Ebike Reccomendations for Towing

Pete12

New Member
Hi,

Does anyone have experience towing with an ebike? Please share what you have learned! I appreciate this site, but the more I read the less certain I am about how to proceed with a purchase decision.

My situation:

225 pound oldish guy sometimes pulling 90 pounds of dog & trailer - but not always.

I like speed pedelec, I like long range - like 40 miles, I like durability. Who doesn't like those things?!

Moderate hills from time to time, usually paved, gravel trails once in a while.

$3k is more than I want to pay, but might if it's well justified - like I get everything I want ;-)

Main questions:

1. Is one drive system preferred in this scenario?
2. Battery preferences
3. Maybe I'm better off with a mid-drive kit built to my needs? - would my SRAM dual drive be able to take the strain?

Thanks for your consideration and responses.
 

Alex M

Well-Known Member
I'll be watching this thread. You like pedelec, but I'm afraid that for towing on a hilly terrain you'll like a throttle better. When going uphill, you will feel every single pound of those 90 lbs (and your own weight too).
 

Marc V

Member
Hey Pete12:

I am curious to see what you end up getting as well as if it hits all your needs! I switched from an EZ pedaler X350 to a Juiced ODK U500 V3 for different reasons, but from my initial research the ODK is pretty durable and versatile. I just got it over the weekend so I don't have much personal experience with it in different situations but I did read this couple's experiences with the ODK U500 and they look to be hauling passengers as well as cargo!

Pretty interesting read if you want to read the whole thing as they go into their experiences trying to get by without a car and using a few different vehicles to try and replace their car :)

http://www.frugalhappy.org/blog/2016/6/20/carfree-experiment-our-new-fleet

Here are pics from their webpage to give you an example of what they're hauling 1466445415596.png 1466445507938.png 1466445566064.png (Not my personal pics)

Not sure if they are part of this forum community otherwise I would tag them and thank them as their info helped me get mine and so far am happy with my purchase!
 

Pete12

New Member
I posed my question to Lunacycle and got the following reply. The link shows the hardware, but also there are several video links under the Description tab and a really interesting link under the Review tab:

"Hello Peter. Yes a mid-drive is more effective but it is not necessarily more cost-effective. You might be more suited for the double torque motor but this would require that you do not have a suspension fork… And ideally that you be using a torque arm on both sides.
https://lunacycle.com/double-gear-double-torque-motor/

Without a doubt the best option is the BBSHD but it is also the most expensive. As far as geared hubs go the double torque is the best option since it allows you to double the amount of reduction with a simple setting on the display."

It's got me interested... Your thoughts? I'll post here if I pull the trigger and how it turns out - or if I choose some other set up I'll post about that... But this looks promising.
 
My $.02, I'd go with the Bafang mid-drive. I put one on a Diamondback Overdrive Sport with a Nu Vinci CVT, and two batteries. My trailer is a hand made, single wheel design on which I have 150 watts of solar panels and a Genasun charge controller that charges lithium ion directly. I can charge one battery while I run on the other, which gives me almost unlimited range. I wear out before the batteries do! I have towed approx. 60 lbs in it and have gone up some very impressive hills. Without the trailer, the Bafang will propel my 220lbs up a 20% grade with no pedaling and maintain 6-8 mph. With the trailer I am limited to about 12% grades, which is still quit steep. On the flats I can pull the trailer at a steady 20mph no problem.
upload_2017-3-8_5-49-39.png
 

Teresa

Member
I tow a lot. I have a Felt NinerE which is a mid drive and I use it for bike packing all the time with a trailer and a pup whose about 45 lbs. I have two batteries and can get 65+ miles out of them in the day with a fully loaded kit and a lot of hills (I'm in NM and nothing is flat). For in town, the pup rides in a double wheeled children's cart and it works for well for me. I had a front wheel drive kit before this with a throttle and that worked as well but not as efficiently. I like the assist better and I like that I can modulate the assistance. Good luck in your choice.
 

Marc V

Member
My $.02, I'd go with the Bafang mid-drive. I put one on a Diamondback Overdrive Sport with a Nu Vinci CVT, and two batteries. My trailer is a hand made, single wheel design on which I have 150 watts of solar panels and a Genasun charge controller that charges lithium ion directly. I can charge one battery while I run on the other, which gives me almost unlimited range. I wear out before the batteries do! I have towed approx. 60 lbs in it and have gone up some very impressive hills. Without the trailer, the Bafang will propel my 220lbs up a 20% grade with no pedaling and maintain 6-8 mph. With the trailer I am limited to about 12% grades, which is still quit steep. On the flats I can pull the trailer at a steady 20mph no problem.
View attachment 15639
Thats a sweet setup!
 

JoshG

New Member
I I have two batteries and can get 65+ miles out of them in the day with a fully loaded kit and a lot of hills (I'm in NM and nothing is flat)./QUOTE]

Are you getting 65+ on each? Or all together?

What type of batteries?

I want that type of range. All I do is ride by myself on mostly flat areas and I haven't got anything near 65+... but to be fair I don't drain it all the way down. (And I really like to open it up on the straightaways).
 
I've been towing this 300 +- pound homemade trailer for my business with my single speed (geared 46 x 18) for 6 months last year. No hills ha ha! I decided to go with an ebike to extend my range and to tackle some of the hills in my service area.

I just purchased the Voltbike Mariner and will be doing towing tests starting tomorrow. It is nominal 500 watts and peaks out at 850 watts.
 

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Teresa

Member
I get the 65 miles on the two together pretty easily. Granted, I'm moving slow and when climbing, the pup hops out and does his snuffling around and on down hills, he hops in and we fly as fast as the terrain will allow. Very different riding then if I'm in town and simply want to get to work or back. Speed kills range. Mostly bikepacking, I'm riding on my own unless climbing something steep and while we cover a lot of distance, you take the day to do it. Comparisons to in town, get where you want quickly probably aren't comparable enough to be worth while.
 

Teresa

Member
Oh yea, and having two carts: one with one wheel and one with two, I find it is easier to tow the single wheel. Less drag, it follows so well, etc. The pup prefers his in town cart better cause he can literally lounge in it and with two wheels it is much more stable stopping and starting which is important in traffic so we absolutely use that in town.
 

Marc V

Member
I've been towing this 300 +- pound homemade trailer for my business with my single speed (geared 46 x 18) for 6 months last year. No hills ha ha! I decided to go with an ebike to extend my range and to tackle some of the hills in my service area.

I just purchased the Voltbike Mariner and will be doing towing tests starting tomorrow. It is nominal 500 watts and peaks out at 850 watts.
I was looking at the Mariner as well but decided to go with the Juiced Bikes ODK U500 V3 instead. Let me know how it goes! Take care, ride safe! Marc V
 

Pete12

New Member
Teresa - can you comment on the efficiency difference you experienced between your front hub drive and your mid drive? Thanks!

Pete
 

Alex M

Well-Known Member
JoshG, it would be a rare bike that does 65+ miles on one battery if you are using either pedal assist or throttle at all times. There are some, with huge battery, big and heavy.
Expect roughly 0.8 mile per every 10 WH of battery. As said, this number drops quickly when you increase the speed.
 

Marc V

Member
Teresa - can you comment on the efficiency difference you experienced between your front hub drive and your mid drive? Thanks!

Pete
I'd be curious of this as well, I've only had real life experience with front hub eBikes :)