Go Back  Bike Forums > Bike Forums > Electric Bikes
Reload this Page >

Front wheel drive vs rwd

Notices
Electric Bikes Here's a place to discuss ebikes, from home grown to high-tech.

Front wheel drive vs rwd

Old 09-01-21, 05:09 PM
  #1  
XxHaimBondxX
Junior Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Mar 2013
Location: Albany, NY
Posts: 23

Bikes: 26" Huffy RedRock Aluminum, Schwinn Stingray electric conversion

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 7 Post(s)
Liked 4 Times in 3 Posts
Front wheel drive vs rwd

I'm building a new bike, received the motor, but it's a fwd instead of rear. Is it worth the hassle exchanging it? It's a 1500 watt, 48 volt set up. Would there be an issue with traction? The other thing is that the front wheel can't be easily removed for easy transport, but I guess I can remove the rear wheel now.
XxHaimBondxX is offline  
Old 09-01-21, 06:12 PM
  #2  
andychrist
Devil's Advocate
 
andychrist's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
Location: NYC & Mid Hudson Valley, NY
Posts: 484

Bikes: Fuji Del Rey, Bacchetta Giro 20, RANS Stratus XP XL, RANS Stratus XP XXL, RANS Stratus LE XL

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 77 Post(s)
Liked 49 Times in 38 Posts
Well you would need a super strong headset and steel fork with fender eyelets to support a pair of GrinTech TorqArms V2, to handle that kind of power from a front hub!

It’s not too difficult to remove a front wheel drive even with those torque arms installed — much easier than a rear. Can’t say whether traction might suffer on loose gravel or under slippery conditions, because in effect you’d have dual drive — just that the rear wheel would be relatively underpowered (obviously). I’m amazed by how well the 500W front drives perform on my two dual drive LWB recumbents, where those wheels are comparatively lightly loaded. On a standard upright with weight more evenly distributed it doesn’t make all that much of a difference where the drive is, AFAIK. Not to mention, the weight of a 1500W motor in front would certainly help shift the balance forward!

That said, have never actually heard of anyone performing a conversion with such a high wattage front drive. But as the company actually sells it, there must be some legitimate use cases, one would think.

BTW, I take it this is for a fat bike?
andychrist is offline  
Likes For andychrist:
Old 09-01-21, 07:51 PM
  #3  
Doc_Wui
Senior Member
 
Doc_Wui's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2015
Location: Chicago Suburbs
Posts: 1,266

Bikes: GT Transeo & a half dozen ebike conversions.

Mentioned: 4 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 312 Post(s)
Liked 176 Times in 127 Posts
They were selling those big DD motors in front and rear drive versions when I converted my first ebike in summer of 2015. However, I wanted the freewheeling of a geared motor, and all the veterans suggested rear drive as better/safer for the newbie. Too easy to rip out alloy forks with a strong motor.

As I gained some experience, I did put a 250W motor on a 20" bike with alloy forks, The bike had a sweet 8 speed cassette and trigger shifter, and I didn't want to lose it, I used double torque arms, and this year I finally found a steel fork to replace the alloy. I feel safer.

Also this year, I came across an inexpensive 500W front motor/wheel/tire (used) for 45 bucks, and I put that on a bike that also had steel forks, What is in common with both bikes is tire slip when starting out on loose surfaces, or wet pavement, especially when I hook up a trailer that weighs around 75 pounds with load. It it were wet leaves, I'd probably fall over, but I've been wary of wet leaves ever since I almost fell on a motorcycle years ago..

On both bikes, I used torque arms or torque plates. I used to mark the nuts with ink on the first bike, and they never moved. With the 500W motor, because the cable did not go thru the axle, I was able to use a torque wrench to set the axle nuts. I did a long search, but found nothing definite. It seems like one bike maker tells his customers to go 25 ft-lbs. Seems light to me, but in truth, it was more than what I was doing on all my bikes with a 10 inch 17mm wrench.

I'd still suggest to the OP that he switch it to the rear. 1500W, even if it's only a peak number, is a lot of force to put on a fork,
Doc_Wui is offline  
Likes For Doc_Wui:
Old 09-01-21, 11:05 PM
  #4  
2old
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2014
Location: socal
Posts: 3,416
Mentioned: 8 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 675 Post(s)
Liked 464 Times in 354 Posts
I had a 350w, 36V front hub system and really enjoyed it as an errand bike and off road where I "learned" to weight the front wheel when ascending pretty steep hills. However, I agree with DW that 1500w is too much for a front hub. Plus the ramifications of a failure could be astronomical.
2old is offline  
Likes For 2old:
Old 09-02-21, 09:09 AM
  #5  
chas58
Senior Member
 
chas58's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2010
Location: Michigan
Posts: 4,815

Bikes: too many of all kinds

Mentioned: 35 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1131 Post(s)
Liked 397 Times in 319 Posts
Agreed. don't do it. I wouldn't go above 250-350 watts on the front (actually, I wouldn't do it at all). The front fork is not designed for this torque at all. If that motor spins in the dropouts and breaks the dropout, you are going to the hospital. That is assuming you don't have any traction problems. Sure, you may have traction 90% of the time, but higher power FWD put people in the hospital too often.
chas58 is offline  
Likes For chas58:
Old 09-02-21, 02:33 PM
  #6  
XxHaimBondxX
Junior Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Mar 2013
Location: Albany, NY
Posts: 23

Bikes: 26" Huffy RedRock Aluminum, Schwinn Stingray electric conversion

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 7 Post(s)
Liked 4 Times in 3 Posts
Requested exchange just out of principle, plus all good points made here. It is a fat bike, with front suspension to soak up the bumps. My prior ebike was a Schwinn Stingray chopper and each bump chipped my teeth. For the next bike I'll try to procure a dual suspension fat bike.
XxHaimBondxX is offline  
Old 09-02-21, 06:33 PM
  #7  
2old
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2014
Location: socal
Posts: 3,416
Mentioned: 8 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 675 Post(s)
Liked 464 Times in 354 Posts
Excellent decision, especially with a suspension fork.
2old is offline  

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off


Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Contact Us - Archive - Advertising - Cookie Policy - Privacy Statement - Terms of Service - Do Not Sell My Personal Information -

Copyright 2021 MH Sub I, LLC dba Internet Brands. All rights reserved. Use of this site indicates your consent to the Terms of Use.