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2018 Surly ECR Bafang BBS02-B 750W/48V Mid-Drive Build

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    #16
    Oh what fun it is to take a new ride out for a spin. I'm going to just leave the ground down left crank arm on it. Pedals fine and cruises in 4th nicely with a 5th tailwind gear without power. Pedals light and is super maneuverable. She weighed in right at 44lbs. for this XL frame with slightly heavier than a Rohloff 2000g Sturmey-Archer RS-RK5 5-speed IGH (a Rohloff's weight is stated at 1860g). So about 12-13lbs. of that is BBS02B and IGH. Probably another extra pound over typical weight in the Thudbuster seatpost and ISM Urbaine saddle. IIRC a 2018 Surly ECR XL fully built bought off the show room floor is about 31-32lbs.

    I always like to get a "less battery" weight, because everyone runs different size and makeup batteries, so their weight can vary widely.

    I also like to ride my builds as a pedal bike for a week or two before attaching the battery to get the bugs out and everything retightened before powering up.
    1st Build - Soma B-Side Belt Drive 3spd IGH (3K+ miles): https://electricbike.com/forum/forum...v-custom-build
    2nd Build - Electra Lux Alloy Cruiser 5spd IGH 29+ (SOLD) https://electricbike.com/forum/forum...iser-3-project
    3rd Build - Niner Jet 9: https://electricbike.com/forum/forum...lectric-assist
    4th Build - Surly ECR 5spd IGH 29+: https://electricbike.com/forum/forum...id-drive-build

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      #17
      After an initial ~15 mile ride and another ~20 ride in pedal form, everything worked so smoothly I went ahead a installed the rear rack and battery bag to power it up.

      The Surly’s frame cable mounts are so nice. They have three concave cable rests on each mount. This makes for super clean wire mounting using one of the three cable locations on each mount and one zip tie through the mount, not around the frame tube. Wiring up the battery, display and speed/cadence sensor was a piece of cake. Maybe things are just a whole lot easier after several builds, but it sure was simple on this Surly frame.

      Powered up the display and noted everything was zeroed out. This puzzled me, because this motor had about 800 miles on it before the mosfets failed in the controller. The Chinese retailer sent a new controller out and I installed it after the motor had sat for several months while I sold off the bike I removed it from, then reinstalled it on this Surly ECR build. This brings up a question that I posted in the General section regarding if the user data is stored in the controller or the display. Have to wait for knowledgeable responses to know for sure, but I’m guessing the controller. It is possible that the display zeroed itself out after sitting so long, but unlikely in my opinion.

      Anyway, I went through all the color display settings and set it up just like my Soma B-Side BBS02B that has over 3,000 trouble free miles on it now. Took her out for a spin and my grin was wide and sweet!

      At level 5 of 9 (my normal go to setting) with speed limit cutoff set to 30mph it cruises right at about 20mph in 5th gear as the power reduces to zero assist. This is just what I hoped for and should give good range at 20mph. At 4 of 9 it assists up to about 18mph before the assist reduces to zero. At that setting I should get killer range because once I’m up to speed it uses little to no power. Putting a full charge on it now and will go for a long powered up test ride tomorrow to see how she performs. Can’t wait to get out on the bike trails with it...
      Last edited by Rider; 1 week ago.
      1st Build - Soma B-Side Belt Drive 3spd IGH (3K+ miles): https://electricbike.com/forum/forum...v-custom-build
      2nd Build - Electra Lux Alloy Cruiser 5spd IGH 29+ (SOLD) https://electricbike.com/forum/forum...iser-3-project
      3rd Build - Niner Jet 9: https://electricbike.com/forum/forum...lectric-assist
      4th Build - Surly ECR 5spd IGH 29+: https://electricbike.com/forum/forum...id-drive-build

      Comment


        #18
        Did a 60 miler shakedown test ride after powering it up for the first time with the power levels set to 1-9, speed cutout at 30mph and tire size at 29” (guessing all the readings are a little low, as the Surly Extraterrestrial tires have a larger than normal 29” diameter). The ride went flawlessly. Cruises at about 20mph in 5th gear at 5 of 9 and the power slowly tapers off to zero assist just above that speed (no brick wall cutoff like the premanufactured torque sensor ebikes). Getting the settings just right for your planned speed and cadence is key to getting long range, as once you are up to your desired speed the motor uses very little watts. On this ride I kept my speed at about 20mph on the streets and riverbed bike trails. Once I hit the beach, I dropped my power setting to 4 of 9 and cruised at about 18mph. The data shows an average speed of 16.2mph including all stops. There was a good strong headwind for much of this ride, yet I started at 52.1 volts and ended at 44.5 volts.

        Took a couple pictures of the Surly triple cable mounts to show how you can use them for the main wire coming from the handlebars without having to run zip-ties around the top tube. Same for the lower left rear stay. The only place that requires zip-tie around the frame is the speed/cadence sensor, but it looks clean. I currently have three zip-ties around the seat tube, but those will eventually go inside a custom bolt-on full frame bag that uses the bottle mounts for attachment on the seat tube and down tube. Used a JANDD Mountaineering solid alloy rod rack and Topeak MTS strap-on bag that I already had to mount the battery for now.

        Surprisingly I had zero riding fatigue on this ride with the initial build positioning in my hands, feet, and bum. This is the most comfortable bike geometry I have ridden; partly because this frame is sized right for my 6'2" body and the geometry I'm sure. The SQlab 411 inner bar ends are absolutely wonderful! They were used for the majority of the ride in some way. Most of the time my thumb and fore finger wrap around them and my palm is on the bend in the Trailhead bars like they are designed to be used. I also found myself resting my palm on the bend of the Trailhead bars and simply extending my thumb over the top of the bar up against the inner bar ends. I’m really glad I bought these to test them out; they’re keepers!

        For what it is worth, I tried out the cheaper Jones Loop H-Bars for a time and found them very comfortable, but over time I determined that the 45* sweep was too much for best overall multiple uses. On top of that, the SG bars flexed way too much for me. This was especially apparent when I was making a right corner at 20mph on the street in my neighbor, when another bike rider popped out from behind a 6’ fence on the sidewalk from my right. He panicked and rolled right out into the street in front of me, as I got on my Shimano XT brakes super hard. The SG Jones bars turned into noodles while the XT brakes did their job like no other brakes I have used. I (and he) got really luck I just caught his rear wheel behind his rear axle. He almost went down, stumbling off his bike, but holding on to one grip. I stayed up to pedal on and circled back. Things would have been much worse for him if I didn’t have Shimano XT brakes or hit him anywhere in front of his rear axle. Shimano XT brakes 10+! Jones SG Loop H-Bar 5. Sold off the Jones SG after that. Hopefully the more expensive models don’t have the flexing issue. The new Surly Moloko steel bars look promising, although at twice the weight, but the Fouriers Trailhead 7050 alloy bars with comfort bend are currently the handlebar for me.
        Attached Files
        Last edited by Rider; 1 week ago.
        1st Build - Soma B-Side Belt Drive 3spd IGH (3K+ miles): https://electricbike.com/forum/forum...v-custom-build
        2nd Build - Electra Lux Alloy Cruiser 5spd IGH 29+ (SOLD) https://electricbike.com/forum/forum...iser-3-project
        3rd Build - Niner Jet 9: https://electricbike.com/forum/forum...lectric-assist
        4th Build - Surly ECR 5spd IGH 29+: https://electricbike.com/forum/forum...id-drive-build

        Comment


          #19
          Second shakedown ride included some dirt trails and climbing. Rode about 7 miles from my house to a local trailhead and did the 11-12 mile loop, then rode back to my home for a about 26 miles total. The good vibes continue on this big wheeled monster eSurly. The gearing handled the trails well with 4th being the highest gear when in the dirt. 1st gear climbed the short steep hills that tests my lungs ever time even with the electric assist; I still have to work hard when climbing, it's not a free ride. I aired down the tires a bit just by feel. The tires and Thudbuster absorbed the bumps and hits well. The worst section was some large roots in the middle of a climb. That always takes some extra skill on a hardtail compared to a full squishy, but I rocked through it in 1st with good balance and this responsive frame geometry that handles technical areas wonderfully.

          A couple things came up on this ride. The first I noticed when at a stop light on the way home. In glancing down at the motor it appeard to be covered in hot gooey bubble gum. Thought I must have ran over a blob of someone's disgarded chew (damn it!). It was gooey and sticky when I touched it with my finger. After the initial anger wore off, as I rode on I thought to myself maybe I can put some ice on it tomorrow and it would flake off easily like people do when they get gum in their hair.

          The next morning I also noticed a drippy white patch on my rear tire at the rim bead. These tires were installed with Finish Line's new "Life of the Tire" tubeless sealant and it appeared to do its' job on a rim leak (possibly when I hit those big roots on the climb, who knows?). Looking back at the motor gum, it seemed to brush off with my hand for the most part now that it was dry. Maybe the dirt layer all over my bike from the dusty trails didn't allow it to stick well (?).

          Then it stuck me. Maybe that gum is sealant! I inspected the front tire and sure enough I found a whitish patch that could be the sealant doing its' job on a puncher or the rest of the gum left on the tire. After further inspection, I think it is tire sealant and the stuff on my motor was deposited when it came squiring out as the puncher sealed itself. I'm new to the tubeless game and really hope this new lifetime sealant works well, because I would hate to dismount tires and replace the non-lifetime sealant every 3-6 months. What a PITA! Despite all the negative reviews of this new Finish Line sealant, I have to say it appears to have worked for me this time around.

          The other issue is the chainring clearance. I used an thin 1/8" aluminum single speed cassette spacer with the inner bumps filed down a little for a snug fit over the BBS02B slide in BB casing. It appears the motor housing and chainring are a little bit closer to the frame than it was when I assembled it. Maybe that thin aluminum washer wasn't the best choice for that application; it may have compressed some (?). I used what I had at the time. I will procure a proper BB thick alloy spacer or SS one in the future. Right now I will monitor this closely and double check the BB nut for good torque.

          All in all this bike rocks my world. Researching full frame bag options now and a possible move of the battery to inside it, mounted on a bracket that attaches to the seatpost and down tube water bottle bosses...
          Attached Files
          Last edited by Rider; 4 days ago.
          1st Build - Soma B-Side Belt Drive 3spd IGH (3K+ miles): https://electricbike.com/forum/forum...v-custom-build
          2nd Build - Electra Lux Alloy Cruiser 5spd IGH 29+ (SOLD) https://electricbike.com/forum/forum...iser-3-project
          3rd Build - Niner Jet 9: https://electricbike.com/forum/forum...lectric-assist
          4th Build - Surly ECR 5spd IGH 29+: https://electricbike.com/forum/forum...id-drive-build

          Comment


          • Rider
            Rider commented
            Editing a comment
            It turns out my first thoughts were right. I wanted to pick all the goo out of the tire tread to see if anything was stuck into the tire. I didn't find anything and the goo had a nice apple scent to it, so it must be discarded gum on hot pavement that I ran over and not sealant. Some people are pigs!

          #20
          Thanks for a great article Rider. I’ll be revisiting it often in the near future as I,m eyeing off something similar for my next build project.

          Comment


          • Rider
            Rider commented
            Editing a comment
            Happy to help. Sharing information we all learn is what "grassroots" sports/hobbies is all about. I look forward to reading your build.

          #21
          Today while swapping tires on my Soma B-Side again, I measured their width once installed on the specific ID rim used. While I was at it I also measured the Surly Extraterrestrial 29" X 2.5" tire on this bike mounted to Velocity Dually i39 rims. They measured over 2.6"!

          2.4" to 2.6" seems to be the width many MTB riders are zeroing in on as what they think has the best overall ride feel and control.
          1st Build - Soma B-Side Belt Drive 3spd IGH (3K+ miles): https://electricbike.com/forum/forum...v-custom-build
          2nd Build - Electra Lux Alloy Cruiser 5spd IGH 29+ (SOLD) https://electricbike.com/forum/forum...iser-3-project
          3rd Build - Niner Jet 9: https://electricbike.com/forum/forum...lectric-assist
          4th Build - Surly ECR 5spd IGH 29+: https://electricbike.com/forum/forum...id-drive-build

          Comment

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