Does anyone out there use the bionx system for mountain biking? I am an experienced mountain biker but have developed a muscle disease and find it just beyond my capacity for "making" the tough sections. I am hoping only to use the 250 because it will fit my Santa Cruz superlite. But I am afraid that the 250 would be strong enough on the rocky sections...Please provide your experience.
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I don't have experience riding Bionx off road, but I do have experience with Bionx. I think the plastic throttle/control on the handlebars would be unlikely to survive more than a couple of crashes. I would also think about the extra motor/battery weight when it comes to balance and stopping. I don't think I'd be keen to try it. If you do please post your results!
"we must be the change we wish to see in the world"
Thanks for the reply. I am hoping not to crash too often. Unfortunately, even the 250lite will not fit my Santa Cruz superlite frame- So I am looking for a small frame style that will fit the 350. I hope I can find a 16 inch frame full suspension that will fit. I am short and light so I cant handle the typical big frame with the wide triangle opening to fit the battery on the water bottle brackets. Anyone has any ideas.
I've used my BionX 350 to get my old bones to the top of the trails for the last 4 months. Trails i use to shuttle to the top. It climbs like crazy. You will love it. Just hold on when you get to the top of a rise. It take mountain biking to an all new level.
Regarding the water bottle mounting system, I've installed a fair number of Bionx systems and have really been nervous about using the water bottle bosses. That battery seems like a lot of weight in that spot. My favorite method is to use a good strong rear rack that mounts to the frame with mounting screws at four points, usually a Topeak Explorer, and mount the battery slide to the rack. Sometimes I've had to do a little modification of the mounting screws in order to allow the battery to slide on and clear them, but it's not difficult. I've never had anything break loose and several of our kits have been on the bike for four years. I have kits on recumbents, so they are not subjected to the abuse of mountain biking, but there are a number of racks manufactured that are really tough, and the added weight is easily offset by the assist.
Last Spring (2010), I installed
Your message was cut short- please re-reply as I am interested in your experience. Alas I am still waiting to demo a mountain bike with the bionx. Cheers KIM
Sorry Kim, I was cut off earlier. I just wanted to say that I rode my Gary Fisher 700C bike with a new Bionx 350 PL system installed all summer last year. I rode it to work (and back) a distance of 58 km daily, about 3 times per week. I rode at top speed, averaging 25 km/h, which included rough roads. One day a car hit my bike broadside and knocked my rear wheel off the frame. I was lucky and both the bike and Bionx survived without damage...some scrathes though. After a few day trips of 100 km, the system is still intact and there is absolutely no sign of the battery shaking loose from the water bottle frame. I think the Bionx system, if properly installed, can endure mountain biking unless you are a really crazy driver.
The only concern I have is the battery replacement cost (about $1000) which will be needed after about 500 charges acording to the manual. Over the winter, I have designed a wireharness that allows me to attach a system of Ryobi batteries (6-18V, at a reduced cost of about $30 per battery). The auxillary batteries provide the power to the wheel while the bionx battery powers only the software. This should really increase my battery life and allow me to go on 200 km day trips next summer. Everything seems to work well in my trial tests and the road tests start in April when the snow begins to melt.
Good luck with your Bionx