Suggest Ebike for older riders

Gordon71

Well-Known Member
I have purchased 7 Ebikes in the last few years all off the internet. (Espin, Frey, Lectric and Ride 1 UP) You dont need no stinkin dealer. Most fixes are common sense and maybe require a Youtube video or a pair of pliers. Take what the doom and gloomers post with a grain of salt and as Freys motto says: Free Ride Enjoy Yourself.
I have to agree. I have a Rad Rover ST with 3400 miles and a Rad Mini ST with 700 miles on it. I'm no mechanic but had no problem assembling either one
and have no problems with either other than routine stuff like brake adjustment& pad replacement and chain replacement on the Rover. Rad has a bunch of easy to follow videos for basic maintenance & repair plus bunches of other videos all over the internet.
 

retiredNH

Well-Known Member
Region
USA
I have purchased 7 Ebikes in the last few years all off the internet. (Espin, Frey, Lectric and Ride 1 UP) You dont need no stinkin dealer. Most fixes are common sense and maybe require a Youtube video or a pair of pliers. Take what the doom and gloomers post with a grain of salt and as Freys motto says: Free Ride Enjoy Yourself.
Yea, I bet it took that many for you to find one that fit. Or held up... :)
Of course, if you know what you're doing, you can buy online. Heck, you can do like others have, DIY. If you know what you're doing . I suggest that someone looking for a lightweight ebike under 1,000 bucks probably doesn't fit in that category.
You disagree?
 

Balsa61

Member
Region
USA
Yea, I bet it took that many for you to find one that fit. Or held up... :)
Of course, if you know what you're doing, you can buy online. Heck, you can do like others have, DIY. If you know what you're doing . I suggest that someone looking for a lightweight ebike under 1,000 bucks probably doesn't fit in that category.
You disagree?
As the OP, yes I disagree. I can fix cars, motorcycles, boats and yes, even bicycles. I'm an Electrical and Electronic Engineer by education, but you didn't ask me, you just presumed. The reason I chose not to DIY is not ability but lack of time.

The reason we're going low cost is because we don't know how much we're going to use the bikes. I don't want to invest $3,000 to 4,000 on the bikes that may end up collecting dust. If we like riding our Ebikes, we can always upgrade in the future. But right now we are looking for entry level bikes.

Right now, the Lectric XP Lite checks all our boxes. I haven't heard any other suggestions that fit our needs. I will probably end up ordering that. And I'll review it when we get it, in the appropriate forum.

Thanks to the people who suggested different models
 
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tomjasz

Well-Known Member
Take what the doom and gloomers post with a grain of salt
Almost true.
I can’t count the number of home repair “I work on my cars” fellas go brain dead. There’s a hundred ways to F-up. I’ve listened to the tears on my support phone.

Agreed someone can learn but it takes someone who may want to post to forums for help sorting out problems they’re clueless about. Learning the vocabulary is also important.

I sold scores of whatchamacalits. And consoled the failed mechanic.

I had one customer that thought he needed a new controller. Ordered the wrong one. Decided he wanted shorter wires and changed out all connectors. Finally installs it and it’s not functioning correctly and please refund. Anyone remember why we us grounding devices when working with a BMS or an open PCB.
 

AHicks

Well-Known Member
Region
USA
City
Snow Bird - Summer S.E. Michigan, Winter Gulf Coast North Central Fl.
As the OP, yes I disagree. I can fix cars, motorcycles, boats and yes, even bicycles. I'm an Electrical and Electronic Engineer by education, but you didn't ask me, you just presumed. The reason I chose not to DIY is not ability but lack of time.

The reason we're going low cost is because we don't know how much we're going to use the bikes. I don't want to invest $3,000 to 4,000 on the bikes that may end up collecting dust. If we like riding our Ebikes, we can always upgrade in the future. But right now we are looking for entry level bikes.

Right now, the Lectric XP Lite checks all our boxes. I haven't heard any other suggestions that fit our needs. I will probably end up ordering that. And I'll review it when we get it, in the appropriate forum.

Thanks to the people who suggested different models
Slightly different take. I get where you are coming from not knowing if these bikes are going to be used often enough to justify the money spent on them. But just tossing out the fact RAD bikes have an incredible resale value. Likely one that better than anything else available. Tons written on that topic, but the point is, a RAD may let you spend a little more, knowing the gamble is minimized due to the resale value.

I'm cheap, went into it thinking like you, not knowing if or how much they would be used. I built my first, had that for a year and realized I was hopelessly hooked on e-bikes. I bought a Rad, and have had 3 more bikes since. Knowing that the bike is going to be used daily as long as I'm able (I'm 71). Today I'm focused on bike features way more than what they cost. Because I ride daily, cost is easily justified....

Bottom line, sure, many will agree that this first bike purchase is a giant leap of faith, but the vast majority of those making it will be wearing this giant grin for months afterward. Then, MANY of us will ride that first bike for a month or 2, then start mentally building a check list of the "must haves" the second bike will have. The first one will teach you a TON, making you a much more informed buyer, that's generally willing to spend way more than what that first bike cost, to get one that will really get the job done for you. The killer is, then you start looking for a third.....

A RAD bike will be easy to sell without loosing a lot of your investment. Though I've sold off others, I still have my '17 RAD, can't bring myself to sell it, it's now used as an "extra" bike.

Last thought, I think a hitch mounted bike rack of the right design might let you look at more conventional bikes - without worry about lifting them into the back of a car. And to take that just one step further, we do 99% of our riding right from the house. -Al
 
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tomjasz

Well-Known Member
I can fix cars, motorcycles, boats and yes, even bicycles. I'm an Electrical and Electronic Engineer by education, but you didn't ask me, you just presumed. The reason I chose not to DIY is not ability but lack of time.
OK, so would you use Yugo electrics in your vehicles? ;)

An RTR kit from Grin wouldn't take more than an hour or two. But I get that others may not have the time or inclination.
I must say I'm surprised someone at your level of expertise would opt for low bar electronics.

A year-round rider in SE Minnesnowta
 

rich c

Well-Known Member
I have purchased 7 Ebikes in the last few years all off the internet. (Espin, Frey, Lectric and Ride 1 UP) You dont need no stinkin dealer. Most fixes are common sense and maybe require a Youtube video or a pair of pliers. Take what the doom and gloomers post with a grain of salt and as Freys motto says: Free Ride Enjoy Yourself.
Why are all eBike forums awash with; how do I repair a flat, why can't I remove my hub motor wheel to repair a flat, is my charger dead, is my battery dead, is my motor dead, my motor works intermittently, and the list goes on infinitely. I've seen pictures of people who assembled their eBikes and the front fork is facing backwards. There is a definite need for dealer support in this country. I am a farm boy who basically hires no one, but that doesn't mean other folks don't need dealers. Send us a video of you removing pedals and cranks with that pliers! LOL
 

AHicks

Well-Known Member
Region
USA
City
Snow Bird - Summer S.E. Michigan, Winter Gulf Coast North Central Fl.
Why are all eBike forums awash with; how do I repair a flat, why can't I remove my hub motor wheel to repair a flat, is my charger dead, is my battery dead, is my motor dead, my motor works intermittently, and the list goes on infinitely. I've seen pictures of people who assembled their eBikes and the front fork is facing backwards. There is a definite need for dealer support in this country. I am a farm boy who basically hires no one, but that doesn't mean other folks don't need dealers. Send us a video of you removing pedals and cranks with that pliers! LOL
To put a different spin on the reason for all the questions, isn't that what places like this are all about? Doesn't having the option to ask for a hand understanding something help with the confidence to order something like an e-bike online? Did you start off understanding everything you now do routinely 50-60 years ago?

I get what you are saying to a certain extent, but I do not agree with the idea these bikes should all be purchased from dealers at all. If you WANT to learn about them, or reinforce the understanding you have of any of the systems involved, I say go for it. Help not hard to find.

I also get where even the most able might not be interested in messing with a bike if a dealer is available just 'cuz.. It's a major case of different strokes.... -Al
 

Taylor57

Well-Known Member
I am amazed at how much info we have at our fingertips with Google and You Tube videos. I am an insurance salesman by trade but have been able to do almost all my own fixes on my bikes in the last few years thanks to the interweb. Now I must admit, I have gotten lazy at times and strapped the bikes on the back of my car and dropped them at the LBS . My local shop also serves beer. Sport is there now getting a new back brake. I have been stopping in checking the status daily:cool:

 

rich c

Well-Known Member
To put a different spin on the reason for all the questions, isn't that what places like this are all about? Doesn't having the option to ask for a hand understanding something help with the confidence to order something like an e-bike online? Did you start off understanding everything you now do routinely 50-60 years ago?

I get what you are saying to a certain extent, but I do not agree with the idea these bikes should all be purchased from dealers at all. If you WANT to learn about them, or reinforce the understanding you have of any of the systems involved, I say go for it. Help not hard to find.

I also get where even the most able might not be interested in messing with a bike if a dealer is available just 'cuz.. It's a major case of different strokes.... -Al
I didn't say everyone has to buy from a dealer. But if you don't have a clue on how to set up a fork, you sure as hell need help! When told about the forks, some admit to not even watching the assembly video provided by the seller.
 

AHicks

Well-Known Member
Region
USA
City
Snow Bird - Summer S.E. Michigan, Winter Gulf Coast North Central Fl.
I didn't say everyone has to buy from a dealer. But if you don't have a clue on how to set up a fork, you sure as hell need help! When told about the forks, some admit to not even watching the assembly video provided by the seller.
Failing to see the issue. Even the absolute clueless can ask for help and get it. It's way more about the willingness/desire to learn.

And it's NOT just the clueless that don't know if the bike came with directions.....
 

fuyume

Member
Region
USA
I have purchased 7 Ebikes in the last few years all off the internet. (Espin, Frey, Lectric and Ride 1 UP) You dont need no stinkin dealer. Most fixes are common sense and maybe require a Youtube video or a pair of pliers. Take what the doom and gloomers post with a grain of salt and as Freys motto says: Free Ride Enjoy Yourself.
I am an experienced bicycle mechanic, former racer, and former bike shop mechanic. Based upon my experience with RadPower Bikes, I don’t know that I would recommend buying a direct marketing ebike unless the customer is fully prepared to deal with worst case scenarios and has the skillset and toolset to fix problems correctly themselves. Once that bike is out of the box, packing it back up and shipping it 3000 miles back to RadPower isn’t something that’s easy, and resolution could take weeks.

My bike had flaws that the average woman should not be forced to deal with, and probably would not be able to deal with. I doubt a FLBS is going to want to play intermediary for a competitor on a new sale. I sure wouldn’t.

I could have bought an Aventon Soltera from my FLBS. I chose to go with the RadMission because I felt the advantages of its design were worth the risk, and because I have the skills and tools. Also, there are a lot of RadPower bikes in my town and I have personal friends who have them and like them. I don’t regret my purchase, but there was a moment when I nearly boxed the thing back up and sent it back.
 

AHicks

Well-Known Member
Region
USA
City
Snow Bird - Summer S.E. Michigan, Winter Gulf Coast North Central Fl.
I am an experienced bicycle mechanic, former racer, and former bike shop mechanic. Based upon my experience with RadPower Bikes, I don’t know that I would recommend buying a direct marketing ebike unless the customer is fully prepared to deal with worst case scenarios and has the skillset and toolset to fix problems correctly themselves. Once that bike is out of the box, packing it back up and shipping it 3000 miles back to RadPower isn’t something that’s easy, and resolution could take weeks.

My bike had flaws that the average woman should not be forced to deal with, and probably would not be able to deal with. I doubt a FLBS is going to want to play intermediary for a competitor on a new sale. I sure wouldn’t.

I could have bought an Aventon Soltera from my FLBS. I chose to go with the RadMission because I felt the advantages of its design were worth the risk, and because I have the skills and tools. Also, there are a lot of RadPower bikes in my town and I have personal friends who have them and like them. I don’t regret my purchase, but there was a moment when I nearly boxed the thing back up and sent it back.
That's a call a buyer needs to make early on. I'm a big advocate of making that decision consciously prior to a consumer direct purchase. You are ready and prepared for situations like you ran into, or you are not. You are willing to get your hands dirty resolving an issue, or you are not! A survey of the local bikes shops, to see if there are any willing to work on an e-bike they didn't sell, would be part of a good plan, PRIOR to finding out there isn't one after the fact. Mobile services might be part of this call as well. Are you willing to take this responsibility on for the wider selection of available bikes, all at price levels WAY below what you might find at a shop?

Clearly I'm a fan of consumer direct. That's not to say I don't respect the opinion of somebody that's decided to purchases a bike at a shop. All I'm advocating is to make whichever call you make with your eyes open....

As far as a return, I've seen where some manf's are making a video available showing how to repack a bike for return. It would be obvious to me where if there were any chance of that happening, you would hang on to the packing materials. No sympathy here for those that don't consider that.

I don't believe ANY of the popular brand bike manf's are better than another when it comes to shipping damage. Clearly it's in their best interest to do what they can to prevent it. Dealing with damage HAS to be expensive for them, on a few fronts.... -Al
 

dodgeman

Well-Known Member
Region
USA
City
Macomb, Illinois
Me and the wife got new Trek Verve +3 last September. I’ve got 1300 mikes on mine, the wife about 700. They are beyond your price point. How did we know we wanted e bikes and would use them? We rented some a few times while on vacation. Rent some in your area or do a long weekend and travel somewhere you can rent them.

As you have gathered your budget is a sticking point. By the time the wife and I got our bikes, a bike rack for the back of my truck, and a few accessories, it was over $7k. That’s why I suggest you rent some first. You will probably know then if it’s worth spending the big bucks. Most of our riding is around where we live on rural roads. The bike adventure is right there at the end of our driveway.