immediately and usefully, some sort of e-rrty could incentivise ebikers to get out as it does others.
I do not ride a great big Mercian, gangster tanwalls, fixed cog in the back.

Kim

  • Timelord
Re: Audax on an ebike
« Reply #32 on: March 23, 2020, 01:55:35 pm »
The idea that another rider could draft an e-bike could only make sense to someone who had never either ridden one or ridden with one, but who is very interested in hypotheticals with very low real-world probability.

To be fair, drafting e-bikes can be brilliant in a commuter context.  There's nothing better than slotting your Brommie in behind someone on a sit-up-and-beg city bike making a convenient 15mph hole in a bastard headwind.

It's just that that situation doesn't scale meaningfully to audax.
Careful, Kim. Your sarcasm's showing...

quixoticgeek

  • Mostly Harmless
Re: Audax on an ebike
« Reply #33 on: March 23, 2020, 07:58:29 pm »
To be fair, drafting e-bikes can be brilliant in a commuter context.  There's nothing better than slotting your Brommie in behind someone on a sit-up-and-beg city bike making a convenient 15mph hole in a bastard headwind.

It's just that that situation doesn't scale meaningfully to audax.

Yep, this is why I love ebikes. On my old commute, I used to love it when I picked up an ebike's wheel at the start of Vondel park, and follow them for a good couple of km without needing to put too much effort in.

J
--
Beer, bikes, and backpacking
http://b.42q.eu/

StevieB

  • I'm an embarrassment to my bicycle!
Re: Audax on an ebike
« Reply #34 on: March 26, 2020, 08:08:39 pm »
Battery technology will only improve anyway.

Not sure why people assume this - battery technology moves very slowly...
Lithium batteries have been used commercially for 25 years and there has not been any major breakthroughs in that time, indeed there never can be until someone comes up with a new combination of materials.
It may be self-flagellation, but it still hurts

Kim

  • Timelord
Re: Audax on an ebike
« Reply #35 on: March 27, 2020, 12:53:19 am »
Lithium batteries have been used commercially for 25 years and there has not been any major breakthroughs in that time, indeed there never can be until someone comes up with a new combination of materials.

The main improvements seem to be in management electronics (extending the lifetime of the battery) and cost per Wh, neither of which are as exciting as energy density, but certainly make a difference in terms of people's willingness to invest in expensive battery-powered things.
Careful, Kim. Your sarcasm's showing...

Re: Audax on an ebike
« Reply #36 on: March 27, 2020, 06:30:28 am »
The e-bike segment has never used the latest battery technology. 

Li batteries have been available for far longer than they have been widely used on e-bikes.  When I was involved with e-bikes about 10-12 years ago, the main battery technology in use was NiMH and SLAs were still widespread.  At that time, Li batteries were very much a new thing.  There were widespread teething problems with early e-bike Li batteries, which have only been resolved in the last few years. 

I'm no longer close to it but I expect there will still be a fair bit of potential trickling down from what the automotive companies are developing to the e-bike segment.

Through work, I spoke to the head of European fleet for one of the big parcel carriers a few weeks ago.  He said that battery prices have fallen by 80% over the last 7 years.  I'd be surprised if e-bike batteries had seen that type of price reduction, but it should happen eventually. 

One thing that will drive it is that the parcel carriers are getting serious about e-cargo bikes for urban delivery.  Range per £ is crucial to them.

StevieB

  • I'm an embarrassment to my bicycle!
Re: Audax on an ebike
« Reply #37 on: March 28, 2020, 03:07:52 pm »
The main improvements seem to be in management electronics...

...widespread teething problems...

Mobile phone circuits and algorithms have been broken down (since forever) such that any function not in use can be switched off... that does not help massively with an e-bike as there is only one function.

Li is inherently dangerous, but by monitoring a battery's condition it is possible to charge it safely and faster than before... that is a huge plus for users.

Yes, tiny tweaks have been made to improve performance, but fundamentally it is still the same chemical reaction (and if you remember anything from school chemistry, you will know it is a miracle batteries work at all!)

My point is, over 20 years, the performance of electronics has improved 1,000 times, whereas battery performance has quadrupled, perhaps? So while technology is riding a wave of electronic advancement, batteries are a drag!

There are lots of very clever people trying to prove me wrong - in the car industry (for eg.) a tiny margin in performance is a BIG deal! But I’m still sceptical: for 70 years the electronics industry has known precisely how to achieve the next leap in performance, with batteries each tiny step makes it almost impossible to optimise any further in that direction.


It may be self-flagellation, but it still hurts

Kim

  • Timelord
Re: Audax on an ebike
« Reply #38 on: March 28, 2020, 03:39:09 pm »
The main improvements seem to be in management electronics...

Mobile phone circuits and algorithms have been broken down (since forever) such that any function not in use can be switched off... that does not help massively with an e-bike as there is only one function.

I meant in terms of battery management.  Charging and discharching rate control.  Cell balancing.  Thermal management.  Overcharge/deep discharge protection.  That sort of thing.  These days you can get idiot-proof all-in-one management chips for the battery chemistry of your choice that can coddle the battery without interference from your buggy firmware or end user.

Just as relevant to ebikes as it is to laptops or phones.  The batteries have longer lifetimes, even if the capacity isn't any different.
Careful, Kim. Your sarcasm's showing...

StevieB

  • I'm an embarrassment to my bicycle!
Re: Audax on an ebike
« Reply #39 on: March 28, 2020, 06:54:11 pm »
...extending the lifetime of the battery...

Yes, lifetime, granted.
It may be self-flagellation, but it still hurts

Kim

  • Timelord
Re: Audax on an ebike
« Reply #40 on: March 28, 2020, 07:19:14 pm »
...extending the lifetime of the battery...

Yes, lifetime, granted.

Makes a big difference for something like a ebike, where Li+ energy density is now good enough[1] for most practical purposes, but the idea of hundreds of pounds worth of battery pack not lasting more than a year or two would put people off.

(I think we're at the stage where the risk of proprietary mid-drive systems making frames obsolete is becoming a greater concern.)


[1] Pun not intended.
Careful, Kim. Your sarcasm's showing...

Re: Audax on an ebike
« Reply #41 on: March 29, 2020, 05:21:29 am »
The main improvements seem to be in management electronics...

...widespread teething problems...

Mobile phone circuits and algorithms have been broken down (since forever) such that any function not in use can be switched off... that does not help massively with an e-bike as there is only one function.

Li is inherently dangerous, but by monitoring a battery's condition it is possible to charge it safely and faster than before... that is a huge plus for users.

Yes, tiny tweaks have been made to improve performance, but fundamentally it is still the same chemical reaction (and if you remember anything from school chemistry, you will know it is a miracle batteries work at all!)

My point is, over 20 years, the performance of electronics has improved 1,000 times, whereas battery performance has quadrupled, perhaps? So while technology is riding a wave of electronic advancement, batteries are a drag!

There are lots of very clever people trying to prove me wrong - in the car industry (for eg.) a tiny margin in performance is a BIG deal! But I’m still sceptical: for 70 years the electronics industry has known precisely how to achieve the next leap in performance, with batteries each tiny step makes it almost impossible to optimise any further in that direction.

You are certainly spot on in terms of improvement in battery capacity - there has been next to none in the 10 years I've been ebiking.

The various lithium technologies were a leap forward over lead acid.

My first lithium battery was a Bosch one in 2010 with a capacity of 400wh.

The current battery is 500wh, but the case is slightly bigger.

Not quite proportionately bigger, so there has been an improvement in energy density, but only a small one.

I started the thread in the audax section, so my interest is in going longer, not faster.

Range for distance use remains the weak point of ebike batteries.

To get anywhere near 100 miles it is still necessary to carry two or even three lumpy batteries.

Given the glacial progress of the last 10 years, it's unlikely my cycling career will last long enough to see any marked improvement, and I may not even live long enough to see it.



mattc

  • n.b. have grown beard since photo taken
    • Didcot Audaxes
Re: Audax on an ebike
« Reply #42 on: March 29, 2020, 02:55:55 pm »
I'm expecting a plateau in progress, sadly.

Are the raw materials an issue? Now that carmakers are hoovering the stuff up.
Has never ridden RAAM
---------
No.11  Because of the great host of those who dislike the least appearance of "swank " when they travel the roads and lanes. - From Kuklos' 39 Articles

Kim

  • Timelord
Re: Audax on an ebike
« Reply #43 on: March 29, 2020, 05:34:31 pm »
Electric cars can only be a good thing for the battery industry.  As well as lowering the cost/watt-hour, they're pushing demand for things like eliminating the use of cobalt.  A lot of the battery supply chain problems cited by car manufacturers (most of whom have millions of diesel cars to sell first) seem a bit too convenient, especially as there's no sign of batteries becoming anything but cheaper for consumer electronics.

(I think for these purposes, an ebike battery is more comparable to a laptop battery than a car battery.)
Careful, Kim. Your sarcasm's showing...

Re: Audax on an ebike
« Reply #44 on: March 29, 2020, 08:12:40 pm »
The main improvements seem to be in management electronics...

...widespread teething problems...

Mobile phone circuits and algorithms have been broken down (since forever) such that any function not in use can be switched off... that does not help massively with an e-bike as there is only one function.

Li is inherently dangerous, but by monitoring a battery's condition it is possible to charge it safely and faster than before... that is a huge plus for users.

Yes, tiny tweaks have been made to improve performance, but fundamentally it is still the same chemical reaction (and if you remember anything from school chemistry, you will know it is a miracle batteries work at all!)

My point is, over 20 years, the performance of electronics has improved 1,000 times, whereas battery performance has quadrupled, perhaps? So while technology is riding a wave of electronic advancement, batteries are a drag!

There are lots of very clever people trying to prove me wrong - in the car industry (for eg.) a tiny margin in performance is a BIG deal! But I’m still sceptical: for 70 years the electronics industry has known precisely how to achieve the next leap in performance, with batteries each tiny step makes it almost impossible to optimise any further in that direction.

You are certainly spot on in terms of improvement in battery capacity - there has been next to none in the 10 years I've been ebiking.

The various lithium technologies were a leap forward over lead acid.

My first lithium battery was a Bosch one in 2010 with a capacity of 400wh.

The current battery is 500wh, but the case is slightly bigger.

Not quite proportionately bigger, so there has been an improvement in energy density, but only a small one.

I started the thread in the audax section, so my interest is in going longer, not faster.

Range for distance use remains the weak point of ebike batteries.

To get anywhere near 100 miles it is still necessary to carry two or even three lumpy batteries.

Given the glacial progress of the last 10 years, it's unlikely my cycling career will last long enough to see any marked improvement, and I may not even live long enough to see it.

My girl has done 100 mile rides and 100km AAA events on her Ribble with just the internal battery with about 15% power left at the end.

Re: Audax on an ebike
« Reply #45 on: March 30, 2020, 03:37:47 am »
The main improvements seem to be in management electronics...

...widespread teething problems...

Mobile phone circuits and algorithms have been broken down (since forever) such that any function not in use can be switched off... that does not help massively with an e-bike as there is only one function.

Li is inherently dangerous, but by monitoring a battery's condition it is possible to charge it safely and faster than before... that is a huge plus for users.

Yes, tiny tweaks have been made to improve performance, but fundamentally it is still the same chemical reaction (and if you remember anything from school chemistry, you will know it is a miracle batteries work at all!)

My point is, over 20 years, the performance of electronics has improved 1,000 times, whereas battery performance has quadrupled, perhaps? So while technology is riding a wave of electronic advancement, batteries are a drag!

There are lots of very clever people trying to prove me wrong - in the car industry (for eg.) a tiny margin in performance is a BIG deal! But I’m still sceptical: for 70 years the electronics industry has known precisely how to achieve the next leap in performance, with batteries each tiny step makes it almost impossible to optimise any further in that direction.

You are certainly spot on in terms of improvement in battery capacity - there has been next to none in the 10 years I've been ebiking.

The various lithium technologies were a leap forward over lead acid.

My first lithium battery was a Bosch one in 2010 with a capacity of 400wh.

The current battery is 500wh, but the case is slightly bigger.

Not quite proportionately bigger, so there has been an improvement in energy density, but only a small one.

I started the thread in the audax section, so my interest is in going longer, not faster.

Range for distance use remains the weak point of ebike batteries.

To get anywhere near 100 miles it is still necessary to carry two or even three lumpy batteries.

Given the glacial progress of the last 10 years, it's unlikely my cycling career will last long enough to see any marked improvement, and I may not even live long enough to see it.

My girl has done 100 mile rides and 100km AAA events on her Ribble with just the internal battery with about 15% power left at the end.

The light assist ebikes such as the Ribble and Orbea Gain are a slightly different kettle of fish, although there's no magic about the battery and motor.

They give a lot less assistance by using a smaller motor set up to draw less current, hence less battery use and longer range.

My Bosch ebike would go a lot further on lowest Eco setting, but the problem is the assistance on Eco doesn't do a lot more than compensate for the extra weight of the bike, particularly when ridden by a lumpy rider.

Range does vary a lot, but the majority of ebikers have what we might call 'full assistance' ebikes which in real world use give a range of 50 miles or fewer per battery.

As regards batteries used for electric car propulsion, the big car firms making genuine efforts to increase range must have a positive overall impact on the technology.

Although I'm told the cells being developed for car use demand properties that are not ideal for use in an ebike battery pack.

Every now and again, a research body publishes details of a new battery which looks very promising for ebike use in their laboratory tests.

One of these may reach production, but most are never seen again.

This has happened so often that it's now a standing joke among those of us who follow the technology from our computer screens.

Another factor that limits advances in ebike technology is the market is far too small for anyone to want to throw large amounts of resources at it.


Re: Audax on an ebike
« Reply #46 on: Yesterday at 06:57:04 am »
I would not expect energy capacity of e-bike batteries to increase because current levels are adequate for virtually every user. 

I would expect any improvements in energy density to be used to make smaller batteries.

The number of people wanting to cycle >100km on an e-bike cannot be very big so e-bike manufacturers are never going to focus on this requirement.  I don't expect to ever see an alternative to either carrying multiple batteries or else manually wiring in a larger one. 

Re: Audax on an ebike
« Reply #47 on: Yesterday at 10:01:11 am »
My ARCC equipped bike uses 4Ah/6Ah (Bosch powertool) batteries. The fast charger fully charges these in 35/55 minutes and is lighter than a spare battery.