NIU Review

For members who own little scooters.
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Waldorf
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NIU Review

Post by Waldorf »

The First 100 Miles.

Here is the first update on my NIU electric scooter which I've now owned for 17 days.

I didn't take it out on the first day as I wanted to prepare myself for the new experience, especially things including becoming familiar with the charger and the various operations of the 'ignition' switch.

The key operates the seat-opening mechanism, the steering lock and, of course, the on/off switch.

There is a fairly standard-looking remote which operates the alarm and immobiliser.

I thought I'd write a list of pros and cons but, rather than do that, will describe various features that have become apparent already.

The first couple are specific to the NIU as opposed to a conventional petrol-engined scooter.
I discovered by accident almost straight away that when the brakes are applied, the motor is switched off. This may seem obvious but has a major effect on pulling away from a stand. My house is built on a slope. When I back the Silverwing out of the back yard I naturally end up pointing up the hill; obviously, when free-wheeling, it's easier than trying to pedal up hill.
This is fine since one can hold the scooter on the brakes, open the throttle and release the brakes almost as if one is doing a hill-start in a car.
However, when I followed the same pattern on the NIU and opened the throttle with the brakes on, nothing happened! I opened the throttle more in the hope that I'd move forward. It wasn't until I released the brake that I shot forwards rather suddenly. Fortunately, I was parallel with the kerbs so didn't hit anything.
This feature of the scooter has taken a little while to get used to.
Since the NIU is so light I do back up the hill so don't have to hold it on the brake.

The switch for changing between modes is on the right-hand side of the handle-bars and is operated by the thumb. This means that one doesn't have to let go in order to use the switch. However, it is somewhat easy to roll the throttle back, increasing speed, when reaching for the switch, especially when 'changing down'. This, as riders will know, is not ideal! Practice is making perfect and I think summer gloves will make the action easier.
I'm using the facility almost like a gearbox. The scooter is humping my 18+stone bulk around so slows noticeably going uphill in the 'dynamic' – middle – mode. It isn't proving a problem although I suppose it might be reducing the range a little.
Eco-mode is proving useful for slow-speed manoeuvring, such as when I ride into my yard and get on to my parking place outside church. Today, I went over to the nearest branch of my bank which is 16 minutes/7.2 miles away. I scouted around the back of the shopping-centre to find handy railings to which to lock the scooter and used the Eco-mode for that, too. Eco-mode hauls me around at about 12 mph so gives me time to think.

I am also aware of the 'extras' like dynamic braking; it doesn't feel any different from ordinary engine braking but the comprehensive dash tells me it's doing it.

Slightly odd is the fact that the sound the indicators make is not in time with the indicators themselves. That they make a sound has proved useful, attracting the attention of pedestrians about to cross side-turnings.

The silent running has not proved a problem so far with regard to pedestrians being aware of my approach. The only time I've had to use the horn was this morning to alert a cat sauntering across the road.

I shall be glad when the windscreen arrives; it's cold up here at the moment and although I'm wearing thermals and several layers, my chest gets cold. I suppose it's not surprising as I can whiz along at 45 mph, peaking twice at 47!

I'm getting used to doing all the charging business; it's becoming second nature.

I bought a largish Shad topbox and am glad I went for a big one. I carry an Oxford Boss alarmed padlock and two cables; the NIU is light and would be easy to lift into a van. There's plenty of room as well for my man-bag and waterproofs.
My crash helmet and gloves fit easily in the box when the other stuff's not in there. I haven't yet experimented to see if my jacket will go in as well but I think it might …. just!

The ride is a bit choppy but not jarring; I'm being more careful about avoiding drains and potholes. That's not difficult as the scooter is quite agile and can be flicked about.

Much as I no longer enjoy riding in the dark, I have done so and will continue doing so through the Winter. It is made tolerable by the fact the headlight is very good for a scooter doing a maximum of 45 mph.

I bought an all-enveloping cover from Amazon which allows me to put the charger in the footwell and charge it in the yard overnight. I haven't monitored the charging but it seems to be as suggested by the manufacturers.

So far, so good; no regrets.

I've struggled to write this; it hasn't flowed but I hope it's given an insight into progress made.
Please ask questions if you wish and I'll answer if I can.
Mike
Silverwing 600 - 'The Crowman'
"Ignorant people will always be afraid of what's different and will always mock what they don't understand."
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Re: NIU Review

Post by Red Dog »

It was a good comprehensive review. I enjoyed reading it.

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Waldorf
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Re: NIU Review

Post by Waldorf »

Thank you. :)
Mike
Silverwing 600 - 'The Crowman'
"Ignorant people will always be afraid of what's different and will always mock what they don't understand."
Capitano

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capitano
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Re: NIU Review

Post by capitano »

Brilliant, Mike. You sound like you are using the bike just like NIU intended, and reaping the benefits.

Long may the happy relationship continue.

8-)

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Waldorf
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Re: NIU Review

Post by Waldorf »

Thank you, Ged; it's fun as well as fulfilling the role I wanted it for.

After church on Friday morning I decided to ride along the coast as it is in Seaham and a bit beyond and rode around for the hell of it.
I realised it was just like going for a ride on our bikes when we were children. I had to get home eventually but could have gone on for ages. :)
Mike
Silverwing 600 - 'The Crowman'
"Ignorant people will always be afraid of what's different and will always mock what they don't understand."
Capitano

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Re: NIU Review

Post by Whatsisname »

Sounds like a happy partnership. We could all use a little childhood "playtime" now and again.
I wake up every morning with a smile upon my face,
My natural exuberance spills out all over the place!

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