Looking for my first eBike for commuting / taking on the train

Peter Schnebly

New Member
I am very new to this, looking for suggestions on an e-bike that could handle a daily commute of about 15 miles, and being put on the train every day as part of my commute.

I am 5'11'', about 235 lbs, and want something that will handle some gravel / hills if necessary, that I can buy for somewhere in the 1 - 2k range and will last awhile.

Any suggestions would be appreciated, thanks!

Peter S.
 

Peter Schnebly

New Member
Would a folding bike help or matter? What are the logistics of the train? Price should be fine.
A folding bike may help, but the train does have a bike rack, so it should not be an issue. I mainly want a bike that will be comfortable, one that I can get some exercise with when I feel like it and not when I don't, but will help me get to work and back as reliably as possible, for the price. I'm fine with buying used if I can get a better quality bike for the price I would pay if new, as long as it's in good condition.
 

pocomo

Active Member
For a 15 mile commute, with a rider who is looking to do some pedaling (rather than just riding the throttle) you could get by with a fairly small battery, which saves both money and weight. I'm far from an expert, but 8 to 10 amp-hours should give plenty of buffer.
 

George S.

Well-Known Member
I bought an under $2,000 ebike 18 months ago, and the choices were not very good. Today, there is an enormous range. Court (site owner) lists the affordable bikes. You can probably avoid fat bikes and cargo bikes, which are heavy. There are some high performance bikes, like the Voltbike Interceptor, some refined low power bikes, like the Genze, and some real value bikes like the EG bikes. You can get EG through @Crazy Lenny Ebikes and you can PM him. He has a lot of stuff and offers good prices. I'm leaving out a lot of bikes on Court's list.

If you like a bike, a regular bike, and want to put a motor on it, that can be quite simple and there are shops that do turnkey conversions.

If you can ride some ebikes, you might narrow it down. Rentals, where you spend some time with the bike, are a great option. A lot depends on things like hills, fitness levels, security if the bike is left, etc.
 

Peter Schnebly

New Member
Thanks for your responses - I'll try some rentals and see what I like. Probably a good idea to get a feel for the types of bikes out there. I am actually interested in the fat bikes, they seem like they would offer a more comfortable ride, and work well if I had to go off road at all - is it just the weight that would rule them out?
 
D

Deleted member 803

Guest
The first step is to find a dedicated (or almost) ebike shop and ride as many as you can. Seek out an experienced sales rep who can guide you through the maze. Most local shops probably know someone who is selling a bike. A used ebike in good shape allows you to get more bang for the dollar and if the bike has been maintained by the local bike shop you will get an understanding of any service that may have been performed. Fat bikes are not necessarily better for off road. If you do not mind weight then perhaps a mountain ebike will suit you or perhaps a hybrid hard tail that has front shocks.

The key is to ride as many as you can. Comfort means different things to different folks. Find a bike that fits you and your riding style. You can tell pretty quickly once you get on something as to whether it has the right geometry for you.

Lastly, as stated previously, adding a quality kit such as the Bionx D500 to an existing bike will get you a sophisticated system that will not only last you for years, but can be moved from bike to bike.
 

Ann M.

Well-Known Member
Do lots of test rides, Peter! Fat bike tires don't fit into the typical racks for buses or trains or most car racks for that matter. It will be a cushy ride; however, so will an Interceptor or Izip Zuma and many others with a little wider tire profile, but not so wide that it makes it difficult to dual commute. If you are interested in a full size folding bike (something with 26" wheels) maybe look at the Prodeco Tech Phantom X2, a hybrid style ebike that also fits in your price bracket. Dig through Court's reviews - there are a lot of options; however, think about where you can get adequate service too. Having access to a good local shop for maintenance will keep you commuting longer.

One observation as a long time ebike dealer: most folks when they put a fixed number on their range often find that once they start riding an ebike, they want to ride more and further, so don't get the tiniest battery just to minimize weight. Have some fun with the search!
 

Steve Ryu

Member
I am very new to this, looking for suggestions on an e-bike that could handle a daily commute of about 15 miles, and being put on the train every day as part of my commute.

I am 5'11'', about 235 lbs, and want something that will handle some gravel / hills if necessary, that I can buy for somewhere in the 1 - 2k range and will last awhile.

Any suggestions would be appreciated, thanks!

Peter S.
@Peter Schnebly please check with the train you are taking prior to purchasing and make sure you are ready to assume the risk just in case as some trains do not allow eBikes aboard. It's hit and miss in Los Angeles as most of our Municipal trains do not allow eBikes aboard as well as the regional train (Metrolink)