Removing Bionx 20mph speed limit

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davew's picture
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I need to correct the posting I made about the Bionx kit a few weeks BH (before hacker). It turns out that the maximum speed feature can be disabled. As a matter of fact I was doing it. I was just too unfamiliar with the kit to perceive the difference. I figured that with speed limitation turned off I could use the throttle to go faster than 20 mph. With the throttle alone I can just barely get the speed over 20 mph whether the speed limiter is on or not. This makes sense given the size of the motor and the battery characteristics. As I have been riding the Bionx I have gradually stopped using a throttle and started using the automatic assist feature more. This is probably what the designers had in mind anyway. It just took me awhile to get used to it.

After getting used to it, however, I began to notice one annoying feature. The bike and I would peddle steadily up to 19 mph and then it was like I hit a wall. I would need to increase my effort many times just to get up to 21 or 22 mph. This was especially annoying if I was feeling particularly frisky or had a tail wind. It was like being in a car where the driver can't stop fiddling with the throttle. There was a constant acceleration and deceleration at the speed hovered right around 20 mph. After a surprising number of weeks of this I suddenly remembered the maximum speed disable feature. I tried it again, and voilà! Now I can peddle steadily up to 22 or 23 miles an hour, and probably faster if I really wanted to push it. This being snow and ice season pushing it is going to have to wait for a few months.

The instructions are:
Press and hold the mode and chrono buttons for about three seconds
The display should show four zeros. Use the a-key to change the first numeral to a 3.
Use the mode key to get to the next numeral.
Repeat until the code entered his 3773. At this point, the display should show Max alternating with Speed on the LCD. The number displayed should be 1. Use the g-key to change this to a zero. Use the mode key to get out of the menu. Your maximum speed problems should be a thing of the past.

I will post a more complete review of my Bionx kit in the near future.

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Does the motor act like a

Does the motor act like a generator when you drop the throttle? Regenerating e-bike systems will usually limit you to 5 MPH over their top speed because the electricity they regenerate can not be absorbed fast enough by the batteries. What then happens is, this extra electricity is turned into heat (in the batteries and elsewhere in the system) and you hit that "wall" in which it takes a ton of effort to maintain the high speed with pedaling (or rolling down a steep hill).

My bike will only do 40 MPH tops no matter how much effort or steep the hill is because the NiMH batteries can't absorb the recharge fast enough and start acting like a brake. If I cut the main switch to the batteries, then the "wall"is removed and it can go as fast as physics will allow then.

Some may see it as a dis-advantage, I kind of like the "engine braking" effect. Mainly because steep hills and other factors I wouldn't want to go over 40 MPH on my e-bike anyway.

Sounds like that code may "enable" or "disable" some feature that put in the braking effect. Say for example, when you hit 20 MPH, it switches into a massive regen mode to prevent the bike from rolling faster than 20 MPH (or as much as the batteries can take). Perhaps that code has disabled that feature so it's just a free wheel the entire time.

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Thanks for the tip davew. I

Thanks for the tip davew. I have been looking for the info to disable the speed limiter, but was unable to get it from the dealer I purchased the kit from or from bionx. I'm sure other bionx owners will find this thread very helpful. I've been riding my Mu SL dahon folder with a bionx kit and I've experienced the same wall effect above 20 miles per hour. What seems to be happening is when you go above 20 miles per hour, it goes into generation 1 mode so it takes alot more pedal effort to go above 20 mi per hr, but the added benefit is a good work out and longer range due to the regen. On my last ride, I was able to ride eighty miles on mostly flats and a long 1 mi long 20 to 25 degree grade hill on assist level 4 with 1 1/2 bar left on the battery indicator after the ride. I followed your tip this morning and disabled the speed limiter and will be giving it a test ride to the Santa Monica, CA , ALT CAR EXPO. If anyone is interested, it's this weekend Dec 9 & 10 at the Barker Hanger in Santa Monica, Calif. http://www.altcarexpo.com/pre-events.html.

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No wall

Dennis got it right. The motor isn't fighting you above 20 miles an hour, is just not helping. The difference between the motor helping and not helping feels like you're hitting wall. Especially as the effect comes and goes over the space of a second or two. When the motor does go into regeneration mode I can feel it and hear it. It produces a noticeable vibration that travels up through the spokes.

I assume by leaving the speed limiter off and running in a relatively high assist level that the battery duration would be shortened. I try to make allowance for this by only using an assist level of 1 on longer trips. Most of my trips, however, are 6 miles or less so this really isn't a consideration. I still haven't taken the battery below half on the charge indication.

Right now I'm off to get groceries. It's rib night!

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Dave you are right, the

Dave you are right, the motor does not go into regen above 20 mph. It simply stops assisting. I rode my bike for about 38 miles yesterday with the speed limiter off at assist level 4 and full throttle. I found the 350W motor of the PL350 bionx kit is unable to push a 20 inch wheel over 20 mph without pedaling. The average speed for the trip was about 17 mph and by the end of the trip I only had 1 bar left on the charge indicator. It's not as fast as the carbon road bikes that were passing me on the bike path but when they hit a slight incline, I was able to catch up to them with alot of pedaling, even though I was riding a folding bike that weighs 39 lbs and I was carrying a 4 lb backpack. I am still very pleased with the performance of the kit, especially the regen settings that are very useful for conditioning training and the effort is not wasted, it charges the battery!

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Re: Removing Bionx 20mph speed limit

I was wondering if you have the 24v system. I hit that 20mph wall as well last summer when I first got my bionx system. It was annoying cause you're so used to the assistance. Then it cuts out at 20mph and you realize you don't have Lance Armstrong legs anymore. So I messed around and figured out the 3773 code as well. But even with the limit turned off, I did notice that I wasn't getting the speed increase I expect at 20+ mph. And even though I would put a lot of effort into it, the assistance bar would only be 1 or 2 bars at the high speeds. If it trully can add 250W to the 200W my lets were giving, then 450W should get me at least 28mph. But instead, I would hit limits the same limits you're seeing -- around 22-23mph -- with a steady effort.

Eventually, I found out that the controller needs a higher voltage in order to go faster. There's a V/RPM constant for permanent magnet machines and at 24V which is what I have, I was hitting the max speed of the motor. To reach a higher top speed, I would need more voltage. So I was wondering if you have the 24V or 36V system.

One test that was interesting was putting my bike on a stand and turning on the throttle. With the throttle on and the wheel freely spinning and with the speed limit off, I found that the wheel only went 25mph. So that tells me that by the time you reach 25mph (on a 24V system), you're completely on your own.

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Re: Removing Bionx 20mph speed limit

I have the 36V system so extra volts should not be a problem. My guess about the relatively low top speed has more to do with the motor. In my experience motors that deliver a lot of torque on the low end, like BionX and Lashout, don't have very good high-end speeds. Motors that are very low torque at low speeds, like my Wilderness Energy, keep pushing you up to about 30mph with some rider effort. I'm no EE, but I have read plenty of articles in this forum and others that relate motor construction to performance characteristics. I can cruise at about 25mph on my BionX on dry pavement (which I haven't actually seen in two months.) This is fast enough for me.

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BionX and Wilderness Energy

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Re: Removing Bionx 20mph speed limit

I'm a newbie to Bionx (Bionx 350, Lithium Battery, Electra Townie 700c, total weight with battery 52 lbs) but, I have years of experience with a Giant Lite (Twist) Pedelec which has a bottom bracket motor. I love the Bionx so far but there is one major difference. Acceleration from a stop is less than I prefer. It seems the motor doesn't kick in until I'm going at least 5 mph and I don't get the subjective impression that the acceleration is proportional to the force I exert on the pedals until its going at least 10 mph. From 10-18 miles acceleration lags by a moment from when I press harder on the pedals but is acceptable. I can increase low speed acceleration by using the throttle so my guess is the motor is capable of helping more at low speeds but is just set to conserve the battery or set to start slow for safety reasons.

So here is question 1: If there is a control feature to eliminate the TOP speed of motor assistance, is there also a controller (software) code to get the motor to respond more quickly at lower speed, or a control feature to increase the sensitivity of the strain gauge that produces the "pedelec" effect?

Second question: How did the genius that figured out the 3773 code find the hidden code? I entered 3774 and the screen changed to the following: In the left botton corner appeared the letters "Pr" just above the letters "on" and on the right the number "1".

I was to chicken to change the number, but clearly there are other codes hidden in the controller. Maybe some anonymous but friendly Bionx engineer is reading this and would like to help his customers customize their bikes.

Anybody else have any experience with hacking the Bionx controller?

Macred5

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Re: Removing Bionx 20mph speed limit

So here is question 1: If there is a control feature to eliminate the TOP speed of motor assistance, is there also a controller (software) code to get the motor to respond more quickly at lower speed, or a control feature to increase the sensitivity of the strain gauge that produces the "pedelec" effect?

I find that merely setting up the level of assistance, A1, A2, A3, A4 increases the amount the motor helps at all speeds including just when starting. There is a little lag, first while you get up to 2 miles an hour and then about a second before the motor gets up to power, but then I feel a healthy shove. If you really want a kick in the pants us the throttle.

That being said, I think your idea is right. The designers try to limit the total power output to conserve battery life. The number of bars show roughly the amount of power the motor is applying. It seems to take a lot of bars to get me from stopped to 5mph if I'm not helping much.

Second question: How did the genius that figured out the 3773 code find the hidden code?
I posted it here, but I didn't find it. It popped up a few places on the web, but it was always just this code. I have never seen a list of all codes.

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BionX and Wilderness Energy

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Re: Removing Bionx 20mph speed limit

Thanks to davew (and others) for the replies.

Sounds like my Bionx motor responds just like yours (davew). I only have a few hours of experience on the bike, so far. Overall I am very pleased, but I feel slightly frustrated when crossing a street from a dead stop in traffic. I get it rolling, pedal hard and press on the throttle fully, but there is still is less acceleration then I would like. Perhaps this is part of my adaptation curve for the bike/motor. It is certainly less accelerating power then I've experienced on my 5 year old Giant Lite (bottom bracket motor) and less than a recent test drive I had on a new Tres Terra Europa (rear wheel Hiezmann greared hub Motor). Maybe both of those motors are not a fair comparison to a brushless nongeared hub motor. Anyway, the Bionx battery has pretty good capacity so I would gladly trade some distance endurance for more powerful acceleration. It would be nice for the engineers to allow the user to make the trade-off decisions if great acceleration is possible.

Even with the limitation I loved the Bionx setup, which is really great when cruising at 18-20 mph.
macred5

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Re: Removing Bionx 20mph speed limit

Awesome I found you all. I just got a Montague Paratrooper folding bike, with the top of the line Bionx battery and motor. Total weight is 42lbs. I'm 185 lbs and Live in San Francisco, and cannot climb a 20 percent hill at high power and low gear. That's SF I guess. I'll try your speed adjustment tips. One question.... Is there another code that adjusts for the the size of the wheels? For example if I had a 24" wheell but set it for a 16" wheel, whould it speed up the top MPH? Don

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Re: Removing Bionx 20mph speed limit

You can download a pdf of the Bionx manual from their web page:

http://www.greenspeed.us/bionx_motor_bike_kit.htm

(Look for Bionx User's Manual toward the bottom of the page).

To answer your question, the menu code is 2005 where you enter the wheel's circumference in mm. So for a 16" wheel it would be: 1277. I think someone tried this and it didn't get them more power or speed. It did play hob with the speedometer and odometer, though.

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Re: Removing Bionx 20mph speed limit

I noticed Don's comment about hill-climbing ability (or lack thereof) with the BionX system, and I'm wondering if any of you have any experience with how well the BionX system works with a heavy rider. I'm considering the same bike (Montague Paratrooper with the most powerful BionX configuation) that Don has, but I'm concerned it won't be sufficient to help me get my 260 lbs up the hill to my house. The climb is about 450 feet in the space of a mile with varying grades, some fairly steep.

I'd love to hear about the experiences of any heavy electric bike riders out there and what systems might work best for those of us who struggle with gravity more than others. ;)

Thanks in advance for any insights!

Rick

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Re: Removing Bionx 20mph speed limit

Do you know the grade %? I may be able to compare it to the SF streets I use. Also if you place a motor in front and back you will climb high. I guess if there was a 1000W motor and 48Volt battery that that would work. Never found anything that powerfull without being a very heavy bike (130 pounds).

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Re: Removing Bionx 20mph speed limit

I've been using my 36volt, Li BionX system since last August for a long commute to work. It's now mounted on a new 22" KONA, Hoss Deluxe. Since I'm 6'3", 285, I appreciate the larger frame size and extra strength Kona has built into this particular frame. With the BionX system installed, those hills are just not as steep, or intimidating, as they once were. I had to walk them before as it was just too much even in the lowest gear.

Along with a few 3 to 4 % grades up a few hundred feet, there are a couple of real killer hills around my area that are even tough to walk down, let alone up. I've never been able to handle them without the BionX. But....., in low gear, on level 4 assist, I've never walked my bike up a hill since.... Best of all, I'm no longer icing my knees after a hard ride --- It really takes the edge off! (not 25 anymore either... )

The speed limit governor has been recently removed on my unit. I find this a bit of an advantage, particularly when I'm in the groove and just cruising on the flat. It's now easy to "take a break" by pressing the throttle control which easily maintains speed at 20+ mph without peddelling. Hills, or a steady grade, will definately task the system unless you use your gearing properly and work as well.

If you have the chance to demo one of these systems on a hill like you described, I think you're going to be pleasantly surprised...

Oh yes, I get about 25 to 30 km per charge leaving it pretty much on level 2 all the time....

Cheers,

Larry

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Battery life

Hello all - the Bionx kit looks very attractive and I'm itching to electrify a bike and get rolling!
But, given some of the talk around the web about rapid Li-ion battery degradation I'm a little hesitant to throw down the extra $400 for the Li-ion battery. The lithium battery has supposedly been out for more than a year - has anyone owned one of these for long enough to feel confident that its holding up (or to see capacity degradation) ?

If the Bionx system wasn't so "closed" it would seem the best route would be to build up an A123 battery pack in the form factor of my choosing and save some $$.

Thanks,
Matt

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Re: Removing Bionx 20mph speed limit

I've been riding my LiIon Bionx now nearly daily for almost a year and I have not seen any change in the capacity or power. I am treating it very nicely. I charge inside during the winter. Now that it is summer I have the charger set to come on at 3 am to catch the coolest part of the day. Someone in the old vforum said that LiIon benefits from being babied so I figured what the heck

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Re: Removing Bionx 20mph speed limit

Thanks for the info - still making up my mind but Bionx is looking more and more like the way to go.
Just gotta dig up a suitable "host" bike.
Matt

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Re: Removing Bionx 20mph speed limit

I already disabled the 20mph limiter, but since this looks like the general Bionx thread...

I notice that the Bionx motor sometimes cycles off/on every time the crank passes through the "deadspot." I presume that this is due to the fact that there is no torque on the freewheel at that time. First, has anyone else noticed this? And second, does anyone think that the Rotor Crank setup would cure the phenomenon?

http://www.rotorusa.com/s1-rs4xrd3.shtml

Mike Lewis

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Re: Removing Bionx 20mph speed limit

Quote:

I notice that the Bionx motor sometimes cycles off/on every time the crank passes through the "deadspot.

I haven't noticed this. The controller has some logic in it to smooth out the inputs. Mine takes about 1.5 seconds to stop pushing once I stop pedaling unless I hit the brakes. If I pedal very softly sometimes the motor will cut in and out, but this only happens when I am practically coasting.

There are some problems that can happen if the angle that the motor is held at the wrong angle within the forks, but I don't remember what the symptoms are.

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Re: Removing Bionx 20mph speed limit

I've ordered my 700c sized li-Ion set-up two+ weeks ago for my hybrid road bike,

Will the extra diameter wheel give me more speed than mountain bikes when we disable the speed limiter?

Woo Hoo, looking forward to this new technology & like this forum. Yeah I'm a newbie :)

E-bike platforms so far:
36 v geared Hienzmann frnt wheel dr (6yrs old)
36 V 350-watt Bionx-li-on hybrid bike (new)

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E-bike platforms so far:
36 v geared Hienzmann frnt wheel dr (6yrs old)
36 V 350-watt Bionx-li-on hybrid bike (new)

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Re: Removing Bionx 20mph speed limit

HEY thanks to all who inputed. i got my Bionx 250 kit, a couple of weeks ago, i was laceing it onto a 20" rim for my recumbent it took way to long to order so i got the stuff custom cut,
now its all together and i went on my first test ride. first thing i did was remove the speed limit 3773, then i set it to my wheel size, 1596 or whatever, then i carryd the beast down the stairs and to the drive. :) i keep up with my buddie and my leg is not killing me, (im still recovering from big cut[glass], and acl severd, achillies tendon) thats pain. surgury and painful recovery, i used to ride alot. i was a courrier for 5 years. i cant evin ride a regular bike the recumbent barley, so this bionx is a really nice eddition,

Anyway, i hit 44 km/h several times in med hills, i went faster but my controller is mounted in a hard to see spot so glancing at it at speed is hard, im gonna take some pics next ride hopefully.

back light is great for nite riding and regen break is great for general stoping, with no break pad wear, average speed feels in the 20s , ill have to doo more testing. i cant wait for solar cells at 35% peace.

LWB USS 250bionx dream

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Re: Removing Bionx 20mph speed limit

I am new to this forum so hope this is the right placed to post my questions. First , thanks for all member contributions re- Bionx systems. Very informative & stimulating dialogue .I am planning on purchasing the PL250 package (incl Ni-mh battery ) with throttle. I primarily commute to work ( 12 k round trip , no hills , only strong winds one way & exceptional tails winds the other ).Lets say max of 80k per week. I cycle year round on a 26" Giant sedona LX. Winters in Canada ( Saskatchewan ) can hit -35 Deg C ( -40 C = -40 F )for short periods so batteries can take a kicking. From others experiences with the Bionx , am I buying a adequate system for my needs ? I am 165 lbs , 54 yrs old and in good shape (touch wood !!).

Thanks to all !

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Re: Removing Bionx 20mph speed limit

I'm new here, just to let you know.
I've read most of this thread, and I think that a speed limiter / charging may not be all that is going on here. Take a look at http://www.ebikes.ca/simulator/ and you may see that this is built right into the physics of how these motors operate. I see that a 408 motor [probably similar to yours] has a peak efficiency at about 20MPH and rapidly drops to zero at 23MPH. The sweet spot for these things for power is between 10 - 15MPH.
These are permanant magnet motors, and as such, turn into generators if still connected to a resistance [your battery].

dc

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Re: Removing Bionx 20mph speed limit

Thunder Road wrote:

From others experiences with the Bionx , am I buying a adequate system for my needs ? I am 165 lbs , 54 yrs old and in good shape (touch wood !!).

I believe so. I have never exposed the battery pack to that extreme cold before (or the rest of the electrics for that matter.) In the worst of the winter I store my bike inside during the day and in a garage at night. The battery pack always stays inside. I figure the pack has enough thermal mass that it is not going to cool down that much on the 20 minute ride home.

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Re: Removing Bionx 20mph speed limit

Thought I'd share first impressions of a new Bionx setup.

Just got in the very first day of e-biking to work with a PL-350 system mounted on a used, reasonably cheap Diamondback MTB. Cruised to work virtually sweat-free, even in the rather warm Arizona AM. (side note: To avoid previous "sweaty back" experiences, I decided to use a panier to carry everything.)

Gotta say the Bionx system works quite smoothly. Pedelec mode feels great, almost too much power in the highest assist mode. Not sure how to describe it, but the burst of power you get everytime you increase pedal pressure is quite motivating. Finding I have to pay closer attention to what I'm doing as it is very easy to get moving fast when sometimes I shouldn't. Throttle is definitely nice to have at times - though using it makes one feel a little "guilty" about chewing up the battery.

I'd agree with other observations that even with the software limitation removed, the motor seems to top out around 22-23 MPH. Haven't played with tire pressure, wind drag, etc to see if more speed is possible. Also, the lower gear ranges on my "host" MTB don't really lend themselves to running fast. Definitely the high speed loss of power is much less abrupt and easier to deal with when the system hits its "natural" limit vs software limit.

On Saturday,the bike was able to do about 35 miles of assisted riding on mostly-flat terrain. It was not an economical ride as I used a mix of assist modes 3, 2 and full-throttle to push things a little and/or to rest in the heat. Riding was so much fun that I stayed out much longer than intended - temp was up to 110F by the time I got back ! Battery had not quit, but it was down to the last charge status "bar".
The system churned along fine for the whole ride except that the console froze about a mile from home when the battery was down to 1 or 2 "bars". Don't know if it was the heat or the low battery or something else. A quick unplug+replug of the cable was enough to restore function (whew). Don't know if anyone else has seen this...

Really the only setup issue I've faced was the magnetic brake sensor placement - if it slips out of position you are suddenly stuck in regen mode. Surely tape or tie-wraps will stabilize this once I'm happy with the "final" placement.

All in all, my short experience with the Bionx system has been very positive - a definite recommend.
Thanks again to the forum members for thier input!

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Re: Removing Bionx 20mph speed limit

According to the Bionx youtube/battery posting they are now offering a Sony Lithium manganese (sp) battery pack that has 1000 recharge cycles almost twice that of Li-ion, and faster energy discharge rate. Also on youtube they have a cut-away view and demonstartion of thier motor.
Too good to be true? Check it out for yourself
enjoy, Marc

-------------------------

E-bike platforms so far:
36 v geared Hienzmann frnt wheel dr (6yrs old)
36 V 350-watt Bionx-li-on hybrid bike (new)

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E-bike platforms so far:
36 v geared Hienzmann frnt wheel dr (6yrs old)
36 V 350-watt Bionx-li-on hybrid bike (new)

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Re: Removing Bionx 20mph speed limit

Mark IV wrote:

According to the Bionx youtube/battery posting they are now offering a Sony Lithium manganese

My googling skills must be weak. I found one video with comments where someone was asking if Bionx made LiMn, but I didn't see a definitive response. Can you post a link to what you saw? Then I cast my net farther to see if anyone else was talking about this. If Bionx is releasing a new battery technology they are being very hush, hush about it.

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BionX and Wilderness Energy

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Re: Removing Bionx 20mph speed limit

The link to bionx video for the cut-away view of motor, & the battery description is; www.itselectric.ca Or "youtube" with tag words "bionx motor"
The vids were posted only two weeks ago by "powerinmotion" along with other Bionx info, hope you find it okay, great view of motor inside, looks like about 24 coils to turn the motor.
My previous post was perhaps over enthusiastic, the battery is still a li-ion, just that they are using a manganese cathode instead of the other chemistry which escapes me now(cobalt?). And the cycles are 800 full 1000 half. Enjoy, because it's great eye candy.

-----------------------

E-bike platforms so far:
36 v geared Hienzmann frnt wheel dr (6yrs old)
36 V 350-watt Bionx-li-on hybrid bike (new)

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E-bike platforms so far:
36 v geared Hienzmann frnt wheel dr (6yrs old)
36 V 350-watt Bionx-li-on hybrid bike (new)

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Re: Removing Bionx 20mph speed limit

"looks like about 24 coils to turn the motor"

Wonder if you know how many magnets it has.

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Re: Removing Bionx 20mph speed limit

Hi,

Thanks for all the good info on this thread.

I very recently got a PL-350 I have put on my MTB. It has a threaded hub. I'd like to use an 8 speed freewheel if I can find a good quality one. I am a little leery of the SunRace 13-28 8 speed. Plan B is looking like a Shimano 11-28 or Nashbar 13-32 7 speed but I would sure like to keep the 8 speeds.

What is everybody using on these Bionx hub motors for gears?

Thanks in advance, and when I get my bike all finished up I'll post some pics, its kind of over the top : )

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Simply Car-free How to Pedal Toward Financial Freedom and a Healthier Life
How to Live Well Without Owning a Car Save Money, Breathe Easier, and Get More Mileage Out of Life
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