New member, looking to get into ebikes

Casual Rider

Member
Region
Canada
Hello. Just wanted to introduce myself. I'm 62, am a fairly experienced bicyclist and very experienced motocross and dirt bike rider. I still ride vintage motocross and I ride my bicycle fairly regularly.
I ride a 30 year old Iron Horse hybrid bicycle that I bought new in 1990. I've put a lot of miles on it over the years, but it is still in very good condition and I have no need to upgrade.
I'm thinking of getting an ebike because I like to tour ride and I'm finding these days - particularly on hilly roads, that I don't enjoy the ride as much as I used to. I'd rather look around and ride a bit longer, than cut my ride short because I'm getting tired and sweaty, or pick a flat route because I don't want to deal with hills. I also like to use my bike to run to the store and pick up stuff and have racks and a removable front basket for such purposes. I'm also a writer with the local newspaper and freelance writer, so I would be using the bike for daytripper articles and some YouTube videos.
Anyway, that's my story. I'm doing all the research I can. Right now I'm looking at all different bikes, but there are a few which are leading the pack. I'm on a budget. I can afford an expensive bike, but I'd rather keep the cost down as much as possible. Here's what I've been looking at:

Radrunner - I have a friend with a Rad Cargo and he absolutely loves it. Unfortunately he's too far away from me to be able to try his and Rad bikes are hard to find in Eastern Canada. This is the frontrunner because of price - $1699 Canadian - reputation, and the fact that as a dirt biker I think I'd like the 20 inch fat tires. It will also haul just about anything I need.

Pedego Element - There is a Pedego dealer very close to me, so that is a big plus. It's about $600 more than the Radrunner and has no racks etc., so that would have to be added. I plan to demo one next month just to see if I like the 20" fat bike style.

Daymak Tofino - Not the power or wide tires of either of the above, bit this is a new Daymak model that is on sale in Canada right now for $799 Canadian pesos. It's actually very similar to the my current Iron Horse, so that is appealing. There is also a dealer near me. I can't find a review on these to save my life so I'm curious as to what members here think of the specs, so I have added a link.

Thanks for all your help and look forward to posting about my future ebike adventures.
 

indianajo

Well-Known Member
Welcome to the site & maybe the powered segment of the bike hobby.
I do my shopping off the bike, the cargo version shown left. I like having bosses in the frame so cargo hung on the front doesn't steer with the handlebars. I have my battery up there now, previously a rack for 3 two liter bottles. Mine is a yubabike bodaboda. I carry up to 80 lb. Today I carried 2 10' plastic conduits I found on the road, in addition to my $40 of groceries. I have a wide aluminum frame on top of the child seat rack to tie stuff to, like 2 1/2 gal bottles of weed killer. Or 2 1/2 gal of diesel fuel.
Other cargo bike with bosses in the frame for front basket is radwagon. Unfortunately, rad went to 22 " tires this year. You can only buy replacements, if at all, from RAD. Rad did get rid of the inappropriate direct drive motor on a cargo hauler. Rad still uses cheapo shimano 7 speed derailleur, that caused me several problems on my MTB's.
Pedego & any dealer sold bike gets you out of the electrical troubleshooting business if there is a problem. As long as the dealer stays in business. Your bike might wait in line for service, however. Pedego has a cargo model, costs more than mine.
I found excessive weight on the rear baskets & nothing hung off the front caused the front tire my MTB's & cruiser to snap sideways on bumps, ridges, sticks, gravel patches. I went over the handlebars & hit my chin 5 times off the MTB's & cruiser. A loaded front basket would help that. The stretch cargo frame of my bodaboda puts my weight on the front tire, and there have been no accidents in 6000 miles of riding this bike.
Other cargo bikes, M2s, Magnum, Blix Packa (24" tires) xtracycle, Kona Ute, Surly (heavy steel frame for big people). I ride 2.1" x 26" tires, carry 20 lb tools & water, 170 lb me, and 80 lb, sometimes 100 lb, groceries & supplies. 30 miles out to my summer camp, over 77 or more hills up to 15%. 85% unpowered, my heart needs the exercise. But not on 25 mph headwind days.
There are other configurations like bin forward cargo bikes for places with no wind, and dual front tire cargo bikes that tilt to keep from falling over. See cargo bike thread below. https://electricbikereview.com/forums/forum/cargo/
Happy shopping, & later riding.
 

legsofbeer

Active Member
Radrunner - I have a friend with a Rad Cargo and he absolutely loves it. Unfortunately he's too far away from me to be able to try his and Rad bikes are hard to find in Eastern Canada. This is the frontrunner because of price - $1699 Canadian - reputation, and the fact that as a dirt biker I think I'd like the 20 inch fat tires.
Speaking as one who has 4000 miles on a 2019 radrover, and from a buddy who has a 2018 radwagon, the drive train is legit and a good value. One tip on buying from radpower, there's been recent reports that they're charging a tad excessive per-item shipping on parts and accessories, but not if you buy the extras with the bike itself. So if you go that direction and you're planning on tricking out the bike, do it up front. The battery is holding up to their claimed capabilities, for me. Be aware the stated weight of the (edit) radrunner is 65 lb (you'll have to convert that to kags). If you have a bad back or bad legs this might an issue unless you have a roll-out/roll-in home parking situation. One more datapoint, I've had zero problems with the radrover derailleur, even when having to downshift during a climb.

You don't mention whether you're considering a radrunner one or a radrunner plus. The One is a single-speed, that would be a turn-off for me unless I were planning on mostly throttling from a stop or on a climb (I don't do either).
Pedego Element
I've heard only positive comments about Pedego bikes. The one you cited has a smaller battery (10 Ah) than the rad. It also is significantly lighter at 57.5 lb.
Daymak Tofino - Not the power or wide tires of either of the above
Never heard of them, do your own research to see if they give the impression of being in it for the long term. The bike you mention looks like a road bike that will ride most like what you already have. The battery isn't much, at only 280 W-Hrs, but the bike is nice and light at 43 lb. Intended to be ridden like a road bike with a little assist when you want it.

Final thoughts: if you're planning on riding in snow or slush, the fat tire bikes will do you better, and you can buy studded tires or a stud spike kit. Whatever you get, budget 8-10% of the price of the bike for a pair of locks (eg. thick chain and a U-lock, cause opportunistic thieves usually don't carry tools to break both types).
 
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Casual Rider

Member
Region
Canada
Welcome to the site & maybe the powered segment of the bike hobby.
I do my shopping off the bike, the cargo version shown left. I like having bosses in the frame so cargo hung on the front doesn't steer with the handlebars. I have my battery up there now, previously a rack for 3 two liter bottles. Mine is a yubabike bodaboda. I carry up to 80 lb. Today I carried 2 10' plastic conduits I found on the road, in addition to my $40 of groceries. I have a wide aluminum frame on top of the child seat rack to tie stuff to, like 2 1/2 gal bottles of weed killer. Or 2 1/2 gal of diesel fuel.
Other cargo bike with bosses in the frame for front basket is radwagon. Unfortunately, rad went to 22 " tires this year. You can only buy replacements, if at all, from RAD. Rad did get rid of the inappropriate direct drive motor on a cargo hauler. Rad still uses cheapo shimano 7 speed derailleur, that caused me several problems on my MTB's.
Pedego & any dealer sold bike gets you out of the electrical troubleshooting business if there is a problem. As long as the dealer stays in business. Your bike might wait in line for service, however. Pedego has a cargo model, costs more than mine.
I found excessive weight on the rear baskets & nothing hung off the front caused the front tire my MTB's & cruiser to snap sideways on bumps, ridges, sticks, gravel patches. I went over the handlebars & hit my chin 5 times off the MTB's & cruiser. A loaded front basket would help that. The stretch cargo frame of my bodaboda puts my weight on the front tire, and there have been no accidents in 6000 miles of riding this bike.
Other cargo bikes, M2s, Magnum, Blix Packa (24" tires) xtracycle, Kona Ute, Surly (heavy steel frame for big people). I ride 2.1" x 26" tires, carry 20 lb tools & water, 170 lb me, and 80 lb, sometimes 100 lb, groceries & supplies. 30 miles out to my summer camp, over 77 or more hills up to 15%. 85% unpowered, my heart needs the exercise. But not on 25 mph headwind days.
There are other configurations like bin forward cargo bikes for places with no wind, and dual front tire cargo bikes that tilt to keep from falling over. See cargo bike thread below. https://electricbikereview.com/forums/forum/cargo/
Happy shopping, & later riding.

That is excellent information. Thank you so much!
 

Casual Rider

Member
Region
Canada
Speaking as one who has 4000 miles on a 2019 radrover, and from a buddy who has a 2018 radwagon, the drive train is legit and a good value. One tip on buying from radpower, there's been recent reports that they're charging a tad excessive per-item shipping on parts and accessories, but not if you buy the extras with the bike itself. So if you go that direction and you're planning on tricking out the bike, do it up front. The battery is holding up to their claimed capabilities, for me. Be aware the stated weight of the (edit) radrunner is 65 lb (you'll have to convert that to kags). If you have a bad back or bad legs this might an issue unless you have a roll-out/roll-in home parking situation. One more datapoint, I've had zero problems with the radrover derailleur, even when having to downshift during a climb.

You don't mention whether you're considering a radrunner one or a radrunner plus. The One is a single-speed, that would be a turn-off for me unless I were planning on mostly throttling from a stop or on a climb (I don't do either).

I've heard only positive comments about Pedego bikes. The one you cited has a smaller battery (10 Ah) than the rad. It also is significantly lighter at 57.5 lb.

Never heard of them, do your own research to see if they give the impression of being in it for the long term. The bike you mention looks like a road bike that will ride most like what you already have. The battery isn't much, at only 280 W-Hrs, but the bike is nice and light at 43 lb. Intended to be ridden like a road bike with a little assist when you want it.

Final thoughts: if you're planning on riding in snow or slush, the fat tire bikes will do you better, and you can buy studded tires or a stud spike kit. Whatever you get, budget 8-10% of the price of the bike for a pair of locks (eg. thick chain and a U-lock, cause opportunistic thieves usually don't carry tools to break both types).
Thank you! I'm looking at the regular Radrunner. I think I'm going to rule out the Daymak, even though the price is amazing, because I'll still have my old Iron Horse for old style rides.
I'm a fairly big and strong guy at 6' and 220 lbs, and used to riding much heavier and more powerful dirt bikes, so the weight of the Rad won't be an issue. I actually have an old Honda SL100 that I ride in vintage motocross races, which is similar in size to the Radrunner, but with of course more power and about 150 lbs heavier.
 

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Phassy

New Member
Region
United Kingdom
I've got a radrunner 1 I got it last November 20 UK top speed 15 mph it was ok when I first got it but I soon got used to it . I have upgraded to 35 amp controller I get about 22 mph now it might not seem much but it does make a difference , only draw back is my battery does not last very long and I mean I get about 20 miles in distance before battery is flat so it means messing about with settings so I can increase my distance travelled bit of a pain really a new battery is needed more money to spend and battery's are not cheap as you know unless your one o those whizz kids on YouTube who build there own from a few pieces of cardboard and sticky black plastic 😁 overall I wouldn't recommend a radrunner if your a big guy unless your gonna do a few upgrades plus the dropout sizes are awkward as well I am trying to source a new motor at the moment the one I got with bike is very very noisy I haven't done much mileage either it's only a 250 watt UK model anyway some things for you to think about 👍👍
 

Urban Coyote

Member
Region
Canada
City
Burlington
I have had a Radrunner for about a month now and I love it. I also have a Radrover, but the Radrunner is now my go-to bike. It’s just so much fun! I’m 64, 6 feet and 200 pounds - almost the same ‘specs’ as you, though probably not as strong, haha. The Radrunner has a rated capacity of 300 pounds, and in Canada we get the 500 W motor with top speed of 32 km/h, which I find is plenty of power. I had never ridden the bike before I bought it, and I was worried that it was going to feel unstable, judging by its appearance. Not so. In fact, it feels more stable than the Radrover, even going downhill.

I really like the built in rear rack for carrying things. Be aware though, that most pannier bags won’t fit the larger tubes on the rack. I am awaiting the Rad Fremont bag which is designed to fit the larger rack tubes on their bikes.

I don’t know anything about the other bikes you mention, but I can highly recommend the Radrunner. I have also found the company great to deal with. They always get back to me quickly when I have a question, and they seem to embrace many positive values beyond being in business just to make money.

All the best! Let us know what you decide.
 

Casual Rider

Member
Region
Canada
Thanks everyone for the very helpful replies. I picked up a used RadMini a few weeks ago and am absolutely loving it. I've ridden more in the cold the past few weeks than I did on my regular hybrid all last summer. :)

Radmini with basket.jpg