Howdy folks, I don't come here often if you can tell by my post count.
A few years ago, I built an electric bike out of a 1996 Marin mountain bike I got off of craigslist and used it to commute to where I work. I used one of those cheap 1000w front wheel kits from ebay and it worked great. In fact as far as I know, it continues to work to this day.
Long story short, I ended up selling the bike for more than I paid to build it. I was riding around town one day and this guy saw me ebike and said it was really cool, he wondered if he could buy it. I shot out a price of "I don't know, $1000?".
For some reason this man said yes
. (It costs me probably $400 to build the entire thing). I'm not sure if this guy just didn't know what ebikes cost, or if he just didn't care. Doesn't matter to me. I just made a profit off of something I used every day for the past 2 years.
It's been a month now, and as far as I know, the bike is still working for him. I now have been driving my car to work instead, but that's not nearly as much fun now is it?
Time to build another ebike!
Since i'm just a commuter (no off road or huge hills to climb for me) those cheap ebay kits seem to work fine for my purposes. My commute is 10 miles round trip on mostly flat roads, so I have already bought another rear wheel 1000w kit from ebay since it worked last time, and will likely work again.
Probably looking to spend no more than $100 on the "donor" bike for conversion itself. That's why I'm going used.
off to craigslist we go!
For reference, I am looking for a 26" mountain bike with a nice triangular space in the frame to mount my new battery, so I try to look for older mountain bikes as they tend to have larger triangular frames. I also live in the Plymouth-canton area in Michigan, so I wouldn't want to drive more than an hour from aound there to buy a bike.
Bike I currently am looking at is the Gary fisher (trek makes these apparently) mountain bike for $85:
There is also a trek 830 mountain bike for $75:
Royce Union mountain bike for $25. I have a spare seat :
$100 almost new aspen mountain bike. The problem is I am 5'7" and i'm not sure if this bike will fit me. Or whether the wheels are 26":
A $130 (looks) brand new Nishiki bike:
https://us.letgo.com/en/i/gray-and-red- ... 3684c1539d
Super cheap Magna front-suspension bike for $20:
Other possible bikes:
https://detroit.craigslist.org/mcb/bik/ ... 67610.html
https://detroit.craigslist.org/mcb/bik/ ... 78844.html
https://detroit.craigslist.org/okl/bik/ ... 72007.html
https://detroit.craigslist.org/okl/bik/ ... 47943.html
https://toledo.craigslist.org/bik/d/gt- ... 61828.html
https://detroit.craigslist.org/mcb/bik/ ... 61993.html
Which one would be best? I don't have to go the craigslist route either. I could go around to my local thrift stores and look for bikes there as well. Right now it's the middle of winter so bikes are cheap because nobody is thinking about going outdoors yet. That makes it a good time to buy. Also, I haven't checked other websites like letgo or offerup yet so if anyone finds a bike on there that looks promising, maybe i'll get that instead.
EDIT: my other option would be to go with an el-cheapo walmart bike like this:
https://www.walmart.com/ip/Huffy-26-Nig ... /119411493
It DOES have front disc brakes, something I have read is important for an ebike, but then again, my rim brakes on my old bike did hold up for the job just fine. Just don't be a idiot and floor the brakes 1 meter from a street intersection and I was okay. I've also read some horror stories about these bikes being poorly assembled, so they don't have the best reputation.
Any input would help. Thanks everyone.