Considering Building My Own E-Bike

Ian

Member
Hey there,

I'm considering the idea of doing my own e-bike build and have been looking around at various options that would be cheaper than buying one off the shelf. Ideally I'd have a $2,000 budget but still get plenty of power and range as well as utility for that dollar amount.


I've currently got a Cannondale 24lb road bike that I like, but I feel that it doesn't really work too well for my 22 mile one-way commute that I'd like to do by bike since it isn't that comfortable, doesn't have durable tires, doesn't have much grip in wet conditions and doesn't have attachment points for a rack, etc. So I've been toying with the idea of getting a hybrid mountain bike like the Motobecane Elite Adventure X5 from Bikesdirect for about $500 and making that into my dedicated commuter bike similar to FlyMeAway's recent build.

I'm thinking I may go with a Bafung 500W motor that will hopefully be quiet enough to let me bike on bike trails without being too noisy, and like a 15-25Ah battery pack ideally mounted to the downtube, but my options seem limited since I do not have a shop and materials available to create a custom aluminum battery housing. It would be great if I could find one online that would house a large battery on the downtube as a bolt-on option.

If doing my own build is too difficult, I'd consider getting something like the Kalfkhoff Agattu Impulse 2 or the Haibike Trekking but those are too pricey for what I'm willing to spend on an e-bike at this point. Also, I feel like I would get more gratification from doing the build myself and maintaining/upgrading it over the years. Curious to hear input/ideas for how to make this build a reality.

Cheers,
Ian
 

JoePah

Well-Known Member
Have fun with your build! If it's just commuting, and a lot of it, then a direct drive motor is your best choice.. Silent operation, and very reliable. Just get one with Pedal assist so you don't have to hold the throttle.

The most important aspect of a bike comfort are the tires and frame and seat. we're all different in what we think comfortable is... For me I ride on an oversized frame on 23mm continentals chilis, and a prostrate friendly seat from Specialized... All on a 40 year old steel French racer.

What bike experts have told me is to look for frames with tall head tubes, indicating a more comfortable frame design.

And right now is year end clearance time.. Probably can get 20% off or more on this years models.
 
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Adora

Member
What surprises me most is how little confidence the e-bike manufacturers seem to show with their dismal warranty promises of one - two years.

You guys are talking about DIY builds with bikes tha thave lasted decades ... I am waiting for a manufacturer to offer a lifetime warranty on the frame and 5 years on the motor and battery ;-)
 

JoePah

Well-Known Member
What surprises me most is how little confidence the e-bike manufacturers seem to show with their dismal warranty promises of one - two years.

You guys are talking about DIY builds with bikes tha thave lasted decades ... I am waiting for a manufacturer to offer a lifetime warranty on the frame and 5 years on the motor and battery ;-)

Stromer has a very good warranty.. I think it's 3 years on motor and battery.. Not sure DIY eBikes are more reliable, unless quality parts and batteries are used. Then it's about $1700 for the conversion + bike..
 

Adora

Member
Bafang BBS02 750W http://www.electricbike.com/bafang-bbso2-750w-mid-drive/

First of all, it can easily be installed on over 90% of the common frames available. The installation is simple enough that any average cyclist who is capable of fixing a bicycles flat tire … can install this drive by themselves. Second, the 1,000W power range (when controller is unrestricted), and small size are fantastic for most potential E-bikers. Lastly, the big surprise about this drive is that it is so quiet!

Also, the 500W/25A unit runs on a more affordable 36V battery for E-bikers who don’t have extreme hills.
 

JoePah

Well-Known Member
Bafang BBS02 750W http://www.electricbike.com/bafang-bbso2-750w-mid-drive/

First of all, it can easily be installed on over 90% of the common frames available. The installation is simple enough that any average cyclist who is capable of fixing a bicycles flat tire … can install this drive by themselves. Second, the 1,000W power range (when controller is unrestricted), and small size are fantastic for most potential E-bikers. Lastly, the big surprise about this drive is that it is so quiet!

Also, the 500W/25A unit runs on a more affordable 36V battery for E-bikers who don’t have extreme hills.

Those kits esp in the 750 w range have problems. .search ES on FB or on the web.
 

Ravi Kempaiah

Well-Known Member
I agree BBS02 is becoming very popular but there are so few vendors in US who can actually replace your drive if something goes bad [ I mean have spare inventory in hand and physically accessible].
Lectric cycles can help if you are in Arizona but other than that if you are sourcing from em3ev or Bafang, you're on your own.
I have heard of the "clicking problem" in the recent batch. QC is still a concern when you get motors from outside.
 

calvin

Active Member
Bafang BBS02 750W http://www.electricbike.com/bafang-bbso2-750w-mid-drive/

First of all, it can easily be installed on over 90% of the common frames available. The installation is simple enough that any average cyclist who is capable of fixing a bicycles flat tire … can install this drive by themselves. Second, the 1,000W power range (when controller is unrestricted), and small size are fantastic for most potential E-bikers. Lastly, the big surprise about this drive is that it is so quiet!

Also, the 500W/25A unit runs on a more affordable 36V battery for E-bikers who don’t have extreme hills.
Yes, they are quiet: