Tips for riding emtb efficiently

Mar 9, 2016
833
402
Since mtb Invariably run lower tyre pressures than other cyclists think its perhaps more important we look at other places when we try and eek out that extra few miles on trails.
First tip I,ll start of with ....
Keep braking to a minimum and when it is done do it gently and progressively.. ie) don't fly up to stiles, skid to halt in last 10 feet..look ahead and slow down well before...
Any others..
 
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EddiePJ

Esteemed Pedelecer
Jul 7, 2013
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Crowborough, East Sussex
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I guess that for my riding, I try to use as lower power setting as I can comfortably get away with, and when out with pedal only riders, never really ever get out of eco. This has been proven to really extend the range of the bike. All of that tends to go out the window when I am on my own though, as the climbing rate etc increases in speed, and I switch to tour. Unless my knee is playing up, I tend not to bother with the higher power settings.

Staying out of mud is also a good way of increasing efficiency. Not usually an option for me. ;)

Choosing tyre pressures to suit terrain also helps. Like you I run very low tyre pressures when riding locally, but raise them for trips to the South Downs.

Changing tyres to suit terrain would also be a very big saving. Taking my Macina Lycan as an example, I run Hutchinson DZO tyres, and I can hardly pedal the thing above the legal cut off point, there is just so much drag from them. Switching to say the OE Rocket Rons, transforms the bike into a comfortable and easy (ish) bike to pedal above the cut off point. Actually tyre choice has to be my biggest efficiency drop.

Locking suspension on climbs I guess also helps, but I've never yet done that.

Ensuring that you are in the correct gear before starting a climb. The same when coming to a stop, and then pulling away again.

Keeping a bike well maintained must help considerably as well. That includes not leaving caked on mud on the bike, ride after ride, and maintaining a close check on the final drive chain.

I think that things such as the braking and skidding that you mention, are as much to do with good riding practice than anything else. Smooth riding in any discipline is going to make for a more efficient time. :)
 
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Deleted member 4366

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Since mtb Invariably run lower tyre pressures than other cyclists think its perhaps more important we look at other places when we try and eek out that extra few miles on trails.
First tip I,ll start of with ....
Keep braking to a minimum and when it is done do it gently and progressively.. ie) don't fly up to stiles, skid to halt in last 10 feet..look ahead and slow down well before...
Any others..
Pedal harder is the obvious one!
Select a lower assist level.
Go on a diet.
Wear Lycra.
Don't ride until it's been dry for a few days.
 
Mar 9, 2016
833
402
Not sure on pedal harder ?? Just gets you there quicker ?? If you were eco plus would work.
Argument for pedal gentler in standard ???

I,ve experimented a bit in big climb from Lady Bower upto Lockerbrook farm..If I go as fast as I can in high mode use same as going slower in standard...

Anyway another tip...
Keep at or below 12mph on flat...
Don't rest and restart on uphills...do that on down hills. Use hill to build momentum not battery..
 

Emo Rider

Esteemed Pedelecer
Jan 10, 2014
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413
Keeping your pedaling cadence speed at between 80 to 90 rpm works for me. Since I started riding my Haibike I have made good use of the pedal rpm sensor display. I now ride in lower gears instead of power pedaling in higher gears. This really helps when you hit the cutoff at 15.5mph.

It certainly is not as noticable at high pedal rpm as it was when pedaling harder. I would alway loose speed by downshifting to stay at speeds above the cutoff. Sometimes the transition is hardly noticable and I have been extending my range.
 
Mar 9, 2016
833
402
I,d second that emo...the higher cadence keeps your rate up,the force on pedals down and hence only small current on display..
I have notices as well ( might be psychological) in lower gears bike seems to offer more help when needed..?? You can feel more help going for it between 70 and 80 rpm than say 50 to 60 ???

Another tip
Look for smooth sections of track..

As an asdide...rode my normal route today..but in reverse.( not going backwards) Must be same height gain etc...used 10% less battery..???
 

georgehenry

Esteemed Pedelecer
Nov 7, 2015
864
824
Surrey
When my top gear (11 tooth with 38 tooth chainring) played up on my 10 mile road commute and I had to use the next gear down 12 tooth ring I obviously started going a little bit slower but had considerably more battery left when I reached home. Usually I would have 52% ish remaining and I had 62%. I have since changed the chainring to 40 tooth and put a wide spaced 12 – 36 cassette on the back.

Like others have said to use less battery you need to use a lower power setting where ever you can. However if you do this you can considerably save your battery. Where ever the gradient is level or very slightly downhill I now use eco, pedal harder and keep an eye on my speed. On the road where it is level ish I try to maintain 20mph plus if I can. When my speed drops below 20 I pop it into next power level up, but back into eco as soon as I can. I travel on the same roads home and know the gradients. I used to leave it in the second power level all the way home apart from downhills where I turn assist off. Getting into eco more means I use 10% less battery and am still travelling around 20mph.

This made me think that a great additional feature for a ebike would be a sort of cruise control, ie you enter the speed you would like to average/maintain, pedal as hard as you can and the motor only adds the amount of power needed to maintain the speed you have chosen. The harder you pedal the less the motor adds saving your battery and increasing your range. Obviously cutting out like normal when you stop pedalling. This would suit me on my 10 mile quiet ish B road.

My journey to work is mostly off road. I have made the same battery saving by using eco all the way (11/13 miles), and actually turning it completely off for some sections where it is level or very slightly downhill. Once you get an ebike rolling the momentum of that extra weight will keep it rolling until an uphill bit. One day I used 25% battery on my 13mile off road route.(My record so far). I am not averse to exercise and notice that I have worked harder physically when I get to work/home.
 
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Deleted member 4366

Guest
Anyway another tip...
Keep at or below 12mph on flat...
No. Keep the speed above 25km/h (assuming you haven't fitted a dongle yet) on the flat and your battery will take you much further - or is the other way round: You'll be taking the battery a lot further?
 
Mar 9, 2016
833
402
No. Keep the speed above 25km/h (assuming you haven't fitted a dongle yet) on the flat and your battery will take you much further - or is the other way round: You'll be taking the battery a lot further?
Fair point D8, I was more spefically speaking for tracks and using help.
Maintaing 12mph as opposed to 16 ( no dongle but most bikes I,ve tried give help at 16) will have half air drag..
There are few tracks I use where its possible to maintain over 15.5 mph. On such just slow down a bit to 12 ish.. Yes on road keep above 15.5 but you aren't on an electric bike then,...
 

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