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Tires, Tubes and more

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17 hours ago, alienmeatsack said:

@biknutMinus the stuff on the side of those tires, the tread is hella sexy! It's very sports motorcycle style looking. How is the thickness of the tread and sidewalls in regards to goat heads and other punctures on those?

How good they are at resisting flats is my only question. Time will tell. So far we have about 200 miles with no flats. Have about 8oz of slime in each of them.

 

The tread seems pretty thick, but the sidewalls are average bicycle thickness. The rubber feels tough, but that doesn't mean much. They grip the road well, and are a lot quieter then the stock tires, but not as quiet as the Hook Worms on my Fatty.

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200 miles is good. What is your typical previous mileage between them on the bikes w the other tires?

I get them so often on the fat bike that I have double the slime plus Mr Tuffy 4xxl liners and still they get flats. Here, goat heads are a real problem esp once they get dried. And they are everywhere.

Those tires have me wanting to try them for the fat as I'm rebuilding it, I like the tires on it but they are really loud esp cornering, and get flats way too easy.

I may try the tires you linked on it as I rebuild it. I want to make it look appealing in case I sell but also fun for me to ride.

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With bicycle flats, it seems like luck has a lot to do with it. All I know is tires play a big role in how resistant you are to flats, and use a lot of slime.

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I ride the Vee Tire Mission Command tires, universal tread, optimized for pavement, fast rolling, low rolling resistant, 120 tpi, on my Electric Black Lightening. They are also available in 20 X 4 for the Fold. https://www.amazon.com/Vee-Tire-Co-Mission-Command/dp/B019HK5BIY

26X4" Frontimage.thumb.jpeg.26e3f9f3928e9ad39be3491df40dc274.jpeg

20X4

image.jpeg.2906e7df3086714c783ef7dcd92ec74a.jpeg

26 X4.7 rearimage.thumb.jpeg.fa8b18ba05ed40915d7222fb37198d81.jpeg

image.jpeg.b8bec3ed6d409c68a55f5c983611290d.jpeg

Reddy

Edited by Reddy Kilowatt

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@biknut - I use about 8-10oz of slime in my fat tires and 4-6 in my standard ones. I also have the Mr Tuffy 4XXXL liners in the fatty. I think the tires sidewalls seem to be the weakness over all and even the liner and slime doesnt seem to help. I’ve heard of people cutting open old tubes and putting the main inflated tube inside those to give extra layers of protection but it seems a bit excessive and adds more weight. Not sure how much in relation to a 70+ lbs bike. :D

I find here in Oklahoma the hardest thing to deal with is goatheads esp this time of year when they are dry and hard. I’ve had them go through my flat proof tires on another bike and through Mr Tuffy liners and Slime making a hole big enough the Slime couldnt keep up or plug it. I’m wondering if maybe a tubeless tire sealant inside of the tube might help. Do yu have any experience in this?

 

Ansd you were right on the luck thing for sure. I got 700+ miles on the Thin with not a care in the world then within a week 3 flats, 2 requiring tube replacement. But on the fatty, as soon as I put those new tires on it and slimed it up, I had a flat or two every few days sometimes I’d have to keep airing to maintain pressure. Thank goodness the fat tires do well even on lower pressures. Which makes me also wonder if that is why they seem to be more suceptible (size not included) to punctures, there’s not as much pressure pushing the slime through the holes or the tires against the tubes to hold those hole. I have no clue.

If someone can come up with a tire filler that replications “wall foam” in its expansion but simulates when dry a normal tire filled to whatever PSI you want based on how much you put in. That would be nice. Then you just have a set of rims loaded and ready to go if you want to ride the normal ones, and a set filled with the “air like” foam.

I tried this years ago with rubber cement in a BMX tire and it did not go well. :D

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I feel your pain alien, flats are like a plague. I try to stay off the grass as much as possible for that reason. If you really have to deal with those stinkin goat heads a lot, you may have to consider a 120 tpi tire, expensive as they are.

 

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30 tpi tires are more flat resistant.  Harder rubber.  Not as supple and very heavy so from a performance standpoint they are not what you would want to touch on a regular bike.  I would have spit on a 30tpi tire before fat ebiking came along.  Now I love the things. 

My 30tpi Origin8 Supercells wore like iron.  2000 miles over the summer and I need a tread gauge to measure the degree of wear.  The near-slick surface liked to find nails though.  But thats all that made it thru.  Retired them for the winter and went to 30tpi, 26x4.9 Arisun Big Fatties.  These are wire-beaded Big Daddies made for Arisun by Chaoyang.  Exact tire as from Sondors but sturdier and apparently a higher standard of quality.  Cost is $49.  Wear is minimal and so far zero flats after a few hundred miles. 

I'm sure that will change at some point.

Edited by MattRobertson

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Should be getting my Fold X-7 today. Urban dweller planning on riding it on paved roads and a concrete bike path. What flat prevention prepping should I perform and/or have done at a LBS?

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@X-Foldes - congrats, I’m jealous I want one of the Folds myself but I have 2 Sondors already.

Flat prevention, that is one that we’ve discussed quite a bit. I personally live where there are lots of goathead stickers. So I have Mr Tuffy 4XXXL liners in my fat bike tires and normal ones in my Thin tires, I also put in about 6oz of Slime or similar into the Thins tubes and double that into the Fat. You can also use something like Gorilla tape or Duct tape to tape the inside of the rim to remove any sharp edges which helps on the Thin since it has a wierd step design inside.

And of course, always keep everything you need to fit or change a flat on you. Make sure you have the right tube with the right valve stem length, wrench for nuts on wheels, compressed air or a pump, a patch kit, and I toss in $10-20 in my riding bag so I have money for a tube or to get a ride just to be safe.

The compressed air cartridges are my main inflation means out in the wild. Pumping up a fat tire is a real pain. I had my first Thin flat 7 miles from home and used the compressed air to fill the tire enough to ride a way and repeat until I got home. I didn’t have the wrench with me and had the wrong tube stem length and my patch kit I had used for someone else a week before so I got caught off guard. Now I carry that stuff on the bike and in my bike backpack too to be safe.

 

hope this helps!

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On 10/23/2017 at 8:51 PM, biknut said:

I feel your pain alien, flats are like a plague. I try to stay off the grass as much as possible for that reason. If you really have to deal with those stinkin goat heads a lot, you may have to consider a 120 tpi tire, expensive as they are.

 

Sorry for the delay on this, life got interesting the last month or so.

I actually have the Vee Sportsters on there now, posted my install pics here. They are 120tpi tires and they pick up goatheads bad. I think its the tread, it is great as a grip and the ride is great. But I end up with dozens of goatheads on them vs the stock tires. I was looking at new ones with thicker rubber once I get the bike up to working condition again. Any ones you recommend that might be better for goathead country? I was seriously considering adding 2-4 cut open tubes around the main one to add layers of protection on top of the Mr Tuffy liners and Slime in them. Ironically, the bike’s sat now since April 2016 minus the work Ive done on it and the tires are holding at around 12PSI. There were 15-16 when I rode it last. I prefer 20 on roads on these tires but was hoping if they were a bit softer the goatheads might not puncture as easily.

Ive even tried (with a cheap tube and tire on a cheap rim) filling the tube with expanding foam. That went very very poorly and was so embarrassing I didnt post or mention it. Let’s just say I over filled and woke up to a loud bang in the garage and came out to find expanding foam everywhere and a split open tire and tube. Luckily I put a trash bag over it but it still got on the floor and hardened and I spent an hour scraping it off. And then as I did so I realized the foam was hard and would dent permenantly so riding would have been a disaster. I’m searching for a soft foam rubber to put in them that allows me to air them up but if they go fully flat the rubber ring inside provides some support so I can limp home. Found a place who will cast the molds for me, and am supposed to get with them in the Spring. They are going to try some “to pressure” molds, so I can pop the “rubber air” into the tire and seat it on the rim and it should technically feel like 20PSI and ride like it has air not rubber. I got the idea from a lawn mower tire insert I saw once, it basically was just a rubber insert that you put in and then aired the tire to pressure and if it went flat, the rubber lining would be there so it’s only about half flat.

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@X-Foldes, I put almost 3 thousand miles on the Original Fat 26x4.9 Chaoyang tires, before building new wheels with new Vee Rubber Mission Command tires when upgrading to the 750 watt Bafang geared hub motor. The Chaoyang are pretty tough and my riding experience is similar to yours. I have the luxury of a bike path that I use to travel to two different cities, in opposite directions,  from my lakeside cabin in a forest for about 50% of my routes. The other 50% is city streets or highway service rd with a few hard pack & gravel roads in the mix. Those tires are tough,  but noisy with high rolling resistance. The noise I didn't mind on the path as it acted as an early warning system to other path users.  I still use Chaoyangs on two other fat bikes. I had only one low tire, with the Chaoyangs, discovered before a ride and caused by a thumb tack. That was before I started riding with Slime, 8 oz per fat tube. That's the only incident I had with the stock tires. I don't use tire liners and they can be the cause of more flats than they prevent. Stanz's also produces a sealant for tubes but the consensus, from my ride partner and major bike shop owner since the mid 80's, Bike Shop Ben, is Stanz is better in tubless, Slime is better in tubes but don't mix them. Don't leave home without sealent.  The only substitute for air in tires is Nitrogen and what I use in my aircraft tires. There are some riders who mix their own sealants with success and you can find their formulas by Googling Bicycle Tire Sealant Recipes.  I've been an avid cyclist all my life but seriously since the mid 80. I ride on the higher side of suggested PSI and in the Chaoyangs I rode 32psi and added air when they leaked down to 28. Fat, low pressure, high volume tires, leak down fairly slow compared to thinner, low volume, high pressure tires and the higher pressure in the Fat's  (on pavement), helps guard against punctures and lowers rolling resistance. 

image.jpeg.f4c0624b2dc6d3f299c2db8744841cda.jpeg

Reddy

Edited by Reddy Kilowatt
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Thanks for the responses.

Considering the cost of tire liners and the post from Reddy Kilowatt, I'll try Slime only. And I plan to ride with the tires at 20 PSI which is the max for the Fold tires. It's been awhile since I've rode a bicycle so I'll stay within town while I learn the bike. I'll wait until my first flat to check the rim inside and decide if rim tape (duct tape) would help.

Now I just need UPS to deliver the bike; they have 1.5 hours left before end of day (7PM). It's been out for delivery since yesterday and if I don't get it today, I'll open a lost package incident.:(

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Good luck, hope the bike shows soon! I assume you’ve contacted UPS to make sure its really in their hands somewhere and all?

And let us know how the tires fix works..

re flats and such... The problem is that everyone’s situation is different and what works for one doesnt always work for the other. Its why this place is good. You can get a few viewpoints and ideas to work with and see what fits your needs. I have tons of goatheads, a rough asphalt path here. Others do lots of city riding and have glass and such, others ride on dirt with sticks and rocks. I wish there were a one fit for all fix for flats. Sadly there isnt.

And there’s even the fat vs thin tire flat thing... like for me my flats had a dozen flats and 4-6 tubes... Thin had nothing until 700 miles and then literally both flats within less then a week and i found nothing in the tube or tire minus the hole.

Slime usually takes care of that but I put the liners in because I was spending more on tubes then a set of them were for me. You may end up with no flats and ride forever, I hope so! 

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@X-Foldes: I've been a daily rider for decades since I was a kid, with about a 15 year break before January of this year.  From its introduction into the market over 30 years ago, I have been a Tuffy user.  Its been awesome.  So when I got a fat bike first thing I did was run out and blow the big bucks on Tuffy4XL

I gave it every chance in the world.  Over maybe two thousand miles of riding.  In the end, I pulled it out and tossed it into a corner.  Fact is, the various widths in the XL series of Tuffy products are not what the others are.  they use a differently-constructed barrier material that frankly doesn't work.  On a fat tire, nail after nail went right through what an original thick hunk o' Tuffy would have turned away on a 700x20C tire.

So I went over to the dark side and started using Slime.  Something I have never stooped to - its heavy, gloopy and generally just nasty stuff.  However... Its proven itself to me and I was wrong to hate it.

BTW you won't get flats from Mr. Tuffy brand liners unless you decide to trim them yourself (very likely on a shortie Fold).  Tuffy has specially machined edges that, if properly overlapped, don't cause any trouble with sharp edges cutting tubes.  Not true with many imitator products, that truly do cause as many flats as they prevent.

Tuffy has released a solution to compete with Slime.  Based on the product claims, it leads me to believe whats inside the bottle is Berryman's sealant, which is in fact pretty good stuff (very different from Slime).  Might be worth a look.  I use Berryman's in my daily driver's front tire and zero flats since it went in.

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On 1/15/2017 at 3:34 PM, MattRobertson said:

Oh and the pump.  GET THE LEZYNE HV XL I linked earlier.  As reviewers have implied: Its a miracle.  I can pump up to 20 psi without getting tired.  Much.  I actually had to bleed some air out to get the tire down to 20 after this flat.  Totally worth the money.  I am also using it in the garage instead of my compressor as its easy enough to use that the compressor is not worth firing up - I'll be done with the hand pump soon enough.

41LSaSoxobL.jpg

I used it when I changed out my rim strips to yellow, did my presta conversion and lined the wheels with Tuffy 4XL.  Sitting on a stool, one foot under the foot peg doodad and pumping with one hand ... easy-peasy.

 

edit June 5 2017:  Pumping 26x4.0 tires from 0 to 23 psi: 140 strokes.

I like this pump recommended by MattRobertson; lightweight and elegant design. And I no longer have to run a compressor off my car battery when the nephews need air in their bicycle tires.

Today, finished putting 4 oz of Berryman in each of my Fold X-7 tires. The front went well; didn't spill a drop. A drop shot out of the rear tire valve when I removed the fill tube. I used an 8 oz bottle of Berryman and had to really compress the bottle to get the last couple of ounces out. My next mission is to adjust the brakes so there's no rubbing.

Edited by X-Foldes

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So for FOLD X   - i see the factory TUBES they were sent with are haoyang 20x4.0/4.9  (100/116-406), whats a good replacement ?

Perhaps im confused is the factory tube then a 20x4 or 20x5 (4.9) ?

- i thought the tubes were just 20x4 and accidentally picked up some kenda 20x3.5/4.0   - should i return them or will they fit my fold x?

Edited by steve77
clarification was referencing tubes not tires

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Replacment tires will depend on your mission. I really like the Vee Tire Co Mission Command (see above). It’s a lugged Tire with a fast rolling center tread and considered universal with low rolling resistance. I ride mostly on hard pack and pavement but start and end every ride on my 8th mile long gravel road on a 42 mile route. The 72tip version, Is what I ride and it is a little heavier and tougher than the 120tpi I started with. Those tubes will be fine.

http://shop.veetireco.com/product-p/missioncommand-n-26x4.0.htm

488CAC70-BC5F-4139-92DC-DF66F569CF0C.jpeg.b088b2d81abcc8d39ddc954886d078b2.jpeg

image.jpeg.460181aebee7ca43d0f0c2b7c7188c24.jpeg

     Reddy

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ill def check the Vee Tire Co Mission Command tires out - was more concerned with the tubes - as some of the tubes ive seen are thicker than others. as i was saying (should have clarifies things a bit better ) looks like the bike comes with chaoyang 20x4.0/4.9   inner-tubes, im not sure if i needed  the exact size - and ended up getting some tubes locally but they were kenda 20x3.5/4.0  tubes and not sure if it would be real snug. But you say it will be fine  with the 3.5/4.0 tubes instead of the factory 4.0/4.9 tubes? 

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Well, you started your original post with and said; “ So for FOLD X   - i see the factory sent them with chaoyang 20x4.0/4.9  (100/116-406), whats a good replacement ?”  I thought you meant tires, my bad., thanks for editing in “Tubes”. That’s why I supplied, in my experience, a great replacement tire. I use a 26 x 4.0 front and 26 x 4.7 rear. Other’s here on the forum have their favorite tires.  Two or my bikes keep the original Chaoyangs and they’re tough tires and although pretty noisy, that’s not necessarily a bad thing if you ride trails or trailways. They announce your presence.

As to tubes, tubes are elastic and that’s why, for instance, the Surly Tubes I buy for all my Fat and Narrow tires suggest the range 3.0 to 4.8”and  personally, I’m convinced that tube thickness plays a small part in protecting against flats. The 4  flats I’ve had in over 7,000 miles, were one thumb tack and 3 incidents of tiny pieces of car radial tire steel belt wire. Those tiny pieces of wire, when radial tires wear to the belts, that can penetrate the thick, hard rubber carcass of the tire, have no problem then penitrating any thickness of tube. What is more important , in my experience is, if and what you put in your tubes. Sealant is the better consideration in my estimation. 

Although the wheels I built and tires I use are tubeless, I’ve yet to convert. I’m not convinced that tubeless with sealant is any better than tubes with sealant on getting you home after a puncture.  

Happy puncture free riding.

image.jpeg.460181aebee7ca43d0f0c2b7c7188c24.jpeg

     Reddy

 

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No, but I’d recommend TruckerCo Tire Sealant. I’ve used Slime in the past but have switched to TruckerCo and I’ve found  it’s far superior, in my Fat Tire Vee Rubber Mission Command II’s and have not flatted since switching a year ago. Matter of fact, I switched when I installed my last rear and have just received another rear Mission Command to replace that flat free rear tire because I’ll replace it before wearing it completely out...be switching rear tires soon. 

https://www.amazon.com/TruckerCo-Performance-Cream-Tubeless-Sealant/dp/B01MZIL6KS

image.jpeg.460181aebee7ca43d0f0c2b7c7188c24.jpeg

     Reddy 

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Yes, tire liners seem to work on narrower tires but as reported here by members, not so well on Fat’s.  Agreed that your first defence is a good set of tires.  Even Matt Robinson, another one of us high mileage commuters, was a user and fan of liners on his road and MTB and tried them on his Sondors Fat but tossed them after they proved ineffective. There’s even a rider on the electricbike.com forum who tried mounting motorcycle tires inside his fat tired eBike, he was so plagued by flats. Can you imagine the effect of the rotating mass on those wheels and steering? There are a new breed of foam filled flatless tires showing up in the market. I’m skeptical and wouldn’t be an early adopter even if they were offered in fat bike sizes. And then there is this :

https://electricbike.com/forum/forum/main-forum/general-discussions/77012-i-am-making-a-4-wide-14-gauge-mild-steel-sheet-tire-liner

The most common reason for flats, we saw at the shop was under inflation. Riders just didn’t check their tires often enough. 

image.jpeg.460181aebee7ca43d0f0c2b7c7188c24.jpeg

     Reddy 

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      Most owners with these bikes wanting an LCD (it wasn’t included) choose to swap out their controllers for an aftermarket 20A or 25A version (around $55-$65) and add a generic LCD for around the same price. The 3-LED throttle works fine with these aftermarket controllers. Because these bikes have a 350W motor with the smaller plug, going above 25A will usually require a motor swap and usually an upgraded battery at no small cost. Many people do 48v or 52v upgrades using huge, aftermarket triangle batteries for higher top end speed and more range than the average butt can handle.
      The first SONDORS direct generation (Generation 3)
      This could actually be 2 or 3 generations with all of the changes happening, but from a compatibility standpoint I’ll lump them all together. Following the IGG and KS crowdfunding campaigns, SONDORS took ordering in-house. They started with a bike that looked just like the KS bikes but with some new colors (including red and royal blue) and also included a bottle battery. For ease, I’m going to include those bottle battery bikes sold direct into the Generation 2 bucket because technically they’re similar. However, as 2016 turned into 2017 SONDORS started introducing triangle batteries, gears, the Thin, Fold, and even the X bikes. This generation used the proprietary KT-LCD3 LCD with SONDORS printed on it, and maintained the proprietary 15A controller with the “U” in the serial number. However, this new controller now had different plugs for the new triangle and fold batteries which added some complexity.
      This is also when SONDORS introduced 7 speed bikes, which also introduced a proprietary 3 pin throttle. These 3 pin throttles look similar to the Bafang BBSHD throttle, BUT the pins are male instead of female. This is to keep owners from plugging the throttle into the PAS plug on the controller. These throttles are only available from SONDORS, although you can sometimes find them for sale by owners that have swapped theirs out.
      Identification:
      There are so many bikes that fall into this generation you are better off using process of elimination. If your bike has a bottle battery, it’s either Generation 1 or Generation 2. If your bike has a triangle battery AND a rectangular LCD based on the KT-LCD3, you fall into this generation.
      The picture on the right is a SONDORS-KT LCD3 LCD.
      Compatibility:
      This is where compatibility gets “fun”. Like with previous SONDORS bikes that are not “Generation 1”, aftermarket LCDs will not work with the stock 15A controller. The bike will run, but the display will be messed up. Here are some key points:
      If you want to keep the stock controller, you will need to get the replacement LCD from SONDORS If you want to upgrade your controller to 20A or 25A, you will need a new, aftermarket LCD. You can get the tried and true KT-LCD3, but one of the known vendors is now selling a compatible color LCD for around $20 more. If you upgrade the controller, you will need to get one with the correct battery connector, OR transplant the connector from your old controller to your new one. Most generic controllers are just 2 wire If you have a 7 speed bike, you will also need to replace the throttle if you upgrade the controller. This is because the aftermarket controllers use the 6 pin throttle and not the SONDORS 3 pin version If you need a new throttle for a single speed bike, you can get a generic 6 pin throttle from known vendors. If you need a new throttle for a 7 speed bike, you have only a couple of choices – buy one from SONDORS, or swap out the controller, LCD and throttle to something generic and not proprietary  Another option is a brand new upgrade kit available form SONDORS. This includes an upgraded controller and color LCD for around $200. If you get the right kit the LCD will be set correctly and it will be compatible with the throttle Easy, right?
      Current mid-2018 Generation (Generation 4)
      In mid-2018 SONDORS switched out the controller and LCD for a new square version called the KD51C-KDS (aka KD51). This new display is completely different under the hood, and it’s gotten mixed reviews. People like that you can adjust PAS power levels, but many dislike that you can no longer see voltage on the display. All bikes during this generation were changed. They all still have triangle batteries, but the controllers and LCD for the “Original” (yes, the name is confusing), Thin, Fold, X, Sport and Mini are all changed.
      Identification:
      This one is easy. If you have a KD51 LCD, you have what we’re calling a Generation 4 bike. The picture on the right is the KD51.
      Compatibility:
      All of the compatibility notes from Generation 3 still apply, but it’s also important to note that none of the previous generation controllers are compatible with this LCD, and none of the previous generation LCDs (or generics) are compatible with the Generation 4 controller.
      You still need to be aware of the single speed versus 7 speed throttle compatibility with this new controller While Generation 2 and 3 LCDs and controllers are interchangeable with each other, neither are interchangeable with Generation 4 This is why many with LCD, controller or throttle issues choose to go towards generic again unless covered under warranty by SONDORS. Like with previous generations, SONDORS now sells an upgrade kit for around $200 that contains a new color LCD and either a 20A or 25A controller depending on the bike. These kits will also not be compatible with aftermarket parts, but it will maintain compatibility with your throttle if you get the right kit. November 2018
      1.0.0 - Mike Ritchie
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