Motorized bike for commute TO work....pedal back?
OK, my workplace is about 35 miles on the roads I would need to take to be safe on a motorized or non motorized bike.
Has anyone ever used a motorized bike or added one for this purpose?
I need to get there a little quicker than I need to be home...and would rather change clothesfor the pedaling on the way back, not when I arrive.
I'm pretty much the same way, in a rush to get there, but always take 3 or 4 times longer to get home, just wandering around and enjoying the trip. Can't bike to work most of the time because I have to haul about 400 pounds of tools,(on a light day) but still have the same attitude.
As for the power to, pedal home, question, almost sounds tailer made for an electric bike, been thinking along those lines for a while, a few 'homebuilts' I've seen on the web claim a 50 mile range under power,(would seem to indicate a slow ride?) but the extra weight I think would be a problem going up hill if the batteries were dead. Though if you coasted downhill you'd likely extend that range.
I've been thinking of it because its a condition of my employment that there is always power at the job sites, So I'd be able to charge up at work.
possibly a small powered trailer, easily unhooked for normal riding?
My experiments in this direction have only gone as far as checking the ability of my porter cable 19.2v cordless saw to move my bike with me on it, works good, but the range with the regular nicad battery pack is about 4 blocks and it's done. Figure maybe with a deep cycle marine battery it will improve a great deal.
Also, 4 stroke weed whacker motors are pretty potent little motors. motor, jackshaft, and a small fuel tankwill turn your bike into a long range cruiser.
Burnt Orange Blood
I have an electric bike for the same reason. I want to do plenty of pedaling to get stronger and faster. I bought a Lashout for about $700. There are kits you can add to an existing bike -- from what I've learned, Crystalite and Wilderness Electric get pretty good reviews. Giant makes a the LaFree Lite for about $1500 and the TidalForce is supposed to be pretty amazing but they run $2500 and up.
The thing to consider is that the batteries can be very heavy and their range can be limited, depending on what you buy. For me, the fact that my bike can't take me the entire 17 hilly miles without me pedaling all the time is a good thing -- because I don't want to be tempted just to sit there and let the motor do the work. But it is nice to have some help up the hills while I'm training.
Here are a couple of sites that you might find helpful if you wish to research further:
I ride 24 miles into work and take commuter vanpool back to the neighborhood, then ride 1 mile back from the van stop to home
My one concern would be locking it up. The Giant La Frees and also the Giant Suede Es are really sweet looking. I would be afraid of someone stealing it. Plus with the motor, your bike will be heavier. You also may want to check out the eGo cycle.
Burnt Orange Blood
Some of the more expensive bikes have keys so the bikes can't be "started." My battery is detachable so I take it in with me and recharge. Otherwise, I lock the bike just like any other bike -- or lock it to my trunk rack, which is also locked to the inside of my trunk.
Possibly the best deal I've found so far for electrifying a bike can be found here:
You can outfit your existing or other bike with up to 500W (the legal limit) of motorized power, which should be enough to get you to work! It claims 20+ miles per charge, but I think that's if you're not pedalling much. You might be able to squeeze 35 miles out of it, if you pedal enough and go easy on the throttle.
Alternatively, you could get a small 50cc scooter which would easily have enough range to get you to work and back, though you forego the health benefits.
I just installed a Kings Motorbikes motor on my Schwinn Suburban for the same reason, and to save money on gas. 150 mpg, and a fairly easy install, took aobut 10 hours, some bikes take less time. $135 on Ebay for his motors. Email me if ya want a pic.
Originally Posted by mrbean1957
I'd be very interested.
Thanks to all the people who have responded so far, a lot of things to consider here.