Will the Ridekick power trailer help me up steep hills?
The Man vs. Hill video is filmed with a standard Ridekick power trailer on a 10% grade (pretty darn steep!) It really does work that way. This FAQ explains the “tricks” to riding uphill; note in the video that he was climbing at good speed and not lugging at 3 mph.
PEDAL ASSIST – NOT A MOTOR CYCLE
This power trailer is designed to help you pedal, not pedal for you! Enjoy the ride – get your heart rate above what you get while driving.
The smart controller recognizes when the overheating will occur and shuts down to protect the motor and controller.
The overheating condition is when you are powering up a hill at less than 8 mph.
For example, if you have your brakes on, apply full throttle, and don’t move for 30 seconds, the controller will turn itself off for protection. It will display “E8” on the controller readout and you can reset it by turning it off then on again and you are ready to go.
POWER ASSIST RIDING UPHILL
Yes, you can get up that hill. The key is to pedal enough to keep above ~8mph. On gentle hills, you won’t need to assist much at all. On steep climbs, pedal with the power on and notice how much easier it is with the assist. Some hills are just too steep depending on your strength and endurance, so turn around and enjoy the ride downhill.
Take note that hill climbing drains the battery more quickly. Don’t expect full range going up hills.
One happy kicker writes: “I bought it yesterday, and today went to the grocery with it and back up Soledad Mountain carrying 40 lbs of groceries! The little electric motor is very quiet and perfect for the uphill segments… don’t need it on the flat and downhill. So awesome!” –V
When starting on a hill, pedal enough to get up to 8mph within 30 seconds. Or if you are approaching a hill, get your speed up as you enter the climb.
POWER ASSIST RIDING INTO THE WIND
It’s great fun riding into the wind with power assist. The same hill climbing clues apply – pedal along for speeds greater that 8mph, and you are on your way without sweat. Riding into the wind will use more battery power, so when riding with the wind, use less assist to extend your range.
POWER LEVEL SETTING
The latest controller update includes a power setting option. P1 (power level 1) is lower power for higher mileage, and P2 provides high power for faster starts and subsequently lower mileage. Both settings have the same top speed on level terrain.
WHERE DO YOU RIDE?
If you are in San Francisco, pedal along with the assist to get up those hills, and coast downhill. If you are stopped at the base of a steep hill, it will take to effort along with the assist to get up to speed in ½ minute. Be sure to check you brakes before you ride so you have the stopping power for those unexpected downhill events.
In the rolling hills of the Midwest, enjoy the ups and downs as you do on an unassisted bike. With the power assist, you can top that oncoming hill with an easy assist.