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Stillhart

Nikola Wobbles?

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Hi all,

So in the latest eVX video, Mickey says that the Nikola gets high speed wobbles because of its size and design, then offers some suggestions on how to overcome it with riding position.  I have been having a lot of trouble getting my Nik up to speed because I get wobbles at around 18-19mph reliably.  For weeks I've been thinking it's just me and I need to build more muscles and "git gud".  Now I'm wondering how much of it is the machine and I'm starting to second-guess my purchase. 

Would I have the same problems on a different wheel?  If so, would they at least be less pronounced?  I realize that obviously it's mostly just me since plenty of other people can get over 20mph on the Nik without complaint.  But I also feel like one of the reasons I got the Nik is the "safety margin" of a faster Gotway wheel and I don't feel safe when I start wobbling at 20mph.  I'd rather have a more stable wheel that's easier to learn on so I can build up those muscles without feeling like I'm going to eat pavement if I accidentally have too much fun.

Since I'm asking this in the Gotway section, I'll focus my question: 

1 - Is it true that Nikola wobbles are a known thing or am I making too much out of an offhand comment?

2 - Would a wheel known for being more stable (like a MSX or an 18XL) suit me better and help me learn with less stress or will I have the same problems on any wheel?

To be clear, I learned on a Ninebot One E+ and rode that to tiltback constantly with no issues, which is why I decided to upgrade.  I feel mush less comfortable on the Nik than I did on the Ninebot.

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Posted (edited)

I think it's mostly rider. I had a bad time with wobbles on the MCM5 until I got used to it.  Just got the Nikola and yeah I got wobbles on my first higher speed run.  I assume it's the same deal, stability will come with time.  Wobbles is the delayed reaction between man and machine.  Your feet have to learn to anticipate what's happening down there ... it's more unconscious than conscious kinda, give it time.

What I got from his video was the main concern about wobbles was high speed braking (different wobble than above).  I think that has more to do with loading the weight behind the wheel (any wheel really) during braking.  It turns into a shopping cart wheel with the wheel out front.  The wheel wants to turn.  By turning slightly during hard braking, you'll avoid wobble by pinning the wheel to one direction, is what I got from evX's video.

Edited by xorbe
typo

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when you encounter side-to-side wobbles you are putting to match pressure on front of your pedals....
be more relaxed and try move your feet further back or ride your wheel offset on pedals

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Posted (edited)

Offsetting balance helps me. It kind of feels like I'm mashing down on one heel a little but still pushing forward with the other foot. I also do a little carving. I think its like @xorbe mentioned. Wobbles are your late or overreaction to the wheel imbalances and surface irregularities. I think it may even happen on a level that takes less time to happen, than we can think about. So either we anticipate it (by the 4th wiggle in a wobble, you kind of know what its going to do on #5), or we learn to ride and muscle muscle memory takes over. Maybe its not muscle memory, but I do think that we learn to cope with it on a subconscious level. Even the 'stable' wheels you speak of, wobble with the wrong rider. At times, I am just that guy too. Typically at 20mph+ speed wobbles, I gently slow down, pick (and maintain) a direction to lean a tiny bit into . I am pretty sure I gently slow down and lean towards my trailing foot on its heel. At sustained speeds, I find myself standing offset a little more and using body twist. Evx has some really good tips and knows his shit. Be sure to catch the one he has of advanced rider techniques too. fwiw, my mten even had a wobble pretty badly. IN the end, it stopped doing it, as the cause (the rider) just rode many more miles and it started going away. Mten wobbles were are at 8-10mph.:lol: Dont second guess yourself already, as 'the grass is greener' may start to apply on accident.

Edited by ShanesPlanet

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Posted (edited)

i had the nikola 2100 with the huge battery on top... zero wobbles at any speed, in fact it was extremely stable... because of its shape? its shape is very aerodynamic if anything, not that this makes a difference at these measly speeds lol, i have never once felt any wobble on a wheel unless it had a very poorly seated tire or it was way too overinflated.. the 84V 2400 monster has an additional 800 wh battery on one side and it doesnt wobble whatsoever, its all in the rider... you need to strengthen those particular leg muscles, adjust your feet and relax.. youre probably just going too fast, you came from a puny little wheel with a puny tire, and youre moving up to the second or third largest euc there is, with a super fat tire theres going to be an adjustment period :P yes you would absolutely have the same problem on another (bigger) wheel, its not the wheel... until you become a seasoned rider with lots of experience on different wheels of varying sizes there will always be a longer adjustment period for that particular wheel because they all have different centres of gravity, weights, sizes, tires, pressure points and each will put different stresses on different muscles

Edited by Rywokast

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Posted (edited)

@Stillhart I’m disappointed to hear your not having fun on your Nikola. As you know , I got a Nikola Plus around the same time as you. I now have over 200 miles on it. Being a new rider (started in February) and coming from a 18XL,I have learned a couple things that hopefully will give you more confidence when riding your Nik. I will say I have enjoyed the Nikola from the start. I felt like I was in sync with it right away but there were issues. Like @Rywokast said, the Nikola is a big wheel. It makes my 18XL feel small. 

From me, the Nikola is sensitive to foot position and tire pressure. I was initially running 40 psi when I first got it, similar to the 18XL. It felt like a beach ball. Lots of bounce. I asked @Mike Sacristan about tire pressure for my weight(205 lbs) and the Nikola   He said around 35psi be a good start. I settled at 36psi. Much smoother ride , very little bounce and stable. I believe in EVx ‘s video he said 35 psi was the number for his weight (175 in think). Initially, I had my feet to far forward. This would cause wobbles on both the Nikola and 18XL( the Mten3 too). I would suggest you be very precise when putting your dominant foot on the pedal. Experiment, you will find a sweet spot. I ride my non dominant foot (left) with my toes lined up with the edge of the pedal, so an offset stance.

On both the Nikola and 18XL I get brake wobbles when braking hard  I just squeeze the wheel and twist a little  Like @ShanesPlanet says, you just anticipate it  and relax. Even though all the wheels are ridden with same basic technique, they have different handling characteristics which takes time to become comfortable with.i suggest you find a place with no distractions ( people cars etc) and practice acceleration and braking with various foot positions and see if you can get more comfortable with the Nikola .

 

Edited by bigwave

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46 minutes ago, bigwave said:

@Stillhart I’m disappointed to hear your not having fun on your Nikola. As you know , I got a Nikola Plus around the same time as you. I now have over 200 miles on it. Being a new rider (started in February) and coming from a 18XL,I have learned a couple things that hopefully will give you more confidence when riding your Nik. I will say I have enjoyed the Nikola from the start. I felt like I was in sync with it right away but there were issues. Like @Rywokast said, the Nikola is a big wheel. It makes my 18XL feel small. 

From me, the Nikola is sensitive to foot position and tire pressure. I was initially running 40 psi when I first got it, similar to the 18XL. It felt like a beach ball. Lots of bounce. I asked @Mike Sacristan about tire pressure for my weight(205 lbs) and the Nikola   He said around 35psi be a good start. I settled at 36psi. Much smoother ride , very little bounce and stable. I believe in EVx ‘s video he said 35 psi was the number for his weight (175 in think). Initially, I had my feet to far forward. This would cause wobbles on both the Nikola and 18XL( the Mten3 too). I would suggest you be very precise when putting your dominant foot on the pedal. Experiment, you will find a sweet spot. I ride my non dominant foot (left) with my toes lined up with the edge of the pedal, so an offset stance.

On both the Nikola and 18XL I get brake wobbles when braking hard  I just squeeze the wheel and twist a little  Like @ShanesPlanet says, you just anticipate it  and relax. Even though all the wheels are ridden with same basic technique, they have different handling characteristics which takes time to become comfortable with.i suggest you find a place with no distractions ( people cars etc) and practice acceleration and braking with various foot positions and see if you can get more comfortable with the Nikola .

 

Wobble wobble! I also came from a Ninebot One E+. I had to relearn to ride but before that I had to unlearn to ride which made it even more demanding.

Haha yeah funny how Mickey is running that high PSI and then pointing out wobbles. At his weight and that PSI it would be interesting to see the contact patch he is riding on. We can just ride in a puddle and then on dry asphalt and see. 1cm maybe? Nice use of a 3 inch tyre lol.

The first time I was on a Nik+ (3 battery packs) was last year. I got it to 50kmh on my first try. I then got some terrible wind and got wobbles while holding my GoPro which acted like a sail and also my own noobiness on that wheel. On the way back I hit 59.5kmh on a bike path with a slight incline.

I once got wobbles on the 1800Wh Nik+ also because of high PSI and bad asphalt.

But... let's go back in time a bit.. to when I was riding my MSX with a speed alarm set at 35 kmh. EVERY TIME I passed 35 kmh I would get speed wobbles lol.

Yesterday I got a speed wobble on the 16X at 45 kmh because I put most of my weight on my right leg so I could adjust my right foot. I probably won't be doing that again.

Anyway... @Stillhart remember this thread in a few months.. when all your wobbles are gone. Wobble is a skill issue and it takes time and practice to develop skill.

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Posted (edited)

Thanks for the tips, everyone.  I'll keep at it and experiment with foot placement a little more.  I've tried riding more offset like evX suggests and it doesn't feel very good for me.  I have been having some success with the UStride heel-up riding style, and combining them feels a little weird.

@Mike Sacristan what PSI would you suggest?  I'm about the same weight as evX and was going to try 35 psi next (recommended both by him and by ewheels website) but if you think lower is better, I'd definitely try that as well.

evX also swears by soft mode, but I feel MUCH more in control in medium or hard mode.  The wobbles in soft mode are much more extreme and find that medium is a good balance for me between the feel of soft and control of hard.  My point being that not all his advice works for me right now lol.

Anyways, if it's not the wheel and it's definitely me, I'll just keep at it.

Edited by Stillhart

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Well I'm throwing spaghetti and the wall and something is sticking because I got a little faster today (up to 20.8mph) and I felt more confident at higher speeds.  I even rode the wobbles for a bit at one point without immediately slowing down.  (I know that part at least comes from having it set to Hard mode, since the wobbles feel much more controllable in that mode in general.) 

Some things I tried:  psi down to 25, riding mode back to Hard from Medium, trying to put my weight forward without lifting my heels.

One other thing I tried, which I think helped a lot:  I rode somewhere new and there were lots of people around.  I was focused a lot more on my surroundings and foot traffic on the path than I was foot positioning and whatnot.  I basically stopped trying so hard and just rode and took in the sights.  I think that helped a lot.  lol

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Posted (edited)

You're getting it for sure!  One thing I noticed over a few miles of getting better, I was able to maintain same speeds and accelerate as easily without my heels up. I remember my first trip to the gas station maintaining near tiltback, and I was on my toes and ALMOST to fall off the front. A couple small bumps and I almost shit myself as I was on that razor edge on my toes. Without explanation, my second trip a week later, and I was NOT riding with heels up, maintaining same speeds and had a tiny bit more of my balance away from an inevitable nose dive. I ride in hard more too. I'll tell you this, when you pull out onto a 2 lane highway in town with 45mph traffic, you somehow learn to hit tiltback before you even realize it. Something to be said about focusing on hazards and not your wheel,  gives a little more incentive to do it right. Grats on the progress! Having made it this far, I'd bet your comfort will come at an exponential rate now.

Edited by ShanesPlanet

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Well, for what it's worth, I broke 21mph today and rode through a few wobbles with little drama.  My legs are still sore from the "long" (for me) ride yesterday and so I didn't make it too far today but it felt good.

One thing I realized today:  yesterday I rode in a new area and attributed a lot of progress to that.  Today I rode in a usual area and realized the bike trail is horrible.  It's super bumpy and cracked and I felt every single bump thanks to my sore legs; that wore me out much faster than riding smooth trails/roads.  At least it felt more planted on the bumps thanks to the lowered psi.  But man, once I got to a smooth area and I could just relax and open 'er up, that's when I hit my top speed.  lol

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Definitely stick with the nik. I got mine a little over a month ago and must admit it threw me for a loop but i had some great advice and stuck with it... of all my wheels it the one that i have grown to love most from genuinely not feeling it at all bordering on it scaring the sh1t out of me on the first few days. Its a wheel you need to make adjustments for and experiment. Stagger your feet like many have said but try different amounts what works for one doesnt for another. Without realising i started to engage a very slight turn/carve during heavy braking. Grip the wheel more during the brake carve and sit in to the braje lowering your C/O/G. If you do get big wobbles much like a tractor/poorly weighted vehicle you can often release the brake and give a touch of acceleration to instantly calm the wheel(this where possible is better than the high speed crash alternative) with more miles and muscle memory the wobble will just magically vanish. 

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layout-2020-5-23-1

The user's own style of handling the electric wheel is different. Last year I tested Nicola Plus 100v. We did hill testing and high-speed testing, but Wavel didn't come. In a way, it's a difference of skill. 

 

"There is no correct answer.".:efee47c9c8:

 

Nicola's appearance is round and thick. It also weighs, and Nicola's gyro style is lower than Z10's hard gyro style.

I think there are many users who feel wobble because KS-16X, Nikola, and electric wheel similar to Z10 have strong straight forwardness.

As mentioned above, it is a difference in user proficiency, and in my case, I don't put my knees on the electric wheel while driving to get rid of the wavel, and I dribble as if I were touching the electric wheel. In addition, the more straightforward the electric wheel is, the more you need to find the right way to drive.:cheers:

Edited by Lindsey

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