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Road bike rider considering e-bike, what's your experience

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Road bike rider considering e-bike, what's your experience

Old 08-30-20, 08:04 AM
  #26  
Pop N Wood
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Originally Posted by kingston View Post
I guess that depends on the ebike. The one I rented was limited to about 25 miles and was so heavy I wouldn't have wanted to ride it another mile without power.
Range is a little hard to figure with ebikes. Obviously don't use the boost and the battery will never run out. Infinite range? Bomb around town at 38 mph and the battery needs charging after a couple of hours.

Granted the bike is heavier, but like some one said spin lower gears and look for flatter hills. Riding an unpowered ebike is really no different than riding a loaded touring bike. Just a different kind of experience compared to a road bike.

I would loan you my conversion for a day. I guarantee your average speed won't be less and you will go farther. Get the right motor and battery on the right bike and they can really go. The bike is actually quite pleasant to ride unpowered. Until it hits a hill at which point one does feel the weight.
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Old 08-30-20, 09:16 AM
  #27  
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I watched this
mentioned a few times in this thread. Actual range was a little over 100k with the extra battery. At the end he said his speed was about the same as on an unassisted bike, but it was a lot easier. If I'm looking for less effort on a 3 hour bike ride, there are a lot less expensive ways of doing that than buying a $14,000 ebike. Not to many hills you can't get up with <100 watts and low enough gears. For commuting and transportation, I get how ebikes could be useful. Not too different from a moped really.
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Old 08-30-20, 09:23 AM
  #28  
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It's been written about many times before on here. People use ebikes for many different reasons. Physical assist due to injury/age, difficult terrain, commuting and not wanting to arrive gross, pulling heavy cargo, keeping up with faster family/friends, and just for plain fun. It's not a one size fits all situation and there isn't a one size fits all bike. Each of those scenarios lends themselves to a particular type of e-bike. I use mine instead of a car (sold it when I electrified my bike). To get back to the OP - it is just a matter of finding which of the various options out there best suits your needs/wants/budget.
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Old 08-30-20, 11:20 AM
  #29  
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Originally Posted by kingston View Post
I watched this video on the Creo SL mentioned a few times in this thread. Actual range was a little over 100k with the extra battery. At the end he said his speed was about the same as on an unassisted bike, but it was a lot easier. If I'm looking for less effort on a 3 hour bike ride, there are a lot less expensive ways of doing that than buying a $14,000 ebike. Not to many hills you can't get up with <100 watts and low enough gears. For commuting and transportation, I get how ebikes could be useful. Not too different from a moped really.
A lot different; you don't need a license or insurance. But, as with many things, some people love them and some don't. For me, a fun change of pace off road and much quicker for errands on road. For a friend's friend, who had a severe surfing accident, was a quadriplegic for a while and can walk only a few steps but can eMTB, life-changing. Not the only one like that either. There's a former Red Bull competitor with a similar history.
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Old 08-30-20, 11:25 AM
  #30  
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Originally Posted by linberl View Post
It's been written about many times before on here. People use ebikes for many different reasons. Physical assist due to injury/age, difficult terrain, commuting and not wanting to arrive gross, pulling heavy cargo, keeping up with faster family/friends, and just for plain fun. It's not a one size fits all situation and there isn't a one size fits all bike. Each of those scenarios lends themselves to a particular type of e-bike. I use mine instead of a car (sold it when I electrified my bike). To get back to the OP - it is just a matter of finding which of the various options out there best suits your needs/wants/budget.
Excellent response and that's the secret. Identify your wants (needs) and resources and you'll find a solution. As said, for some, no e-bike now (maybe ever); for others there are a myriad of possibilities.
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Old 08-31-20, 08:05 AM
  #31  
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I love mine. 71 years old and ride 16 - 25 miles almost daily. I bought a low priced TREK that was heavy (still is) and rode like a dump truck. I put narrower, high pressure tires, suspension seat post and Jones Loop Bars on it - huge improvement. Area where I ride has many short, steep hills and several stretches of open fields where the wind blows. I use the e-boost for topping hills and against the wind when being chased by dogs. I occasionally take off on side roads for longer rides - I used to worry about being able to get back home after going too far. According to my Apple watch - on my regular trips, the calorie count is about the same - I am just not so "whupped" when I finish.
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Old 08-31-20, 11:27 AM
  #32  
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I never worry about calorie-count on any outing, either MTB, eMTB or hiking; my standard is fun-count.
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Old 08-31-20, 12:03 PM
  #33  
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Originally Posted by Bob S View Post
As serious "roadie" it sounds like you know where I am coming from, Your input is very helpful. Fortunately my health issues are behind me and I have read that adding an e-bike will allow me to ride more often, switching between my road bike and e-bike, and take on some longer rides and more vertical. I am still in the thinking about it stage and hoping to hear from other roadies.
I built a road ebike about 7 years ago. I ride it about 10% of the time (mostly for commuting actually). I designed it to be light and fast - about 25% faster than I would be putzing around on my own (actually I ride it about the same speed I ride in a pace line in our fast club rides - but now I can do those speeds solo, lol).

I built it as a fairly low power system, because lets face it - if we are in good shape, 250watts is pretty good for us. Any powered system much over 250 watts is going to start to turn into a electric moped. I don't want the motor to overwhelm my legs.
  • Weight is an issue. I started with a 19lb bike (specialized) and added a 5lb motor (rear hub) and 3lb battery. That is extremely light for an ebike, but a road bike over 30lbs isn't going to feel like a road bike IMHO. That is why I would lean to a light weight light powered fazua drivetrain if I was buying off the shelf.
  • Range is an issue. My standard battery lasts about an hour (although I have range extender batteries). So 100 mile days are out of the question.
  • Tires - My donor bike came with 23mm tires. I've modified it to take gravel tires, but realistically, it needs 35-40mm tires. You are going to hit rough patches at a higher speed and with a heavier bike - 35mm+ are going to make life a lot nicer. Anything under 30mm around here is just asking for problems on an ebike. Tubeless is great.
Hope that helps!

(the duration comment above was kinda funny - I have unlimited range without an ebike, but with a powered ebike at a minimum of 200 watts, I certainly have a limit).
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Old 09-01-20, 11:32 AM
  #34  
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Originally Posted by Bob S View Post
I am still in the thinking about it stage and hoping to hear from other roadies.
A historical roadie here, about 95%/5% these past few years. Just turned 69 years young.

I've related my e-bike experiences here before, so won't regurgitate those thoughts. My Pinarello Dyodo weighs in at about 27.5 pounds, sans saddle bag and a full water bottle. With the optional extended battery, I can get in a metric century, (and not much more), using various assist modes during the ride. Became relatively affordable due to the covid price drop and national stock oversupply. I'm enjoying it greatly and even took a short ride the other evening without any assist. Just to get a few miles in.

I've heard good things about the Orbea Gain. Same motor system as the Dyodo. Worth checking those too.

Would I purchase a Dyodo if given a life do-over? Yeah, pretty sure I would. Not at the full price, but the discounted price was attractive. Haven't used my analog bikes since getting the Dyodo.
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Old 09-01-20, 04:14 PM
  #35  
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I work at Crazy Lenny's E-Bikes. We sell many bikes to people with different wants and needs. The feed back is always the same though... E-Bikes make your riding fun again! Your able to make it up any hill easier which extends your range! They allow you to go for a more leisurely ride on the days you normally don't bike but it's soooo niiiice out that you just have to go for a ride! They help the less active keep up with their active friend! I love my job at Crazy Lenny's because I get to help all these people and put smiles on their faces! One aspect people always question is the workout or lack of workout you get with an e-bike. E-Bikes are able to provide you with a much better workout! In level one assist it makes the bike feel like a light road bike, level two helps you up hills just enough but you are still working to get up that hill! Levels 3-5 are for those out to ride just for fun or get somewhere quick. I see many people who are injured use their e-bike to train with until they get enough muscle back to switch back to a regular bike. There's countless situations that many people have greatly benefited from getting an e-bike. I guess my point is, DON'T WAIT! Your only delaying the fun your going to have! Sounds like an advertisement... It's all true though.
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Old 09-01-20, 05:01 PM
  #36  
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I got a used mountain type 36v ebike with a 350w rear hub motor. It had about 800 miles on it and the battery went south just after I got it. So I got a new battery on ebay and here's my thoughts. If you're doing that many miles you're in great shape and an ebike is going to be a revelation. Do hammers work? Yes, they do. At 70, will you feel it after lifting a hammer all day, yes you will. Will a compressed air nailer allow you to work and not feel wasted? Yes, it will. Ebikes are like that. If I get on my ebike and ride, say, 20 miles to my LBS and he's got some kind of problem that day, no problem, I just ride 10 more miles to the other bike shop where he's always in a good mood. With my regular bike, I might not go the 10 extra miles. I never ride using the throttle and keep the bike in PAS 2 or 3. With my 10Ah battery I get 25/30 miles and I haven't really tested to see how much further it'll take me. One thing I discovered just the other day, since I never use the throttle, is to use the throttle when taking off from a stop, if I forget to shift into a lower gear. How wonderful, especially towards the end of a ride. Do mid-drive motors have throttles? For me, now that I caught on about taking off from a stop with throttle, I'm not buying a bike that doesn't have a throttle. Another poster said something about going 38 mph. 20 mph on a bike is fast, don't even want to think about the amount of concentration you need to ride around at 38 mph. Especially with a road bike with really thin tires and hunched over so you have even less time to react to something in your way. If you're riding at 38 mph on an ebike, maybe you should wear a helmet and pay off your life insurance. Oh, and the conversation always goes to $12k bikes. For me, it's more of a hobby thing and working on a $12k ebike or regular bike is not something I would do. Having to take an expensive bike to the Lamborghini dealer down the road to get it fixed or adjusted or whatever is just not something I would look forward to. Especially since the Lamborghini (LBS) dealer is usually very attentive when you come in to buy the $12K or $20K bike, but very soon, they'll lose interest and go back to being in a bad mood because of direct sellers on the internet, pressure from the mfrs and that PIA that bought that $12K bike six months ago already, and why am I still having to fiddle with the seat and the handlebar. It never ends. So, I've been rambling, don't agonize it. A modestly priced ebike with a throttle with modestly sized tires for the street or light off roading (suspensions are nice) with as BIG a battery as you can. 17 - 20 Ah would be nice. Go for your ride at 15 - 18 mph, enjoy the ride, the scenery and the fact that we're still on the right side of the dirt.
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Old 09-02-20, 12:56 PM
  #37  
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Originally Posted by yippee View Post
... with as BIG a battery as you can. 17 - 20 Ah would be nice. Go for your ride at 15 - 18 mph, enjoy the ride, the scenery and the fact that we're still on the right side of the dirt.
I'm thinking if you have never run out your 10ah battery, you probably don't need a 20ah battery. Batteries are big, heavy, and very expensive.

That said, ebike.ca has come up with some modular batteries that look pretty cool. I came so close to being part of their pilot with their prototypes, but backed out when the price went up.

So, I have been experimenting with using my 40v snowblower batteries as range extenders. I took them apart and found they were basically the same as what I use as my main battery, just in a smaller form factor (I actually asked "luna cycles" if they would build me one about a year before luna cycles opened for business - but now I can buy one at Lowes, lol).

So, now I have a 10ah, +6ah, +6ah battery for those days when I'm in the mood to do a really long ride (like last sunday). For just commuting to work, I don't have to lug a big battery around.
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Old 09-02-20, 01:04 PM
  #38  
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Originally Posted by Bob S View Post
As serious "roadie" it sounds like you know where I am coming from, Your input is very helpful. Fortunately my health issues are behind me and I have read that adding an e-bike will allow me to ride more often, switching between my road bike and e-bike, and take on some longer rides and more vertical. I am still in the thinking about it stage and hoping to hear from other roadies.
I'm primarily a road rider, but purchased a Luna mid-drive kit for a commuter. In your case, I would recommend a pre-built eBike with a proper torque sensing motor. The DIY kits are affordable but without a torque sensor they don't provide quite the same natural ride feel. Something like the Giant E+ 1 Pro is basically a road bike with integrated mid-drive.
The DIY kits are great for commuters, but something with a built in Bosch/Yamaha/Shimano motor and torque sensor will probably feel much more natural.
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Old 09-04-20, 01:22 PM
  #39  
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Originally Posted by Bob S View Post
I am in my mid 70s riding 2 times a week for 60 – 80 miles a with some hills including 1k or more of climbing. Slowing down and thinking it might be fun and extend my riding if I add an e-bike. Have you done this? What is your experience and recommendations?
I built an E-Trike.....but still love to ride my road-bike. I am still riding 100/miles a week on road bike. The E-Trike does indeed extend my range and allows me to better enjoy the ride on more scenic routes. When we go out (I build my wife same E-Trike) it is usually a day-long ride of about 30 miles or so, taking breaks not because we need rest, but instead to enjoy various scenes on our trip.
For me the E-Trike has been very nice to have.
PS: I live in a community with hundreds of golf-carts. I use it as transportation as well for running errands and getting around inside town/community on the golf trails and bike routes.

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Old 09-04-20, 06:14 PM
  #40  
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I have experience with heavy ebikes (Sondors, which were stolen) and really wanted something lighter. I now have a Downtube Nova (I wish I still had my 8H because I much prefer an IGH, but that bike got stolen). I was persuaded by linberl's excellent comments on it to order a OneMotor with extended battery (and I wish it was even more that 300 Wh, but it is what it is).

I ordered on August 13 and received an email from Grace on Sept. 2 apologizing for the delay. She said they moved the company from NYC to NJ in August and were mostly setteled in when I ordered. They had to wait for the availability of a technician to reinstall and set up their 3D printer which took several days. She thouight they might be able to ship it today. I don't have a tracking number yet. I hope they can ship it on Tuesday.
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Old 09-08-20, 10:03 AM
  #41  
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If you can, go for it! but keep your road bike for those days when you want to suffer a little more. You will have a new experience with an eBike, all the fun with less effort, you can go further, faster even when you feel tired. I'm 39 years old, and I use my Turbo Vado to commute when I want an easier and faster ride, it always put a smile on my face.
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Old 09-11-20, 09:29 AM
  #42  
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Originally Posted by Bob S View Post
I am in my mid 70s riding 2 times a week for 60 80 miles a with some hills including 1k or more of climbing. Slowing down and thinking it might be fun and extend my riding if I add an e-bike. Have you done this? What is your experience and recommendations?
I think you if you are already an experienced rider, you will not want an eBike that will do too much of the work for you. Something like Orbea Gain or Pinarello Dyodo look close to regular road bikes but have a small battery and motor. They get great range and can give a nice boost. I ultimately sold my Orbea as I prefer the simplicity of a regular bike. I am 38 so I just need to get into better shape.

I also turned a steel frame miyata into a mid-drive ebike. I have some kinks to work out but it has been pretty fun so far. I have some videos on my youtube channel showing me building and test riding the miyata and also some videos test riding the orbea. I'll put a couple links.

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Old 09-18-20, 04:16 PM
  #43  
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I have a Magnum Metro and love it. It has a 500W rear hub drive. I could probably easily get 60 miles on a single charge. Paid $1700 new at Crazy Lenny's in Winter Garden.

https://electricbikereview.com/magnum/metro-step-thru/
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Old 09-24-20, 04:08 PM
  #44  
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Originally Posted by Bob S View Post
I am in my mid 70s riding 2 times a week for 60 – 80 miles a with some hills including 1k or more of climbing. Slowing down and thinking it might be fun and extend my riding if I add an e-bike. Have you done this? What is your experience and recommendations?
I rode a Specialized Creo SL Comp Carbon yesterday. My legs were sore all day as I was riding after 2 days off rather than my usual 3 days off. I warmed up for a short time with out any electric assist then put it in Econ mode - 1 st gear for the first hour. I usually reach the top to the highest hill on this route in 50 minutes, it took me 45 minutes. I continued in econ mode for the 1st half of the ride then shifted to 2nd, there are 3 power options. The last half of the ride has 600' of climbing and yesterday most of it had an 8 mph head wind. My ride was just over 34 miles in 1.51 or 18.4 mph while on my road bike I average 15.8 - 16.0 mph. I thoroughly enjoyed the bike although the carbon frame transmits a lot more of vibration on rough surfaces than my road bike, perhaps less air in the tires and a different seat post would change that.
If I had been riding my road bike I would have turned around early on due to my sore legs. I will ride my road bike a couple of times before making a decision on the Creo SL although at this point I am leaning toward placing an order.

Good workout as I had same average and maximum heart rates as I have on my road bike.

Last edited by Bob S; 09-25-20 at 04:50 PM. Reason: Adding info
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Old 09-25-20, 09:34 AM
  #45  
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Originally Posted by Bob S View Post
If I had been riding my road bike I would have turned around early on due to my sore legs. I will ride my road bike a couple of times before making a decision on the Creo SL although at this point I am leaning toward placing an order.
That was me this morning. The odd thing is I have become addicting to out of the saddle max power sprinting up hills with the motor pushing too...
(I'm on a simple $300 hub motor/battery).
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Old 09-26-20, 05:25 AM
  #46  
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If you want to enjoy bicycling more get an ebike. You've probably put on a lot of mileage. Getting a kit for your bike is ok, not sure if the spokes can handle the additional weight and speed. Yes, ebikes are heavier, Level 1 assist turns your ebike to a regular bike. Do you cycle hills or mostly flat? If you're a hill climber get a mid drive bike. If you cycle mostly flats get a hub drive. Batteries get better every two years, you mostly have about 50 mile range. They're a few bikes that sell second batteries to extend your range. You know what and where you ride, it does extend your range and speed of riding. Riding and ebike is like Pee Wee Herman's Big Adventure if you need a visual. Hell most countries that bicycle everyday ride ebikes. Ebikes in the US are starting to take off. Go test ride one, you can rent higher end ones for a day and take it for a spin. Once you ride you will probably buy. Expand your training repetoire with an ebike. The pros even train with ebikes. Good luck!
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Old 09-26-20, 06:15 AM
  #47  
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Just like you wouldn't leave your laptop or phone in the car in the garage (summer or winter), you need an e-bike that you can either remove the battery to bring inside, or light enough to carry the whole bike into the house. Or, with the onemotor, remove the whole shebang.
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Old 10-09-20, 12:20 PM
  #48  
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Talking Love my e Bike!

I took the "stimulus money" and ordered two E Bikes! Rad City, the wife's Step through and my high step. Love them both. Fast, efficient and comfortable!
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Old 10-09-20, 02:16 PM
  #49  
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I like mine. If you buy a built one its gonna work the way someone else wants it to. If you build your own it will work the way you want it to but will require more trial and error.

I purchased one and have built three. I think building it is the way to go.
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Old 10-09-20, 08:56 PM
  #50  
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Originally Posted by Bob S View Post
I am in my mid 70s riding 2 times a week for 60 80 miles a with some hills including 1k or more of climbing. Slowing down and thinking it might be fun and extend my riding if I add an e-bike. Have you done this? What is your experience and recommendations?
I got a Gazelle Ultimate T10 step-through in June. I sold a Trex road bike and a Cannondale hybrid. The Gazelle is very heavy, but it rides and handles well. I live n New Jersey, which isnt hilly, so I typically ride in the lowest assist level. Its a fun bike to ride, I can go many more miles than I could before and the step-through makes mounting and dismounting a breeze.
Do your research. Go test ride a few. And get your e-bike. You will ride longer, and with fewer after effects.
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