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Electric powered bike.

Discussion in 'off topic' started by George J, Aug 28, 2019.

  1. George J

    George J Herefordshire member

    A friend of mine has just assembled an electric bike. Nothing posh but using components rather than buying a ready made model, somewhat less expensive.

    My goodness, I am going to get an electric bike now. The saving [from not keeping a car] would be roughly £500 PA for Tax, Insurance, and MOT, and about £30 per month on fuel, and of course any repairs and servicing.

    I was surprised [as a life long cyclist] how effective the assistance is, even when set very low. We have many sharp hills here, and some of them rather long, so the help will make a great difference. My commute is walkable, but an electric bike would in practice be just as quick as using a car, and in winter likely quicker by the time you clear ice from the windscreens.

    If you are half interested, I strong recommend anyone to try out an electric assist bike.

    Best wishes from George

    [PS: Just off to work. I am on the back-shift till Saturday]
  2. Rodrat

    Rodrat pfm Member

    I have a shop bought electric bike and it is fantastic for an overweight, unfit and lazy 65 year old. Don’t feel safe on the road though.
  3. MVV

    MVV pfm Member

    They are wonderful and open up cycling to so many people. I tried the cheapest Halfords job against a posh one on my pub run via a 20% hill and never broke sweat, both fab although the posh one was better built.
    In the end I decided to get fit instead. Which isn't a swipe, I am just 60 and have been fit all my life but had started to slip.
    Saw a couple in their 70s at Penrith Station who had obviously been doing a lakes tour on electric bikes, it is bloody great.

    If I was buying I'd get a VanMoof.https://www.vanmoof.com/en_gb/elect...gEpdZmyF8gHJSD7leMk4dSsT31aHSOSBoC4bUQAvD_BwE
  4. tones

    tones Tones deaf

  5. NeilR

    NeilR pfm Member

    Tut tut, tones.

    A proper Swiss would buy in CH regardless of the price.
  6. Bananahead

    Bananahead pfm Member

    When I bought my current bike I went into a shop here and explained my dilemma. I was going to the UK and could save the VAT. They ummed and ahhed and gave me a 15% discount.
  7. tones

    tones Tones deaf

    Well done! You have neatly encapsulated everything I'm not!

    Mind you, having been here 30 years next year, I'm contemplating the Swiss bit (the proper bit is totally out of reach). Perhaps I should keep the bike hidden when the Schweizermacher come around...
  8. glancaster

    glancaster In the silicon vale

    I bought a cheap electric bike about 10 years ago for commuting 7 miles each way. It was £700. That's may not sound cheap, but it's really about £500 for electrics, and £200 for the rest of the bike (and a £200 bike is a cheap bike). Equivalent is around £900 now.

    Anyway, I knackered it in under 5 years, during which I had to buy one replacement battery (£250 a pop). That replacement was also dead by the end.

    In hindsight, would advise spending more to get Bosch or Panasonic based electrics (although the GTech bikes also look interesting). Now I cycle without electric assistance, so it worked as a kind of 'gateway drug' into cycling for me, thus I'm glad I did it. I would move back to electric cycling if my circumstances change.

    Kind regards

    - Garry
  9. stevec67

    stevec67 pfm Member

    To be fair the Li-ion batteries used don't last for ever. The one in my computer dies every 2-3 years.

    That said the ones in cars seem to last well.
  10. cutting42

    cutting42 Arrived at B4 Hacker Erg \o/

    A rough rule of thumb is around 500-1000 charge/discharge cycles for lithium based batteries before performance falls below 80% original capacity. What kills them quickest are deep discharge cycles when you more or less fully drain it then fully recharge. They much prefer to be only discharged a bit and topped up regularly. This is probably not what happens on an ebike so life will be lower than in say a phone or laptop where you keep it topped up all the time.
  11. richardg

    richardg Admonishtrator

    My battery is Bosch 500w, 2.5 years old. Not noticed any deterioration yet. It gets charged at least twice a week from very low to full. A replacement is 600 euros but companies offer to repack them for about 300. When I notice a drop in life, I will get it repacked.

    I am waiting for 600w batteries or bigger to become the norm at the 2 grand price point. Then I might get my second ebike. There are one or two out there now, I think I saw one with 650w. But it was too expensive for me
  12. cutting42

    cutting42 Arrived at B4 Hacker Erg \o/

    That's only 260 cycles so well within normal life, they tend not to fail quickly, just a steady drop off of punch and capacity.
  13. glancaster

    glancaster In the silicon vale

    I think the Bosch ones have better life than the no-name ones on the bike I had. It's partly the chemistry, and partly the battery management electronics. They certainly look higher quality.

    I found mine had a gradual derioration over time, perhaps down to 60-70% of original capacity, then a sudden complete death. I'm not sure if this is normal or not. Anyway, I got my money's worth out of it, saving plenty of money compared to bus or car, and it improved my fitness, so I can't complain too much.

    Kind regards

    - Garry
  14. Brian

    Brian Eating fat, staying slim

  15. richardg

    richardg Admonishtrator

    If it can't be derestricted I wouldn't get another one. If you are not a law breaking badass like me and just about everyone else on the cycle paths of Strasbourg, you might find the speed limit on them extremely frustrating, kicking in just below the typical cruising speed of 18-20mph for me.
    tqineil likes this.
  16. Darth Vader

    Darth Vader From the Dark Side

    For interest I have a Bosch battery lawn mower, strimmer and hedge trimmer all bought in 2007. I also bought a second battery for them so that I can alternate battery usage. Now after 12 years of use the batteries show no signs of losing capacity - there is a simple three light charge indicator. I leave the batteries to over winter at full charge and come the spring they are still fully charged and ready to go.

    I have just tried an ebike in the Bordeaux wine area a few days ago and am now looking for one powered by Bosch. I'll also get a spare battery but the 500Wh Bosch battery is £700 including VAT. You can buy a bike for that!


  17. richardg

    richardg Admonishtrator

    Yamaha next time for me!
  18. Darth Vader

    Darth Vader From the Dark Side

    In the UK you can buy bicycles with a 350W motor that can reach 45Km/h. However they have to be registered, taxed and insured if you want to use them on the public highway.


  19. richardg

    richardg Admonishtrator

    Right. So far got the Speedo to read 48kmh on mine on a flat. Got a bigger front sprocket to try to crack 60.

    Perhaps the problem with all e bikes is they are using standard chain sets. I am on my third replacement already. In addition the front sprocket on them is so small there are hardly any teeth to cope with the force. Particularly when in top gear. They all seem to slip when you really push.

    That's the real reason I am getting a bigger front sprocket, by three teeth. I may get more teeth on 8,9 and 10 at the rear too.
  20. cutting42

    cutting42 Arrived at B4 Hacker Erg \o/

    Time does not seem to matter very much and Li-ion batteries are quite happy at max or near max charge for months on end. The use in gardening tools (I have the Bosch garden battery kit as well) is pretty much ideal as the drain is often not deep and only every couple of weeks even in the summer.

    I race RC electric cars with Lipo batteries and they need a little more care than the ones in power tools but the basic rules are the same.

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