Positive discussion on ebikes and pedal assist bicycles
During WW2, when resources were scarce, manufacturers weren't allowed to create certain non-essential decorative items. They were allowed to create ashtrays. As such, they put a dimple in their decorative items and a cigarette rest and created "ashtrays".
Get an electric motor bike, slap some pedals on the side and you have an e-bike which doesn't need registering.
I saw a guy the other day with one of these. His battery had died and he was pushing it because it was too hard to ride with the pedals.
They'll be popular though (unfortunately).
There has already been a legal case on this particular style of vehicle. The courts have ruled that it is a moped and must be registered. Our legal system has recognised that the electric propulsion must be auxiliary and that the main method of propulsion is still to be the pedals.
It is not the roads or cycle paths that worry me. This type of vehicle will be the type of thing to get into the hands of people likelly to run them up onto footpaths etc at their max speed.
This will be a great safety concern, Imagine up to 150kgs travelling at 30kmh in the space where elderly and children walk and where blind driveways demand attention.
Again this wil require sufficient policing to ensure they are used correctly....can we trust this to happen?
On the road and or purpose built cycle tracks I have no problem, but I have concerns for shared paths and dedicated footpaths. They will be used there guaranteed, legal or not.
After a few path kills, some of those pedestrians who insist on taking over the whole path or walk on the wrong side may finally get the message and do the right thing. Or natural evolution may kick in.
Either that or they'll all become compo chasers, given that the law is framed to require bicyclists to stop to avoid accidents...
It's rare to see so many fails on one piece of vapourware, surprised it don't have hubless wheels too.
...whatever the road rules, self-preservation is the absolute priority for a cyclist when mixing it with motorised traffic.
London Boy 29/12/2011
I've never ridden an electric bike but I'm very keen to do so. I like the looks of the elation kit.
Firstly, at present I'm a simple commuter. My old time riding buddy totally destroyed me on any ride we went on. He attributed it to his bike being far superior to my entry level XC MTB. We swapped bikes and proved that it wasn't the bike - it was the rider.
With that established I am thinking that the vast majority on this site ride very nice road bikes, like to ride in groups, obtain very respectful speeds etc etc. I personally respect that a lot. However I feel that being elitist about it won't help cycling in the least.
Any barriers that we can remove to encourage others to put their bums on bikes the better we all will be. eBikes are a step in that direction. Personally I think that the more bums on bikes the far better off we all will be. The motorists will think twice about the dangerous things that they do if the one that they injure / kill potentially is a loved one or someone they actually know, or even thrice if they may be the victim of a thoughtless motorist.
I wouldn't like to see eBikes ridden on footpaths. The first time someone gets bowled over we'd see further legislation imposed.
Kona - Blast Delux
"a house full of stuff that I hardly notice, ..."
sounds like how scooters in greece are driven
Worried about electric bikes on bike paths?
Brisbane Courier Mail Motoring Editor, Mark Hinchcliffe, wanted motor bikes of any size to use bike paths at up to 40 kph.
Now you have a real worry.
I know of an e-bike advocate who's argument goes something like this.....I can ride to work down hill at 50kph and travel at the same speed as other traffic safely, so why cant I have an electric motor powerfull enough to take me up that same hill at the same speed.
Personally I dont really care, Im happy to share with the assisted type ones but as usual theres a slippery slope.
I'll give them one point though, 200w is most likely undergunned for somewhere like Hobart .
He can have it. As long as he registers it correctly in his state (i.e. as a motor bike), complies with the relevant ADR rules (blinkers, brake lights, headlights, horns, braking capability etc.,.), and has the requisite license, helmet and other motor bike safety features. And rides it only on roads (i.e. no footpaths, cycleways etc.,.).
Nothing to stop the e-bike suppliers doing the leg work for him, other than lack of market demand.
Somebody has to do something, and it's just incredibly pathetic that it has to be us -Jerry Garcia
Yep we are on the same page on this one Wombat.
He wants it all of course, the bike paths and footpaths[this is in Tas] We dont have many bike paths but it is legal to ride on the footpath unless signed otherwise,busy shopping areas usually.
Im not saying everyone who wants to use or uses an e-bike is an idiot like this fella[I might need one myself one day, who knows]. Only that this is some of the logic being used in the push for more powerfull motors.
very well written and insightful.
In a few states not so long ago the power limit was 300 watts.
a ebike with 200 watts is a joke, if they actually had a max power of 200watts, after the extra weight and drag you would be better off on a normal bike.
the 2 stroke kits are putting out over 1000watts and as everyone here has commented they are still quite slow.
I think the law in wa that prohibits the engine being engaged on a cycleway/shared path should deal with most legitimate complaints about ebikes.
Is this the same bloke who lives in Feen Tree and builds and sells e-bikes? He used to post on here, but left because he wasn't allowed to spuik his wares IIRC.
I'm not so sure... Who will enforce this law? In my old stomping ground the cops couldn't even keep the local kids from tearing along the PSP on unregistered trail bikes... Not sure they'd have much chance of determining whether a silent electric engine was running!
At the end of the day irrespective of the mode of transport common courtesy and common sense are the essential ingredients for successful PSP sharing - sadly neither is particularly common
If the rider is not pedalling and the bike is moving on flat ground or uphill, it's pretty clear evidence that it's running on non-auxiliary power. Any plod who's half interested in trying can figure that out and slap on a charge that will stick.
In my parts of Sydney, young offenders on unregistered trail bikes do get attention from my local police - but I suspect they escape with nothing more than a laughable finger wagging due to our Young Offenders Act. Most of the people I see on motorised BSO look to be well over the young offenders age-group - they look like ppl who could've lost their driving licenses.
Somebody has to do something, and it's just incredibly pathetic that it has to be us -Jerry Garcia
Prototype Lexus electric bicycle:
carbon frame, 8 speed hub gearing, 240w motor.
I must admit, against my better judgement, I like.
Too bad it's not going into production.
Petrol and Electric motors work differently. Petrol engines develop maximum power at high rev's, whilst electric motors do so at low rev's. (I say this, having driven both electric and petrol/lpg forklift trucks in a previous job). This makes electric motors ideal for power-assist, as they develop maximum power exactly at the moment that you need them. The electric motor isn't meant to take the bicycle up the hill for you. They are electric-ASSIST - they HELP you get up the hill.
Another problem is just the attitude towards cycling in general in Australia. We seem to be all obsessed with the highest possible speed of 30kph+. Chill, relax and learn to happily pootle along at 15-20kph. Anything faster than 25kph is usually just overcoming air resistance anyway.
Electric motor has max torque at 0 rpm and max power at around the mid portion of its full RPM range. So it's not exactly "low rev". There's a difference b/n torque and power and I think you are getting the two mixed up.
Who in their right mind would ride an electric assist bike in the time trial position? It's unnecessary and uncomfortable - two things that put people off normal bicycles. As Mulger Bill stated above, it's rare to find so much fail in one spot but not include hubless wheels.
So we get the leaders we deserve and we elect, we get the companies and the products that we ask for, right? And we have to ask for different things. – Paul Gilding
but really, that's rubbish. We get none of it because the choices are illusory.
One of the guys at work here has an electric assist bike which he bought when his car got totalled (to replace not supplement). If it wasnt for the electric factor he probably wouldnt ride to work due to the seabreeze in Perth making travelling 25-30km south in the afternoon a pretty hard introduction into bicycle commuting. As it is he rides the electric bike almost every day (occasionally using public transport), which he probably would never have done without the electric assist.
If it gets more people cycling and exercising in general then I am all for it. As long as the power output limit is kept such that the top speed is around the speed of a normal fast cyclist on flat ground. I dont buy the argument about inexperienced cyclist flying along and causing accidents - after all the most noob gumby cyclist can do 50km/h down a hill (I know I did) and is probably only slower up the hill an on the flat. My mate tells me the electric does nothing above about 30km/h and if you want to go fater you need either more leg power or gravity assist.
Does electric bikes really help people to exercise? Well, I guess pushing it at the start and end of the rides will build up upper body and some core strength, and a little aerobic.
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