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My s18 arrived yesterday! Impressions and suspension question.


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Removing the large washers is the #1 thing to do. Do not put anything on their place, just assemble the system back up without the washers.

 If you (deflate and) remove the bottom attachment of the shock, you’ll get a good idea about how the mechanism moves up and down on it’s own. If you are in doubt whether more work would be warranted, make us a video about moving the mechanism end to end (with the shock detached) and we’ll be able to estimate better.

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If nothing else oil the sliders. They tend to arrive dry. A quick wipe down and spray of oil every 100 miles make a world of difference. 

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Posted (edited)

I'm also just about 1 week into my S18! Here are some thoughts, and I also have a new batch wheel.

Coming from a KS18L, I expected this wheel to feel very similar (similar battery, similar wheel size, similar motor power, different center of gravity) just plusher. Boy was I wrong! The entire wheel steers so differently. The KS18L would actively lean in turns, this one simply doesn't - it's like you have to steer it like a motorcycle, where you twist it into a turn and it ends up falling in a little but not a lot. I also had a v8 a long time ago and the KS18L and the V8 felt similar but this is very different! So it's not just a bigger wheel issue :-) Go slow and get used to it.

I finally got the washers off the central link yesterday, delayed because I had to get some stubby hex keys (you don't _need_ stubby hex wrenches but it really does help) and that bolt was just barely tightened, which is a good thing. I have not tried a before-after with the washer off (this weekend), but given the bolt is barely tight, the big washer is really just acting like a dust seal, and that doesn't seem like a bad thing. The bearings inside seemed nicely made. I might consider replacing that washer with a delrin washer, but I decided for now to keep it on. I've added a picture although since I didn't disassemble it's not showing much.

"oil all the things", ok. What kind of oil? I have some white silicon spray lube for motorcycle chains, that might seem appropriate. The things being "the sliders", OK.

I am very much thinking of replacing the shock itself. I see another thread talking about the Monarch RT3. There seem to be no great videos of "before and after", so I'm going by gut.... There's a statement of "have to buy new bushings" but I've got few leads on exactly what bushings are required (it's something about the 0.9mm difference in hole size?), but a disassemble and measure should tell me the answers (I think that's what everyone else did :-) ) Ah, in the mean time I see a response to fit the Fox Float Factory DPX2 2021
7.875x2.25 3 Position. Hopefully it is the right thing and will go on well.

But I still will oil everything first. Will post video without shock.

Having actually seen the shock in action, I see this actually is not a great design. By having the shock at such an angle from the direction of travel, there's a lot of friction loss, even with all the bearings, which is why the focus on fine tuning those points. Maybe the V11 design is better, even if it seems more fragile. Anyway there is absolutely no comparison between this and the KS18L, this is a much more pleasant AND SAFER wheel because it stays on the pavement, it's a keeper for me.

PXL_20210708_225920220.jpg

Edited by bbulkow
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It is definitely different than the 18L/18XL. You get used to it. You are likely adding the new ride style limitations of the S18 while not yet removing the 18L limitations that you are used to. 
After getting my S18 I become obsessed with speed bumps. :w00t2: 

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Yes, I am not finding it hard to get used to. We have mostly large speed bumps where I live (not the short sharp mean ones) and they have cuts for bicyclists but now I ride the bump :-). I have found one short mean bump near my house, but also am making a catalogue of large potholes :-)

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The difference in turning comes mainly from the tire width. The 18L is 18X2.5”, so it has a pretty similar ratio to the V8’s tire. The S18 being a 18x3.0” changes things considerably.

 The bearings under the large washers don’t need an additional dust seal in the form of the washer. (Similar bearings are used in the motor where they live under a layer of mud. No issues.) The bolt really should only touch the inside section of the bearing, otherwise there’s not much point to have a bearing in there in the first place.

 An easy test is to remove the bottom attachment of the shock and move the system up and down. Then oil everything, and try again. You can then add the washers and test again whether they hinder the mechanism or not.

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I'm in exactly the same position as the OP. Got my S18 a couple of days ago and the weather packed in. Past the 10km mark but doing a lot of reading in the mean time. 

Those 10km have felt very strange coming from a 14D! I too have felt like a noob with minimal control. And the thing is so damn big! I can't quite seem to get my foot position right either; my feet feel uneven when they're not and I feel like the width of the body pushes my feet out off the edges. However, every km I ride feels a little better so I know I will get used to it. 

No idea how the suspension should feel so for now I'm just focussing on getting the feel of the thing. I don't think I'd recognise adjustments that well until I have got used to the overall feel. Wind is a bit less today so it's time for a few more k's. 

Edit to add: no scratches on mine yet though. I'm geared up and so is the wheel. Can't learn a new toy without a bodyguard on to keep it looking pretty! I also quite like the way it handles turns, oddly enough 

Edited by Ek.
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I've done a few more miles on the S18 and noticed a rubbing noise. The tire seems to be rubbing against the fender. It's not constant but it's annoying. It also happens when I hit speed bumps. And also, I feel like the wheel tends to lean on my left leg. I don't know if it is because I am not yet used to it or because the tire is misaligned.

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My suspension after disconnecting the air shock was not smooth. When I picked up the wheel, the suspension would not fully extend by the wheels' own weight. :(

 

Here's how I fixed: I added dry lubricant (with Teflon) to everything. Added it to battery sliders, 4 black slider tubes, and steering linkage joints. The one that made the most difference was the 4 black slider tubes.

My suspension now fully extends by the wheels own weight, with or without the air shock installed.

Hope this helps!

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Alex, I think it's probably important to disassemble the shock and see what is rubbing against what. I thought I had wheel rubbing against fender, I have fender rubbing against suspension assembly but only in the last 1/3 of travel (so probably ok).

Not saying you don't have wheel against fender, just... that fender's pretty noisy (big long plastic) so it could go either way.

Good luck.

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:facepalm:  

Far into revisions and I still have to wonder... When Is KS ever going to learn? They had JUST started dialing in some QC and then this release. I really had hoped I wouldnt be seeing people having to ask these questions by now...

Congrats on the new wheel. I also felt it was a rather large wheel. I was shocked by just how big. I think it felt bigger than even my sherman. At any rate, youll end up enjoying it, once you finish building it for Kingsong. Seems they still cant be troubled to review proper bearing spacers. Good news is that the rest of the wheel that is NOT suspension or fender, isnt getting complaints. IN the bbigger scheme of euc, I'd say the s18 has issues that can at least be rectified more easily than some.

Edited by ShanesPlanet
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On 7/11/2021 at 8:44 AM, Alex-l said:

I've done a few more miles on the S18 and noticed a rubbing noise. The tire seems to be rubbing against the fender. It's not constant but it's annoying. It also happens when I hit speed bumps. 

Your shock need to be pressurized more. Pump up your shock while it's not compressed to get the best results.

On 7/11/2021 at 8:44 AM, Alex-l said:

And also, I feel like the wheel tends to lean on my left leg. I don't know if it is because I am not yet used to it or because the tire is misaligned.

Most likely just your stance. Play around with your foot placement. To check for misalignment, lift the wheel and let it free spin. If the tire wobbles, it's misaligned. 

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What really pleases me, and I’m sure @fbhbas well,  is the lack of paint contamination in the bearing pockets. Ah the good old days. :facepalm:

51307184036_e40d8d2f08_b.jpg

 

Edited by Rehab1
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I had 3 people contact me today on eBay asking what they should do about tire rub on their brand new S18. Are things getting worse?
Without being there to test the S18 It can be hard to say. If one slider is oiled and the other not it could cause a push to one side. Beyond that we are stuck with shimming the axle caps. I have not found a video showing how to do that. You need to make the axle perpendicular to the sliders using shims made out of cut up Coke cans. If the top or the tire is leaning to the left. On each cap you want the shim on  top of the axle to the right. Do the same on both sides. If it leans to the right than reverse that. 

Edited by RockyTop
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My comment on KS QC. I've been paranoid about checking everything because I've read about how bad QC is. My checks on all the parts is they're fine. If I wasn't a perfectionist about getting a better suspension, I'd be just off riding and enjoying. The wheel is very planted feeling, which it should be with this kind of design, very neutral, just when I ride over a bump I feel it a lot less, and I don't get thrown off by larger bumps. I think this is a great street riding wheel for extra safety because I was most worried about getting thrown under the wheels of a bus by a pavement flaw and the chances are now far lower.

I have no idea why one would add spacers in the center joint. If I take off the washer, it doesn't contact the arm. If I have spacers, the washer has no function because it's just hanging in mid-air being a mud guard which I don't think it needs. Yall mystify me.

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I spent an hour trying to unscrew the bolts and didn't manage to. I'm giving up for now on removing the washers. Just put some oil and will see how it goes.

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Keep a watch on those joints. Look for debris and aluminum or plastic filings. Not all S18’s have a problem with them. “ It Just ain’t riiiiight !!”  

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23 hours ago, 5Cauac said:

Your shock need to be pressurized more. Pump up your shock while it's not compressed to get the best results.

Most likely just your stance. Play around with your foot placement. To check for misalignment, lift the wheel and let it free spin. If the tire wobbles, it's misaligned. 

Do you mean by using a 90 degree elbow on the top chamber to pump it when it would otherwise be hidden? I.e not using the block method to pump it up? I just got my s18 and trying to figure it out, and I also had some sort of fender rubbing noise. 

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4 hours ago, Alex-l said:

I spent an hour trying to unscrew the bolts and didn't manage to.

You need stubby hex wrenches, then it should be a breeze. You don't have to work around the shock - I couldn't manage that either.

like these: https://www.amazon.com/Bondhus-16792-Stubby-L-Wrench-BriteGuard/dp/B0006O4AHY

(there are plenty of others)

Did you have stubby wrenches? If so, what was the problem? These shouldn't be very tight, mine was just barely tight, because you don't want it tight because that puts friction from the washer to the rotating unit. Mine came from KS correctly tightened - that is, very loosely, with a dab of blue locktite to keep the bolt in place.

Edited by bbulkow
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5 hours ago, Alex-l said:

I spent an hour trying to unscrew the bolts and didn't manage to. I'm giving up for now on removing the washers. Just put some oil and will see how it goes.

Mine were impossible to loosen, probably because of the thread lock they use. 

I used a butane pencil torch directed at the hex holes in the bolt and this worked.

Be careful not to lose the spacers between the bearings of both suspension parts. These give some clearance between the bearings. when the two bolt halves are fully tightened there should be some clearance and this can be checked by spinning the bolt with the allen key. It should turn freely and smoothly. I don't see the need to lubricate this joint as the bearings are sealed units.

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Aargh! mine are super tight as well, and I don't have a torch! I used stubby wrenches but it didn't work. I might have damaged the nuts somewhat at this point. What do I do now? Is it okay to ride like this or do I really need to fix this?

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