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Switzerland

Posted: May 02 2019 2:22pm
by dlongson
Hi
I don't think this has been asked yet:

In Switzerland the rules for the low power e-bike states that the power of the motor is "maximum 500w". Does this refer to the continuous power (i.e. motor stamped 500w), or to the peak power (in which case I assume it's Controller Current setting x Volts)...

In the UK it's 250W continuous, and I thought Switzerland were more generous? But a Bafang BA02 500W supplier in europe has suggested that the rules are for PEAK and not CONTINUOUS power. Would make a big difference

Cheers
Damien

Re: Switzerland

Posted: May 02 2019 4:20pm
by eee291
You should read around more because here in Austria it's 600W continuous, and this article confirms it for Switzerland:
https://www.electricbike.com/switzerland-ebike-limit/

I ride around with 5Kw so I think you'll be fine :lol:

Re: Switzerland

Posted: May 02 2019 6:07pm
by donn
dlongson wrote:
May 02 2019 2:22pm
But a Bafang BA02 500W supplier in europe has suggested that the rules are for PEAK and not CONTINUOUS power.
If that's for Europe, then it appears to me to be wrong -
EU 2002/24/EC wrote:Cycles with pedal assistance which are equipped with an auxiliary electric motor having a maximum continuous rated power of 0.25 kW, of which the output is progressively reduced and finally cut off as the vehicle reaches a speed of 25km/h (15.5mph) or if the cyclist stops pedaling.
Whatever they think "continuous" means, I think the important word is really "rated". It doesn't call for a power cutoff at 0.25 kW, like it does at 25km/h, you just need a rating. If there isn't any reference to a standard by which this rating is arrived at, then it's up to the manufacturer. If Bafang wants to rate their motors by the maximum power they can support for 1 second, or for 10 hours, it's up to them, but unless they're crazy they'll rate them by sustained output.

It's a fair bet that Switzerland and everyone else takes the same approach, but it's hard to say by just reading the blog articles, like electricbike.com linked above. If the Bafang supplier is communicative, might ask for a reference to the actual Swiss legislation and see what it says.

Re: Switzerland

Posted: May 02 2019 8:03pm
by markz
https://www.ebikes.ca/learn/power-ratings.html

What is 600W anyways, within them pages of authority?

I go by the motto of being a courteous cyclist. It is like buying a Lamborghini Aventador that no one in their right mind would speed anything over 20 over the speed limit, units dont even matter whether its kph or mph.

Re: Switzerland

Posted: May 03 2019 4:49am
by MadRhino
Troubles are coming when you ride like a jerk, and you don’t need much power for that.

If you behave, no one cares how much power that your bike is capable of.

Re: Switzerland

Posted: May 03 2019 4:59am
by izeman
So much misinfomation here.

Austria, Switzerland, and probably other EU countries as well didn't follow the so called "EU rules" which claim 250W rated continous. We all know that this is a plain stupid regulation which says nothing about max power, and leaves a lot of room for interpretation.

In Austria the limit clearly is 600W max, but it nowhere states if this is net power consumed by the motor, or gross power coming from the battery. So your battery meter can show 700W max and still the motor consumption can be below 600W and therefore still be legal.

Same rules go for Switzerland, but with 500W MAX.

This is the law's text:

"Leicht-Motorfahrräder (Art. 18 Bst. b Ziff. 1 VTS) d.h. höchstens zweiplätzige Elektrofahrräder mit max. 0,5 kW Motorleistung, einer ohne menschliche Muskelkraft – also mit reiner Motorleistung – erreichbaren sog. bauartbedingten Höchstgeschwindigkeit bis 20 km/h sowie einer Tretunterstützung, die bis maximal 25 km/h wirkt"

Note the: "max 0.5kW" !!!

Re: Switzerland

Posted: May 03 2019 10:31am
by donn
That really isn't so clear at all. Thanks for the reference, I was able to go from there to find what I believe is the wording actually published by the Swiss government:
Bundesrat Swiss Regulations Portal wrote:«Motorfahrräder» sind:
...
b.
«Leicht-Motorfahrräder», das heisst Fahrzeuge mit elektrischem Antrieb, einer Motorleistung von insgesamt höchstens 0,50 kW, einer bauartbedingten Höchstgeschwindigkeit von höchstens 20 km/h und einer allfälligen Tretunterstützung, die bis höchstens 25 km/h wirkt, und die:
(https://www.admin.ch/opc/de/classified- ... x.html#a18,
https://www.admin.ch/opc/de/official-co ... 6/5133.pdf

That "ingesamt höchstens 0,50 kW" is less explicit than the EU verbiage. By "höchstens" (maximum), it only means that 500W is the highest power that meets the definition, while 250W, 300W etc. are also acceptable. There's no hint of how this value is arrived at, for a given motor. "Ingesamt" (total) means that for example a front and rear hub configuration would be summed up. I'm not saying any of this is what was in their heads when they wrote it, but it's the reasonable interpretation; it would need some work to really address the present question.

Re: Switzerland

Posted: May 03 2019 11:51am
by izeman
All of what you say is true. Of course 0.5kW is the MAXIMUM. 250W is ok as well. But tbh i don't know of any 250W MAX ebike. Every "so called 250W" Bosch or Yamaha motor built in the last year put out spikes of 600-700W. And this is legal. And i assume that it will be legal in Switzerland as well. Wouldn't make sense else.
And sure you can ride 2x 250W max powered motors. This is not forbidden.

Re: Switzerland

Posted: May 03 2019 12:30pm
by donn
Right. I don't know what a Bafang BA02 is, but if they stamped it "500W", should be fine.

Re: Switzerland

Posted: May 03 2019 2:12pm
by fechter
Police generally don't carry around watt meters or know how to use them. They will look at the labels on the hardware.

Re: Switzerland

Posted: May 03 2019 7:55pm
by markz
Your 600W max, is meaningless. A small 200W motor could pull 1200W, might not last long.

Re: Switzerland

Posted: May 04 2019 2:54am
by izeman
markz wrote:
May 03 2019 7:55pm
Your 600W max, is meaningless. A small 200W motor could pull 1200W, might not last long.
No it's not. It's the ONLY thing that's measurable. Add a Watt meter and you will see what the motor pulls.
Something like 250W continous leaves way too much room for interpretation.

Re: Switzerland

Posted: May 04 2019 4:50pm
by markz
True, its the only thing thats measurable, but there needs to be additional information which non are given, even with the UK. Aside from the link I gave previously, the grin tech tour video, adds good info.
https://youtu.be/IxB2j-egWcQ?t=677
At time 12:12 is the other piece of info required but none is given.

Re: Switzerland

Posted: May 05 2019 2:04am
by wturber
izeman wrote:
May 04 2019 2:54am
markz wrote:
May 03 2019 7:55pm
Your 600W max, is meaningless. A small 200W motor could pull 1200W, might not last long.
No it's not. It's the ONLY thing that's measurable. Add a Watt meter and you will see what the motor pulls.
Something like 250W continous leaves way too much room for interpretation.
What the motor pulls is not the same as what the motor outputs. So while I wouldn't call the 600w or 500w number meaningless, it is a bit fuzzy given the unknown aspect of the motor efficiency and the lack of specificity of how the motor output should be measured. I think that is the point that a few people were trying to make earlier in the thread.

So if you attach a watt meter, you'd probably have to see watt consumption a bit north of 600 watts or maybe even 700 watts before you could be pretty sure that the motor was outputting more than 500 watts of power. This is the fuzzy bit.

Re: Switzerland

Posted: May 05 2019 3:12am
by izeman
As i said :)
No clear definition about how and where to measure, but still way more meaningful than this 'nominal wattage' thing.

Re: Switzerland

Posted: May 05 2019 9:44am
by donn
No one involved really wants a meaningful parameter. I mean, it wouldn't kill them if there were a well defined, verifiable power rating, but it would make violations more clear-cut, with the evident intention to enforce. This way, there's enough legal basis for the authorities to hassle trouble-makers, but plenty of room for the industry to do what it wants without having to tailor products to a armload of different jurisdictions.

Re: Switzerland

Posted: May 05 2019 12:08pm
by wturber
donn wrote:
May 05 2019 9:44am
No one involved really wants a meaningful parameter. I mean, it wouldn't kill them if there were a well defined, verifiable power rating, but it would make violations more clear-cut, with the evident intention to enforce. This way, there's enough legal basis for the authorities to hassle trouble-makers, but plenty of room for the industry to do what it wants without having to tailor products to a armload of different jurisdictions.
I think you make a good point about nobody really wanting a meaningful wattage parameter. I get the strong impression that most of this newer legislation is being pushed by manufacturers and that it is some minor side issue for most legislatures. So they really aren't going to a lot of trouble to think through the details. That said, I agree with izeman that setting a motor output limit is less nebulous than a continuous output rating. But I suspect that in the real world of enforcement, speed limits are the numbers that will be used most for enforcement. Unfortunately for law enforcement, many of these speed limits are only for motor assist speeds. This is sensible given that the speeds bicycles can reach on their own with the aid of downward slopes and tailwinds or short bursts of human power. But it then gets complicated for law enforcement.

And all of this gets back to the point made over and over. If your bike looks like a bicycle and you ride pretty much like a bicycle and don't create obvious problems for others, you will probably be left alone in most jurisdictions. As a practical matter for a person riding a home-brew bike, these things are almost always what matters most. The specifics of the law are interesting, but the police who are the first line of enforcement probably don't know them well.

Before I built my ebike, I googled enforcement in the Phoenix area. What I found almost exclusively was that the guys riding ebikes that looked like scooters and especially those who rode such bikes and gas powered bikes on multi-use park paths, were the ones getting hassled by police. The scooter/moped looking devices were actually completely legal. But their designs made them look like something other than a bicycle. Police in most areas seem to use appearance as a major factor in enforcement. Though police in Switzerland are probably more savy than most given the higher level of ebike use and the S-Pedelecs and their plates.

So for the OP, the key is almost surely to look mostly like a bicycle and to not exceed 25 kph. That, or if he wants to exceed 25 kph, go ahead and get licensed for an S-Pedelec. From what I read, the fees aren't that high. If the Swiss laws applied here, that's probably what I'd do.

Re: Switzerland

Posted: May 05 2019 10:03pm
by markz
Most likely a more relaxed vibe between cyclists and gassers in Schweiz, Suisse, Svizzera.

http://veloland.myswitzerland.com/en/veloland.html

Re: Switzerland

Posted: May 05 2019 11:48pm
by Ford Prefect
I have two things to add:

The Austrian jurisdiction is rather unique in the European context. They actually regulate the maximum power and mean p(max) = I(max) x U(max), and they allow a throttle without PAS.

I read "Switzerland, Austria and other EU countries". Switzerland does not apply EU rules for they are not EU. They allow 500W continuous and even had precedences in court. The Judge always applying p(cont) = p(max) / 2 = I(max) x U(max) / 2.
The precedences taking place to find out whose fault was a crash.

So far, and thanks for all the fish…

Re: Switzerland

Posted: May 06 2019 2:25am
by izeman
Ford Prefect wrote:
May 05 2019 11:48pm
"Switzerland, Austria and other EU countries". Switzerland does not apply EU rules for they are not EU.
That's why i said Switzerland COMMA (Austria & other EU countries) ;) I should start using more brackets 8)
They allow 500W continuous and even had precedences in court. The Judge always applying p(cont) = p(max) / 2 = I(max) x U(max) / 2.
So why do they then say "500W max"? Strange if you can't even trust those simple law texts.
And if you say p(cont)=p(max)*50% then this would mean 250W cont for Switzerland, and not 500W cont = 1000W max. 1000W max is defined as a special class ...

Re: Switzerland

Posted: May 06 2019 4:00am
by Lebowski
Just as a general rule here in Switzerland, everything fun is VERBOTEN !
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Re: Switzerland

Posted: May 06 2019 9:01am
by donn
izeman wrote:
May 06 2019 2:25am
So why do they then say "500W max"?
They have to say it. If they left it out, "with electric motor 500W", you'd need exactly 500W - no more, no less - to meet that standard. When they say "with electric motor 500W max", that allows anything that isn't more than 500W.
And if you say p(cont)=p(max)*50% then this would mean 250W cont for Switzerland, and not 500W cont = 1000W max. 1000W max is defined as a special class ...
"Max" has to be interpreted in context. Here it's in contrast to "cont", so it's clearly the maximum that can at any time be applied to the motor in question. Where used before in the context of all bicycle motors, it's maximum value that qualifies for that category, where value is determined however they choose in order to assign a value to each of those motors.

Re: Switzerland

Posted: May 06 2019 9:12am
by izeman
Hmmm. Strange interpretation in my opinion, but still valid. :shock:
All countries use something like max, cont, etc ... So they should have used "maximal 500W kontinuierlich", which unfortunately makes in not clearer either :lol:

Re: Switzerland

Posted: May 06 2019 1:08pm
by Ford Prefect
Lebowski wrote:
May 06 2019 4:00am
Just as a general rule here in Switzerland, everything fun is VERBOTEN !
They do verbiet some really weird things. You probably think "helping someone vomit" in the middle is weird - but who wants to do that on tram with a stranger? Right next to it on the left: "not knowing something". Now, this is degrading.

Re: Switzerland

Posted: May 06 2019 1:38pm
by Lebowski
Ford Prefect wrote:
May 06 2019 1:08pm
Lebowski wrote:
May 06 2019 4:00am
Just as a general rule here in Switzerland, everything fun is VERBOTEN !
They do verbiet some really weird things. You probably think "helping someone vomit" in the middle is weird - but who wants to do that on tram with a stranger? Right next to it on the left: "not knowing something". Now, this is degrading.
Yeah and the one behind the post is actually of a Mexican guy with a guitar, so no Mexicans allowed either :warn: