How big a market for step through?

Ebiker33

Active Member
We have the UC Pro step thru in the queue, absolutely.

Doing fat tire + step through is definitely harder than it looks. From the Sondors picture, they are obviating the stress problem by having a single continuous chassis. Funnily enough that's actually how RM does the cargo bikes too...(very similar load and roll characteristics). Sondors appears to have put in the $$ and time to build something custom that works. That is awesome.


Question - FS versus Fat Step thru ? :D Tell me more about that.
It's all about comfort, and what is more important, I think, that with really fat tires like the Sondors 26" X 4.9" if you put in the very best seat suspension seat post like the Kinekt, and the best gel seat, you are getting really close, but a full suspension is still safer for keeping the wheel planted on the ground. So I guess it depends on what type of riding you are going to do.
However after watching this video, this is a hard tail fatty doing jumps normally only a FS MTB would do, it makes me wonder.


Big tires give you stability and safety and some extra built in suspension, with your new ultra, driving bigger tires is not an issue, you might lose some run time comparatively but with the newer 52V it shouldn't be a huge issue. I think 52V are perfect for fat tire bikes, they need it.
 
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MarkF

Active Member
I only ride step through and will second the looks of the new Sondors ebike. Integrated battery on a step through is dream bike. Throttle is a must as well as 28 mph capability.
 

GypsyTreker

Well-Known Member
My wifes Dolphin Ecotric folder sold me. She does photography. Her needs? Not to get unbalanced in any way when carrying her d500 and long lens. I can see that group a part of your interest surge. Yeah I think there is reason to take that subset seriously.
 

Zachdds

New Member
One of my concerns with the step through of the ultimate commuter will be how the battery mount looks on the seat tube when not in use. I see it as a sleek looking round tube having a cheap plastic rectangle in the middle. I hope that it can be easily removed since for most of my riding I will only need the integrated battery.
 

byunbee

Well-Known Member
One of my concerns with the step through of the ultimate commuter will be how the battery mount looks on the seat tube when not in use. I see it as a sleek looking round tube having a cheap plastic rectangle in the middle. I hope that it can be easily removed since for most of my riding I will only need the integrated battery.
You can always get it with 2 integrated battery packs instead one 1 integrated and 1 external.
 

RAB63

New Member
The most concerns I've heard is the external battery potentially getting in the way of the step thru wondering whether it defeats the purpose. You may want to explore designing a step thru frame that can house a bigger integrated battery to alleviate the range issue.
I agree with this comment
 

RAB63

New Member
PushKat:

Large battery in the downtube with extra battery under the rear rack so you don’t lose functionality of the rack. Here is an example of the type of rear rack I am referring to:


Also, I think you should consider making all of your rear racks MIK compatible. Very popular in Europe and lots of nice MIK accessories coming to the U.S:


 

Audiotom

New Member
The most concerns I've heard is the external battery potentially getting in the way of the step thru wondering whether it defeats the purpose. You may want to explore designing a step thru frame that can house a bigger integrated battery to alleviate the range issue.
This

When ordering my new bike I didn’t want the battery obstructing access.
would love a more powerful battery in the frame.

WIth a step thru and electric bike - you are not out to set any speed records but to ride more
I haven’t road one yet but not having to get as aerodynamic - low on the bike - fighting a hard head wind is ideal


This is my first “girl” bike. (Excuse the term)
I wanted easy access, the ability to quickly put my feet down when stopping hard and better balance.
In addition, if I have something loaded on the back - I don’t want to have to lean it over hard to get off and on
 
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RAB63

New Member
PushKar:

Here is a picture of my step-through with large down tube. Put a large battery there, and a second battery under the rear rack. Then just add FS, Gates, modified Bafang, Rohloff, Drop Seat Post, MIK compatible rack, 3 inch tires, and all the other goodies you like to include.

while you are at it, come up with a way for my spell check to stop changing your name to Pushkat. 😎
 

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byunbee

Well-Known Member
PushKar:

Here is a picture of my step-through with large down tube. Put a large battery there, and a second battery under the rear rack. Then just add FS, Gates, modified Bafang, Rohloff, Drop Seat Post, MIK compatible rack, 3 inch tires, and all the other goodies you like to include.

while you are at it, come up with a way for my spell check to stop changing your name to Pushkat. 😎
The new UC Pro probably has a larger downtube than what you pictured. What are the battery specs for that bike?
 

Timpo

Well-Known Member
Everyone - I have been getting a LOT of requests lately for step-through frames. Literally 30-40% right now. When we started, we were doing may be 5% step throughs.

Are there any pointers / data for demand for step-through versus regular frame ?

Any pointers will be appreciated.
Multi-billion dollar corporations like Giant, Trek, Specialized have been investing heavily on step thru bikes.
They have power to do a proper market research, so that should tell you something.

Also.. I don't think you need to look around for data. 😁
Because the reality is, 30-40% of inquiries you have been getting are step thru, so that should tell you something. Your customers are looking for step thru.

Not trying to go off topic, but I have been seeing some people looking for a heavy duty cargo bike. (Tern, Volt Kodiak, RadWagon type)
There is no cargo bike with titanium frame, belt drive and Bafang Ultra.. just saying.
 
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pushkar

Well-Known Member
Not trying to go off topic, but I have been seeing some people looking for a heavy duty cargo bike. (Tern, Volt Kodiak, RadWagon type)
There is no cargo bike with titanium frame, belt drive and Bafang Ultra.. just saying.
There’s one- looks like the ti frames you posted a while ago- geometry is mine. It’s not a cost effective. Have to do it in aluminum- next year may be.
 

jaizon

Active Member
PushKar:

Here is a picture of my step-through with large down tube. Put a large battery there, and a second battery under the rear rack. Then just add FS, Gates, modified Bafang, Rohloff, Drop Seat Post, MIK compatible rack, 3 inch tires, and all the other goodies you like to include.

while you are at it, come up with a way for my spell check to stop changing your name to Pushkat. 😎
I'm sorry, which bike is this? Thank you.
 

RAB63

New Member
Multi-billion dollar corporations like Giant, Trek, Specialized have been investing heavily on step thru bikes.
They have power to do a proper market research, so that should tell you something.

Also.. I don't think you need to look around for data. 😁
Because the reality is, 30-40% of inquiries you have been getting are step thru, so that should tell you something. Your customers are looking for step thru.

Not trying to go off topic, but I have been seeing some people looking for a heavy duty cargo bike. (Tern, Volt Kodiak, RadWagon type)
There is no cargo bike with titanium frame, belt drive and Bafang Ultra.. just saying.
There is a reason why R&M has so many step through models on their site. WW can leverage off of their research and just do it better!!
 

e-boy

Well-Known Member
ThIs “Step-Thru” thread on EBR‘s “Help Choosing an Ebike“ forum has 49 thousand views , The second most on that forum :

 

ROCebike

Member
Hi Pushkar
Re ST designs, I recall readIng something that recommended them for city commuters with lots of stoplights. Much easier/safer to put both feet down waiting for a green. Given COVID-19 impact on public transit, a lot of folks are looking at bikes as the commuting alternative. No doubt you know this already. So maybe the ST demand is up for city riders. Bike share bikes probably gave more users the experience of ST.

I do think that Trek is onto something with their Stagger frames. It seems to meet the middle ground or offer something for the Girl Bike stigma. Still they wouldn’t have done a third frame style without researching.

re extra battery and ST, my wife rides a Pedego City Commuter ST. Granted it’s a rear hub but having the battery back there also has been an issue. If the bike is leaning while walking it or astride and stopped at a light, it just goes over. Her instinct is to try to hold it up using the handlebars. But with the ST Design, there’s no way to hold the frame With your legs and over it goes. So I’d try to minimize any extra rear weight with the ST design. Leave that for bags.

I like the idea of a ST for touring. Swinging a leg over panniers gets harder as we age. A ST with a center strand seems pragmatic for mounting and getting that first balance. But you give up some real estate for cross bar bags. Is it feasible to have an optional cross bar designed from stem to seat post? Sort of like those bars to help support a ST on a hanging car carrier. Perhaps when clicked into place after mounting, it can improve stiffness and provide other utility.

The new Dost Drop is A good value and comes with optional battery. Not close to your spec, but I think it’s a winner and will challenge RnM first time buyers. Friends have ordered both Dost styles and will receive them in August. I’ll report back on my impressions.

my 2 cents.
 

JPT

New Member
For those of us who are inseam challenged, this is a very relevant topic.


For data, check the occurence over time data for "step through," "mixtie," and other variations in Google search.


I agree with the prior comments on your personal increase in queries, e.g. aging ideal customer cohort, COVID, etc.

In addition, your brand awareness is growing, so you will also intersect more of that ideal customer's research.



RE: battery

I suggest an integrated downtube 21700 and a secondary 21700 pack in the mid station of an ST-ish mid-tail frame.

That enables high amp-hour capacity and good low central mass.

The mid station can be used for shopping and other cargo when you don't need the extra range.

Lots of "low barrier to entry" urban, trekking, touring, and expedition capabilities in that form factor.