Difficulties in choosing a bike

Jim Jim

New Member
I am looking to buy an electric bike and finding that it is very hard to find a bike based on specs. I first started reading to learn about E-Bikes and the technical side of E-Bikes. I am a road biker since 15 years and usually do about 30 miles flat riding. I can’t ride around my house since it is hilly and I’m 240 lbs and getting old. From my reading I concluded that I need a 500-750 Watt mid-drive with a 36-48 Volt 1000 wh battery to have the power and distance that I need with extra reserve for doing some hills. I have not found a single website that you can search based on motor and battery power. I have to open each model and look for the specs that they hide to find what I need. Can I get some recommendations if first the pecs I’m looking at make sense and what manufacturers I should consider. Is there a way to search based on specs rather than the BS talk about the moon and stars?
 

Alaskan

Well-Known Member
Sorry but I cannot agree with your specs. Those wattage minimums apply to rear hub motors, not mid drives that use the gearing in the drive train to leverage their power into more efficient torque. Doing research on ebikes on the internet, without doing test rides is doing only a small part of the needed research to land on a bike that really will work for you,

I am almost 70, have heart issues and other health challenges, weigh in at 215 lbs. and ride a Bosch HS mid drive with a nominal 250 watts. It has always been more than adequate for me and I live in a hilly area with a 17 degree grade leading up to my house.

Rather than deal with imaginary specs based on cyber research, my best advice is to go down to your nearest Trek, Specialized and Ebike shops and test drive everything that looks like it may work for you. Get a practical, seat of the pants feel for the options that are actually available. You will get to meet and size up the personnel at the various bike shops as well and get a feel of who you would like to be supporting you after you buy the bike.
 

fooferdoggie

Well-Known Member
any name brtand mid drive iwll do you well. Plus they will; feel like peddling a regular bike. Plus they have support and the longest range as they are more efficient then a rear hub. along with the name brand you have bulls too they are on sale right now. cost a bit less great components.
 

Art Deco

Well-Known Member
Region
USA
City
Selinsgrove
Time for some test rides indeed. Specialized ebikes are all rated for a 300 lb rider and gear load, and I assume Giant and Trek are similar. There are many Trek stores that will rent you a bike for a day( and apply it to your purchase ) so you can ride the kind of terrain you hope to ride. Oh yeah welcome ... lots of over seventy year old riders on here, and lots different rides from mountains to flats, urban to backroads. Enjoy the hunt.
 

Deacon Blues

Well-Known Member
If possible, choose an ebike from a local bike shop. If something goes wrong with the bike it's nice having the dealer close by.

For your 30mi ride on flat terrain, most mid-drive ebikes with a 500W battery should be able to do the job.

I know this isn't the best of times to be testing bikes, but it's important that you ride the ebike before you buy it. Figures and stats on a page are one thing, but the real determiner is a butt-on-the-seat test ride.
 

AHicks

Well-Known Member
Region
USA
City
Snow Bird - Summer S.E. Michigan, Winter Gulf Coast North Central Fl.
I am looking to buy an electric bike and finding that it is very hard to find a bike based on specs. I first started reading to learn about E-Bikes and the technical side of E-Bikes. I am a road biker since 15 years and usually do about 30 miles flat riding. I can’t ride around my house since it is hilly and I’m 240 lbs and getting old. From my reading I concluded that I need a 500-750 Watt mid-drive with a 36-48 Volt 1000 wh battery to have the power and distance that I need with extra reserve for doing some hills. I have not found a single website that you can search based on motor and battery power. I have to open each model and look for the specs that they hide to find what I need. Can I get some recommendations if first the pecs I’m looking at make sense and what manufacturers I should consider. Is there a way to search based on specs rather than the BS talk about the moon and stars?

Get what you are saying, and I agree. I have not seen a searchable database with the data you are looking for either. Get where you are coming from too. I have a pretty good grip on what's going on after building a couple of bikes, then purchasing and modifying the heck out of an over the counter bike, and I'm STILL struggling just like you are regarding my next bike....

Same riding scenario as well. Bought a home smack dab in the middle of some big rolling coastal hills (didn't look nearly as intimidating from the window of my car) , surrounded by miles of bike trails on flatland. Pre ebike purchase, by time I got to a bike trail I'd be so wiped out I'd have to turn around to make it back home on what energy I had left!

I've been pro geared hub bike to this point, have a 1000w that can make about 35 miles pretty reliably. Found I needed that much power in these hills to top the bigger ones easily, and it's just kind of loafing along, using very little power on the flats.

What might attract me to a mid drive is the potential for a belt driven VRT hub - without spending a fortune. Fat tires are something I'd like to try too, in hopes of a better ride, narrowing the range of available bikes even further.

Currently studying the Evelo Aurora Limited pretty closely....

As I do all of my own work, NOT a fan of local bike shops.
 

Latitude

Well-Known Member
I didn’t ride my e-bike before I bought it, but I had done a LOT of online research and narrowed my choice down to a couple of models from Trek/Electra, where I knew there was a good local dealer. When I walked into the shop, I unexpectedly found a small frame Trek in the model I would most have preferred (bikes were rare by this time and I am 5’2”). I bought the bike, a much-needed low step-through. The Trek staff have been great! The only thing that has evolved for me is that I anticipated doing mostly pavement riding and am now enjoying getting off-road more and more (Today I was on a wooded, unused grassy track in our local Provincial Park for over 15 km; nearly half my ride). My bike was pretty good on moderate trails, but had no front suspension and in the rear, a spring seat post. I have added the Redshift ShockStop seat post and stem, and they have transformed my stiff Verve + 3 into a very well-sprung, comfortable trail rider without compromising the street capabilities and range. For me, best of both worlds. As fall approaches here in Canada, I will also change to some tires with more grip... likely Schwalbes. Can’t go wrong with them.
 

Jim Jim

New Member
Thank you everybody for very helpful information. Each gave me something to think of. I visited Fly Rides today in my hometown San Diego. First they listened to what I need before trying to sell me a bike. I liked the 2020 Gazelle Medeo T10+. they should be receiving a new shipment soon. I will try and decide.
 

Alaskan

Well-Known Member
Thank you everybody for very helpful information. Each gave me something to think of. I visited Fly Rides today in my hometown San Diego. First they listened to what I need before trying to sell me a bike. I liked the 2020 Gazelle Medeo T10+. they should be receiving a new shipment soon. I will try and decide.
When I bought my first ebike, almost three years ago, the bike I decided on was a Riese & Muller Nevo. At the time, looking around online, I could not find a full service Riese & Muller dealer in my area. I ended up buying my first ebike from San Diego Fly Rides. Since then I have purchased three Riese & Muller bikes from them.

Fly RIdes has a great team of sales and service people that have been with them for some time...always a good sign. They have provided the best possible service over the years. They are responsive, knowledgeable, professional, thorough and fun.

If you buy a bike from them you will be in good hands.
 

Art Deco

Well-Known Member
Region
USA
City
Selinsgrove
When I bought my first ebike, almost three years ago, the bike I decided on was a Riese & Muller Nevo. At the time, looking around online, I could not find a full service Riese & Muller dealer in my area. I ended up buying my first ebike from San Diego Fly Rides. Since then I have purchased three Riese & Muller bikes from them.

Fly RIdes has a great team of sales and service people that have been with them for some time...always a good sign. They have provided the best possible service over the years. They are responsive, knowledgeable, professional, thorough and fun.

If you buy a bike from them you will be in good hands.
An aside ... sometimes the dealer is more important than the bike.
 

AHicks

Well-Known Member
Region
USA
City
Snow Bird - Summer S.E. Michigan, Winter Gulf Coast North Central Fl.
An aside ... sometimes the dealer is more important than the bike.

I agree - but I'm darn shy of trusting dealers automatically when I walk in the door. The victim of aloof attitudes and pure unadulterated BS from too many of them here. Just the idea of them considering that I might believe what's spewing from their mouths is an insult sometimes too.

Maybe that sounds harsh, so I will admit there's 1 dealer I do trust. Small 1 man shop (immaculate!), and he takes groups out for local rides on a weekly basis. He's clearly in to what he's doing. I try to support him by buying any parts I need from him.

Point being, they're out there, but sometimes good ones are going to take a bit to find.
 

Art Deco

Well-Known Member
Region
USA
City
Selinsgrove
I agree - but I'm darn shy of trusting dealers automatically when I walk in the door. The victim of aloof attitudes and pure unadulterated BS from too many of them here. Just the idea of them considering that I might believe what's spewing from their mouths is an insult sometimes too.

Maybe that sounds harsh, so I will admit there's 1 dealer I do trust. Small 1 man shop (immaculate!), and he takes groups out for local rides on a weekly basis. He's clearly in to what he's doing. I try to support him by buying any parts I need from him.

Point being, they're out there, but sometimes good ones are going to take a bit to find.
"Trust but Verify" maybe...
 
Thank you everybody for very helpful information. Each gave me something to think of. I visited Fly Rides today in my hometown San Diego. First they listened to what I need before trying to sell me a bike. I liked the 2020 Gazelle Medeo T10+. they should be receiving a new shipment soon. I will try and decide.

Sounds like you're on the right track. Any time I'm buying a thing that requires a dealer or is a big-ticket item, my policy is to walk in and walk out without buying anything at least once. Walk in prepared, listen to what they say, take any brochures they offer. Then go home, do your own research, compare and contrast what they told you and what you find out. Call them and ask about discrepancies...etc.

An honest dealer can be hard to find, but you always know when you've found it.
 

Dallant

Well-Known Member
Test rode an Allant+7 after finding the only one I could ride about an hour from me in a larger city. Being a local shop supporter, I did end up ordering it from my local guy. I am very happy with the bike but less so with the shop I bought it from as he is very difficult to deal with when I need or want his assistance. At times his attitude is like I’m intruding when there’s hardly anyone there. He’s clearly the one man band and his ‘techs’ know nothing about sales/ordering. That said, he knows his stuff and when I can get his attention, he’s sound technically (though I’ve taught him a few things, like the recent Bosch update which he knew nothing about) and straight forward about it when he doesn’t know and has to do research for an answer.
All in all, I’m glad I have a local Trek resource but really wish he carried more inventory.
I cannot imaging buying anything as pricey online without test riding it first!🧐
 

Alaskan

Well-Known Member
Test rode an Allant+7 after finding the only one I could ride about an hour from me in a larger city. Being a local shop supporter, I did end up ordering it from my local guy. I am very happy with the bike but less so with the shop I bought it from as he is very difficult to deal with when I need or want his assistance. At times his attitude is like I’m intruding when there’s hardly anyone there. He’s clearly the one man band and his ‘techs’ know nothing about sales/ordering. That said, he knows his stuff and when I can get his attention, he’s sound technically (though I’ve taught him a few things, like the recent Bosch update which he knew nothing about) and straight forward about it when he doesn’t know and has to do research for an answer.
All in all, I’m glad I have a local Trek resource but really wish he carried more inventory.
I cannot imaging buying anything as pricey online without test riding it first!🧐

That sounds clearly less than ideal but better than an 800 number with phone support only and maybe getting a part shipped to you. Then having to do it yourself or find and pay a shop willing to do the repair for you.
 

WattsUpDude

Well-Known Member
When I bought my first ebike, almost three years ago, the bike I decided on was a Riese & Muller Nevo. At the time, looking around online, I could not find a full service Riese & Muller dealer in my area. I ended up buying my first ebike from San Diego Fly Rides. Since then I have purchased three Riese & Muller bikes from them.

Fly RIdes has a great team of sales and service people that have been with them for some time...always a good sign. They have provided the best possible service over the years. They are responsive, knowledgeable, professional, thorough and fun.

If you buy a bike from them you will be in good hands.

And they make some of the better eBike videos on youtube. They seem very approachable and enthusiastic about the products they are selling.