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What would be your ideal E-Bike?

Old 09-25-18, 04:00 AM
  #1  
nikunj_97
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Arrow What would be your ideal E-Bike?

I am trying to understand what exactly people look before buying an E-Bike, also problems with current E-Bikes in the market. Let's discuss the following points:

1.Basic Features

2.Exciting Features

3.Problems with current E-Bikes

4.Price range

5. Distance travelled in a single charge

Last edited by nikunj_97; 09-25-18 at 04:02 AM. Reason: forgot to add something
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Old 09-25-18, 05:54 AM
  #2  
dabac
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I'm not entirely clear on what your categories mean.
IMO, so far most ebikes have been designed for people who don't particularly like riding that much.
Upright positions, short travel sus forks, big batteries, suboptimal gear range.
Me, I LIKE pedalling. I'm quite happy to ride myself sweaty on a daily basis.
But the commute is getting long, particularly with the bike kitted for winter.
I'd like a rider's bike.
To me, that'd mean no suspension.
I'm entirely happy with spinning out at 25-28 mph.
Should remain rideable should the battery run down.
Rather a smaller battery than a whopping range.
A decent forward lean.
Rack and fenders.
If drop bars, should have interrupter levers.
Disc braked.
Should be mid-motor so that I can switch betwen wheelsets easily.
Thru axle (front) wheel.
Clearance to run 35-40 mm studded tires.
As much a regular bicycle as possible, with only enough electrification to take the edge off the commute so that I'm fit to ride again the next morning.
They're beginning to appear, but they're fairly few and expensive yet.
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Old 09-25-18, 09:09 AM
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You need to specify your requirements first, commute or recreation, distance traveled, elevation gain, wind, weight, etc. There are several pretty good bikes for various disciplines now, Stromer for commuting, too many to list for off road. I built a 35 pound BBS02 bike (3.5 pound 52V, 6 ah battery) that rides fine with no assist and I use Level 1 (of 5) the other half of the time. What I'd like is a mid-motor half the weight of the BBS02. GNG seems to be developing one and I can envision a 26 - 28 pound dirt bike.
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Old 09-25-18, 09:14 AM
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For me:
1. Add no more than a couple of pounds.
2. Cost no more than a couple of hundred more.
3. Give 10-20% boost for max of 15 minutes.
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Old 09-25-18, 09:19 AM
  #5  
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Mid drive L&H Bullitt 'long john' with 2 batteries .. cargo, car replacement, Bosch - Rohloff.. drivetrain..
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Old 09-25-18, 01:45 PM
  #6  
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Originally Posted by dabac View Post
I'm not entirely clear on what your categories mean.
IMO, so far most ebikes have been designed for people who don't particularly like riding that much.
Upright positions, short travel sus forks, big batteries, suboptimal gear range.
Me, I LIKE pedalling. I'm quite happy to ride myself sweaty on a daily basis.
But the commute is getting long, particularly with the bike kitted for winter.
I'd like a rider's bike.
To me, that'd mean no suspension.
I'm entirely happy with spinning out at 25-28 mph.
Should remain rideable should the battery run down.
Rather a smaller battery than a whopping range.
A decent forward lean.
Rack and fenders.
If drop bars, should have interrupter levers.
Disc braked.
Should be mid-motor so that I can switch betwen wheelsets easily.
Thru axle (front) wheel.
Clearance to run 35-40 mm studded tires.
As much a regular bicycle as possible, with only enough electrification to take the edge off the commute so that I'm fit to ride again the next morning.
They're beginning to appear, but they're fairly few and expensive yet.
Same as above, plus long wheelbase with plenty of space between the seat post and the rear fender. I'd like to be able to fit 50-622 Schwalbe Big Ben or equivalent tires; on wide rims equivalent to Velocity Cliffhangers.
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Old 09-25-18, 08:38 PM
  #7  
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My ideal bike would be a Riese and Müller Supercharger Rolhoff HS with the new E-14 hub. I would swap out the bar and stem for titanium (probably something from Moots or TiCycles) and the seat post for Kinekt 2.1. Front fork would ideally be something like a Fox fork with Kashima coating (whatever their top end model is these days in a 100-110mm travel). Brakes would be Magura MT5e or TRP Zurich and those would be hooked up to Supernova M99 Pro and probably stick with the m99 rear light or the B+M Toplight line brake plus (or whatever the e-bike version is). I would probably also swap cranks for the Praxis Works or FSA Carbon cranks and go with some really nice pedals probably like a Crank Bros Stamp 11 or DMR Vault.

I might change a few other bits and bobs on the bike and upgrade things where I can. I basically want a crazy long distance bike with upgraded everything because I hate plain stock bikes with parts that aren't as nice as they could or should be.

I would also happily take a similar build but with a titanium frame (with integrated Ti rack) single Powertube battery and carbon fork (like a Rodeo Labs Spork) and probably an XTR Di2 drivetrain or possibly XX1 Eagle but building it more as a road hybrid than anything else. Would probably build with White Industries CLD Hubs laced up to HED Belgium Plus rims and most everything else would be similar.
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Old 09-25-18, 08:58 PM
  #8  
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Originally Posted by dabac View Post
I'm not entirely clear on what your categories mean.
IMO, so far most ebikes have been designed for people who don't particularly like riding that much.
Upright positions, short travel sus forks, big batteries, suboptimal gear range.
Me, I LIKE pedalling. I'm quite happy to ride myself sweaty on a daily basis.
But the commute is getting long, particularly with the bike kitted for winter.
I'd like a rider's bike.
To me, that'd mean no suspension.
I'm entirely happy with spinning out at 25-28 mph.
Should remain rideable should the battery run down.
Rather a smaller battery than a whopping range.
A decent forward lean.
Rack and fenders.
If drop bars, should have interrupter levers.
Disc braked.
Should be mid-motor so that I can switch betwen wheelsets easily.
Thru axle (front) wheel.
Clearance to run 35-40 mm studded tires.
As much a regular bicycle as possible, with only enough electrification to take the edge off the commute so that I'm fit to ride again the next morning.
They're beginning to appear, but they're fairly few and expensive yet.
I added a cophenhagen wheel to an older carbon S-works tricross and it hits most of your wishes. I use it for commuting on Thur or Fri of each week. It doesn't have disc brakes but it does have regenerative braking so I'm able to do most of the ride without using the caliper brakes. My commute is about 31km each way and that uses 50-70% of the battery depending on the wind. Top assisted speed is about 39kph.
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Old 09-26-18, 09:21 AM
  #9  
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1. Minimal added weight (no more than 5 lbs)
2. Easy on/off in seconds, not minutes, so bike can be reverted to traditional when desired
3. Stackable batteries, so you can only carry what you need for a given riding distance (to save more weight)
4. Quick recharge times, so you can boost up during a lunch stop if necessary on longer trips
5. NO proprietary parts, so it can be repaired locally
6. Reasonable price initially and for replacement parts
7. Power and speed options at time of order, depending upon country regulations

As to the bike itself, it would be light, nimble, steel. Beyond that, we all have our preferences for bikes, which is why I'd want an add-on kit that met the above requirements that I could put on ANY bike I owned. Needs change, maybe sometimes I'd want to motorize a cargo bike, sometimes a folder for international traveling, sometimes a road bike for local trips. Why buy 3 e-bikes, when one well-designed kit could work on all 3?

Last edited by linberl; 09-26-18 at 09:24 AM.
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Old 09-27-18, 04:42 PM
  #10  
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A 50mi range with decent assistance while remaining as light weight as possible. The range could be reduced to 30mi if recharge is very quick and it had an easy way to charge on the go. As mentioned, if you could charge up at a lunch stop or something. Disk brakes. More of a commuter geometry. With that it could easily be set up with cruiser style bars for a very relaxed ride, flat bars for those comfortable with that style, or drop bars for those looking for a bit more aggressive, faster ride. The ability to run fat 26” road tires is great in the city, so I’m a fan of 26” wheels. Narrower, lighter, faster 26” road tires are available too. It wouldn’t suit the more performance minded, but I think the majority of e-bike owners aren’t looking for the fastest, drop bar, narrow 700c tired bikes anyway.
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Old 10-12-18, 10:10 PM
  #11  
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Originally Posted by nikunj_97 View Post
I am trying to understand what exactly people look before buying an E-Bike, also problems with current E-Bikes in the market. Let's discuss the following points:

1.Basic Features

2.Exciting Features

3.Problems with current E-Bikes

4.Price range

5. Distance travelled in a single charge
You will have do your own due diligence as it takes up too much time and research to give you the info you want.

One caveat is dont let negative consumer reviews taint your thoughts about the bikes you are looking at. Just go mainstream, popular or well-known brands even if you have to drive far.
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Old 10-14-18, 01:13 AM
  #12  
MikeyMK
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Wide and very long mechanical gearing range.
~
Powerful motor (2kw min) with variable speed PAS.
~
Fully customisable full-function computer.
~
50mph cruise capability.
~
Launch trigger.
~
Road legal mode.
~
12v car horn.
~
Built in lights, Inc floodlight headlamp.
~
Regeneration inc whilst pedalling, whenever needed.
~
Ultra comfortable upright riding position.
~
Child stoker seating.
~
Use of one or two batteries, depending on workload.
~
Long travel (5in) air suspension, front and rear.
~
Hydraulic 4-pot calipers and 203mm floating discs.
~
Thick, bomb-proof two-inch wide Supermoto rims.
~
Fat, grippy tarmac tyres.
~
Full fenders.
~
Fitted double panniers.
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Old 11-23-18, 10:29 PM
  #13  
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A nice aluminum hard tail with a really good seat suspension post (Fox) and a 100mm dual air fork.

battery that hugged the frame so about 2" wide and tall and as long as the frame member adjacent (your choice of locations).

2.50 rear and 2.00 front. Your choice on wheel size.

350w silent gear reduction rear hub motor with freewheel clutch so it completely disengages when just pedaling.

Controller about the sized of a deck of cards with four wires. One to the display, one to battery, one to BB for torque sensing PAS signal, one to the motor - all routed inside the bike chassis.

Tiny display in mono-lcd with control buttons atop one of the shifters. Small wires from brake levers to display to send signal to controller via main display cable.

25 mile range on PAS level 3 out of 5. You want more range, drop back to level 2 or 1. More exercise if riding for distance. More help if carrying loads doing errands.

Real functional gel sport seat that also massages your hiny while riding
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Old 11-08-19, 11:31 AM
  #14  
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I agree Reise-Muller does tend to set the standard, but I would add to that:

1) Drop bars, as they are more aero-dynamic, especially in the high winds of the Midwest;

2) Internally heated batteries so I could ride my bike below 25 degrees F. It is already done in electric cars.

Right now I have to abandon my e-bike for commuting and shopping in the Minnesota winters, as the battery diminishes, even with a foam battery sleeve. My fat bike works fine for recreational riding in the winter, but pulling cargo trailers with a manual bike gets to be a pain, especially when fully loaded with groceries. Also, sometimes you need to get to point B a bit faster.

I find driving cars, very depressing, and unconscionable, except when absolutely required.

Last edited by MinnesotaMiles; 11-08-19 at 11:34 AM. Reason: Clarification.
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Old 11-08-19, 12:12 PM
  #15  
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I have an eMTB with a Bosch mid drive motor. What I'd ideally like to see is virtually free as it requires no change in the mechanical parts. The motor measures both cadence and torque input from pedals. With that information the display could show real time graphs and printouts that show both the energy output of the rider and the motor.
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Old 11-08-19, 12:33 PM
  #16  
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Too dangerous to ride on the road on socal (IMO), so I have my ideal off road bike: hardtail, steel frame, Fox fork, Thudbuster, BBS02 and Luna 52V battery. Been serving me well for four years. I have a Haibike (Yamaha) which languishes mostly since it's not fun (for me) to ride. It gets used as a back up. I'll be looking for a new bike when the manufacturers drop about 10 pounds from their current offerings, and don't have $7K price to get decent suspension.
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Old 11-08-19, 02:50 PM
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All bets off and endless money? here we go, i'm not just building the e-bike i'm also building the bike.
Titanium frame bike, titanium derailleurs, titanium chain? not sure if you can buy the chain, the other 2 you can. steel 80's Shamino shifters, not plastic. Single front gear, 6 rear gears for a 6 speed, anything else is a waste. Bafang ultra 1000 watt, 60 volt brushless gearless rear hub motor. two 60 volt 20 amp hour Panasonic lithium batteries, one frame mounted the other a turtle
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Old 11-08-19, 10:37 PM
  #18  
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I'm easy to please...

The Tern GSD S00 would tick all the boxes for me. I have always had a soft spot in my heart for utilitarian bikes:

https://www.ternbicycles.com/bikes/471/gsd-s00

What's the caveat? Well, the price of course. It is out of my reach, at least for now.

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Old 11-09-19, 08:43 AM
  #19  
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Originally Posted by dabac View Post
I'm not entirely clear on what your categories mean.
IMO, so far most ebikes have been designed for people who don't particularly like riding that much.
Upright positions, short travel sus forks, big batteries, suboptimal gear range.
Me, I LIKE pedalling. I'm quite happy to ride myself sweaty on a daily basis.
But the commute is getting long, particularly with the bike kitted for winter.
I'd like a rider's bike.
To me, that'd mean no suspension.
I'm entirely happy with spinning out at 25-28 mph.
Should remain rideable should the battery run down.
Rather a smaller battery than a whopping range.
A decent forward lean.
Rack and fenders.
If drop bars, should have interrupter levers.
Disc braked.
Should be mid-motor so that I can switch betwen wheelsets easily.
Thru axle (front) wheel.
Clearance to run 35-40 mm studded tires.
As much a regular bicycle as possible, with only enough electrification to take the edge off the commute so that I'm fit to ride again the next morning.
They're beginning to appear, but they're fairly few and expensive yet.
This is my list of needs precisely, and I would add belt drive, IGH rear hub, and some sex appeal (I want an integrated-looking bike, not a rolling parts-shop). The Fazua mid-drive has arrived in the U.S. and this fits my specs. A titanium frame would be my dream, but I'm settling for hydro-formed aluminum.
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Old 11-09-19, 08:50 AM
  #20  
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Originally Posted by 2old View Post
I have a Haibike (Yamaha) which languishes mostly since it's not fun (for me) to ride.
Just curious as how the Haibike falls short on fun. I have a similar bike and love it. Is it the 20mph motor cutoff? Too heavy?
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Old 11-09-19, 09:10 AM
  #21  
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Originally Posted by fly135 View Post
Just curious as how the Haibike falls short on fun. I have a similar bike and love it. Is it the 20mph motor cutoff? Too heavy?
Mostly, the frame seems to be an MTB-look alike, that is a big, heavy chunk of aluminum that should be used off road, but really can't cut it (for me). Possibly it's partially that the BBS02 seems more powerful. Bottom line, I can ascend some gnarly (for me) trails on the BBS that I can't on the Haibike. There's nothing wrong with the Haibike and if I hadn't already been riding the BBS for a year or so before I got it (knew the then owners of Haibike and got a smoking deal), I'd probably like it a lot more.
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Old 11-10-19, 08:58 PM
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I am about two weeks ahead of you on a similar search.
This is a great forum, but the experienced guys forget we do not understand many acronyms they use. Try to read between the lines.

What I have learned so far is there is no perfect e bike for everybody, but there is a perfect one for YOU. You must decide what you want.

For simple riding around, I prefer sitting in an upright position, so a Cruiser style is my choice. Others like to go faster and enjoy sore backs from leaning over the handle bars.

Folding bikes are great if you use it for commuting or around campus and want to carry them into an office or apartment, or transport in a car trunk.

Fat tires - 4" wide - are great for trail riding, riding in sand, mud and snow. Thinner tires - about 2" - are fine on pavement and other solid surfaces. They are obviously thinner and are easier to pedal.

There are 3 basic motor positions. Front hub is easy to add to an existing bike, but "pulls" the bike instead of pushing, like pedals do. They are rarely found on a new bike.
Rear hub are similar, but the weight is behind you, not in front. It pushes the bike and feels more normal. They are found on most lower priced e bikes.
A mid motor actually powers the pedal crank. The weight is in the center and uses whatever gearing the bike has. This can give faster starts and higher top speed. It also applies extra wear to the crank and chain assemblies. Most higher end bikes are mid motor.

Within each motor location come geared and gearless hubs. In gearless motors, the hub turns at the speed of the motor. Geared hubs have internal planetary gears, so the motor may make 5 revolutions for each hub revolution. This is easier on the motor and likely will increase efficiency a bit. Also, geared motors will "free wheel". Think coasting down a hill or pedaling normally with no motor resistance. Many gearless motors do not free wheel, and will slow you down when coasting. When pedaling without power, you must also turn the motor. Some can take this drag and recharge the battery a little bit - regenerative motors.

Power assist comes in 2 basic forms. PAS or Pedal ASsist will kick in when turned on AND you pedal. Different controllers offer different numbers of assist levels, from 3 to 9, that I have seen. You stop pedaling, assist stops.
The second is throttle assist. There is either a ½ turn handle grip throttle or a thumb operated throttle. In this mode, no pedaling is required.
You may also use both at the same time on many bikes.
Some claim 3 modes. The third is pedal power with no assist.

One possible issue is batteries. Known name brands are fine, but some no name Chinese imports may not hold up well.

The power a battery can deliver is Volts X Ah, minus 20% A 36V 10Ah battery contains 360 Wh or watt hours. However, you can not use more than 80% - 90% of that power without doing permanent damage to the batteries.

The motor wattage - 250W, 350W, 500W, etc is a gross measure of the power output of the motor, or how quickly it will get you up to speed. For casual riders, especially light weight riders, 250W is probably enough. For die hard speed demons, 1000W may not be enough!

There are also legal limits to speed. Class 2 e bikes are limited to 20 mph, I think, and Class 3 limited to 25 mph. In the US, anything over 25 mph and it is no longer considered a bicycle, and it must be licensed and insured. Almost any e bike can go faster than this, but is limited by controller settings.

There are also significant differences in the display.

Prices depend on what options you want. Low end complete bikes start at about $600. Good quality, name brand e bikes start around $2000. Higher end models run $5000 and higher.
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Old 11-11-19, 04:24 AM
  #23  
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My ideal ebike is the Electra Townie Go 8i
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