E-bikes: depressing or what?

Electrically assisted bikes, trikes, etc.
kwackers
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Re: E-bikes: depressing or what?

Postby kwackers » 14 Nov 2017, 12:43pm

meic wrote:You argue that it will only put another 5mph on Lance Armstrong, I argue that it should not put a single mph on Lance Armstrong and that him and flat out velomobiles are already encroaching on the sort of activity that might attract regulation of cyclists (certainly on shared use paths) if they were more common activities. To allow vehicles on shared use paths that allow this to be increased even further is not a good move is my argument.
The speed restriction (on the assist, not the vehicle) seems perfectly reasonable for a vehicle that is cleared for shared path use.

Fair enough, but what about one of my other points.

A second class of e-bike. Bit more power, more realistic top speed which would get more folk out of cars. They seem fairly popular in other countries so no obvious reason why they can't exist here.

750w seems like a good baseline, on a good day it might see 30mph, most of the time it'll do 25 but they're speeds that make the larger distances easier. I've no problem with compulsory insurance for such a bike, nor with exclusions from shared paths. I'd just rather not see it crippled with MOT / registration issues.

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meic
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Re: E-bikes: depressing or what?

Postby meic » 14 Nov 2017, 12:49pm

I have no problem with that. Though there are plenty of complaints that the existing licence system for motorcycles is already too complex.

My CanAm Bombardier manages to squeeze itself into a bit of a hole due to not being large enough cc to sit a test on but too high power to weight ratio to ride without passing that same test!
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Mark R
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Re: E-bikes: depressing or what?

Postby Mark R » 14 Nov 2017, 3:17pm

djnotts wrote:Maybe as part of the DUP support deal they'll demand that NI rules on EPAC machines will be extended to rest of UK:

"In Northern Ireland, you need a moped licence to ride any electric bike. The bike must also be registered, taxed and insured."



:shock: LOL I imagine in NI that particular piece of legislation is treated with the contempt it deserves!

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horizon
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Re: E-bikes: depressing or what?

Postby horizon » 15 Nov 2017, 2:34pm

psmiffy wrote:I'm depressed by people being depressed by people on e bikes - last couple of years that I have toured in Holland and Germany in the summer being overtaken by hordes of "older people" on e bikes having fun - whats not to like


I think it comes down to context (and people always seem to raise specific contexts when discussing whether e-bikes are a good thing or not).

What prompted me to start this thread was the thought (however fleeting) that the Derby scheme had removed (to a degree) one element of the cycling experience - that of the need for hard physical effort in some circumstances (whether that's distance or hills or speed, and for most people it means hills). Normally a cyclist will accept the need for physical effort both as a permanent feature of cycling and as something to reduce through practice. The pay off is fitness but was also cost effectiveness and other advantages that accrue through cycling. E-bikes have allowed us to obtain the other benefits with less physical effort. We now have a choice where previously it would have meant a car or motorcycle. That original lack of choice was a hard task master - it was bike or car. But we thanked him for it. I had to get to the fourth floor of a block of flats the other day without a lift - I ran up without a second thought or having to stop to take breath and I'm 64.

Yes, for an eighty-five year old person with one leg and half a lung in a car-choked city needing to commute 20 miles up a steep hill to work and wanting to enjoy fresh air an e-bike would be an ideal alternative to car. For 16 year old overweight able-bodied youth needing to get to his local KFC, it might not be. But the bike hire scheme won't distinguish betwen the two.
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Ruadh495
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Re: E-bikes: depressing or what?

Postby Ruadh495 » 15 Nov 2017, 3:44pm

horizon wrote:
psmiffy wrote:I'm depressed by people being depressed by people on e bikes - last couple of years that I have toured in Holland and Germany in the summer being overtaken by hordes of "older people" on e bikes having fun - whats not to like


I think it comes down to context (and people always seem to raise specific contexts when discussing whether e-bikes are a good thing or not).

What prompted me to start this thread was the thought (however fleeting) that the Derby scheme had removed (to a degree) one element of the cycling experience - that of the need for hard physical effort in some circumstances (whether that's distance or hills or speed, and for most people it means hills). Normally a cyclist will accept the need for physical effort both as a permanent feature of cycling and as something to reduce through practice. The pay off is fitness but was also cost effectiveness and other advantages that accrue through cycling. E-bikes have allowed us to obtain the other benefits with less physical effort. We now have a choice where previously it would have meant a car or motorcycle. That original lack of choice was a hard task master - it was bike or car. But we thanked him for it. I had to get to the fourth floor of a block of flats the other day without a lift - I ran up without a second thought or having to stop to take breath and I'm 64.

Yes, for an eighty-five year old person with one leg and half a lung in a car-choked city needing to commute 20 miles up a steep hill to work and wanting to enjoy fresh air an e-bike would be an ideal alternative to car. For 16 year old overweight able-bodied youth needing to get to his local KFC, it might not be. But the bike hire scheme won't distinguish betwen the two.


IMO Urban rental / share bikes don't have anything to do with the "cycling experience" but are simply a means to an end; transport which is cheaper than a taxi and easier than walking. As such they might as well be e-bikes, particularly as they are aimed at "customers" who are not regular cyclists.

Not sure how well e-bikes will stand up to the rigors of a share bike's life though. They could be OK, making it an e-bike is one way to mitigate some of the performance disadvantages of a rugged bike (ie weight).

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horizon
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Re: E-bikes: depressing or what?

Postby horizon » 15 Nov 2017, 3:49pm

Ruadh495 wrote:
IMO Urban rental / share bikes don't have anything to do with the "cycling experience" but are simply a means to an end; transport which is cheaper than a taxi and easier than walking.


That's what makes it so depressing - there's no logical answer to that except to go away and mull over the nature of human existence.
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reohn2
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Re: E-bikes: depressing or what?

Postby reohn2 » 15 Nov 2017, 7:02pm

horizon wrote:
psmiffy wrote:I'm depressed by people being depressed by people on e bikes - last couple of years that I have toured in Holland and Germany in the summer being overtaken by hordes of "older people" on e bikes having fun - whats not to like


I think it comes down to context (and people always seem to raise specific contexts when discussing whether e-bikes are a good thing or not).

What prompted me to start this thread was the thought (however fleeting) that the Derby scheme had removed (to a degree) one element of the cycling experience - that of the need for hard physical effort in some circumstances (whether that's distance or hills or speed, and for most people it means hills). Normally a cyclist will accept the need for physical effort both as a permanent feature of cycling and as something to reduce through practice. The pay off is fitness but was also cost effectiveness and other advantages that accrue through cycling. E-bikes have allowed us to obtain the other benefits with less physical effort. We now have a choice where previously it would have meant a car or motorcycle. That original lack of choice was a hard task master - it was bike or car. But we thanked him for it. I had to get to the fourth floor of a block of flats the other day without a lift - I ran up without a second thought or having to stop to take breath and I'm 64.

Yes, for an eighty-five year old person with one leg and half a lung in a car-choked city needing to commute 20 miles up a steep hill to work and wanting to enjoy fresh air an e-bike would be an ideal alternative to car. For 16 year old overweight able-bodied youth needing to get to his local KFC, it might not be. But the bike hire scheme won't distinguish betwen the two.

That outlook takes the choice out of car or bike,we already know the answer,for the fat lad just like the the owd codger it'd be car,the same as it is now.
What the e-bike offers is the possibility of more bikes and less cars,generally people will be pulled to the least line of resistance to move their body about the place,in the present situation the car's the answer.
Like it was said of Sir Christopher Wren,if you wish to seek his legacy look around you.
People generally wish to move themselves and their kelter about conveniently,the bike isn't convenient in the UK for a couple of reasons,firstly a general lack of any meaningful,quality and safe infrastruture whether perceived or actual,and secondly cycling is seen as a purgatory that most people shy away from,especially after a day at work.
When you solve both,cycling will boom like never before and riding(sorry)on that wave will be those who don't see cycling as hard work but as good honest excercise to be enjoyed.
And here's the seekrit,the e-bike will drive(sorry again)the need for that safe and convenient infrastructure as it finds popularity and as the car is gradually outlawed as town and city transport,so everyone benefits!
So as a cyclist,look on the e-bike as a blessing not a curse to wring your hands about in frustration :wink:

Edited for typos
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hemo
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Re: E-bikes: depressing or what?

Postby hemo » 17 Nov 2017, 12:26pm

Depressing why ?
People have got legs they can walk but choose to use polluting cars, rather then bus or train.
The use of ebike has now cut my car use down to under 1k miles a year now.
We all have some sort of central heating but before the 70's was a rare commodity most relied on an open fire or extra layers.
As with all life going thru the ages, it's called progress and these trends eventually become the norm.

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horizon
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Re: E-bikes: depressing or what?

Postby horizon » 17 Nov 2017, 1:41pm

hemo wrote:Depressing why ?
People have got legs they can walk but choose to use polluting cars, rather then bus or train.
The use of ebike has now cut my car use down to under 1k miles a year now.
We all have some sort of central heating but before the 70's was a rare commodity most relied on an open fire or extra layers.
As with all life going thru the ages, it's called progress and these trends eventually become the norm.


In a simplistic way yes, you are right. But further examination shows that something is being lost in the rush to ebikes. Where ebikes replace cars it is hard to see a downside; where ebikes replace bikes then there may be something more to consider. For most people that will be a personal choice: but in the Derby scheme that choice is being foreclosed by someone else.
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Ruadh495
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Re: E-bikes: depressing or what?

Postby Ruadh495 » 17 Nov 2017, 3:48pm

Not sure about that. The option to switch it off will still be there (or will it...) and on a typical hire bike you wouldn't notice the extra weight.

Its also worth considering that if you are a visitor to a city you may be able to bring a conventional bike with you, but if you prefer to ride an e-bike you may not have that option. E-bikes are harder to take on trains (thought some do fold) and not allowed on planes at all.

I still suspect they won't last long though, simply because there is more to go wrong with an e-bike. Though they may help to solve the problem of bikes being "borrowed" permanently. The battery running out will be an incentive to return the bike to a dock. I'm assuming the charging connections will be non-standard? How will they prevent use by under 14s? Something in the hiring system?

E-bikes might not collect at the bottoms of hills in quite the way conventional hire bikes do.

Cynically, though, I suspect they will soon be "borrowed" and stripped for parts.

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Re: E-bikes: depressing or what?

Postby reohn2 » 17 Nov 2017, 6:46pm

horizon wrote:
hemo wrote:Depressing why ?
People have got legs they can walk but choose to use polluting cars, rather then bus or train.
The use of ebike has now cut my car use down to under 1k miles a year now.
We all have some sort of central heating but before the 70's was a rare commodity most relied on an open fire or extra layers.
As with all life going thru the ages, it's called progress and these trends eventually become the norm.


In a simplistic way yes, you are right. But further examination shows that something is being lost in the rush to ebikes. Where ebikes replace cars it is hard to see a downside; where ebikes replace bikes then there may be something more to consider. For most people that will be a personal choice: but in the Derby scheme that choice is being foreclosed by someone elshe.

But the vast majority of people in Derby who will use the bikes will welcome that decision.
I suspect most people who use these bikes won't be cycling enthusiasts,but people who simply wish to travel from AtoB with as little fuss and effort as possible,the Derby bikes will offer that as a possibility that ordinary hire bikes won't,and may be an introduction to a type of cycling you seem to dislike so much as being a sullied and impure facet of transport.
I simply dont understand your point :?
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horizon
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Re: E-bikes: depressing or what?

Postby horizon » 17 Nov 2017, 9:21pm

reohn2 wrote:[ welcome that decision.
I suspect most people who use these bikes won't be cycling enthusiasts,but people who simply wish to travel from AtoB with as little fuss and effort as possible


The sting in the tail of this wonderful machine called the bicycle is that it's useless on hills: its saving grace is that if you do tackle the hills you get a pay-off in terms of fitness and health. Previously, you got that whether you wanted it or not. Now (and the lithium battery really is a now, not a prior), you (and the city) can get all the benefits without the effort. That's fine - except that this uncalled-for side benefit (fitness) won't exist (or at least not to the same extent).

If you think that that isn't a problem then ebikes are the BTSSB. If you think that the hidden secret of the bicycle is not its cheapness and flexibility but its ability to demand good health of you, then, yes, it is a problem.

We can argue about the extent to which an ebike still demands effort (obviously it does) and we can argue about the extent to which an ebike doesn't demand effort. But I think we can agree that an ebike would be a bit useless if it didn't mitigate the need for effort at all. Current medical thinking AFAIK is that the human body needs that peak effort occasionally. Of course, you could always cycle to the gym on your ebike (or cycle on a non-ebike at the weekends).

I simply dont understand your point


Probably because I have made a simple point complicated by trying to cover all the angles.
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meic
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Re: E-bikes: depressing or what?

Postby meic » 17 Nov 2017, 9:26pm

The sting in the tail of this wonderful machine called the bicycle is that it's useless on hills:

Steady on man, that is simply going too far!!! :shock:
Bicycles are merely a tiny bit challenged by hills.
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horizon
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Re: E-bikes: depressing or what?

Postby horizon » 17 Nov 2017, 9:29pm

meic wrote:
The sting in the tail of this wonderful machine called the bicycle is that it's useless on hills:

Steady on man, that is simply going too far!!! :shock:
Bicycles are merely a tiny bit challenged by hills.


Well it doesn't roll up them :lol:

And the raison d'etre for ebikes is ....?
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meic
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Re: E-bikes: depressing or what?

Postby meic » 17 Nov 2017, 9:33pm

Well it doesn't roll up them


That depends on how high the last one was.
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