Convert a Class II to a Class I

Discussion in 'Help Choosing an Ebike' started by Philly5834, Nov 16, 2017.

  1. Philly5834

    Philly5834 New Member

    Am a newby. Is there any way of retrofitting what is a Class II bike to a Class I without the throttle so as to conform to state regulations regarding usage of bike paths. Technically, can you, for instance, just take the throttle off of a Bionx P350RX, thus making legally a Class I bike. Would the regular e-assist function be impacted by such a change? Thanks

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  3. JRA

    JRA Well-Known Member

    There is no difference in permitted use between Class I and Class II bikes in any of the states that have adopted that law configuration. Only Class III with throttle have no recognized access.

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  4. Philly5834

    Philly5834 New Member

    Thank you very much!
  5. Sonoboy

    Sonoboy Active Member

    While true, Philly needs to be aware of certain locales (such as New York City) where we’ve seen the authorities crack down on certain bikes that have throttle assist.
  6. J.R.

    J.R. Well-Known Member

    Can I assume you're riding in PA? There aren't class designations in Pennsylvania. I've been ebiking here (central PA) for 3+ years, since they were legalised in 2014. Simple law here, 20 mph, 1 hp max (~751 watts), and obey all other bike laws. There are a few other stipulations in the law to separate ebikes from mopeds and scooters, but if yours is a bicycle with assist, either throttle or PAS, you're good. Where you might see "no motorised vehicles" signs, they do not apply to ebikes. Philly does have some very strict bike path speed limits, they are enforced and some are very conservative, as low as 9 mph. Be careful of that, otherwise have fun!
  7. Alphbetadog

    Alphbetadog Active Member

    Nice to see some common sense laws!
  8. Philly5834

    Philly5834 New Member

    Would that I was in Pennsylvania, am in upstate New York and contemplating purchase of a recumbent trike which has a Class II motor. Seems that even if NY legalizes e-assist next year, it will only be for Class I equipped bikes--thus my question. Was born and raised in Philly, thus the moniker.
    J.R. likes this.
  9. rich c

    rich c Active Member

    It's going to depend on how the controller circuitry is designed. Should a case by case situation, no universal answer.
  10. J.R.

    J.R. Well-Known Member

    If it's a Bionx system, there's no better person to ask about the conversion than @Ann M. I'm sure she'll chime in with the tag.
    Ann M. likes this.
  11. Ann M.

    Ann M. Administrator

    Philly, removing the throttle (or boost button if it's a newer BionX system) would technically make that system a Class 1. Some of the earlier Trek electric bikes were just that sort of set up. I don't think different states keep lists of specific brands or models for the class rating; however, check with your local laws. If it's Pennsylvania, then chat it up with @J.R.; he's the most knowledgeable about PA laws :D.

    Removing the throttle on any PAS system will not interfere with the pedal assist function at all. You just loose the ability to add throttle power to boost the pedal assist.
    J.R. likes this.
  12. Dewey

    Dewey Active Member

    On the Bafang BBS series mid-drive kit motors it's up to the rider if you choose to add the throttle or not, you can use a configuration cable to hook up to a PC/laptop and change the controller power/speed settings to conform to your state's ebike rules. I did this with my BBS01 motor, did not attach the throttle and just use the pedal assist. Unsure how this would hold up in the unlikely event of a liability suit which is why I would like to see the People for Bikes model ebike classification system be passed in my home state but with the wording slightly amended to make it more explicit that home build/DIY kits can be Class-compliant certified by a local bike shop that services ebikes.
    Last edited: Nov 20, 2017
  13. Philly5834

    Philly5834 New Member

    Thanks so much for all the helpful information and Happy Thanksgiving to all!