24 lb. (!) 16" folding e-bike

Gene Keyes

New Member
I've been searching EBR and the Web for 16" e-bikes, and after posting that article [in Other] on the gazillions of e-bikes in China, I suspected that might be a place to look, especially Alibaba. Initially here in Canada I found something for $1,499 called EBikeBC UltraLight Foldable http://ebikebc.com/product/ultra-light-foldable-e-bike/ from a shop of the same name in Burnaby, British Columbia. (I'm on the other side of the continent, in Nova Scotia.) By instant message, I cross examined a support person as to whether that 24 lb. (11 kg) weight included battery; he insisted it did. It is single speed; he said the chain is rustproof steel; motor is Alkema brushless; 250 W; no carrying bag.

I was just itching for Court to get out his selfie stick and give that bike his full video treatment.
upload_2016-6-2_3-28-39.png


Then I went to Alibaba, which is a huge candy-store of e-bikes, and found that same one in the $400 price range
http://www.alibaba.com/showroom/16-inch-electric-bike.html
http://www.alibaba.com/product-deta...92745356.html?spm=a2700.7724857.29.225.0CQLm6


I'm still comparison-shopping for this sort of e-bike. (As mentioned elsewhere, I'm also pondering the Energie Cycles Excursion 2.0, with shaft drive — but that one is twice as heavy as this!) I've bought some small cheap electronics directly from China: some good, some not so much; but haven't dealt with Alibaba on something this big. Assuming that one is not a total piece of junk, it would fit my situation: am a retiree in a nice small relatively flat town of Berwick, and only need to get around for groceries and fall scenery and such. Any comments? Nova Scotia is way off the beaten path when it comes to e-bikes, so I can't test drive these things, and must let Court do it for me.
 

Alex M

Well-Known Member
Don't want to sound arrogant, my first post here after much lurking around. But I really doubt.
One of the lightest PROPERLY MADE non-electrical 16" wheel folders, Brompton, weighs 18 lbs in Titanium, single speed. Any electrical kit will add at least 12 lbs, with the weakest motor and smallest battery possible.

To get total 24 lbs you need the bike itself to be 12 lbs . If you find a folder that light, it will come with major shortcuts affecting both comfort and safety. And, if you don't want to pay big $ for Titanium, it will be very thin Aluminum (thin to make it lighter).

About Alibaba, Ebay etc. This is a separate issue from 24 lbs weight. You will be buying not only directly from China, but also from unknown manufacturers. Offbrand frame, motor and battery. This is a risk, though 12 lbs frame in this scenario worries me the most.

By all means, please post your results if you find something that light and test it for some time.
 
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Gene Keyes

New Member
That bike is now down to $998 on the Canadian website http://ebikebc.com/product/ultra-light-foldable-e-bike/ with 10 in stock, where it says up front that it is not good for long distances or commuting. Also it says that "the battery is embedded inside the frame and will not be removed" ?! That would be a dealbreaker if I can't get a spare or replacement battery. Still, I'd like to see Court have a go at it.
 

Gene Keyes

New Member
OK, I'm taking a calculated risk, and ordering this bike without a full Court press. I'll try to do a poor man's EBR, so watch this space.
 

Gene Keyes

New Member
While I'm waiting for the EBikeBC to arrive, let me ask if anyone remembers a 1992 forerunner, the Sinclair Zike (not the same as a more recent scooter-bike hybrid). It was designed by UK inventor Clive Sinclair, pioneer of pocket calculators, and small personal computers. It too was 11 kg, had a [NiCad] battery inside the tube — and the motor was there too. I wanted to be a Canadian dealer (am retired now), but they never replied, and the bike flopped within 6 months after selling only 2,000. It had an optional basket in back, but the wheels look too small to me: perhaps 12 inches?

(Link Removed - No Longer Exists)



Ahead of its time. Here are some other links, including a very recent 3:36 YouTube:


https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sinclair_Zike

http://spectrum-zx.chat.ru/zike.htm

Plus another short YouTube from 1992, of Clive Sinclair demonstrating the Zike:

 
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Gene Keyes

New Member
The 16" ultralight EBikeBC has arrived, and I've been giving it sea-trials. This is a sneak preview of my review. Most important to me is whether an ebike this light could handle my heavy grocery loads. I've ordered two folding baskets for the rear luggage carrier, like the ones already on my old 16" folder. Meanwhile, I put a spare folding basket on the ebike, and got a bunch of groceries today. So far so good. Watch this space.
upload_2016-10-8_21-27-36.png
 

Gene Keyes

New Member
Preliminary Review, "EBikeBC" aka "New Easy"
24 lb. 16" folding electric bike

Here is a quick summary of a perhaps longer review with video and more illustrations to come. I am 75 now, an American long-time resident in Nova Scotia, Canada, and have never owned a car. I've always biked around for routine errands, and — before I retired — getting to work (not commuting in the heavy-duty sense). I've had a manual 5-speed 16” folding bike for 11 years, and a one-speed 20” folding bike for many years before that.

My aging legs were starting to yearn for an e-bike, and after much searching on the Web (and Court's vids), I selected this one because it is the lightest, simplest, and sleekest of its kind, and just about the most affordable besides. http://ebikebc.com/product/ultra-light-foldable-e-bike/

EbikeBC.com is a Canadian shop in Burnaby, British Columbia, specializing in electric motor kits for bikes, but as of now they are also the only North American dealer selling this ultralight. It is a Chinese e-bike called “New Easy”, which “EBikeBC” rebranded with their Web name, and upgraded to their own specs: such as a 250 W motor instead of 180 W. The e-bike is produced by Suzhou New Easy Electronics, Suzhou city, Jiangsu province, near Shanghai. See their web page for more details and pictures: http://www.sneec.net/en/aspcms/product/2015-7-8/348.html

Here are some initial impressions after just a few days and several test rides; so far, so good.

PRO

• Very light: an aluminum-magnesium alloy for the frame. Claims to be 11 kg or 24 lbs, including motor and battery. I weighed mine, and found it to be 25 lbs. — with my cable lock (whereas my old non-electric 16” folder is 35 lbs. including two carrier baskets).

• Inexpensive: $998 Canadian, or ca. $755 US, with free shipping to US and Canada.

• Luggage rack!

• There is an on-off button which makes the motor available upon using a twist grip; and the only readout is one, two, or three lights showing how full the Li-ion battery is.

• Folds and balances itself when folded (unlike my two earlier folders which just made a random protrusive lump that could not stand nor hold themselves together).

• 250 W brushless hub motor in front wheel does its thing; simple twist-grip throttle goes up to as fast or faster than I need.

• Nice V-brakes; and folding pedals better than on my old one.

• As shown in my previous post above, it can carry me (140 lbs) and a big load of groceries, uphill and all.


CON

• Though I am accustomed to single speed bikes, this one is very hard to pedal, like the highest gear on my 5-speed.

• Pedal assist is not a good way to start the motor. It suddenly cuts in at too high a speed; then cuts out unless you use the twist grip as well. Instead, I set a preferred speed using only the twist grip, then start pedaling if desired, e.g., up a hill.

• The lack of a simple battery exchange was almost a deal breaker for me; but I decided I would risk crossing that bridge when the battery wears out in five years. The battery is not only hidden in the main frame tube, but well nigh inaccessible (ergo, very hard to steal!). One has to unscrew the front headlight, etc., insert a new set of cells, and do some re-wiring. I requested pictures, and the process looks like gutting a fish.

• Although the LED headlight is good looking, connected to the bike battery, and turns itself on in the dark, it doesn't really illuminate the road in front of you.

• Although the bike stands by itself in folded mode, which only takes a few seconds, it would be better to have a kickstand as well — especially for when I soon install the rear baskets on the luggage rack.

• The twist-grip is very uncomfortable, full of bumps and ridges; so I promptly covered it with a cut-out piece of a foam handlebar grip.


Keep watching this space: I hope to emulate Court's kind of review — except not nearly as detailed: and after getting a selfie stick, I found I couldn't use it with his aplomb. And balance! I'll do what I can, or yield to Court if he can get ahold of an EBikeBC.
 

Thomas Jaszewski

Well-Known Member
Hello! I'm curious how this has worked out? Battery still providing enough power? I'm a huge fan of folders and the incredible price spread is just that, incredible.
 

Gene Keyes

New Member
Hello! I'm curious how this has worked out? Battery still providing enough power? I'm a huge fan of folders and the incredible price spread is just that, incredible.

Four months in and still doing fine. It may not be everyone's cup of tea, for its lack of range, and lack of an instantly replaceable battery, but it gets me around our small town, and overcomes a bothersome, though not steep, hill between me and the shopping area. Lacking an odometer, I estimate it goes ca. 15 km between charges, and so far I've re-charged 8 times (@ 3 or 3.5 hrs). Each charge has been good for 4 shopping trips or the like, often with a heavy load and uphill against the wind; plus 2-3 shorter hops as well. (I've installed a pair of folding baskets in back for the big stuff; and the included front shopping basket, which I thought I wouldn't like, comes in handy for my helmet, tie-downs, gloves, bags, mail, potato chips, etc. )
 

Thomas Jaszewski

Well-Known Member
I look forward to reading more in the future! Have fun. I'm and oldster too and eBikes have changed how I live and move about a small city. I'd love to see the battery configuration!
 

Thomas Jaszewski

Well-Known Member
Four months in and still doing fine. It may not be everyone's cup of tea, for its lack of range, and lack of an instantly replaceable battery, but it gets me around our small town, and overcomes a bothersome, though not steep, hill between me and the shopping area. Lacking an odometer, I estimate it goes ca. 15 km between charges, and so far I've re-charged 8 times (@ 3 or 3.5 hrs). Each charge has been good for 4 shopping trips or the like, often with a heavy load and uphill against the wind; plus 2-3 shorter hops as well. (I've installed a pair of folding baskets in back for the big stuff; and the included front shopping basket, which I thought I wouldn't like, comes in handy for my helmet, tie-downs, gloves, bags, mail, potato chips, etc. )
After spending 20 minutes o the site I'm very curious. Those little gear drive motors are amazing. I have one made by Mxus. Is there a label or name on yours? I'm also curious about the battery. I like the 26F cell, it can be a fine choice in the demand range of a small GD. Nice that they spell out brand name batteries. I'd REALLY like to see what the battery looks like. I'm hoping they respond. Seems a very nice company and well put together and VERY informative site. I really enjoyed the review. Well done! Did the information with the bike spell out anything about the battery? When the day comes the newest cells will nearly double you're already satisfying mileage. I thin the folding design might just make the bik
 

Gene Keyes

New Member
If the batteries shown here are the replacement type then it's really going to be a simple replacement!
http://ebikebc.com/product-category...ttery-batteries-and-accessories/bare-battery/

Update. Extremely helpful company!

To answer this and your previous post:

The motor has no labeling on it, but I believe I was told it was an Alkema Brushless.

Before getting the bike, last September I had pressed EBikeBC about its battery; these are excerpts from our online chats:


me

The FAQ says "the battery is embedded inside the frame and will not be removed. you can take the ebike anywhere with you to recharge." But CAN it be removed, and another battery put in?

Alec

not easy to do that
needs rewiring

me

What do you do when the battery needs to be replaced?

Alec

sending back the bike or we send you the replacement letting it be done by a technician

me

What does a replacement battery cost?

Alec

about CAD $280

me

How often does the battery need to be replaced, or how many charge cycles does it have?

Alec

400-600 full cycles
or 5 years

me

Does the battery have a brand name?

Alec

not for folding bikes.
they are Chinese cells with 24months factory warranty
they send replacement to us in case of any defect


***

me

I wish you had an AA battery pack...

Alec

I think the size is A but about 14 cells

Note: I also pressed EbikeBC for pictures on how the battery is replaced, and got these:

Hi Gene

find attached some pics showing the battery and controller installation.

the blue thing is the battery. you need to remove the head light, then controller and then pull out the front fork stem to be able to slide out the battery.

cheers

Ali






I also asked EbikeBC to itemize the upgrades they said they had made to the Chinese original NewEasy:

here is the list of improvement we made for the folding ebike from the earlier samples we ordered from the supplier:

1- motor power upgrade from 180w to 250W

2- speed parameters from 20km/h to 25km/h

3- controller mosfets quality upgrade

4- handle bar stem stiffness enforcement

5- Charger Low voltage adjustment (not to let battery die if the ebike is left on)

6- Charger UL (US and C) approved.

7- Enhanced paint quality

8- Battery BMS upgrade [BMS-Battery Management System —gk]

EbikeBC is not claiming any credit over ultra light electric folding bike other than some optimization and adaptation to North American market
I had also pressed them to send me an instruction manual; at first they thought it lacked one, but then they found and printed and sent me a very skimpy 6-page item. No mention of how to replace the battery, but among the specs, it says the battery is a 24 v 8 A.h.

Am not grumbling here; I'm OK with EBikeBC responses, but as always, wish the darn battery was easier to change. —GK
 

Thomas Jaszewski

Well-Known Member
I suspect the biggest problem may be configuring, not changing. They promised me pictures. Unfortunately yours aren't attached.

EDIT they are 26650 batteries, 7s2p, 7 pairs. I'm certain changing the battery would be easy. Once the replacement was built, and there are additional options, it would be as simple as reconnecting two wires, +red,-black. I'm writing my builder to see what a replacement would cost, or if the BMS is accessible.

Typical eBike batteries are 18650 18mm x 65mm, these are 26mm x 65mm, the additional size means higher amperage for each battery. Compared to 18650.

Pretty simple and I 'm confident even if they went out of business the replacements would be no problem. Congratulations. Nothing to worry about there. Very responsive company! These batteries seem to be very common in the vape business.
 
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Gene Keyes

New Member
I suspect the biggest problem may be configuring, not changing. They promised me pictures. Unfortunately yours aren't attached.

EDIT they are 26650 batteries, 7s2p, 7 pairs. I'm certain changing the battery would be easy. Once the replacement was built, and there are additional options, it would be as simple as reconnecting two wires, +red,-black. I'm writing my builder to see what a replacement would cost, or if the BMS is accessible.

Typical eBike batteries are 18650 18mm x 65mm, these are 26mm x 65mm, the additional size means higher amperage for each battery. Compared to 18650.

Pretty simple and I 'm confident even if they went out of business the replacements would be no problem. Congratulations. Nothing to worry about there. Very responsive company! These batteries seem to be very common in the vape business.

You say my pictures aren't there? I pasted 3 directly into the reply, visible at my end; but now I'll upload them separately.
photo451150194226080105.jpg
photo451150194226080106.jpg
photo451150194226080107.jpg
 

harryS

Well-Known Member
Haha. I was thinking there was a hole in the steerer tube to extract that battery, but then I read where Alec says the fork has to come out first. Still has to be a place to get the wires thru. I wonder how they do that.