How long did you research e-bikes before buying your first one?

How long did you research e-bikes before buying your first one?

  • 1-3 months

    Votes: 16 30.2%
  • 3-6 months

    Votes: 11 20.8%
  • 6-12 months

    Votes: 3 5.7%
  • 1 year

    Votes: 1 1.9%
  • 18 months

    Votes: 1 1.9%
  • 2 years

    Votes: 5 9.4%
  • More than 2 years and I'm still searching

    Votes: 6 11.3%
  • Less than 1 month

    Votes: 10 18.9%

  • Total voters
    53

Rick53

Member
i did nearly two months of hardcore research before my first purchase and i nailed it! if i would have purchased after two weeks of research i would not have picked the correct bike for me lol, i would be riding a City Scrambler lol,great bike
but not if your 6/3 and love to pedal!
WHATtttttttttttttttttttt Did you settle with?
 

Readytoride

Active Member
My first real world interaction with ebikes was 6 years ago seeing a couple of people riding ebikes while I was wintering in Key West. Was envious of them having fun and riding with big smiles while I trashed my knee (apparently permanently looking back) on a fixed gear pedal brake heavy-as-sin steel beach bike. By the time I got home (with a painfully damaged knee) I had decided I could convert a 30 year old Giant hybrid I had, but didn't want to have to deal with tools or taking complicated bike parts off.

About 3 months or so of researching and deliberation and watching lots of YouTube videos and reviews I finally selected a Hilltopper - which was about the only product available for a conversation that was plug-and-play. Got two 20 mile batteries to go with the 20mph limited 250w front hub. (Hilltopper didn't have the 350w available back then, otherwise I would have gone for a stronger motor).

Conversion took less than 15 minutes. Had a blast with the "new ebike" and enjoyed it for years. The only problem was that it was throttle only, and had zero modulation of its speed. It was either off, or on. It was tiring to my thumb holding down the tiny button throttle for extensive periods of time. The good part was it would go to 23.6 mph (on the flat) before it cut off. I used to push it to that limit all the time and loved the feeling. I also found out over the years and miles that I rarely ever used any of my bikes 21 gears outside of the highest 4 in the middle range, thanks to the ehub.

Took the bike on lots of group and charity rides. Had to spend a lot of time "feathering " the throttle button to maintain an even pace while I pedaled. That ended up over time being annoying and very tiring. I even called Hilltopper to see if I could buy their new adjustable throttle, but the answer was no as it only worked with the 350w hub.

At the beginning of this year I decided I'd had enough of the throttle only option, and the fact that Hilltoppers only answer to my concerns was for me to buy an upgrade (a whole new set). I wanted/needed an ebike that would be capable of regulating its speed on its own. Since I disliked the chore of having to clean the chain so often, and the belt drives intrigued me as being basically maintenance free, stronger, and silent, that tossed out any idea of another conversion. If I was going to buy a manufactured ebike, a belt drive was on my list of must haves. An ITG hub was also on the list ever since I had ridden with someone who had a NuVinci. A city style step through was another must, as well as an upright riding position to reduce the constant carpal tunnel pain I had on the hybrid, and my regular road bike, from leaning forward. Distance on a battery was a big deal as well. It had to go at least 50 miles on a charge. And it had to have wider tires so I could ride gravel roads without "thin tire" slipping and sliding issues. Finally, I didn't want it to scream "Ebike!!" with a visual battery on the downtube. I wanted a bit of stealth. My converted ebike battery was hidden on a back rack under a set of panniers that also held the second battery for a quick swap if necessary. I didn't even have to remove the first battery for the swap - I simply unhooked the lines from the 1st battery and reconnected them to the 2nd battery carried inside the pannier pocket. I liked that setup. It was neat, efficient, easy, and unobtrusive.

A lot of "must haves", but all based upon past experience on my converted ebike. I wanted what I wanted since this was my fun sport/hobby bike for solo and group rides. Cost wasn't an issue.

Of all the ebikes out there that I researched, only one fit my list to perfection. I never even tried the bike out, nor did I see it in person - I simply called my favorite LBS and asked if they could order it for me. Close to $3k for an untried sight unseen Giant LaFree E+1. Gave the bike store a deposit and waited a week for them to get it in and put it together for me.

I've been in absolute love with the bike since. Even more so now that I have a Kenekt suspension seat post on it. The bike has been honestly mantenance free, and the Yamaha motor has been sublime. It fits perfectly inside my cars for transporting, is tons of fun to ride anywhere, goes the distance I want currently (but that is changing as I'm looking at even longer distances), and is versitile for either pavement or gravel. And it is silent. Dead silent. Deliciously, delectably silent.

What would I do differently? I would have asked about battery options (didn't know and apparently neither did the bike store) and ordered the 500w over the standard 400w for longer distance capacity. I will probably spring for a second battery (will put it on my Christmas list) so that I can comfortably do the metric centuries next year. Have to decide what capacity - a 500w or a second 400w. Hmmmm.

Any thoughts?
 
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What would I do differently? I would have asked about battery options (didn't know and apparently neither did the bike store) and ordered the 500w over the standard 400w for longer distance capacity. I will probably spring for a second battery (will put it on my Christmas list) so that I can comfortably do the metric centuries next year. Have to decide what capacity - a 500w or a second 400w. Hmmmm.

Any thoughts?
My thought on batteries is, unless you're worried about saving every dollar and/or saving every gram of weight, always go with the highest capacity battery available (presuming all available batteries are of the same grade/quality). You can always not use the entire battery, but you can't add capacity onto a battery on a long ride.

It's also better for the battery if you rarely drain it below 20%, and you're more likely to not do so on a bigger capacity battery. If you're the charge-it-and-forget-it kind of person, a larger capacity battery should mean you'll drain it lower than 20% less frequently, and that could be a benefit to long-term battery health. For those who do like to mess and fuss with their battery for maximum longevity (such as trying to not charge it higher than 80%), a larger battery could be critical in letting them do that while still having the capacity they need for the rides that they're doing.

A bigger battery is also more likely to get you (with apologies to Tolkien) "there and back again", without having to charge along the way. I was speaking to a BionX user yesterday who has to charge at work before coming home, and he's now looking at a bike with a Shimano motor that will give him more than double the range on a charge. He can still top up at work if he chooses to, but the better battery life is moving him out of the "has to" column and into the "can if I want to" column, so that's a win.

Presuming you take proper care of it when it's not in use, a higher capacity battery will have a longer service life before it needs to be replaced.

Resale of your e-bike with a larger capacity battery could be higher than if it had a lower capacity battery. Heck, even finding someone willing to buy your bike may be more likely if you're offering it with a higher capacity battery.

When buying a bike at a local bike shop, if a larger capacity battery is available don't be afraid to ask about the option of paying an upgrade charge to get the higher capacity battery. They may be happy to (for example) sell you the 500 Wh battery and take the 400 Wh battery in trade, knowing they could sell it to someone else. They may even be willing to do this for the bike you've already purchased, as they may be able to plug the battery into diagnostics to ascertain battery health, and may value having a lightly-used battery for sale to other customers.
 

Readytoride

Active Member
@Mass Deduction - Thank you for your comments. Happily, money is no object. Satisfation, and getting where I want to go and achieving my goals stress free, is.

Already filled hubby in on my planned rides next year, which will include metric centuries. Several rides are 3-4 hours away, so will have animal sitters lined up at home, and we will do an overnight B&B the day before the ride. I will absolutely need, without question, a second battery to do the distances I want.

Will talk to my LBS tomorrow about ordering in a 500w battery which is currently the highest wattage available for my bike. I will be keeping the 400w to carry with me during the ride, or have my hubby meet me at a designed rest stop so I can switch batteries.

On my old 20 mile battery equiped ebike I carried an extra 20mile battery so that I had a total 40 mile range. The extra weight of the 2nd battery was negligible. The handy use of the extra battery - priceless.
 

Manu

Active Member
The first thing was to inform me of the law in Europe, to know that it was a 25km / h pedelec and its 45km / h variant but no longer considered a bicycle or pedelec, which I liked haibike was a mtb sduro or xduro 6.0 with yamaha (25km / h ) for 3600 euros with double plate and the other option was a sduro trekking 6.0 45km / h 3300euros but illegal no pedelec, which I thought of buying the same because its image was equal to the sduro trekking 5.0 (25km) 2800 euros, but to fulfill the law finally took me to trekking 5.0, but that if with an unlock option at 45 km / h with bluechip for 130 euros more.Very happy and save me 600 euros.It is a great machine, at the moment 3000 km in 2 years 0 problems
 

ilanarama

Member
I had been casually researching (reading articles about ebikes) for about a year, because I knew we were going to move to a location where a townie ebike would make sense. But as our move became imminent I got more serious, trying out a variety of bikes, reading lots of reviews and reports, and trying to refine my needs in a systematic way.
 

Browneye

Active Member
A couple of weeks. There's a lot to see, but it didn't take long to narrow down what I wanted in a bike. And I had a budget, so once I saw what I could get I went with the best offering at a local bike shop.
I also did a conversion kit on another bike - very happy with that as well.
 

FlatSix911

Active Member
Second bike was the Haibike XDuro 4.0. Its been a very solid commuter and a good purchase choice. Better since it fell out of warranty and I added the Bad Ass 4.0. Rode the bike today on my commute. So solid and yet agile. Intuvia (because of the Bad Ass) read 18.1 miles. My GPS logged 35.6 miles. 51% (Bad Ass does roughly cut speed and mileage by half).

Sold the original R&M and purchased the Charger GX (dual battery). If the winds are not favorable, I commute on the GX dual-battery. If the winds are favorable (like today), I commute on the Haibike. Once in a while, I commute on a Tern (mostly on Fridays when time is not a constraint). Once in a while, I do a half commute on my non-electric (on Fridays if winds are favorable). That's my story. The Trek Allant is next. I'm trying to decide which bike to trade-in or sell (Haibike or R&M). I go back and forth. Haven't decided. Might wait until I've fully tested the Trek and made my mods.
Similar story here... I researched various eBikes for a while and was on the fence until I discovered the BadAss Box speed doubler. ;)

I purchased two bikes with identical Shimano Steps E6000 mid-drive motors and never looked back... and did not worry about the warranty since the device is easily removable.

The 20 mph max speed has now increased up to 40 mph as needed on the road. I recently changed the front chain ring from 38 to 44T to better match my natural cadence.
 
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Timpo

Well-Known Member
Similar story here... I researched various eBikes for a while and was on the fence until I discovered the BadAss Box speed doubler. ;)

I purchased two bikes with identical Shimano Steps E6000 mid-drive motors and never looked back... and did not worry about the warranty since the device is easily removable.

The 20 mph max speed has now increased to 40 mph as needed on the road. I recently changed the front chain ring from 38 to 44T to better match my natural cadence.
😲 The E6000 is capable of going 40mph with 44T chainring? I wonder what the E8000 can do.
 
I did a modicum of research but made up my mind pretty quickly. My rather narrow set of parameters that were most important to me made the choice much simpler.

1) A highly visible name brand that I thought would support the bike without reservation.

2) No tinkering. A complete bike with very few additions or upgrades needed.

3) Mid-drive with belt, step thru with no derailleur.

Probably what pushed me over the top was that the salesperson sensed I was pretty close and he offered a discount on the air freight from Germany (which is a lot!) and a further discount on the bike.

I did briefly wrestle with Roloff or Enviolo and 20mph or 28mph but then the $$ kept adding up so I finally drew the line.

I ended up with the R & M Nevo GT Vario.
 
Similar story here... I researched various eBikes for a while and was on the fence until I discovered the BadAss Box speed doubler. ;)

I purchased two bikes with identical Shimano Steps E6000 mid-drive motors and never looked back... and did not worry about the warranty since the device is easily removable.

The 20 mph max speed has now increased up to 40 mph as needed on the road. I recently changed the front chain ring from 38 to 44T to better match my natural cadence.
One thing to be wary of is future firmware updates. Shimano and Bosch are always looking out for things like the BadAss Box, so if you bring your bike into a local bike shop for servicing I'd recommend you specifically request that they not update the firmware. They may do it as a free service to be helpful, if you don't ask them not to!
 

Martinet

New Member
I bought first ebike on impulse after seeing a Prdego ad. A year or so before my daughter persuaded me to ride in a 30 mile tour that turned out to be 40. I haden't ridden in several years and suffered on my old hybrid. A cop pulled me over and ordered me to cool off in his cruiser!

After a gambling win and seeing the ad, I went to the Pedego shop, rode
several models, loved the City model and bought it. LOVED IT. Several months later after returning East and joining this forum, I bought
an Eflow Nitro for there.
 

FlatSix911

Active Member
One thing to be wary of is future firmware updates. Shimano and Bosch are always looking out for things like the BadAss Box, so if you bring your bike into a local bike shop for servicing I'd recommend you specifically request that they not update the firmware. They may do it as a free service to be helpful if you don't ask them not to!
Yes, I agree completely. I always leave a post-it note on the display as a friendly reminder to not update the firmware... works like a charm. ;)
 

shepherd1

New Member
Mine was 3 weeks. I started by doing a lot of reading, watching YouTube videos. I settled on what I wanted which was the Rad. I did not want it to be shipped so I went to my LBS to check some e bikes out. I saw the Como and Vado lines, did some more research, found Como at a great price and purchased it.
 

PatriciaK

Member
When did I join these forums 😉? Been researching since... Probably a couple of months. Although I've looked at several ebikes, I keep coming back to the Giant La Free. I rode the +2 and liked it very much, but the belt drive fans have strongly encouraged the +1. My biggest issue is I live in a rural area, not close to many bike shops. The dealer in town (a branch of a larger dealership) sells Giant, Trek, Izip, Blix, and one, lonely, hub drive Fuji that's been on closeout for months. I still haven't bought, but plan on the La Free E +1 for Christmas, if i can get a decent deal...
 

Dentman333

New Member
I bought a Pedego Platinum Interceptor in Spring of 2017 didn’t look at much else. Since then I’ve had several Rad’s, an Evelo, an Aventon and ridden Specialized, R&M, Stromer, M2S, still researching as the industry is changing fast. I was ready to pull the trigger on an R&M Homage Rollhoff HS until I saw Bosch came out with the Gen 4 motors (HS has more torque than Gen 2) so now I wait............😢