Am I on the right path?

Jo060

New Member
Region
USA
Hi all,
First time poster and first time Ebike builder. I'm in the process of researching to build my first Ebike and was hoping you all could let me know if I'm heading the right direction.

I'm looking to build a simple but reliable bike. I more than likely will not be going on trails and will be sticking to basic bike paths. As far as speed, I think 25mph'ish is good but having a background in streetbike racing, I'm sure that will quickly change. I'm not looking to do long excursions and a 25 mile battery will be more than enough. I live in south Florida so hills are almost nonexistent 😄 and needing the power to go up a large hill isn't a necessity.

I picked up a used bike a few days ago for only $35 and figured that would be a good start...I think. It's a 16 speed Roadmaster MT Sport SX with front suspension. It's road ready, but I'd like to do a little work on it before starting the build (chain, brakes...ect). What do you think about this bike? Will it be a good starting platform or shoud I sell it and look for something else? At only $35, it's not a big loss.

I think I'll go with a Voilamart conversion kit with a 1000w rear motor. It seems to come with everything needed except a battery. I'll also add a torque arm as it sound like it would be cheap insurance.

As far as the battery goes, I can't quite decide what size to get as there are so many options. Based on what I've stated above about speed/distance, what brand/sizes would you recommend?
Just incase it matters as I see it being brought up, I'm 6ft 218lbs.

I'm still doing research, but I think sometime in the future I'd also like to upgrade to front/rear disc brakes.

What do you all think? Does it sound like I'm on the right path?
Anything you would add or change and why?

There is tons of information here and I'm excited to learn more.
 

RunForTheHills

Well-Known Member
Region
USA
While you aren't spending much on the bike and motor kit, I recommend that you budget for a better quality battery using name brand cells from a reputable seller to reduce the risk of fire. Some reputable sellers are Luna, EM3EV, and Grin. Also, you can convert the front brake to disk by replacing the fork, but I wouldn't trust the bolt on rear kits. That bike isn't worth putting a lot of money into anyway. I would just buy another bike with disk brakes and move the kit over when you are ready to do that. In the mean time, you can improve the brakes on your bike by replacing the pads with Koolstop pads. If you want to get 25 miles out of the battery at 25mph, you will need a larger battery. Maybe something like a 48V 15Ah battery or bigger. Riding at slower speeds and contributing by pedaling will improve your battery life. Air resistance causes a much higher battery drain at higher speeds.
 

Jo060

New Member
Region
USA
While you aren't spending much on the bike and motor kit, I recommend that you budget for a better quality battery using name brand cells from a reputable seller to reduce the risk of fire. Some reputable sellers are Luna, EM3EV, and Grin. Also, you can convert the front brake to disk by replacing the fork, but I wouldn't trust the bolt on rear kits. That bike isn't worth putting a lot of money into anyway. I would just buy another bike with disk brakes and move the kit over when you are ready to do that. In the mean time, you can improve the brakes on your bike by replacing the pads with Koolstop pads. If you want to get 25 miles out of the battery at 25mph, you will need a larger battery. Maybe something like a 48V 15Ah battery or bigger. Riding at slower speeds and contributing by pedaling will improve your battery life. Air resistance causes a much higher battery drain at higher speeds.
Great advice. I truly appreciate it. I didn't even think about upgrade the pads.

If I plan on using pedal assist for a majority of the time do you still recommend that size of battery?
 

RunForTheHills

Well-Known Member
Region
USA
You can easily get 25 miles from a smaller battery if you are riding at 15-20 mph instead of 25 mph and use a lower assist level. @PedalUma uses small batteries that are the size of a water bottle on his builds and takes them on longer rides. It just depends on how you want to use the bike. Hills can eat up the battery also, but you don't need to worry about that where you are.
 

Jo060

New Member
Region
USA
While you aren't spending much on the bike and motor kit, I recommend that you budget for a better quality battery using name brand cells from a reputable seller to reduce the risk of fire.
Out of curiosity, are less reputable batteries known to catch fire?
 

RunForTheHills

Well-Known Member
Region
USA
Out of curiosity, are less reputable batteries known to catch fire?
I don't want to sound too paranoid. Battery fires aren't that common, but they do happen and it is a chemical fire that is hard to put out. There is at least one person on this forum and another on a different forum I am on that have had their homes burn down due to a battery fire.

Ebike batteries have to store a lot more energy than a cell phone battery, so the fires they cause are larger. The manufacturers of the cheap knockoff batteries cut corners to cut costs and they are more prone to fires. Batteries usually catch fire while they are charging, but the two people I mentioned had their batteries catch fire while out of town and sleeping respectively.

If you do get a cheap battery, keep an eye on it while charging it. You can also store it in a fire proof place like your barbecue, oven, or fireplace/stove. Some people get an old ammo box to charge the battery in, but keep in mind that the battery will put out toxic fumes while it is burning and the metal box won't stop that from filling up your home. Some people charge outdoors only or they get a rolling cart to charge the battery on that they can shove outside if it catches fire.
 

Jo060

New Member
Region
USA
I don't want to sound too paranoid. Battery fires aren't that common, but they do happen and it is a chemical fire that is hard to put out. There is at least one person on this forum and another on a different forum I am on that have had their homes burn down due to a battery fire.

Ebike batteries have to store a lot more energy than a cell phone battery, so the fires they cause are larger. The manufacturers of the cheap knockoff batteries cut corners to cut costs and they are more prone to fires. Batteries usually catch fire while they are charging, but the two people I mentioned had their batteries catch fire while out of town and sleeping respectively.

If you do get a cheap battery, keep an eye on it while charging it. You can also store it in a fire proof place like your barbecue, oven, or fireplace/stove. Some people get an old ammo box to charge the battery in, but keep in mind that the battery will put out toxic fumes while it is burning and the metal box won't stop that from filling up your home. Some people charge outdoors only or they get a rolling cart to charge the battery on that they can shove outside if it catches fire.
Good to know. Sounds like a reputable brand is the way to go.
 

Dave Rocks

Active Member
Region
Canada
I think the bike you bought is a $60 new Walmart bike.
1000 watt motor could break it. Check the welds on the bike closely.
 

Jo060

New Member
Region
USA
I thought it was this bike.
It is. From my understanding that model isn't made anymore and that video is from a discount website. I've searched previous ads from Walmart and it was between $150 and $200.

Welds look pretty solid from what I can see.
 

Taylor57

Well-Known Member
Hi all,
First time poster and first time Ebike builder. I'm in the process of researching to build my first Ebike and was hoping you all could let me know if I'm heading the right direction.

I'm looking to build a simple but reliable bike. I more than likely will not be going on trails and will be sticking to basic bike paths. As far as speed, I think 25mph'ish is good but having a background in streetbike racing, I'm sure that will quickly change. I'm not looking to do long excursions and a 25 mile battery will be more than enough. I live in south Florida so hills are almost nonexistent 😄 and needing the power to go up a large hill isn't a necessity.

I picked up a used bike a few days ago for only $35 and figured that would be a good start...I think. It's a 16 speed Roadmaster MT Sport SX with front suspension. It's road ready, but I'd like to do a little work on it before starting the build (chain, brakes...ect). What do you think about this bike? Will it be a good starting platform or shoud I sell it and look for something else? At only $35, it's not a big loss.

I think I'll go with a Voilamart conversion kit with a 1000w rear motor. It seems to come with everything needed except a battery. I'll also add a torque arm as it sound like it would be cheap insurance.

As far as the battery goes, I can't quite decide what size to get as there are so many options. Based on what I've stated above about speed/distance, what brand/sizes would you recommend?
Just incase it matters as I see it being brought up, I'm 6ft 218lbs.

I'm still doing research, but I think sometime in the future I'd also like to upgrade to front/rear disc brakes.

What do you all think? Does it sound like I'm on the right path?
Anything you would add or change and why?

There is tons of information here and I'm excited to learn more.
I would defer to Pedaluma Lama