I am thinking of an ebike

dhs1963

New Member
I used to bike everywhere; in my mid to late 20's (while in grad school), I did not even have other transportation. I never had a particularly good bike, and typically limited myself to 10 miles from home.

Fast forward 30 years: I still like biking, but my body is not in shape. I have survived cancer, and while fighting it, I let things go to pot. In the mean time, my genes -- relating to heart disease -- have resulted in the inevitable. Luckily, medical science has progressed, and things were caught before a heart attack, but I have multiple cardiac stents. I can not ride up a hill without problems. As such, I really stopped anything more than walking when I was got the cancer (5 years ago).

From what I can tell, a pedelec bike might be a way from getting more exercise facilitating me getting in better shape (my doctors endorse more exercise).

I live 1/4th of a mile from a very nice bike path (W O & D in Northern VA), and (in theory) could commute 10 miles to work on a series of paths.

So, what I am thinking in the under 4K price point (lower is much better), is the Trek XM 700+. I like the palace of the bike -- it handles properly. I like the range and the quality. I do not want one where the motor is in the back or the battery is up high: it impacts the handling too much. And I like the comfort factor for a longer trip.

I am wondering if there are any other bikes I should look at? And will using this help me get back in shape?
 
D

Deleted member 803

Guest
While you say no rear hub, I strongly suggest you look at the Pacer from SmartMotion. 28pmh speed pedelec, huge battery , very well balanced, and less money.
 

Saratoga Dave

Well-Known Member
And if you ride anywhere with a lot of starting and stopping - suburban intersections, crossing highways at lights - the throttle on most rear hub drives is a big deal. It's the only time I ever use the throttle, but I use it in those situations virtually all the time to get going. Only a second or two on it, but it makes that initial takeoff so much more pleasant. Also great guard against the chain broken or stuck in the frame scenario ten miles from home. You can always get home or to the bike shop on the throttle in that sort of "emergency".

Either way, the ebike would be a great idea for you (from a 66 year old with my own heart issues, unfortunately. 30 miles this morning though and loved every minute of it!)
 

dhs1963

New Member
And if you ride anywhere with a lot of starting and stopping - suburban intersections, crossing highways at lights - the throttle on most rear hub drives is a big deal. It's the only time I ever use the throttle, but I use it in those situations virtually all the time to get going. Only a second or two on it, but it makes that initial takeoff so much more pleasant. Also great guard against the chain broken or stuck in the frame scenario ten miles from home. You can always get home or to the bike shop on the throttle in that sort of "emergency".

Either way, the ebike would be a great idea for you (from a 66 year old with my own heart issues, unfortunately. 30 miles this morning though and loved every minute of it!)
I had not thought about that problem (broken chain). Something to think of...
 

Shoestring

Active Member
dhs1963, with $4K to work with, you have a lot of options. The trek XM700+ would be a good choice. I rode one last fall at the ebike expo in Tyson corners. I also know for a fact there is a lot of support for the trek bikes in DC, Northern Va, and the MD suburbs. That alone would tip the scales in my opinion. Local ebike dealers are hard to come by in the mid -atlantic region, having more then one within 25miles is pretty lucky. I'd say ride one if you haven't already, and get one that fits! Also, although a broken chain can happen, I've never broken one in 10,000+miles. Try not to let "dooms day" scenarios stop you from moving ahead. A new ebike will change your life.
 

harryS

Well-Known Member
Yes, you can get good exercise on an ebike. Keep the pedal assist low enough so you feel you're working. I lost about 20 pounds because I got more seat time on my bikes after we bought ebikes in July 2015. My cardiologist didn't even notice. Bummer.

You have to ride like an animal to bust a chain. It's not going to happen to the casual recreational rider or low speed commuter.

Do consider the throttle/pedal assist combo. Sure, motor cuts out at 20 mph, but in reality, do you really need the higher speed, If you ride a speed pedelec to work at 25 mph, no one will like you. Your coworkers will note that you're covered in seat. Your companions on the bike path won't like someone zooming past at speed.

We have a couple of rear hub motor bikes and they meet all our needs, but I have a mid drive kit too and like it. I feel it maximizes the motor's power by using the bike's derailleur, and minimizes the weight penalty.

With $4K, my opinion is that you should be able to get a $400 bike rack to carry 2 bikes, a $200 hitch from U-haul, $600 worth of golf stuff, and a nice mid drive ebike with a Bosch/Yamaha motor. if you dicker with the shop.
 

Bicyclista

Active Member
There is nothing wrong with a Trek XM 700+. I test rode one and liked it very much. A throttle would be nice but not absolutely necessary. With no throttle, I usually beat cars starting up after a stop at a red light on my Haibike mountain bike. It's a question of attentiveness and reflexes. But people are different and YMMV.
 

dhs1963

New Member
dhs1963, with $4K to work with, you have a lot of options. The trek XM700+ would be a good choice. I rode one last fall at the ebike expo in Tyson corners. I also know for a fact there is a lot of support for the trek bikes in DC, Northern Va, and the MD suburbs. That alone would tip the scales in my opinion. Local ebike dealers are hard to come by in the mid -atlantic region, having more then one within 25miles is pretty lucky. I'd say ride one if you haven't already, and get one that fits! Also, although a broken chain can happen, I've never broken one in 10,000+miles. Try not to let "dooms day" scenarios stop you from moving ahead. A new ebike will change your life.

One of the reasons why I am considering a Trek is there is a dealer for that about 1 mile from my house. I guess a question to ask them is how do they handle electric repairs -- can they do anything in house, or does it go out. (I assume the bicycle components are NBD).
 

dhs1963

New Member
Yes, you can get good exercise on an ebike. Keep the pedal assist low enough so you feel you're working. I lost about 20 pounds because I got more seat time on my bikes after we bought ebikes in July 2015. My cardiologist didn't even notice. Bummer.

You have to ride like an animal to bust a chain. It's not going to happen to the casual recreational rider or low speed commuter.

Do consider the throttle/pedal assist combo. Sure, motor cuts out at 20 mph, but in reality, do you really need the higher speed, If you ride a speed pedelec to work at 25 mph, no one will like you. Your coworkers will note that you're covered in seat. Your companions on the bike path won't like someone zooming past at speed.

We have a couple of rear hub motor bikes and they meet all our needs, but I have a mid drive kit too and like it. I feel it maximizes the motor's power by using the bike's derailleur, and minimizes the weight penalty.

With $4K, my opinion is that you should be able to get a $400 bike rack to carry 2 bikes, a $200 hitch from U-haul, $600 worth of golf stuff, and a nice mid drive ebike with a Bosch/Yamaha motor. if you dicker with the shop.

I am thinking if I could average 16-18 mph, the 10 mile commute would be doable. It currently takes be between 25 and 50 minutes by car, so 35 min would be fine. I would not be very sweaty (and would have a clean shirt at work).
 

Saratoga Dave

Well-Known Member
The pending Trek Super Commuter looks terrific to me, mid drive and all. Not cheap, but likely worth it. They keep saying "Spring" arrival, and things are starting to look pretty green around here, so maybe soon!
 

dhs1963

New Member
The pending Trek Super Commuter looks terrific to me, mid drive and all. Not cheap, but likely worth it. They keep saying "Spring" arrival, and things are starting to look pretty green around here, so maybe soon!
At 5K, it is a little pricey for me. Nice specs thoough...
 

dhs1963

New Member
So, I had the chance to ride a bunch of the E-bikes, mostly rear hub bikes. What impressed me is they felt reasonably balanced. Different from when I rode one 8 years ago. But, the bikes at this shop did not feel particularly robust. They were a bit cheaper than the TREK, and they felt it.

As I rode the bike, they felt fundamentally different than a human-powered bike. I would pedel, and feel the motor kick in and take over. Or I could use the throttle (if I wanted a motorcycle, I would buy one). The rides were not satisfying.

I then went and tried the FX700 again...What struck me was that it felt really tight -- well made. And other than a slight sound, I could not tell that it was assisted. Well, except for the fact that it always felt like I was on flat ground with a tailwind.

I am sure other bikes with comparable technology (e.g.., Bulls) would be fine. But, I live 3/4th of a mile from the TREK dealer....
 

Thomas Jaszewski

Well-Known Member
You could always convert a Trek. I'm adding a new Mac motor today. I did a very simply conversion on a Trek Pure. While not everyone 's cuppa, its a flat foot frame and the front drive is very quick and easy. Contrary to current wisdom, it actually rides quite nice. A budget build thats quite satisfying. A quick and dirty way in. It started my progressive illness with eBikes.
 

lark

New Member
And if you ride anywhere with a lot of starting and stopping - suburban intersections, crossing highways at lights - the throttle on most rear hub drives is a big deal. It's the only time I ever use the throttle, but I use it in those situations virtually all the time to get going. Only a second or two on it, but it makes that initial takeoff so much more pleasant. Also great guard against the chain broken or stuck in the frame scenario ten miles from home. You can always get home or to the bike shop on the throttle in that sort of "emergency".

Either way, the ebike would be a great idea for you (from a 66 year old with my own heart issues, unfortunately. 30 miles this morning though and loved every minute of it!)

That's interesting. we are talking a bike with both pedal assist and a throttle, right? if you're using throttle the rear wheel turns without a chain? How is that? No easy way for me to view these bikes
 

Thomas Jaszewski

Well-Known Member
That's interesting. we are talking a bike with both pedal assist and a throttle, right? if you're using throttle the rear wheel turns without a chain? How is that? No easy way for me to view these bikes
Like any multispeed bike, or most, there is a freewheel sprocket. the rear wheel can have single gear or a cluster like a 7 or 10 speed. So just like a bike with out a motor when the rear wheel is moving the chain doesn't have to. With a motor or without.