Howdy from Newbie

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Deleted member 803

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Getting too old to ride a motorcycle so I decided to try an e-bike. Been looking for 2 months and have had a hard time getting concrete information from local dealers on the pros/cons of motor types, suspension types, and componentry.

After riding a Specialized Turbo S, Strommer St1, Eflow Nitro, iZip Dash, Kahlkoff Pro Connect, Focus Aventura S10, Haibike Enduro 29, Stealth Fighter, and about 8 others I was at a crossroads with regards to function and form. I love the new displays from Bosch Gen 2 and Impulse 2 but decided that display was a secondary consideration to fit and motor. I then test rode bikes looking solely at motors and while I clearly understand the differences between mid and hub motors, what I wanted was a speed pedelec that had significant torque. I then looked at frame geometry to suit my octogenarian physique and decided that I wanted a slightly forward lean for optimum core position. From there I looked at tires and suspension that were best suited to paved roads with an occasional trail. My second to last consideration was gearing and decided that 10 gears would suffice and anything more would be ok. Lastly, I wanted a bike I could sufficiently peddle if the battery died.

After much teeth gnashing and an occasional senior moment, I finally decided on a Easy Motion Neo Carbon. While a smaller output hub, the whole bike seems to work very well as a unit. The geared rear hub has significant torque and, believe it or not, was stronger (for me) on significant inclines than a 500W hub.

I plan on upgrading the shifters, adding a Topeak Rack, and an integrated light package with the Easy Motion lighting kit adaptor. I am going to put a deposit down on Monday to order from my not so local dealer.

Would someone like to change my mind? P.S. My second choice would be a Focus Aventura S10.
 

Vern

Active Member
Good Choice, I think you will love the Carbon. I looked and compared MANY bikes and struggled with my decision, but in the end I came to the same conclusion as you. The Neo Carbon is a great bike. I absolutely love mine and it has been trouble free!! I have to say that that Focus looks pretty sweet though!
 
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Ravi Kempaiah

Well-Known Member
After riding a Specialized Turbo S, Strommer St1, Eflow Nitro, iZip Dash, Kahlkoff Pro Connect, Focus Aventura S10,Haibike Enduro 29, Stealth Fighter, and about 8 others I was at a crossroads with regards to function and form. I love the new displays from Bosch Gen 2 and Impulse 2 but decided that display was a secondary consideration to fit and motor. I then test rode bikes looking solely at motors and while I clearly understand the differences between mid and hub motors, what I wanted was a speed pedelec that had significant torque. I then looked at frame geometry to suit my octogenarian physique and decided that I wanted a slightly forward lean for optimum core position. From there I looked at tires and suspension that were best suited to paved roads with an occasional trail. My second to last consideration was gearing and decided that 10 gears would suffice and anything more would be ok. Lastly, I wanted a bike I could sufficiently peddle if the battery died.

After much teeth gnashing and an occasional senior moment, I finally decided on a Easy Motion Neo Carbon. While a smaller output hub, the whole bike seems to work very well as a unit. The geared rear hub has significant torque and, believe it or not, was stronger (for me) on significant inclines than a 500W hub.

I plan on upgrading the shifters, adding a Topeak Rack, and an integrated light package with the Easy Motion lighting kit adaptor. I am going to put a deposit down on Monday to order from my not so local dealer.

Would someone like to change my mind? P.S. My second choice would be a Focus Aventura S10.

First of all,
86 and thinking of an Ebike. You're absolutely awesome. Way to go :).
I wish I get to live 86!!

You've clearly done your homework. This is how an informed customer has to make his decision. Excellent choices.
I have read a lot of positive reviews about the Focus Impulse 2.0 system and with its Magura MT2 hydraulic disc brakes, 17Ah massive battery, and an array of accessories like racks, fenders, lights, pump etc, it's a complete bike in itself.

I own a Neo-line bike and am very familiar with its setup but if I were you, I would go with Focus with 17ah battery and Impulse 2.0 system. It's a notch ahead compared to any of Neo bikes [at least in terms of componentry and geometry]

The sporty Torque of Neo bikes is addictive and is much less $$ compared to Focus. If you get a carbon and want to use it during rainy/winter season, you'll have to add a fender, rack etc and some Cygolite. Also, change the tires to Schwalbe Marathon Plus but Focus comes all of that + Schwalbe Energizer pro tires.

I'm very eager to test ride this Impulse 2.0 system and would you mind sharing the shop location where you test rode this Aventura with Impulse 2.0?
 
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Deleted member 803

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Unfortunately I live in an awful weather area.......as in NONE. Everyday is sunny and warm...............Monterey/Carmel......Test rode the bike at New Wheel in SF. A very small shop but dedicated to e-bikes with very nice people. My concern with Kahlkoff and Focus is that they have not really committed to US distribution in a big way. They have limited dealerships and limited inventory. Given the complexity of an e-bike, service that is local to me with strong national support is imperative. I realize this may change as the whole market is nascent.
 
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Deleted member 803

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I plan on upgrading a few things on the Neo Carbon before I take ownership. I will probably upgrade the shifters, add lighting, throw on a new set of speedplay pedals, and change the tires to Schwable Marathon supremes. I'm not concerned about battery life as it would be an achievement to take a ride as long or as arduous as is necessary to drain the battery.
 

Ravi Kempaiah

Well-Known Member
Unfortunately I live in an awful weather area.......as in NONE. Everyday is sunny and warm...............Monterey/Carmel......Test rode the bike at New Wheel in SF. A very small shop but dedicated to e-bikes with very nice people. My concern with Kahlkoff and Focus is that they have not really committed to US distribution in a big way. They have limited dealerships and limited inventory. Given the complexity of an e-bike, service that is local to me with strong national support is imperative. I realize this may change as the whole market is nascent.

Ah I see.
I follow Karen and Brett's blog, they are awesome people and probably the best e-bike shop in this country. Their comprehensive service membership is going to leave you with little to no worry.
Gathering from your informed post above, I would imagine you becoming more active on an ebike and it is very easy to go on 30-40 mile rides on an ebike. This Korean war veteran is going on a 2500 mile tour on his Neo Jet. So, having a better battery never hurts :)
 
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Deleted member 803

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New Wheel is 80-85 miles away from me and I really don't want to spend an entire day dropping off the bike, waiting for service, and then getting it home. The ideal bike for me would have a nuvinci automatic hub, a carbon frame with front shock, a gates belt drive, and a mid-drive motor with pedal assist to 28mph and an 812W battery. The Grace MX II Urban looks fantastic but unfortunately they are significantly behind other European vendors in their US distribution and support. E-Bikes are going to continue to improve so upgrading every 2 to 3 years will probably be the norm.
 

Vern

Active Member
Wow 86 and Still Kicking, you know your stuff and have become very informed about the ebike market. Your "ideal bike" sounds awesome and will probably be the norm in a few years. I hope that those of us in CA will not be restricted by legislation that limits pedal assist to 20mph. Enjoy your new bike up there in beautiful Monterey, but be careful not to scratch your Ferrari when you put your bike in the garage:).
 

ChrisD_

Member
Hi @86 and still kicking, I'm also cursed with awful weather here on the SF peninsula but at least I don't have your horrible views!

Big enough budget helps but I agree that regular upgrades (and selling hand-me-downs on Craigslist) will be my plan, too. I went with an IZIP Dash for the quality of its software and controls, and since learned to appreciate it's top speed. I don't think it's a great climber, but my commute is on pretty flat terrain, and folks here on the forum have reservations about its battery chemistry. I've had to work through a minor assembly defect, but my shop and the manufacturer have been great. I picked a bike shop based on proximity and availability of the bikes they stocked, and their integrity and willingness to work with me have validated my decision.

That said, repairs aren't necessarily one-day long in my experience. Once the shop diagnoses the problem, they will have to order the part from the factory. My shop did swap a battery from a demo bike in order to let me compare its operation to my own, but when I needed a new torque sensor (this was the assembly defect - the sensor had been loose and wore insulation from a couple of wires) they had to order it. Less than a week, but two trips to the shop.
 
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Deleted member 803

Guest
Wow 86 and Still Kicking, you know your stuff and have become very informed about the ebike market. Your "ideal bike" sounds awesome and will probably be the norm in a few years. I hope that those of us in CA will not be restricted by legislation that limits pedal assist to 20mph. Enjoy your new bike up there in beautiful Monterey, but be careful not to scratch your Ferrari when you put your bike in the garage:).

We are a modest family with relatively modest means. I drive a 1994 honda civic which serves me well. My wife however drives a new Bentley but thankfully keeps it in our country home in the Loire Valley.
 

Vern

Active Member
Just joking about the Ferrari comment. I was up there for vacation two years ago during the Concours d'Elegance for Italian cars. While leaving the city, I must have seen 100 Ferraris. It was pretty cool. I just assumed that everyone who lived up there had one:).
 

Mtnm

Active Member
Welcome to a great way to getting around.
Most people recommend a change in saddle. Hopefully your dealer can help fit you to a saddle. You may need to shop a dedicated bike shop (REI stores do a good job).
I purchased the Jumper, because I wanted full suspension.
Try riding awhile before changing derailleurs.

I hope you will report your experience going forward.
I'm considering the light harness, but there are a limited number of 6 volt D.C. lights available.
Drivers routinely misjudge how fast I am moving and pull out in front of me; I use two front white blinky style lights and think drivers see me but misjudge speed. It happens much more frequently than when I've ridden motorcycles.
It's actually not a big deal since the e-bikes allow us to get back up to speed.

Padded bike shorts are a good idea. The Pearl Izumi Attack work best for me. I do wear them under my jeans (and you do wear them without underwear).

Do go over removing the battery with the dealer. They can be tight. I often use a pair of plastic levers designed for fixing flat tires. If it is too tight the dealer should be able to adjust the fit.

Mike
Colorado
 
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Deleted member 803

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OK, so I have a problem. I rode the new Turbo S from Specialized. Just wonderful. No suspension though. I don't plan any off road travel, strictly city. I love the joystick controller as it acts as a throttle when needed. I am also a bug on crisp shifting so I want a premium transmission. I have an opportunity to buy a neo carbon at a very good price but it is a 13 model with smaller battery.

I need something that will get me up hills with little effort. I was initially emthralled by the Neo's yank off the line. I have ridden Bosch Gen 2 bikes and they seem gentler to me in their torque but supposedly a mid drive pulls harder up hill.

My brain hurts
 

Mtnm

Active Member
Specialized does it right, usually.
Make sure you read the review "link Turbo"
Are they actually available, or is it something which isn't going to show up for several months?

Mike
Colorado, USA
 

Ravi Kempaiah

Well-Known Member
OK, so I have a problem. I rode the new Turbo S from Specialized. Just wonderful. No suspension though. I don't plan any off road travel, strictly city. I love the joystick controller as it acts as a throttle when needed. I am also a bug on crisp shifting so I want a premium transmission. I have an opportunity to buy a neo carbon at a very good price but it is a 13 model with smaller battery.

I need something that will get me up hills with little effort. I was initially emthralled by the Neo's yank off the line. I have ridden Bosch Gen 2 bikes and they seem gentler to me in their torque but supposedly a mid drive pulls harder up hill.

My brain hurts

Are you getting the Specialized Turbo S or you just riding the wave of exuberance that comes when you're about the purchase a new Ebike? :)
 
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Deleted member 803

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I THINK.....(subject to changing moment to moment) of getting the new 2014 Neo Cross and upgrading the cassette, derailleurs, and shifters (XT), plus adding new
Schwalbe Marathon Plus tires. I will also add the lighting kit, front and rear SuperNova lights, a Topeak rack, and Speed Play pedals.

For around $3600 I get 90% of the Turbo S. Seems like a fair tradeoff.
 
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Deleted member 803

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OK, well today I decided not to pay the mortgage and ordered a 2014 Neo Cross from my local (and brand new Easy Motion) dealer. The bike will have the following mods applied before I pick it up:
  • Schwalbe Marathon Supreme Tires
  • 10 gear Shimano cassette (11)
  • Shimano (2 gear) front
  • XT derailleur system
  • XT Shifters
  • Shimano (top of the line) disc brakes
  • Wired Super Nova light front and rear
  • Topeak rack (I have a topeak bag)
  • Weird new seat that comes from a company that makes a wide variety of shapes to conform to my.....whatever
  • Speedplay pedals
  • Ergo grips with horns (or whatever those wings are called)
I debated long and hard considering a Focus Aventura Impulse S10, a 2013 Neo Carbon, a Turbo S, and a Strommer Elite.

I also ordered a Thule EasyFold 9032 rack designed to accommodate e-bikes (yikes its expensive)

.....As Niles Crane (of Frasier fame) used to say, "its all about the accessories"

Also, would it be ok if I added those plastic tassels to my handle bars that flip flop in the wind and a playing card attached to the rear wheel with a clothes pin???????? These were popular last time I bought a bike.
 

James

Well-Known Member
Also, would it be ok if I added those plastic tassels to my handle bars that flip flop in the wind and a playing card attached to the rear wheel with a clothes pin???????? These were popular last time I bought a bike.

Haha... Screw the mortgage! Have fun with the new bike, sounds like you've got it all set up.
I'd pass on the tassels, but definitely get the cards in your spokes!
 

MarcD

Active Member
Congrats 86! I m sure you'll love the bike and you've picked some really good upgrades. You'll find in assist mode you don't shift as often (at least I don't) as you do on a regular bike, but they will be noticeable when you turn assist off. The vertical ends on the grips are called "bar-ends", and on longer rides they make a huge difference, giving you multiple hand positions to prevent fatigue.

One accessory I would consider is a good mirror. A lot of people have had good success with the Mirrycle, and I can attest to it's ease of install and adjustability, but depending on your bar-ends it may or may not work. There are a ton of options out there, but for use on city streets I find a mirror a must-have.