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175 posts

Master Geek

  # 2108941 16-Oct-2018 15:44
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Go to your local bike shop and ask for a Demo ride

13301 posts

Uber Geek

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  # 2108944 16-Oct-2018 15:47
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I'm pretty interested in them also.


I was having a discussion with someone on the bus this morning about ebikes. I wondered if you'd get funny looks on the Rail Trail if you took an ebike? I supposed you might, but it'd be OK, he reckoned it would be a no-no. Can't see it being an issue, so long as you are careful and respectful, given that an ebike can go a lot faster than a human powered bike.





Depends on the type of bike. Some have a throttle, so are in effect an electric moped. Most (since they seem to originate in Europe and are thus governed by EU rules) have (a) a lower speed and (b) no 'throttle only' mode - you need to pedal and the cadence sensor and/or torque sensor read the effort and apply electric assistance as required. Described in one thing I read as "like having a permanent tail wind on demand"!


13301 posts

Uber Geek

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  # 2108945 16-Oct-2018 15:48
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Go to your local bike shop and ask for a Demo ride





My local bike shop is some distance from here - about 50km - so yes, I will eventually do that!

195 posts

Master Geek


  # 2109134 16-Oct-2018 21:42
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I've got two e-bikes - one for commuting and an eMTB - and SWMBO has one, a commuter (but quite different from mine).


None of them cost more than the early-to-mid $3000's.  Sure you can pay ten grand for the latest and greatest technology without the electrical assist, but if you're neither a serious competitor nor a snob, then why?


My commuter: a Cannondale.  Without the electrical assist it'd be a reasonable hybrid/cross bike.  Shimano motor drive system.  Very smooth and responsive.  Disadvantage: power assist is limited to 25 km/h; thereafter, you're on your own.  Still, I love it.  Makes it possible for me to get some exercise (and save some petrol) while commuting while not arriving at work in an unpleasantly sweaty state.


My e-bike: a Merida Big 9 with a Lekkie kit.  Not quite so refined as the Shimano drive but more user-configurable.  Has enabled me to bike in a location where I never could previously (my home is down a very long, steep, muddy, unsealed drive).


SWMBO's commuter: a Kreidler.  She loves it.  Again, very smooth, but limited to 25 km/h.  Has rim rather than disc brakes, so I'd be reluctant for her to ride it much faster.


We hired Kalkhoff e-bikes on a recent European holiday.  Perhaps one shouldn't judge a product from hired examples, but they were not at all pleasant to ride.


My expertise and four bucks will get you a cappuccino, but here goes anyway:


Don't accept anything that hasn't got a mid-drive (i.e. the motor drives the chain, not a hub).


Don't accept a bike whose battery sits on the rear package shelf.  You don't want that weight so high up.





106 posts

Master Geek

  # 2109153 16-Oct-2018 22:22
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I’ve got a Specialized Vado which I use when I go into the office which is a 60 km round trip.

Max assist 45 km/hr, mid-drive German Brose belt-driven motor with 90 Nm of torque.

I use it more to enable commuting at a higher speed and also makes head winds a non issue which I used to dread. Flying up inclines at 40 km/hr is amazing, the amount of power the motor gives is incredible. Belt-driven means it is almost silent too.

Definitely go for mid-drive over hub drive if any inclines are involved.

367 posts

Ultimate Geek


  # 2109168 16-Oct-2018 23:07
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I second the Magnum bikes - I've done 3000kms on my Mi5 in the last year.


I live in Wellington, and although it's a lower end bike with a hub motor (not mid-drive) it does handle the hills well. As another poster with a Magnum mentioned it will do 38km/h on its own quite happily, I do tend to leave the peddle assistance on relatively high to deal with traffic and hills.


Having a throttle is useful for taking off at traffic lights, and keeping up with traffic, I feel safer than I do on a conventional bike as I know I can get up to speed quickly should I need to.


My only pitfall with the cheaper bikes is that the brakes on mine aren't hydraulic, and require maintenance fairly often.


If you're considering an eBike, go try one - there are models for anyone's preference/use case.

929 posts

Ultimate Geek

  # 2109180 16-Oct-2018 23:47
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Does anyone have one of these?


I would like to cycle more but hills do not really agree with me as much as they used to, with age, dodgy knee



I used to have 'squishy' knees but since I started cycling they have stopped doing that.


Cycling is good for knees. As it is non-impact loading which strengthens but not damages, according to an ortho-dr I spoke to about it.


Depends what's wrong with yours of course.


1241 posts

Uber Geek


  # 2109246 17-Oct-2018 08:41
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My direct copy from other topic:


So just a little feedback, if anyone would be interested (I end up with Hiko Pulse).


I commute from Te Atatu South to CBD (used to be 17.5km each way, now 16.4km), single charge is enough and there's about 1/3 or 1/4 left. So that give the range of about ~50km in total. I charge daily, and it uses about 400-450 watts to fully charged


I've done almost 4000km since 1 March to date, but had 6 weeks holiday. My rare tyre (maxxis pace) is almost wasted already :( not sure what is the normal range for bicycles' tyres? It's soft and I don't like it as I have a puncher about every second week. Ordered a different tyres (Schwalbe Land Cruiser), should be with me this/next week + sealant to try out.


it's rare hub motor, top assist speed 35km/h, pretty much Magnum clone, but with extra bells and whistles. 

helping others at

1003 posts

Uber Geek


  # 2109283 17-Oct-2018 09:14
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robjg63: ... Bikebarn has discount for AA members (10% from memory) and also said that you can make AA callouts. I think this is only if you buy via Bikebarn (but I could be wrong). 


I was browsing the AA site today for a different reason & came across this on their T&C's page:


Electric Bicycles: Where an Electric Bicycle becomes immobile due to a flat battery, electrical system issues, a flat or damaged tire or wheel, broken chain, or broken pedals, the AA will provide bicycle recovery to the Member’s home address, vehicle, or place of repair. Carriage of passengers can only be to the legal limit of the attending vehicle. If alternative transport for the Member is required, this will be at the Member’s expense.


So, maybe not only for Bikebarn customers?

Please keep this GZ community vibrant by contributing in a constructive & respectful manner.

1336 posts

Uber Geek

  # 2109292 17-Oct-2018 09:21
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When I did the Otago Rail Trail year and a half ago e-bikes were just becoming popular. I spoke to an operator recently who said now 50% of his clients request e-bikes to hire and its not just the older riders.


Some things to consider before purchasing...........


Try before you buy. Make sure to ride different models to see what suits you best. I ditched my old style  bike with its "head down, bum up" posture.Now I have a city bike with an upright posture, much more comfortable to ride, easier on the back and you are better able to enjoy the view.


There are 3 motor placements normally. Front wheel, back wheel or mid-drive. I found the mid-drive with torque-sensor to be the most natural feel.


Just get one, you will never look back !

281 posts

Ultimate Geek
Inactive user

  # 2109407 17-Oct-2018 10:09
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I built my own. Why are e-bikes so expensive?

2979 posts

Uber Geek

  # 2109411 17-Oct-2018 10:13
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My commuter: a Cannondale.  Without the electrical assist it'd be a reasonable hybrid/cross bike.  Shimano motor drive system.  Very smooth and responsive.  Disadvantage: power assist is limited to 25 km/h; thereafter, you're on your own.  Still, I love it.  Makes it possible for me to get some exercise (and save some petrol) while commuting while not arriving at work in an unpleasantly sweaty state.



Not sure on the details - but I understood that some of the Shimano units get firmware updates - I heard that Shimano had increased the maximum speed of some of the models via such an update. Think it was the person at Bikebarn that told me that the max speed on some had been raised from 25km/h to 30 something. Sorry wasnt really listening too hard.


I see there is this page :


Looks to be an app to allow updates etc to Shimano e-bike models - might be worth a look.

Nothing is impossible for the man who doesn't have to do it himself - A. H. Weiler

281 posts

Ultimate Geek
Inactive user

  # 2113466 24-Oct-2018 20:33
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irongarment: I built my own. Why are e-bikes so expensive?

Replying to myself to get some scintillating conversation. Today I noticed that the Warehouse has one electric bike for sale. It's a mountain bike style and costs $1299. It's not on their website.

Also Torpedo 7 (I know) have a range of e-bikes. The two cheapest ones are on special at $1399.

Still expensive, but not stupidly so.

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