Am I looking for two different bikes?

luggingupthesteps

New Member
Region
USA
Hi all,

I'm young and fairly in shape, no kids. I live in a very biking-friendly city (for the US), and I don't own a car. My Salsa Journeyman 650 is my main ride right now, although I also use the electric bikeshare sometimes. I love my Salsa but to be totally honest, I am sometimes a bit lazy and would love to go on 40-60 minute rides to parts of my city that aren't in the downtown (~20 miles roundtrip) on an ebike instead of the Salsa (usually there are paths/bike lanes). My Salsa is what I take on bikepacking trips, and I'd be open to using an ebike for some of those. I am lucky enough to have many trails right from the city, so I don't need to have transport the bike in a car. I could get to a campsite in say, 15 miles (although I like some that are more like 30 miles away). I don't commute to work and will not in the future.

I currently live in a second floor apartment with no outdoor storage (besides a crap bike rack), and right now I lock my Salsa to a set of water pipes on the house. I could store a bike inside, but the space is tight, thus I've considered folding bikes or ones that are not 70 lb beasts. Something even like the Charge Comfort/City was interesting because of the handlebars/pedals going flat - would be a little less annoying for my roommates if I had it inside. I'm a little under 5'1" so frame size and geometry is extremely important.

I previously owned an EG Athens 250. It felt fun to ride but just felt really unwieldy for me (I think that was more the design than the weight itself) and I hated the battery on the rear rack. Loved the throttle for getting out of intersections.

Am I looking for two different ebikes: one for going to some of the further reaches of the city, and one that can handle a crushed limestone trails to camping? Or is there one that checks a lot of boxes?

Budget is flexible - probably under $4k but it's all about tradeoffs, if there are cheaper ones that can do most of what I want.
 

PedalUma

Well-Known Member
Region
USA
Why not make the Salsa electric, that does not look electric? This would save a ton and will out preform $6400 bikes. Total weight may go up by about 7 pounds, 10 pounds with one removable battery installed.
 

EMGX

Well-Known Member
Why not make the Salsa electric, that does not look electric? This would save a ton and will out preform $6400 bikes. Total weight may go up by about 7 pounds, 10 pounds with one removable battery installed.
Not trying to get too far off topic for the OP but since the Salsa has a stock dual chainring: have you installed a TSDZ2 with dual chainrings and if so how was the chainline without the offset chainring? I know mm wise the 5mm dished chainring has a chainline of 51mm, flat chainring on the inside of the spider 56mm and outside of the spider 61mm but how did that work out for you in real life (if you have done a dual setup on the TS).
 

PedalUma

Well-Known Member
Region
USA
I have not done the dual chainrings because the offset is too much even on narrow chain stay (road) bikes. I also avoid spiders. The dished chairing is best. On a 36V, 350W six-wire without levers, no throttle, no speed sensor, the power is sufficient to take any hill in the SF Bay Area with one chainring and still have fast rides on the flats. The best dished chainrings from NZ only come with 130 BCD. I may need to drill one of these for 110. Offset is one reason I like the internal hubs such as Alfine gears.
 

luggingupthesteps

New Member
Region
USA
Why not make the Salsa electric, that does not look electric? This would save a ton and will out preform $6400 bikes. Total weight may go up by about 7 pounds, 10 pounds with one removable battery installed.
I'm open to converting, but probably not the Salsa. It's a good bike for bikepacking and I don't really want to always ebike out there (not to mention last season having to bike through a few giant puddles that I wouldn't want a battery or motor near).
 

indianajo

Well-Known Member
Well, light bikes are the expensive ones. I'll let you read court reviews to find what you want. You definitely need a 16" or 17" frame, not 18" or "one size fits all". Read through this category: https://electricbikereview.com/forums/forum/light/
Orbea comes to mind. Also some light cannondales. I agree battery high in the back is dumb. I have my self installed battery on the front, where it balances my cargo.
My battery came in an 8" shrink wrapper. I hung the cables down, then I wrapped it in packing foam, the kind that wraps televisions & bike batteries. There is a drip loop coming out of the battery to the controller. Then I wrapped all that in a nice green garbage bag. Lots of 3m packing tape. Then I captured all that in an aluminum frame, with lots of SS machine screws and elastic stop nuts. If a their doen't have an 8" long #2 phillips driver, he's not unscrewing it. He'd have to cut the aluminum frame. 2 have tried at the grocery store, removing some screws, but the wrong ones.
I ride in rain all the time through puddles, whatever. With the battery in the front the wheels don't splash on it. Other cars can splash me and everything pretty good, though. With the battery connectors hanging down, the rain drips off. I don't know if any commercial bike is as well protected against rain. Push spring battery connectors pointed up strikes me as great for selling pretty bikes, but not for riding them in the rain.
Tiny hub motors don't mess up the weight distribution too much. One orbea the motor was so small I couldn't see it because the sprocket was in front of it.
Happy shopping, carrying your bike upstairs, and perhaps camping off it.
 
Last edited:

Dewey

Well-Known Member
I agree the folding headset and pedals on Charge bikes are useful features if you’re keeping the bike in a shared house. Since you don’t like the rack battery the City low-step model has the battery on the down tube, a throttle, and says it fits riders from 5’ 1”

I‘d suggest you test ride a Yamaha Wabash. It’s a gravel ebike, weighing 42lb, the small size frame says it fits from 5’1”, and while it doesn’t have a throttle it has a torquey 70nm Yamaha mid-drive motor that would be a better hill climber than the 250w Bafang hub motor on the Charge City, and it has some nice features like the through-axles front and rear. The drop handlebars don’t fold but the front wheel is quick release so maybe you could turn the handlebars 90 degrees.
 
Last edited:

Dewey

Well-Known Member
I wish the Haibike Radius Tour was still available.
The Tern HSD is neat the way the handle post folds and it can sit upright on its rear rack, the P9 Performance model is the one to get for the extra torque of the Bosch Performance motor, though there is better availability of the stock P9 model as REI carry them. The HSD can fit riders from 4’11”

Propel also sell Riese & Muller Tinker demo‘s for your budget, it shows as out of stock but you could sign up to be told when they’re getting demo models in.
 
Last edited:

PedalUma

Well-Known Member
Region
USA
Here is a 2021 10-speed Specialized conversion for someone who is 4'11". It is 35 pounds. The next bike is a Stop brand bike conversion. It has an internal Alfine hub of gears and a break in the seat stay for a bikepacking belt.
 

Attachments

  • Katies2106.JPG
    Katies2106.JPG
    788.7 KB · Views: 55
  • 12Stop05.JPG
    12Stop05.JPG
    369.5 KB · Views: 57

WattsUpDude

Well-Known Member
Region
USA
City
San Francisco, Bay Area
I‘d suggest you test ride a Yamaha Wabash. It’s a gravel ebike, weighing 42lb, the small size frame says it fits from 5’1”, and while it doesn’t have a throttle it has a torquey 70nm Yamaha mid-drive motor that would be a better hill climber than the 250w Bafang hub motor on the Charge City, and it has some nice features like the through-axles front and rear. The drop handlebars don’t fold but the front wheel is quick release so maybe you could turn the handlebars 90 degrees.

I have the Urban Rush in small. I don't think the Wabash would fit anyone at 5'1" unless they're all legs. 😬
 

luggingupthesteps

New Member
Region
USA
I have the Urban Rush in small. I don't think the Wabash would fit anyone at 5'1" unless they're all legs. 😬
Well, I just looked down and I will have to admit that I am indeed, not all legs. Helpful to know - when the say 5'1" as the low range I know it's probably a no-go.

The Radius Tour did look pretty dope! PedalUma, you are making me more open to a converted one.

Didn't think I'd see a Riese and Muller I would consider being able to afford, interesting. I'll have to look at the Tern. It's more than I wanted to spend but smarter to go higher/closer to my max budget and get all the things I want.