Per the e-bike faq discussion,
I've written an outline.
Question/format suggestion? I'm planning on giving each bold section to a different person, who can write the responses, and if he or she so wishes, append more questions and/or reorganize their section. Each section should logically follow the one before, and lead to the one after.
What's e-biking, and why would I want to ride a bike with a motor on it?
o An ebike sounds like a moped with pedals, is e-biking legal?
o How does the addition of a motor affect pedaling? Can I still ride the bike normally?
OK, I'm interested. So what are my options for an ebike?
o Which is better for me, a pre-built e-bike, or a kit that modifies a regular bike?
o Where do I buy these kits and pre-built bikes?
o How much do these kits and bikes normally cost?
o Is the bike I already own or intend to buy a good candidate for conversion with a kit?
What are the basic components particular to an ebike?
o How reliable are these parts?
o Where do I get replacements if something breaks?
o How much power (watts) will I need?
o What does do those numbers used to describe to the motor, controller, and batteries mean?
o What's best for me, a "brushed" motor and controller, or a "brushless" motor and controller?
As far as the kits go, which is better for me, a single-speed hubmotor, or a motor that sends power through the gears and chains?
How do I choose between the kits that drive through the chain and gears?
How do I choose between all the different hubmotors?
What happens when I need to replace the batteries on my ebike?
o How can I tell how much lifespan my batteries have left?
o What's the difference between these different battery types?
o Do I have to buy replacement batteries from the place I bought the kit or pre-built bike?
o Where are the best sources for ebike battery packs?
o What if I want more range? Can I add more batteries?
What if I want more performance out of my ebike than the kit or pre-built bike came with?
What are some good accessories for my ebike?