So it’s been a little over a week getting used to the TSDZ2, and already there is a new beta version of the open source firmware to play with.
Having read through the new documentation there are two new features that stand out .Walk assist and Cruise control.
So let’s have a look at both of these features and why I think they are potentially so useful to all types of riders.
This is by no means a new feature, and is quite common to see on alot of ebike control systems. Usually this feature works by simply pressing and holding the down button which applys a small amount of power to the motor.
The goal of Walk assist is as the name suggests is to gently power the heavy E-bike along when the rider is walking beside it. Especially useful up slopes but also sandy or very slippery terrain.
What the open source firmware brings new to the table are multiple levels of assist , I haven’t seen this on any off the shelves ebike control.
The goal is to help you pick the perfect walk assist level to match your walking speed.
For me this actually has additional use for our empowered riders. I’m thinking more so for riders on various types of e-trikes and specifically when trying to navigate gates and tight spaces. It can be difficult to quickly get into low gears in order to slowly work your way around obsticals, often require other support riders assistance. Being able to add a little power as these very low speeds can really help.
Second to that I can see that being able to simply press a button to add power from a standstill almost like a gental launch control.
This would benefit many disabled riders who find it difficult to get the crank position correct from the off, and need a few rotations before they can apply power
(for example stating with hand cranks on a slight hill!)
Or needing just a little push if you stall on the hill..
Now I have to admit the first time I read that this was being added I was a little skeptical, I guess that was mainly due to how I thought the feature would work comparing it to how it works in my car. However in the default mode it’s not the same it’s actually more similar to Walk Assist.
To ctivate cruise control you have to press and hold the down button to apply power. But unlike the WalkAssist that only works between a standstill and 4.5mph, cruise only works above 4.5mph.
So once moving along if you press and hold down. The motor aims to keep he current speed but no more.
In operation this is very useful when trying to navigate tricky sections where you naturaly want to keep both pedals high and level. But still need to maintain a steady pace.
Personally I do this allot on my daily commute on a canal path, there are multiple water run off sections over cobbles that can be quite bumpy and slippy. I would not usually pedal through them however at slower speeds they quickly bring you to a stop especially at lower speeds when towing!
So having the ability to maintain a steady speed but still have a good posture to balance is really useful indeed.
I can also imagine it being useful to give riders a welcome short brake from pedaling , in the same way a throttle does but without the need for a separate control. Something along of our riders prefer and miss on most modern ebike systems!
Again I really must congratulate the developers and community who are working on this firmware. I have been very impressed with not only the options available but the sheer speed of development, and progress is fantastic!
Keep it up guys awesome work!