Taken the plunge.

Electrically assisted bikes, trikes, etc.
kwackers
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Taken the plunge.

Postby kwackers » 20 Oct 2017, 3:43pm

I've taken the plunge and ordered a kit.

A Bafang BBS02 crank driven motor along with a 35v 15Ah battery.

Main reasons for the Bafang:
It seems to be well rated.
I like the idea of a crank driven (and thus adjustable gears) motor.
The controller is part of the motor so no extra box.
Looks a doddle to fit (plus I've got to remove the bottom bracket on my bike anyway since the bearing is knackered).
I don't have to swap out my wheels.

I'm going to try fitting it to my tourer although I may buy another bike and move it over (or perhaps treat myself to a new tourer! :D )

So my thinking is:
I have a 20 mile (each way) commute. I normally use the train (£8.40) and use a bike at both ends. I occasionally cycle it but tbh my fitness is such that I'm fine on the way there but absolutely fubar'd by the time I get home esp if it's windy.
I could cycle it regularly and build my fitness up but that's a bit chicken and eggy - plus if I'm honest I'm not sure I can be bothered. Last time I used to do it regularly it took a couple of months of pain before it got 'easy' and even then there'd be days...

So I want to reduce the effort to be more like cycling 10 miles which I'd be happy with doing on a daily basis.

Cost is roughly the same as 4 months worth of train tickets and coincidentally Paypal give you 4 months interest free credit on purchases. So if I can manage 4 months of commuting with it then it's essentially free and no upfront extra cash (which sells it well to Mrs Kwackers - or will when I tell her).

Only downside is I need to figure out how to get the brake switches to work. I don't want to use the levers that come with the kit so I've bought some disc brake sensors which I think I can modify and fit at the calipers. Plus you lose the front derailleur (I think I've only used it twice anyway, probably doesn't even work anymore...).

reohn2
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Re: Taken the plunge.

Postby reohn2 » 20 Oct 2017, 8:22pm

Good luck with your conversion.I went for a front wheel drive on the tandem and we're amazed how powerful it can be,it has five power settings on No5 all we need to do is turn thepedals and it's away like train! :)
I didn't use the brake switches on ours because I felt they simply weren't needed.
Our conversion kit has a pedal sensor,so when we stop pedalling the power cuts off,and we're hardly going to pedal and brake at the same time.
I was a doddle to fit :) .
-----------------------------------------------------------
I cycle therefore I am.

EddieJ
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Re: Taken the plunge.

Postby EddieJ » 20 Oct 2017, 9:30pm

You mention only one downside, but I can think of another. http://www.pedelecs.co.uk/electric-bike ... -bike-law/




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mjr
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Re: Taken the plunge.

Postby mjr » 20 Oct 2017, 11:43pm

EddieJ wrote:You mention only one downside, but I can think of another. http://www.pedelecs.co.uk/electric-bike ... -bike-law/




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What in particular, for us thickheads? :-?
MJR, mostly pedalling 3-speed roadsters. KL+West Norfolk BUG incl social easy rides http://www.klwnbug.co.uk
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EddieJ
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Re: Taken the plunge.

Postby EddieJ » 21 Oct 2017, 8:38am

The Bafang BBS02 does not meet UK EAPC requirements as it is not a 250w nominal motor, which means that by fitting it, you are riding a motorcycle and as such it can only be used on private land that has no public access or rights of way, or on the road after having registered and insured the bike as a motorcycle.

kwackers
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Re: Taken the plunge.

Postby kwackers » 21 Oct 2017, 9:26am

EddieJ wrote:The Bafang BBS02 does not meet UK EAPC requirements as it is not a 250w nominal motor, which means that by fitting it, you are riding a motorcycle and as such it can only be used on private land that has no public access or rights of way, or on the road after having registered and insured the bike as a motorcycle.

It's not hard to find bike shops converting bikes using BBS02's and claiming they're EAPC approved and despite a bit of intensive searching I can't find anything that claims they're not either.

Either way I wait with baited breath for them to pull me over, although I won't bother holding it.

Mine is going to be permanently in pedelec mode, no throttle so I'll be peddling. I suspect if it looks like a bike and behaves like a bike nobody is going to give it a second glance and without the giant hub to give it away probably less than that.
Battery is probably the biggest give away - but if I was that bothered I'd stick it in a bag on my rack (which probably isn't a bad idea anyways).

TBH if they want to clamp down on illegal ebikes there are a lot of very obvious ones floating around. Most I've noticed are used in throttle only mode. Easy to spot when someone comes past doing near 30 without peddling and I've noticed a few what look like off-the-shelf mtb's with enormous motors (or at least some very big cooling fins) that don't look particularly legal either.

I think I posted something similar in the tea shop. The problem with ebikes is the cat is very much out the bag.
The motors are cheap, they're easy to fit, batteries are improving at a rate of knots.

I guess something needs to be done but I'm not sure what it would be. The various EN specs cover the mechanical construction of an ebike too. I wonder how many converted bikes would pass? I've seen a few on the road now that must be running over 1kw and even where an ebike is "legal" a few seconds 'hacking' soon makes them "illegal".
The great thing about electric motors is that with suitable controllers and battery, you can double or even quadruple the output power at the cost of lifetime and yet still have it stamped "250w".

freeflow
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Re: Taken the plunge.

Postby freeflow » 21 Oct 2017, 9:47am

Mrs F is currently looking at e-bikes. This looks like an interesting option for her current road bike to take the sting out of hills ( and her diabetes). I look forward to hearing how the installation went.

EddieJ
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Re: Taken the plunge.

Postby EddieJ » 21 Oct 2017, 10:38am

kwackers wrote:Either way I wait with baited breath for them to pull me over, although I won't bother holding it.



All well and good until you are involved in accident. You will be riding a motorcycle, and this bike when finished, will require registering and insuring to make it legal for road use. You will also be required by law to wear a crash helmet.

You know full well that your conversion is illegal to use within the UK, other than on private land that has no public or rights of way.

You even conveniently forgot to add the nominal wattage of the motor in your starter post.


Why not just use BBS01 and remain legal?





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kwackers
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Re: Taken the plunge.

Postby kwackers » 21 Oct 2017, 11:26am

EddieJ wrote:All well and good until you are involved in accident. You will be riding a motorcycle, and this bike when finished, will require registering and insuring to make it legal for road use. You will also be required by law to wear a crash helmet.

Why not just use BBS01 and remain legal?

As I said, lots of bike shops converting (and selling) BBS02 equipped bikes and claiming they're EAPC compliant and I can't find anything that says they're not.

As for accidents; it's not like I'm travelling any faster, if anything I'll be going slower (just hoping my average is faster). I actually think it'll be safer if for no other reason than near misses that in the past have been my fault have nearly always been down to me being knackered and making a bad judgement due to lack of thinking power.

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mjr
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Re: Taken the plunge.

Postby mjr » 21 Oct 2017, 7:24pm

That's not how it works, is it? Don't you need something that says that it's a legal conversion kit or that the nominal power is within the legal limit?
MJR, mostly pedalling 3-speed roadsters. KL+West Norfolk BUG incl social easy rides http://www.klwnbug.co.uk
All the above is CC-By-SA and no other implied copyright license to Cycle magazine.

EddieJ
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Re: Taken the plunge.

Postby EddieJ » 21 Oct 2017, 7:35pm

Okay Kwackers, what is the nominal wattage for your BBS02?







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kwackers
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Re: Taken the plunge.

Postby kwackers » 21 Oct 2017, 10:51pm

EddieJ wrote:Okay Kwackers, what is the nominal wattage for your BBS02

I've no idea, why should I care?
AFAIK you can get them with any value you want stamped on the bottom, 250, 500, 750 etc.
When it turns up I'll tell you what's stamped on the bottom (I know which one I've bought)

It's fairly meaningless anyway, since you simply up the battery voltage and up goes the motor wattage and speed with the square of the voltage - but the stamp never changes...
Plenty of 1.5kw drives out there using 50 odd volts and a suitable controller.

I'm running mine at 36v, I guess I *could* up the voltage to 48v - wonder how much power that'll give me?

If I'm honest I suspect the 15mph limit for assist will go out of the window. I bet there aren't many ebikes running that haven't turned that off. A quick google suggests there isn't a controller going that doesn't have at least a dozen websites telling you how to "derestrict" it.
Last edited by kwackers on 21 Oct 2017, 11:03pm, edited 1 time in total.

kwackers
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Re: Taken the plunge.

Postby kwackers » 21 Oct 2017, 11:02pm

mjr wrote:That's not how it works, is it? Don't you need something that says that it's a legal conversion kit or that the nominal power is within the legal limit?

I've no idea. Perhaps something will come with it? How much paperwork gets lost for stuff like this? It's not like there's a central registration place where you can apply for a replacement copy
I suspect if the push comes to the shove I'd play ignorant and claim I bought it off a guy off the internet and he told me it was legit. :lol:

Seriously though, how did this stuff work prior to the man's attempt to legitimise everything?
I remember in the 80's a friend of mine had made an electric bike using the motor off something and a couple of motorcycle batteries.
IIRC he even got tugged riding it and the copper was more interested in how it worked than in reporting him. Spent the best part of an hour chatting whilst we were waiting for him.

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meic
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Re: Taken the plunge.

Postby meic » 22 Oct 2017, 12:50am

Legally, if there was ever to be an unfortunate accident, it would put you in the same position as Charlie Alliston. With the newspapers and the prosecution whipping up a storm about riding an illegal bike/motorbike at the time of the collision.
Yma o Hyd

kwackers
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Re: Taken the plunge.

Postby kwackers » 22 Oct 2017, 8:00am

meic wrote:Legally, if there was ever to be an unfortunate accident, it would put you in the same position as Charlie Alliston. With the newspapers and the prosecution whipping up a storm about riding an illegal bike/motorbike at the time of the collision.

I suspect you'd need to be in the same position as CA, where the modification could be demonstrated to have played a role otherwise it's a technical infringement.