Focus Parlane2 anyone?

Electrically assisted bikes, trikes, etc.
Oldjohnw
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Re: Focus Parlane2 anyone?

Postby Oldjohnw » 8 Dec 2018, 4:29pm

I can get 43mph on my leccy bike. Just the motor cuts out. When it's downhill the motor is irrelevant anyway. Gravity.
John

Cycling and recycling

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Cugel
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Re: Focus Parlane2 anyone?

Postby Cugel » 8 Dec 2018, 7:55pm

Oldjohnw wrote:I can get 43mph on my leccy bike. Just the motor cuts out. When it's downhill the motor is irrelevant anyway. Gravity.


Ha ha - I can get 170mph on any bike. I just need to be brave enough to ride it over the cliff so that terminal velocity is achieved.

Braking can be a problem, though. :-)

Cugel

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Cugel
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Re: Focus Parlane2 anyone?

Postby Cugel » 9 Dec 2018, 5:01pm

Today the ladywife et moi did the Jubilee Tower ride, which is about 20 miles and 500M of climbing. The little rascal, as I anticipated, disappeared up the big bit (230M in one ascent) leaving me to grovel up it, as her tail light gradually became just a far distant flicker on the horizon. She did this at power level 2 of 3 (about 160 watts added to her own efforts) with a minute or two at level 3 of 3 (250 added watts) on the very steepest stretches.

This and a number of other steep but shorter bonks painted a very large smile upon that lady's chops, especially when she viewed my sweaty-panty (not those sort of sweaty panty) condition in her mirror. She's hooked. I can expect many more such joyous miles.

The elecrik motor does even-out our respective power outputs, making it easier to ride together at a pace that would otherwise be for me something of a crawl. She could easily leave me for dead should she use the power with a more profligate push of the wee button. But she consciously kept the added power to just enough so we could ride comfortably together - apart from up that geet big hill, which she went up reet quick just to annoy me, or so I suspect. Ha!

One syndrome, though, is that on the easier bits and descents, she is still significantly slower than me. This isn't so much die to power differences as experience differences. I can plunge down descents where she will brake a lot. I can ride down Mirk Lane as though it were smooth tarmac whilst she is hesitant in the face of mudslides, gravel heaps and the monsters that live at the road edge waiting to grab your wheel. I expect her confidence and speed in such circumstances will grow with more riding ... but it illustrates that an electrik bike can only level certain aspects of two cyclist's cycling abilities.

Cugel

stodd
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Re: Focus Parlane2 anyone?

Postby stodd » 10 Dec 2018, 9:37am

Weight can also make a big difference on downhill speeds; smaller people's air resistance does not reduce as much as their weight does.

If you get a tandem you will find that you both keep very much the same speed all the time, and faster than either bike alone downhill (especially if you don't have a stoker brake).

brynpoeth
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Re: Focus Parlane2 anyone?

Postby brynpoeth » 10 Dec 2018, 9:52am

Cugel: have you got a tandem or do you plan to get one?
If not why not?
Cycling-of course, but it is far better on a Gillott
We love safety cameras & STOP signs

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Cugel
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Re: Focus Parlane2 anyone?

Postby Cugel » 10 Dec 2018, 11:15am

stodd wrote:Weight can also make a big difference on downhill speeds; smaller people's air resistance does not reduce as much as their weight does.

If you get a tandem you will find that you both keep very much the same speed all the time, and faster than either bike alone downhill (especially if you don't have a stoker brake).


True - but the ladywife goes slower down the hills for other reasons too, all characterised by the notion "caution".

She has much roadcraft as she has driven large army vehicles in the TA and was once a motorcycle instructor in a police scheme of long ago to encourage young motorcycling miscreants to avoid the early deaths (theirs and others). However, she has less cycling experience, especially of the "push the envelope" kind that one learns when racing or club riding.

But the e-bike is her passport through the gate of "can't keep up with you" into the land of "dropping you on the hills now". Such an encouraging trip is the catalyst that has revived her enthusiasm for cycling, so she will soon be skilled at the cycling-specifics, including faster down-hilling and riding in the muck.

She used to fell run but recently gave it up in response to the beginnings of knee-twinge and other strains that tend to come with age. These prompts were amplified by her observance of many friends who failed to give up the fell running and now have artificial knees, hips and various other skeletal glitches that rather spoil their general mobility.

Cycling, though, is kind - unless you fall off when screaming down a steep hill, that is.

Cugel

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Cugel
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Re: Focus Parlane2 anyone?

Postby Cugel » 10 Dec 2018, 11:17am

brynpoeth wrote:Cugel: have you got a tandem or do you plan to get one?
If not why not?

Many times have I suggested the scheme. "Just fink, darlink - we could go everywhere together".

However, she has observed my down-hilling and other ex-racing habits so would never allow me to be pilot. I, on the other hand, would be the world's worst back-seat pedaller.

Cugel

brynpoeth
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Re: Focus Parlane2 anyone?

Postby brynpoeth » 10 Dec 2018, 11:22am

Cugel wrote:
brynpoeth wrote:Cugel: have you got a tandem or do you plan to get one?
If not why not?

Many times have I suggested the scheme. "Just fink, darlink - we could go everywhere together".

However, she has observed my down-hilling and other ex-racing habits so would never allow me to be pilot. I, on the other hand, would be the world's worst back-seat pedaller.

Cugel

Your right to speed is your power to stop - sugnalpersons motto

Just give her the brakes, or get a side-by-side tandem :wink:
Cycling-of course, but it is far better on a Gillott
We love safety cameras & STOP signs

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Cugel
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Re: Focus Parlane2 anyone?

Postby Cugel » 16 Dec 2018, 6:29pm

Today I did 47 miles with the club on the ladywife's new electrick Focus Paralane2 beast. It'll be my first and last significant ride on an electric bike as any more and I'll be seduced forever away from the proper unassisted bicycles.

The objective was mostly to discover the characteristics of the electric thing but also the best modes for riding with others - observations for the ladywife, see? Also, some of the club were fascinated by the design and wanted a look - a proper bike with a motor in it!

A few surprises: to get the most motor power one has to exert the most pedal power. There are two strain gauges in the bottom bracket that, along with the rear wheel speed sensor, compute the amount of power (for each of the three possible levels of assistance) that's appropriate. The harder you try, the more the motor increases it's power. If you back off your efforts (whilst still pedaling), the motor does too. No pedaling, no power at all.

This makes it easy to merely keep pace with others rather than surging ahead all the time. It's just like being a fast lad out with the old pharts. Usually I'm an old phart but today I could be a fast lad - up the hills at least. I was careful never to first up though. :-)

In the 47 miles of mostly undulating terrain with a half dozen more significant rises, I used only 10% of the battery. It was easy to keep pace on the undulations unassisted, despite the extra 4 kg over the usual winter bike. It was 16 miles before I employed the motor (at level 1) going up the drag over Arnside Knott from Silverdale to Arnside. This was more of an experiment than a necessity but it allowed me to keep up with the fast lads whilst the lesser mortals (amongst whom I am usually numbered) were dropped by a couple of hundred yards.

On the return journey home there's a long drag up which the fitter club members can usually do 14-16mph. It's a significant rise but one that can be powered up. Again, I could stick with those fast lads at motor level 1 - until the speed reached 15.5mph when the motor ceases to assist. Despite having to then drop back, I feel this is exactly how such a bike in such a circumstance should behave. One does not want to be a bionic cyclist!

Overall, the bike feels exactly like any other good quality road bike. It makes no loud motor noises. The power, when used, isn't obvious except that it seems easier to go a bit faster - as though your legs just got a bit stronger, along with your heart & lungs. The bike tracks, corners and otherwise behaves just like a non-powered bike, although the lower center of gravity seems to add a bit of cornering stability and associated confidence.

I'll miss it. But it is seductive and I don't want to become a lazy fellow or a pretend fast lad. The lovely thing is now back in the firm grasp of the ladywife, who has placed a "Keep Off" notice on the handlebars.

Cugel