Advice please re conversion

Electrically assisted bikes, trikes, etc.
charliebw
Posts: 1
Joined: 5 Dec 2018, 10:34am

Advice please re conversion

Postby charliebw » 5 Dec 2018, 10:53am

I don't know much about electric bikes so would appreciate some advice please. My wife is going to buy an electric bike next year and I'm not sure I will keep up with her on my non electric machine. I don't particularly want to invest in a full blown electric machine myself and was wondering about converting my existing bike. Its a 2010 Gyhllside tourer - 725 frameset, butterfly bars and v brakes, good quality wheels. Our cycling is largely in the flatlands of East Anglia but we often go away to Herefordshire and Scotland. I would ideally like an arrangement that I could easily remove if I wanted to revert back to its current set up, but simple to set up for when we go away to hillier parts. I would like something with a battery that could easily be removed and charged up over a lunch time break in a pub. I would be looking to be able to cover up to 50 miles a day on hilly terrain From my little knowledge I suspect a front wheel kit would probably be the solution but I would be interested to hear your views. Recommendations of set ups, good makes of kits, good companies to fit the equipment would all be very helpful. My budget would stretch to £1,000. Thanks Charlie.

Oldjohnw
Posts: 179
Joined: 16 Oct 2018, 4:23am
Location: Northumberland

Re: Advice please re conversion

Postby Oldjohnw » 5 Dec 2018, 11:44am

I got mine here last year:

http://www.electric-bike-conversions.co.uk/

Cost about £600. Front wheel motor, luggage rack battery.

Took me all round Perthshire fully loaded for camping. I get between 40 and 80 miles depending on load, terrain, wind and human weakness. I am nearly 70. It has transformed my life.

hemo
Posts: 272
Joined: 16 Nov 2017, 5:40pm
Location: West Sussex

Re: Advice please re conversion

Postby hemo » 5 Dec 2018, 11:55pm

If you can get to Southend, woosh bikes can fit a conversion to your bike for about £75 fitting fee. They also sell various bike kits from front, rear and mid/crank drive, CS and spares are top class and nothing is to little for them to help out with.


The Ghyllside ideally would benefit with a light weight hub drive rather then a heavy front hub, for <1k have a look at the Woosh Karoo no reason why you can't put butterflies on it. Choose from 3 battery sizes, an unbiased review was done by a 12 st rider who managed a very good 75 miles range in East Sussex using some hilly routes for testing. If you can get to Southend you can test ride.

Rear wheel drive is far better then front drive.

http://wooshbikes.co.uk/?karoo

stodd
Posts: 41
Joined: 6 Jun 2018, 10:24am

Re: Advice please re conversion

Postby stodd » 6 Dec 2018, 11:27am

I would like something with a battery that could easily be removed and charged up over a lunch time break in a pub.
Most batteries take quite a long time to charge (3-4 hours), so either a long lunch or just a partial charge. There are faster chargers but they can reduce battery life.

Cytronex https://www.cytronex.com/ do very lightweight front kits that should be fairly easy to swap in and out, but they are very pricey and pretty low power batteries. Swytch https://www.swytchbike.com/ might be even easier to swap in and out, but there have been quite a few moans about them on pedalecs recently.

I certainly agree that Woosh are well worth talking to, especially if they are relatively close to you. We got a front wheel drive for our tandem from there, but online. We chose it partly because it looked as if it would be easy to fit (it was) and partly because of lack of availability of appropriate alternatives with 700C wheel at the time. Rear wheel is probably better overall, but the front works very well; very helpful on slight uphill slippery grass yesterday as it gives two wheel drive.

Finally, look on pedalecs site as well for advice. http://www.pedelecs.co.uk/forum/forums/ ... n-kits.42/

Phil Fouracre
Posts: 747
Joined: 12 Jan 2013, 12:16pm
Location: Deepest Somerset

Re: Advice please re conversion

Postby Phil Fouracre » 6 Dec 2018, 4:25pm

I’ve used Cyclotricity in Southampton, for all my kits so far, two front and two rears, all easy to fit, sensible prices and working great!
Never attribute to malice that which is adequately explained by stupidity

reohn2
Posts: 31868
Joined: 26 Jun 2009, 8:21pm

Re: Advice please re conversion

Postby reohn2 » 6 Dec 2018, 4:50pm

Oldjohnw wrote:I got mine here last year:

http://www.electric-bike-conversions.co.uk/

Cost about £600. Front wheel motor, luggage rack battery......

I'll second that,good company to do business with.
Our front wheel tandem kit fitted to our Circe has a 17ah battery and get us almost 40miles thread here:- viewtopic.php?f=55&t=117719
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I cycle therefore I am.

hemo
Posts: 272
Joined: 16 Nov 2017, 5:40pm
Location: West Sussex

Re: Advice please re conversion

Postby hemo » 6 Dec 2018, 10:24pm

Buy the Swytch kit via Panda Bikes at your own peril.
There have been teething issue so far with controller/motor power issues, cs tends to be via email and very slow at replying.

hoppy58
Posts: 182
Joined: 9 Mar 2011, 3:07pm

Re: Advice please re conversion

Postby hoppy58 » 12 Dec 2018, 9:02am

I certainly agree that Woosh are well worth talking to, especially if they are relatively close to you. We got a front wheel drive for our tandem from there, but online.


Just out of interest, which kit did you use? We have a Cannondale MT800 tandem, which is reasonably light as Tandems go, and we have a combined weight of about 120kg. We are considering a DIY electric conversion, but are unsure of battery size etc. ...would prefer a frame mounted battery as we part-dismantle the tandem to transport on a rear mounted car-bike rack and a rack mounted battery would stick out too far, if you see what I mean! I was thinking of a front hub drive simply because it is the easiest to fit and could be transferred to another bike or sold off if it didn't work out! Budget is probably around £500ish mark.

We would just be looking for a bit of help on hills as once on the flat and on minor gradients we are ok.

stodd
Posts: 41
Joined: 6 Jun 2018, 10:24am

Re: Advice please re conversion

Postby stodd » 12 Dec 2018, 3:45pm

Our tandem is a fairly basic Viking, not particularly light but sensible components on the whole, and I guess we come in at around 24 stone, 150kg. The Woosh kit we used was the front XF07 with the 13Ah battery. This was partly because of what was available for 700c wheels at the time we bought. Also easy to fit as a first kit installation experience. Frame mounted battery, very easy to get on and off. (We charge it off in winter because people say it is bad to charge at too low a temperature.) Woosh made sure all the cables were appropriate lengths for the tandem.

It is somewhat underpowered but still helps us a lot on moderate hills (Winchester) and around generally. We still need quite a bit of our own input on steeper hills; but that is ok and what we expected. Woosh suggested the SWX02 48V kit, but it was not available in 700c at the time, or the BPM front but that was 350w so not strictly legal.

We haven't had any problems from slippage on hills which is sometimes levelled against front hub motors; and indeed the front hub has helped on slightly uphill slippery grass as we get motor drive at the front and ours at the back.

That battery gets us comfortable 20 miles, mostly assist 2/5, boosting to 3/5 for the hills or busier roads we want to get rid of faster. I think it would do 30 but ...???

hoppy58
Posts: 182
Joined: 9 Mar 2011, 3:07pm

Re: Advice please re conversion

Postby hoppy58 » 13 Dec 2018, 2:47pm

Thanks...lots to think about!

Lodge
Posts: 45
Joined: 28 Feb 2016, 8:59pm
Location: Staffordshire Moorlands

Re: Advice please re conversion

Postby Lodge » 15 Dec 2018, 12:03am

What sort of speed do you normally tour at unassisted? My wife has a Tern Vektron which is Bosch powered, 250 W. I have a Brompton, un-powered except for my own legs and we tour quite happily together (week long Tour d'Alsace this last summer, both flat Rhine plain and the foothills of the Vosges). Don't forget that in the EU ebikes are limited to 16 mph / 25 kph. Yes she can leave me standing on the hills. But she doesn't have to! It's quite easy for her to stay with me and chat.

stodd
Posts: 41
Joined: 6 Jun 2018, 10:24am

Re: Advice please re conversion

Postby stodd » 15 Dec 2018, 9:26am

What sort of speed do you normally tour at unassisted?
We've never been that sporty; mainly 5 mile extended shopping trips or 20 mile half-day trips rather than tours. Many years ago (age 30-40) I could keep up 18mph on the flat but 15 was more usual. Later (age 50-60) 12 became more my norm, and now (age 71) 10 on an unassisted bike or a laid back 12 on a e-bike (solo (Tour) or tandem (2/5)) with less effort than 10 on the regular bike, and occasional bursts to 15 (Sport or 3/5) on busier roads we want to get over as fast as possible.

Lodge
Posts: 45
Joined: 28 Feb 2016, 8:59pm
Location: Staffordshire Moorlands

Re: Advice please re conversion

Postby Lodge » 16 Dec 2018, 10:43pm

sounds like you’re doing very well! My average these days at age 61 years is only 10 mph unassisted on flattish ground (Brompton, Patria Terra tourer or ICE Sprint). Much slower (6 mph) in the hilly Peak District. Though I will admit that I’m planning to fit a motor to the Sprint in the New Year to cope with the hills. And that I borrow the wife’s Bosch-Tern from time-to-time to ride the 20 miles to and from town (Leek) on a route which involves 550 metres of climbing to and from. So I’m watching this post intently as I love my Patria Tourer and would consider adding a motor to that, similar to you adding one to your Ghyllside 731.

I did have a go on a Pendix equipped bike the other week. Nice simple design, in theory, and easy to have fitted (and remove) but it has very wide Q factor that was quite uncomfortable for my narrow hips. Also felt slightly strange as it is direct drive with a torque sensor and so pushes you along in proportion to every separate bit of pressure on the pedals. Bit jerky in other words. The wife’s Bosch is far smoother. Also heard of reliability and quality control problems with the Bafang. The dealer I spoke to said he’s given up on them as, when he’s had a bad batch, 80% failed with electrical problems. Other batches on the other hand have been perfect. Puts it down to bad batches of electronic components from Chinese suppliers.