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Zulix

First-timer - advise on choosing a a wheel

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Hi, I'm Zulix.

I recently became aware of EUCs after falling down a YouTube rabbit-hole doing research on the OneWheel.  I say "become aware" when I should say "become obsessed."  For months, I've been watching every YouTube vid I can find, reading articles, and I've just found this forum, which seems like it will be a great resource as well.  EUCs seem just better in every way to the OneWheel, except maybe in the initial learning curve learning to ride.  I've decided I'm going to get one.  But at their prices, it's a significant chunk of change for me, so I'm agonizing over getting the right wheel.  

I live in Springfield, Missouri.  There is no EUC community here.  There's not really any PEV's at all in my town.  I think I found an article in my local paper from about a year back about a lady who rides one here, but I've never seen her.  There's one older lady in my neighborhood that rides a hoverboard occasionally to the nearby gas station, but I've never really spoken to her, as she gives off a super-methy aura.  So I've never seen an EUC in person, and sadly have no way to try one to see if I'm going to like it before pulling the trigger on one myself.

So, given that I'll be taking a chance I won't actually enjoy it once I get one, I figure it's best to start small and not go for the top-of-the-line models right away - Limit my loss if I end up not being as into it as it feels like I will be.  I'm 6'0" and weigh about 220lbs.  I fluctuate, but 220lbs is about where I cap out, and I figure it's best to budget for the worst-case.  Most of the less-expensive starter wheels (KS 14D, Inmotion V8) either cannot support my weight, or I'm on the very top end of what they can handle, leaving not enough wiggle room for safety gear and carrying stuff with me (I intend to commute to work and run errands with my wheel, so I wanna leave room in the weight-budget for me to carry maybe 30-40lbs of stuff).  So the lower-end is out, just `cuz I'm a larger guy.  Probably best, because I'd like a wheel with room to grow into if I like the hobby before I have to buy another one.

So I'm mostly eyeing the mid-range wheels, the Inmotion V10F, The King Song 16s, and the Gotway Tesla.  All more than I'd like to spend on an experiment I don't know if I'll love or not, but better than plunking down $2000, then not liking it.  If I like it as much as it seems like I will, I might save up for one of the big fellas.

I've learned that KingSong throttles your speed with a whole half of your battery remaining, and I don't like the vocal warnings KS wheels give.  I'd rather beeps, or better yet, sounds I could set up myself.  And throttling at 50% seems way way too early.  I understand it's for safety reasons, but I'd rather the wheel stay at peak performance as long as it can.  The KS wheels all seem the strongest on paper, but those two items turn me off to the whole brand.  Inmotion, very few people talk about.  The community, at least on YouTube, seems to favor KingSong and Gotway.  So Gotway seems best to me. 

I'm leaning towards the Tesla v2.  It has the most weight support in its price range, decent range and speed, what looks like Gotway's only tolerable trolley handle.

What do you guys think?

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You've done your homework and only you can make the decision on how much to spend. It seems you've made a good choice for the price and capabilities you need. Have you looked at the used market?? Some are not open to buying used equipment due to the mystery factor. It is a personal choice.

It sounds as if you are not sure you will like riding EUC's, or at least leaving room for the possibility you may not take to it. You can sell if it does not work out and recover some of your money, maybe most of it.

In many ways we are in the same boat. We are on the larger side and that reduces our choices and options. Neither of us have access to anyone that we could talk to and maybe have them help us test the water. We live in areas where there are very few if anyone riding. But you've watched the videos and used your imagination. If you've done all that, it seems you are committed. And as you have read here and seen on the videos, it will take a big commitment to learn to ride. The reward is a lot of good clean fun.

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2 hours ago, Scottie said:

It sounds as if you are not sure you will like riding EUC's, or at least leaving room for the possibility you may not take to it.

I think the chances I won't like it are slim to none, really. It looks so fun. But since I've no way to try one, I have to admit it's possible.

 

3 hours ago, Scottie said:

Have you looked at the used market?? Some are not open to buying used equipment due to the mystery factor

I'm not opposed to it at all, especially for my first wheel, but I couldn't find anything on Craigslist anywhere near my area, and didn't see any posts on this forums selling section near me. I don't think Missouri has really discovered these yet.

Maybe I'll start something

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36 minutes ago, Zulix said:

Maybe I'll start something

I hear that! Once the others see you having fun, who knows. Do you have any friends that might want to risk EUC addiction?

The guys I know are on the older side and are very conservative. I'm sure a few of them would have jumped at it in their youth though. So for me, it is hard to recruit riding buddies. But I was lucky enough to meet up with another older crazy guy like me. I never saw the young cat again, that whizzed by me on a larger EUC while I was bike riding. As far as I can tell, it is just the two of us around here.

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Posted (edited)
1 hour ago, Zulix said:

I think the chances I won't like it are slim to none, really. It looks so fun. But since I've no way to try one, I have to admit it's possible.

It is possible, at least @Jason McNeil has mentioned that he has had one return in the past, where the buyer told him that he just couldn't learn it, after a long time of trying. But, I'd claim that vast majority of people who stick with it will learn it eventually, and enjoy it (although to be fair, those who don't likely won't come to the forums to tell that, but still I'd say pretty much any person in the world capable of riding a bicycle will learn it if they really want to). The initial learning before things "click" varies wildly, from days to months before being ready to ride in the "general public", of course the only judge of that is the rider him/herself, as there's no license or such required anywhere as far as I know. Just getting going without any support might take a while (I didn't have anything to lean on when starting on the street, don't know if that made things quicker or not... I had to jump on and off the wheel for a good 30 minutes or so, sweating like a pig, before I could get even my first couple of feet with both of my feet on the pedals...). Some people with "manual" unicycle -experience might pick it up in minutes. ;)  Apart from the learning curve, I find it highly unlikely someone who does all the "work" of learning about the wheels themselves before getting one wouldn't like it. Who'd even spend all that time trying to learn (+ money to buy) and then realize it's not something they actually wanted? But, I guess (I don't remember anymore, and was "lucky" to learn fairly quick) the learning curve in the beginning can be depressing if you feel you're not progressing (but even that's likely temporary, a week later from feeling like you're not "getting" it or progressing, you' could be riding without issue).

There's a huge amount of information, tutorials, reviews, general chatter, moral support etc. etc. in these forums, so much that I've actually more or less given up trying to stay on top of things a few years back... :rolleyes:  Look around, you'll learn things the videos never show or tell you  :P  And most of all, welcome to the forums and enjoy, it's going to be heck of a ride  ;) 

 

Edited by esaj

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The best way to learn is with somebody else. Which is shall we say, difficult, to pull off right now.

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Quote

"become obsessed."  For months, I've been watching every YouTube vid I can find, reading articles,

This is as clear of a sign for a successful beginning as there can be. I think that only if the idea of riding the EUC would sound alien to you, would there be any real possibility for the hobby not to stick. But the Tesla is already a wheel one could well be happy with for months, even years. So it does sound like a good choice for you, although the general trend has lately been navigating towards wider 3.0” tires. Maybe also check for a 2nd hand Nikola at the forum, eBay etc?

Quote

I've learned that KingSong throttles your speed with a whole half of your battery remaining, and I don't like the vocal warnings KS wheels give.

The warnings on KS can be changed to play beeps only. And the throttling threshold varies for each model. The older 2000W 18XL only throttles at 25, or was it 30%.

Quote

The KS wheels all seem the strongest on paper

The power ratings must be taken with a huge grain of salt, for every manufacturer. Announcing the inherently varying amount of power with just a single number is just not precise enough. So a 2200W wheel is not at all necessarily more powerful than a 2000W wheel.

 Welcome to the funnest hobby there is!

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Posted (edited)
21 minutes ago, mrelwood said:

The power ratings must be taken with a huge grain of salt, for every manufacturer. Announcing the inherently varying amount of power with just a single number is just not precise enough. So a 2200W wheel is not at all necessarily more powerful than a 2000W wheel.

Don't know for sure, but I think the nominal numbers are more like "this is the average power the motor manufacturer has calculated that the motor should withstand in normal conditions constantly (like infinitely) without burning", and even then they're of course highly likely rounded. I'd imagine a western manufacturer would downplay the numbers and use conservative values so that customers couldn't claim warranty for cases where the motor was burned by overpowering it constantly, but for other (read: Chinese) manufacturers, it might be "better" to overestimate it.

Nevertheless, the peak powers during extreme situations can be multiples of these, whereas riding on a flat surface at a steady speed requires very little power (a few hundred watts, or roll down even slightly declining road, and you could see close to 0W, or slightly negative power when the motor is actually braking a little to keep you balanced). Most of the time you aren't really using that much power. More likely the batteries will be the limiting factor, rather than whether the motor can take it. I'd assume it'd take a good while before the motor actually got damaged (read: overheat, melt the lacquering around the coils and short circuit it, at least I can't think of another way to destroy this kind of motor with plain current, not voltage) through overpowering, people have done long hill climbing tests and such, and if something blows, it's usually the mainboard MOSFETs, long before the motor. Or overleaning and ending up on their face, but with the amount of power the current wheels have, I'd think you'd really have to try that on purpose and hard, and going fast enough to overcome the battery voltage is a whole another issue (who's crazy enough to try that with these speeds)...

The difference between 2000 and 2200W, in my opinion, is just marketing ;) 

Edited by esaj
Whoops, "break" vs "brake" ;)

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13 minutes ago, esaj said:

The difference between 2000 and 2200W, in my opinion, is just marketing ;) 

I view this more as different construction or focus, not as much as 10% extra power.

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Hi Zulix, I'm like you. I turned 60 and got infected by the EUC bug, I have my eye on a Gotway MSX pro.

Patiently waiting for it to become available, meanwhile watching all the tutorials I could get my hands on

you tube. I have been shopping for protective stuff too, getting ready for the big day! Reading all the good advice on

this forum.

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1 hour ago, mrelwood said:

 

This is as clear of a sign for a successful beginning as there can be. I think that only if the idea of riding the EUC would sound alien to you, would there be any real possibility for the hobby not to stick.

Yeah, I'm pretty sure I'll enjoy it, which is why I'm willing to take the plunge. I probably should get one of the higher end wheels right off, but I figure I'll want a second eventually, for teaching and to shake things up, so might as well bang up my eventual backup learning, and get the good one once I know I can handle it.

 

1 hour ago, mrelwood said:

The warnings on KS can be changed to play beeps only. And the throttling threshold varies for each model. The older 2000W 18XL only throttles at 25, or was it 30%.

See, 25 or 30 is not bad at all. They have to have some kind of measures in place to keep you from riding them to zero and injuring yourself. I thought they were all throttled at 50% just by rote, and that seemed silly. Maybe I will consider a kingsong then. 

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Posted (edited)

Mine throttles from 30mph to 26mph(maybe 27idr) at around 25% battery. I am on an 'outdated' ks18L tho. I study my telemetry after rides and I dont ever manage to get warnings until I'm at 5% battery or lower. I think it varies by wheel, but most all of these bigger wheels are plenty enough to learn on and enjoy for many many miles. I usually just travel a highway and maintain 20-30mph for the trip. I went to town today and it's definitely a different set of requirements. IN town, the power of an 18L is way more than enough. On highways its enough power but not enough speed. On mountainous roads, Im finding I lose traction going up hills, before I run out of power.  Basically, even the now dated and underspec'd 18L is a VERY viable form of euc travel. I dont think youll find the newer euc's lacking, as the specs Im pretty happy with, are now mediocre. Buy once, cry once....get the disease and start collecting. It seems stupid, but a good trolley is amazing. Before I got an euc, i had no idea how akward to carry, they ALL are.

Edited by ShanesPlanet

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