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Sooo @cloudust beat me to the punch in posting my initial impressions YouTube vid on the forums here.... the Ninebot Z thirst is real! ? LOL First, as much as I always dole praise on @Jason McNeil of eWheels.com, I must do so again: Thank God we have you in the US as our local PEV dealer and thank you for so graciously agreeing to ship this demo Ninebot Z unit on a 4-city US tour to your loyal fan customer base. Call me biased, yes, but I cannot help it: I've been screwed over by enough Joe Schmo middle man EUC sellers and cold-shoulder-go-to-your-distributor EUC co's to know not to take YOU for granted (and for those who don't know, one of my long-drawn ordeals is what led me to Jason in the first place, helping me on a wheel issue where the wheel was never purchased from Jason/eWheels). I will post as much nuanced content as I can on the Z to this thread throughout the week we have the Z here in NYC, complete with my incoherent ramblings and self-manufactured terminologies! (not joking, they really could be incoherent, I'm running on 2-3 hours sleep, neglecting my day job as we speak, each day we have this wheel... ?) Catching everyone up to speed, I'm on Day 3 (approx. 50 miles in) of extensive daily city riding with the eWheels.com demo Z10 (trying to shake off the initial euphoria, as is the case with all new wheels). And please remember to keep in mind, these are my rider biases (if you don't know of me or can't read my signature on mobile): I ❤️ big & wide wheels. Bigger & wider the better! (err, maybe not as big as that DIY 26" KS18 of past cult fame) That said, I've owned (not simply tested) almost every size, shape, and major manufacturer EUC model now (see my sig), and that's on purpose, because you'll never truly know a wheel without putting in the mileage, all models are slightly-to-drastically different. I ride daily, rain or shine. My only walking comes in the form of running 3-10 miles a day. I'm not a hill or offroad guy. I live in the capitol of Flatland City, Urban America, New York fudgin' City. Besides, @Marty Backe does a fantastic job with that on his socials. You might have read, but I have weird theories on riding on every nook and cranny of my pedals with my feet (wide, offset, edges, tip-toes) or my butt (seated, yeah!) except the standard set-it-and-forget-it parallel 11's foot positioning. I want every bit of leverage and angle of bending / carving I can get out of every wheel I ride dammit! (I also realize this is not the case with most riders on this forum.) I am not the riskiest of risk-taking risky top speed EUC riders. Yes, I do occasionally hit 30mph maxes, but the stars and the moons have to align. My average speed in this city carving stop-and-go car traffic is ~26mph, 28-30mph for passing car speed. I am 175 lbs rider weight (working on getting that back to 165 lbs *smh), so probably just a smidge under 190 lbs with backpack weight. Now,.... Let's tackle some of the heavy-hitters right off the bat, shall we? Because that's really what everyone's itching to [somewhat] resolve/inform, right? (again, all my own opinions, feel free to agree with nothing I say because I have no clue what I'm talking about ??) ===================================== PART I The Main Attraction: 4.1" Wide 18" Ninebot-branded CST Tubeless Tire Shock Absorbing? Unfortunately, not as I would have hoped ?, especially being in a pothole-infested city like NYC. It's not terrible though, and being super wide at 4.1", as long as you're not hitting the kind of bumps that make you catch small air, the overall massive dense weight of the Z10 (more on that later) will plant you to the ground in a very stable manor. Any hint of air you catch though, is met with a very solid thud (no bounce back) that if you don't cushion with your knees can reverberate up your being. Letting out some of the air did help, and as we test ride more, I will possibly try deflating a bit more to see if this gains more absorption/bounce (no, I did not measure PSI, but it felt very much like the max rated 32 or higher out of the box). My theory: the culprit here is the tire composition (yes, those who know me, know I champion this subject). Being tubeless with thick consistency (not sure how much ratio of rubber there is in there), I think it's very reminiscent of how e-kick scooter folk hate solid rubber tires for the same lack of absorption you usually get with a pneumatic air tire, especially in the absence of proper suspension. Maneuverability? This is always tricky, because my comfort with turning / carving bigger wheels is not necessarily your comfort with turning / carving bigger wheels (if you even want to take an effort to [learn] doing so). As with all bigger diameter wheels in the 18"+ tire category, the common refrain is "use more upper body to turn". Well, considering the Z10 sports now a 4.1" wide, at least ~50% wider than most EUC tires made today (Even the 2.75" wide 22" Monster tire!), you might need more than just the usual increased upper body / hip twists to achieve deep carves (obviously, body dimension/physics dependent). For me, my feet are constantly moving and pivoting, sometimes hanging off the pedal at non-traditional angles, so I can achieve deep carves on the Z quite satisfactorily (yes, albeit with more body movement). But I can see how set-it-and-forget-it, close to the shell, parallel 11 feet, "I want the wheel to turn by itself" guys will say it's less maneuverable than smaller diameter wheels. The dense 55 lb wheel weight & short stubby OG Ninebot pedals also compound this I suspect. Stability? This is where the Z10 surprised me, and in a good way, the best way! (though we heard brief early reports of this quality in passing) Quite logically, the Z10 having a wider tire, though being slightly curved and not flat (like the OneWheel tire or a car tire) gives you a wider base, which equals more stability and more distance traveled falling one direction before rider-correcting to the opposite direction. Combined with the greater mass density, which contributes to a slower initial momentum, you can really (with proper technique) control this wheel at slower speeds to the point of crawling next to pedestrians, and switching pivot axis really quickly. While in motion, the wide combined with the mass equates into hugging the road over small bumps better, only catching air for the more jagged and bigger divots (though again, the dense rubber tire composition does not absorb shocks). Think of a boulder chasing Indiana Jones or something similar (am I dating myself? Lol) Acceleration / Braking Acceleration With the Z10, Ninebot has re-introduced hardness pedal sensitivity settings again from the One 16" series days ( @Tishawn Fahie had reminded me that they had removed this for the 14" S2/S1/A1 series for some unknown reason). This time, the settings are only from 0 to 4 (as opposed to I think the 16" series was 0-10), with 0 again being the hardest response. Unfortunately, this is not the top tier stiffness/hardness of a 0-setting 16" One or 14" S2, but I would equate the 0-setting Z10 to around slightly less hard a response than a sport-mode Gotway Tesla, and comparable or slightly harder than my Ride-Mode KS18S (was that the name of the hardest KS setting? haven't opened up my crappy KS app in ages Lol - still don't want to!). However, due to the mass, to really initiate from-rest acceleration, especially uphill, you need to swing more weight force into the Z10 pedals, almost reminiscent to the way you need to really swing the sport-mode MSuperV3 pedals to initiate acceleration from rest (albeit, with more resistance to the Z, not in that glidy, floaty, effortless Gotway thing the MSuperV3 & Monster motor do). In other words, the power and acceleration in the ballpark of other 2kW nominal motor models IS there (just below the 84V Gotways), but you have to work / lean for it more. Also, interestingly, though it takes time for me to gain trust with any new wheel, so far I was not able to overcurrent/overcharge (ie. fast acceleration uphill) the Z10, whereas I was able to do so on the V10F. Braking I think the Z10 is the first EUC where you can specifically select the braking behavior, called "Assisted-braking" in the app (see my Z10 Initial Impressions YouTube below). It's just a toggle between enabled and disabled. When enabled, leaning back to brake will have little tension, more swing. I guess this supposedly "assists" your braking, but I was never a fan of that feel (see MSuperV3, reportedly SoloWheel does/did this too), so I've been constantly toggling that feature off (the demo Z10 keeps forgetting just this one particular setting for some reason; they might have fixed this in the updated FW that the NB app keeps prompting me to update too, but I have bad memories of Ninebot One 16" Firmware-gate: Faceplanting of the Ninebots a couple(?) of years back, so we'll just keep ignoring that FW prompt, thank you very much!). So with the braking 'assist' turned off, braking is sufficiently hard IMHO, and every NYC rider who's been on the Z10 so far has agreed with me, FWIW. Heaviness I brought this up at the end of my Z10 Initial Impressions vid, but the Z10 has to be (might be wrong) the heaviest 18" EUC at ~55 lbs, and not packing a very efficient battery-to-wheel weight-ratio, as my KS18S with an extra 680Wh more battery is 4 lbs lighter. This heaviness factor is both a minus (obvious lifting implications) and plus (the aforementioned grounded/planted-ness for bumps) IMHO. Walk-up apartment residents and high heighted car trunk owners beware! Not really sure why this is, but my guess is the tubeless tire & motor weight (could be wrong). Alright, gonna part-by-part more impressions/observations + video content progressively on this thread, as this short analysis got dense real quick! If you stuck by this long, your Ninebot Z thirst is strong!
For anyone interested in the product line brochure Segway Ninebot had available at CES 2018..... Some interesting tidbits: by the language, seems Segway is marketing the Z as an "enthusiast" model, ie. not the bread-and-butter money-maker many on the forums seem to want this model to be. the Ninebot One 16" series is notably absent from the product line, so I'm guessing that has been officially end-of-life'd. not surprisingly, as evidenced by the ordering of their product line, Segway is focusing more on their new cheapo e-kickboard scooters and 2-wheeled Mini series Segway Ninebot CES 2018 Product Brochure (PDF)
ninebot One Z NYC Demo Group Ride [RESCHEDULED] (sponsored by eWheels.com) Sunday June 10 12PM **Please note change in Meet Location:Ellington in the Park (UWS)W 105th St Riverside Drhttps://www.yelp.com/biz/ellington-in-the-park-new-york-2RAINOUT DATE: Monday, June 11, 6PM, same location FB RSVP: https://www.facebook.com/events/177198386272087