Wow, I didn't realize what I was stepping into. Anyway, this will be my first e-bike project. It's possible that a hub motor will meet my needs. Hub motors seem to work well for many people in many areas. I would love to hear from anyone who has used a hub motor in my area. I had originally considered a 406/409 and more recently an X5. I first started looking into an e-bike conversion in 2004. At the time, I exchanged some e-mails with Joshua Goldberg regarding the 406/409. Shortly there after, I was in an automobile accident that kept me off the street for two and a half years.
Honestly, I don't mind adding gears. I think it will be a fun project. I'm fortunate enough to have access to the university's shop. So, I'm in a position to machine motor mounts and the like. Also, I suspect that I'll get better performance and efficiency in this
city. I could be wrong. I consider the area somewhat exceptional in this regard. Bicycling Magazine once rated Pittsburgh one of the worst cities for biking citing the hills and the lack of bicycle lanes. Also, I'm rolling the dice on this being more economical even outside of battery costs as I may avoid spending money twice: once to try a hub and then again to try gears.
I have no interest in bragging, and I'm certainly not knocking hub motors. Just having some fun, and hopefully transforming my bike into something that can serve as my primary form of transportation. Now, I'm actually quite serious about primary bicycle transportation, fun aside. My spine was damaged in 2004, and I find the seat of my recumbent to be considerably more comfortable than the seat of my car. I've come to loath driving. Spinning helps too as I cramp up if I sit still. Plus, I need to do a minimum of 30 minutes of solid pedaling daily for PT anyway.
Lowell wrote:Those are some pretty mean hills! What's the typical length?
Well, I'm most familiar with Rialto. The truly nasty section is just over 1/10th of a mile. However, it continues going up hill after that. Also, it's going to be hard to get a running start. In addition to the traffic light, the road jogs coming off the bridge at the base of the hill. The terrain is generally hilly even outside of the nasty sections. Still, some of the nasty sections are a must for me, such as Rialto.
What do you think, would a hub motor work here in a bike intended as a primary vehicle?
By-the-by, I now have a way to make the motor's gears legal in Pennsylvania. So, I haven't scrapped the plan just yet.
Anyway, I think I'll avoid the hub vs geared debate, but I'll happily absorb any input on the matter.