Tuesday, August 18, 2009

E-bikes, these were super sweet and will probably be the bridge to get people on bikes in Omaha. Giant has offered e-bikes for a while now. They're pedal assist so no throtle. Twenty mile per hour speed governor. The battery re-charges under braking. Guess it's like a Prius with pedals. Got hills? No problem.

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erik said...

why are you deleting comments?

this bike can't be used on trails as steve established!

it's a marketing farce.

Steve said...

What is maintenance like on these things? Can a bike shop fix the motor if something goes wrong, or would a person have to find some other sort of shop? If the motor goes out when riding, is it difficult to ride (heavy?)? Is the motor detachable?

My experience is that newbie commuters have more of a fear of drivers than hills, so they try to ride in places that lack autos like trails and sidewalks. These bikes aren't allowed in those places, so it can't help with that problem. That said, these are way better than full-blown autos, but still not as good as normal bicycles.

MOD said...

That was my first question, I don't really want learn a bunch of ohm meter crap. I'm a bike mechanic, not a small engine repairman.

The Bionx system is pretty cool, it's a maintenance free brushless motor and is a rebuildable bearing hub. Canadian made.

They weigh a freakin' ton.

The motor puts out less than 1/2 horsepower (350 watts) so it's legal on trails.

Personally I'm not a big fan of e-bikes but I can see where they'd help people get around on the difficult terrain omaha and other river cities have.

sstevensinkc said...

It also has a manual recharge system fall back for the battery if it gets low. By dragging the rear brake(similar to the systems found in Lexus hybrids) or by using the control button and select anything from -1 to -4. Either method will recharge the battery enough to get a charge to get you home to plug it in. By selecting the negative number on the control panel it will create resistance similar to a mag trainer. But if you do this while going down hill when you would normally coast you probably won't notice.

It's a pretty amazing system that is well thought out. Bionx did a good job with it.