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MattRobertson last won the day on March 30

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About MattRobertson

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    Money > Brains

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  1. The Magura Brake Project

    My bike-discount.de sourced MT5e brakes got here and they look great. looks like a good source for others as long as the inventory holds up. @Marco the prices they quote already exclude VAT. Still the best web price to USA customers when you work everything in. Saw that Holland only has the levers. I considered buying those for my MT4s on Frankenbike to take advantage of the cutoffs, but the lever costs so much - even when you buy only the blade and not the entire assembly - that it makes no fiscal sense. Especially considering the existence of take-offs in retail that knock the price of the full brakeset waaay down.
  2. Whats a good towbar mounted bike rack?

    Typically standard bike racks will fall short as soon as you hear the per-bike weight limit. That rack you mention is good for 65kg but doesn't say what the per bike limit is. I expect its *nowhere* close to adequate. FYI your bike once its got two motors etc. on it is going to be 35+ kg easy. Possibly as high as 40. Motorcycle carriers are the de facto inexpensive and overbuilt option. You will need what we call a Class III trailer hitch over here ... not sure what you call them in the UK. edit: Also look at the 1Up bicycle carrier. The heavy duty version. I use a motorcycle carrier but at some point I'll replace it with a 1Up as strapping the bike down is a 10-minute pain in the a$$.
  3. 20a controller to a KT-LCD3 wendy

    Green is display. Red is brakes. Yellow is PAS and black is throttle. I would guess you are looking at buying a new display. edit: There is no blue. HIGO has a blue connector but no such animal on a Sondors bike unless its recent. The newer Sondors should have a yellow throttle HIGO the opposite gender from the PAS (male)
  4. The 100%-Legality Project (for Germany)

    Since this thread has come back from the dead, I thought I would put something into it I have figured out in the intervening months on the freewheel spacer: That stuff I said above with respect to wrench flats and their need so freewheel removal is not a huge problem turned out to be more right than I thought, for a different reason than I thought. 1. The wrench flats allow the removal of the freewheel as expected. Easy peasy. 2. This was not expected: I was unable to separate the freewheel spacer from the freewheel after removal from the bike ... the two have frozen together. I haven't tried putting the spacer in a vise and getting a REALLY Big Wrench to work on the freewheel with, but I used a LOT of force on it with two Really Big Wrenches in hand and got nowhere. Its possible that the two are not separable and my US$35+shipping freewheel spacer is going to have to be thrown away with the freewheel when it is worn completely out (4000 miles on it and not there yet, but I can see it happening soon... this summer for sure). So if the thing is disposable, lets not overspend on it. Ichi Bike has been selling their spacer for some time and when the above thread was going on they were unavailable. http://www.ichibike.com/product-page/copy-of-ichi-spacer-black I have had one sitting in my parts box for months and it seems usable enough. Same dimensions as the EBikeKit spacer. Just black oxide finish. US$10 cheaper. I will make a project of separating out the one I have when it comes off, but in the meantime I will just pull the Ichi Bike spacer from my tool box, attach it to my replacement freewheel (Clickster?) and then attack the old parts at leisure.
  5. The Magura Brake Project

    I'll answer your questions in order: 1. Yes I do. In fact I have standardized on them (and 203mm rotors front and rear) for my bike builds and just bought my third set today. My first set was bought from a Magura dealer for about $250 as detailed above. My second set came from a bike shop in Germany who was selling new, pre-bled take-offs. Cost me about $185. My third set came from bike-discount.de - a German discount bike parts web site - assumedly these are also new take-offs - and the pair ran me about $175 plus a bit of shipping I diluted by buying some other stuff from them. However they are selling 'front brakes' which means I will need a long cable I will have to refit myself. Fine I have one in my spare parts pile but Rose Bikes in Germany is the best place to buy them and avoid the near $50 Fleabay price of the cable. Insofar as stopping is concerned they are stellar. Rotors are top-drawer and pads are reasonable (Rose sells them for 1/3 of the common Fleabay price and the ship to the US is fine if you load up on other goodies - all of it cheaper than USA sellers). 2. Yes 4-pots all around. Magura does sell a non-ebike friendly downhill-oriented set of brakes that is 2-piston front and 4-piston rear ... or vice-versa. Not my cup of tea so I never considered it more than a curiosity. On another bike I put on a set of 2-piston MT4's which were cheap (take-offs again) and well-suited to the 350-watt hub motor on that bike insofar as not having cutoffs is not a big deal at closer to stock power levels. Those are a great option for bikes kept reasonably stock. At the kind of power levels a lot of us are running - 48v+ and hi amps on the controller(s) - not such a great idea. Bike-discount.de is probably the lowest-cost place to buy MT5e's new-in-box now. About $112 per axle. For just a little more, U.S. buyers should still consider 365 Cycles on Fleabay... Great FastNFree seller. Stay away from Bells Bike Shop online... they typically undercut the lowest web price by two cents but have nothing in stock and order product when you buy it. Expect LONG waits Lastly... After a few years of being the price leader, Hollandbikeshop.com no longer sells the MT5e's. So disregard mention of them above.
  6. I'm with biknut on the spokes. But I had to be shown as I insisted on 12g for my first double-wall rim build until my professional wheelbuilder talked me out of them. We did do 16mm brass nipples. Brass for strength and 16mm to better handle the angles that come from lacing a wheel with a 5"+ hub. The way it was explained to me was twofold A Chinese spoke is not a Swiss (DT) or Belgian (Sapim) spoke, in metallurgy, quality control and engineering Rims that break usually do so because they don't flex. A rim that flexes to absorb impact is one that survives. Build a super stiff rim and it has nowhere to absorb force, and you wind up with broken hub flanges and rims that break at the seam. So I caved and my first set of wheels was built with DT Swiss 2.0 Champions and 16mm brass nipples on 80mm Weinmann (Origin8) double wall rims. At present I have 4500 miles on those wheels and they remain absolutely true despite beating the snot out of them on the mean streets of Fresno. When it came time for my second set of wheels on my AWD BBSHD/Bafang fat hub bike, it was hard to argue with that sort of success. Same spokes and nipples, with 100mm rims front and rear this time. Again... bulletproof. When I built my Cyclone bike, I had wheels built in the UK (cheap... thank you Brexit!) and the builder used Sapim Strong spokes with Polyax nipples on 36h hubs and Weinmann DM24s at my spec. He didn't think I needed even those with a 36h rim. They were phenomenally strong and even a T-bone from a car didn't do them much damage. And now in progress as I type, a BBSHD light-fattie build is in progress, using a refurb'd Motobecane Lurch frame and ... two deep-dish Nextie 90mm 3k carbon fiber hoops I had left over from my last AWD bike parts pile. Couldn't use them because the angles were too sharp thanks to the reduced diameter from the deep dish. 3 guesses what spokes I am using
  7. Sondors Fold Sport and Fold Mini

    These small bikes are going to be BIG.
  8. Best tires for fat bike

    Extremely subjective question relative to the use you are putting the bike. What do you value? Flat resistance? Silence? Origin8 Supercells in the wire bead 30tpi version wear like iron, are cheap and nearly slick and silent. I have run both of the above and in the end - being a street commuter who rides daily in all weather - I went back to the Chaoyang 4.9's... except I didn't. the Chaoyang 4.9's our bikes come with are actually very good mid-duty knobbies that go safely just about everywhere. However they are pretty thin. Chaoyang's EU and North American brand is Arisun, and the Arisun Big Fatty is available and looks exactly like the Big Daddy tires we get on our bikes stock. HOWEVER, the Arisun version, rather than having a 60tpi folding bead and retailing for around $90-$100, has a wire bead, 30tpi cousin available for under US$50 at JensonUSA. The wire bead and thread count make for a heavier tire... sure. But you have an ebike and the motor makes up for a lot of sins. I have found 30tpi tires that I would have sneered at as a cyclist on a human powered bike turn out to be ideal on a fast fat ebike where you appreciate the harder wear and increased puncture resistance. The Big Fattys have proven to be tank treads on a daily-use bike that gets over 30 miles in a day.
  9. 3-Speed Conversion

    I guess it was already pointed out but to be clear I was talking about a *friction* shifter... Look at that ebay ad and its the one marked simply '+/-'. ... a dinosaur from eons past before index shifters evolved and crawled out of the mud. @nikwax sorry no pictures. I ended up going AWD and pulled the shifters off in their infancy... to make room for two throttles (2 motors = 4Kw = gears unnecessary).
  10. Seat post mounted carrier

    the Ibera seatpost rack is actually the IB-RA1. I used it to hold my 20ah battery for my Cyclone'd bike. Seatpost racks all seem to have the same issue: they shift. Its not a shock as to why. For the Ibera rack, I did what I often do with any piece of bike hardware: I upgraded the mounting bolts. In this case I used a longer mounting bolt. I think it used an M8. A longer bolt gave me more thread engagement inside the mount so I could more confidently tighten the sucker down. I also used a single layer of thin rubber electrical tape to promote adhesion to the seat tube. Despite all this, the rack shifted. Not terribly so on a single day, but it required an adjustment every ... week or two. The bike was a 'weekender' that didn't get a lot of miles until it/I was t-boned by an inattentive motorist and effectively destroyed. All seatpost racks have this flaw... with potentially one single exception. Take a look at what @ScoobySnacks did with his seatpost rack. I have always thought this rack to be ugly and a little bit of a sad sack. But the way he removed the silly 'holder' tubing and kept the runctional side braces... this could solve the age-old problem all seatpost racks face. Edit: Something to consider: Just because you do not need the extra carrying capacity... so what? Its a better design. Take advantage of it. Seatpost racks exist as makeshift solutions to the problem of mounting a rack on a suspension bicycle. They are inherently not as good of a design. Don't handicap yourself.
  11. Front cargo rack for Sondors X

    I remember that bike. Was long before I decided to try a front rack. Looking at it, he used an Ibera rack and then either made his own lower rack mount pieces or he put a 45-degree bend in the pieces that come from the factory, so he could mount to the fork eyelets. Then he used four hose clamps to clamp the rack to the front of the bike up top, with some kind of strapping to do the final affixing to the head tube. Probably has some padding of some kind where the rack is jammed against that head tube in front so its not metal on paint/metal. Also the hose clamps are in only one of the three pics. The other two, I see giant zip ties, which are surprisingly sturdy if you buy the right kind. I have some industrial monsters for my Cyclone motor that are rated for 250 lbs and 185 degrees. Honestly you wouldn't need to go that big here. Four smaller 75-lb ties like Home Depot sells would be plenty. It ain't pretty but I bet it works fine. Guessing he needed to use some heat to get that short-radius bend in the rack stay.
  12. Any motor and battery upgrades for "thin"

    @Chad Lauterbach if you live on a steep hill, that makes things tough for you. As you've heard its common to remove the stock cranks and put on something different that can accept a variety of chainrings up front. The trouble is what that will do to you on a hill you are trying to climb. To get home. The solution is, of course, traditional gears. A single speed bike is either going to be good for flat ground or hills depending on what gears it has. But it can't be both It *is* possible to put a 6-7 speed rear gear cluster (freewheel) on that Thin but you are going to have to do more work than someone new to bikes should be doing. You are talking about spreading your chain/seatstays to accommodate the wider cluster width, and then likely as a secondary measure bending the rear dropouts back into parallel (that second step is almost never done by the shade tree bike mechanic but its pretty important). Best bet is to visit the 3-speed conversion page and first, get a 3-speed cluster working on the rear of your bike. I believe that can either be done with no spreading or with so little spreading that its not anything to be concerned with. Once you have two new, higher gears available you can change out your front crankset to something - I suggest a 130 BCD (Bolt Circle Diameter) crank spider so you are good for 42T up to the Ridiculous Zone which peaks at 60T on the fatties. I would just bite the bullet on cost and first throw on whatever comes with the crank set... maybe a 46T? See if you are happy with it. If so, buy a slightly larger one... a 48T? Use it. Good to go? Want more? Try a 50 and so on. Chainrings are $25 to $35 a pop and you want to strike a balance between being able to pedal up the hill strongly (you need to help that motor get up the hill!) and not clown pedaling on the flats. A secondary issue is what that hill is going to do to your gear teeth inside that rear hub motor. With a 25a controller and a 48v battery, you will be darn near best-case on power to try and make it up that hill, but all that power is delivered to forward motion via the internal gears inside the motor... the chain/drivetrain has nothing to do with it. So ALL of the stress of shoving you up the hill is on those tiny nylon teeth in your planetary gear assembly inside the motor. The term for what can happen is to 'peanut butter' the gears and you can guess what that means your gears look like if you overdo it. Best advice for me to give you is don't rely on throttle to get up the hills. Work it. A geared hub is not in its element going up a hill so do your part to postpone or avoid what is otherwise a significant risk. I built a whole other bike to combat steep hills for this reason. My Sondors is optimized for high speed on the flats.
  13. Any motor and battery upgrades for "thin"

    @Chad Lauterbach, if you are trying to accomplish a power delivery increase with that 500w motor, thats not going to work. Motor ratings simply are a measure of how much punishment the motor can take over a prolonged period. Bigger numbers = more is the simplest way to look at it. Add to that the fact that Bafang underrates their motors. A 350w motor has been found to happily take 1000w + with no ill effects. How do you increase power? In automotive terms, amps are torque and volts are horsepower. So if you want stronger acceleration, add a 20 or 25a controller. If you want higher top speed, change your 36v battery to a 48v or 52v. Want both? Do both controller and battery (which is very common). How much can the stock motor take? A 25a controller and a 48v battery should be good all day long, forever. A 52v battery and a 25a controller is usually fine. A few owners who use their bikes as hill climbers on full throttle have smoked their motors. For almost everyone though its no problem. To date, for the Thin, there is no motor upgrade. There are 500w and 750w options for the fatties but nothing for Thins. On fatties, 500w is of dubious value. But a 750w motor has a different plug ... and it fits a 35a controller which, coupled to 52v, makes for a hot rod 30 mph bike... 40 mph if you set it up for 60v.
  14. Front cargo rack for Sondors X

    As noted above, I found the Axiom Fatliner to be an excellent front rack. But it takes some finagling. Ideally you would make some improvements to what I have done if you want to put serious weight on the rack, which I will describe. I have done three of these on three fat bikes, only one of which is a Sondors. the first pic will be on that bike and the remainder will be more recent builds where I have refined the process somewhat. Here's the bike with the rack installed: The center support needs to be re-bent to fit the front of the bike. Its thick metal but relatively soft. I carefully stood on mine. I also used a VERY large crescent wrench to change the bend of the portion that bolts to the fork crown. Lastly I used a hammer to flatten the portions that were a bit of an arc, where I wanted them to be as straight as possible. You are just going to have to go at this until you are personally satisfied. The pic above basically proves the concept valid. Also, see the two bolts holding the center support on near the base of the support? The rack holes are sized for M5 bolts from the factory. I wanted to use the beefier M6 so I drilled them out - its an alloy rack so thats easy. Then, since as you can see the holes are well back from the factory slot meant for those bolts, I had to drill two new holes in the metal support. Needless to say this requires care to get the holes just right. Measure twice, drill once. Here is a later pic showing the cover I put on the rack - I used flexible cutting board plastic bought cheap on Amazon - See the hose clamps peeking out the sides? I used I think 3" clamps (maybe a little smaller) and threaded them around the rack side and into the center support. One on each side and pulling (gently! ) on the inside of the center support. This helps increase the effectiveness of the center support. I use a third very small hose clamp just behind these two, wrapping just around the center support, to clamp onto the support and ensure the two hose clamps you can see don't risk pulling the center support apart. I was careful not to do that in the first place and the third clamp just helps seal the deal long term. That takes care of fitment to the top with one final note: You will need a very long M6 bolt to thread thru the fork crown eye thats already there, as well as a couple of washers and a locknut. I took 3M mastik tape (moisture sealing electrical tape) which is very thick and serves as a rubber pad where needed. I cut a bit to back the washer on the inside of the fork crown, and a bit more for the side of the center rack support that contacts the fork. This protects the paint on both sides. So... how do we get the rack attached to the axle? Axiom sells an Axle mount kit. Google 'axiom rack axle kit' and you'll see what you need. The manufacturer sells just one pair for the job, but for these Axiom racks - on the rear where I have the space - I like to use two. One mounted inside and one outside of the rack tubing, with spacers in between. Since this axle kit is less robust than the original mount, you may want to go there. I don't and I have found the rack is able to handle quite a lot of weight... but you were warned and given a solution :-) Here is a closeup of one of my more recent builds. It is noteworthy because of the overly large 9/16" Grade 8 hardened washers I have taken to using. I really like these as they give a lot of coverage on and surrounding that axle mount. You would not have a torque arm in the picture so you may be able to sandwich the mount directly between two washers. Or just use one on the outside. Your call. Lastly, I hear the Blackburn Outpost fat rack will also work on the front, mounting to the fork eyelets. At more than double the internet price of an Axiom rack, I have never found any reason to try it.
  15. Front and rear racks and fenders for FOLD X

    Thats a very nicely done Fold. In particular I like the removal of the pannier/side supports which really clean up the look of the rack. Doesn't look like you have a lot of room to let that Thudbuster articulate, though. I'm guessing you are not an especially large person and don't need it.

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