Big Man, What and When to Buy

DaveW

New Member
First, thanks for the reviews and the site. They have been very helpful.

I long to commute to work. It is only about 20-25 miles in total with some big hills. I was going to do this to save money, have fun, and get in shape. After purchasing a Surly LHT and building it with moderate components, I found that I was not in shape enough to ride to work, and I could not stomach riding around the block to build up the strength. So now I see an e-bike as a way to meet my goal today.

Rider:
6'4" 34" inseam
370 LBS yep it is embarrassing, but it is what it is.

Ride:
All paved with one or two steep and long hills.
Traffic should be bearable

Parking:
I would like to bring the bike to my office, but have bike racks available.

I am not concerned about speed, but don't want to be slow. I can make time to make it to work on time.

Price is always a concern, but I am willing to spend what I must to accomplish the goal, but I also have a habit of buying more than I need.

I know anything over 250 lbs and 6' can be hard to fathom, but what would you say would be the max weight a rider could be but still ride?

What bike would you recommend for a tall and fat rider that wants to get in shape? Would you go with a bike kit for the Surly frame, or a full built e-bike?
 

James

Well-Known Member
Hi Dave,

Welcome to the forum! I commend you on your efforts to get in better shape and take another vehicle off the road! My commute is similar in length to yours and I can tell you it's been a great adventure so far.

I ride a stromer st1 platinum and have had no issues to date. I'm not sure what it's max weight limit is, but can tell you it's a very sturdy (heavy) bike that is made for our sort of commute. I upgraded to the 15.5 amp battery and am getting to work or home with an average of 40% bat life left. I am 5 10" and weigh 175 for comparison sake.

You'll probably be testing the limits of the battery range in the beginning while you rely on mostly battery/motor to propel you. As your fitness level increases your battery's life will increase right along with it. I recommend whatever bike you decide on to be purchased close (ish) to your home. It makes servicing and any warranty issues much easier to deal with.
Feel free to ask any questions here!!

Cheers and good luck,
James
 

EddieJ

Well-Known Member
Welcome Dave.

A daily 20-25 mile commute over here in the UK would be considered a tough ride by anyone's standard, so fair play to you for considering it.

Lack of knowledge prevents me from being able to make any bike suggestions, but one thought that I do have when you get up and running with an e-bike is whether you could split the ride up until you have reached a comfortable fitness level. Over doing it could spoil what should become a nice lifestyle choice.

You could perhaps drive half way and then ride from there. When I first began riding I would take the bike and vehicle to work, cycle home, rest over night and then cycle back to work in the morning. I then drove home and back to work the next day and repeated this for a period of time until my fitness built up.
 

Chris Nolte

Well-Known Member
Dave,

Welcome to the forum. The Long Haul Trucker is a great bike, we actually just converted a disc trucker for a fellow forum member named Tommy. I think the Stromer ST1 James mentioned would be a good fit, you might even consider the Elite as it has more torque. Another bike to consider is the eFlow Nitro as it will be released in the next month with a 14.5ah battery similar to the Stromer which will come in handy on longer rides and/or if you need more assistance.

I recommend these bikes because they have 26" wheels which are going to be wider and more stable than a 700c wheel. Another bike to consider is the Pedego Interceptor II or the Pedego City Commuter with a 48v battery (these might be a bit tight on rang though, but they will be more powerful and the Interceptor fits taller riders quite well).

I would look for a bike with at least a 500 watt motor and keep in mind the range figures will decrease significantly from what's listed, as they generally test on ~170lb riders. Besides the wider tires and more powerful motors you also want to make sure the bike has adequate brakes, disc brakes are really ideal and hydraulic disc brakes are even better. Aside from that we usually fit bikes for larger riders with a more comfortable seat, Serfas makes some really great ones.

Quick question as this might help widen your selection. Is your ride to work 25 miles round trip, or one way? If it's round trip there are a lot of bikes that have a max range of about 30 miles, which would translate closer to 15-20 and then you could charge at the office.

BTW - splitting the ride is quite a cool idea Eddie, I really like it.

Feel free to call or email me and I'd be happy to help

Best,
Chris Nolte
Long Island Electric Bikes
 

Court

Administrator
Staff member
Chris, great point about balance with the 26" wheels. They will also provide more mechanical advantage with a hub motor driven ebike due to decreased diameter vs. 700c/29".

Dave, it sounds like you've got a ~25 mile round trip ride and a somewhat flexible parking policy. Many of the nicer ebikes offer a removable battery which means that even if you leave the bike in the garage (locked up with u-lock and cable through the wheels) you can still top off the pack at your desk using a standard wall outlet. That's a great opportunity in case you want to make a few stops to run errands or eat along the ride home :)

Regarding bike recommendations... the Stromer series is great but I love the Pedego Interceptor II for you because it offers the larger frame, softer balloon tires and a strong geared 500 watt motor with both pedal assist and throttle drive modes. This means you could easily stop pedaling if you got tired and just scooter home or take advantage of the assist feature to help you get some cardio and extend range. Here's a picture of the co-founder riding his Pedego, these guys are a little boxier and one of their stated goals when creating the cruiser line was to provide comfort and strength to climb hills and not struggle even with larger riders. Note that both of the bikes pictured have been modified to include a suspension fork. The second picture shows a Trail Tracker which uses the super-wide tires and does not offer pedal assist, note that battery is also more basic and does not include a light.

pedego-founder-ebike-huntington-beach.jpg trail-tracker-with-suspension.jpg

Eddie's idea of partial riding is creative but some of these bikes are heavy and lifting them onto racks is no fun. It's also just inconvenient because it takes extra time and costs extra money to buy a special hitch mount rack like this one from Thule or this one from Yakima.

I think the Trail tracker is priced well and checks the boxes for strength and power but here are a few more ideas for you:
  • IZIP E3 Path+ it's smooth, efficient and powerful (500 watt motor but it's gearless so a bit less torque when starting up) it also offers pedal assist and throttle. The frame is solid, it's well priced and has a great warranty. The tires aren't as large (or soft as with the Pedego) and the ride position is more upright but it feels great to pedal and the high-step version comes in Medium and Large so you can get a good fit. It also comes with a rack, fenders and is pre-wired for lights. It can also top 20mph in pedal assist mode whereas the Pedego will not.
  • Any of the Kalkhoff ebikes are smooth and powerful but not as fast and probably more upright vs. the extremely relaxed Interceptor and the medium-relaxed Path+. The other downside here is limited availability. James made an excellent point about trying to buy local because you'll get free tuneups and have an easier time with drive system repairs and warranty issues.
  • Biruni Scarlett is a very sturdy cargo bike with medium-relaxed ride position. It offers throttle and assist modes along with removable battery. The motor is 500 watt geared (like the Interceptor) and the tires are large and soft. It also features a very unique step-through design while still providing a larger frame. For you this could be great because it makes the bike easier to mount. It's relatively affordable and the founder is very cool, the company is smaller so you'll get plenty of support directly (he will want to make sure you're satisfied) but it's not available through many shops yet. Note that it also comes in yellow, black or light blue... Don't be thrown by the redish pink image at the top of the review :)
 

Ravi Kempaiah

Well-Known Member
Few other points to consider,
  • A simple google search yields several posts by people who have bent their rims and most commonly the spokes. Normally, bikes come with 32 spokes/wheel, I think 36 spoke rim would be helpful also.
    Anything above 300 lbs you need a 12g or 2.3mm spoke. Most ebikes come with 13g spoke (2 mm).
  • Of course a large frame for 6'4" rider and 2.2 inch+ tires. A quick google search on Izip path plus shows the max permissible weight is 286 lbs. Is it possible to change spokes and rims?
    E3 Path plus.JPG
  • Stromer has 12g = 2.3mm spokes and can carry upto 350 lbs.
    Stromer weight.JPG
  • I just watched the video of edge runner with Falco motor and seems it can haul some good cargo and weight.
 

Kaldeem

Active Member
Did DaveW ever reply with what bike he got? Just curious about the choice of another large male.
 

geon

New Member
Hi All!

I just read Dave's thread with interest because my situation is somewhat like his, in terms of size & weight.

But I am amazed at how reticent you all seem to be to discuss the costs of your suggested ebikes.

When recommending a car to someone I could wax poetic over Bentleys and Aston Martins and Lamborghinis and Porsches but what good would those suggestions be without mentioning the price tags associated with those vehicles?

The typical electric bicycle today seems close to what I paid for a brand new Fiat 128 2dr Sedan off the showroom floor in 1973. ($2995)

On the other hand I recently saw an e-bikes online which looked intriguing.

X-Treme NEW 2016 Alpine Trails Electric Mountain Bicycle

Price: $549 & Free Shipping

Weight limit: 350 Lbs.

http://www.amazon.com/X-Treme-Alpin...ds=electric+bikes&refinements=p_36:1253559011

Due diligence is in order here, but it looks closer to what Dave was looking for and the price is certainly reasonable.

Another one which looked very interesting was the Wave.

The Fastest and Most Affordable Electric Bike EVER! Priced Only $599 for a LIMITED TIME!

https://www.indiegogo.com/projects/wave-electric-28-mph-bike?gclid=CP-ZpOn6n8cCFUuTfgod32sDBw#/story


These are the kinds of suggestions a newcomer can best use. Not fantasy ebike names and features and benefits with the prices left out because they are so damned expensive!

Nice to meet you all.

LOL

Geon
 

J.R.

Well-Known Member
X-Treme NEW 2016 Alpine Trails Electric Mountain Bicycle
A sealed lead acid battery will be extremely heavy with poor performance and short lifespan and the 300 watt direct-drive motor would also be a poor performer for a large person. This is a very dated build in the current ebike spectrum.

The Wave isn't a reality yet as it's a crowdfunded campaign that has yet to deliver a product. There's a good amount of information here in the forums on the Wave, use the search tool in the upper right corner of the forums main page.
 

J.R.

Well-Known Member
Which method of transport is faster for Dave W or someone like us.

An e-bike?

Or a 1000 Watt e-Scooter?
Depends on what you want! An ebike will give you exercise, scooter not. The scooter you note would be classified a motorcycle on any public roads I'm aware of in the U.S. That scooter is a 1.3 HP, 17 mph top speed (according to the review posted), sealed lead acid battery (deep cycle = heavy SLA) powered, 80 lb motorcycle, requiring a tag and insurance and whatever else your state requires for a motorcycle including motorcycle endorsement on your drivers license. And will your state register that scooter for road use? If you choose to ride a scooter like the Super Turbo on public roads and get caught, you could be cited with a moving violation against your drivers license.

Don't get me wrong I love motorcycles, I've ridden them my whole life, but in the long run this is not a bargain! It's neither fast or cheap. I'm not trying to burst your bubble, just offering my opinion on the choices you've offered. You may want to look at more of Court's reviews on lower cost ebikes.

Good luck!
 
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Lowquality

New Member
Check your local laws, Scooters are the same as bikes in Louisiana, but are limited to only being able to go 25 mph. LA does not allow you to even buy tags on a scooter so you either can or cant drive one on the road.


On a 2nd note - I am 6'1 and 280 lbs - I was looking for a e-bike kit probably in the 2000w range. I have a 1200watt scooter and it does well, but I would not reccomend anything under 1200 watts for anyone bigger than myself. MY brother who is 380 lbs could ride my scooter and it did fine with him but it was much slower.
 

MLB

Well-Known Member
Hi All!

I just read Dave's thread with interest because my situation is somewhat like his, in terms of size & weight.

But I am amazed at how reticent you all seem to be to discuss the costs of your suggested ebikes.

When recommending a car to someone I could wax poetic over Bentleys and Aston Martins and Lamborghinis and Porsches but what good would those suggestions be without mentioning the price tags associated with those vehicles?

The typical electric bicycle today seems close to what I paid for a brand new Fiat 128 2dr Sedan off the showroom floor in 1973. ($2995)

On the other hand I recently saw an e-bikes online which looked intriguing.

X-Treme NEW 2016 Alpine Trails Electric Mountain Bicycle

Price: $549 & Free Shipping

Weight limit: 350 Lbs.

http://www.amazon.com/X-Treme-Alpine-Electric-Mountain-Bicycle/dp/B0112P6186/ref=sr_1_13?s=sporting-goods&ie=UTF8&qid=1439259253&sr=1-13&keywords=electric+bikes&refinements=p_36:1253559011

Due diligence is in order here, but it looks closer to what Dave was looking for and the price is certainly reasonable.

Another one which looked very interesting was the Wave.

The Fastest and Most Affordable Electric Bike EVER! Priced Only $599 for a LIMITED TIME!

https://www.indiegogo.com/projects/wave-electric-28-mph-bike?gclid=CP-ZpOn6n8cCFUuTfgod32sDBw#/story


These are the kinds of suggestions a newcomer can best use. Not fantasy ebike names and features and benefits with the prices left out because they are so damned expensive!

Nice to meet you all.

LOL

Geon


None of those cheap bikes are going to hold up to a 350+ man..........
Plain and simple.
Stromers and other expensive bikes are BUILT to last and are much heavier duty in frame construction and other factors.
So before you rip, you might want to consider getting a clue first. ;)
 

Farbike

New Member
First, thanks for the reviews and the site. They have been very helpful.

I long to commute to work. It is only about 20-25 miles in total with some big hills. I was going to do this to save money, have fun, and get in shape. After purchasing a Surly LHT and building it with moderate components, I found that I was not in shape enough to ride to work, and I could not stomach riding around the block to build up the strength. So now I see an e-bike as a way to meet my goal today.

Rider:
6'4" 34" inseam
370 LBS yep it is embarrassing, but it is what it is.

Ride:
All paved with one or two steep and long hills.
Traffic should be bearable

Parking:
I would like to bring the bike to my office, but have bike racks available.

I am not concerned about speed, but don't want to be slow. I can make time to make it to work on time.

Price is always a concern, but I am willing to spend what I must to accomplish the goal, but I also have a habit of buying more than I need.

I know anything over 250 lbs and 6' can be hard to fathom, but what would you say would be the max weight a rider could be but still ride?

What bike would you recommend for a tall and fat rider that wants to get in shape? Would you go with a bike kit for the Surly frame, or a full built e-bike?


I am 6'4" and ride the X-treme X-cursion XB-310LI. Its a larger frame than most electric bikes and as a big guy myself it is a very comfortable ride, not to mention it folds. Check it out at Farbike here: http://www.farbike.com
 

MLB

Well-Known Member
Dave,
I'm going to caution to go slow here. You are taking a big big jump from (assumed) not doing much to gonna do a whole lot all at once. IF you haven't been biking or doing other cardio at all, even an E bike is going to be hard and make you sweat in all likelihood. What is going to be easy in a month is going to hurt at first and make you sweat and maybe arrive at work feeling and looking pretty crappy. (hills)
These aint' motorcycles :)
And that's the long term, in the short term there's not a bike seat in Heaven that's not going to kill you by the end of the first week. Maybe the first day home.
Your butt will be the stopper here. ;)

Whether its an E bike or regular bike, you are going to get stronger amazingly fast. And the stronger YOU are, the less you will be overworking that little motor.
Why can't stomach riding around your neighborhood? That's how you get strong. That's how you get comfortable.
If you haven't been biking, starting out going 20+mph is NOT a great idea!
If you are somewhere you can ride now, I'd be on that Surley as much as possible, working on it (having fun!) until you can ride 10 miles or so. At that point, you've spent hours getting to know the bike and it's handling and improving your skills.
By springtime you'll be in 100% better shape (amazingly fast when you work at it consistently) and dropped some weight and you'll be ready for 25 mile rides with assist.
Right now, there's not a bike out there that's going to make this NOT hurt. ;)
 
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