Commuting every day on a EUC
This is a new sort of electric unicycle review. Most reviewers will give you a very general view of the wheels they review. This is not such a review. As well, all of the opinions of this article are the opinions of the author and do not reflect on PEV.NEWS.
I am a EUC commuter. I sold my car and replaced it with the Electric unicycle which I refer to as a wheel. My reviews address the appropriateness of using the wheel for the purpose of commuting. As such we will not address things like off-roading except where they impact commuting.
Today we are going to talk about the kingsong KS-18L and by extension the KS-18XL, which after the upgrade is an 18L with a bigger battery. I have placed over 3000 miles on a KS-18L using it as a commuter vehicle. Here are some of my observations.
I replaced an InMotion V8 (I will review that later) with the KingSong KS-18L. I am a big guy at 6’1” (185 CM), weighing 265 lbs (120 kgs). As soon as I started riding the KS-18L it seemed to me as if I had moved from a sports car to a big Mercedes. The V8 was lighter and more nimble, more acrobatic. But the nimbleness comes with a price for a commuter. That price is paid instability.
While this review is not about specs. the newly refreshed KS-18L comes stocked with a 1036Wh battery and the new quiet, powerful 2200W motor, as well as sporting an 18-inch diameter wheel. This means the KS-18L can achieve speeds in excess of 30 mph (48 kph) and attack hills of up to 35°. More about speed later. The larger wheel makes a big difference when hitting bumps. One might think the larger size of the KS18s makes it less comfortable for the rider. But in my case, this was not so. The larger size fits me better than the V8 did, especially for the foot pedals. This even after I had replaced the V8s pedals with larger pedals. I found it easier to place my feet to start out the ride.
I think it is important here to emphasize to the new rider how important foot placement is. The experienced unicycle rider will be able to shift his foot position even while in motion. The less experienced rider, generally with less than 1000 miles of experience, will not find it so easy. Foot placement is an important element for stability instability is very important to the new rider. Foot placement goes a long way toward eliminating speed wobbles. This means the better foot placement for the KS18L increases its usefulness to the commuter. And while this wheel will exceed 30 mph (48 kph), I find that 10-25mph makes for a very stable ride with available power headroom if the rider would need it. Never ride a PEV at its top speed for long.
One drawback to the KS18L is also one of the nice things about the KS-18L, the Trolley handle. This is a love-hate trolley handle. The handle is wonderful for rolling the wheel around or lifting it. The EUC uses the same KingSong mechanism to detect the wheel’s weight and shut down the auto spin and this is most reliable. However, and this is a big one, the angled aspect of the trolley handle means it is very difficult to lean the powered wheel against something without the wheel rolling away. For the commuter, this is a problem. The biggest drawback of the KS-18L is handling it when you do not want to handle it.
Here is an example, with the V8 the handle is on one side. If the commuter stops in a store to purchase something and is waiting at the cash register to pay, he or she can lean the V8 against the wall of the checkout band, get out money or a phone for payment, pay, and after picking up their products, they simply grab the handle and go. This is impossible with the KS18L as the diagonal handle will mean the orientation of the wheel when leaning makes it accelerate and fall.
There is no suspension on the KS18L so off-road is not the easiest. The KS-18L is stable enough to allow the rider to go off of a sidewalk into the grass to avoid obstacles if there is not a huge transition (>3 in/7.5cm) from pavement to grass. I have used the KS-18L for geocaching so the wheel is capable of off-road even if there are now better wheels for this purpose.
The KS-18L offers Bluetooth connections for, systems monitoring (Speed, battery charge, power usage, etc) firmware updates, and music streaming. It is compatible with the King Song App (IOS and Android), Darknessbot (IOS), or EUC World (Android) It also has a 4 speaker built-in sound system with a 12V amplifier which is of limited use while commuting due to car noise but is very entertaining with EUC World new drive sounds features. Add bright headlight, a rear brake light, sidelights (which are customizable RGB), and Safety Warning System featuring Audible beeps and pedal tilt-back (configurable in most apps) and one can see this is a safe wheel. Its size is 23” H x 19.5” W x 7” and weighs 48lbs/22kgs. The large pedals, covered with grip tape, have a 6.3” ground clearance
The KS-18L is a solid performer as a commuter machine and I put 3000+ miles (4800 km) on the wheel, as a commuter, before moving on to my next wheel. The KS-18L is a wonderful ride, with its pedal design and placement, ergonomic design, and balance algorithms make this an excellent commuting machine for the commuter wanting an inexpensive electric PEV commuting machine!
So back to the V8 while does offer a bit better maneuverability, KS-18L overcomes this with greater overall comfort and stability. This is a really enjoyable ride, truly a gliding experience and this is what is the most important. This is
RIDING THE LIGHTING