Should we bail on the new Swytch conversion kit

harrys

Pedelecer
Dec 1, 2016
226
34
71
Chicago, USA
With 5AH, you might get 70-90 minutes of riding at 10-12 mph. For £300 , or $375 USD where I am, that's a good price for a motor/wheel/controller if it's well engineered. Adding a useable, but tiny battery is a bonus. I could tap in a aux battery from my collection and ride for miles.

I'd buy a Swytch like that for that kind of money if I could get it with $50 shipping.
 

afia2k8

Pedelecer
Dec 14, 2021
28
2
This is the info they sent me the AIR (2.6Ah, 15km range, 90Wh) and the MAX (5Ah, 50km range, 180Wh.) Both motor wheels are 250W and 36V. I'm currently recieving terrible customer service and will probably request a refund by the end of the week!
Oh wow that's really low. How did you get the ah info? I tried looking everywhere couldn't find it. Did they tell you what the early bird prices will be tomorrow?
 

matthewslack

Esteemed Pedelecer
Nov 26, 2021
647
377
Looks like there is a solution to the range issue...extra power packs! Who would have thought it?

An absolute bargain at £2000 per kWh for the AIR packs, and a not much more reasonable £1500 / kWh for MAX packs.

Who said Bosch were expensive?
 

afia2k8

Pedelecer
Dec 14, 2021
28
2
Main Website link;

https://launch.swytchbike.com/

Scroll down to 'Learn More' and click on Tech Specs tab and it gives you the battery capacity.

Oh wow okay i can see everything now. Madness. Absolutely not worth it even with the so called 60% off. There's a £50 UK specialist shipping fee as well on top.

Bike:
Air £399 + £50----- (2.6ah 98wh 15km)
Max £499 + £50---- (5ah 180wh 30km)

Folding bike (fork 75 - 80mm)
Air £524 + £50
Max £624 + £50

Est delivery July/August
 

matthewslack

Esteemed Pedelecer
Nov 26, 2021
647
377
Oh wow okay i can see everything now. Madness. Absolutely not worth it even with the so called 60% off. There's a £50 UK specialist shipping fee as well on top.

Bike:
Air £399 + £50----- (2.6ah 98wh 15km)
Max £499 + £50---- (5ah 180wh 30km)

Folding bike (fork 75 - 80mm)
Air £524 + £50
Max £624 + £50

Est delivery July/August
I find Swytch interesting to watch, but as the details come out I am less and less interested in being a customer.

I was attracted by the basic idea of simplicity and lightweight, but now it has apparently turned out to be just a normal set of hub motor system components hidden in a bag hanging off a single big connector with a tiny battery, I've lost any sense of wow I started out with.
 

sjpt

Esteemed Pedelecer
Jun 8, 2018
3,046
2,297
Swytch have lots of technical expertise. It's just that it's in marketing and public awareness, not in ebike hardware.

e.g they knew how to engineer this article ...
 

guerney

Esteemed Pedelecer
Sep 7, 2021
4,060
1,433
Swytch have lots of technical expertise. It's just that it's in marketing and public awareness, not in ebike hardware.

e.g they knew how to engineer this article ...
Around the time the pandemic hit and I was looking at conversion kits, I got very excited when Spencer Kelly of BBC Click announced that the forthcoming programme would include a segment on how to convert your bicycle to electric... but after a long week's wait, it was a SWYTCH kit that he featured - a horrible disappointment, a complete letdown which has forever associated Swytch chemically in my brain to soul crushing hopelessness. I think it's permanent :(
 
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Nealh

Esteemed Pedelecer
Aug 7, 2014
16,932
6,609
59
West Sx RH
Something like the switch is meant to appeal to the masses who have no practical capability when it comes to mechanics, after that they are at the beck and call of the supplier should anything go wrong. We see often dalliances with new tech/toys, soon these fads loose the appeal and with bikes only used when the sun is shining. Often it will be the battery that dies from lack of use.
For most the occasional use of an ebike doesn't warrant owning one as it invariably after the novelty wares off will see as much use as a push bike.
 
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Bonzo Banana

Esteemed Pedelecer
Sep 29, 2019
346
163
I find Swytch interesting to watch, but as the details come out I am less and less interested in being a customer.

I was attracted by the basic idea of simplicity and lightweight, but now it has apparently turned out to be just a normal set of hub motor system components hidden in a bag hanging off a single big connector with a tiny battery, I've lost any sense of wow I started out with.
I'm exactly the same I look at the what the bike industry is offering at mid to high level pricing for spec and find it interesting but would never buy it. There is a lot of high margin products in the bike industry of dubious quality and value that are best ignored. Swytch is poor value compared to other solutions and the new low capacity battery ebike kits will give the batteries a real working out as they will be discharged at extreme current levels repeatedly. Yes they may use high quality cells but even so they are likely to fail early and it could well be a product that barely lasts past its warranty period. Swytch are clearly looking at ways to make a high margin for themselves which they have a perfect right to do and no different from the big brand bikes that come from the same Asian factories as shop brand bikes but cost twice as much. As ever these are products for people with more money than sense in my opinion.

Sometimes the cheap less stylish but crudely over-engineered product is the right product for lifespan and functionality. Proprietary is a word that should strike fear into consumers it means more expensive, less proven in the field and harder and more expensive to keep working once you've bought it.
 

jdunphy

Finding my (electric) wheels
Apr 12, 2022
16
1
Victoria, BC
Interesting where this topic has gone with the gen 3 product line. My wife has the gen 2 product and it would appear that not much has changed other than better damping, more mechanical strain reduction, etc between gen 1 and gen 2. After market products have come forward and are readily available so that one can attach a second battery and locate that battery where it makes sense for ones bike. An example is this little $30 cable.

Ref: https://batterypowersupplied.co.uk/products/dual-battery-balance-circuit?variant=37695448809635

Likewise a community of swytch owners have been sharing their experiences, enhancements, and repairs to various parts that fail from hall sensors to adding new controllers to completely bypassing the swytch intermediate cable harness.

Gen 3 looks like a realization that their market is for people that need a simpler install and that the connection harness was a design flaw they can't overcome with more rubber and conformal coatings. If feels like they are running out the clock on Gen 1 and 2 owners with their warranties as out of stock is the norm for those replacement parts. Support costs must be killing them which is a lengthy proposition with an email per day style of correspondence. I have been watching my wife deal with tech support and they don't appear to read the tickets and offer conflicting advice from previous Sywtch tech support. Whatever the problem, they can not sustain that model it would appear.

By increasing the costs, adding less capability at the lower price point where the product existed they are now competing directly with more capable higher end kits from either their LBS, online stores or the inexpensive e-bike market. For many people, buying a $600-$900 ebike from Costco could be an easier decision than a $500-$900 kit + S/H if they are not tied to an existing bike. Even in Canada, we have seen folding e-bikes in the $400 CAD (igo) and we pay dearly for stuff here. ;-)
 

Hightechpete

Pedelecer
Jan 20, 2018
132
31
70
west Wales
The original question was 'Should we bail on the switch kit', without question YES. It has never worked properly and is downright dangerous, not fit for purpose. Get your money back and buy something like a Yose kit.
 

jdunphy

Finding my (electric) wheels
Apr 12, 2022
16
1
Victoria, BC
Replacement parts arrived today in Victoria, BC Canada May 10. We also had tracking and were notified of the parts leaving the warehouse in contrast to what my wife was told by support. They sent a few extra's too. New PAS, new charger, and new handbar mount. Next up is to give this some testing. Will report back after a few hundred miles in a few weeks if the new handbar mount corrected it.
 

ChrisMeBike

Finding my (electric) wheels
May 23, 2022
7
0
Replacement parts arrived today in Victoria, BC Canada May 10. We also had tracking and were notified of the parts leaving the warehouse in contrast to what my wife was told by support. They sent a few extra's too. New PAS, new charger, and new handbar mount. Next up is to give this some testing. Will report back after a few hundred miles in a few weeks if the new handbar mount corrected it.
Jim, I put a Swytch kit on my mountain bike last September. I bought another kit for my wife end of last year and put it on her bike in March. Her kit is acting up much the way you have experienced with your wife's kit. I'm slowly working my way through the Swytch support test/experiment flow chart with them. BTW, I put my own power pack on her bike and have experienced the same symptoms.

So I'm really curious as it's almost two weeks since you got the replacement parts. Can you report anything yet?

Thanks,
Chris
 

jdunphy

Finding my (electric) wheels
Apr 12, 2022
16
1
Victoria, BC
Chris,

Yes...it definitely feels like they are following a flow chart and the one answer per day email response pace (at least for us in the west coast of Canada) does take a bit of time.

We have not had any further issues and it seems to be working flawlessly. We road tested it over some serious broken roads and bumps without issue. Our goal has been to try and make it fail. Not yet. If you are comfortable, you might pull the battery tray out and verify cables are snug and seated. I used that opportunity to take some pictures and research replacements if that was the direction we were headed. Swytch has a video how to replace a controller which is what I used as guidance for myself. Putting it all back is where that video was helpful as it can be a tight fit.

Our upgrades.

1) I added a 3rd party throttle - as a backup in case it cut off on her while we were waiting for parts. She rarely uses it.
2) I ordered a new 3rd party PAS yesterday (all in one design) that you pull the crank and slip on. If it works, I'll add that to this thread. Nothing wrong with the current PAS but this looks like it could have less maintenance.
3) we will probably come up with a solution for the eco battery range. I am torn between getting an add on cable that works with the current battery + another battery OR replacing her battery pack with higher quality and more energy dense cells. We don't have that need but it is something we will probably explore at some point.

My wife is happy with her kit and hopefully this problem is resolved for us.

Jim
 

ChrisMeBike

Finding my (electric) wheels
May 23, 2022
7
0
Jim,
That's excellent information and thanks for answering. Glad to hear your wife is happy with her kit now too.

If I understand correctly Swytch sent you folks a new power pack replacement connector, plus new handlebar bracket/connector, PAS, and charger. Can you please confirm and if you're using all the new parts on your wife's bike?

I'm wondering if the new handlebar bracket might also be key to your success. I have swapped the power packs between my bike and my wife's bike and I still get see some issue with my own power pack on her bike even though it has been reliable on my own bike. It is not as bad as with her own power pack and handlebar bracket. So if this is all relates only to power pack connections I think the variation in tolerances of both the power pack connector and the handlebar connector/bracket are involved with our issue, though more from the power pack connector.

BTW, I'm keenly interested how your upgrades work out, especially the all-in-one PAS. The Swytch PAS sensor must sense the direction of magnet movement since it knows to ignore reverse spin of the crank. I guess it's a Hall-effect device?

Thanks again,
Chris
 

jdunphy

Finding my (electric) wheels
Apr 12, 2022
16
1
Victoria, BC
We are only using the Handlebar mount (bracket). I felt like our PAS was working and I think they pulled their standard accessory box kit which includes a 2A charger with UK plug (can't use here), a PAS, and the new bracket mount.
 

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ChrisMeBike

Finding my (electric) wheels
May 23, 2022
7
0
It's starting to make sense to me that the handlebar mount/bracket is the only change needed to fix your issue.

Despite all my feedback with experiments trying both power packs and even sending a link to this thread, my customer support advisor (Latisha) has deemed my my situation thusly: It appears Mrs Miller is in need of a new controller. As you are within your 1 year warranty, I will hand you over to our aftercare team who will email you the next steps in due course.

I would be grateful if you can share with me the name of Swytch support/tech representative you or your wife communicated with in case my situation goes off the rails. Perhaps they're punishing me for my vigilance?

Thanks,
Chris
 

jdunphy

Finding my (electric) wheels
Apr 12, 2022
16
1
Victoria, BC
Chris,

It wasn't just one support person according to my wife. Here is who she delt with: Tommy, Michael, Latisha, Kirsty, Graziano, Edwin. My wife was very detailed and specific in her reporting and questioned them many times and they were patient and polite with each response. She felt like they were trying to get to root cause but it took some time because of that checklist and one email per day correspondence rate. Her biggest frustration was they had no idea when it would leave the warehouse given they were out of stock and there would be no tracking. In the end, they provided both and it arrived fairly fast.

Jim
 

ChrisMeBike

Finding my (electric) wheels
May 23, 2022
7
0
Thank you Jim. I'll feel grateful I've only corresponded with two support people this far (Michael and Latisha) and they are polite and helpful.

We're into the riding season here in Vermont and our season isn't all that long. So I feel a desire to expedite the process if possible. You and your wife's experiences mirror our own closely and it seems probable to me we're dealing with the same issue.

The kit on my bike works fine and my wife likes it a lot when her's is working. It's a very good solution for our situation once we get past the issues with my wife's kit.

Once again, please report when you've been able to evaluate the after-market parts.

Thanks,
Chris