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Schaeffler introduces new automatic bicycle gearshift system

Schaeffler is presenting the new automatic bicycle gearshift system FAG-VELOMATIC at EUROBIKE 2014. Whether going uphill, downhill, or on the flat, on a conventional bike, with a derailleur or hub gears, or on an e-bike, the FAG-VELOMATIC calculates the optimum gear and shifting point based on the cadence, force, wheel speed, and gradient. This ensures excellent riding comfort with maximum flexibility. Thanks to open standards, this gearshift system is compatible with every type of bicycle and drive system.

The FAG-VELOMATIC. Click to enlarge.

The FAG VELOMATIC replaces manual shifting. The rider can change independently from “automatic mode” to “manual mode” using an optionally available and easy-to-use electric gearshift module in the form of a hold-to-run switch in order to shift gears manually for a sportier ride.

The communication module connects the FAG VELOMATIC with the electric drive system in an e-bike or the sensor bottom bracket in a conventional bicycle as well as the optionally available electric gearshift module and the rider’s smartphone. The standard wireless sensor networks are ANT+ and BLE, interconnection standards are CAN, CANopen or LIN.

With a narrow, extremely light design (24 x 180 mm, weight approx. 200 g), the gearshift system can be fitted in the down tube or the seat tube and is not visible from the outside. The system is connected to the hub gear or derailleur via a short shifting cable.

The system’s own controller and bluetooth interface offer a large number of possible combinations, for example, with a smartphone, additional sensors, control elements and drives.

Cyclists can use the accompanying VELODAPTIC app to create customized shifting programs. That means everyone always stays in the right gear, without having to shift manually. The app also accompanies cyclists on the road and records the GPS, movement, and performance data.

The app records the following movement data: speed, cadence, force, torque, uphill or downhill gradient, distance, position and a compass function. The cockpit always displays three sets of movement data, which the user can click through. GPS data for location determination and a map function are also available via the app. A statistical evaluation of kilometers traveled, meters climbed, calories burnt, forced used, cadence, torque and average and maximum speed is also possible. These data can be exported to other terminal devices.

Increased efficiency for an increased range. E-bikes require less electrical energy if the electric drive is operated at the optimum operating point. The FAG VELOMATIC comprises an electric linear drive with sensors. It is equipped with its own software and is able to communicate with any e-bike control systems. The optimum gear is selected in coordination with the rider and the electric drive. The e-bike drive therefore operates at the most efficient operating point, requires less energy, and the range of the battery is significantly increased compared with conventional, mechanical gearshift applications.


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