Try before you buy electric bikes

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Try before you buy electric bikes

Post by Paulmold on Thu Aug 09, 2018 9:05 am


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Re: Try before you buy electric bikes

Post by boxerman on Thu Aug 09, 2018 11:25 am

I've developed a yen for an electric bike and it seems that most shops selling electric bikes will let you have a go on a demonstrator - not necessarily for 48 hours.
Halfords do not have anything that I fancy though. I like the look and price of the Pulse ZR-5 but no-one seems to have one in stock locally.

Frank
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Re: Try before you buy electric bikes

Post by peugeotboxer on Thu Aug 09, 2018 12:45 pm

Our local bike shop will let you have a bike for a week and if nobody else requests it, you can hang on to it.
I think it may be a government financed thing?
A friend had one for nearly a year!!

He did actually buy one from them in the end though.

PB
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Re: Try before you buy electric bikes

Post by Gromit on Thu Aug 09, 2018 1:52 pm

Frank - you have a PM

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Re: Try before you buy electric bikes

Post by boxerman on Thu Aug 09, 2018 3:08 pm

Thanks Dave, read and replied to up!

Frank
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Re: Try before you buy electric bikes

Post by Maasai Warrior on Thu Aug 09, 2018 9:06 pm

Try Rutland Cycles, Whitwell on the north side of Rutland Water. Our friends recommended them. We live in Sutton Coldfield and were a little unsure of buying so far away. However it was the best thing we did. My wife wanted an Ebike, to keep up with me! No it just makes our rides out much more enjoyable together and we can go further without me having to wait for her. Now it is a little more balanced especially since I got a better bike for myself. Now she waits for me! At Rutland Cycles they will take you out on a new Ebike of your choice, and there is no pressure, or you can hire for a day or half day to understand how to use an Ebike. We had lots of questions!  It was great fun trying out  a small section of the circular route around Rutland Water. In the end we purchased a Scott EBike for her and it is brilliant. Remember the summer season for bikes is coming to an end and the 2019 models will be trickling in from September onwards. So you may find the model you want is out of stock everywhere. However it is the best time for ‘sales’ of Ebikes and you could well pick up a bargain. Do a lot of research and find out if the model of Ebike you find in stock, say 100 miles away, can be still serviced by a dealer closer to you. Halfords is a good start, go for a battery as big as you can afford and check out the recommended makes. For example a good battery is a Bosch 500 watt hour. This will give you good distances for ECO, TOUR, SPORT and TURBO settings. My wife’s Ebike also has a setting for WALK, which means if the hills are too steep then walking and pushing the bike becomes much easier as Ebikes are heavy, 24 kgs including the battery in our case. We are loving our trips out, it must be the coffee and cake stops!

Hope this is helpful.

Pete
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Re: Try before you buy electric bikes

Post by boxerman on Thu Aug 09, 2018 9:30 pm

I've actually ordered one today from a local guy.
I did not want to spend over £1K on what is basically a motorised pushbike and I did a lot of online research to find something to suit my needs and pocket.
I originally fancied the Pulse ZR-5 [diamond frame] but when I looked at the ZL-5 [open frame] today, I decided to have one of those instead smile!
It ticks all the right boxes for me but it might not be to other folks tastes.

Frank
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Re: Try before you buy electric bikes

Post by Eltel on Thu Aug 09, 2018 11:28 pm

My wife bought one about ten years ago but after a few years we sold it (at a massive loss) it was very heavy (especially the battery) and the bike was bulky to store.

Has the technology moved on with lighter models,less bulky and lighter more powfull batteries.

Eltel
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Re: Try before you buy electric bikes

Post by Maasai Warrior on Fri Aug 10, 2018 7:26 am

Check out this monster! 

Quote from Internet -
“Electric bikes are not here just to help you get up some steep hills anymore. Electric motors are making their way in all segments of bicycles, scooters, and motorcycles.The Sur-Ron lives in between those segments as a monster ebike /motorbike with 50 miles of range and an insane 50 mph top speed. With a 2000watt hour battery”

I tried one on the road yesterday, absolutely brilliant! Throttle controlled and has two modes ECO and SPORT. Fantastic acceleration! Costs around £4500! The owner runs a “doggy day care” business and uses it to exercise large dogs in a large field, perfect as it is silent.

It is the future and its Chinese!

- Though you can’t beat a two stroke Francis Barnett! The smell - ahhhhh!  smile!

Pete


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Re: Try before you buy electric bikes

Post by Quilter on Fri Aug 10, 2018 7:56 am

Sadly I fear the Sur-Ron and clones will spell the end of carefree unlicenced cycling for those thousands of us who just want a bike which saves us a bit of effort on a gradient.

We saw several in France this spring and they were being used, predictably, by the young and fit, on cycle paths and at speeds most of us would not even dream of.

At the moment regulation of pedalecs with throttles is debated by authority but, since they are not a nuisance or a danger when used responsibly, nothing is done. How soon, after these souped up bikes cause accidents, can we expect that we will all have to be licenced to ride an e-bike ?
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Re: Try before you buy electric bikes

Post by boxerman on Fri Aug 10, 2018 8:07 am

Eltel wrote:My wife bought one about ten years ago but after a few years we sold it (at a massive loss) it was very heavy (especially the battery) and the bike was bulky to store.

Has the technology moved on with lighter models,less bulky and lighter more powfull batteries.

Eltel
The model I ordered yesterday is supposed to weigh 24kg with battery - the shop guy reckons the battery weighs approx 3kgs.
I picked it up easily and it felt lighter than my existing, ancient 'manual' pushbike which is all steel compared to aluminium of the new one. Possibly an illusion, but I can lift it quite easily. The battery is supposed to be good for 30 to 50 miles on the lowest setting, depending on rider, terrain etc..

- Though you can’t beat a two stroke Francis Barnett! The smell - ahhhhh!  smile!
With a bit of Castrol R in the tank?

Frank
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Re: Try before you buy electric bikes

Post by boxerman on Fri Aug 10, 2018 8:17 am

Quilter wrote:At the moment regulation of pedalecs with throttles is debated by authority but, since they are not a nuisance or a danger when used responsibly, nothing is done. How soon, after these souped up bikes cause accidents, can we expect that we will all have to be licenced to ride an e-bike ?

According to the research I did, if it has a throttle control then it must be regarded as a moped and taxed, insured etc..  
The only ones you are now allowed to ride on the road with no licence, tax, insurance or crash helmet are the ones which need the pedals to be moving before the motor assists. The motors can only have a maximum power of 250w and assistance cuts out at 25kph - 15.5 mph.
In N.I. they are all classed as mopeds.

Frank
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Re: Try before you buy electric bikes

Post by Quilter on Fri Aug 10, 2018 8:28 am

boxerman wrote:
Quilter wrote:At the moment regulation of pedalecs with throttles is debated by authority but, since they are not a nuisance or a danger when used responsibly, nothing is done. How soon, after these souped up bikes cause accidents, can we expect that we will all have to be licenced to ride an e-bike ?

According to the research I did, if it has a throttle control then it must be regarded as a moped and taxed, insured etc..  
The only ones you are now allowed to ride on the road with no licence, tax, insurance or crash helmet are the ones which need the pedals to be moving before the motor assists. The motors can only have a maximum power of 250w and assistance cuts out at 25kph - 15.5 mph.
In N.I. they are all classed as mopeds.

Frank

The regulations are all in place for the above but have not been passed in the EU.. My 3 year old , completely legal, Wisper 806 SE has a throttle but, critically, it cannot propel me on its own at more than 15 mph so I do not need a licence. I find it very handy for that extra boost needed on sudden slopes, like those up to locks on canal towpaths force example. Saves sudden quick changes of the assistance level control to get more power.
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Re: Try before you buy electric bikes

Post by Maasai Warrior on Fri Aug 10, 2018 8:37 am

I understand these will require to be taxed and insured in the UK. But as usual there will be some who will ignore this with safely consequences for others. The problem is they are very quiet and can creep up on you. Just ordinary fast mountain bike racers are a pain in the butt on the Tissington Trail, and even on the quiet cycle route around Rutland Water!

Off for a bike ride to Lichfield this morning with coffee and cake at the Chapter Coffee place. Yummy!

Pete

Frank, you mean a shot of Redex!

Pete
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Re: Try before you buy electric bikes

Post by rgermain on Fri Aug 10, 2018 9:05 am

Electric bikes, bit like joining the Triumph motorcycle club with a new bike instead of an oil leaking kick start Bonneville.

What's wrong with peddle power?
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Re: Try before you buy electric bikes

Post by boxerman on Fri Aug 10, 2018 9:17 am

rgermain wrote:What's wrong with peddle power?
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Richard
Is that some that salesmen have? smile!

Frank
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Re: Try before you buy electric bikes

Post by Quilter on Fri Aug 10, 2018 9:17 am

rgermain wrote:Electric bikes, bit like joining the Triumph motorcycle club with a new bike instead of an oil leaking kick start Bonneville.

What's wrong with peddle power?
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Richard

Absolutely nothing and when we were younger and fitter I would have agreed with you.  Bikes are the only form of transport we have when in the van and, looking back over the three years we have them,there are very many places that I wouldn’t have even contemplated going to on the pedal bikes e.g. from the coast up into Portuguese hill villages, along some of the many miles  of dedicated cycle tracks in Spain and France and along the canals in UK. I do pedal as well as using the electric assist so get some exercise and I have never once got even close to discharging the battery. At the end ofca long day exploring on foot it is good to know that there is some help in cycling back home ! I wouldn’t have gone otherwise.

I do find if I am pedal cycling then I tend to wobble when we start going up hills and this is not very safe on busy roads.   Use of electric assist eliminates that completely.


Last edited by Quilter on Fri Aug 10, 2018 9:19 am; edited 1 time in total
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Re: Try before you buy electric bikes

Post by Gromit on Fri Aug 10, 2018 9:18 am

rgermain wrote:Electric bikes, bit like joining the Triumph motorcycle club with a new bike instead of an oil leaking kick start Bonneville.

What's wrong with peddle power?
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Richard
Hi Richard
Apart from the fact that your computer can't spell "pedal" (sorry - couldn't resist  snigger) the answer to your question is "Old age and dodgy knees".

As I see it, the huge advantage of an electric bike is the ability to pedal as much as you can and therefore benefit from the exercise, but to have some power assistance when the road gets too steep or there's a gale force head wind.

In many situations like hilly countryside or a windy day, the pedal bikes would stay on the rack, but the electric bikes turn a gut breaking chore into a pleasant ride. Plus you would be amazed how much shopping can be easily transported with a bit of help from the motor.

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Re: Try before you buy electric bikes

Post by Maasai Warrior on Fri Aug 10, 2018 11:38 am

Quilter and Dave, we totally agree. Caroline, my wife says perfect comments. I personally haven’t gone over to electric yet but maybe next year! My new hybrid bike just keeps me in touch with the boss! She agrees, that she still gets plenty of excercise with using pedal assist only when necessary. We are off back to the Yorkshire Dales soon and as well as Settle to Ingleton (did that the last time on our sluggish mountain bikes) we will now consider Langcliffe (Settle) to Malham. I will struggle a little bit out of Langcliffe but we now know we will get back without any problems. (return hill out of Malham maybe interesting for me!) Maybe the decider for an electric bike next year!

Pete
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Re: Try before you buy electric bikes

Post by harrysp on Fri Aug 10, 2018 1:32 pm

rgermain wrote:Electric bikes, bit like joining the Triumph motorcycle club with a new bike instead of an oil leaking kick start Bonneville.

What's wrong with peddle power?
-----------
Richard
I have owned three ebikes over a 10 year period, having bought the first when ‘pedal power’ became impossible. As a result of a disability they have been the difference between riding and being stuck on the campsite unless we take the van out. My bikes have taken me to countless places otherwise inaccessible, carried my shopping back to site, and given me numerous hours of pleasure combined with a little exercise. It is very disappointing that we can’t live and let live. Thankfully we’re all different and have different needs. 

My new shiny Bosch powered bike will hopefully take me to many new places and I can’t wait to get out on it.

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Re: Try before you buy electric bikes

Post by rgermain on Fri Aug 10, 2018 2:00 pm

Sorry about my spelling, never has been my best subject, ( it did pass spell check)

I suppose that at my age I should be thankful that I am still able to pedal? a bike without falling off, I do have a step through bike that my Grandson calls a ladies bike.
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Re: Try before you buy electric bikes

Post by Quilter on Fri Aug 10, 2018 2:12 pm

rgermain wrote:, I do have a step through bike that my Grandson calls a ladies bike.
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Richard

Good point.If anyone is contemplating an electric bike then remember that they are heavier than push bikes. This makes the usual push to get moving and fling leg over saddle bit somewhat less easy.

Even from a standing start I ( female) tried several conventional shaped ladies electric bikes and couldn’t get my leg over ( as it were...) without losing my balance. Painful and undignified. My low step through Wisper is the perfect answer.

Another thing to look out for is how easy it is to operate the electronic controls when wearing gloves and how easy to see the display and press buttons in bright sunshine.

We bought rear view mirrors for these bikes and these are a great asset.
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Re: Try before you buy electric bikes

Post by Paramedic on Fri Aug 10, 2018 2:34 pm

It gives us great pleasure to those that say "cheat" when seen with our bikes to reply "that you obviously no nothing about electric bikes". Their ignorance in the technology that gives you exercise when more effort is applied needs to be explained to highlight that the e bike is not just an electric perprambulator albeit with only two wheels. We drive home the argument more so by asking the question, "do disabled people that use mobility scooters over a wheel chair also cheat"? They don't know our personal circumstances, Pam has arthritic knees and now could never travel upwards of 40 miles on a given day with hills and headwind. The van stays on site so our travels are by bus or bike. A local cycling club has seen an increase in members that have taking up cycling again thanks to e bikes.  smile!

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Re: Try before you buy electric bikes

Post by Maasai Warrior on Fri Aug 10, 2018 2:47 pm

Originally my wife decided on the step through version as this was like the one she tested, and got on with it very well. I suddenly realised after we had ordered it that without a low ladies crossbar there was no way we were going to fasten it security enough to the aluminium bars on either our Fiamma rack or preferably our towball Westfalia cycle carrier. So we quickly changed the order from the step through unisex model to the standard ladies model with a low crossbar. Having tried it on both racks we are now sure it can be safely secured. I am sure others won’t have a problem with this but the Scott aluminium framing is quite chunky so you are limited to what the rack bar claws can safely be secure to! Both racks will take up to 60kg but I will only put the electric bike on the Fiamma rack, on its own, close to the van as I don’t want the weight dragging the rack off the back! Without the battery the weight is 20kg so hopefully will be ok, until we get a tow ball for the van and use the Westfalia rack. This will ultimately be better for lifting on and off.

Pete
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Re: Try before you buy electric bikes

Post by Gromit on Fri Aug 10, 2018 2:59 pm

Hi Pete

I think your solution was preferable, but are you aware of false crossbars? If the Memsahib ever really needs a step through in the future, one of << THESE GADGETS >> might solve the problem with the cycle rack.

There are lots of variations on the web.

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