Friends Don't Let Friends Ride E-Bikes

J.R.

Well-Known Member
I posted here on EBR, that prior to getting the ebike itch I thought ebikes were cheating. There's only one reason I could have thought that, EGO:mad: Hey look at what I can do... without any f'n motor... wimps:mad:

When I was doing research a year ago into ebikes, I ran across an article that did it's best to convince me not to purchase one. At that point I was already half way to getting an ebike. But I saved the link in my research folder and I often think about that article when I hear or read negative comments. The comments after the article are the most entertaining part!

Opinion: Friends Don't Let Friends Ride E-Bikes pinkbike.com

I have always thought the natural market for ebikes is the cycling community, where I live. Maybe not! Maybe it's the never cycled community or the haven't cycled since I was a kid, community. In reality it must be all three, for ebikes to make it in the US.

Which community do you come from? How did you come to be an e-biker?
 

Shea N Encinitas

Active Member
From Banana seat to BMX to MTN to Touring, City bikes, Cruisers, High end road bikes I've just about done it all. At one point maybe 5 years ago I was riding a cheap cruiser so often that I was able to blow past a good percentage of spandex clad logo wearing weekend warriors on my $300 single speed. A friend of mine pointed out that I would freakin fly on a road bike and so I gave it a go, and did make pace. Unfortunately I ultimately became involved in several accidents (none caused by me) and finally decided give up road biking or die (thin tires, weak brakes, etc). While I still have to deal with cars I now do so with much better traction and stopping power, even the ability to approach the speed of traffic in the middle of the share lanes rather than be pinched to the right.

E-biking gives me more options, the ability to control my heart rate, less inflammation and the ability to heal any troublesome areas while continuing to ride. When I get called a 'cheater' I like to say do I look out of shape to you? (21 inch thighs and 14 inch calves, 165 lb 5"10" frame). Fortunately that trend has started to fade and some of the local roadies have learned that I'm a great draft engine (especially when I have the doggie), but one that stops at signs and lights. -S

P.S. - Always run daylight flashers front and rear, bright colors and rear view mirror.. now if I could just carry a sidearm for those pesky drivers.
 

stevenast

Well-Known Member
Always run daylight flashers front and rear, bright colors and rear view mirror.. now if I could just carry a sidearm for those pesky drivers.
Wow! No way to follow that... :)

All I can say - I'm from the "used to ride a regular mountain bike" school. Now the hills look steeper than before. The Haibike lets me go on rides like I did years ago, and even more! It truly is bringing back the joy of my youth on a bike.
 

Marko

Active Member
I've been riding a bike since I was 4 or 5 and I always rode to school and have done my commutes with a bicycle. The motivation to by an ebike came from wanting assistance in fighting headwinds and snow. Other bikes I own are 7-speed city bike and a 21 speed tourer.
 

opimax

Well-Known Member
Having never been a natural athlete but like sports I got into ebike after my best friend passed away in our early 50s. Ilived in the same house for many years and no way to avoid the last .5 to to I mile of going up hill to get home , sometimes having to walk . He passed and I said life is short and I am doing this and bought the fastest best hill bike I could find , early Stromer. I avg 10mph w/stops no matter what. I got tired of the same routes and going the same direction to the wind, even a little meant a lot. Ebike a chane this!

I had ridden most of the way to Pitsburg from DC in 20 mile increments and even did the Katy trail across Mo for a week before owning an ebike . Look forward to more long trips w a motor now.
 

Brambor

Well-Known Member
I biked regularly before high school. Across the forest to the next town's swimming hole etc ... then I bike commuted to college...had a 10 year break and then bought 2 mountain bikes (Trek 950 and 930) and mountain biked for a while, then had a 10 (or so) year break and bought 2 hybrids, then came the ebikes and year afterwards fat bikes. I never cared what anyone else thinks. Instead I always focus on what new opportunities open up with a purchase of a specific tool (bike).

If I actually had to debate ebike detractors I would quote some selective paragraphs from Grant Petersen's :
Just Ride: A Radically Practical Guide to Riding Your Bike
about how riding your bike (only) isn't really best exercise anyway and then give some arguments about benefits of anaerobic vs aerobic workout. :)
 

JoePah

Well-Known Member
eBikes are dominated by Baby Boomers who don't want the pain, and have the money to buy a cheap bike with expensive elctronics for a few grand.

Emerging products usually start with the young and hip and move into mainstream.. Ebikes are starting with the hip replacement crowd, and may move down if the price is right...
 
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J.R.

Well-Known Member
Great stuff all! Winter weather commuting 2013/14 drove me to consider ebikes. We had many, many feet of snow that winter and I couldn't commute as often as I wanted. An ebike with studded tires was the answer, I commuted this past winter with record cold as much or more as any season on a standard bike. Just needed more watts than my old body could generate.
 

Mike Smith

Active Member
eBikes are dominated by Baby Boomers who don't want the pain, and have the money to buy a cheap bike with expensive elctronics for a few grand.

Emerging products usually start with the young and hip and move into mainstream.. Ebikes are starting with the hip replacement crowd, and may move down if the price is right...
Amen JoePah. Not many of us boomers are, going to be competing with the local Mt bike crowd for space on the single track paths. As for my wife and I we can now ride longer, further, and flatten hills which would have destroyed us on our old bikes and still get some good exercise and fresh air. We're just trying to enjoy biking and are not bothering anyone. I think he packs of lycra lizards who crowd the roads with no bike lanes are more of a problem and danger (to others and themselves) than any ebikers riding light trails designed just for hiking and biking. Those complaining about ebikes today will be riding them themselves in 20 or thirty years.
 

Aaron

New Member
I ride an ebike because it's the fastest way for me to get to work. Commuting isn't a game that I can cheat at; I have something I need to do and an ebike is the best way I've found to do it. Getting some exercise while I'm at is is nice too. The article linked here has a very north american view that bicycles are just for sport, but we would all be better off if people could start thinking of them like cars. Sure, some people race cars, but most people just want to get somewhere and use their cars as tools. An ebike is just a better tool than a regular bike if your goal is transportation, so as long as you can afford one then I don't think you need to make an excuse to use the best tool available.
 

Ann M.

Well-Known Member
Not sure who the author of that article surveyed @Aaron ; in a crowed city like Austin with mediocre mass transit we've seen quite an uptick in ebike buyers coming in specifically for transportation reasons, particularly when they have a one way commute under 10 miles. Yes, the majority of bikes are sold for pleasure or sport riding, but there are shifts happening. Even some of our recreational ebike riders have started adding 'bike days' to their transportation mix once they feel comfortable with the bike lanes, trails and their skill riding. I think a lot of it is a mindset of 'oh we can't do that' or 'its too much trouble carrying a lock & my charger'--the little fear monger that steps in. Most are pretty stoked at how easy the commute was after a couple of trys. Congrats to your positive focus!
 

Brambor

Well-Known Member
those are pretty messed up rules, some ok and some odd. Could be interesting if there was a huge contingency of ebikes in Toronto and they all rode in the car lane - I guess that might happen now - but that would seem to slow down traffic and get the attention of the electorate pretty fast. What seems to (at least from the picture in the article) to be spoiling the pot are those moped looking electric 'mopeds' WITH PEDALS as if you were ever going to pedal the heavy cow. This might anger some but I do think the presence of a throttle leads the development of ebikes more towards mopeds, with higher speeds and away from bicycle looking bikes. This in turn will bring these mopeds into bike paths and bicycle lanes and those really don't mix well.
 

George S.

Well-Known Member
I was reading this:

https://electricfatbike.wordpress.c...ring-from-accidental-death-and-dismemberment/

a few minutes before the Toronto thing. (Posted by Shocke Bikes to FB). Doesn't make me want to romanticize ebikes. I'm building an ebike I hope will be pleasant around 18 mph, which is what our roads handle. I go faster on dedicated paths, though not much, and that may create some negative views of ebikes. My brother lives outside Boston and I think the B Path rules are motorized only if motor is disabled. He commutes by bike 10 miles and he is pretty much a purist on bikes. It's sticky, between the lycras and the high power faux-ebikers.
 

Marko

Active Member
Here mopeds are permitted on some bikelanes. The modern scooters are very quiet, like ebikes almost and you only notice them when they are already at your side. My fear scenario as a biker is doing an sudden side move at 20 km/h, e.g., to dodge a pothole, and at the same time a scooter is approaching 45 km/h 3 meters behind. So, now as an ebiker I sometimes choose to go to the right side of the car lane especially if I am doing speeds like 40-45, so I am not endangering slower bikers and partly because the car lane is smoother to ride (less bumps). What happens then is the drivers start making gestures for me to go to the bike lane. The cars' speed limit is 50 so I am not so much slower and I am riding on the side and not in front of the cars so they should be able to easily overtake me especially when ther are 3 or 2 lanes. But I guess according to the traffic law the drivers are right; bikers should be on the bike lane whenever there is one. Only on the Turbo I am not a biker, or am I.
 
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stevenast

Well-Known Member
I was reading this:

https://electricfatbike.wordpress.c...ring-from-accidental-death-and-dismemberment/

a few minutes before the Toronto thing. (Posted by Shocke Bikes to FB). Doesn't make me want to romanticize ebikes. I'm building an ebike I hope will be pleasant around 18 mph, which is what our roads handle. I go faster on dedicated paths, though not much, and that may create some negative views of ebikes. My brother lives outside Boston and I think the B Path rules are motorized only if motor is disabled. He commutes by bike 10 miles and he is pretty much a purist on bikes. It's sticky, between the lycras and the high power faux-ebikers.
This quote is from your link: "assume everyone behind the wheel is trying to kill you".

The rare times I'm on the street, that's exactly the way I ride, because I know they're looking at their cell phone even if they're not actively targeting me.

All the more reason not to force bikers to ride on the road, and instead allow them use of paths, and in return our responsibility is to ride safely and be courteous to pedestrians and other bicyclists.
 

Cnugget

Active Member
It's been a dozen years since I spent any real time on a bike.. Did some bike touring in the teens. New eBike user for just over 3 weeks now and LOVE it!! I was looking for a way to get to work, avoid traffic & get some exercise. I think sitting in a car driving to work, in or out of traffic is a waste of time / money / patience that could be used for better things. I considered biking biking but with the hills round here, I wasn't so sure I'd make it to AND from work. I am on the bike way more now than expected.. and it's faster than the bus. It's just plain fun and I can choose how much or little I work out unless of course the battery runs out :p. Because it's easy, I brave the commute more often than not. I'm a hiker/walker, so it's all a little ironic.. Usually the less motor the better but most things have a time and a place. Now I have dreams of ebike camping not car camping. Maybe I'm the old lady in the article, just ahead of my time. :D
 

MLB

Well-Known Member
Long time cyclist that used to poo poo E assist as for "old" people only. There is that, but for many of us that still ride unassisted bikes, it's going faster (nice cooling breezes!) and further while still working hard enough to qualify as a real workout. (heart monitor verified).
Mostly it's just too too much FUN!!