Should I get an Ebike for commuting?- Mtbr.com
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  1. #1
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    Should I get an Ebike for commuting?

    Hi everyone, I have been contemplating over the past couple of weeks, whether or not I should get an Ebike. Like I was thinking whether or not the benefits is worth the investment in the long term or not. I personally live in Sydney (beautiful place) but sometimes the commute can be quite frustrating if I travel to and fro from school. The ebike model I have been thinking of getting is the Mearth Ebike Zero: https://www.mearth.com.au/products/electric-bike


    So, I was wondering if any of you guys have any opinions about it and whether it would be a reasonable buy for me, as a student.

    Thanks heaps!

  2. #2
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    Quote Originally Posted by ebikeboi68 View Post
    Hi everyone, I have been contemplating over the past couple of weeks, whether or not I should get an Ebike. Like I was thinking whether or not the benefits is worth the investment in the long term or not. I personally live in Sydney (beautiful place) but sometimes the commute can be quite frustrating if I travel to and fro from school. The ebike model I have been thinking of getting is the Mearth Ebike Zero: https://www.mearth.com.au/products/electric-bike


    So, I was wondering if any of you guys have any opinions about it and whether it would be a reasonable buy for me, as a student.

    Thanks heaps!
    Not that one. They donít even specify the battery capacity in watt-hours; probably a 6x2 stack of the lowest capacity 18650 batteries made with around 100 watt-hours of energy storage.

  3. #3
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    For commuting, I think e-bikes are a good idea. My suggestion is to buy from a reputable shop near your home, work or school. Trek or Electra are the only brands I know anything about but I think they both have good options. They also cost about 3 times as much as the bike in your link.


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  4. #4
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    I updated the thread title so anyone who see's it knows this is not a discussion of eBikes on trails.
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  5. #5
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    What is your budget? Are you handy working with electrical kit? Can you set aside a budget for visiting a bike shop in event of problems? Do you have backup transportation?

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by Klurejr View Post
    I updated the thread title so anyone who see's it knows this is not a discussion of eBikes on trails.
    I noticed that this was a commuter bike, but charging every day would get pretty annoying; I commute 40 miles a week at 100 percent assist and use around 260 watt-hours to do that; a tiny battery would get very annoying especially if a secondary goal wasnít maintaining fitness so that battery consumption was even higher.

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    Cheers for that, true that, I get your point. Might have to reconsider. Thanks though!

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    I would say around a thousand max would do. No and I guess my backup transportation would be public transports. Cheers though

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    Ok I get where you are coming from. I might actually consider that then. Although sometimes the price might be a factor but thanks for the suggestions though!

  10. #10
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    Any bike that replaces a car on the roads gets my vote.

    Any bike that gets you a bit of exercise, and allows you to arrive to work or home with a little clearer head also gets my vote.

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by mikesee View Post
    Any bike that replaces a car on the roads gets my vote.

    Any bike that gets you a bit of exercise, and allows you to arrive to work or home with a little clearer head also gets my vote.
    Agreed!
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  12. #12
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    They dont even spec the bike properly, stay well away!
    Also be very wary of any distance figures, non should be given, all you need to know is volts, amp-hour, discharge rate in amps and watt-hour. If non are given then its a red flag. I laugh at the ads that state "Can go 10000000 miles" LOL Yeah on a constant downhill, with a back wind, and a 80lb Lance Armstrong.

  13. #13
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    I commute by ebike and regular bike and by car. You don't tell us anything about the distance, traffic, etc. My question to you would be, why wouldn't you (why wouldn't anyone) commute by ebike vs public transport or a motor vehicle?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Anger View Post
    I commute by ebike and regular bike and by car. You don't tell us anything about the distance, traffic, etc. My question to you would be, why wouldn't you (why wouldn't anyone) commute by ebike vs public transport or a motor vehicle?
    You can do both, I know in BC there are bike racks on literally every single bus. Can even take your bike on the train!

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    You should. And you should do a DIY build of a bike. Dont be afraid of burning anything down or dying otherwise you wont get anywhere. Leave that to the lycra pimps. Commute on an ebike. Its not a bicycle maybe but its really fun. 99% of the posters on this website never physically touched an electrified bike and thats ok, just watch their nasty little mouths, their ignorance and fake news is baffling. Its a different type of commute, and you might not get excersize, and you might break your local laws after you realize the scope of the situation, but nobody will care except for a handful of special people thinking everyone is racing them and ruining everything for them. These little men only exist online. They nowhere to be seen out here during the commute. Thats the mentality of the 1% fear runs them. Theyre afraid to lose. Coos dont care about your bicycle wether its elictrified or not. Its an online myth. Youre not dumb, you wont get in trouble. Dont go there. Be fearless. Be brave. Do your thing. Ride the lightning. Build an ebike. Theyre all underpowered. Get a 72v battery and ride 50mph on the flat. It feels good. Its silent and swift. Gear up always. But dont be scared. Yolo big time!

  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by taxed2death View Post
    You should. And you should do a DIY build of a bike. Dont be afraid of burning anything down or dying otherwise you wont get anywhere. Leave that to the lycra pimps. Commute on an ebike. Its not a bicycle maybe but its really fun. 99% of the posters on this website never physically touched an electrified bike and thats ok, just watch their nasty little mouths, their ignorance and fake news is baffling. Its a different type of commute, and you might not get excersize, and you might break your local laws after you realize the scope of the situation, but nobody will care except for a handful of special people thinking everyone is racing them and ruining everything for them. These little men only exist online. They nowhere to be seen out here during the commute. Thats the mentality of the 1% fear runs them. Theyre afraid to lose. Coos dont care about your bicycle wether its elictrified or not. Its an online myth. Youre not dumb, you wont get in trouble. Dont go there. Be fearless. Be brave. Do your thing. Ride the lightning. Build an ebike. Theyre all underpowered. Get a 72v battery and ride 50mph on the flat. It feels good. Its silent and swift. Gear up always. But dont be scared. Yolo big time!
    Ride the lightning!

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  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by taxed2death View Post
    You should. And you should do a DIY build of a bike. Dont be afraid of burning anything down or dying otherwise you wont get anywhere. Leave that to the lycra pimps. Commute on an ebike. Its not a bicycle maybe but its really fun. 99% of the posters on this website never physically touched an electrified bike and thats ok, just watch their nasty little mouths, their ignorance and fake news is baffling. Its a different type of commute, and you might not get excersize, and you might break your local laws after you realize the scope of the situation, but nobody will care except for a handful of special people thinking everyone is racing them and ruining everything for them. These little men only exist online. They nowhere to be seen out here during the commute. Thats the mentality of the 1% fear runs them. Theyre afraid to lose. Coos dont care about your bicycle wether its elictrified or not. Its an online myth. Youre not dumb, you wont get in trouble. Dont go there. Be fearless. Be brave. Do your thing. Ride the lightning. Build an ebike. Theyre all underpowered. Get a 72v battery and ride 50mph on the flat. It feels good. Its silent and swift. Gear up always. But dont be scared. Yolo big time!
    After reading this I ďranĒ into the shop and plugged all 5 in and cranked up some Metallica!
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  18. #18
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    seriously, if you have a decent base bike, you can grab a Bafang mid drive kit and have a 50-55kph bike for $1k. Depending on your weight and the size of your hills you could either build a 52V BBS02 or BBSHD bike, changing the front chainring will drive your top end within reason. My converted Cannondale MTB weighs 21 kilos and I only weigh another 63, so I only need a BBS02.

  19. #19
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    I was close to buying a $2,400 raleigh ebike but after thinking abot it more i figured that i could spend about $600.00 on a bafang 700c rear hub kit (48V/500W) and do the install and everything on my own and save a bunch of cash. Cruising my 12 mile round trip commute @ 23 - 25mph sounds pretty great. Not to mention that i could use it on the bus, BART, train and ferry. Grocery shopping...i think ive convinced myself...oh shit..

  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by Anger View Post
    I commute by ebike and regular bike and by car. You don't tell us anything about the distance, traffic, etc. My question to you would be, why wouldn't you (why wouldn't anyone) commute by ebike vs public transport or a motor vehicle?

    This is a really good set of questions that most others didn't bother to ask.

    I've been using my e-bike on pavement a lot lately, and the amount and type of traffic (as in how aggressive or stupid they drive), along with how wide or narrow (or non-existent) the bike lanes are can make or break a pavement e-bike ride/commute. Those two things make a huge difference between having a comfortable ride and always being on edge that a car will not see you and you have to bail off the bike at the last second. Or you simply never see them before you get hit. I'm trying to ride facing traffic now, because I just don't trust autos and their attention-deficit texters.

    Maybe in Australia they know how to drive better than here. But in my area, most people don't bother to stop at a right turn, whether it's a stop sign or a red light, and if they are texting, you can bet they will eventually swerve into the bike lane. If you happen to be at the spot they wandered into, that's going to be a long stay in the hospital. In 2015 45,000 cyclists were hit and 818 died. Not nearly as much as automobile fatalities, but much less people cycle than drive too. Mountain biking seems much safer than riding on pavement.

    https://www.bicycling.com/news/a2001...e-on-the-rise/

    "Researchers found that most of the fatalities involved incidents where the driver of the car did not see the cyclist, while the cyclist expected the driver to yield and instead was unable to avoid a collision."

    These road bikers I ride next to seem so stoic about it, like oh well, if I get hit I get hit, nothing I can do about it. They ride roughly about the same mph I do, maybe 12-13 mph on average, so they have to deal with the same crap in the bike lane at the same speed, but I guess they are used to it. I will never, ever get used to drivers that don't pay attention when turning through the bike lane.
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  21. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by richj8990 View Post
    I'm trying to ride facing traffic now, because I just don't trust autos and their attention-deficit texters.


    That is super dangerous, I've nearly hit cyclists several times due to that while driving. One example would be a driver turning right from a parking lot, the driver is looking for traffic coming from the left and is totally unconcerned about anything to the right. There are many other good reasons not to do it so for your safety please stop.
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  22. #22
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    The e-bike is ideal for commuting if you *would* otherwise bike commute but:
    -Distance is 10-50% too far.
    -You don't want to arrive at work drenched in sweat.
    -You need to haul kids/groceries/stuff (within reason).

    If you don't bike commute because you don't like riding in cold/hot/rainy weather, or you don't feel safe on the road with cars and there aren't bike paths or lanes, then the e-bike isn't going to solve those problems.

    Keep in mind that if you're going multi-mode, e-bikes are heavy and bulky and generally a PITA to load onto/off of other vehicles. You are not going to want to haul one up a flight of stairs to your apartment, or rush to get onto a crowded train.

    -W

  23. #23
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    I feel safer and more relaxed commuting with the ebike. The power let's me get ahead or keep up with traffic, but more importantly I think it allows me to be more patient. It's not as big of a deal to hit the brakes since I can always get going again quickly. And of course it's just alot easier of a commute. It's also faster than if I had to commute by train/bus/car.

  24. #24
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    I use one of my 3 ebikes to run errands while I'm driving through town with my crane truck. It has it's own storage area, unloads in seconds, and is MUCH easier to park then the Mack. A Giant Talon I bought for $250.00, and a Luna package deal on the 13 AH 52 battery and BBS02, about 1K total. Here's the video. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LMMhTUvn93E&t=17s Much faster and more fun then walking or using a car, also handy on the job site at lunch time.

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    What a video nice camera work!

  26. #26
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    Quote Originally Posted by J.B. Weld View Post
    That is super dangerous, I've nearly hit cyclists several times due to that while driving. One example would be a driver turning right from a parking lot, the driver is looking for traffic coming from the left and is totally unconcerned about anything to the right. There are many other good reasons not to do it so for your safety please stop.
    My answers for the distracted driver problem are careful route choice and a -very- bright blinking tail light.

    Riding on the road to commute every day comes some risk but for me, a lifelong bike commuter, itís worthwhile because of the benefits to environment, and spirit. Itís not good for everyone though; I always advise coworkers to find a safe route before they even think about commuting on a bike.

    Choosing the right time of day can help too; on my route there is some crazy driving by parents taking their kids to school and by Intel workers racing out of their parking lot at shift change; just by shifting my work hours back by 20 minutes I avoid both of these problem zones. Risk is cumulative, and bicycle commuting is risky.

    And of course donít ride on the wrong side of the street; I used to do this for a very short distance and almost got crushed by a truck coming out of a side street; I was stopped and waiting but he never saw me and he swung into me; after that the crossing of the busy street intersection that I was avoiding with this route didnít seem as dangerous.

    And wear bright and / or reflective clothing; being seen is important even if in summer this means wearing a dorky vest.
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