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Electric bikes.



 
 
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  #11  
Old January 17th 11, 09:12 PM posted to rec.bicycles.misc
Fred
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Posts: 21
Default Electric bikes.

Mike Jacoubowsky wrote:
"SMS" wrote in message
...
On 1/10/2011 3:37 PM, Fred wrote:
I think I might add an electric bike to my collection of trusty and
rusty two wheelers. . They look like a bit of fun with a practical
use. Am looking at the Trek sprint 7 or the Wisper 905. Anyone
know much about these
things? Or any other brands?


I met the owner of Pacific EBikes at Interbike, waiting for an
airport shuttle. He was quite a character. He was railing about the
$2000 poorly designed e-Bikes, of which there were a great many at
the show. He has a factory in Suzhou China which produces his
products, which are all under $US 1000.
http://www.pacificebike.com/ You really want to avoid an eBike where
the battery pack is placed
over the rear wheel. It should be in the center of the bike. The
Wisper 905 line looks good. The Trek Sprint 7 must be a model not
sold in the U.S., but all the Trek electric bikes on the U.S. web
site look like a regular bike that they just stuck a motor and
battery onto.


Aside from "balance" when picking the bike up, what is your issue
with the battery over the rear wheel? Modern batteries aren't very
heavy, and the rear wheel is so over-built that additional loading is
not a factor. The advantage to having it placed as Trek does is
perception- it doesn't "look" like an e-bike at first glance. People
like that. I thought that was silly at first, but old dogs can
sometimes be taught new tricks.
The features people should really be looking for in an e-bike are-

#1: Ease of wheel removal. There are e-bikes out there that can take
well over half an hour to remove and reinstall. This is particularly
true for some of the less-expensive units sold at Best Buy.

#2: High-quality charger & decent battery warranty. The two tend to go
together.

#3: Good track record and/or company standing behind the product that
will be there for you two years down the road when some proprietary
part gives out that is no longer available. For the companies with a
track record, they'll have the part. For others, they'll likely go to
significant length to take care of you. We get customers bringing in
e-bikes frequently that are just a few years old for which you cannot
get what's needed to make them functional. Hate that. And of course,
no matter where it was purchased, they blame the shop that can't fix
it for them (us).
--Mike Jacoubowsky


Thanks. So what are the pros/cons other comments re front drive vs rear hub
drive? I occasionally do long tours -around say 100-150 plus km (60 - 100
miles?) per day with panniers front and rear and terrain is hilly. (South
Island of New Zealand).. I realise no battery will handle that distance -
but quite happy to peddle for a fair bit of the way. Never ridden one but
assume they aren't much different from a std. bike to just peddle on
reasonably flat roads apart from a bit of weight.


Ads
  #12  
Old January 17th 11, 10:12 PM posted to rec.bicycles.misc
Wes Newell
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 74
Default Electric bikes.

On Tue, 18 Jan 2011 09:12:14 +1300, Fred wrote:

Thanks. So what are the pros/cons other comments re front drive vs rear
hub drive?


From my research, front drive gives better balance. The drawback is that
the front forks aren't as strong and it's not recommended for use with
aluminum or suspension forks. Other than that I'd probably prefer a
front hub motor.

I occasionally do long tours -around say 100-150 plus km (60
- 100 miles?) per day with panniers front and rear and terrain is hilly.
(South Island of New Zealand).. I realise no battery will handle that
distance - but quite happy to peddle for a fair bit of the way. Never
ridden one but assume they aren't much different from a std. bike to
just peddle on reasonably flat roads apart from a bit of weight.


Most hub motors are direct drive and thus have some resistance when not
in use. But with a regen controller, they provide battery charging when
not in use. Personally I don't know if this is really of much value as I
haven't tried it. A geared hub motor won't regen, but has virtually no
resistance when not in use. Which is better? I don't know.

Since you're riding hilly long distances, you may want to consider
something like a chain drive motor tied into the gear system of the bike.
It has the advantage of being able to use the gears for both low and high
torque. It also has no resistance and claims about twice the distance on
a battery charge compared to hub motors. Something that may be very
useful for long rides.

http://www.cyclone-tw.com/index.html
http://www.cyclone-usa.com/performance.php

Disclaimer:
I have no personal experience with any of these. All info based on my
research.

Walmart sells the Ezip Trailz bike for $320 complete with battery pack in
case anyone is looking for a good deal?

  #13  
Old January 19th 11, 03:46 PM posted to rec.bicycles.misc
dgk
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 827
Default Electric bikes.

On Sun, 16 Jan 2011 18:10:22 -0800, SMS
wrote:

On 1/10/2011 3:37 PM, Fred wrote:
I think I might add an electric bike to my collection of trusty and rusty
two wheelers. . They look like a bit of fun with a practical use. Am
looking at the Trek sprint 7 or the Wisper 905. Anyone know much about these
things? Or any other brands?


I met the owner of Pacific EBikes at Interbike, waiting for an airport
shuttle. He was quite a character. He was railing about the $2000 poorly
designed e-Bikes, of which there were a great many at the show. He has a
factory in Suzhou China which produces his products, which are all under
$US 1000. http://www.pacificebike.com/

You really want to avoid an eBike where the battery pack is placed over
the rear wheel. It should be in the center of the bike. ..


Poppycock. In theory, the weight would be better placed in the middle,
but I have a Trek with the battery over the rear wheel because Ebikes
are not technically allowed where I live and that makes it much less
obvious that there is a battery on the bike. Since the battery weighs
about 5-7 lbs (my weight fluctuates that much) weight distribution is
not an issue. The Pacific Bikes actually have a stronger battery than
the Treks (10ah to 6.4ah), but the Bionx motor is far more efficient
so the battery weight is low. The Pacific Bikes are 250 watt, the
Treks are 350.

As is mostly the case in life, you get what you pay for. I did look at
Pacific Bikes before I bought the Trek. There are no specifications
about the components of the bikes - mine is a Trek Valencia, a damn
good commuter bike even without the electronics.

I waited several years to get an Ebike. I wanted one which was a good
bike first; I did not want a motor scooter. The Valencia has a Shimano
M361 crank, not the best but very good, and no Pacific Bike had a
front crank set because they max at 7 speed.

The Bionx system used by Trek also has regenerative braking as well as
the ability to simply put it into a recharge mode while going down
hills or while pedaling along. That makes a huge difference in battery
life since I use a fair amount of power going up the big bridge and
then pedal fairly hard going down to regenerate the power.

Before I got this bike I used to think that there should be some way
to save the energy generated going down a big hill so I could use it
going up the other side. Of course, there's always a light or stop
sign at the bottom of the hill. Well, my bike does exactly what I
wanted..

Considering that a Bionx PL-350 kit is almost $2000, do you really
think that someone can sell a bike for $900 that is anywhere near as
good as the Trek?

  #14  
Old January 19th 11, 08:31 PM posted to rec.bicycles.misc
Wes Newell
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 74
Default Electric bikes.

On Wed, 19 Jan 2011 09:46:56 -0500, dgk wrote:

Considering that a Bionx PL-350 kit is almost $2000, do you really think
that someone can sell a bike for $900 that is anywhere near as good as
the Trek?


What does it matter. The bike I have now cost $99 new.

http://www.walmart.com/ip/NEXT-Avalo...-Bike/14272884

I just started riding it about 4 months ago. Before that I had the
womens model and put about 500 miles on it. So far I've put about 800
miles on it and it shows no sign of wear. It's only a 7 speed, so I
recently ordered a 21 speed of the same type for $200.

http://www.amazon.com/Kent-Sierra-Ma.../dp/B000BT9VSM

With a little care, both of these should last years. $900 for a bike. You
don't want to know what I think about that.:-)

As for the motor kit, I wouldn't spend more than $300 for any of them.
  #15  
Old January 20th 11, 03:21 PM posted to rec.bicycles.misc
dgk
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 827
Default Electric bikes.

On Wed, 19 Jan 2011 19:31:28 +0000 (UTC), Wes Newell
wrote:

On Wed, 19 Jan 2011 09:46:56 -0500, dgk wrote:

Considering that a Bionx PL-350 kit is almost $2000, do you really think
that someone can sell a bike for $900 that is anywhere near as good as
the Trek?


What does it matter. The bike I have now cost $99 new.

http://www.walmart.com/ip/NEXT-Avalo...-Bike/14272884

I just started riding it about 4 months ago. Before that I had the
womens model and put about 500 miles on it. So far I've put about 800
miles on it and it shows no sign of wear. It's only a 7 speed, so I
recently ordered a 21 speed of the same type for $200.

http://www.amazon.com/Kent-Sierra-Ma.../dp/B000BT9VSM

With a little care, both of these should last years. $900 for a bike. You
don't want to know what I think about that.:-)

As for the motor kit, I wouldn't spend more than $300 for any of them.



It will show signs of wear because the components are ****. The chain
and cassette will start to go and it won't pay to bother fixing them
because it will cost more than the whole bike did. I repeat, you get
what you pay for. You paid for crap. I've put 3000 miles on my bike in
10 months and plan to continue doing so for years.
  #16  
Old January 20th 11, 07:48 PM posted to rec.bicycles.misc
Bill Bushnell
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Posts: 121
Default Electric bikes.

Fred wrote:
Thanks. So what are the pros/cons other comments re front drive vs rear hub
drive? I occasionally do long tours -around say 100-150 plus km (60 - 100
miles?) per day with panniers front and rear and terrain is hilly. (South
Island of New Zealand).. I realise no battery will handle that distance -
but quite happy to peddle for a fair bit of the way. Never ridden one but
assume they aren't much different from a std. bike to just peddle on
reasonably flat roads apart from a bit of weight.


Not knowing your details (weight, strength, speed, aero drag, etc.) I can only
make a conservative guess: you'll need something on the order of 1 kwh of
battery capacity to ride a hilly 100 miles with some load. You'll need to
contribute about half the energy through pedaling.

You won't find many batteries with this much capacity unless you run them in
parallel. Consider a 24 volt system or 36 volts, tops. More voltage will only
encourage you to ride faster and consume more of your available energy
fighting wind.

--
Bill Bushnell
http://pobox.com/~bushnell/
  #17  
Old January 20th 11, 07:57 PM posted to rec.bicycles.misc
Bill Bushnell
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 121
Default Electric bikes.

dgk wrote:
On Sun, 16 Jan 2011 18:10:22 -0800, SMS
wrote:
You really want to avoid an eBike where the battery pack is placed over
the rear wheel. It should be in the center of the bike. ..


Poppycock. In theory, the weight would be better placed in the middle,
but I have a Trek with the battery over the rear wheel because Ebikes
are not technically allowed where I live and that makes it much less
obvious that there is a battery on the bike. Since the battery weighs
about 5-7 lbs (my weight fluctuates that much) weight distribution is
not an issue. The Pacific Bikes actually have a stronger battery than
the Treks (10ah to 6.4ah), but the Bionx motor is far more efficient
so the battery weight is low. The Pacific Bikes are 250 watt, the
Treks are 350.


To have the smallest effect on handling, one would ideally mount the battery at
the center of mass of bike+rider. Since that is seldom practical, the next best
location is directly below the center of mass. Battery mounting location becomes
more important with a heavier battery. For small batteries of 5-7 lbs, the
effect of suboptimal placement is small.

Before I got this bike I used to think that there should be some way
to save the energy generated going down a big hill so I could use it
going up the other side. Of course, there's always a light or stop
sign at the bottom of the hill. Well, my bike does exactly what I
wanted..


Unless you descend hills slowly (no faster than, say, 15 mph) or you and your
bike have a high mass to aero drag ratio (e.g. streamliner or aerodynamic
velomobile), you aren't going to get much back from regenerative braking.

http://www.ecospeed.com/regenbraking.pdf

--
Bill Bushnell
http://pobox.com/~bushnell/
  #18  
Old January 20th 11, 08:04 PM posted to rec.bicycles.misc
Tºm Shermªn™ °_°[_2_]
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 1,270
Default Electric bikes.

On 1/20/2011 12:57 PM, Bill Bushnell wrote:
wrote:
On Sun, 16 Jan 2011 18:10:22 -0800,
wrote:
You really want to avoid an eBike where the battery pack is placed over
the rear wheel. It should be in the center of the bike. ..


Poppycock. In theory, the weight would be better placed in the middle,
but I have a Trek with the battery over the rear wheel because Ebikes
are not technically allowed where I live and that makes it much less
obvious that there is a battery on the bike. Since the battery weighs
about 5-7 lbs (my weight fluctuates that much) weight distribution is
not an issue. The Pacific Bikes actually have a stronger battery than
the Treks (10ah to 6.4ah), but the Bionx motor is far more efficient
so the battery weight is low. The Pacific Bikes are 250 watt, the
Treks are 350.


To have the smallest effect on handling, one would ideally mount the battery at
the center of mass of bike+rider. Since that is seldom practical, the next best
location is directly below the center of mass. Battery mounting location becomes
more important with a heavier battery. For small batteries of 5-7 lbs, the
effect of suboptimal placement is small.

Before I got this bike I used to think that there should be some way
to save the energy generated going down a big hill so I could use it
going up the other side. Of course, there's always a light or stop
sign at the bottom of the hill. Well, my bike does exactly what I
wanted..


Unless you descend hills slowly (no faster than, say, 15 mph) or you and your
bike have a high mass to aero drag ratio (e.g. streamliner or aerodynamic
velomobile), you aren't going to get much back from regenerative braking.

http://www.ecospeed.com/regenbraking.pdf


I plan to have a velomobile, possibly with electrical assist, before the
year is out.

--
Tºm Shermªn - 42.435731,-83.985007
I am a vehicular cyclist.
  #19  
Old January 20th 11, 08:19 PM posted to rec.bicycles.misc
Wes Newell
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 74
Default Electric bikes.

On Thu, 20 Jan 2011 09:21:47 -0500, dgk wrote:

It will show signs of wear because the components are ****. The chain
and cassette will start to go and it won't pay to bother fixing them
because it will cost more than the whole bike did. I repeat, you get
what you pay for. You paid for crap.


Funny, because the same crap components are on bikes that cost 3 times as
much. As for cost to replace the *freewheel* and chain, well less than
$20. I don't know who you are trying to convince, unless it's yourself.
It's just a bike. There's absolutely no reasonable reason to spend more
than $200 for one. Actually, the $100 bike will probably last as long.
  #20  
Old January 21st 11, 02:03 AM posted to rec.bicycles.misc
Tºm Shermªn™ °_°[_2_]
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 1,270
Default Electric bikes.

On 1/20/2011 1:19 PM, Wes Newell wrote:
On Thu, 20 Jan 2011 09:21:47 -0500, dgk wrote:

It will show signs of wear because the components are ****. The chain
and cassette will start to go and it won't pay to bother fixing them
because it will cost more than the whole bike did. I repeat, you get
what you pay for. You paid for crap.


Funny, because the same crap components are on bikes that cost 3 times as
much. As for cost to replace the *freewheel* and chain, well less than
$20. I don't know who you are trying to convince, unless it's yourself.
It's just a bike. There's absolutely no reasonable reason to spend more
than $200 for one. Actually, the $100 bike will probably last as long.


Unless you want something that is more comfortable, durable, reliable,
and enjoyable to ride. The flattening of the curve of diminishing
returns is generally in the $800 range for road bikes and hard-tail
MTB's, higher for FS MTB and 'bents, and much higher for velomobiles [1].

[1] There are no cheap commercial velomobiles, since even the least
expensive is high quality.

--
Tºm Shermªn - 42.435731,-83.985007
I am a vehicular cyclist.
 




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