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I Said I Would Never EVER Buy An E-Bike...but

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I Said I Would Never EVER Buy An E-Bike...but

Old 07-23-21, 06:17 AM
  #151  
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Originally Posted by Pop N Wood View Post
Not sure where you live but chance are they are legal on the road if they have turn signals, horn, insurance etc.
I'm in the UK. Yes you can technically register them as a motorbike, which is effectively what they are.

UK regulations:-

When is an e-bike not an e-bike?
E-bikes are classed  as regular non-assisted bicycles in Great Britain but if they supply electrical assistance when travelling at more than 25kph (15.5mph), have a motor which generates more than 250 Watts of power or motor assistance can be provided without the bike's pedals being in motion, they will be legally treated as a moped or motorcycle. These powered two-wheelers are subject to a different regulatory framework.

Because of our regulations, you only ever see e-bikes (the ones that are like bicycles and indeed classed by law as bicycles) in bike shops. There is no significant market in the UK for the high powered throttle operated e-bikes you are discussing.

FYI here are some common examples of e-bikes sold in bike shops that ride like bicycles and not like mopeds/motorbikes:-

Road e-bike
https://www.rutlandcycling.com/bikes...ke-red__473198

e-mtb
https://www.rutlandcycling.com/bikes...ke-red__481880

Hybrid e-bike
https://www.rutlandcycling.com/bikes...-black__483827

Cargo e-bike
https://www.rutlandcycling.com/bikes...-black__476017

Not everyone who rides an e-bike wants a huge motor and heavy battery. Quite the opposite for an e-road or e-mtb bike. It's more about keeping the weight and handling close to a normal bicycle while providing a modest power boost to augment your own human power.

This thread is a complete train wreck simply because some people are lumping all e-bikes into one single category, even though they can be completely different beasts with a completely different purpose.
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Old 07-23-21, 06:25 AM
  #152  
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Originally Posted by KPREN View Post
When you advocate limiting to 250 watts and 15 mph you are very much advocating eliminating that soccer mom hauling kids and groceries. As for not allowed on the roads? Every state here in the USA allow it. Where do you live where there are no e cargo bikes and e fat bikes allowed?
You mis-understand. I'm only advocating the 250W 15 mph limit for BICYCLES. See my post above. More powerful e-bikes are classed in the UK as motorbikes - which means you need a driving license and insurance to take them on the public roads. Do you not think that's sensible? Or do you think it's fine to allow someone to ride a seriously powerful e-bike without any license or insurance?

I'm all for e-bikes taking over from cars and trucks, but they need to be properly regulated - like motorbikes.
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Old 07-23-21, 06:44 AM
  #153  
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Originally Posted by KPREN View Post
...the EU standard will rise to 750 watts, then to 1,000 to 1,500 watts. The speed limit will rise to 40 kph and stay put. I also predict that the biggest sellers in EU will be front loading box cargo bikes. The SUV's of the biking world...
Since motorcycles are already legal, the only question is how big, powerful, and fast can a bike be and still use the bike lanes and bike paths. I'm not really too thrilled about the idea of a mom and 2 kids on a 500 pound cargo bike blowing by me at 25 miles per hour on the bike path. TBH I wouldn't be that thrilled to have your fatbike and trailer blow by at 20, which is legal pretty much everywhere in the US. That's what the debate is all about. Nobody cares how big and powerful a bike is if someone's riding it in traffic, and it's not that difficult to get a license plate.
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Old 07-23-21, 07:30 AM
  #154  
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Originally Posted by kingston View Post
Since motorcycles are already legal, the only question is how big, powerful, and fast can a bike be and still use the bike lanes and bike paths. I'm not really too thrilled about the idea of a mom and 2 kids on a 500 pound cargo bike blowing by me at 25 miles per hour on the bike path. TBH I wouldn't be that thrilled to have your fatbike and trailer blow by at 20, which is legal pretty much everywhere in the US. That's what the debate is all about. Nobody cares how big and powerful a bike is if someone's riding it in traffic, and it's not that difficult to get a license plate.
Exactly right. I quite rightly can't legally ride a motorbike down a bike path. 250W is plenty powerful enough for something legally classed as a BICYCLE i.e. totally unlicensed and legally allowed on bike paths.

I'm wondering at what power level the whole pedalling drivetrain becomes totally pointless? If my "bike" had a 750W+ motor, what would be the point in even pedalling it anyway? Might as well just have a couple of footrests and call it a motorbike. But at least the regulators here in the UK seem to realise the difference and legislate accordingly.
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Old 07-23-21, 07:43 AM
  #155  
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Originally Posted by PeteHski View Post
Exactly right. I quite rightly can't legally ride a motorbike down a bike path. 250W is plenty powerful enough for something legally classed as a BICYCLE i.e. totally unlicensed and legally allowed on bike paths.

I'm wondering at what power level the whole pedalling drivetrain becomes totally pointless? If my "bike" had a 750W+ motor, what would be the point in even pedalling it anyway? Might as well just have a couple of footrests and call it a motorbike. But at least the regulators here in the UK seem to realise the difference and legislate accordingly.
I see that a lot. we were cruising on our e tandem at 18.5 right at the point the motor cuts off and this guy on a rad was trying to pass us on throttle only. well the poor guy had to start peddling to pass us then he had to keep peddling to keep just in front of us. I got a kick out of us making him work like that. nothing I love more then passing people who use throttle only or slowly spin. especially uphill. gets my heart racing and lets me push myself.
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Old 07-23-21, 09:26 AM
  #156  
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Originally Posted by PeteHski View Post
Exactly right. I quite rightly can't legally ride a motorbike down a bike path. 250W is plenty powerful enough for something legally classed as a BICYCLE i.e. totally unlicensed and legally allowed on bike paths.

I'm wondering at what power level the whole pedalling drivetrain becomes totally pointless? If my "bike" had a 750W+ motor, what would be the point in even pedalling it anyway? Might as well just have a couple of footrests and call it a motorbike. But at least the regulators here in the UK seem to realise the difference and legislate accordingly.
For me, the 350 watt assist is just right, it MAKES me pedal as it's not enough power to make it up without pedaling at anything more than lets say a 4% hill...I rode a 500 watt bike and it totally felt like riding a motorized bike, whereas my 350 watt still feels like a bicycle...
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Old 07-23-21, 10:57 AM
  #157  
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Originally Posted by 350htrr View Post
For me, the 350 watt assist is just right, it MAKES me pedal as it's not enough power to make it up without pedaling at anything more than lets say a 4% hill...I rode a 500 watt bike and it totally felt like riding a motorized bike, whereas my 350 watt still feels like a bicycle...
I suppose it depends on the total weight of bike and rider and your own pedal power.

For example on a conventional 9 kg road bike, plus my own 80 kg, I can climb up 25% hills (very slowly!) under my own power, which would be around 300W for a sustained climbing effort. Very hard work, but achievable. A 4% hill would be easy to climb even at sub 200W. Would barely break a sweat at a steady pace. A 350W power assist would make me fly up a 4% hill, even if the bike weight was doubled. I've ridden my daughter's 250W e-mtb and it makes very light work of our local 11% climb on maximum assist level. Another way to look at it is that 250W is the sort of power a decent amateur racer can put out for a few hours. 350W is World Tour Pro average power over a few hours. So having that sort of power on tap should be enough for something you would legitimately call a "bicycle".
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Old 07-23-21, 11:21 AM
  #158  
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I don't understand the EU mind set. For that mater I don't understand the bike zealots here in the USA either.

I guess things are a bit different where I live. We have multipurpose paths that more than just pedestrians and Huffiy's can use. Here you can use a horse and buggy. Yeah you ride around manure piles on your bike. Most roadies stick to the roads. In the winter time you share with snowmobiles, skiers and the likes.
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Old 07-23-21, 11:33 AM
  #159  
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Originally Posted by KPREN View Post
I don't understand the EU mind set. For that mater I don't understand the bike zealots here in the USA either...
That's ok. Bike zealots don't understand the mindset of people who want to ride motorcycles on the bike path.
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Old 07-23-21, 11:53 AM
  #160  
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Originally Posted by KPREN View Post
I don't understand the EU mind set. For that mater I don't understand the bike zealots here in the USA either .
The EU mind set is to keep a bicycle a bicycle... With a "little" bit of assistance from an Electric motor to assist/allow more people to ride bicycles who, without that little bit of assistance can't ...

Edit; As for the "purists" , they certainly have a point with the N American laws allowing such big motors and throttles, and cadence sensor.... JMO

Last edited by 350htrr; 07-23-21 at 12:19 PM. Reason: add some extra thoughts
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Old 07-23-21, 01:07 PM
  #161  
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Originally Posted by kingston View Post
It's a lot more complicated than you imply since every state and lots of cities have their own laws, which are different from the federal law, so it would be impossible for anyone to know them all. From the little research I have done, it seems like the maximum legal limit is pretty consistently 1hp (750w) and 20 mph.
Well the idea the federal law overrides state law makes make it pretty simple. At least to my simple mind.

But the really important point to note is the federal law does not say electric assist needs to cut out over 20 mph. Most people miss that.

If you want to talk enforcement, than that is a whole nother argument. Whether the bike is 700 or 1400 watts doesn't seem like something anyone would need to worry about. It is not like cops are going to bring mobile dynos to measure output.
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Old 07-23-21, 01:07 PM
  #162  
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Originally Posted by KPREN View Post
I don't understand the EU mind set. For that mater I don't understand the bike zealots here in the USA either.

I guess things are a bit different where I live. We have multipurpose paths that more than just pedestrians and Huffiy's can use. Here you can use a horse and buggy. Yeah you ride around manure piles on your bike. Most roadies stick to the roads. In the winter time you share with snowmobiles, skiers and the likes.
We have multi-purpose paths too, but motor-vehicles are banned from them. We have roads for those. Roadies also tend to stick to the road. Thatís why they are called Roadies. We also have dedicated bike paths too in some towns. Again motor-vehicles are banned.

Itís a pretty sensible mindset on the whole. E-bikes needed a very specific definition to be classed as ďbicyclesĒ and therefore allowed on bike paths etc and used on the road without a driving license and insurance.

We have horses too.
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Old 07-23-21, 01:10 PM
  #163  
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Originally Posted by Pop N Wood View Post
Well the idea the federal law overrides state law makes make it pretty simple. At least to my simple mind.

But the really important point to note is the federal law does not say electric assist needs to cut out over 20 mph. Most people miss that.

If you want to talk enforcement, than that is a whole nother argument. Whether the bike is 700 or 1400 watts doesn't seem like something anyone would need to worry about. It is not like cops are going to bring mobile dynos to measure output.
Yeah enforcement at the user end is impractical. But the laws do greatly affect what bike shops can actually retail. What you end up with here are aftermarket controller hacks to remove speed limiters etc.
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Old 07-23-21, 01:10 PM
  #164  
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Originally Posted by Pop N Wood View Post
Well the idea the federal law overrides state law makes make it pretty simple. At least to my simple mind...
It would be simple if it were true, but states and cities are allowed to make their own laws.
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Old 07-23-21, 01:21 PM
  #165  
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Originally Posted by PeteHski View Post
Not everyone who rides an e-bike wants a huge motor and heavy battery.
If you compare the weight of the 250 watt motors on the bikes you listed to a 1200 watt Bafang BBS02 you will see there is no weight advantage to the smaller rated motors. The Bafang might even have an overall weight advantage because it doesn't need the larger frame mount. Even the larger BBSHD is only a bit heavier than the EU spec Bosch and Brose motors.

Battery weight depends on capacity. Batteries get light when they have reduced capacity. Less capacity means less assist and less range.

Nothing to stop someone with a 1500 watt motor from using a smaller battery. Similarly there is nothing to stop them from running the motors at the same power limits as the EU stuff. The only thing you can't do is get more watts out of the less capable system.
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Old 07-23-21, 01:26 PM
  #166  
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Originally Posted by kingston View Post
It would be simple if it were true, but states and cities are allowed to make their own laws.
Well there is no question the federal law states pretty clearly it supersedes state law. What that means in practice I simply don't know.

I do know not every state has much in the way of ebike laws, thus the federal one is all there is.
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Old 07-23-21, 01:29 PM
  #167  
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Originally Posted by PeteHski View Post
Yeah enforcement at the user end is impractical. But the laws do greatly affect what bike shops can actually retail. What you end up with here are aftermarket controller hacks to remove speed limiters etc.
Or you buy a quality Bafang kit with user configurable controller.

But looks like some of Bafang's newer models are taking a cue from the Europeans and making their stuff more proprietary. Why anyone thinks that is a good thing for the consumer is beyond me.
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Old 07-23-21, 02:41 PM
  #168  
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Originally Posted by Pop N Wood View Post
If you compare the weight of the 250 watt motors on the bikes you listed to a 1200 watt Bafang BBS02 you will see there is no weight advantage to the smaller rated motors. The Bafang might even have an overall weight advantage because it doesn't need the larger frame mount. Even the larger BBSHD is only a bit heavier than the EU spec Bosch and Brose motors.

Battery weight depends on capacity. Batteries get light when they have reduced capacity. Less capacity means less assist and less range.

Nothing to stop someone with a 1500 watt motor from using a smaller battery. Similarly there is nothing to stop them from running the motors at the same power limits as the EU stuff. The only thing you can't do is get more watts out of the less capable system.
I have enough experience of batteries to know that a 1500W motor needs a much heavier battery than a 250W motor to make it practical. Not just for range, a small battery would also struggle to supply enough load for the higher power output.

The battery on our lightest 175W e-bike weighs just 900g and still gives a decent range. The whole bike is 11 kg and thatís with a suspension fork.

Our 250W bike is a lot heavier than the above bike. I think itís about 22 kg from memory.

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Old 07-23-21, 02:42 PM
  #169  
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Originally Posted by Pop N Wood View Post
Or you buy a quality Bafang kit with user configurable controller.

But looks like some of Bafang's newer models are taking a cue from the Europeans and making their stuff more proprietary. Why anyone thinks that is a good thing for the consumer is beyond me.
Or you simply ride it like a bicycle as intended.

Bafang appear to have e-motor systems suitable for all uses from pure e-road bikes with super-light 200W output through to e-cargo motors with 1000W. The latter obviously are not classed as bicycles with that kind of power.

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Old 07-23-21, 03:05 PM
  #170  
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Originally Posted by kingston View Post
That's ok. Bike zealots don't understand the mindset of people who want to ride motorcycles on the bike path.
By your own definition. I am going to continue riding my legal severely limited horsepower electric motorcycle on your bike path. At the speeds I ride at it is a hell of a lot safer than narrow roads without shoulders and big deep ditches.

The next paragraph is not aimed at you personally. Its just time to say it.

Everyone is certainly back and forth on this one. Of course none of us wants to mention the elephant in the room. That "elephant" is that biking is competitive whether there is a competition or not. Somehow it demeans someone whom has worked their asses off getting into tip top shape only to be passed by a slob on an e bike. That is the real issue and we all know it. We can rationalize all we want about there being a real problem with e bikes when there is no real problem and justify idiotic restrictions to prevent slobs from passing us. No one wants to say "That is not fair" because we all know instinctively that when we hear those words, we are listening to a loser or worse yet. An overzealous self appointed proxy for a loser. I can read between the lines. There, I said it cuz no one else will.

I will admit to feeling a little slighted once in a while but certainly not enough to whine and profess on a public forum that we need stricter definitions to put e bikes into a classification that justifies exclusion in order to prevent slobs from passing us on e bikes. The slob has a right to pass me if I am going slow..
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Old 07-23-21, 03:19 PM
  #171  
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Originally Posted by KPREN View Post
By your own definition. I am going to continue riding my legal severely limited horsepower electric motorcycle on your bike path. At the speeds I ride at it is a hell of a lot safer than narrow roads without shoulders and big deep ditches.

The next paragraph is not aimed at you personally. Its just time to say it.

Everyone is certainly back and forth on this one. Of course none of us wants to mention the elephant in the room. That "elephant" is that biking is competitive whether there is a competition or not. Somehow it demeans someone whom has worked their asses off getting into tip top shape only to be passed by a slob on an e bike. That is the real issue and we all know it. We can rationalize all we want about there being a real problem with e bikes when there is no real problem and justify idiotic restrictions to prevent slobs from passing us. No one wants to say "That is not fair" because we all know instinctively that when we hear those words, we are listening to a loser or worse yet. An overzealous self appointed proxy for a loser. I can read between the lines. There, I said it cuz no one else will.

I will admit to feeling a little slighted once in a while but certainly not enough to whine and profess on a public forum that we need stricter definitions to put e bikes into a classification that justifies exclusion in order to prevent slobs from passing us on e bikes. The slob has a right to pass me if I am going slow..
So just to be clear, do you actually think itís okay to have unlicensed, uninsured 1000W+ e-bikes on bike paths?

You really think the restrictions in power and operation are there to protect cyclist egos? Seriously?
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Old 07-23-21, 03:55 PM
  #172  
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As a representative of the fit-over-fifty group, my opinion about e-bikes on bike paths has nothing to do with ego. A big adventure motorcycle makes over 100hp and goes over 100 mph. Should we let people ride those on the bike path? There has to be a limit. We just disagree on what that limit should be. My personal opinion is no motors on the bike path at all. If you want to ride a motorcycle we have roads for that. If you want to ride off-road motorcycles, we have trails for that too. I couldn't care less about ebikes or motorcycles on the road. I feel the same way getting passed by an ebike as I do a Hayabusa.
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Old 07-23-21, 04:02 PM
  #173  
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Originally Posted by PeteHski View Post
So just to be clear, do you actually think itís okay to have unlicensed, uninsured 1000W+ e-bikes on bike paths?

You really think the restrictions in power and operation are there to protect cyclist egos? Seriously?
I share the freeway with cars that will do 200mph and don't have an issue. I have ridden thousands of miles on bike paths and have not encountered idiots going balls out with an e bike.

I was passed by lots of bicycles today on the bike path. My average speed was about 12-13mph in a 20 mile group ride. At the highest setting my bike is theoretically capable of 1000w. My average battery draw watts were probably around 50-60 today. Yesterday I did 75 miles on bike paths on two separate rides. My average on the first ride was probably 12-13mph and the second ride was probably 14-15mph and included some roads. My total average battery output was about 100 watts. Probably about 65 watts motor output.

The point is that although when light my bike will go 28mph and might put out about 1000 watts for a very short period of time, if and only if, I am flat out in the top power setting does not mean I will likely ride my bike at that speed. I am sure that. 28mph on a bike path would feel pretty dangerous. I am more likely to hit the higher power limit climbing a 25% grade at 5 mph when fully loaded. To get 1,000 watts motor output I would need to pedal the bike at 120+rpm so I am not putting much in by the time I need full power. . I have certainly pulled 1,700 watts peak from the battery but probably never reached 1,000 watts motor output.

On average I ride safer on an e bike than I do on a regular bike. I do not get as tired therefore my attention and reaction time is better. So is my balance. I gladly slow way down to pass pedestrians, dogs, kids and any body else because there is really no penalty for getting back up to speed. Same for stop signs. When I am tired, I am reluctant to slow down much or stop at stop signs with the problem of restarting. . If I drive home from biking after a ride then I am safer on the road after e biking as well because I am not tired.

I don't think I am atypical at all. I just don't see the problems you portray to exist any more than I see people doing 120mph+ on the freeway in a car. I personally think e biking is safer. Especially for an old Cogger. .
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Old 07-23-21, 04:16 PM
  #174  
kingston 
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Sounds like you are super courteous on the trail KPREN , and you're probably right that most ebikers ride like you do. Not all unfortunately. Like with most things, a few outliers spoil it for everyone.
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Old 07-23-21, 04:41 PM
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Originally Posted by kingston View Post
Sounds like you are super courteous on the trail KPREN , and you're probably right that most ebikers ride like you do. Not all unfortunately. Like with most things, a few outliers spoil it for everyone.
those people are with us in every endeavor, not just biking At the moment, the idiots on regular bikes still outnumber the idiots on e bikes. You can legislate courteous law abiders out of existence but you are powerless to legislate against stupidity.
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