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Frequently Asked Questions

  • How does it work?

  • How does it work?

    PedalCell consists of two pieces. The Generator attaches to the fork of your current bike and touches the rim. When your wheel spins, the side of the rim spins the Generator to create electricity. This electricity is sent up a cable to the second part of the device: the Smart Power Hub with two USB-C charging ports. The Smart Power Hub also uses our patented CadenceX technology to stabilize and temporarily store the power coming from the Generator. If you speed up, slow down, or even stop for as long as 30 seconds the power hub will use its smart energy cache to provide power to your devices.

    TLDR: Unlimited Power!

  • Can PedalCell work on anything besides bicycles?

    PedalCell's electronics and generator can be used on any rotating surface with proper mounting and alignment. PedalCell's warranty only applies to bicycle mounting. Our support team is equipped to only help with bicycle-related questions.

  • Installation

    Questions relating to the Installation of CadenceX

  • How long will the O-Ring last?

    PedalCell's O-ring is custom-specced to balance performance with long-term durability. It is recommended to swap every ~2,000 miles. Additional O-Rings can be bought separately or included in the Ultimate Bundle on the PedalCell store.

  • Can PedalCell mount in the rear?

    PedalCell supports mounting on the rear rim via the chainstays of some Tadpole Trikes and bicycles. Those directions can be seen here.

  • How does it work?

    PedalCell consists of two pieces. The Generator attaches to the fork of your current bike and touches the rim. When your wheel spins, the side of the rim spins the Generator to create electricity. This electricity is sent up a cable to the second part of the device: the Smart Power Hub with two USB-C charging ports. The Smart Power Hub also uses our patented CadenceX technology to stabilize and temporarily store the power coming from the Generator. If you speed up, slow down, or even stop for as long as 30 seconds the power hub will use its smart energy cache to provide power to your devices.

    TLDR: Unlimited Power!

  • Is my bicycle (or trike) compatible with PedalCell?

    PedalCell is compatible with the majority of bicycles and delta trikes with front forks equal to or smaller than a 1″ X 2″ oval.As a rule of thumb, we do not recommend PedalCell be mounted on extreme road/aero/competition bikes or heavy suspension mountain bikes due to their unusual/large fork geometries. In addition, we do not recommend mounting with carbon rims due to their limited heat dissipation and willingness to handle force on the rim face.

    PedalCell also supports mounting on the chainstays of some Tadpole Trikes and bicycles. Those directions can be seen here.

  • How much space does my rim need?

    PedalCell can work on most non-carbon rims, including those that do not have braking surfaces. The O-Ring needs approximately 4.7mm of contact area on a rim. This is about <1/2 the surface area needed by most rim brake pads.

  • I know you said that you don't support carbon rim, heavy suspension etc. mounting on my bike but it looks like PedalCell can fit. Can I still try to mount PedalCell there?

    We designed PedalCell to work reliably in its original mounting location on the front fork of most bike designs and select the rear chainstays. Mounting on any non-supported locations/bikes/trikes can cause unintended performance, durability, and other issues with your product (and will void your warranty). We can’t stop you from using PedalCell how you see fit, but understand that we only officially support PedalCell's intended mounting locations!

  • Why is PedalCell mounted on the rim instead of the hub?

    We chose the rim for three primary reasons over a bicycle hub:

    • Power Output: The outside of a bicycle rim spins monumentally faster than the inside hub. Thus, our generator spins at higher RPMs, making it more efficient and creating more power in a compact package. While some dynamos have attempted to generate more power on the hub, the trade-offs in complexity, cost, and weight are extremely high. Thus, we chose the rim as the least path of resistance (no pun intended )
    • Installation: PedalCell can be installed or uninstalled in minutes on most bicycle designs. Dynamo hubs, on the other hand, require time-intensive wheel builds that are difficult to construct. Moreover, hubs are only compatible with certain wheel setups, making their cross-compatibility limited if you decide to switch between bicycles or rim types.
    • Decoupling: We believe that you should have the option to completely deactivite our product if you prefer. Mounting on the rim allows users to mechanically decouple our generator from the rim, thus eliminating all drag. Hub-mounted dynamos require intensive disassemly procedures to remove, making their mechanical drag a permanement burden for most riders.

  • Does my wheel need to spin exactly true?

    No, PedalCell's torsion spring adjusts the generator’s position to maintain optimal contact on rims that do not spin exactly true.

  • Why is there a 40 MPH limit?

    The 40mph limit is for O-ring longevity. At higher speeds, O-Ring stretching can occur which reduces its operating life. Riders will be able to clearly see when this occurs. We recommend that riders decouple from the rim if high speeds are expected for continuous periods. We're considering releasing an o-ring with a higher top speed depending on rider feedback. Email info@pedalcell.com to inquire about testing this high-speed O-ring!

  • Compatibility

    CadenceX Mounting and Charging Compatibility Questions

  • What lights are recommended?

    PedalCell can power nearly any light that is charged over USB. For the best experience, we recommend that riders use USB battery-powered lights with "pass-through" charging; the ability to use the light while it's being charged. Lights typically list this functionality in their description or FAQ such as below.

    USB lights without an integrated battery can be used as well. These lights are typically made to be powered by a battery pack. Thus, we advise riders use an intermediately battery pack between these lights and PedalCell. A battery pack with "pass-through" charging capability is recommended.

  • Which battery packs work best?

    PedalCell can charge nearly any USB battery pack. For the best experience, we recommend that riders use batteries with "pass-through" charging; the ability to use the battery while it's being charged. Batteries typically list this functionality in their description or FAQ such as below.

  • How long will the O-Ring last?

    PedalCell's O-ring is custom-specced to balance performance with long-term durability. It is recommended to swap every ~2,000 miles. Additional O-Rings can be bought separately or included in the Ultimate Bundle on the PedalCell store.

  • Can PedalCell mount in the rear?

    PedalCell supports mounting on the rear rim via the chainstays of some Tadpole Trikes and bicycles. Those directions can be seen here.

  • How does PedalCell work in slippery conditions (rain, snow, mud, etc.)?

    Power dropouts from rim debris are rare and go unnoticed with PedalCell thanks to our mechanical and electrical design. Our Generator's spring and o-ring are spec'd to maintain grip in wet conditions as well as operate around debris. In the case of lost power, PedalCell's CadenceX technology operates as a backup to supplement charge until contact is made.

  • What types of cables should I use?

    Use the USB cable provided with your device for best performance. PedalCell includes a USB A-C adapter in the box for devices that do not have a Type-C cable. We also sell low-profile USB cables with UV/splash resistance on our store for a more tangle-free experience.

  • Is my bicycle (or trike) compatible with PedalCell?

    PedalCell is compatible with the majority of bicycles and delta trikes with front forks equal to or smaller than a 1″ X 2″ oval.As a rule of thumb, we do not recommend PedalCell be mounted on extreme road/aero/competition bikes or heavy suspension mountain bikes due to their unusual/large fork geometries. In addition, we do not recommend mounting with carbon rims due to their limited heat dissipation and willingness to handle force on the rim face.

    PedalCell also supports mounting on the chainstays of some Tadpole Trikes and bicycles. Those directions can be seen here.

  • How much space does my rim need?

    PedalCell can work on most non-carbon rims, including those that do not have braking surfaces. The O-Ring needs approximately 4.7mm of contact area on a rim. This is about <1/2 the surface area needed by most rim brake pads.

  • Does PedalCell work with panniers?

    Yes! See below for PedalCell mounting on a Trek 520 with attached panniers.

  • Why is PedalCell mounted on the rim instead of the hub?

    We chose the rim for three primary reasons over a bicycle hub:

    • Power Output: The outside of a bicycle rim spins monumentally faster than the inside hub. Thus, our generator spins at higher RPMs, making it more efficient and creating more power in a compact package. While some dynamos have attempted to generate more power on the hub, the trade-offs in complexity, cost, and weight are extremely high. Thus, we chose the rim as the least path of resistance (no pun intended )
    • Installation: PedalCell can be installed or uninstalled in minutes on most bicycle designs. Dynamo hubs, on the other hand, require time-intensive wheel builds that are difficult to construct. Moreover, hubs are only compatible with certain wheel setups, making their cross-compatibility limited if you decide to switch between bicycles or rim types.
    • Decoupling: We believe that you should have the option to completely deactivite our product if you prefer. Mounting on the rim allows users to mechanically decouple our generator from the rim, thus eliminating all drag. Hub-mounted dynamos require intensive disassemly procedures to remove, making their mechanical drag a permanement burden for most riders.

  • Does my wheel need to spin exactly true?

    No, PedalCell's torsion spring adjusts the generator’s position to maintain optimal contact on rims that do not spin exactly true.

  • Why is there a 40 MPH limit?

    The 40mph limit is for O-ring longevity. At higher speeds, O-Ring stretching can occur which reduces its operating life. Riders will be able to clearly see when this occurs. We recommend that riders decouple from the rim if high speeds are expected for continuous periods. We're considering releasing an o-ring with a higher top speed depending on rider feedback. Email info@pedalcell.com to inquire about testing this high-speed O-ring!

  • Performance/Technology

    Questions relating to the Performance and Technology behind CadenceX

  • Is PedalCell noisy?

    PedalCell is inaudible during use.
    You could see in this video (in which the camera mic is positioned close to the product to pick up noise) that PedalCell is silent, especially once you consider the surrounding wind and drivetrain noise from a bicycle.  

    https://www.facebook.com/PedalCell/videos/490590021889095/

  • What is CadenceX Technology?

    PedalCell's patented CadenceX Technology is the first of its kind in the bicycling space. The technology allows PedalCell to seamlessly supply a charging experience that "just works" for riders while keeping its intricate inner workings in the background.

    CadenceX leverages supercapacitor architecture to stabilize power output at varying ride speeds. Supercapacitors are energy storage, similar to batteries. However, supercapacitors are a much better fit to work with the unstable power output of a cyclist. Supercapacitors have multiple advantages over traditional lithium-ion batteries. These include:

    • Greater efficiency
    • Longer outdoor lifespan
    • Larger temperature operating ranges
    • Faster charge/discharge capabilities

    CadenceX technology allows the supercapacitors to automatically supplement PedalCell's Generator power. CadenceX determines when to activate the supercapacitors based on a host of data from acceleration, device power needs, and speed. CadenceX communicates with algorithms onboard PedalCell's processor to ensure that devices are kept at their fastest charging rate via continuous USB negotiation. Your devices charge is kept constant even when:

    • Slowing down in a turn or up a hill
    • Charging during slow accelerations from a stop
    • Rare Generator skips or slippage on the rim (ie, excessive rim mud buildup, ice, etc. ).
    • Stationary at a stop sign or light
    • And much more...

    CadenceX works alongside PedalCell's custom Generator and proprietary firmware to achieve industry-leading efficiency and power output. CadenceX's supercapacitor architecture is patented in the USA (patent no. 10727688) and is currently pending in AU, CA, and the EU.

  • How long will the O-Ring last?

    PedalCell's O-ring is custom-specced to balance performance with long-term durability. It is recommended to swap every ~2,000 miles. Additional O-Rings can be bought separately or included in the Ultimate Bundle on the PedalCell store.

  • How does PedalCell work in slippery conditions (rain, snow, mud, etc.)?

    Power dropouts from rim debris are rare and go unnoticed with PedalCell thanks to our mechanical and electrical design. Our Generator's spring and o-ring are spec'd to maintain grip in wet conditions as well as operate around debris. In the case of lost power, PedalCell's CadenceX technology operates as a backup to supplement charge until contact is made.

  • Is PedalCell's power and efficiency data public?
  • How does PedalCell achieve high power and efficiency compared to dynamo hubs?

    PedalCell is a clean-sheet design. While it may have exterior similarities to a traditional bottle dynamo, it does not share any of its components with any dynamo. Unlike bicycle dynamos, its Generator, patented CadenceX Technology, and Proprietary Firmware were custom-made to work together from the get-go. Our engineering team spent over half-a-decade packaging each of these components into an easy-to-use product for our users.

    The result: 15-20W peak power with a 70% peak mechanical-to-USB output efficiency.

    Don't believe us? See this announcement and here for raw data.

  • Can PedalCell handle rain, sleet, snow, etc.?

    PedalCell is validated to survive the outdoors as "weather-resistant" with 11 anti-moisture seals to protect against rain, sleet, snow, etc. We've tested our device under pressurized water and brutal midwestern winters to verify this claim.

    Why we don't use the term "water-proof": Riders must prevent liquid from being in the Smart Power Hub's ports while powered-on. While water will not enter inside the device, the liquid can corrode the port's pins while the device is powered on. This is a limitation of all USB ports and not a limitation of PedalCell. Our rubber USB-C plugs help prevent this from happening, however, a simple shake of the Power Hub and waiting until it dries can get water to leave. Using the Power Hub in a bag or pointing downward usually makes this a non-issue. As a general rule of thumb, do not allow water to enter the USB port.

    There are a few more notes that we ask customers to keep in mind:

    • We encourage riders to stay mindful while using their electronics (such as your smartphone or lights) in poor conditions.
    • It is worth noting that while PedalCell's CadenceX technology can smooth out most generator fluctuations experienced from slippery rims, use in extremely wet/slippery conditions can impact performance.

  • What is PedalCell's warranty?

    Every PedalCell comes with a limited 2-year warranty and lifetime email support. PedalCell's warranty covers defects and product failure within intended use. Customers can contact us at info@pedalcell.com at all times both in and outside the warranty period with any questions. Read more in our Terms of Use.

  • Does PedalCell require maintenance?

    We recommend the replacement of the O-Ring (sold in store) every 2-3Kmiles. Riders should pay attention to PedalCell's is mounted on the bicycle rim before and after every ride to ensure that the device is properly aligned. We recommend re-tightening/adjusting the front fork clamp at least once a month (or more if ridden heavily) to maintain ideal performance.

  • Why is PedalCell mounted on the rim instead of the hub?

    We chose the rim for three primary reasons over a bicycle hub:

    • Power Output: The outside of a bicycle rim spins monumentally faster than the inside hub. Thus, our generator spins at higher RPMs, making it more efficient and creating more power in a compact package. While some dynamos have attempted to generate more power on the hub, the trade-offs in complexity, cost, and weight are extremely high. Thus, we chose the rim as the least path of resistance (no pun intended )
    • Installation: PedalCell can be installed or uninstalled in minutes on most bicycle designs. Dynamo hubs, on the other hand, require time-intensive wheel builds that are difficult to construct. Moreover, hubs are only compatible with certain wheel setups, making their cross-compatibility limited if you decide to switch between bicycles or rim types.
    • Decoupling: We believe that you should have the option to completely deactivite our product if you prefer. Mounting on the rim allows users to mechanically decouple our generator from the rim, thus eliminating all drag. Hub-mounted dynamos require intensive disassemly procedures to remove, making their mechanical drag a permanement burden for most riders.

  • Is PedalCell theft-resistant?

    The included hex bolts should deter most thieves from stealing your PedalCell (no more difficult to steal than your caliper brakes or handlebars). However, we do sell a security bolt and screwdriver kit in our store for riders that want an extra piece of mind when parking their bicycle outdoors for extended periods. This kit is included with our Ultimate Bundles.

  • Why is there a 40 MPH limit?

    The 40mph limit is for O-ring longevity. At higher speeds, O-Ring stretching can occur which reduces its operating life. Riders will be able to clearly see when this occurs. We recommend that riders decouple from the rim if high speeds are expected for continuous periods. We're considering releasing an o-ring with a higher top speed depending on rider feedback. Email info@pedalcell.com to inquire about testing this high-speed O-ring!

  • What can I power with PedalCell?

    PedalCell uses USB-C ports which is backwards compatible with most USB devices and supports the plethora of current and future USB-C devices. Examples include bike lights, smartphones, GPS navigators, electronic shifters, cameras, and more.

  • Which USB Charging Standards are supported?

    PedalCell implements the following standards for its high power port:

    USB-C CC 5V, 3A*

    Dedicated Downstream Port: 500mA + 900mA

    USB Battery Charging Specification BC1.2 + YD/T 1591-2009: up to 1.5A

    1.2-V mode: up to 2A

    2.7-V Apple device profile: up to 2.4A

    A high-quality cable must be used to see expected performance. PedalCell's CadenceX technology constantly re-negotiates any time there is a speed change to ensure devices are kept in their highest charge state while maintaining a safe output.

    *PedalCell consciously limits the USB-C CC profile 5V, 3A to a maximum of 2.4A. Device compatibility is not affected by this limit.

  • How much does PedalCell weigh?

    PedalCell weighs approximately 1 lb.

  • Can PedalCell power devices while stopped?

    PedalCell's low-power port (3W output) is prioritized over the high-power port. Thus, lights and other USB devices plugged into the low power port stay powered for up to 30 seconds when stopped depending on their power draw and riding behavior. It is worth noting that most USB devices have built-in rechargeable batteries, allowing them to stay powered for many hours when stopped. We recommend riders who need long-term charging when stopped/off their bike use PedalCell to charge a small external battery (~5000 mAh).

  • Is PedalCell a battery?

    PedalCell is not a battery. Batteries are great for storing power long-term but are not the best solution for real-time power generation on bicycles. We chose to incorporate supercapacitors over batteries in our product due to their advantages of.
    1) Higher charge/discharge efficiency
    2) 10X longer lifespan
    3) Wider outdoor temperature ranges
    4) Safety for volaitle power
    Riders who require long-term storage can charge USB battery packs with PedalCell.

  • Does PedalCell add drag?

    As with any bicycle generator, PedalCell does add drag. While there is no such thing as free power, we designed multiple features to ensure noticeable drag is minimal to non-existent to users.

    1) High-Efficiency: PedalCell's mechanical-to- USB output is validated by a 3rd party to have a class-leading peak efficiency of 70%. Read more about these tests here.

    2) Dynamic output: PedalCell only provides the power your devices need. For example, if your phone is almost fully charged with the screen off, our product will output a smaller amount of power.

    3) 3W lock: PedalCell's Prioritized port locks max output at 3W for power-conscious riders.

    5) Speed-based Output: We dynamically adjust our power at different speeds. For example, we don't deliver 20W at 8 km/h. This curve lowers the chance of noticeable drag.

    6) Mechanical decoupling: We provide users the flexibility to completely disconnect PedalCell from the rim when not needed, thus eliminating all mechanical drag.

  • Does PedalCell store power?

    PedalCell's CadenceX technology maintains power output during speed modulations, unideal conditions (such as heavy downpour or in dirt), and while stopped for up to 30 seconds at a time.

  • I did the math, you can only output a 15W max from your USBs. Where does the other power go?

    Good question! In addition to the USBs themselves, PedalCell uses the additional generator power headroom to intelligently power its patented supercapacitor technology. Also, as a rule of thumb, we always leave more power on the table to account for efficiency losses and for use in less-than-ideal conditions.

  • Can PedalCell be used on an electric bicycle (eBike)? How about charging my eBike battery?

    Yes, PedalCell can be used to charge USB devices on any eBike that is compatible with PedalCell's install criteria. However, PedalCell is not made to charge an eBike's battery.

  • Purchasing/Support

    Questions relating to PedalCell Purchasing and Support

  • What is PedalCell's warranty?

    Every PedalCell comes with a limited 2-year warranty and lifetime email support. PedalCell's warranty covers defects and product failure within intended use. Customers can contact us at info@pedalcell.com at all times both in and outside the warranty period with any questions. Read more in our Terms of Use.

  • Where can I buy PedalCell?

    If you are a consumer, visit our storeIf you represent a company or distributor, please fill out the form above.

  • How much does PedalCell cost?

    PedalCell is priced at $299.99. We also offer the Ultimate PedalCell bundle which includes our whole accessories catalog for $399.99 but can be ordered $50 off here. To inquire about our distributor pricing catalog, please reach out to us on this form.