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I was a pretty serious cyclist back in the 80s and 90s. At 61 I still ride, but it's harder now (go figure). I'm thinking that it might be more enjoyable now if these ebikes are everything they are cracked up to be. Of course the brand websites make them out to be fantastic, I'm interested in opinions from those who have used them. Suggestions for important features, good brands, and if they are worth the pretty steep price. I suppose when I bought my Austro Daimler Inter 10 racing bike back in 1980, $500 was a pretty steep price too.
 

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When I was working there was a guy in Meadville that had one and he just seemed to be everywhere. Looked like it would do 20 mph or so and only saw him pedaling occassionally. Other than that no experience with them.
 

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They are all over New York City being used by delivery people...they look pretty dependable.....a big issue...particularly in the City where there is typically so much traffic...what happens if an ebike is involved in an accident with a car?...These ebikes do not have insurance, nor are the operators required to pass a test ...like for a Motorcycle, and are actually being operated as a motor vehicle..who pays in the event of an accident?
 

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They are all over New York City being used by delivery people...they look pretty dependable.....a big issue...particularly in the City where there is typically so much traffic...what happens if an ebike is involved in an accident with a car?...These ebikes do not have insurance, nor are the operators required to pass a test ...like for a Motorcycle, and are actually being operated as a motor vehicle..who pays in the event of an accident?
Same as if the person is riding a regular bicycle, if the person riding the bicycle is at fault, they are personally responsible for the costs (and the other party will then have to get the money from them, the process and results will vary depending on jurisdiction).
 

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We own four ebikes. I bought the first one in 2015. Then in 2016 my wife wanted one. then I bought a kit for my old Mongoose hybrid mountain bike that I was able to take the hills with until 2015 and turned it into an ebike. We love riding them. In fact, we just got back from a neighborhood ride. The nice thing about them is that you can choose how much exercise you want to get at any given time, from no assist to full assist. We bring a pair of them up to the lake for the summer and leave two here because we enjoy riding so much. There are also numerous paved trails and federal and state parks to ride in. The prices start at below $1000 and go way up.

NYC has its own problems with messengers using ebikes. They ride like maniacs and have caused special regulations for ebikes in the city.

If you are considering buying one, go to a local bike shop and request a test drive on a couple models.

Here is a good website to learn about ebikes and read reviews:

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My one and only experience with one was extremely positive. Helped, I guess, I was riding through vineyards along the Rhine in Germany, then loped up a long, but not too steep climb into foothills of the German Alps to a goat farm for various cheeses and brandys.

The ones my friend and I rode provided electric power assist to pedaling, they did not provide power to drifting, so you had to pedal to get any assist!..They had many gears, like maybe 10, and worked great.

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WOW! Jere...nice lawn in that picture...AL..how much time does t take to charge?...and then how much riding time from that charge?
 

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Charging time varies depending on how far you ride and can be 1-4 hours unless you completely drain the battery, in which case about 6 hours. Depending on the size of the battery you can get anywhere from 25-60 miles on a charge. The average is about 35-40.

There are currently three classes of ebikes. The assigned class depends on how fast the bike can go and whether or not is has a throttle, which allows you to ride without peddling if necessary. I believe they should remove the throttle as a means of raising the class because the throttle doesn't make the bike go faster. I use it strictly for going uphill and for starting from a standstill. My bike weighs 64 lbs.
 

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Yeah, we are all getting on in years and the enjoyment of bicycling tends to get a bit difficult when you are older. There is also the problem for some that on an upright bicycle all those little road bumps tend to take their toll on the hands, wrists, shoulders and neck while mentioning that those narrow little saddles become a royal pain in the ____.
My only form of transportation for over 15 years in Denver was a bicycle, didn't even own a car. When I became disabled after an industrial accident, I looked around for a handicapped option. Lo and behold, I found a recumbent tricycle that fit all my needs. It's like sitting in your easy chair it's so comfortable and all the problems of sore hands, arms, shoulders and necks are a distant memory.
I rode this trike at age 56 in 2012 from Denver to Pensacola, FL pulling a Burley trailer and still have both. The one I have is a HP Velotechnik Gekko FX, made in Germany. It folds in half making it easy to transport in a car. I had special gearing installed where I have 81 speeds. Mine cost around $3,500 though you can get others for under $1,000. Although you can if you try, it is rather difficult to fall over when riding. That means that you keep your feet on the pedals while stopped, ready to go. No track stands, no wobbling about at a stop sign and no unclipping to stand on one foot, if you get tired going up a hill, just stop and catch your breath then go again.
As with any type of bicycle, there are battery powered versions and kits are available. Those interested in recumbents can check bentrideronline.com where at the top of the page, they have links to most of the manufacturers that make 2, 3 and 4 wheel recumbents. They also have a forum where one can learn anything they want.

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I'm trying to envision 81 speeds on a bike. :unsure:
 

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I'm trying to envision 81 speeds on a bike. :unsure:
What is interesting is that it appears as any other 27 speed setup: Three chainrings in the front where the pedals are attached and nine cogs on the rear wheel. But I also have a SRAM DualDrive internally geared 3-speed hub in the rear wheel. That gives me a low, standard and high range for each separate gear. It's actually geared for the low end making it easier for hills (bought the trike in Denver) rather than the high end for speed. I'm old and disabled, speed was great at one time. Now I just want to be able to get out and enjoy the ride.

Sadly, that SRAM DualDrive isn't made anymore, but there are other options like the Shimano Nexus, the Rohloff, and the Kindernay XIV to name a few.
 

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That Bentrider website also has a forum segment (free to join & post) dedicated to e-bikes, just about anything you want to know about the battery powered setups for any kind of bike. There are all kinds of helpful stuff like software tips that limits the speed, reviews of different combinations of drivetrains, building your own from different parts and a whole bunch more. It's really a one-stop place for recumbents much like MTF is for tractors. I learned so much there before I ever bought my first that I was at the very least, more knowledgeable even though I had been riding bikes for years.
 

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I hadn't heard of the S-RAM Dual Drive hub before. Thanks for the explanation.
 

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Perhaps once this quarantine stuff is past, some of you may want to go a bit further on your e-bikes than just around the block. I did when I rode the recumbent from Denver to Pensacola (2,600 miles). A guy (one along with many others) had to cut his around the world tour short in Thailand. His blog that I've been following for years has so many great pics from all the places he's been. A website for bicycle tourists:

 

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Discussion Starter #15
We own four ebikes. I bought the first one in 2015. Then in 2016 my wife wanted one. then I bought a kit for my old Mongoose hybrid mountain bike that I was able to take the hills with until 2015 and turned it into an ebike. We love riding them. In fact, we just got back from a neighborhood ride. The nice thing about them is that you can choose how much exercise you want to get at any given time, from no assist to full assist. We bring a pair of them up to the lake for the summer and leave two here because we enjoy riding so much. There are also numerous paved trails and federal and state parks to ride in. The prices start at below $1000 and go way up.

NYC has its own problems with messengers using ebikes. They ride like maniacs and have caused special regulations for ebikes in the city.

If you are considering buying one, go to a local bike shop and request a test drive on a couple models.

Here is a good website to learn about ebikes and read reviews:

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How hard was the kit to install? I have a nice Cannondale hybrid I would consider converting if it is not too difficult and the results are worth it. I looked into the kits once but got very confused about amp hours, watts, and such. I couldn't really figure out what I needed.
 

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There are front hub, rear hub and even mid-drive kits. I have the front hub kit and that is the easiest kit to install. It took me a little over an hour to finish the installation. I like the front hub drive but if you will be going off road you have to take slow starts without using the throttle because the wheel tends to spin out on gravel when starting from a dead stop.

The kit I bought from Leeds comes with either a 250 or 500 watt motor and a few battery options. A throttle may be optional but personally, I wouldn't be without one. There are several companies selling kits and some have more power, but if you are not going to do heavy mountain biking, 500w is plenty. The number of amp hours determines how far you can ride on a full charge. 36 to 48 amp hours is average.
 
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