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first time buyer, short commute, big hills


FlyboyEUC
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Hey guys, I've been riding a single speed bicycle to school/work since the 4th grade. I recently got a job in San Diego and the commute is rough thanks the San Francisco type terrain. I'm talking 22% grade streets. I have been toughing it out for about 2 weeks but I threw out my back the other day while going uphill. Luckily I have been researching these for those 2 weeks. I had originally found the Ninebot S1 but then saw the many other ones out there. Of course I was dazzled by the Z1 but it is probably overkill. I would like to try one of these out as my way to commute to work 3.5 miles. Nicer geared bike are in the same price range as EUCs so I thought I'd try a non sweaty way of getting to work. I have attached pictures of my elevation gain to and from work. I'm used to riding in streets at 14 mph. I'd like some suggestions for wheels that would be fit for my application. Oh and the streets ad cracks and potholes a plenty but I know where they are now. I'm still trying to convince my wife on the safety of these and having just graduated college, these have a hefty price tag. I can take shallower inclines at time but unfortunately live at the bottom of a 17% grade hill as evidenced by the attached graphs and there is no way around it. I'm 145 lbs and pretty comfortable on my feet (prior experience with large segways and usually cruise standing up on my bike). How good are these things going slow down a hill? Any feedback would help.

Ride home elevation.JPG

Ride to work elevation.JPG

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Also, what is the maintenance like for these things. I've pumped my bike tires weekly, get a new chain every 2 or 3 years, and replace inner tubes when i get flats. Other than that, its pretty low key.

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The Ninebot One S1 is quite capable wheel and should be able to handle the 22% grade in your short commute. You didn't mention your budget, but the One Z is supposed to be easier to learn, other wheels from Kingsong,Gotway, InMotion, etc are all very capable. With the wide range of wheels available, you should be able to find the wheel that has the capability, features, and aesthetics that you wanted.

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Any relatively modern wheel will be sufficient for the task. The capabilities in current wheels goes quite a bit beyond the mentioned requirements.

22 hours ago, Flyboy10 said:

Also, what is the maintenance like for these things. I've pumped my bike tires weekly, get a new chain every 2 or 3 years, and replace inner tubes when i get flats. Other than that, its pretty low key.

Recharge and ride. That’s it. A cheap insurance for trouble free riding is to fill the tire with a suitable puncture sealant beforehand.

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You should learn to ride on level ground and become competent before climbing mountains. Having said that, I would skip the ninebots for riding a regular route up/down steep hills, and would wait until the community has fully tested the final version of the Z before spending $2k. My E+ (more power than the S1) is fine for local commuting on flat terrain and gentle slopes, but it's not well suited for steep inclines. Based on @Marty Backe's review videos, Gotway (like the MCM5) may be better for your needs when you are ready.

Edited by litewave
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Kingsong 14D sounds right up your alley. Im in San Diego as well. I’d let you give my 16S a go but it sounds like you don’t know how to ride yet. 

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Thanks everybody for your feedback. My budget is small but after further research i'm thinking that the ones under $600 just might not be as safe. I do like the Z1, but is obviously not here yet, and probably pretty expensive. I have recently been looking at the kingsong 14D @gr8ps, its also good to here that most of these wheels are capable of the hills. Thanks again guys.

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Also any opinions on these two? it seems like the only difference is motor power. The V5F is cheaper. Idk... thoughts?

 

Edited by Flyboy10
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Your situation is very similar to mine! My commute is 3.5 or 4 miles depending on the exact route, but with 500 feet of climb. It's basically up hill, all the way!

Just before starting at this job two years ago, I tried the ride on my mountain bike. I stupidly took Apple Maps recommended car route, thinking that I could handle it. I made it, but not in a state that would be good for a productive morning at work. After a year of driving to work, I bought an e-bike with a 250W pedal assist. I love it, but it's still enough of a workout that I have to shower once I arrive at work. Since having our new baby, 5 months ago, I've been driving again (after a generous 3 months off for paternity leave). Sometimes I want that workout (and my morning schedule will allow for it), but other days not.

I started thinking about an electric kick scooter, and soon realized that I'd need a pretty powerful one (I only weigh ~130lbs, but from what I read the typically scooters really slow down on anything more than slight inclines). That led me to a comment about a Dualtron Ultra, which led me to eWheels and shock at the $3k price tag on such a powerful scooter. Then I noticed that eWheels main stock-in-trade is EUCs, which reminded me that I'd been attracted to them since first seeing videos of the Solo Wheel One.

Jason at eWheels suggested a Glide 3, and I ordered it yesterday. I should receive it on Monday.

I've also ordered wrist, knee and elbow protectors, and a fill face MTB helmet.

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2 hours ago, Flyboy10 said:

Also any opinions on these two? it seems like the only difference is motor power. The V5F is cheaper. Idk... thoughts?

image.png.8dd5c461e345983ea3dd7e321140694e.png

Your ride terrain looks like it requires nothing less than the KS14D or Inmotion Solo Glide 3 (V8) if you want reliable capability and you don't want to take all morning getting to work. If you can find a close out Ninebot One E+, it would be a better low budget choice than the S1. At your weight the VF5 might do the job, but you there is no room for growth if you get the "addiction" and want to expand your euc riding range later.

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Although you are quite light, I’d still be weary of a 500W motor for daily hills. It will be more relaxing to ride if you have more reserve. 14D, 14S, V8 and from there onwards should be a blast. I’d probably check available used wheels as well.

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Since your budget is a little tight, check out used wheels. You’ll drop your wheel and it’s going to get scuffed up. Getting that first scratch on a new wheel is little heartbreaking ?

I learned with the S1, I’ve crashed and dropped that wheel countless time and it’s still going without any broken or cracked parts. This is what made me believe that Ninebot wheels are well engineered. I’ve also tried to make the S1 fail on any steep hills that I could find but somehow it’ll just climb those hills without hesitation.

The S1 finally failed after repeated overheat alarms while I was practicing pendulums. Ninebot/Segway has great customer service, they took my broken S1 and replaced the control board and the motor under warranty. The motor was replaced as a precaution since the windings might have been compromised after repeated overheats. 

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You could get a used wheel first. For your weight, requirements and considering it's the first wheel you don't really need the latest stuff.

Does it rain a lot? Do you sometimes go to work in a hurry? Does safety come first? Do you have to carry the wheel up any stairs/sidewalks? How big are they?

For a commute wheel just get some safer brand so you can cruise without fear or the wheel cutting out. I wouldn't worry so much about range or speed. 

/a

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On 7/28/2018 at 9:25 PM, alcatraz said:

Does it rain a lot? Do you sometimes go to work in a hurry? Does safety come first? Do you have to carry the wheel up any stairs/sidewalks? How big are they?

Never rains in sunny San Diego although the humidity is around 75%. I've given myself half an hour to get to work (currently biking and getting to work a little moist). My wife would say safety is first, I've already broken my arm and needed surgery for falling off my bike (could have bought a couple Z10s with that bill). No stairs, just steep hills 17-22% roughly 100-150 ft hills (see graphs posted earlier). 

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Surprised no one's brought up the Gotway Tesla yet. Pure power, huge battery, and crushes the hills. My last review on it: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cVykFdnUGQA

Here's a video of the Tesla crushing the steepest hill in San Francisco. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=m3i2KrHwfiU

 

Edited by Alien Rides
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29 minutes ago, Alien Rides said:

Surprised no one's brought up the Gotway Tesla yet. Pure power, huge battery, and crushes the hills. My last review on it: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cVykFdnUGQA

Here's a video of the Tesla crushing the steepest hill in San Francisco. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=m3i2KrHwfiU

:confused1:  I agree with everything you say except for the battery part. I guess it's huge relative to circa 2015 wheels :lol:

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Thanks again for the feedback guys. You all have been so helpful. I have one last question. The past 5 years I've ridden my bike ($200 investment) everyday and have only replaced the chain once. How long have you had a EUC? How reliable are they in the long run, like 2+ years? I'm thinking of getting the KS14D.

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On 7/31/2018 at 11:22 PM, Marty Backe said:

:confused1:  I agree with everything you say except for the battery part. I guess it's huge relative to circa 2015 wheels :lol:

Sorry yeah, that wasn't the right word. But plenty big enough for most comfortable commutes ?

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These wheels are very reliable. Avoid jumping off high sidewalks (damage axle/bearings), don't overheat it, and don't let water get into the electrics and you're fine.

The specified range is not good to use completely. Lets say you reckon you want travel around 20km on one charge just cruising around then get a wheel with 40km range. 

As the battery depletes the character of the wheel changes. It starts to sag and limit speed as you go. Reaching 40% it is very obvious and not much fun anymore when you've put a few hundred miles worth of experience.

A small wheel won't see much distance compared to a larger because of it's comfort. Your feet will feel tired faster riding on small tires. 

The specified range is under ideal conditions too. Light rider 65kg, high tire pressure, no wind, and not riding max speed and not many start/stops. Not exactly real world conditions. My inmotion v8 is specified for like 45km on a full charge but I feel it to be quite annoying after 20km, and almost no charge at 25km.

/a

Edited by alcatraz
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I have a used 14D that I'm trying to part ways with, I can ship within the US. I'm 165 LBS and I've done quite a bit of hill climbing and it didn't have any issues at all. Also its already got some scratches on it so it wont hurt your heart as bad when you lay it over for the first time. (it will happen... I took a good spill so I'm getting out from under it). Either way let me know if you end up wanting to go with the 14D. As my first wheel purchase it was more than sufficient in speed and power, I didn't feel like I had instant buyers remorse at all for not buying a more powerful wheel (hitting max speed on it never felt comfortable -- almost 20 mph on one wheel feels wrong at first lol) like everyone says you will with buying a wheel that doesn't go over 15MPH. Just let me know! GL on finding whats right for you.

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10 hours ago, TrevoraNewell said:

I have a used 14D that I'm trying to part ways with, I can ship within the US. I'm 165 LBS and I've done quite a bit of hill climbing and it didn't have any issues at all. Also its already got some scratches on it so it wont hurt your heart as bad when you lay it over for the first time. (it will happen... I took a good spill so I'm getting out from under it). Either way let me know if you end up wanting to go with the 14D.

So you are wanting to sell? What is your price? And did I understand you correctly in that you are selling it because you fell?

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I bought my v8 from someone that had recently fallen too and got some nasty looking road rash. 

He had put 1000km on the machine. I'm at 4300km now.

Wether you will have a bad experience or minor ones lies within your control. Ride defensively all the time and you will be fine. Never get too comfortable and you'll be fine. Understand the limits of the machine and you'll be fine. 

/a

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