Today I purchased my 14th, and probably last, tank of gas for the year. I have been averaging about 13 tanks a year but I drove to San Diego a few times with my son.
Also, purchased a 15s bms and have been doing some testing. Can't seem to get it to balance the pack. Seems just to shut down the charge when the first cell reaches 4.18v. If anyone has a 15s bms recommendation please post. I am just interested in the balancing feature. Here I have the good half of a bad 36v (5s) pack added to a good 36v pack (10s).
At work, my semester ended December 15th. I ebiked 79 times and drove 10 times. My 1000w bike is still running great.
The 15s 12p samsung 22p pack has just under 17K miles in 2+ years of use (about 740 cycles). Still in almost perfect balance but loosing some capacity. I hope it will last the rest of the year. Just in case, I ordered 200 samsung 25r 18650 cells for $2.50 each plus $127.00 fees/shipping ($627 total). Also, not sure if there will be a change in policy toward China.
On my first year commuting by ebike it was very lonely. I only saw 3 fellow ebikers total. Since ebikes were rare, I got the occasional negative comment. "Cheater" was the most common. Since I was usually riding under the 20 mph limit, I just smiled, nodded my head in agreement and kept riding. At times, I would explain the law that an ebike going less than 20mph was just a bike.
On the San Gabriel bike path, you come across many colorful characters. You've probably seen the old guy wearing a black speedo with a black plastic bag tied to his handlebars a few times over the last 20 years if you ride in the afternoon. My brother calls him "leatherback." Many homeless camps also spring up, especially in the summer. In September 2012 I ran into 2 homeless guys that left me wondering.
Along the north side of the San Gabriel River, under the 91 freeway in the summer of 2012, there were about dozen tents and a large population of homeless people. This group seemed to have a more than enough bikes and bike parts to open up several bike stores. Twice I observed 2 guys harassing commuters and bikers in general. One guy on a small bmx bike seemed to be trying to knock out the front wheel of bikers passing by, using his rear wheel, while the other, older guy, rode up along side and tried distracting the rider. To me, they seemed to be goofing around, because they were not successful at getting the rider off the bike. I could hear them laughing and cursing.
One day, while commuting home on my 500w ebike, I looked up and noticed that these 2 had targeted me. I knew the routine so I started riding real slow to keep my front wheel out of range of the bmx bike as he weaved back and forth on the path while looking back gauging his timing. The guy on the mountain bike came along side me and started laughing. I turned and got a good look at him: plaid shorts, white tank top, kind of skinny, dirty blond/brown hair, sneakers, and thick black ankle braclet with a small black box attached. Up close he looked older, maybe 40+, and not that big. He did not worry me much. The other guy on the bmx was fast and could jump the bike like a racer. He wore jeans, no shirt. I did not see an ankle bracelet but his pants were extra long, covering his ankles. I was worried about him, so, when I had the chance, I full throttled past him wide to one side. As I was going by he said something i couldn't make out. When I was safely ahead, I slowed down and smiled, planing to explain about ebikes and the law. Instead, the bmx guy said "get that f##ken bike out of here" and reached out and grabbed my handlebar with his right hand. I was shocked and just kept riding giving it a little more throttle. He did not let go. After 150 yards we were going over 20mph and he tried to kick me. I was able to block each kick with my leg. He tried to shake my handle bars but I just held on giving it full throttle. Finally, he gave one final shove to my handle bar. He lost his balance and went down hard. I continued riding while they both were screaming profanities at me. I did not look back.
At dinner that night I remember saying to my wife "I think either people don't like ebikes, or, 2 guys tried to steel my bike today." I saw these two guys a few more times but kept my distance. Once I called the police when I saw them stealing a bike from the Walmart a few miles down the bike path, but the dispatcher refused to take a report.
About a year later, I was riding a public bus with my students on the way to the mall in West Covina and noticed a nice carbon road bike on the front rack. I assumed it was the bus drivers and we started talking about biking and bike paths. I mentioned that I ride the San Gabriel bike path a lot and he told me to be careful. He said a buddy of his was jumped by 2 guys a year earlier and they got his carbon mountain bike. I thought about the 2 guys that engaged me a year earlier who probably didn't know what an ebike was and were, most likely, trying to steal my faster moving bike. I often wondered about what happened to them and their collection of bikes and bike parts.
Then in the spring of 2014, I opened the LA times one day and saw 2 familiar faces. I showed the paper to my wife and explained that these were the guys that tried to jump me on the bike path (I do not think she remembered my earlier comment). They had been accused of killing 4 women. I looked at the photos carefully and told her I was 99% sure about the older guy but the younger guy's face looks fuller (he was probably eating better). I was only 80% sure about him.
The older guy's trial just ended here in Orange County. He was found guilty of 4 counts of 1st degree murder. He represented himself and claimed that the probation department failed to do it's job and he should have been in jail (no kidding) because of numerous probation violations. The bmx guy's trial is coming up.
I am not really following the story or the trial but I see about a dozen ebikers daily and have not heard a negative comment in over 2 years. If someone grabs your handlebars because they do not like ebikes or they want to steal it, hang on tight with both hands, and keep smiling.