Need Help Finding E-Bike With Features I want

General Discussion about electric bicycles.
LeftieBiker   1 kW

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Need Help Finding E-Bike With Features I want

Post by LeftieBiker » Jun 11 2018 12:21am

I've been riding EZIP Trailz bikes since 2013, and have several of them. I have 20AH LiFePo4 Ping packs on the two I still use. They are good, solid road bikes, but they are also a bit slow and heavy, very noisy, and lack real suspension and good brakes. I'd like to get myself (since I'm getting pretty old and feeble and it's Now or Never) a good, fast, quiet, reliable bike with disk brakes, full suspension if possible, and either a mid drive or a strong hubmotor for the tallish hills on my preferred route. I'd like a top speed of at least 25MPH assisted, and both TAG and Pedelec modes. I want a range of at least 30 miles, real-world. A step-thru frame would probably be best for me now, as I find it hard to dismount from my diamond frame Trailz. I've seen a few like the Magnum Metro+ that come very close to what I want, but it seems that all of the E-Bike manufacturers have switched to thumb throttles, and most have swapped sides with the controls compared to my EZIPs. I'm really wanting the control setup I have now, more or less: right side twist half throttle, left side shifter, preferably twist type. Does such a beast exist, either off the shelf, or with manufacturer-installed options like twist throttle? I can spend up to $2k, maybe a bit more for a great bike. Please help a fellow e-biker and EV Geezer!

EDIT: I forgot to add that the bike has to allow a full upright riding position, as I have trouble with my back, arms, and hands (not to mention legs and feet.) That means no straight bars, and preferably fully adjustable bars. I have the bars on all my EZIPs mounted backwards so I can ride upright.

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Re: Need Help Finding E-Bike With Features I want

Post by MadRhino » Jun 11 2018 7:08am

Details like throttle type and handlebar height shouldn’t be important in the choice of a bike. The dealer selling it is likely to accept making those small mods for you, or they could be done for cheap anyway.
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Re: Need Help Finding E-Bike With Features I want

Post by 2old » Jun 11 2018 9:33am

A 28 mph Juiced bike can be configured per your requirements, and the company has better than average reviews for its products. Otherwise DIY with either a BBS or Mac system depending on whether mid or hub seems more appropriate for your application.

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Re: Need Help Finding E-Bike With Features I want

Post by LeftieBiker » Jun 11 2018 1:58pm

I guess I wasn't clear enough that I can't make any real mods anymore, so no DIY either. It's a struggle for me to adjust an EZIP drive chain these days. So suggestions for specific bikes that can be ordered with reconfigured controls are needed. I'm not familiar with Juiced Bikes but I'll search for them.

EDIT: the Rip Current looks pretty good but I see no sign of an available twist throttle.

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Re: Need Help Finding E-Bike With Features I want

Post by methods » Jun 11 2018 2:11pm

hrm - No DIY on the DIY forum :)

Does not compute.

Maybe a tadpole trike and a lift to carry it around.
Saw a guy at the lighthouse a few days ago coming off of a 25 mile ride using nothing but his arms.

Skimmed the posting and did not see "handicapped" but we have plenty of folks here who are absolutely (from a tough starting position) making all sorts of awesome out of the box solutions.

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Increasing battery voltage and controller current limit will result in a non linear experience

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Re: Need Help Finding E-Bike With Features I want

Post by LeftieBiker » Jun 11 2018 9:24pm

I'm handicapped in the sense that I can't walk far, but I can still ride a bicycle - with power assist for hills and upgrades. I have a handicapped placard for my 2018 Leaf. I will probably be dead or home-bound in one to three years, and would like to enjoy the time I have left being mobile.

It's my understanding that this is the "E-Bike General Discussion Forum." I know the site is generally DIY oriented, but I've been an active participant here for over 5 years and there is plenty of talk about buying and riding pre-built bikes. Anyway, I'd like to ask those whose response is "DIY!" to just yell that at the screen and not bother typing it. ;-) Once again, I'm looking to buy an off the shelf bike with the configuration and accessories I need, and I had hoped that the combined experience of this site would be more than adequate for that. If a manufacturer doesn't list a twist throttle as an available accessory, I put them towards the bottom of the list. If I find a bike that's perfect otherwise, I'll contact the manufacturer and beg them to install one for me. I'm still hoping to find a bike that's what I need as-listed, because my needs aren't exactly odd or rare. I have arthritis in my hands, arms and shoulders, BTW, which is why I need to ride upright and with a twist throttle.

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Re: Need Help Finding E-Bike With Features I want

Post by dustNbone » Jun 12 2018 3:32am

I would contact some of the ebike makers that build their bikes from parts. Luna is one, I'm sure there are others. They may be willing to customize one of their builds for you, because, as mentioned above, the parts are generally easily interchangable. Putting a twist throttle on the left is a super easy job, just as easy as putting a thumb throttle on the right.

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Re: Need Help Finding E-Bike With Features I want

Post by LeftieBiker » Jun 12 2018 4:42am

I actually need the throttle on the right, and shifter on the left. I'm not too enamored of Luna from what I've read here lately. Are there any manufacturers who are extra nice to deal with?

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Re: Need Help Finding E-Bike With Features I want

Post by docw009 » Jun 12 2018 7:55am

Maybe you can find a local builder at the local ebike shop. What you want is pretty easy. Might not be cheap if they want to sell you a $4K bike.

I don't Luna carries any step thru bikes these days, otherwise they could put a BBS02 on one side and add a twist grip on the left side. I'd suggest asking, because they ought to be good at doing the mid drive and shipping it in a box.

But there are other builders out there who don't need to whine about breaking the warranty, etc.

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Re: Need Help Finding E-Bike With Features I want

Post by methods » Jun 12 2018 10:56am

You likely will not find what you seek pre-configured.

You will likely be faced with 2 options:

1) Pay someone to professionally convert a bike to your custom specification (expensive)
2) Befriend someone to help you (cheap)

That is the point of DIY... to learn, to save money, to be with friends.

If you can afford it... there are any number of integrators.. who could help you.
If you want to take it slow... there are any number of enthusiasts who could help you.

It is my opinion - that if you focus on trying to index commercially available solutions... that you may not succeed in (2).

You may instead want to try the following:

1) Post the research you have performed for others to learn from
2) Clearly identify (i.e. not in a block of text but with pictures and spacing) the changes you need to a commercial product.
3) Identify folks who are interested and determine or develop a trust relationship
4) Get help down selecting on replacement parts
5) Order the bike and parts and have them shipped to your trusted party
6) Pay for and arrange the forward shipping to you - after they modify (or better... find someone local)

If you can ride a bike... I feel confident that you can do some VERY BASIC wiring.

If the parts you select are not "plug and play" you could ship those out for modification.
Likely any number of people would do it for "twenty bux" if you arrange the shipping and parts

Good luck and share your findings and research

-methods
Increasing battery voltage and controller current limit will result in a non linear experience

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Re: Need Help Finding E-Bike With Features I want

Post by LeftieBiker » Jun 12 2018 2:27pm

Maybe you can find a local builder at the local ebike shop.
There are no local E-Bike shops in my part of upstate NY.
That is the point of DIY... to learn, to save money, to be with friends.
I'd add to that a sense of accomplishment. However, since the issue is that I cannot do the work anymore, rather than that I lack the basic skills, I'm going to check this topic weekly rather than daily. People are using it as a soapbox instead of reading and understanding the actual situation. It's starting to look like I'll be riding an EZIP for the rest of my biking life.
Last edited by LeftieBiker on Jun 12 2018 5:19pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Need Help Finding E-Bike With Features I want

Post by LeftieBiker » Jun 12 2018 5:19pm


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Re: Need Help Finding E-Bike With Features I want

Post by docw009 » Jun 12 2018 5:34pm

Personally, I am a bit biased against direct drive bikes like that rad-city as they don't coast as well as the gerared ones or the mid drives, but that's what I value in a bike. So ask them if they will fit it with a twist shifter on the left and move the throttle to the right. There is also the up-down thumb switch used to turn on the controller. They like to put that on the left side too. I would guess they drop ship bikes though right off the boat. I don't think Rad has a assembly place.

If you like the Magnum, it would be mail order anyway. You're right that there's no Magnum dealers in NY state, but you could have it prepped/shipped from a dealer in VT or PA, if the shop is willing to move the controls for you. A sale is a sale, and it's not like bikes are jumping out the doors unless maybe you're selling the Juiced or Rad brands.

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Re: Need Help Finding E-Bike With Features I want

Post by e-beach » Jun 12 2018 6:10pm

What I would do is go to your local bike shops and ask around to find a good bike mechanic who can mod a bike for you. Then contact ebikes.ca because they are: 1) nice, knowledgeable e-bike people, and: 2) they have everything you need or can tell you where to get it.

If you put out a want-add here on ES to find someone in your area that can do the conversion for you that could also work.

What you basically need is a step through bike that has front suspension, a rear hub 48v motor and a 20ah battery in saddle bags attached to your rear rack. It will be heavy but it will suit your requirements.

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Current build: Liahona w/ cheap front suspension and suspension seat post. Yescomusa 36v 800w generic front hub motor. 15ah Headway triangle mounted pack. Tronsung 30 amp,

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Re: Need Help Finding E-Bike With Features I want

Post by wturber » Jun 12 2018 8:03pm

docw009 wrote:
Jun 12 2018 5:34pm
Personally, I am a bit biased against direct drive bikes like that rad-city as they don't coast as well as the gerared ones or the mid drives, but that's what I value in a bike.
I'm generally favored toward direct drives, but I think a geared drive would actually make more sense for the OP given his physical issues. It should be a bit lighter and more likely possible to pedal if there is a systems power failure of some kind. That could be more important if you physical abilities are marginal.
"Commuter - DC Booster"
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8 x 36v 4.3ah 10s 2P battery packs - 1500W 30A DC Boost Converter delivers 54v and about 1000 watts peak
53T/42T Sakae Road cranks - 30mph+ on flats
viewtopic.php?f=2&t=90369

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Re: Need Help Finding E-Bike With Features I want

Post by e-beach » Jun 12 2018 9:20pm

Depends, I suppose on how much the OP is desiring/planing on pedaling.

:D
Favorite Quote: "This is L.A., sugar. There is no 'over the top." --- Chris Erskine

Current build: Liahona w/ cheap front suspension and suspension seat post. Yescomusa 36v 800w generic front hub motor. 15ah Headway triangle mounted pack. Tronsung 30 amp,

Previous Build:1992 Trek Antelope 800 - Bone Crusher (no suspension) - Yescomusa 800 watt 36 volt front wheel kit. Don't do it! Get suspension!!!

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Re: Need Help Finding E-Bike With Features I want

Post by LeftieBiker » Jun 13 2018 2:55pm

Good point about the direct drive hub. I was worried about it too, although at least one review says it pedals easily. I pedal almost all the time (except steep downhills) but I don't think I'd want a bike that was hard to pedal when off.

I contacted the Magnum people, and after three days finally got a response. It completely misunderstands my question, just saying I can modify the bike as I like, except for the "electrical system." Last time I checked, the throttle was part of said system, anyway. Shame, because the Magnum Metro seems the best candidate (except the controls) so far...

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Re: Need Help Finding E-Bike With Features I want

Post by methods » Jun 14 2018 10:07am

Did we eliminate pedal assist already?

The Ebikes facilitated by the City of Santa Cruz use Pedal Assist.
There are about 300 of them scattered around town.
They move out pretty well.
That eliminates the throttle install details.

If its a custom setup (as can be procured from Grin) the OP can dial in whatever level of assist he desires. He can type so he can tune a CA.

No doubt a bike mechanic can install the magnetic pickup on the crank - I just removed one the other day and it requires either no special tools or a single special tool. The reset is just zip ties.

A CA can be adapted to literally any ebike controller on the market.

Battery Power
Battery Ground
Throttle
Ebrake (or omit)
Shunt +/- or inline puck

Pulse input from a crank set

...
As for soap boxing...
From my soap box I do not believe that anyone becomes incapable at any point in time.
Incapable is a decision. If we have to we can duct-tape a wrench to your arm and spin you around in circles... :)
But it is required that you fight till the end, nobody said it wont hurt, and yea... its a trust exercise.

Incapable is a spectrum
Not a binary True or False
Therefore it can be considered a spectrum of capable

There is a surf instructor across the street from me. A guy comes around sometimes who does not have use of his legs. He goes out surfing. He has to trust the instructor not to let him drown.

...

Otherwise - its simply a socioeconomic thing. There is a paraplegic man in town who had a custom chair put together. It raises him up to "standing eye level height" (balancing) and he can even navigate stairs. As far as I can tell... mentally... he is 100% "normal and well adjusted"... and I think a lot of it is mental. Deciding to innovate to make yourself bionic so as not to have to feel inhibited.

end soap box

As I said in the beginning
If you frame the argument the same you will get the same results
Original problem to solve was already described

Free advice above from others - for more free ideas re-frame the argument so that you are solving something different.

have fun

-methods
Increasing battery voltage and controller current limit will result in a non linear experience

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Re: Need Help Finding E-Bike With Features I want

Post by LeftieBiker » Jun 15 2018 5:12am

Does anybody have something constructive to add, like brands/models/reviews? To recap:

* No local E-bike shop. The few shops that sell them here don't work on them.

* I can't do more than very minor work because of physical limitations. I do not own, nor do I plan to acquire, a powered exoskeleton. I don't even have a semi-skilled assistant. I usually sit in a low lawn chair to do hard things like inflate tires or adjust a drive chain. If a manufacturer would include a twist throttle and left side shifter that were plug and play I could install them. I can not adapt mismatched parts. It seems like most of the people who sell e-bikes as their brand just have them drop-shipped already built from China, and can't or won't get a single thing changed on the production line. Magnum just told me, after implying otherwise, that their bikes are "not compatible" with twist throttles.

* I can spend up to maybe $2500. From what I've seen of the bikes priced above that, you are buying a trendy brand name. Many of them don't even have a suspension.

I'm reluctant to buy a Magnum Metro (the best-seeming match for me other than the controls) simply because I'll still use my EZIP in Winter, and don't want to crash because I grabbed the wrong control in a dangerous situation. That's assuming I could still learn to operate the shifter and throttle ass-backwards. I never was able to ride a Bultaco motorcycle without mashing the shift pedal instead of the brake, and vice versa.

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Re: Need Help Finding E-Bike With Features I want

Post by amberwolf » Jun 15 2018 10:31pm

Unfortunatley I don't know of any prebuilt bikes that have all of the features you need. :(


I wish you were down here; I'd fix up whatever you needed changed on whatever you end up getting, so you wouldn't have to deal with it yourself.


If you think it would help you out, since no one local to you has volunteered in this thread yet, perhaps you could post in the Wanted section for someone localish to you that would be willing to modify something that has almost everything you need, into something that does have everything you need.


I hope it's ok for me to have contacted a couple good ebike companies (radpower and grin) to see if they can get you exactly what you need; I directed them to this thread.

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Re: Need Help Finding E-Bike With Features I want

Post by LeftieBiker » Jun 16 2018 12:12am

amberwolf wrote:
Jun 15 2018 10:31pm
Unfortunatley I don't know of any prebuilt bikes that have all of the features you need. :(


I wish you were down here; I'd fix up whatever you needed changed on whatever you end up getting, so you wouldn't have to deal with it yourself.


If you think it would help you out, since no one local to you has volunteered in this thread yet, perhaps you could post in the Wanted section for someone localish to you that would be willing to modify something that has almost everything you need, into something that does have everything you need.


I hope it's ok for me to have contacted a couple good ebike companies (radpower and grin) to see if they can get you exactly what you need; I directed them to this thread.

Thanks for the effort! I was told that - for whatever reason - the Metro drive system isn't compatible with a twist throttle. At this point I might actually consider an ergonomic thumb throttle (if that isn't a contradiction in terms) on a system that mostly didn't need throttle input, but it has to be on the right side only. Also, I'm considering hiring a friend who isn't experienced with e-bikes, but who does work in light manufacturing, to do whatever work I need, with me directing him. I actually have a complete, NOS, EZIP Trailz step-thru bike that could probably accept either a Bafang mid-drive kit or a rear hubmotor/wheel kit, but just thinking about that makes my arms, hands, and back hurt. And I still don't know if the twist throttle on the Trailz could be made to talk to a new drive system.

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Re: Need Help Finding E-Bike With Features I want

Post by docw009 » Jun 16 2018 9:23am

LeftieBiker wrote:
Jun 16 2018 12:12am
I actually have a complete, NOS, EZIP Trailz step-thru bike that could probably accept either a Bafang mid-drive kit or a rear hubmotor/wheel kit, but just thinking about that makes my arms, hands, and back hurt. And I still don't know if the twist throttle on the Trailz could be made to talk to a new drive system.
Yeah, if you were my neighbor, we'd get that bike set up with a BBS02 mid drive and save you maybe a thousand bucks over that Magnum. Well, if you got a buddy that owns a set of metric wrenches, he could install a BBS02 on that EXIP biuke in an afternoon. Not that he needs any of those wrenches. Mainly a set of metrc allen wrenches - $5.99 from Lowes is enough,

Do it. Do it right now. What what my grand kid sez.

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Re: Need Help Finding E-Bike With Features I want

Post by LeftieBiker » Jun 16 2018 2:01pm

That's a lot of money to spend on a project I might not be able to finish. I have not one but two 20AH Ping packs that I can't use for any new bike because they are 24 volt, so that's about $1300+ to convert the EZIP with a new 48 volt pack. Does anyone know if the throttle on the Trailz will work with the Bafang controller? Is the bottom bracket in the size range the Bafang will fit? I'm also concerned about said controller being inside the motor housing. I don't ride off-road anymore, but I do climb big hills in hot weather. I've managed to burn out one EZIP controller over the years...

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Re: Need Help Finding E-Bike With Features I want

Post by wturber » Jun 16 2018 3:26pm

LeftieBiker wrote:
Jun 16 2018 2:01pm
That's a lot of money to spend on a project I might not be able to finish. I have not one but two 20AH Ping packs that I can't use for any new bike because they are 24 volt, so that's about $1300+ to convert the EZIP with a new 48 volt pack. <snip>
Run them in series and you have 48 v at 20ah. Run one through a boost converter like I show in my sig and you can run one as a single 48v 10ah pack. The converter I'm using will supply a tad more than 1000 watts.
"Commuter - DC Booster"
Iron Horse 3.0 hardtail - 48V / 1000W / 470rpm generic Chinese DD Hub motor (ebay)
8 x 36v 4.3ah 10s 2P battery packs - 1500W 30A DC Boost Converter delivers 54v and about 1000 watts peak
53T/42T Sakae Road cranks - 30mph+ on flats
viewtopic.php?f=2&t=90369

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Re: Need Help Finding E-Bike With Features I want

Post by LeftieBiker » Jun 16 2018 9:33pm

Run them in series and you have 48 v at 20ah. Run one through a boost converter like I show in my sig and you can run one as a single 48v 10ah pack. The converter I'm using will supply a tad more than 1000 watts.
Interesting idea, but I need one for my Sister's bike, and don't think that ~ 8 amps available on the other would be enough. I don't mind spending up to $2k, but I want either a less expensive converted bike that works very well, or a more expensive bike that I don't have to modify. I'm also having second thoughts about a mid-drive. The thing I like least about the EZIPs is the noise, and I like smooth power delivery. I'd probably be happier with a 750-1000 watt hubmotor. I'd be happiest of all with a new aluminum bike that exceeded my needs.

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