Regen braking on the front brake.

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ofx210p
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Regen braking on the front brake.

Having ridden motorbikes of every size and shape for the past 20 years the regen braking has been an interesting revelation for me.
However one thing i've noticed is that on occasion it doesn't slow you down quite enough and i find myself reaching for another method of stopping. If i use the front brake (which is the most natural for a biker) you tend to come off the brakes momentarily to grab the front brake. This obviously is slightly hairy sometimes. Grabbng the rear brake is actually a bad thing as its very easy to lock up the rear wheel and this can potentially be worse than anything else.

So whilst riding into work the other day i thought of something that I thought could work very well (albeit just a concept).

I understand that the throttle regen works on a signal, if i get this correct 45 +/-5 = neutral ; above 45 acceleration; below braking/deceleration

So, my thoughts are simply this, if i wanted to make the regen work off the front brake you would have to put a contact in the brake lever mechanism (or more than one in an arc) that essentially sent a signal on the canbus (of less than 40) to start braking and then as you squeeze the real hydraulic braking mechanism comes in. This would allow for regen for the first amount of squeeze and then progressively hydraulic action. Not only this but it would almost work like the linked hydraulics of some big tourers.

I realise that the signal is not simply a switch but would have to be synthesised correctly to be understandable by the canbus etc. Like i say - just a thought and conceptual idea.

Cheers

Chris

LeftieBiker
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Re: Regen braking on the front brake.

I suggested essentially the same thing to the people who sold me my ZEV. By squeezing the front brake and having rear regen come on at the same time as the front brake (I suggested regen only, not rear hydraulics as well) you get two wheel braking, regen, and a safer grip on the bars. I can think of virtually no normal situation in which you want front braking only, so why aren't manufacturers adopting this...?

kingcharles
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Re: Regen braking on the front brake.

I use my thumb to operate the regen and can grab the front brake with my fingers at the same time. With a bit of practice this makes perfect one hand braking. Also leaves my left hand for clutch work only on normal bikes.

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Aircon
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Re: Regen braking on the front brake.

Or you can do what I did which works perfectly....make the left lever the front brake. I was already used to braking with the left hand because my Aprilia scooter had linked front/back from the left lever. Makes the transition from regen to heavy braking seamless.

Magendanz
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Re: Regen braking on the front brake.

Agreed. I switched the brake levers after the awkward transition from regen to front brakes caused me to be unable to stop in time to avoid a collision. I was lucky that the consequences were only a broken turn signal lens and a rattled passenger, but it could have been much worse.

Switching them has made a huge difference, and for a cyclist like me having the front brakes on the left is perfectly natural. It's a safety mod that I'd suggest every VH-1 owner make as soon as they receive their bike.

tt-tronix
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Re: Regen braking on the front brake.

In my case my Vectrix slipped and I had a few scratches and a broken front light :-(

In Germany this modification (swapping the brake levers) has to be registered in the vehicles documents (German TÜV -> Technischer Überwachungsverein = Technical Supervisory Association) in order not to void your insurance. Maybe this has to be done in other countries too...

Tido

ofx210p
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Re: Regen braking on the front brake.

Some great thoughts there guys. Personally i'm not keen on swaping the brakes over simply because that goes against the convention of all the other motorcycles in the world. However i was trying out the one hand braking earlier tonight and that worked quite well although i found that i was using less regen that i would do using my whole hand

Cheers anyhow - certainly food for thought

R
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Re: Regen braking on the front brake.

Accordint to my experience, braking with regen and hydraulic is safer with the brake levers swapped. I swapped my brakes 3 years ago.

Domi422
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Re: Regen braking on the front brake.

I swaped my brakes too, did it when I bought the scooter.
Though I also use a traditional motorcycle, I have no trouble in changing my habits when I change of riding tool.

Le site des utilisateurs français (The French user's website) http://www.vectrix.fr/

Aircon
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Re: Regen braking on the front brake.

I can't see any downside, unless you're too dumb to remember you've made the change!

Plenty of times I'm on full regen with my right hand with my left hand hovering over the left lever (front brake) ready just in case and then, when needed, modulating the pressure to apply just enough brake to stop or slow as needed....remembering that ANY non regenerating braking is a waste!

Anyway, that's my experience with it so far. I thought it was ridiculously clumsy the way it was.

jdh2550_1
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Re: Regen braking on the front brake.

I suggested essentially the same thing to the people who sold me my ZEV. By squeezing the front brake and having rear regen come on at the same time as the front brake (I suggested regen only, not rear hydraulics as well) you get two wheel braking, regen, and a safer grip on the bars. I can think of virtually no normal situation in which you want front braking only, so why aren't manufacturers adopting this...?

One manufacturer is doing exactly this. Do you care to hazard a guess which one?

--

But, back on topic - I think in theory this would work (sending CAN messages) - but implementing it might be tricky. Do you insert another CAN node on the bus? If so, then how do you get the controller to recognize this ID? Or do you spoof the CAN message? In which case you need to determine how the regen controller will respond to duplicate messages. Or do you split the CAN bus and modify braking messages but pass through everything else? It might all work just fine - these are just some things to think about.

As far as swapping brake levers go - I think swapping is a terrible idea. For experienced riders it causes confusion (not what you want when trying to stop) and for newbie riders it creates a bad habit if they ever ride any other motor cycle or motor scooter. It creates a non-standard set of controls for the Vectrix.

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Remember: " 'lectric for local. diesel for distance" - JTH, Amp Bros || "No Gas.

mf70
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Re: Regen braking on the front brake.

I suggested essentially the same thing to the people who sold me my ZEV. By squeezing the front brake and having rear regen come on at the same time as the front brake (I suggested regen only, not rear hydraulics as well) you get two wheel braking, regen, and a safer grip on the bars. I can think of virtually no normal situation in which you want front braking only, so why aren't manufacturers adopting this...?

That almost precisely describes my XB-600. It uses dynamic braking, not regen, but the dynamic braking is engaged on the rear wheel at the same time the front wheel brake is applied. In good weather it works fine, but on sketchy surfaces (downhill on slush & ice) it leaves both wheels skidding at the same time. This is not a fun experience.

mark

Aircon
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Re: Regen braking on the front brake.

It would be a perfect scenario if it was like the Prius...pushing the brake pedal uses regen until you max out regen, and then it seamlessly starts using the discs.

mikemitbike
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Re: Regen braking on the front brake.

Hi, if the throttle uses a potentometer for the Signal it should be rather easy to overide it via a relais and a other resistor sending a "braking value", if the signal is generated by a hall sesr you must simulate a voltage value instead a resistro value which is quite tricky. As I use unrequently a normal motorcycle too, I don´t swap the frontbrake. I use regen with thumb and index-finger and use the other three fingers to operate the frontbrake. Ifter a short time you get use to it.

Greetings Mike

tt-tronix
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Re: Regen braking on the front brake.

AFAIK it is a hall sensor... ;-)

And by the way I wouldn't have a clear conscience manipulating the regen brake. Doing so would mean to manipulate the regen brake AND the trottle! Since this could be very dangerous and definitively voids your insurance.

If someone from the Vectrix designers is reading these lines:
Wouldn't it be better if the brake lever turns WITH the throttle grip? Just like the gear shift/clutch mechanism in a Vespa! This means that you can rest all fingers on the brake lever even when you use regen brake....

Just my 2 cents... ;-)

Tido

Mik
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Re: Regen braking on the front brake.

...
...

If someone from the Vectrix designers is reading these lines:
Wouldn't it be better if the brake lever turns WITH the throttle grip? Just like the gear shift/clutch mechanism in a Vespa! This means that you can rest all fingers on the brake lever even when you use regen brake....

Just my 2 cents... ;-)

Tido

That might be a way around the Vectrix patent on the throttle. Good idea!

IMHO throttles should work the other way around: Roll forward to accelerate and roll back to brake.

Regarding the brake swap: I prefer to leave it as is, but if I was to swap them, then I would also swap the electric brake sensors over. That way, the Ready>GO sequence would not work unless the rider is aware of the non-standard configuration. However, in a life-threatening situation that theoretical knowledge would probably give way to conditioned motor reflexes and the brake levers would get pulled according to the conditioning of the rider.

Of particular concern is the risk of pulling the left lever hard because it gets confused with the clutch. On a normal motorbike one would pull the clutch fully at the beginning of an emergency braking event. That move will be deeply engrained in a motorbike rider and would potentially have a disastrous outcome on a Vectrix.

This information may be used entirely at your own risk.

There is always a way if there is no other way!

Aircon
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Re: Regen braking on the front brake.

Of particular concern is the risk of pulling the left lever hard because it gets confused with the clutch. On a normal motorbike one would pull the clutch fully at the beginning of an emergency braking event. That move will be deeply engrained in a motorbike rider and would potentially have a disastrous outcome on a Vectrix.

I've actually done the reverse, to catastrophic effects. i.e. pulled the clutch on a motorbike confusing it for a rear brake.

I'd rather this than the routine fumbling that is having the brake on the rhs. Each to their own.

LeftieBiker
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Re: Regen braking on the front brake.

Few motorcycles have a high enough clutch lever effort to cause one to lock the front wheel while suffering 'clutch confusion'. Did the OP by any chance own a Harley...?

ofx210p
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Re: Regen braking on the front brake.

Ok... as an ex-harley owner i am totally lost by your comment leftie... Harley's clutches are on the left like every other motorbike clutch so why would you lock the front wheel ? Admittedly they are cable operated which makes some of them rather hard to pull (depending on yr/model) but i am baffled all the same. Sorry if i am being dumb LOL

LeftieBiker
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Re: Regen braking on the front brake.

I was just talking about pull effort, not location.

ofx210p
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Re: Regen braking on the front brake.

Ahh makes sense. Cheers

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