Ride the Rockies, Stories from an electric cyclist...

Discussions related to motors other than hub motors.
This includes R/C motors, botttom bracket, roller and geared drives.

Ride the Rockies, Stories from an electric cyclist...

Postby Josh K. » Sun Mar 18, 2012 11:46 pm

Hi Folks,

We have signed up for the Ride the Rockies Event this year. It's a 444 mile 6 day ride through the mountains. http://ridetherockies.com/

I will be riding my converted Rans Stratus, with our Rocha Mid drive design. It's a large Astroflight motor, coupled up to a Boston gear reduction, pushing a double freewheel applying the power through a 9 speed derailleur system. We will run it at 24 volts, and it currently carries 20 amp hours of lithum ion batteries from A123. I think we will add another 20 amp hours in a Bob trailer behind my ride, to give me a solid 100 mile range.

Anyone else signed up for this great event? I am looking for a couple partners in crime, as we should have around 3,000 roadies, that's 1,999 roadies and I signed up, and around 1,000 pirates who join in for the ride without signing up.

This ride will have some serious technical riding up mountain passes, and long downhill runs. Lot's of folks camping, sharing stories, and information. The best part for me, is that it ends up in our home town, Fort Collins, where we will have a table set up, and some of our other
E bike designs out on display.

I wonder how This E bike will be accepted in a group of 3,000 roadies? I believe that I have right to ride, as it is a true 750 watt assist, I pedal, and it helps me to be able to participate...Ideas?
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Re: Ride the Rockies, Rocha mid drive ride...

Postby Josh K. » Sun Mar 18, 2012 11:57 pm

Here are a couple of photos of our first Rocha mid drive motor systems made up in January, of 2007. It's developed a bit more since then, but is very similar to these. Mainly, the electronics have been improved, and Ron developed a better double clutch system too.

I am thinking about developing a new full blown recumbent design, from the ground up, as an electric human hybrid. I love the way these feel with a low center of gravity, plenty of power, and range.

This Ride the Rockies event should really show the world that this combination of components has what it takes to get one, from town to town, wherever you live. Hopefully, we can get some press on this event! Peace, Josh K.
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Climbed Mnt. Washington twice, Pikes peak twice, PIR, First Electric Cyclist to Ride the Rockies 2012, All on handbuilt pedal assist E bikes. Indiegogo/RunAbout Cycles
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Re: Ride the Rockies, Rocha mid drive ride...

Postby Josh K. » Mon Mar 19, 2012 12:18 am

Here is a cute one that we built up once, using a neat bottom bracket drive system...

These ride great, and really help us to understand that it's the right way to go, by running the power through the derailleur system...

Nowadays, we like the Astroflight motors, and helical cut gear boxes to keep the noise down, and efficiencies up.

I am hoping to see a lot of this type of vehicle designed, produced and raced in the future. In My opinion, it's the future of E bike racing.

We are not apposed to tadpole trikes, with these systems as well, but, for overall efficiency, I don't think you can beat our race bike design.
Windwrap Fairing, full blown recumbent, Rocha Mid drive, 9 speed derailleur, lithium ion batteries, wind sock, large chainring...and a rider who can mash some pedals...

Who is ready to come out, and ride the rockies with me. Come on out, and let's set some records, draw a line in the sand, and start some racing...

Josh K.
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Co-teacher at electric bike mechanic's certification, Interbike 2013 LEVA
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Climbed Mnt. Washington twice, Pikes peak twice, PIR, First Electric Cyclist to Ride the Rockies 2012, All on handbuilt pedal assist E bikes. Indiegogo/RunAbout Cycles
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Re: Ride the Rockies, Rocha mid drive ride...

Postby Josh K. » Mon Mar 19, 2012 12:23 am

Sneak Peak at a new frame design coming together...Sassy-

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Re: Ride the Rockies, Rocha mid drive ride...

Postby John in CR » Mon Mar 19, 2012 3:45 am

Cool stuff Josh. I'm curious about how well those "socks" work. Do you have any comparative consumption numbers with and without the sock?
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Re: Ride the Rockies, Rocha mid drive ride...

Postby Whiplash » Mon Mar 19, 2012 3:02 pm

This sounds like a fun ride! Wish I could afford to double up my batts and take the time off and give it a try! Have fun and good luck!
Power is a fascinating thing, the more you have, the more you want, but the real power is having the restraint not to use it all at once...............Um...Yeah..

The harder you work.....The luckier you get!!

"People who say it can't be done are often interrupted by those that have already figured out how to do it!"

Email me @ currentcycles@gmail.com
OR check out http://www.CurrentCycles.net
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Re: Ride the Rockies, Rocha mid drive ride...

Postby ohzee » Mon Mar 19, 2012 3:11 pm

I liked the bike I think it looks great. Good luck on the hope you get a bunch of good publicity.
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Re: Ride the Rockies, Rocha mid drive ride...

Postby Josh K. » Mon Mar 26, 2012 11:25 pm

Hey, thanks folks.

Guess what, I just joined another Ride, It's a 100 mile ride for motorcyclists, called realities ride.

They invited me to ride with them, after last year, when I stopped by, and roasted a few rear tires in the burn out pit.

Not many of them have ever seen an electric blowing smoke off an E tek and 50 volts...Good fun.

I think of it as a good training ride for ride the Rockies, which is going to be an Epic ride for me. 442 miles, 25,000 feet of vertical climb
over 5 days of riding. This is going to be big.

Just got my new Cycle Analyst mounted up, and running this weekend. Great new screen, big and lit up. Thanks guys!

Peace, Josh K.
2814 West Vine Dr. Fort Collins, CO 80521
Custom E bike builds for E bike Companies, Racers, And Enthusiasts.
Co-teacher at electric bike mechanic's certification, Interbike 2013 LEVA
http://www.electric-cycle.com http://www.runaboutcyclesinc.com
Climbed Mnt. Washington twice, Pikes peak twice, PIR, First Electric Cyclist to Ride the Rockies 2012, All on handbuilt pedal assist E bikes. Indiegogo/RunAbout Cycles
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Re: Ride the Rockies, Rocha mid drive ride...

Postby Rassy » Tue Mar 27, 2012 12:03 am

I've participated in 7 organized bicycle rides in the last four years. My rides have included a recumbent with a pusher trailer, the same recumbent with a front hub motor, my tadpole with a pusher trailer, and the tadpole with the mid-drive. No one has ever challenged my right to ride, but my backup plan is to play the age card. Mostly, I think they are happy just to get the entry fee.

Mostly I just go for the 50 mile or 100K ride and pedal along with one or more pedal only buds. I don't challenge the pedalers, but occasionaly pass a few going up the hills, my buddy overheard one say "what's with that old guy on the recumbent with the lunch box on the rack?". There are always a number of pedalers that are quite interested in the electric assist and lithium batteries.

I hope my 100% completion rate continues on May 5 at the "Tour of the Unknown Coast" in Northern California.

Good luck on your "Ride the Rockies" ride Josh. How do you plan to handle the battery charging?
-Rassy-
Two Tadpole Trikes, 6X10 9C mid drive, NuVinci CVT Auto Shift, 48V LiFePO4
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Re: Ride the Rockies, Rocha mid drive ride...

Postby Josh K. » Fri Mar 30, 2012 11:02 am

Hey Folks,

We go from town to town, and I will be able to plug in at night, at the local schools, where we camp...

I was hoping to use my Bob trailer, but it looks like no trailers in the rules.

Here is a new frame that I just completed building, and am getting into the shop for paint today.

Peace, Josh K.
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Last edited by Josh K. on Sun Jun 17, 2012 12:46 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Co-teacher at electric bike mechanic's certification, Interbike 2013 LEVA
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Climbed Mnt. Washington twice, Pikes peak twice, PIR, First Electric Cyclist to Ride the Rockies 2012, All on handbuilt pedal assist E bikes. Indiegogo/RunAbout Cycles
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Re: Ride the Rockies, Rocha mid drive ride...

Postby Josh K. » Fri Apr 06, 2012 12:21 am

Hey Folks,

Here is a photo of our new Electric Mountain bike. It is on display at the Art of the Bicycle III event in Fort Collins for the next two weekends.

We have decided to use the Mountain Drive, that is a pedal puller design, vs the mid drive. It mounted up really well, and has nice clearance.

One of our guys at the shop signed for some batteries today, so we know that our Extra Energy has come in.

The Fuel meter is mounted up, the drivetrain is dialed. Now to show it to the public for a few days, before bringing it back to the shop,
and doing the final wiring.

I have decided that this is the bike that I am going to use on the Ride the Rockies event this June. Can't even wait to take this puppy out and on a trail...

Peace, Josh K.
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Climbed Mnt. Washington twice, Pikes peak twice, PIR, First Electric Cyclist to Ride the Rockies 2012, All on handbuilt pedal assist E bikes. Indiegogo/RunAbout Cycles
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Re: Ride the Rockies, Rocha mid drive ride...

Postby bzhwindtalker » Fri Apr 06, 2012 1:33 am

Awesome bike Josh! The drive fits the bike really well, I can't wait to see how the double tube frame will hold the battery!

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Re: Ride the Rockies, Rocha mid drive ride...

Postby Josh K. » Thu Apr 12, 2012 7:00 pm

Hey thanks,

So, we are showing the bike for one more weekend, and then I can get it back to the Bat Cave.

I have a new Castle Creations controller to install, with a new BEC, and Cycle Analyst fuel meter.

Then, I can start getting our first test rides in, most likely on the Blue Sky Trail, here in Fort Collins, Colorado.

We have a new charger coming in for the 24 volt system. I gotta tie this system together with some clean wiring.

Some of my buddies want to get out and ride too. One is on an
Optibike, and the other is testing out a new one wheel pusher trailer...More to come.

We will post some photos of our rides soon. It's soo nice out here these days, 70 degrees, sunny, dry...life is good.

Here is our Crew, testing some machines last year. I actually did surprisingly well with this Lee Ioccoca Bike E, with the
24 volt rear hub motor, and okay front suspension...Ken's Optibike was the winner, as the most complete, real E bike
out there, and John Bidwell's home made prototypes were good fun, with some monster power. That E tek on 24 volts
is hard to beat for raw brute force in climbing. But, I guess he wrote the book, Secrets of El ninja, and the Cheatah,so
go figure. Motorcycle racing backgrounds defiantly help in the creating of new E bikes. Now to real them in, and get
them to play by the rules of engagement, with a 750 watt max limit. Then, people start using the right scale metal,

Peace, Josh K.
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Re: Ride the Rockies, Rocha mid drive ride...

Postby Josh K. » Mon May 21, 2012 10:04 pm

Hi Folks,

Well, we have a new Electric Mountain Climber, and she is running sweet!

We went 47 miles, up 3,500 ft, in 3.5 hours, round trip. This system ran at 10 watt hours per mile folks, and that is the best that we have done since 1998 when I first got into this. I averaged 10 miles an hour up a 12% incline, for 5 miles during last weeks ride.

The 8 speed Alfine hub is shifting nicely. The Castle Controller allows me to meter my fuel use. The Cycle Analyst is reading out the data consistently. 500 watts for 50 miles, average speed at 14 mph, max speed at 42, min Voltage at 22. Batteries are producing 20 amps, as expected from Elite Power solutions. Charger is running well, 6 amp, and down to a trickle till the morning.

I am looking forward to Ride the rockies now, as the new bike is testing out well. I still have yet to add another battery pack, for my full 1,000 watt hours of available energy, but that is coming soon. Here is a photo of our new Mountain Climber. Peace, Josh K.
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Re: Ride the Rockies, Rocha mid drive ride...

Postby Josh K. » Sun Jun 10, 2012 6:11 pm

Hi Folks,

Had a great day today, first day of Ride the rockies. 79 miles, 40 amp hours of go go juice, on 24 volts.

Passed absolutely hundreds and hundreds of roadies today, climbing hill after hill, and into the mountains. Awesome Views, great weather.

I rode a little harder than I probably should have today, being a little confident with the extra energy...Haven't read the stats yet, But I will record them
and post them when I am done.

The Rocha Mountain drive worked flawlessly today, allowing me to stomp up these monster hills. I think we turned some heads in the roady world, for sure.

Five more days to go, before we descend into Fort Collins on Friday the 15th. Photos and story to come. Peace, Josh K.

PS, the time has come to develop a working variable 28 volt generator hub, with no drag when riding, and perhaps 1-6 amp charging, rider controlled for
these 12 mile plus down hills. I just can't waste this extra energy any longer. I have to be able to use some of this excess speed to go further.

JK.
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Re: Ride the Rockies, Rocha mid drive ride...

Postby Warren » Wed Jun 13, 2012 9:32 am

Josh,

"Had a great day today, first day of Ride the Rockies. 79 miles, 40 amp hours of go go juice, on 24 volts."

Great stuff. If you used 80% DoD, you averaged 10.5 Wh/mi. That is terrific in mountainous terrain. What was your average speed?

"Passed absolutely hundreds and hundreds of roadies today, climbing hill after hill, and into the mountains...I think we turned some heads in the roady world, for sure."

Don't count on it! When I was fit and kickin' ass, I thought motor assist was for losers. There are bicycle racers/nuts, and there are motorcycle racers/nuts. Even though combining the two makes perfect sense, and produces the most efficient, and practical vehicle possible, you will be perceived as a crackpot. Remember Safe's EBRR?

Can't wait for more pictures and stats!

Thanks, Warren
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Re: Ride the Rockies, Rocha mid drive ride...

Postby Josh K. » Sat Jun 16, 2012 11:02 pm

Hi Folks,

Just got back from Ride the Rockies, 2012. We rode 444 miles over 5 mountain, with 25,000 feet of vertical climbing. This was by far,
the Best Electric Bike riding that I have ever done, Bar none. Not only was it fun to be the first Electric bike rider to do Ride the Rockies,
but it was great to be testing the very best E bike that we have ever designed, hand built, and ridden. I have never had the experience,
of riding past hundreds of roadies and hour, at three times their speed, up the longest hill climbs around. We had the best weather, sunny
and warm, light winds, and just a touch of frost on our tents every morning!

Here is a photo of our new Electric Mountain Touring bike, Balto, on top of Independence pass, at 12,000 feet. :mrgreen:
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Climbed Mnt. Washington twice, Pikes peak twice, PIR, First Electric Cyclist to Ride the Rockies 2012, All on handbuilt pedal assist E bikes. Indiegogo/RunAbout Cycles
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Re: Ride the Rockies, Rocha mid drive ride...

Postby Josh K. » Sat Jun 16, 2012 11:14 pm

This ride was one of the longest and most challenging rides of my life. It's really like riding Pikes Peak several times!
Using this electric assist is a life saver for me, with my old skiers knees, and breathing challenges in high altitudes, the
extra energy helped kick the pedals, and climb mountain after mountain, no problem. For 10 cents worth of electricity, I
can go over 100 miles, with a couple thousand feet of elevation, that is up, and down! With this power, I was able to scale
these mountains at 3 times the speed of the average Ride the Rockies Rider, going 4-5 miles, as I smoked past em, at 14...
This of course gave me more time to smell the flowers, take amazing photos, and enjoy the experience. Now, I believe
that electric assist is the future for many types of cyclists, recreational, transportation, racing, you name it.

Here is a photo that I took along the way. This was a common view for all of us, riding down hill away from the mountain,
for 10-20 miles at a time! Josh K.
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Re: Ride the Rockies, Rocha mid drive ride...

Postby Josh K. » Sat Jun 16, 2012 11:30 pm

Okay, Do you like the Mountains? I do, I absolutely love the fresh air, the deep Pine forest, the snow, the flowing streams...

Here are a couple of the shots of some of the views that we saw, day after day, mountain pass after Mountain...

These are near Hermits Rest stop, Between Gunnison, and Hotchkiss, and Independence pass. Absolutely thousands of feet up
and above where I live at 5,000 ft in Fort Collins, Colorado.

Peace, Josh K.
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Re: Ride the Rockies, Rocha mid drive ride...

Postby deVries » Sun Jun 17, 2012 12:02 am

This is already a classic Josh that I hope to do someday too! :D

Really a beautifully designed ebike too. So streamlined, slick, and simple, yet lightweight too! Beautiful design.

What is the wheelbase? Is that a RonZ drive on it or ?

Thanks for posting some pics. Post more if you got any. How were you received by the pedal'ers? :mrgreen:

Did you carry your camping gear? Trailer or was there SAG wagon service?
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Re: Ride the Rockies, Rocha mid drive ride...

Postby Josh K. » Sun Jun 17, 2012 12:08 am

Hi Folks,

Okay, Just the Facts, Here are the stats:

Day one, Gunnison to Hotchkiss
81.84 Miles
39.75 Amp hours
989 Watt Hours
12.1 Watt hours Per mile
39 MPH max speed
17 MPH Average Speed !
4 hours, 42 Min
3,077 ft climb.

Day Two, Hotchkiss to Carbondale
70.68 Miles
32.68 Amp Hours
827 watt hours
11.7 watt hours per mile
37 MPH top speed
15.8 Average speed
4 hours, 28 Min.
3,901 ft. climb.

Day Three, Carbondale to Leadville
69.79 Miles
40.33 Amp hours
1,009 watt hours
14.5 watt hours per mile
42 MPH top speed
14.5 Average speed
4 hours, 48 Min.
7, 379 ft. Climb!

Day four, Leadville to Granby
99.52 miles
37.15 Amp Hours
949 watt hours
9.5 watt hours per mile !
49 MPH top speed
15 MPH Average speed
6 hours, 19 Min
43 amp max draw
4,058 ft climb

Day Five, Granby to Estes Park
67.9 Miles
36.7 Amp Hours
921 watt hours
13.6 watt hours per mile
35 mph top speed
14 mph average speed
4 hours, 37 Min
57 max amp draw
4,780 ft climb

Day Six, Estes Park to Fort Collins
52.5 Miles
26.65 Amp hours
672.21 watt hours
12.8 watt hours per mile
48 MPH max speed
2 hours, 15 Min
55 amp max draw
1,742 foot climb

Day seven, Ft Collins to Bed
Slept 12 hours
Ate three steaks
Drank two Shakes
Drank three Gallons of water
Applied Aloe for one hour
Took three hour shower
Slept for another 3 hours
Ate another lunch...
Slept, Ate, and began to write !...

Bike, New Mountain Touring bike, "Balto"- 24 volt, 40 amp hour, lithium iron Phosphate, A123, and Elite power solutions.
Motor Drive, New Rocha Mountain Drive, Astro Motor, Castle Controller, Pedal Puller, Cadence Boost technologies.
Drivetrain, 8 speed Alfine rear hub, Freewheeling Crank, platform Pedals
Frame, 4130 Cromoly steel frame, made here in the USA, Fort Collins, Colorado. By, Josh Kerson, RunAbout Cycles Inc.
Wheels, 32 spoke, DT Swiss, 3 cross, hand laced at our shop, Tires, Continental Traffics, 75 PSI, on /off road, thorn proof tubes.
Rider, Josh Kerson, 42 years old, ex mountain bike racer, washed up extreme skier, with shot knees, and a will to ride.
Support, Elana Hurwitz, life partner, business partner, designer, and camp site builder...
Ron Rocha, Electrical Engineer, designer of Pedal puller system, with needs input by bike builder, Josh K.

Peace, Josh K. More info? Please Check out our new website at http://www.runaboutcycles.com
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Climbed Mnt. Washington twice, Pikes peak twice, PIR, First Electric Cyclist to Ride the Rockies 2012, All on handbuilt pedal assist E bikes. Indiegogo/RunAbout Cycles
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Re: Ride the Rockies, Rocha Mountain Drive Test Ride 2012

Postby deVries » Sun Jun 17, 2012 12:45 am

Those are really amazingly fantastic efficiency stats. Proof of concept: Done! :D
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Re: Ride the Rockies, Rocha Mountain Drive, Test Ride 2012

Postby Josh K. » Sun Jun 17, 2012 1:17 am

Hi folks,

Here is a Map of Ride the Rockies, with some elevations to see what I am talking about here...

Special thanks to those who have provided this information. Ride the Rockies, as an organization is fantastic, and we really appreciate
the opportunity to ride with you. The Eight State Troopers who escorted us were really helpful in keeping the Diesel Bomber at bay.
The venues were classic, the routs were Soo well marked out. the Saying on the road were fun, and helpful during long, Long climbs.
The Aid stations, every 12-15 miles were wonderful, great water Supply, Foods, snacks, Mechanical Support, and More! Nice DJ at
Lunch. We thank you kindly. Peace, Josh K.
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RidetheRockies_map12x.jpg
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2814 West Vine Dr. Fort Collins, CO 80521
Custom E bike builds for E bike Companies, Racers, And Enthusiasts.
Co-teacher at electric bike mechanic's certification, Interbike 2013 LEVA
http://www.electric-cycle.com http://www.runaboutcyclesinc.com
Climbed Mnt. Washington twice, Pikes peak twice, PIR, First Electric Cyclist to Ride the Rockies 2012, All on handbuilt pedal assist E bikes. Indiegogo/RunAbout Cycles
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Re: Ride the Rockies, Rocha Mountain Drive, Test Ride 2012

Postby adrian_sm » Sun Jun 17, 2012 7:06 am

Josh,

First up. Love the frame lines. Looks damn sweet.

Second up. I am so jealous at that amazing ride. What an awesome event, and beautiful scenery.

Third. Awesome stats. It really shows what a capable drive you & Ron have developed. I wish you all the best in your endeavours.

- Adrian
Build #1 ~28kg ~ 700w Avanti Hardtail Crystalyte 408, 48V10Ah Headway. ~5500 kms to date. (retired)
Build #2 ~30kg ~2000w Giant AC Dually Crystalyte 408, 48V10Ah Headway + 6s10Ah LiPo = 70V. ~15000 kms to date [SOLD]
Build #3 ~13kg ~2000w Commuter Booster <1kg Friction Drive in Beta testing (www.commuterbooster.com)
Build #??? ~21kg ~1500w Adrian's Bafang BPM Hardtail MTB Bafang BPM code12, 15s LiPo, ~40kph, ~30kms
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Re: Ride the Rockies, Rocha mid drive ride...

Postby Warren » Sun Jun 17, 2012 8:23 am

Josh,

Thanks for the pix and stats. Great ride, great bike.

"Here is a photo that I took along the way. This was a common view for all of us, riding down hill away from the mountain,
for 10-20 miles at a time!"

Wait! Is that a bike path?

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