New Buyer Questions

BlueMoth

New Member
So I'm thinking about buying an ebike! I need a form of transportation and even a tiny Smart Twofor is starting to sound like too much to me (6k for a used one, registration, insurance, etc.) I guess that's how I've stumbled upon ebikes.

The places I'm most likely to go are within ~10 miles of me (with a max distance of ~20 miles) but some are on top of pretty daunting hills, which kind of makes my 7.2 FX Trek a non-viable option.

My main concerns are the weather conditions and light conditions I'll be riding in. My college courses go to about 10:30 at night, and lately El Nino has been drenching my area. Does anyone have experience with this? Riding a bike in the rain at night sounds a little daunting.

Most likely, I'll go for a pre-built bike that I can have serviced locally, and if I ever need to get further than my range I'll bum a ride with the boyfriend. I'm not super bummed out about the cost (I'm looking at bikes anywhere from 4k-6k) as I know, in the long run, I'll be spending less money and contributing positively to my economic impact.

TLDR:
Does anyone have experience with lugging college books around on their ebike?
Does anyone have experience with riding at night in the rain? How's that going for you?
Does anyone have recommendations for a ebike for a 5'1" girl?

Thanks!
 

Llcjay

Member
Commuting on a bike Or ebike around colleges is a great idea. Either backpack or bike rack.

A petite woman riding home late at night 10 miles in good weather or bad sounds like a horrible idea.

Any question il be in my cave
 

J.R.

Well-Known Member
So I'm thinking about buying an ebike! I need a form of transportation and even a tiny Smart Twofor is starting to sound like too much to me (6k for a used one, registration, insurance, etc.) I guess that's how I've stumbled upon ebikes.

The places I'm most likely to go are within ~10 miles of me (with a max distance of ~20 miles) but some are on top of pretty daunting hills, which kind of makes my 7.2 FX Trek a non-viable option.

My main concerns are the weather conditions and light conditions I'll be riding in. My college courses go to about 10:30 at night, and lately El Nino has been drenching my area. Does anyone have experience with this? Riding a bike in the rain at night sounds a little daunting.

Most likely, I'll go for a pre-built bike that I can have serviced locally, and if I ever need to get further than my range I'll bum a ride with the boyfriend. I'm not super bummed out about the cost (I'm looking at bikes anywhere from 4k-6k) as I know, in the long run, I'll be spending less money and contributing positively to my economic impact.

TLDR:
Does anyone have experience with lugging college books around on their ebike?
Does anyone have experience with riding at night in the rain? How's that going for you?
Does anyone have recommendations for a ebike for a 5'1" girl?

Thanks!
A good option might be the Easy Motion Street. @PowerMe posted good experience here: http://electricbikereview.com/community/threads/my-2015-evo-street-has-arrived.1533/

Good luck!
 

BlueMoth

New Member
Commuting on a bike Or ebike around colleges is a great idea. Either backpack or bike rack.

A petite woman riding home late at night 10 miles in good weather or bad sounds like a horrible idea.

Any question il be in my cave

If the issue is me being in harm's way, I live in a really safe area, so other than the cars out there, I think I'd be pretty okay. I also live in a very bike friendly area with lots of bike lanes/ paths.
 

Ann M.

Well-Known Member
Lots of lights, @BlueMoth , don't let the fear mongers get in the way, just use common sense, bike paths and lights! I worked at a local community college for 10 years that was about 8 miles from my apartment and the geology/oceanography lab which I ran didn't close until 10pm after the last class of the day. Just be aware and maybe have some pepper spray but just stay focused and enjoy riding in the evening :).

BTW, I agree with J.R., the Easy Motion bikes are good performers and stable design. There are other options; maybe an IZip Dash or one of it's clones , so you have higher speed and a 48V battery pack so no worries about range in the dark or rain; or a more classic commuter, the IZip E3 Path+ with a 48V battery system. Court just reviewed a new Pedego ebike, the Ridge Rider, that for a little more bucks has a lot of features that would be ideal for a city commuter; just add a rear rack and go!
 

JoePah

Well-Known Member
@BlueMoth I've ridden home at night and it's around 9 miles. I really didn't care for it. Lack of peripheral vision on bike paths and crossing intersections seemed risky.

You may want to try it on your pedal bike once with at least a 600 lumen head light and a 1 watt flasher in the back. .I ride with two rear flashers. And try riding in the rain a few times on the weekend to see if its something you would do on a regular basis.

If you still think you want to buy an ebike just test ride a number of different types, including a step through..
 

Jack Tyler

Active Member
Interesting. I happened to just finish reading a lengthy discussion on risk mitigation, in that case addressing the relative risks of skydiving, airplane flying and motorcycle riding. One bottom line: There are things you can do to reduce risk but there also remain risks inherent in the nature of the activity no matter how knowledgeable & current you are. What first popped into my mind were: Day or night you are going to want head protection from the rain (not just a helmet) and that will inevitably reduce your peripheral vision and hearing ability. I find hearing a key sensor when riding a bike, and hearing will be further degraded by the rain hitting your rain hood. Riding home in the rain & dark will have some level of risk, but riding TO work to start the day during a downpour is going to add a bit of 'yuck' to the equation. I liked the 'try it and see' suggestion above. Layout some alternative routes (Google Map's has a bike routing option), suit up and see what you think in some daytime rainy runs. Then add a degree of additional risk for night riding and see what you think.

The old saying is that there is no bad weather, only bad clothing. But suiting up to deal with the bad weather is another thing entirely...and in a warm'ish shower you get to choose between getting wet and changing on arrival vs. enjoying a sauna on the way to work. Do'able? Absolutely. Desirable? I biked and motorcycled to work but never liked doing it in the rain. But viable enough *for you*? You'll know after trying it.
 

BlueMoth

New Member
@BlueMoth I've ridden home at night and it's around 9 miles. I really didn't care for it. Lack of peripheral vision on bike paths and crossing intersections seemed risky.

You may want to try it on your pedal bike once with at least a 600 lumen head light and a 1 watt flasher in the back. .I ride with two rear flashers. And try riding in the rain a few times on the weekend to see if its something you would do on a regular basis.

If you still think you want to buy an ebike just test ride a number of different types, including a step through..

I actually have a really good headlight as I used to use it to commute to my previous job on the trek. Good idea! I'll have to give rain-riding a go.

Interesting. I happened to just finish reading a lengthy discussion on risk mitigation, in that case addressing the relative risks of skydiving, airplane flying and motorcycle riding. One bottom line: There are things you can do to reduce risk but there also remain risks inherent in the nature of the activity no matter how knowledgeable & current you are. What first popped into my mind were: Day or night you are going to want head protection from the rain (not just a helmet) and that will inevitably reduce your peripheral vision and hearing ability. I find hearing a key sensor when riding a bike, and hearing will be further degraded by the rain hitting your rain hood. Riding home in the rain & dark will have some level of risk, but riding TO work to start the day during a downpour is going to add a bit of 'yuck' to the equation. I liked the 'try it and see' suggestion above. Layout some alternative routes (Google Map's has a bike routing option), suit up and see what you think in some daytime rainy runs. Then add a degree of additional risk for night riding and see what you think.

The old saying is that there is no bad weather, only bad clothing. But suiting up to deal with the bad weather is another thing entirely...and in a warm'ish shower you get to choose between getting wet and changing on arrival vs. enjoying a sauna on the way to work. Do'able? Absolutely. Desirable? I biked and motorcycled to work but never liked doing it in the rain. But viable enough *for you*? You'll know after trying it.

This is really good information. I'll definitely give the riding in the rain thing a thorough try, and then step it up to night riding. It'll have to wait until the weekend considering that with a full time job and full time school I have little to no free time during the week. And I really appreciate the bike recommendations. Luckily, the rain thing is only an issue about 2-3 months out of the year as I live in Nor-Cal. Hopefully all works out. =)