Help choosing first Ebike!

pjt729

New Member
Region
USA
I have been researching for a couple months and I still can't decide. Would love some thoughts and opinions from posters here. I'm a big guy at 250 lbs so I want enough power. There aren't a ton of hills around me but to commute to work there is a hill that's about a half mile long that has a peak grade of 8%. I also live at the highest point in town that requires going up a fairly consistent 10-15% grade for nearly a quarter of a mile to get home. Maybe this wouldn't be as big of a deal if I could have some speed heading into the hill but it requires stopping at a stop sign and then crossing the street going right into the hill which allows basically no speed pickup before getting into the hill A couple other notes, I have torn my ACL and dislocated my kneecap which leads to problems on how much force I can apply while pedaling. As much as I love the sound of the fluid power given by torque sensors, I'm not sure that would work for me.

Budget could be stretched to $3,000 if absolutely necessary but I would like to keep it in the $2,000-2,500 range (or less) if possible.

Now onto the bikes I've looked at. Let me know if I'm wrong in my descriptions and add any suggestions.

Surface 604

There is a dealer about 10 miles from me so I won't have to worry about finding a bike shop that will work on a bike which is great. The downsides are the bikes only get 65 nm of torque and peak at 750 watts as well as a torque sensor.

Sondors MXS

Very affordable. Seems like decent components. 80 nm of torque and 1,000 watt peak motor seems like it should get me up the hills? Don't really like the battery box but that's just cosmetic and I'd get over it.

Dost Kope

Top of the budget. Have to wait until at least April to get it. The positives are the warranty and definitely having enough torque and power to get me up the hill. Still a new company though which kind of makes me nervous but Court having experience and trust with them makes me feel better about possibly going with them.

Ride1Up 700

Was strongly considering this one but I don't think there's enough torque or power.

I am open to any and all opinions and suggestions!

I attached a few pictures of the steepest hill below at the beginning, middle and end of the hill.

Screenshot 2020-12-28 at 5.11.14 PM.pngScreenshot 2020-12-28 at 5.18.34 PM.pngScreenshot 2020-12-28 at 5.19.54 PM.png
 
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Timpo

Well-Known Member
Did you say you want a torque sensor?
I don't think DOST has torque sensor.

And if you care about torque BBSHD or Ultra are better.

BBSHD

Ultra

If you like hub drive, GMAC motor is good too.
(price is in Canadian)
 

pjt729

New Member
Region
USA
Did you say you want a torque sensor?

I'm open to everything I just don't know if I can with a torque sensor because of my knee. I can lightly spin the pedals just fine and that's good for my knee but when I get to hills how hard am I going to have to push on the pedals to get the necessary power? That's my problem. If it's a moderate amount to get full power on PAS 5 then it's probably fine but if I have to bear down hard on the pedals to get the full power then I probably need a cadence sensor.
 

Timpo

Well-Known Member
I'm open to everything I just don't know if I can with a torque sensor because of my knee. I can lightly spin the pedals just fine and that's good for my knee but when I get to hills how hard am I going to have to push on the pedals to get the necessary power? That's my problem. If it's a moderate amount to get full power on PAS 5 then it's probably fine but if I have to bear down hard on the pedals to get the full power then I probably need a cadence sensor.
So a bike with torque sensor and throttle?

You can climb uphill with torque sensor, and if your knee starts to hurt, use the throttle to ease the pressure?
 

reed scott

Well-Known Member
I'm open to everything I just don't know if I can with a torque sensor because of my knee. I can lightly spin the pedals just fine and that's good for my knee but when I get to hills how hard am I going to have to push on the pedals to get the necessary power? That's my problem. If it's a moderate amount to get full power on PAS 5 then it's probably fine but if I have to bear down hard on the pedals to get the full power then I probably need a cadence sensor.
With your knee you absolutely need a throttle. And a Bafang motor. The only company given those parameters that I believe in is Biktrix. The owner is Roshan and he's on here a lot. He makes a great product and he stands behind it. 👍

AND he is established. Biktrix is no longer a startup. They are leaders in the ebike direct sales market.

I keep seeing more to reply to in your post. With good gearing and torque sensing ... given a strong motor (Bafang ) you don't have to ever pedal hard if you don't want to.
 
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Marci jo

Well-Known Member
pjt729, have you had a chance to test ride any ebike? Even if you are not considering that specific brand, it will help narrow down the selection.
Depending where you live, is renting a bike for a few days an option?
You came to a good place, many good suggestions on this forum.
 

reed scott

Well-Known Member
I have been researching for a couple months and I still can't decide. Would love some thoughts and opinions from posters here. I'm a big guy at 250 lbs so I want enough power. There aren't a ton of hills around me but to commute to work there is a hill that's about a half mile long that has a peak grade of 8%. I also live at the highest point in town that requires going up a fairly consistent 10-15% grade for nearly a quarter of a mile to get home. Maybe this wouldn't be as big of a deal if I could have some speed heading into the hill but it requires stopping at a stop sign and then crossing the street going right into the hill which allows basically no speed pickup before getting into the hill A couple other notes, I have torn my ACL and dislocated my kneecap which leads to problems on how much force I can apply while pedaling. As much as I love the sound of the fluid power given by torque sensors, I'm not sure that would work for me.

Budget could be stretched to $3,000 if absolutely necessary but I would like to keep it in the $2,000-2,500 range (or less) if possible.

Now onto the bikes I've looked at. Let me know if I'm wrong in my descriptions and add any suggestions.

Surface 604

There is a dealer about 10 miles from me so I won't have to worry about finding a bike shop that will work on a bike which is great. The downsides are the bikes only get 65 nm of torque and peak at 750 watts as well as a torque sensor.

Sondors MXS

Very affordable. Seems like decent components. 80 nm of torque and 1,000 watt peak motor seems like it should get me up the hills? Don't really like the battery box but that's just cosmetic and I'd get over it.

Dost Kope

Top of the budget. Have to wait until at least April to get it. The positives are the warranty and definitely having enough torque and power to get me up the hill. Still a new company though which kind of makes me nervous but Court having experience and trust with them makes me feel better about possibly going with them.

Ride1Up 700

Was strongly considering this one but I don't think there's enough torque or power.

I am open to any and all opinions and suggestions!

I attached a few pictures of the steepest hill below at the beginning, middle and end of the hill.

View attachment 75327View attachment 75328View attachment 75329
Yeah hills don't show well in flat 2d pictures. My Ultra will pull 35 degree hills on throttle and be going too fast by the top.
 

pjt729

New Member
Region
USA
pjt729, have you had a chance to test ride any ebike? Even if you are not considering that specific brand, it will help narrow down the selection.
Depending where you live, is renting a bike for a few days an option?
You came to a good place, many good suggestions on this forum.

Not yet. I want to test the Surface 604 but it's winter here and the bike shop that sells them aren't renting them now and like I said, I'm not sure they have enough power anyways. I'll have to add Biktrix to the list to research as well.
 

reed scott

Well-Known Member
Not yet. I want to test the Surface 604 but it's winter here and they aren't renting and like I said, I'm not sure they have enough power anyways. I'll have to add Biktrix to the list to research as well.
timpo has a good suggestion above. The Lancer from Bolton Ebikes.
 

reed scott

Well-Known Member
Nuther thing about Biktrix. They have a chat feature on their site and you can get real help from a real person pretty fast. With tech expertise.
 

Sierratim

Well-Known Member
I personally would go with a setup that meets the US definition of a bicycle; less than 750W/1hp. Others disagree under the premise that they won't get caught but with the performance you can get with a bike like the DOST KOPE, why bother.

Just my $0.02 worth.
 

AHicks

Well-Known Member
Region
USA
City
Snow Bird - Summer S.E. Michigan, Winter Gulf Coast North Central Fl.
There are a few manf's that are selling Ultra powered bikes with a 750w rating. Granted, most of us that have checked them out seriously have found they are commonly rated much higher. So there's that.

Big guy here too (6'2"/315). I say go for the biggest motor you can find. It's way easier to throttle back because you have too much than it is to get off and walk the bike up because you don't have enough.

Ultra is a good plan, and a manf. you don't hear about as much, is Rize. If you get serious about an Ultra hard tail, they're a lot of bike working on a bucks spent for bang received concept (e.g. the size of the standard battery).

As far as your knee and a challenging hill with Ultra powered torque sensing bike, it will have no trouble with your hill, and you can control the amount of effort that's reqiuired on your part to climb it with the PAS level you choose. Just keep in mind the battery range is not a bottomless pit when using big power, and not using any more than necessary is a good plan....
 

pjt729

New Member
Region
USA
Thank you for all the replies! Based on what you guys are saying, should I just eliminate the hub motor bikes I was looking at or is there a possibility I could get up hills with them?
 

Kodak

New Member
Region
USA
City
NYC
It looks like you did your homework with options to purchase. As I am sure you have seen some negative comments about buying Ebikes online. The issue for me was, how important it is to have a shop maintain the bike for me or am I willing to get my hands dirty and tinker and learn enough to be able to keep the bike running without support from a shop. I took a chance with a bike made in China because that was my best price point option. I am the tinkering kind and love to solve problems and learn about the mechanics of the bike, so I went that route. I was lucky, the bike arrived with a large hole in the box, no damage was done to the bike. If you are not inclined to get deeply involved with your bike I recommend the nearest bike shop purchase. it will give you pease of mind and increase your enjoyment of your Ebike.
The motor and battery size are important but there are lots of issues to consider about peak power of all motors. I would suggest also that you go to the Bolton Bike You Tube Channel and watch his video on "

Considering the RadRover Ebike? You better watch this first!"

He will give you information about larger and smaller motors that you should see. I found Bulton Bikes after my purchase and would highly recommend them to you.

Good Luck you gonna have a great time.
 

reed scott

Well-Known Member
Thank you for all the replies! Based on what you guys are saying, should I just eliminate the hub motor bikes I was looking at or is there a possibility I could get up hills with them?
Don't know much about hub motor bikes but I don't want one. Ride a good mid drive and you won't care about hub drives any more most likely.
 

reed scott

Well-Known Member
There are a few manf's that are selling Ultra powered bikes with a 750w rating. Granted, most of us that have checked them out seriously have found they are commonly rated much higher. So there's that.

Big guy here too (6'2"/315). I say go for the biggest motor you can find. It's way easier to throttle back because you have too much than it is to get off and walk the bike up because you don't have enough.

Ultra is a good plan, and a manf. you don't hear about as much, is Rize. If you get serious about an Ultra hard tail, they're a lot of bike working on a bucks spent for bang received concept (e.g. the size of the standard battery).

As far as your knee and a challenging hill with Ultra powered torque sensing bike, it will have no trouble with your hill, and you can control the amount of effort that's reqiuired on your part to climb it with the PAS level you choose. Just keep in mind the battery range is not a bottomless pit when using big power, and not using any more than necessary is a good plan....
Ditto. Op is going to want 48 or 52 volt and 21 Amp hour.
 

pjt729

New Member
Region
USA
Don't know much about hub motor bikes but I don't want one. Ride a good mid drive and you won't care about hub drives any more most likely.

Just asking because all the replies seem to be for mid drives. I would love to support the fairly new local shop that sells Surface 604 bikes but I want to make sure it has enough power to get me up the hills. I guess it wouldn't be such a big deal if I had to walk it some of the way up the hill but if I'm spending $2,000+ I'd prefer not to do that.
 

Sierratim

Well-Known Member
Just asking because all the replies seem to be for mid drives. I would love to support the fairly new local shop that sells Surface 604 bikes but I want to make sure it has enough power to get me up the hills. I guess it wouldn't be such a big deal if I had to walk it some of the way up the hill but if I'm spending $2,000+ I'd prefer not to do that.
Test rides are the best way to go. Our LBS actually rents ebikes for the weekend for extended rides but an hour or two is free.

There are online calculators that can help estimate the climbing ability of various ebike setups. GRIN Tech's Motor Simulator is a popular one. Not all motors are available on any of the simulators but you can often select a motor that has been modeled in the simulator that is close to the torque and power of the one in the bike you want to model.

I've done this on several DIY ebike conversions with good results, i.e. actual performance was close to what the simulators predicted.
 

Kodak

New Member
Region
USA
City
NYC
I have a 750 watt hub motor with 48 volts 17 amp hr bat. I have to go up very steep hills in my neighborhood. I am 6ft 200 lbs. This bike screams going up hills. You should never have to walk your EBike unless your battery is dead.
 

Timpo

Well-Known Member
Just asking because all the replies seem to be for mid drives. I would love to support the fairly new local shop that sells Surface 604 bikes but I want to make sure it has enough power to get me up the hills. I guess it wouldn't be such a big deal if I had to walk it some of the way up the hill but if I'm spending $2,000+ I'd prefer not to do that.
If you're talking about Surface 604 Shred, it has Bafang G360 motor which is rated at 500W.

But Surface 604 installed 25A 12MOSFET controller, which makes it 1200W max. (or precisely speaking 1365W @ full charge) at least in theory.

So yes, it has pretty good hill climbing power. Also the G360 has 12:1 reduction ratio, and they advertise their internal gears able to withstand 100nm of torque.