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Hilltopper front motor kit

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Hilltopper front motor kit

Old 03-01-21, 07:57 PM
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Hilltopper front motor kit

Hi All

has anyone used the Hilltopper 250w kit?
for $550 it has new front rim and tire, manual switch ....so no pedal assist .... “water bottle cage battery pack.
I am putting it on a lightweight 700c wheel, 3x8 Acera, rim brakes..... I can do hills on my own .... but do to the lightweight kit and lightweight bike.... thought it would be some help and extend my rides.

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Old 03-01-21, 09:36 PM
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They are still making that stuff. Damn...I wouldn't put on on a bike. We gave them up rather quickly at least for us the support was crap and the quality was not a lot better. Now we have reliable mid-drive bikes so I would rather have one of those.
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Old 03-01-21, 10:42 PM
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Check the archives. There were some a couple of years ago (maybe more). Don't know whether they're the same as then, but they had an on/off switch which bothered some individuals. Look at Leeds too.
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Old 03-02-21, 05:37 AM
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I have a similar system, Swytch, but it is uses PAS, though you can add a throttle. Same as you wanted something light and a very minimal assist. Doing a good job on a loaded tandem and can't wait to try it on my wife's single rider cannondale. I think any 250w front hub system will give you what you need...light and a touch of assist.

If you are looking for more assistance then mid drive and other setups are probably best.
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Old 03-02-21, 06:43 AM
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I have the 250w front hub kit. Bought it years ago when most ebikes were converted bikes with kits. It had a front hub wheel, a simple one button open/close throttle, and two 20 mile batteries. Converted a $5 thrift store find - a 20 year old Giant hybrid - and rode that ebike for years. Pleasure, group rides, charity rides. That converted ebike did it all. Loved it. Probably put more miles on it then it had ever seen before.

Then 2 years ago I went mainstream and purchased two "real" mid-motor ebikes, and the Hilltopper was retired. One of the 20 mile batteries died, and so the bike is only used for pulling a baby trailer on the rare times it goes out.

Big plus- the small hub motor is very stealth and there is no bulky motor housing at the pedals. Simple unobtrusive wiring easy to install. The old-fashioned bike still looks like an old fashioned bike. The on/off thumb throttle is handy for giving a boost when needed, but without PAS you are on your own for propulsion. Good way to put new life in an old bike with a basic plug-and-play ebike kit.

Downside - no PAS, no battery readouts (it is a "your best guess" estimate of how much has been used), and my first critical use of customer support was mediocre. When I called them about the deceased battery they offered me nothing in the way of them being able to fix it, or who might be able to fix it. All they tried to do was sell me a new upgraded kit. I was pretty miffed, and after the fourth attempt during the conversation to sell me a whole new kit, I said goodbye and hung up. Also had the hub motor get hot (only once) during a 25 mile ride from too many hills. The 250w is ok for flat cruising but can be somewhat anemic when it comes to long hills.

My consensus - its a very easy to install plug-and-play kit for a hybrid bike for the price if you don't want to give up your regular bike but can use a boost from time to time. I used it for many rides up to 40 miles and it did the job of helping me when I needed it.

I just noticed Clean Republic is now offering a new 20 mile battery (at far less than what I originally paid years ago for my 20 mile batteries) to power both of their 250w and 350w hubs. Would be worth buying as a range extender.

Hope this helps!

Last edited by momsonherbike; 03-02-21 at 06:59 AM.
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Old 03-02-21, 09:09 AM
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Excellent advice from everyone..... as I said I can do the hills with my lightweight bike..... but this would be a boost. I will keep searching..... I did own a dedicated Ebike but sold it ....69 lbs and parts were no name or bottom of the line.
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Old 03-04-21, 11:55 AM
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Check out the offerings from Grin Technologies, Leeds, Dillinger. Trust me, you want to get a PAS system. When I got my set up I almost passed on the PAS as I had previously had a throttle only system. Even basic PAS is better than holding a throttle button. You'll ride longer and enjoy it more if you don't have to push a button or move a lever the entire time.
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Old 03-04-21, 02:45 PM
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I believe Hilltopper retired their low end kit and redid it with a throttle instead of a push-button. They also have a second kit with a pedal assist sensor. On that kit, the controller is built into the battery which make the install quite easy. If you know how to bolt the battery to your frame, you're done.

The drawback with that is it will be more difficult to source a replacement battery if you don't want to go back to Hilltopper, but it's still a generic battery, available on the third party market. The Hilltopper price might be a little higher than one would pay going around and buying a motor/controller/battery separately but they will have picked a battery that is less likely to (1) fail or (2) burn down your house.

I think I could replicate it on amazon for under $699 without burning down my house. I can also buy a cheap ebike for that kind of money too,

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Old 03-07-21, 09:48 AM
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My wife has the Leeds on her cruiser and loves the set-up, with pedaling she can get up to 15-20 miles and just uses it to get up grades when she needs it. The pressure button throttle is really light and easy, very simple to install.
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Old 03-07-21, 10:17 AM
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Make sure you have a solid front fork.... made of steel and not alloy. No alloy drop-out either. It'll rip your fork apart.
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Old 03-07-21, 10:37 AM
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Originally Posted by trailangel View Post
Make sure you have a solid front fork.... made of steel and not alloy. No alloy drop-out either. It'll rip your fork apart.
I installed a pair of Grin TorqArms on the [beefy!] alloy fork of my dual 500W hub drive cargo bike, no problems.

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Old 03-11-21, 01:09 PM
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I've read through many conversion kit guides and eventually decided for myself that Bafang is the best one.
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