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Old 22nd February 2021, 14:29   #61
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Re: E-Bikes (electric bicycle) : A comprehensive guide

Hey Folks
Very interesting and useful thread. I am now looking for an e-bike that I can transport to weekend getaways at resorts. I don't plan to use it within Bangalore city except for quick shopping errands. After a weeks research I have come up with the following check-list:

1. Hub drive
2. Front suspension
3. Spring loaded seats
4. Removeable Battery
5. Folding bike
6. 18" (folding) or <24" Rims (removeable front wheel, worst case)
7. Tubeless MTB Tyres
8. IP67 control panel and Electricals (rain proof)
9. Full (semi-cricle) MudGuard
10. Adjustable Handle Height
11. Adjustable Seat Height
12. Rear+Front Carrier accessories
13. Disc Brakes
14. OFF switch lock for Control Panel (so kids/miscreants cannot tamper with or switch on when parked outside)
17. Cut-Off Brakes ( automatically cut-off power everytime brakes applied)
18" Minimum 5-6 speed gears

The reason for 18" rim folding bike preference is ability to transport in car and carrying up and and down the apartment lift.

I was checking some online reviews of Hero Lectra series and simply could not fathom the stupidity of not having the control panel rated to IP67 - what drives such lack of judgement in a country that sees such heavy rains is a mystery to me. If I am going to be spending upwards of 20k for a bike I would not settle for one without it.

I have a question around item (9) - how effective are the straight-line mud-guards in Indian road conditions of muddy puddles? Are the round mud-guards easily available?
I haven't seen many modern bikes with a traditional mud-guard in ages and I have witnessed horrifying sights of unsuspecting bikers with lovely expensive clean sports wear with a gash of dirty road mud splattered vertically across their backs. The Indian market seems to be blindly following "phoren" trends of open wheels just like the oppressive closed shoe designs with unbreathable fabrics which are simply terrible Indian summers and more suited to cold countries that need to keep your feet protected from the biting cold. The no mud-guard trend is another fashion that similarly I cannot understand... (unless one is biking like an athlete)! Seems misplaced in our country...

Lastly point (6) - are removable front wheels theft proof or can a miscreant easily walk away with them when parked outside?

Last edited by Ragul : 22nd February 2021 at 14:37.
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Old 24th March 2021, 05:24   #62
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Re: E-Bikes (electric bicycle) : A comprehensive guide

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ragul View Post
Hey Folks
Very interesting and useful thread. I am now looking for an e-bike that I can transport to weekend getaways at resorts. I don't plan to use it within Bangalore city except for quick shopping errands. After a weeks research I have come up with the following check-list:

1. Hub drive
2. Front suspension
3. Spring loaded seats
4. Removeable Battery
5. Folding bike
6. 18" (folding) or <24" Rims (removeable front wheel, worst case)
7. Tubeless MTB Tyres
8. IP67 control panel and Electricals (rain proof)
9. Full (semi-cricle) MudGuard
10. Adjustable Handle Height
11. Adjustable Seat Height
12. Rear+Front Carrier accessories
13. Disc Brakes
14. OFF switch lock for Control Panel (so kids/miscreants cannot tamper with or switch on when parked outside)
17. Cut-Off Brakes ( automatically cut-off power everytime brakes applied)
18" Minimum 5-6 speed gears

The reason for 18" rim folding bike preference is ability to transport in car and carrying up and and down the apartment lift.

I was checking some online reviews of Hero Lectra series and simply could not fathom the stupidity of not having the control panel rated to IP67 - what drives such lack of judgement in a country that sees such heavy rains is a mystery to me. If I am going to be spending upwards of 20k for a bike I would not settle for one without it.

I have a question around item (9) - how effective are the straight-line mud-guards in Indian road conditions of muddy puddles? Are the round mud-guards easily available?
I haven't seen many modern bikes with a traditional mud-guard in ages and I have witnessed horrifying sights of unsuspecting bikers with lovely expensive clean sports wear with a gash of dirty road mud splattered vertically across their backs. The Indian market seems to be blindly following "phoren" trends of open wheels just like the oppressive closed shoe designs with unbreathable fabrics which are simply terrible Indian summers and more suited to cold countries that need to keep your feet protected from the biting cold. The no mud-guard trend is another fashion that similarly I cannot understand... (unless one is biking like an athlete)! Seems misplaced in our country...

Lastly point (6) - are removable front wheels theft proof or can a miscreant easily walk away with them when parked outside?
The Lectro would be my choice, primarily since it comes from a mainstream manufacturer and there is service support. If I were you, I would buy it at a retail outlet rather than online, that way you get to build a relationship for a rainy day.

1. All models come with Hub drive
2. Their Rs.35K model comes with front suspension
3. Spring loaded seats - These can be retrofitted on any bike, they are available after-market
4. This is something that you would have to live with. I think the battery is safer in the frame though charging it if you live in an apartment is going to be a challenge
5. It does not fold - Don't know if this is a deal breaker
6. Front wheel can be removed easily with the flick of a lever
7. Some models have thin tyres, some have MTB tyres but they are not tubeless. First time I am thinking of tubeless bicycle tyres, I assumed that there are no tubeless tyres available since most of them have a spoke rim
8. The panel is not that bad when considering water resistance, I watched a YouTube video from Maddycoco, he works with PowerDrift in Pune. That video demonstrates that the panel is resistant to rain and heavy washing. However, the company does not make such claims and yes, there are videos on YouTube where you have complaints of rain seeping into the panel. Hero has introduced a new e=delivery bike with a different panel, I think they would bring over that panel to the Lectro facelift that should be round the corner and the panel should be water-resistant
9. Mud-guards can be retrofitted
10. Front handle adjusts
11. Seat adjusts
12. Accessories are available and can be retro-fitted
13. All models come with front disk-brakes
14. Their 30K plus models come with RFID locks
15. All models have this feature
16. Gears I think are not that relevant on an e-bike since you have a motor. However 7 speed is available on their higher variants

Mudguards for me are a small issue, you can easily get a pair at a retail shop and have them fitted onto any cycle with a few adjustments. Its the rider's call, I like the no mud-guards look and I use alternative modes of transport if it is going to rain and in slush

My grouse is with regards to regenerative braking. For me, its a must for an electric cycle to have that. You can charge up your battery while the bike coasts downhill. Also, you should be able to charge the bike by pedalling. Something like, a battery should charge from zero to full in pedalling mode if say pedalling for X kilometres, that way you would never get 'stranded' and it would make more sense. The technology is out there, its either too expensive or Hero thinks the customer does not deserve it right now

Last edited by TheARUN : 24th March 2021 at 05:27.
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Old 24th March 2021, 12:50   #63
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Re: E-Bikes (electric bicycle) : A comprehensive guide

Quote:
Originally Posted by TheARUN View Post
1. All models come with Hub drive
16. Gears I think are not that relevant on an e-bike since you have a motor. However 7 speed is available on their higher variants
Thank you for the response. I made the original post as soon as I chanced upon this thread without reading it fully. Many wise experienced and knowledgeable posters here and now I changed my requirement to Mid-Drive with rear gear setup. The idea is to use the power only minimally and retain full function of a regular bike when I want to avoid sweating (like office commute) or in hot weather where one is unable to cool down even with the breeze hitting your sweat...
Quote:
4. This is something that you would have to live with. I think the battery is safer in the frame though charging it if you live in an apartment is going to be a challenge
Well this is a deal breaker for me. I want to carry the battery pack up to the apartment for charging.
Quote:
5. It does not fold - Don't know if this is a deal breaker
I need to work out where and how I am going to mount the bike on my open Gypsy then it will become clearer. Looking at some fabrication options to be combined with existing car-bike mounting products - either build a roof mount or attach inside the tailgate ...
Quote:
6. Front wheel can be removed easily with the flick of a lever
If not a folding bike - removeable front wheel will make transporting it easier. The wheels can be packed and secured separately in the back somewhere. But need to find theft-proofing workaround for when the bike is parked somewhere outside.
Quote:
8. The panel is not that bad when considering water resistance,... However, the company does not make such claims and yes, there are videos on YouTube where you have complaints of rain seeping into the panel.
As consumers purchasing IP6X rated products is now commonplace compared to a decade back. I wouldn't buy one without it.
Quote:
9. Mud-guards can be retrofitted...Mudguards for me are a small issue, you can easily get a pair at a retail shop and have them fitted onto any cycle with a few adjustments. Its the rider's call,
I am not sure why I assumed this - but I thought these bikes dont come with the holes for mounting stock full hemisphere mudguards. Perhaps other experienced bikers can chime in and confirm?
Quote:
My grouse is with regards to regenerative braking. For me, its a must for an electric cycle to have that. You can charge up your battery while the bike coasts downhill. Also, you should be able to charge the bike by pedalling. Something like, a battery should charge from zero to full in pedalling mode if say pedalling for X kilometres, that way you would never get 'stranded' and it would make more sense. The technology is out there, its either too expensive or Hero thinks the customer does not deserve it right now
Possibly more parts and more cost. For me I can accept the challenge of regular hard work of pedalling on that odd day that battery dies. Ofcourse when it feels like an emergency and this happens it would be awful but I can live with it.
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Old 25th March 2021, 15:20   #64
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Re: E-Bikes (electric bicycle) : A comprehensive guide

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ragul View Post
Hey Folks
Very interesting and useful thread. I am now looking for an e-bike that I can transport to weekend getaways at resorts. I don't plan to use it within Bangalore city except for quick shopping errands. After a weeks research I have come up with the following check-list:
https://www.google.com/url?sa=t&sour...2HeF4lUZsK4q-B

Showroom is on St Mark's road. If you go, ask them if it is really allowed on metro, as announced in the newspapers.

Last edited by proton : 25th March 2021 at 15:22.
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Old 25th March 2021, 16:08   #65
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Re: E-Bikes (electric bicycle) : A comprehensive guide

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Originally Posted by proton View Post
https://www.google.com/url?sa=t&sour...2HeF4lUZsK4q-B

Showroom is on St Mark's road. If you go, ask them if it is really allowed on metro, as announced in the newspapers.
96k LOL - I will look for something in the 35k range. But yeah showroom visits is a good idea to get primed up for the purchase.

Need to compile a list of all showrooms selling e-bikes and visit then one-by-one on weekends.
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Old 25th March 2021, 16:12   #66
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Re: E-Bikes (electric bicycle) : A comprehensive guide

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Originally Posted by Ragul View Post
96k LOL - I will look for something in the 35k range. But yeah showroom visits is a good idea to get primed up for the purchase.

Need to compile a list of all showrooms selling e-bikes and visit then one-by-one on weekends.
I bought a btwin foldable for 9k on OLX. Now I'm looking for a bafang middrive kit. But it costs 500usd!
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Old 13th April 2021, 03:07   #67
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Re: E-Bikes (electric bicycle) : A comprehensive guide

Hope all are staying safe. Some updates:

Update 1. Dad's custom replacement battery was delivered shortly after my last post. It was assembled from 52 BAK 2600 mAh cells in a 13x4 configuration, with a brand new BMS. The final cost was around ₹10,200 including shipping.

The vendor was supposed to do this with the BAK 2900 mAh cells, but reported stock issues at the last moment, so had to go for the smaller ones. Dad reported the range as around 45 km (instead of 60 km with the OEM battery, which was also built with generic Chinese cells).

The moral of this story is that custom battery packs are very much doable. Both generic and branded options are available, and you largely get what you pay for. If you have a requirement for 3-4 battery packs, it's absolutely worth investing in a spot welder and doing it yourself. This opens up vendor options for you, and you get more choice and better prices on the cells, and save the assembly charges.

I really wanted to do this, but couldn't justify it for just one battery pack. If you're looking for vendors, please DM and I could give you some leads (no commercial conflicts, maybe one day... ).

Update 2. A bill currently being considered by the US Congress offers a 30% subsidy for e-bikes.

https://www.businessinsider.com/elec...mocrats-2021-2

IMO, we should also explicitly expand FAME subsidies to cover this class. The con is that even with such a subsidy, ebikes are out of reach for 95% of folks. But this argument applies to all EVs, and at this stage, all adoption contributes towards establishing and bolstering the ecosystem of batteries/motors etc.

And from an individual budget perspective, getting an Activa + a nice e-bike instead of, say, an Ather 450X might be a more "fun" tradeoff (no offense to Ather folks - those are slick vehicles).

Quote:
Originally Posted by proton View Post
Thus seems to be an ebike with rebranded Bafang 450w middrive, as seen 1 min into the video:
I'm sorry I seem to have missed this.

This looks like a Tongsheng TDSZ2 36V, 250W motor.

https://www.alibaba.com/product-deta...821681177.html

This has a fan following because it has torque sensing - it can sense how hard you're pedalling and adjust assist according to that. The Bafang mid-drive only supports speed-based cutoffs, so this would be even more seamless in how it steps in and cuts off.

80K is very reasonable for a mid-drive, and the heart-rate based feedback sounds very interesting too.

Quote:
just interested in converting by btwin foldable into a configuration allowable on the metro. Looks like I have to go the hub motor route.
I'm not sure if you were able to do this. It might be harder to mod a foldable bicycle, the rims are usually weird non-standard sizes, and there isn't sufficient space on the frame for the peripherals. At these form factors, it's easier to do it in a factory.

An electric scooter might be an interesting form factor if foldability is desired for last-mile connectivity. Mini e-bikes are also a thing in China (Xiaomi QiCycle was very attractively priced). These are cheaper since you don't need a big battery etc. All sorts of interesting possibilities once the ecosystem emerges - no limit to how small a motor can be!

Edit: one more thing - dad seems to have acquired a notoriety in the neighbouring villages as "the uncle who cycles ridiculously fast". Took a year but not easy to build cred in Punjabi streets

Edit 2: Oops, missed an entire page of replies.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ragul View Post
I have a question around item (9) - how effective are the straight-line mud-guards in Indian road conditions of muddy puddles? Are the round mud-guards easily available?
Round mudguards tend to be a complicated business - availability, installation, and compatibility-wise.

You can get generic mudguards from Decathlon. Go for the biggest ones available that'll fit. The ones I got 3 years ago were marginally smaller, and I did get a trickle on my back now and then - although IIRC the trickle was because its fitting mechanism, as designed, was a little loose, and is addressable with some plastic drilling/ziptie hacks.

For my current e-bike, I got these mudguards called SKS Grand MOM and DAD. Pictures are available online to give you an idea of the size, I can confirm that they work perfectly fine in wet conditions.

Quote:
Lastly point (6) - are removable front wheels theft proof or can a miscreant easily walk away with them when parked outside?
The wheels are easily removable with just a flip of a lever - for easy repairability. For security of the parked bike, you should get a U-Lock with a cable, this system can secure both the wheels and the frame.

Quote:
Originally Posted by proton View Post
I bought a btwin foldable for 9k on OLX. Now I'm looking for a bafang middrive kit. But it costs 500usd!
Yes, mid drives run expensive. You should also make sure that the bottom bracket is compatible - I'm afraid that a foldable frame might have non-standard sizes for all these things. Hub drives are perfectly fine for 250W or so of power, if you can find a kit with the right rim size.

Last edited by anku94 : 13th April 2021 at 03:34.
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Old 9th July 2021, 16:36   #68
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Re: E-Bikes (electric bicycle) : A comprehensive guide

Can anyone please suggest an ebike under 40k, it will be used for commuting to office which is 8km away. Soon my office will be shifted to 14km away.In high pedal assist mode i guess i will reach office without much effort and sweating. I want have some fun while commuting so want to switch from motor cycle. But main reason is for fitness purposes i will take long route and low assist mode while returning.
After searching for a month i realised there is nothing good in indian market other than Hero lectro
which atleast promises some local support all other manufacturers have some shaddy website details.
I dont mind spending 60k if it was from Trek or giant but they dont have any models.
I dont have any particular requirements.
Currently i have shortlisted Hero c8, any thing better in india with local dealer support?? If not i will buy c8 in two weeks time.
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Old 27th July 2021, 19:44   #69
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Re: E-Bikes (electric bicycle) : A comprehensive guide

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Currently i have shortlisted Hero c8, any thing better in india with local dealer support?? If not i will buy c8 in two weeks time.
with similar requirements, I got the lectro C8 a few months ago.

Its quite fun to ride and arrive at your destination without sweating like a hog. However, its not as sturdily built to survive pothole ridden alleys or poorly laid village roads. Regular Montras selling at half the lectro's price are better built in my opinion.

If commuting within city and on good well paved roads, lectro C8 is a good option. Frankly I bought it only for Hero's name. The other competitors seem to have mostly online presence and are not heard about much less seen in my tier 3 city.

BTW, The electric boost is like a turbo kick and is highly addictive.
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Old 7th August 2021, 16:23   #70
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Re: E-Bikes (electric bicycle) : A comprehensive guide

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with similar requirements, I got the lectro C8 a few months ago.

Its quite fun to ride and arrive at your destination without sweating like a hog. However, its not as sturdily built to survive pothole ridden alleys or poorly laid village roads. Regular Montras selling at half the lectro's price are better built in my opinion.

If commuting within city and on good well paved roads, lectro C8 is a good option. Frankly I bought it only for Hero's name. The other competitors seem to have mostly online presence and are not heard about much less seen in my tier 3 city.

BTW, The electric boost is like a turbo kick and is highly addictive.
Hi, after waiting for one month for c8 stock i finally got the bike, but there was a twist, i got a new electro model called C7+, this model is not listed in hero website. New launches of hero electro are C7, C7+, C8i. Here c8i comes with RFID tag.
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Old 7th August 2021, 17:20   #71
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Re: E-Bikes (electric bicycle) : A comprehensive guide

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Originally Posted by jpm View Post
If commuting within city and on good well paved roads, lectro C8 is a good option. Frankly I bought it only for Hero's name. The other competitors seem to have mostly online presence and are not heard about much less seen in my tier 3 city.

BTW, The electric boost is like a turbo kick and is highly addictive.
Did your bike bread down or suffer excessive wear and tear after riding bumpy roads? I am looking for an electric bike for semi-off-road use.
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Old 10th August 2021, 00:01   #72
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Re: E-Bikes (electric bicycle) : A comprehensive guide

Hi all - great to see a new section for bicycles!

I've just been looking around and seeing what's available since a friend asked me what to buy. There seem to be a lot of small-time assemblers making decent-looking e-bikes in the ~40k range.

In my opinion, online-only vs known brand isn't that big a deal, if you're somewhat DIY-inclined. It's pretty hard to fry a controller or a motor, most other parts are standard.

The one thing that does matter is the style of battery used. If the battery uses some proprietary package, it might be hard to change it later on. If the battery assembly looks like it can be taken apart, you can get someone to replace the innards (cells/BMS).

Most of the other features are upto you/subjective (apps etc).

Do gears matter? If you're in a fairly flat city, the assist takes care of most gear-ly responsibilities. But if it's fairly hilly, gears in addition to assist levels would be useful.

I'm dumping some brand names I've found that are still available. I have no experience with them, please consider this list only as a starting point.

1. Hero Lectro
2. https://nexzu.in/shop/
3. https://toutche.com/heileoM100.html
4. https://www.outdoors91.com/meraki
5. https://pureev.in/etron/
6. https://www.emotorad.com/
7. Triad
8. Pedaleze
9. WaltX
10. Spero
11. E-Adicct

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ragul View Post
Did your bike bread down or suffer excessive wear and tear after riding bumpy roads? I am looking for an electric bike for semi-off-road use.
I have some experience in this area.

The motor can tolerate off-roading, no big deal. It will provide whatever power it can and cut off after. The motor is waterproofed by the factory/Bafang, battery pack waterproofness depends, but I never had an issue leaving mine in the rain.

What makes the bike more/less off-roady is the rest of the frame.

1. You want at least a front suspension. Full suspension MTBs are pretty expensive, and not necessary for moderate off-roading.

2. You want grippy trail tires with a thick tread. Fatter the better for offroading, but the frame won't be able to accomodate tires beyond a limit. This is by far the most important thing. I keep 3 pairs around, a studded pair for driving in winter/snowy conditions, a semi-slick pair for regular road use, and a chunky trail pair that gives me a ridiculous amount of grip on gravel etc. I'd call, say, 26" x 2.25" reasonably fat.

3. Gears are good to have. Torque is useful to get through tight spots when off-roading.

4. Power is good to have. 250W is the legal limit for Indian/European roads, but that doesn't apply to offroad conditions. Depending on your budget and willingness to go bonkers, motors upto 2KW are available.

But the simple answer is that it'll do just fine. Get something with gears and a front suspension, and if you find that you need more traction, get a different pair of tires.

Last edited by anku94 : 10th August 2021 at 00:03.
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Old 1st October 2021, 23:06   #73
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Re: E-Bikes (electric bicycle) : A comprehensive guide

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Hope all are staying safe. Some updates:
You seem to be saying the Tongsheng TDSZ2 has cadence sensing. That's so cool. I think Pedaleze has stopped production. The 80 k price tag was probably too rich for the market.

The problem with hub drives seem to be that they are prone to burn out when stressed on uphill climbs.

I'm probably overthinking the issue. Probably better to start out with the simple and economical as solutions first. Now to look for a donor bicycle!

Last edited by proton : 1st October 2021 at 23:16.
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Old 23rd May 2022, 15:48   #74
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Re: E-Bikes (electric bicycle) : A comprehensive guide

Seems the Pedaleze is back in production post the covid lockdowns. I recently reached out to them and in fact they are running a discount on the 02 range. I placed an order last week and am awaiting delivery. I will post my experience once i receive the cycle and start using it.
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Old 8th June 2022, 00:11   #75
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Re: E-Bikes (electric bicycle) : A comprehensive guide

Hi all, I recently got employed at a college near my home. It's about 5 mins away by car and it takes 12 minutes or thereabouts to walk. Since it's a very short distance, I feel guilty driving my current vehicle (Hyundai Creta) to and from the college since its such a short drive. I was looking at E-Bikes as a way to:
  • Keep myself in shape (I'm 80kgs currently - have gained about 16kgs during the Pandemic and subsequent lockdowns)
  • Reduce fuel wastage driving such a short distance.

Having become accustomed to living a sedentary lifestyle, I feel that driving a normal cycle would be hard for me and the pedal assist feature in E-Bike's might also encourage me to cycle further and explore the lush greenery in our neck of the woods. With that out of the way, can our esteemed members kindly help me in the search for a good beginner E-Bike? Here is my list of requirements:
  • Budget - Rupees 30,000 - 50,000
  • Range - 30-50 kms (using pedal assist) - Detachable Battery would be nice since I can swap it easily when it starts to degrade
  • Seating Comfort - Necessary since I haven't ridden bicycles since my school days. A retrofit would also be acceptable but I live in a very small rural town so options are limited - I might have to go the DIY route.
  • Water Resistance - Would be happy if battery and the controls offered some level of water resistance.
  • Tyres - Would prefer fatter ones since the roads aren't that well maintained in my neck of the woods
  • Suspension - I read some reviews that said front suspension is necessary so just putting it on here.
  • Brakes - Okay with anything in this department
  • Accessories - Availability of accessories like mud guards, etc. would be a boon

I think that would be about it. Thank you everyone
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