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Electric scooter or bike electric assist recommendations

Posted: Wed Apr 07, 2021 6:24 pm
by sophie
As I live in a very hilly area and I'm not getting any younger, I'm a little tired of climbing long steep hills on a bike. My usual route includes a stretch of about 0.4 miles with an elevation gain of about 200 feet, and an incline that's around 20 degrees at its steepest. Yeah ok it's not Mount Everest, but to a woman getting close to age 60 it's a big deal. So, I'm looking for an electric-powered option. Any recommendations?

- Lightweight. There's a practical maximum of around 30 lbs that I'm willing to deal with. I have to be able to carry the bike or scooter up and down a flight of stairs to get between my apartment and the great outdoors, plus carry or push it up that hill if need be. Similarly, if I want to take it on the subway there are generally a couple of flights of stairs involved, plus lifting it over the turnstiles.

- Can motor up a hill. Fine if it's 3 mph or whatever, just have to get it up there.

- Is safe going downhill (i.e. has to have good brakes and a stable ride).

- Reliability is important. I don't want one that's going to self destruct after a few weeks like a lot of Amazon reviewers report with some of the more popular brands. The photos of people all banged up and in hospitals due to defective designs were especially scary.

Option 1: lightweight electric kit for the bike (a brompton). The problem with this is that it will probably add too much weight - last I looked into this it would make the bike about 50 lbs. Totally out of the question. I found there is a kit that weighs only about 3 kg, but it's pricey and perennially out of stock.

Option 2: an electric scooter. The ones that can handle the hill and would be reliable are priced pretty high and of course are way over my weight limit, as in they're 60-100 lbs.

I've been looking at the GoTrax XR, Hiboy S2, or Xiaomi Mi. None of them sound all that great.

Just wondering what the board recommends here!

Re: Electric scooter or bike electric assist recommendations

Posted: Wed Apr 07, 2021 6:32 pm
by Kriegsspiel
I'd try Endless Sphere if you don't get any takers here. I think electric bikes are cool, but nothing I like would be something you would want to carry around at all.

Re: Electric scooter or bike electric assist recommendations

Posted: Wed Apr 07, 2021 7:13 pm
by flyingpylon
I’d like to help but my e-bike is 65 lbs! That 30 lb limit might be tough to meet.

Here are some possibilities, but I don’t have experience with any of them: https://boxercycles.com/lightweight-electric-bike/

Endless Sphere is a great forum but the discussions can get into deep technical detail pretty quickly.

Good luck, e-bikes are fun!

Re: Electric scooter or bike electric assist recommendations

Posted: Wed Apr 07, 2021 7:47 pm
by I Shrugged
I've put a kit onto one bike. And owned a different clunky one.

I used to want to electrify a Downtube Nova. I know there were people on Endless Sphere who had done them. I guarantee you there is someone in NYC who does this type of thing. Here is the Nova:

https://www.downtube.com/downtube-nova- ... ding-bike/

Re: Electric scooter or bike electric assist recommendations

Posted: Wed Apr 07, 2021 8:48 pm
by Cortopassi
I have had a mid drive motor, Bafang BBS02 on my bike for ~3 years.

https://www.bafangusadirect.com/bafang- ... y-p/60.htm

750W, but as expected it does make it heavier. It happens to take the same batteries that power my Ego mower, so I was able to dual use the batteries and save $400. I ride to work every day that I can over 30 degrees. I have topped it out at 32MPH, but typically go 18 or so on my way to work, with pedal assist, so I am getting some exercise. But It will do the same speed and more just with throttle so I can be lazy if I want.

I was excited about GeoOrbital for the ease a few years ago, but going to their website, https://geoo.com/, still seems that they aren't really currently selling them.

Re: Electric scooter or bike electric assist recommendations

Posted: Wed Apr 07, 2021 9:10 pm
by sophie
That electric conversion kit (Swytch) sounds like a great addition to my existing bike and lightweight, but it's got a 6 - 9 month waiting list!

Back to thinking an electric scooter would be a nice addition to my closet in the meantime. Just for short, quick trips, meaning...low cost and doesn't have to be super powered as I wouldn't really want to go faster than 10 mph on it anyway. So I guess I'll take a flyer on the Gotrax (decent, cheap, but very much at your own risk because the company won't help you if it's defective).