E-bikes: depressing or what?

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

Postby kwackers » 19 Aug 2018, 12:14am

horizon wrote:
OldGeezer wrote:
This thing not only enables me to adjust the level of exercise I want to adopt,


Well this is a going to be obtuse again, but in one sense the bicycle is more obdurate and a hard task master - it doesn't let you adjust the level of exercise (albeit within reason, as you can have gears or get off and walk or take the train, like I do). So it provides a discipline that you don't thank it for at the time but you do when you get to 70 (or at least that is the idea).

I'm not sure what you're saying. If the bike is so hard you get the train how's that helping?

Pre conversion I did 6 miles a day on my bike, post 42. I peddle just as hard but get there quicker.
42 miles was just too much so I got the train and used the bike to and from the station. Post conversion it made it easy enough to use it all the time. 20 mins moderate exercise vs 2 hours moderate exercise.

My 70 year old future self congratulates me on increasing the amount of exercise by moving to electric!

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horizon
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Re: E-bikes: depressing or what?

Postby horizon » 19 Aug 2018, 12:48pm

kwackers wrote:I'm not sure what you're saying.


That's because it's not a particularly obvious point. I see lots of young(ish) fit people on e-bikes. And I hear from lots of young(ish) fit people how they would like to get an e-bike (they don't currently cycle). Down here in Cornwall I can understand that. But otherwise I think they're missing out.

But if I make this point on this forum, I get lots of replies along the lines of "I'm 85 years old with only one leg and commuting to work 35 miles each way over the Alps after a heart operation so an e-bike is a great help". Of course it's a great help. But if e-bikes become commonplace then a lot of perfectly healthy people will be replacing convenience and fitness with convenience. I don't think I have seen anyone on this forum fall into the latter category. And just to add, but I would be concerned if young people took up e-bikes.

Depressing might not have been the right word but the hire scheme does perhaps jump the gun. This is a very subjective (and merely reflective) point of view and I'm hanging on to it only because I think there is something in what I am saying. What I am not doing is knocking e-bikes across the board.
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random37
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Re: E-bikes: depressing or what?

Postby random37 » 19 Aug 2018, 12:57pm

Some work with extra convenience is better the complete convenience of driving everywhere. And I could easily see that the confidence gained from riding with an ebike could lead to greater use of normal bikes, when people realise how great cycling is.

TL;DR: if an eBike makes people enjoy riding more, then good luck to them.

Of course, there will be problems. A lad in Derby nearly ran me and my dog over on the pavement on one of the hire bikes the other week. A normal bike would have slowed him down and made him more aware.

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horizon
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Re: E-bikes: depressing or what?

Postby horizon » 19 Aug 2018, 1:14pm

random37 wrote:Some work with extra convenience is better the complete convenience of driving everywhere. And I could easily see that the confidence gained from riding with an ebike could lead to greater use of normal bikes, when people realise how great cycling is.

TL;DR: if an eBike makes people enjoy riding more, then good luck to them.



(Like I said, it's a fine point I'm making and one that probably only belongs on a cycling forum like this one and BTW, I'm not comparing riding an e-bike with driving - the difference is obvious).

What I'm saying is that cycling involves a lot of the time a sweaty, unpleasant physical challenge, at least at first. On a short ride on a level road it won't, so people hopefully don't use e-bikes for such a trip. It is the physical difficulty that people object to (not the members of this forum I hasten to add). So they believe that using an e-bike will iron out the hills, shorten the distance and reduce the sweat - which it does. But the very physical experience that a bike demands if you are to ride up hills, down dales and longer distances is what gives us the positive health effects. If the e-bike takes that away, then something valuable IMV is lost.

Of course people then say that an e-bike is in fact hard work, that you have to pedal as much, that it gets you out and onto ordinary bikes and that at the end of the day you've had more exercise than you would have had than sitting on the sofa or driving a car. Well, that may be true. But if the idea of the e-bike is to neutralise the hard physical effort then either it does or people will be back in their cars if their hopes are disappointed.

I reckon a lot of the support for e-bikes on this forum is from people who have really experienced the hard work of cycling and who therefore realise what a breeze it is to have the motor. For lots of other people, that won't be the case and the chance they have of getting really fit (while still young) is diminished.
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Marcus Aurelius
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Re: E-bikes: depressing or what?

Postby Marcus Aurelius » 19 Aug 2018, 2:05pm

I’ve got no problems with e bikes. I’ve yet to encounter one that can outpace me all the way up a steep hill. If people who ordinarily wouldn’t ride, do, because of e bikes, that’s a good thing. If you’re concerned about ‘Strava segments’ and ‘KOMs / QOMs’ it’s probably an idea to have a word with yourself.

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horizon
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Re: E-bikes: depressing or what?

Postby horizon » 19 Aug 2018, 2:10pm

A bit of unpicking here - I'm interested in what you say but don't fully understand it.

Marcus Aurelius wrote:I’ve got no problems with e bikes. I’ve yet to encounter one that can outpace me all the way up a steep hill. .


Do you mean you don't have a problem because they aren't as fast as an unpowered bike?

If people who ordinarily wouldn’t ride, do, because of e bikes, that’s a good thing.


Well, what I'm trying to say is that it isn't such a good thing.

If you’re concerned about ‘Strava segments’ and ‘KOMs / QOMs’ it’s probably an idea to have a word with yourself


This I didn't understand at all.
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Marcus Aurelius
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Re: E-bikes: depressing or what?

Postby Marcus Aurelius » 19 Aug 2018, 2:49pm

horizon wrote:A bit of unpicking here - I'm interested in what you say but don't fully understand it.

Marcus Aurelius wrote:I’ve got no problems with e bikes. I’ve yet to encounter one that can outpace me all the way up a steep hill. .


Do you mean you don't have a problem because they aren't as fast as an unpowered bike?

If people who ordinarily wouldn’t ride, do, because of e bikes, that’s a good thing.


Well, what I'm trying to say is that it isn't such a good thing.

If you’re concerned about ‘Strava segments’ and ‘KOMs / QOMs’ it’s probably an idea to have a word with yourself


This I didn't understand at all.


1st. No, I don’t really care, that was a tongue in cheek comment.


2nd. The more the merrier.

3rd. Some people get the massive buttock if someone on a powered bike ‘beats’ them, on Strava et. al. That’s very sad.

reohn2
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Re: E-bikes: depressing or what?

Postby reohn2 » 19 Aug 2018, 3:28pm

random37 wrote:Some work with extra convenience is better the complete convenience of driving everywhere.........

In a nutshell!
And at a fraction of the cost of a car too.
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reohn2
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Re: E-bikes: depressing or what?

Postby reohn2 » 19 Aug 2018, 3:46pm

Horizon
A point I've mentioned before,if E-bikes take off like a house on fire in the UK,have you considered the positives for cycling in general ie; less cars,potential for better cycling facilities from a group to big to ignore by politrickians?
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horizon
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Re: E-bikes: depressing or what?

Postby horizon » 19 Aug 2018, 5:36pm

reohn2 wrote:Horizon
A point I've mentioned before,if E-bikes take off like a house on fire in the UK,have you considered the positives for cycling in general ie; less cars,potential for better cycling facilities from a group to big to ignore by politrickians?


Generally in every comparison between e-bikes and everything else, e-bikes win hands down. My only proviso is that some people will miss out on the real boost to health that cycling can provide because they're frightened (for want of a better word) of the potential physical exertion. The typical response to this is that these people aren't going to cycle anyway so an e-bike is better than the car (which obviously I agree with). Well, yes.

Other people say that a real shift to e-bikes will have adverse environmental consequences compared to bikes: the response to this is usually, well that's better than cars.

You can see that I'm labouring a point here. There is also a danger of course that supporting bikes against e-bikes represents a counsel of perfection - I accept that. What triggered this thread was my reaction to the Derby e-bike scheme: I felt they had missed a trick. That doesn't mean that I considered e-bikes bad in all circumstances - it depends what you are comparing them to.
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reohn2
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Re: E-bikes: depressing or what?

Postby reohn2 » 19 Aug 2018, 6:38pm

horizon wrote:
reohn2 wrote:Horizon
A point I've mentioned before,if E-bikes take off like a house on fire in the UK,have you considered the positives for cycling in general ie; less cars,potential for better cycling facilities from a group to big to ignore by politrickians?


Generally in every comparison between e-bikes and everything else, e-bikes win hands down. My only proviso is that some people will miss out on the real boost to health that cycling can provide because they're frightened (for want of a better word) of the potential physical exertion. The typical response to this is that these people aren't going to cycle anyway so an e-bike is better than the car (which obviously I agree with). Well, yes.

Other people say that a real shift to e-bikes will have adverse environmental consequences compared to bikes: the response to this is usually, well that's better than cars.

You can see that I'm labouring a point here. There is also a danger of course that supporting bikes against e-bikes represents a counsel of perfection - I accept that. What triggered this thread was my reaction to the Derby e-bike scheme: I felt they had missed a trick. That doesn't mean that I considered e-bikes bad in all circumstances - it depends what you are comparing them to.


I understand where you're coming from but the positives far out weigh the negatives by a considerably large margin if the government would really see the real value of the bike E-assist or not instead of just paying lipservice to the cycling lobby .
The exercise both modes offer is considerable over not cycling at all,with the biggest obsticle to cycling being a lack of decent infrastructure not the fear of exercise,add to that beligerent and aggressive driving habits left unchecked by a depleted and overwhelmed police force being the main reasons people don't cycle more.
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Cunobelin
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Re: E-bikes: depressing or what?

Postby Cunobelin » 19 Aug 2018, 6:50pm

Marcus Aurelius wrote:I’ve got no problems with e bikes. I’ve yet to encounter one that can outpace me all the way up a steep hill. .


Personally at my age, I have no interest in outpacing anyone, my interest is making my journey easier and less wear on ageing joints. The fact that I cannot outpace anyone is a total irrelevance



If people who ordinarily wouldn’t ride, do, because of e bikes, that’s a good thing.

Excellent

If you’re concerned about ‘Strava segments’ and ‘KOMs / QOMs’ it’s probably an idea to have a word with yourself


I have never used Strave, or similar so again a total irrelevance

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horizon
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Re: E-bikes: depressing or what?

Postby horizon » 19 Aug 2018, 7:35pm

There's more information about the Derby scheme here:

https://news.derby.gov.uk/uks-largest-e ... -of-derby/

and here:

https://www.derbytelegraph.co.uk/news/d ... ch-1726247

It looks like a well organised scheme but there's no indication AFAICS as to why they chose electric over non-powered bikes. But what is clear is that it is aimed at students and the University has put money into the scheme - £100,000. So mainly fit young people. I know there are some hills to the north of Derby but the city is AFAIK mostly flat. Derby is about 10 or 11 miles across so I'm guessing that a lot of journeys will be about half that.

I cannot see that there is a case for electric bikes in Derby. I would have liked to have heard more from the scheme organisers but if anyone else can fill me in I'm happy to listen.
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random37
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Re: E-bikes: depressing or what?

Postby random37 » 19 Aug 2018, 9:13pm

horizon wrote:I cannot see that there is a case for electric bikes in Derby. I would have liked to have heard more from the scheme organisers but if anyone else can fill me in I'm happy to listen.


People like them. Bike use generally in Derby is well up from when I moved there 8 years ago. If it gets bums of any age on saddles, it's a good reason.

It's a shame the council is so narrow-sighted in other areas.

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horizon
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Re: E-bikes: depressing or what?

Postby horizon » 19 Aug 2018, 10:51pm

By the looks of it it's a good scheme though it's a bit early to say how it's going. It certainly won't do Derby any harm. But I would have liked to have known more about the rationale - for example the organisers just might have discarded the idea that 18 year old students can be persuaded to ride a bicycle for a three mile journey to college. The fact that they are tempting students out of cars is already telling me that I'm out of touch. Mind you, if they are intelligent enough to go to university, you would think they are intelligent enough to think about cycling there.
Let's just get Brexit done so that we can get on with the important job of re-joining the EU!