Escooter trial to start

Pete Owens
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Re: Escooter trial to start

Postby Pete Owens » 20 May 2020, 8:47pm

kwackers wrote:
Pete Owens wrote:I would agree on the speed issue.
And actually front wheel braking wouldn't be safe. The combination of the high centre of gravity of the rider not far behind a very small wheel means very little breaking force would be needed to tip the rider over the front. These things of necessity will have very poor braking so cannot be allowed to go fast.

Have you ever ridden one? The brakes aren't that bad.

Nope, but it is basic physics.
The angle from the centre of gravity to the front wheel contact point determines the maximum braking force before you tip. This is the limiting factor with bicycle braking. The steeper the angle the lower the possible force thus the lower the deceleration. With a scooter the front wheel is much closer, the angle steeper thus the braking performance necessarily inferior.
A lot do have front brakes and most of the common "proper" ones use the front hub motor for regen braking.
I've ridden one with front brakes and I've never come close to tipping it over, all that happens is the front wheel locks.

Did you attempt an emergency stop from full speed on a downhill section?
Did you compare the braking performance with a bike at a similar speed?
Or did you just pootle around at a modest speed gently slowing down in a planned manner
If your front wheel locks then you are skidding; that reduces the braking force and makes control difficult.
As you brake you naturally lean back.

There is no naturally about it. If you are standing on a moving platform that stops then you will naturally be thrown forwards. You need to anticipate this.
Bicycles are just as prone to tipping, in fact I use to rely on my panniers to help prevent it!

They are indeed prone to tipping - it is what limits our braking ability - but nowhere near the same extent as a scooter - its basic geometry.
It is the very fact that we are aware of the limitations of bike brakes that we should be concerned about escooter braking.

Pete Owens
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Re: Escooter trial to start

Postby Pete Owens » 20 May 2020, 8:59pm

kwackers wrote:
Overall as usual it's a hotch potch of nonsense.
Just simplify the whole small e-transport thing and stop introducing layer upon layer of crap.
It's not hard. Remove the need to peddle on an e-bike and then make everything fall into the same place.

End result:
An easy to understand system that doesn't need layer upon layer of legislation for every variant that pops up.


We already have such regulations for motor vehicles - which is what these things are. With specific regulations for low powered two wheelers (ie mopeds) allowing them to be driven by younger drivers and use cycleways in many countries and prohibited from motorways.

The original mopeds were intended as push bikes with the addition of small motor - just the way ebikes are. The trouble is the Japanese manufacturers pushed the regulations to the limit. So although a modern moped still has pedals and a 50cc motor it is a motorbike in all but name.

kwackers
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Re: Escooter trial to start

Postby kwackers » 20 May 2020, 9:54pm

Pete Owens wrote:<snip>

Since your whole post is about braking I hope you don't mind a more generic reply.

So did I try emergency stops?
Of course, I was playing with the scooter, I wanted to see what it could do.
Flat out it's limited to 15mph and braking hard from this is no biggie, is it as good as my tourer? No. Is it as good as my Brommie? Not quite.
But like I said they're not as bad as you think and certainly for the sorts of speeds we're talking about they're more than good enough.

The other point is that 15mph is a fast 'run' for me, I can (and did) hop off the scooter and stop with my legs - that's something I found interesting. The fact I could simply leap off and stay on my feet fairly easily - not something that's particularly easy on a bicycle and certainly not in an emergency.
It even 'paid off' when I was doing some enthusiastic cornering and the front end broke away - I simply stepped off the footplate and stayed upright.

This is a 15mph scooter, so at 12mph then it's all even more so, I can probably hold 12mph using my legs for 5k or so.

I still have the scooter, its currently parked in my hallway and I suspect it's owner isn't in a rush for it back since he's working from home.
Haven't had a go for a while but I'll take it out and have another play.


As for the motor vehicle nonsense, if these are motor vehicles and require licenses etc then so are e-bikes - in fact more so since you can add your own leg motors to the mix for even more white knuckle excitement.
Which takes me back to my point of lets just have a single system for lightweight low powered electric vehicles instead of the growing mess that we've got now.
Simply bundle all lightweight electric vehicles into the same group obeying the same rules and be done with it. I honestly don't care whether that's a motor vehicle or not but please lets stop adding exclusions and special cases for no good reason other than to confuse everyone.

Also my view is that "motor vehicle" implies more power than I can provide with my legs. I honestly don't care that the dictionary definition classes it as a motor vehicle.
If a motor produces no more power than your average person then there's no reason to classify it under the HWC as a motor vehicle other than to fit it to an archaic and out of date system which is obviously struggling under the strain as yet another set of patches gets glued on the top.


Not that it's going to make much difference. Seeing hire scooters bobbing around will simply provide legitimisation for personal e-scooter owners.
IMO the war was already lost and in true government action they do too little too late, merely putting off the time when they have to bend to the inevitable anyway.

Cyril Haearn
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Re: Escooter trial to start

Postby Cyril Haearn » 20 May 2020, 9:58pm

I read some comments on escooters being reintroduced after This Madness (cv), all opposed them
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Xbigman
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Re: Escooter trial to start

Postby Xbigman » 21 May 2020, 3:10pm

Since I started this thread a few things have become apparent.

The escooters the government are trialing are supposedly big chunky ones the size of small mopeds, not the little ones I see all over the place. Why they are trialling something nobody seems to own is a mystery.

I spoke to an escooter owner Tuesday who said his biggest issue is using his to go shopping. Carrying capacity is zero. He wears a backpack but that raises the center of gravity and its much less stable. How to park is an issue. He cables his to a lampost but has to use a pretty thin cable as that is all that will fit through the wheel well and its not that secure. If the government sees these as some sort of car replacement they are delusional.

Braking is better than I thought it would be - until it rains. Then you have no brakes, you just slide.

This trial has c*** up written all over it.


Darren

fastpedaller
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Re: Escooter trial to start

Postby fastpedaller » 21 May 2020, 4:39pm

For my 2p worth...... All very well for Kwackers to think scooters aren't vehicles and there's too many regulations. I can see that if they aren't regulated enough we'll see the 'moped which thinks it's a motorbike' syndrome coming up, with manufacturers and owners thinking it's ok to ride 40mph electric scooters with no rules attached.

kwackers
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Re: Escooter trial to start

Postby kwackers » 21 May 2020, 6:04pm

fastpedaller wrote:For my 2p worth...... All very well for Kwackers to think scooters aren't vehicles and there's too many regulations. I can see that if they aren't regulated enough we'll see the 'moped which thinks it's a motorbike' syndrome coming up, with manufacturers and owners thinking it's ok to ride 40mph electric scooters with no rules attached.

Nothing like a bit of scaremongering eh?

You can argue that about e-bikes too, lots of illegal e-bikes which fall into the 'moped which thinks it's a motorbike' category.

So why is that an argument against simply bundling them all together?
What is the difference between a e-scooter and an e-bike?
Why when it's possible to purchase either of them as an illegal to use vehicle should it only be an argument against the scooters?

There's only really one difference.
Pedals - and they're not even needed on some e-bikes so you could take the chain off and rest your feet on the pegs and still be legal.
(Don't mention 'seat' because you can get scooters with pop up seats).

Nope, I stand by my argument that there's no worthwhile difference and the law could be far simpler and less confusing than it is at present.
If you want to come over all protectionist about your cycling privileges then lets make them all motor vehicles.

Pete Owens
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Re: Escooter trial to start

Postby Pete Owens » 22 May 2020, 12:26am

But it is you that is wanting more complex regulations.

We already have appropriate regulations for a low powered motor vehicle - ie a moped.
These regulations were put in place when the concept of a moped was just a bicycle with a small engine to assist - exactly the market e-bikes are now intended to for. There is no need for more complex regulations - just for manufacturers to make machines that comply with the existing regulations.

kwackers
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Re: Escooter trial to start

Postby kwackers » 22 May 2020, 9:50am

Pete Owens wrote:But it is you that is wanting more complex regulations.

That's an amazing jump in logic.

Current regulations.
You can ride an ebike 15mph limit 250w but no throttle unless it's one of a number of exclusions.
You can't ride a e-scooter unless you're in one of 4 regions and you have some kind of motor vehicle license and it's a commercial rental with 350w and 12.5mph limit.
You can't ride any other form of small electric vehicle.

If I clamp a seat to my scooter it falls into some gray area.
If the chain falls off my e-bike it falls into a grey area.
What happens if I cut up my ebike to give it a running board to stand on (since its one that legally can have a throttle).

I could go on and on pointing out the exclusions, grey areas and a whole host of other inconsistencies.

So how do you work out that by unifying all the regs under a single set of light electric vehicle regulations I'm making it more complex?
Surely you can see how stupid that logic is??

There would be no grey areas. Simply a maximum power, maximum speed and whatever other regulations were required (including licensing if necessary - because to my mind it's absolutely bonkers to claim a 12.5mph scooter needs a license to use the road but not a 15mph e-bike - or tbh any bike).

I challenge you to explain why one single set of regs that covers everything is more complicated than the layers of nonsense that we currently have which fails not only by having lots of different regs but also by what it fails to mention.

Pete Owens
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Re: Escooter trial to start

Postby Pete Owens » 22 May 2020, 10:27am

kwackers wrote:I challenge you to explain why one single set of regs that covers everything is more complicated than the layers of nonsense that we currently have which fails not only by having lots of different regs but also by what it fails to mention.


Simple - No complex regulations at all - just abide by the longstanding existing regulations that apply to low powered motor vehicle.

Mopeds and motor scooter are already legal vehicles.,

kwackers
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Re: Escooter trial to start

Postby kwackers » 22 May 2020, 10:37am

Pete Owens wrote:Simple - No complex regulations at all - just abide by the longstanding existing regulations that apply to low powered motor vehicle.

Mopeds and motor scooter are already legal vehicles.,

Here's a thought experiment for you.

I can go in my garage dig out my angle grinder and welder and slowly turn my e-bike into an e-scooter.
At what point does it become illegal?

You don't know and the reason you don't know is because the rules are full of exclusions and special cases.

Small electric vehicles are only mopeds in your mind - except they're not. Because e-bikes aren't classed as mopeds and neither are e-scooters.

A simple definition of an e-vehicle as "an electrically propelled vehicle having a maximum power of 250w and a maximum assisted top speed of 25kph" is a catch all that is far simpler than the current system and answers not only my thought experiment above but everything else thrown at it.
Not only that but it reduces your 3 classes of moped, e-bike and e-scooter down to two; moped and e-vehicle whilst conveniently getting rid of a load of special cases.

So again, explain how 'my' rules are more complicated than the current ones?

fastpedaller
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Re: Escooter trial to start

Postby fastpedaller » 22 May 2020, 4:40pm

That sounds reasonable to me :D But if you get your angle grinder and welder out, when do the electric scooters or e bikes become cars (or at least under the same set of rules, is it the speed or the number of wheels or both?
In principal I agree with your logic though - it's when things change slightly or a 'new tech' comes along (3 wheeled e bike with 2 seats anyone?) that it starts getting complicated again

kwackers
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Re: Escooter trial to start

Postby kwackers » 22 May 2020, 4:48pm

fastpedaller wrote:That sounds reasonable to me :D But if you get your angle grinder and welder out, when do the electric scooters or e bikes become cars (or at least under the same set of rules, is it the speed or the number of wheels or both?
In principal I agree with your logic though - it's when things change slightly or a 'new tech' comes along (3 wheeled e bike with 2 seats anyone?) that it starts getting complicated again

The beauty of my system is that if you want to make a car with a 250w motor and a 25kph (snigger) top speed then nobody is going to stop you although physics might have something to say.

Even a 350 watt scooter in my experience has difficulty going up moderate hills which is why a power limit is an excellent thing - it prevents silliness.
(TBH I'd throw away the top speed limit too since it's inherently limited by the power - but I'm having trouble selling my wares as is. :lol: )

Xbigman
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Re: Escooter trial to start

Postby Xbigman » 22 May 2020, 4:56pm

I'm sorry but thats rubbish.
The minute you alter any type approved component on an ebike its then no longer an ebike. It's actually quite clear cut if you make any attempt at all to understand the process of defining an ebike.
Its also absolutely clear cut that an ebike is legally an unpowered vehicle because of the restrictions placed on it, where as an escooter is legally a powered vehicle and can't be classed as anything else. The rules on them will therefore be different. Just because you can't see a difference doesn't mean there isn't one.

You're also confusing a lack of enforcement with lack of regulation. The authorities are making no attempt to stop shops openly derestricting ebikes, nor are they making any attempt at stopping shops selling escooters. Yes it's a mess, but it's a mess that no one wants to bother cleaning up. That is not a reason for a free for all.



Darren

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Mick F
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Re: Escooter trial to start

Postby Mick F » 22 May 2020, 5:03pm

We need Thirdcrank back on here to tell us chapter and verse about the road traffic act of 18something.

Mechanically Propelled Vehicles.
There's a law about them.

Bicycles are human powered.
eBikes are human powered to but with some assist.

eScooters are Mechanically Propelled, and therefore require tax, insurance, MOTs, registering with DVLA and a numberplate, and the use of a helmet if on two wheels.

Changing this, will open up a can of worms that the cyclist could very well be penalised and banned from the roads.
Mick F. Cornwall