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Maximizing Riding Range

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    Maximizing Riding Range

    I’ve started using my BBSHD with Wolf Pack battery for multi-day touring, carrying a medium cargo load. So far, daily ranges up to 70 miles have worked out, still with some charge remaining.

    I use the least PAS possible, and cover about half the distance with no PAS. About a quarter of the distance is in PAS 1, and the remaining quarter above that on moderate hilly terrain.

    Question - has anyone figured out the most efficient way to split the effort between your own power and the motor to maximize distance. Does going slower in a lower gear with less PAS give you more range than a higher gear with more PAS? Obviously, PAS zero will get you the farthest, but otherwise is minimizing the PAS by going slower in a lower gear the most efficient? Any observations you’ve made will be appreciated.

    #2
    Slower is almost always more efficient.

    At a given speed, running the motor in its most efficient range, say half speed or above (?), helps minimize heat losses in the motor. So, having proper gear ratio for your speed is important, too. Not as important as going slower, though. Below 10 mph it's pretty negligible, aero drag I mean, but much faster, and the energy penalty starts to matter more and more.

    I think it's better to smoothly power along, than to gun it, then coast, too. But coast when you can. braking represents lost opportunity for range.

    Also, the slower you are going, the larger fraction of total energy comes from your own pedal input. That's a BIG effect if you are helping, and slow down the pace a bit.

    Tubless tires have less rolling resistance.
    Few thoughts.....
    Last edited by JPLabs; 08-21-2019, 01:39 PM. Reason: more better words
    Fabrication is fun! Build something today. Show someone. Let them help. Inspire and share. Spread the desire.

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      #3
      Thanks JPLabs. That confirms what I was guessing about the speed and gearing. Good point about the aero drag. High pressure in the tires is important too. I should have some new observations about all this after my 300 mile ride starting Friday.
      In July I did a 22 mile, 5000 foot climb (Hurricane Ridge in Olympic National Park), and made it to within a quarter mile of the top before running out of power. Mostly I was in PAS 2 to 4 (out of 9) and going 10-12 MPH, which I thought was pretty good! I probably could have made it all the way if I’d stayed in PAS 1 or 2 and speed 7 to 9 or so.

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        #4
        I think throttle can be more efficient than PAS, too. PAS hammers the current rather generously sometimes. With throttle, you can use less, for example slowing a bit on uphill then coasting down other side, whereas PAS will try to hold speed and 'floor it' more.

        Throttle isn't bad for range, it's the thumb that matters. Smart throttle assist can be way more efficient. So don't feel limited to PAS for efficiency. Throttle can add JUUUUUUUUUUST enough.
        Fabrication is fun! Build something today. Show someone. Let them help. Inspire and share. Spread the desire.

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        • AZguy
          AZguy commented
          Editing a comment
          That really depends on how the controller is setup... I used to do very poorly on PAS due to it just as you say - hammering the current, then backing off and we know that smooth and steady is more efficient. Once I setup all my PAS in constant current/power it's much more efficient than my wrist... Although I was often accused in my moto circles of having a medical condition in my wrist that didn't seem to be able to do much between WOT and nada =]
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