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  1. #1
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    drop bars and electric kits?

    My commuting bike has drop bars. This is the bike that I'd like to put an electric motor conversion kit on.

    I am contemplating the BionX PL350 kit - one reason is that the proportional assist would not require that I operate a throttle all of the time.

    Does anyone have experience with a 9-speed freewheel and/or drop handlebars and a BionX? The Electric Cyclery store says they sell a 9-speed freewheel for BionX.
    http://www.greenspeed.us/bionx_motor_bike_kit.htm

    Is anybody using an electric kit on a bike with drop handlebars and brifters?

    Thanks, Esther

  2. #2
    Senior Member nwmtnbkr's Avatar
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    I can't answer your questions about the BionX, but there is at least one thread on endless-sphere about restoring drop handlebars on a Trek with a non-BionX conversion kit. http://endless-sphere.com/forums/vie...php?f=6&t=3742

    If you don't get many responses on this forum, you might register at endless-sphere and post your questions there. Good luck.

  3. #3
    Senior Member
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    I have a cyclocross with drop bars and a Bionx PL500HS. I use a 7 speed 11-28 rear cog with an 8 speed shifter.

    See my post here here.

  4. #4
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    Bionx installation questions

    I ride a Bacchetta Giro recumbent with "tweener" handlebars, which raise similar installation issues.

    I found that my best bet was to use a short aluminum bar-end at right-angles to the bars. That lets me mount the display in the orientation Bionx intended, leaves the throttle lever in a place that works for me, and provides a bit of bump-and-crash protection for the expensive Bionx console. (My dealer tried a plastic "knob"-type adapter at first, but it just isn't strong enough for the forces you put on the big Bionx display when you push the buttons along the edge.)

    I don't know exactly what 9-speed freewheel your source is distributing, but I'd check. The SunRace product distributed by Bionx... well, it isn't the same quality as everything else you're paying for.

    For myself, I bit the bullet and converted to a 7-speed friction setup. IRD Defiant 7-speed freewheels are much higher quality products.

    Charlie
    http://ElectricCyclist.com

  5. #5
    Junior Member
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    I've got a pre2009 Bionx PL350 on a Catrike. Recently got a PL500 Rev 4.0 and put it on an aluminum framed 9 speed Raleigh Super Course Road bike with dropped handle bars, using Shimano STI shifters and a 7 speed 11-34 Shimano Megarange freewheel, w/same chain. Shifts great and speeds and distance work same as yours. Rev 4.0 unfortunately has a code 3773 speed limit of 25 kkm/h (European standards) Can't turn it off with 3773=0. But, by putting in 1300 mm for the wheel size (code) 3771) it fools the software somehow and allows the bike to go 27+mph under assistance. 39 mph going downhill. Unfortunately the console speedometer isn't accurate but I use a Cateye Astrale so I'm OK. If your motor cuts out on long uphills change 1234 to 0=off. Do you have any idea what code 3774 PR=1 means? p.s. I run a 36 v. LiFePo4 20 AH battery pack --about $450--(also 42 v at full charge) in parallel through the Bionx XLR port. A spst switch separates the battery packs so I can charge them separately. Battery is in a shoe shine box strapped to a rear carrier. This setup triples the original Bionx range. I've got a 0-10 amp ammeter on my aero bars and it shows that as the Bionx battery discharges the supplementary pack charges it. Works great. The PL500 at my weight, 135 lbs, gets me up the steepest hills with only about 10% less torque than my PL350. In my opinion the PL500 is far superior in every respect to the PL 350, unless of course you weigh over 180 lbs!

    p.s. Bionx recommends you never use regen mode 4 going down hill as it will burn out the motor. Also recommends you do not set code 2002 regen braking to any more than 20.

    Stan

  6. #6
    Senior Member RayB's Avatar
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    I am using a crystalyte kit on my drop bar Trek 520. I use a PAS sensor on the crank so I do not have to consistently use the throttle but have also added a throttle using an extension bar so when I feel like controlling the speed myself I can do.

    Here is the setup on the drops




    Here is the entire setup:




    Although I have now changed the rackpack to a topeak setup.
    RayB

    2010 Civia Bryant
    2008 Trek 520

  7. #7
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    I got the 9-speed freewheel, but looking retroactively it was a bad idea. The freewheel apparatus prevents you from getting a 11 tooth gear for the ninth gear, so you don't get the benefit of the full range. Secondly, chains and equipment for 9 speeds is exceedingly more expensive and less rugged than 8 speeds on down. Since the BionX is taking up the burden of the hills, you'll find yourself using only a few of the higher gears. As a result, with 20/20 hind-sight, I'd change out my deraileur for a 6 speed set-up, which would make my bike a tank and cost less to maintain (typical story with bicycles).

  8. #8
    Both Coasts...
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    Quote Originally Posted by Llamero View Post
    I got the 9-speed freewheel, but looking retroactively it was a bad idea. The freewheel apparatus prevents you from getting a 11 tooth gear for the ninth gear, so you don't get the benefit of the full range. Secondly, chains and equipment for 9 speeds is exceedingly more expensive and less rugged than 8 speeds on down. Since the BionX is taking up the burden of the hills, you'll find yourself using only a few of the higher gears. As a result, with 20/20 hind-sight, I'd change out my deraileur for a 6 speed set-up, which would make my bike a tank and cost less to maintain (typical story with bicycles).
    Seriously, what he said. I'm not a bicycle guy but I know what it's like to ride an eBike and other than severe hills I fail to see why people bother with more than 3 speeds? The motor helps enough that you simply don't need much in the way of gearing. Unless, you ride very steep grades...

  9. #9
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    Stan, bless you! I hadn't found the 1234 code. I'll add that to my collection, and plan to summarize everything on my own site.

    Charlie
    http://ElectricCyclist.com

  10. #10
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    Broadway Joe, I think Bionx figured that out too. They're now marketing a 3-speed Bionx hub as well (in European markets only, I believe.)

    Charlie
    http://ElectricCyclist.com

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