In the two weeks since our last update we have:
- Received and cataloged dozens of Beta 2.0 round boards.
- Analyzed each board that has been returned. From this we've identified additional hardware improvements for the Beta 2.1 build.
- Began completing hardware updates to each returned board.
Receiving Returned Boards
Bringing nearly 100 boards back to the shop isn't something our warehouse is necessarily designed for, so we had to make some adjustments to our shop's organization that will continue into next week. We've designed a system that allows us to carefully track each tester's board and the changes that have been made to it.
Beta 2.1 Hardware Improvements
Along with firmware adjustments, we are making the following hardware changes to each board going out in the next batch:
Updated Footpad Mounting
The screws we were using previously were threading into, and eventually tearing into rubber footpad covers. This could cause them to come loose and even come off. We've fixed this.
Some beta testers noticed that one of their front LEDs was not shining properly. We are replacing these for each board. We're going to keep close track of whether these malfunction again in Beta 2.1.
Motor Arm Mounting
We've adjusted the way the motor arm mounts to the rear hanger. The new approach is more secure and will make the belt slightly tighter. It may feel too tight with a brand new belt, but just right once the belt breaks in.
We are replacing the motor pulley on each board with a new design that will counter belt slipping.
We are making an adjustment to each charger which will prevent internal overheating during charging. If you have sent your board but did not include your charger, please send us an email and we'll give you a return label. We need everyone's charger back before we can ship out your Beta 2.1 unit.
The firmware has been our main focus over the past few weeks and we've made solid strides fixing all the issues identified during the Beta 2.0 testing process.
We've increased the redundancy in the boards' "save states" so now the board consistently saves and keeps its speed mode. Also we have slightly adjusted the LED blink rates to make it more clear what speed mode you are in.
Battery Meter Faults
Some riders in the Beta 2.0 testing group noticed their battery dying while the battery meter still (incorrectly) stated over 25% charge (blinking blue). We have fixed this.
We've adjusted the way coasting works after you release the throttle. The result is a smoother, more consistent feel.
Smoothing Out Braking
We have removed instabilities occasionally felt during braking.
While we have already begun many of the hardware updates listed above, we need to wait until the firmware has been finalized and tested before we can begin shipping out Beta 2.1. We hope to finalize this firmware and begin shipping boards this week (9/5).
With the added complexity and increased changes with the Beta 2.1 build, we are going to extend the length of the testing period. Please view the updated timeline below:
From the Founders
Thanks for your patience and support. The boards are riding better than ever and we can't wait to hear your feedback on the Beta 2.1 build.
Ben, Geoff, and the ZBoard Team