Coming Attractions…

updated: January 17, 2021

Microshift Advent: Budget 1x Ebike Drivetrain

With the Mongoose Envoy’s recent move to the Monterey Bay Area from its former home in Fresno California, I have found myself using every cog of the 11-32T Shimano HG400-9 cluster that I have installed. Running on the inner cogs like that means bad chain alignment. I need to be running further outboard and that means I need a different, much wider cluster.

But that 1-piece steel, pinned Shimano cluster is pretty much indestructible when paired with a powerful BBSHD mid drive. I’ll be losing that indestructability. Or will I?

Left to right: 11-46T cluster, Pro shifters and long cage, clutched derailleur

Microshift provides a potential solution. They are selling their 9s Advent component group to singletrack riders on a budget – All three pieces ran me around $125 total.

The Advent group was introduced in 2019, but very recently got an evolutionary upgrade.

Can these parts also fit a street-driven, electrified cargo bike use case? Can they take the kind of pounding a 30a BBSHD mounted to a cargo bike that could be pushing 450 pounds or more total system weight? From where I am sitting, the Advent group borders on being revolutionary to DIY ebikers. We’ll look at them in detail, pre-, during and post-install.

STATUS: argh! Broken spoke on rear wheel has slowed this down a bit. I’ve got everything I need to build this out, but I need to finish up (as in: redo and fix) my disabled 2Fat bike first: 2Fat’s upgrade ran face first into a problem with its new fork (followed by its front motor), and I can’t take both of my utility bikes apart at the same time. Expect the Envoy/Advent review to be published in February/March 2022

Using a Backpack Ebike Battery. Are You Insane?!?

I can’t believe it has taken me this long to realize I need to write this up. I figured it out today while writing one of what must be up to a few dozen explanations by now on why this is nowhere near as bad of an idea as some people – people who have never actually done it – make out.

Since one of the main purposes of this blog is to write stuff up once so I don’t wear out my fingers, this is a prime candidate.

STATUS: I need to do some photo work this weekend to display how I am using this backpack in 2022 vs. 2020 when I took the above photos. Then I can get started on what I expect to be a quick writeup.

Tool Kit: The 2022 Edition

I’ve made some changes to my tool kits since I originally wrote up my full kit and basic kit in late 2020 and early 2021. The differences are worth mentioning.

STATUS: If Amazon would just deliver the last tool I need to write up this article, I could get started. Should happen any day now. This will be a quickee coming out in January 2022.

2Fat Gets A Major Facelift

The point of this exercise is so 2Fat can better handle long runs on deserted stretches of super deep, dry and coarse beach sand. This is the first alteration since the bike rolled off the laboratory table in 2017.

  • Surly Moonlander front fork (installed but bad… needs a do-over)
  • New (re-used from parts pile :D) front rack to take advantage of the Moonlander’s barnacles (installed)
  • Box Components Prime 9 Drivetrain (installed)
    • Box 2 Extra Wide 50T-capable derailleur
    • Box 2 single-per-throw E-shifter
    • Box 2 144 link chain
    • Box 3 11-46T all-steel cluster
  • Just-in-case Sunrace CS-M983 11-46T steel cluster (in hand… Spoiler Alert: its identical to the Box 3 cluster)
  • Battery capacity increase from 25ah to 32ah (same size and weight) – (installed)
  • Kinekt suspension stem with dampener enhancement kit (installed)
  • Replace worn 26×4.80″ Snowshoe XL tires with 26×4.80″ Snow Avalanche’s (Rear installed; front needs a Plan B)
  • Handlebar extensions using a similar method to what I did with the Surly Big Fat Dummy’s bars. (installed)
  • handlebar extension inserts for XXXXL grips (installed)
There’s something funny-looking about those Jones handlebars…

STATUS: Article in planning stages. I’ve been riding it with the upgrades and unfortunately ran into a problem with the forks. I’m waiting on parts. Prior to that, after some serious remote excursions, everything seemed to be working well. Publication could happen late January 2022.

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