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Bad experience with Max Mobility Smart Drive

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    #16
    I finally wound up with a (MX1+) that works as it is supposed to after many back and forths with the factory. Another I've hard wired, and a third I am debating what to do with. Hard wiring has an issue of it's own as the only decent throttle I know of are bicycle throttles, but they ramp up to wide open too fast, so flipping is a concern. Currently I use an I-Glide, but like the MX1 it too requires pushing for bursts of power.
    I have had periodic paralysis all my life. I lost my ability to walk in 2011 beginning with a spinal block, which was used for a hip fracture caused by periodic paralysis.

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      #17
      Originally posted by nonoise View Post
      Couple comments, I did not say they have a great product, I said they are or were a great company with excellent service. I have a three mx1's no mx2's, but I suspect there is much in common such as the Mosfets on the circuit board. They are tiny and very will could heat up like you indicate. I had trouble finding them at first expecting something much larger.
      My mx1 experience is like your mx2, I could start, stop, but often it would stop on it's own or in a few very unfortunate instances it turned on when I was not expecting it. I since abandoned the printed circuit board in one of the units and hard wired it to a hand throttle near the brake on my wheelchair frame. The reason for this is that the accelerometer in the smartdrive is just to finicky so I got rid of it in favor of a hand control. And now you say the mx2 acts up too. It sounds like they are using the same accelerometers as before.
      As for your battery charging up too fast, that is likely an indication of it failing and needing replaced, sorry.
      Very interesting. You basically have the Spinergy version of the SmartDrive but just a lot smaller. Do you take it off or just leave it on all the time?

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        #18
        Originally posted by nonoise View Post
        I finally wound up with a (MX1+) that works as it is supposed to after many back and forths with the factory. Another I've hard wired, and a third I am debating what to do with. Hard wiring has an issue of it's own as the only decent throttle I know of are bicycle throttles, but they ramp up to wide open too fast, so flipping is a concern. Currently I use an I-Glide, but like the MX1 it too requires pushing for bursts of power.
        Aha! In that case I guess it’s a quality issue rather than design. Perhaps worth pushing back then. That also explains why some people unreservedly recommend the unit, although it also sounds like getting a good one is the exception rather than the norm.
        T2 complete since late 2016. Apparently I wasn?t as good at mountain biking as I thought

        I apologise that when I type an apostrophe it appears as a question mark. I post using an iPad and this is the only forum it happens on. I will fix it if I figure out how.

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          #19
          Originally posted by August West View Post
          Very interesting. You basically have the Spinergy version of the SmartDrive but just a lot smaller. Do you take it off or just leave it on all the time?
          I think the two are different players.
          I remove the power unit when done. but the battery, controller, switch and throttle stay on the chair. I've switched out the battery to a much lighter NCM one, charge lasts forever with these hub motors.
          I have had periodic paralysis all my life. I lost my ability to walk in 2011 beginning with a spinal block, which was used for a hip fracture caused by periodic paralysis.

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            #20
            I wish there was an electronics person on here that had one who understood these things. I think I know what is going on, but I got an upstairs issue lol. I wanted to adjust the accelerometer, but couldn't find it, so the next idea was to float the PC board better than they did, but that is as far as I got.
            I have had periodic paralysis all my life. I lost my ability to walk in 2011 beginning with a spinal block, which was used for a hip fracture caused by periodic paralysis.

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              #21
              So, nonoise, I'm on the fence about these. Disregarding the control issues, I find it hard to believe that this little thing will handle hills or even slightly rough terrain gravel rods, etc.

              I'm afraid I'll find that it's real environment is flat carpet! What do you think-you seem pretty experience with electrical propulsion.
              69yo male T12 complete since 1995
              NW NJ

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                #22
                Originally posted by pfcs49 View Post
                So, nonoise, I'm on the fence about these. Disregarding the control issues, I find it hard to believe that this little thing will handle hills or even slightly rough terrain gravel rods, etc.

                I'm afraid I'll find that it's real environment is flat carpet! What do you think-you seem pretty experience with electrical propulsion.

                I realise you asked nonoise, so forgive me for responding, but you?re right; they are utterly hopeless on loose surfaces. Short, dry grass is OK so long as it's flat. Carpet and sealed surfaces like concrete or tar seal are fine also. Gravel? Forget it. Not only do the loose chipping give the SmartDrive wheel something to spin on, but of course they also chock the wheelchair castors making it harder to push at the worst possible time.
                T2 complete since late 2016. Apparently I wasn?t as good at mountain biking as I thought

                I apologise that when I type an apostrophe it appears as a question mark. I post using an iPad and this is the only forum it happens on. I will fix it if I figure out how.

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                  #23
                  Originally posted by Fen View Post
                  I realise you asked nonoise, so forgive me for responding, but you?re right; they are utterly hopeless on loose surfaces. Short, dry grass is OK so long as it's flat. Carpet and sealed surfaces like concrete or tar seal are fine also. Gravel? Forget it. Not only do the loose chipping give the SmartDrive wheel something to spin on, but of course they also chock the wheelchair castors making it harder to push at the worst possible time.
                  Works well in casinos, steep uphill is good too until you hit a bump that turns it off. Then restarting can be a real issue if the hill is too steep to attain ignition. Constant on overcomes that. Seriously I use the I-glide because it has better traction, two wheel drive with my weight on them. But like the SD I have to push, so the hand throttle option of the hacked SD is great for longer distances.
                  Incidentally, I use 8" casters outside, so no problems there for me.
                  I have had periodic paralysis all my life. I lost my ability to walk in 2011 beginning with a spinal block, which was used for a hip fracture caused by periodic paralysis.

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                    #24
                    these are many reasons i switched to the zx1, none of these problems.
                    Bike-on.com rep
                    John@bike-on.com
                    c4/5 inc funtioning c6. 28 yrs post.
                    sponsored handcycle racer

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                      #25
                      Originally posted by fuentejps View Post
                      these are many reasons i switched to the zx1, none of these problems.
                      I have a zx1 and tried SD that my husband purchased for his chair. I couldn't stop it and smacked into the side of our house, with the drive wheel flipping sideways. Had to transfer to a chair while hubby detached it from my chair.
                      Once when he was using it it took off down a driveway while he was wheeling out of a parking lot, smacked a bench and he had to get someone to turn it off.
                      I think the SD is great if directions are followed carefully. Hubby turned in his unit for a newer one and has been happy with it; I'm always concerned when he's using it.
                      I'm hopeful for more products for scooting a wheelchair along. I love my zx1 and could not function outdoors without it. However, those driving a car independently cannot load it, thus the SD is useful and can be loaded fairly easily.
                      I keep wondering if the SD could be set up with a detachable joy stick to run it. Seems it would be safer than relying on tapping a wrist band.
                      In short, I would love to live long enough to see many more devices!

                      Comment


                        #26
                        Originally posted by triumph View Post
                        I have a zx1 and tried SD that my husband purchased for his chair. I couldn't stop it and smacked into the side of our house, with the drive wheel flipping sideways. Had to transfer to a chair while hubby detached it from my chair.
                        Once when he was using it it took off down a driveway while he was wheeling out of a parking lot, smacked a bench and he had to get someone to turn it off.
                        I think the SD is great if directions are followed carefully. Hubby turned in his unit for a newer one and has been happy with it; I'm always concerned when he's using it.
                        I'm hopeful for more products for scooting a wheelchair along. I love my zx1 and could not function outdoors without it. However, those driving a car independently cannot load it, thus the SD is useful and can be loaded fairly easily.
                        I keep wondering if the SD could be set up with a detachable joy stick to run it. Seems it would be safer than relying on tapping a wrist band.
                        In short, I would love to live long enough to see many more devices!
                        I have a ZX1 I picked up used. I haven't really used it yet because we had to have a 4" berm put across our driveway to prevent flooding. Until we re-pave, it's almost impossible to cross even without the ZX1.
                        It's clear to me the ZX1 will only work from home-no sensible way to load it into our vehicles, so I'm quite interested in the SD but am afraid it's mickey-mouse for real propulsion AND has pre-existing problems of control and management?
                        69yo male T12 complete since 1995
                        NW NJ

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                          #27
                          Appreciate everyone's input! NoNoise, I envy your electronic ability. A wired drive would remove half the issues on this thing - I don't know why it's not a factory option. We got the one they make, but as mentioned above it's not really designed to be very functional (we gave ours to a very appreciative quad (but I felt a bit bad about it)). Thanks to whomever suggested I send it in again - with nothing to loose but $100 in shipping. They've had it a week now. No word back

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                            #28
                            Originally posted by nonoise View Post
                            I wish there was an electronics person on here that had one who understood these things. I think I know what is going on, but I got an upstairs issue lol. I wanted to adjust the accelerometer, but couldn't find it, so the next idea was to float the PC board better than they did, but that is as far as I got.
                            When you rewire the control circuitry and specify MOSFETs (vs just referring to them as transistors), that tells me that you have a pretty good understanding of electronics. A schematic would be necessary to take it to the next level of troubleshooting. However, if it is a component/quality issue rather than a design issue, then a schematic may not get us anywhere.

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                              #29
                              Originally posted by nonoise View Post
                              I finally wound up with a (MX1+) that works as it is supposed to after many back and forths with the factory. Another I've hard wired, and a third I am debating what to do with. Hard wiring has an issue of it's own as the only decent throttle I know of are bicycle throttles, but they ramp up to wide open too fast, so flipping is a concern. Currently I use an I-Glide, but like the MX1 it too requires pushing for bursts of power.
                              If your concern is the acceleration profile being too steep but you like the throttle otherwise, then you can increase the response time by adding a resistor and capacitor (RC time constant) between the throttle and the drive circuit.

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                                #30
                                Originally posted by August West View Post
                                If your concern is the acceleration profile being too steep but you like the throttle otherwise, then you can increase the response time by adding a resistor and capacitor (RC time constant) between the throttle and the drive circuit.
                                I think it is a lot more complicated than that since the voltage varies from 0 to 5 v. Look at this youtube, fast forward to 14:50 for explanation of the four pots. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uLEyISYfyZw
                                I have had periodic paralysis all my life. I lost my ability to walk in 2011 beginning with a spinal block, which was used for a hip fracture caused by periodic paralysis.

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