Well Folks - here it is. Not sure why the picture is so muddy looking but its the best I could do with my cheap camera
I have not taken a real long ride on it yet so I can not tell you how long the batteries will last when pushed to the limit. I will try in this review to let you know how it rides and other quirks as I discover them.
As you can see I also had to do what Reid did on his ebike and turn the handlebar stem around. I am a short guy with real short arms it would appear because with the stem turned around I gained 8 inchs of reach.
I raised the stem up to its maximum extension but could use a couple more inches there as well. Will probably need new handlebars but for right now this works ok. The seat is one of those "I feel like I am setting on a 2x4 on its edge" types, however it is very well cushioned and I believe that once I get used to the change from a big soft seat to this one that it will turn out to be alright. It can always be changed for another if you need more support then it provides.
My first ride was a short one. I had charged the batteries for 6 hours and the green light was on but my trip of about 2 miles started the red light flashing. I decided not to push it and brought it home and put it back on the charger.
The second trip went much better I pedaled more and kept the speed down to where I could pedal along in 7th gear comfortably. This seemed to be a good combination because I was able to make the 6 mile trip up and back down the island without the red light ever coming on. Battery recharge time was about 1 1/2 hours.
(speed on this trip was ~12-14mph - see Dec. 10 update below)
I do not have a GPS, BrainDrain, WattsUp or Speedo so I can not report speeds or voltage drops, however I can say that this motor will out run the gearing of the bike. It can start you off from a dead stop with ease no pedaling required even though I would think its best to help out if you want the batteries to go the distance.
My first impressions are that this is a well made bicycle that is a very good buy for the $279.46 wallymart is asking for it. It is setup for the mountain bike type ride and not for the cruiser types. However I am pretty sure that with a few changes like the handlebars, it will turn into a comfortable ride even for old guys like me.
I will add more as I discover it.
UPDATE - Dec. 7, 2006
I took a ride last night using no pedaling to see how far it would go before the red light came on. I did not run wide open throttle but about 75-80%. I went just over 8 miles before the red light began to flicker and by the time I got home at 8.5 miles the red light was on more then off. Recharge time was 4 hours. Wind had picked up to 17 mph during the ride but the motor pulled against it fine.
(speed on this trip was ~16mph - see Dec. 10 update below)
I am becoming used to the saddle now and really had no problems in that regard. Handlebars still a little low for comfort but I was not in any pain at end of ride as I had been on the other rides.
I am really starting to like this bike a lot. I think it will serve my needs very well even if I do not get the distance per trip I was hoping for. I can go any where on the island with no problem so all that remains to be determinded is how far onto the mainland I will be able to go.
Will start working on that next.
UPDATE - Dec. 10, 2006
Well the local police really helped me out today. I have no speedo so I was always wondering how fast I going. Today I found out, they put out one of those "control your speed radar gun signs" along the route I ride in the evening to go watch the sunset so I had my chance to make lots of runs by it and see what speed I was doing.
I now know that in 7th gear I ride 11mph on the low end of my pedalling cadence and 14 mph on the high end. My top speed unassisted must be in-between 16-17 mph because it kept bouncing back and forth and finally decided to show 16 as its final result. I am a little on the portly side so that does not surprise me.
I found it was very hard to go just 10mph perhaps the sign will not register 10 mph or less. I tried to do my standard 2nd gear speed with no assist and it would not register a speed at all.
So now I know if I pedal easy I am doing about 11-12mph and if I pedal fast I am doing around 14-15mph using the assist. I can not pedal for more then a minute in 7th gear without the assist.
I still have not ventured off the island but do plan to do that in the near future. I will post the results when it happens.