Have I found the perfect fat bike for renting out on the beach? ( Is Belt Drive with a mid motor the answer ) Sobowo??? anyone heard of it?

Wookey Ideas

New Member
I have a beach resort, the criteria is

- fat tire
- very robust bike that will be very low maintenance
- powerful enough for the heaviest people in thick sand
- top speed of around 40km on the hard sand
- a frame that can adjust to fit the maximum variety of body types
- a range of 80Km
- idiot proof
- available on alibaba, ( Im in Mozambique so its cheapest and easiest to order straight from china)

after months of research I have found only 1 bike on alibaba that seems to fit my bill the Sobowo sf6

It has a bafang mid drive 750 or 1000w with belt drive and Sturmey Archer 3 speed geared hub, it a folding bike so I think it will have adjustment to fit most people

only problem is I can't find any real reviews on any of the bikes this company makes so Im reaching out for help please tell me that this is a real company and this bike is any good for me.

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JRA

Well-Known Member
What sticks out to me, I have many miles of beach type riding experience, is the BBSHD might be too powerful for the 3spd IGH. While it is a slog to get to the hard sand, where the best riding is, it can cause problems if people who you rent to don't understand that you have to gear down before you hit the softer sand and not try and plow through it in a big gear which will lead to stress on the drivetrain, especially when they start to shift and throttle to keep up momentum while getting mired down. In my experience you don't need any more than 500w to ride beach area, mostly level, terrain and the factory should be able to de-tune the system for that by adjusting the controller Amps to suit. 500w would be sufficient to get to 40kmh unless into a strong headwind.

There is more ground resistance on even hard sand than pavement and the fat tires add more to that. In order to go 80km you will need their 14ah battery and even then it might be iffy to get that distance riding a beach.
 

Wookey Ideas

New Member
Ya I thought the same about limiting the power going to the motor, but I was also wondering if the lowest gear will have enough torque to go slowly through thick sand with a big guy say 120kg. I would probably end up buying extra batteries to get the range I need especially in a head wind. but on paper this works right? I just wish there was a reveiw out there, the factory says 3-4 months lead time for manufacture and then 2 month for shipping we get to almost 6 months if i just order 1 to test and then I want to get more it's another 6 months, that's a year!
 

JRA

Well-Known Member
It doesn't specify the gear ratios on the website but in your favor is that it seems to have a smaller front chainring than usual for a 20" wheel bike. As you are dealing with a factory built bike it would seem that they would be able to work with you to fit your needs. For instance I still think the BBSHD is overkill for your needs and a BBSO2 with a 36v system running at 500w with as large a battery as they can stuff in there would work better and result in a lighter bike which will aid in performance.

Unless there are any reviews on where that CO advertises on Alibaba you won't find one I'm sure. If you can get ahold of a list of components then you can research the reliability of them and add it all up? It is encouraging that they specify using a Gates belt and known Sturmey Archer hub that are known entities, although I am still a bit reluctant about the hub although it makes sense in combo with the belt over a derailleur based system in a salt environment.

When you look at the math it seems a bit daunting eh? There is alot of good faith in trusting a company in a situation like this and the lead time to conclusion could be as you say. Good luck!
 

Wookey Ideas

New Member
Good news I had the idea to ask if they had any demo bike laying around and they have one with a slight defect on the fraim, and it had branding too so i googled it and found a us company and found more info, check out the videos if found below,

This makes me feel much better I'm going to go for this demo but i have asked for an extra battery. thanks JRA

 

vincent

Well-Known Member
Well the quietkat is a rip off, no belt or igh and very overpriced

looking forward to hearing how the sobowo does for you