Return to Vancouver and Thanks to our Global Friends

September 22, 2014 1:54:01 AM PDT

At the start of August, Justin and Anne-Sophie packed up a pair of electric Brompton bikes, some competition unicycles, and a small stash of clothes for what was nearly a 7 week world tour. This included joining the 17th international unicycle convention in Montreal, touring through France, Germany, and Switzerland to meet many of our European dealers face to face, attending the Eurobike show in Friedrichshaven, the Interbike show in Vegas, and finally spending a good week in the UK with some of our English comrades in crime. 

electric bromptons in france Pulling the trailerVisit to Swiss ebike OEM

So we’d like to publicly thank all those who made this such a great adventure. From Martin and Bobby for taming the beast at Unicon, to Philippe, Jean-Pascal, Andreas, Florian, and Reinhard for the accommodation through Europe. To Guillaume, Jules, and Tristan for such good company at Eurobike, and Stefan + the Radkutsche crew for the t-shirts and making our day. Miles you were a kind host with mind-blowing knowledge, and Steve it’s great to meet early pioneers. And finally to Ron, Tora, Paul, Ching, Wake, and everyone else at Interbike. We’ll hopefully see you next year.

Bobby on nuvinci geared electric unicycle Meeting with Andreas in Berne With Jules and his CNC'd Ebike at Eurobike Satiator vs Power Supply at Steve Labib's
The Product Showcase at Interbike Miles and AnSo on eMoulton Transverse Flux Motor With Stefan and Radkutsche

A lot of other progress has been taking place at Grin in the past 2 months too, and if you’ve browsed around our store site lately you may have some clues to what is coming. So stay tuned as we’ll be filling this blog site with a number of announcements in the coming weeks.. 

Posted By Justin Lemire-Elmore

Trip Analyzer Released

July 28, 2014 2:22:30 AM PDT

Our Ebike Trip Analysis Software is now posted live on our main website in the online tools section. We've included a number of new features since the last announcement, including the ability to label different segments of your trip then upload the results so you can share a link to the graphs and energy usage data.  Take part in the full discussion here.

 Sample of ebike trip analysis software

We're really happy to see where this is going. If you’ve been logging Cycle Analyst data from your ebike/EV trips and have interesting observations to share, then please let us know and send a link of the results. 

Posted By Justin Lemire-Elmore

ISIS Torque Sensing Bottom Bracket

July 27, 2014 3:02:45 AM PDT

A number of people with modern bikes have been hesitant to add a torque sensing bottom bracket to their ebikes because it meant changing over their cranksets to a square taper model as well.

Torque Sensing BB with ISIS Spindle

Well, at least there is one choice for a splined interface. The company NCTE has produced a torque sensor that has the same electrical specifications as the THUN devices, but which uses an ISIS spindle. We've got a 128mm spindle length model in stock for those with ISIS cranks keen to try it out. 

Posted By Justin Lemire-Elmore

Needless to say we had a pretty fun booth display and demo ebike fleet at the Vancouver Maker Faire last month. Thanks to all who came out to pay a visit and support the creative DIY and maker scene in town.

 

Heading out to Maker Faire by ebike caravan  Ebikes at 2014 Vancouver Maker Faire Departing from 2014 Maker Fair, John with Cargo Trike

This coming weekend is the annual VEVA Electrafest Show, featuring nothing but local electric vehicles, from little DIY e-scooters up to full sized commercial electric cars. We're not going to have a full booth presence, but Justin will certainly be there with the latest version of our weight sensing inline-motor electric longboard, and perhaps some other projects up his sleeve.

If you are in the Vancouverarea and have an ebike or EV project you want to show off, it's free and not too late to register for the show and include your vehicle in the mix! The event is at the Concord Pacific, just by science world, and conveniently not too far from our shop either. 

Posted By Justin Lemire-Elmore

Map of Vancouver Mini Maker Faire Layout


Our commute to Maker Faire this year won’t be nearly as epic as the 1800km journey last spring, but we hope the excitement is just as strong. This year we are proud to be not just an exhibitor but also a sponsor at the Vancouver Mini Maker Faire, happening at the PNE fairegrounds next weekend, June 7 & 8. We’ll have an outdoor “ebike eplayground” in the North West corner of the event and as always look forward to sharing grins with locals.  

Posted By Justin Lemire-Elmore

Spoke Calculator with Paired Holes

May 31, 2014 3:18:00 AM PDT

Enhanced Spoke CalculatorWe’ve finished a significant round of enhancements to our online ebike spoke calculator application to better serve the needs of people lacing hub motor wheels.

  • Dimensionally accurate real time drawing of the motor, rim, and selected lacing pattern, so you have confidence to see that the hub/rim choices are correct
  • Measurement of the spoke angle at the rim to indicate possible stresses at the nipple and threads.
  • Allowance of paired spoke holes. Many large diameter hub motors have spoke holes grouped in two rather than uniformly distributed, but there are few tools out there to help calculate the appropriate length.

 

Check it out. We've added a number of new motor sizes (like the Magic Pie3, Crysatlyte Crown, Heinzmann PRA etc.), and are open to add additional suggestions via the related endless-sphere thread

Posted By Justin Lemire-Elmore

Trip Analyzer for Cycle Analogger Data

May 31, 2014 3:14:00 AM PDT

Also on the web software front, we’re making progress on a web application to take information saved from the Cycle Analogger device and view both your route and energy usage statistics through interactive graphs and maps, all within your browser window.

 Cycle Analyst Analogger Trip Analysis Program

There is still a long way to go to hit all our desired features, but it’s worth having a look now if you’ve got logs of CA and GPS data and have been stumped on how best make use of it. Additional discussion is here

Posted By Justin Lemire-Elmore

Faster Small Parts Shipping through Amazon

May 31, 2014 3:07:00 AM PDT

Amazon Torque Arm Purchase

Shipping small parts from our shop in Canada to American destinations has always been a tad expensive, so we’re experimenting with using Amazon as a fulfillment warehouse better serve US customers. Currently all three of our torque arms are available now, with free shipping for amazon prime subscribers:

And if it works out well we’re start hosting other small Grin Tech items like our ebike lights and DC-DC converters too. 

Posted By Justin Lemire-Elmore

The last few weeks we’ve been in the midst of a full inventory transition with some of our product lines, and we apologize to those who’ve had difficulty getting all their kit parts together. This is all wrapping up and there is good news to speak of for those who have been patient.

Grinfineon Controller: Proportional Regenerative Braking.

All of our motor controllers are now running a newer control chip with a customized firmware for proportional regen. We’ve done this in a way that requires no extra hardware. If you have a V3 Cycle Analyst, the regen control is mapped to the otherwise unused 0.0 to 0.8V throttle signal range, giving you full control of the braking force and regen current through the Cycle Analyst. Without a V3 CA, you can use a regular ebrake lever to activate regen, and then use the throttle to modulate the intensity.

Grinfineon Controller, Full Throttle Sweep showing Regen and Fwds RecgionsProportional Regen Curve with Ebrake and Throttle Modulation

We’ve also improved the LED behavior so that you can tell if the controller is operating in sensored or sensorless modes while running, and tidied up the total connector bundle. At the moment, the 20A and 25A controllers are all available with this firmware. The larger 35A and 40A controllers are still in the midst of firmware testing and revisions, but should be available shortly.

eZee 5 LED Console

The latest shipment of eZee kits also includes a simpler 5-LED console for those who don’t require the full details of a Cycle Analyst. This device has been customized for full compatibility with any controller that has a CA plug, whether from an eZee kit or not, and it includes a DC power plug for running front headlights too.

 eZee LED ebike consoleLED Console Panel

The top row of LEDs show the approximate battery voltage, while the bottom row of LEDs is controlled via the up/down buttons to set the ebike power level via current limiting, much like with a V2 Cycle Analyst.  With the 25A eZee controllers, 1 LED = 5 amps, 2 LEDs = 10 amps, etc.

 

Batteries

18650 Cells in eZee BatteriesAll our recent stock of higher capacity eZee batteries are using Japanese Sony V3 cells as standard. While the Samsungs have worked reliably, their cycle life at higher discharge currents left a little to be desired and we’re hoping the highly regarded Sony cells yield better longevity. 

For those who found 10Ah wasn't quite enough, but 20Ah excessive, we've also got the Allcell batteries stocked in a 48V 13Ah pack with power cells, and in 35V 15Ah with regular energy cells. 

 

Posted By Justin Lemire-Elmore

Cycle Analyst Setup Software

May 16, 2014 4:24:00 AM PDT

Screen Shot of CA3 Setup UtilityWe’ve got our first software releases completed for the V3 Cycle Analyst, allowing you to set, load, and save all of the advanced CA settings through a computer connection, rather than working via the 2 button interface. This makes it easier to share preconfigured setup configurations and restore defaults just as easily. It also provides acess to OEM features such as masking out certain setup menu screens.

Windows and Linux Versions are available to download from our CA3 Information Page.  This requires you are updated to the V3 Prelim6 firmware. 

Posted By Justin Lemire-Elmore