Electric Bike Basics
E Bikes are all the range and when looking into getting your first bike there are some basics that you really need to know. We have put together some basics that should help you navigate the vast offerings that are out there.
What are the Various Classes of Electric Bikes ?
Class 1 - The motor kicks in only when you pedal, and stops helping at 20 mph.
Class 2 - Also has a pedal-assist mode up to 20 mph plus a purely throttle-powered mode.
Class 3 - Is solely pedal-assist (like class 1), but assistance continues until you hit 28 mph.
What Class bike should I get ?
Class 1- is one of the more popular types. This gives you pedal assist up to 20Mph and gets you some exercise while not killing you up the hills. When you stop pedaling you stop getting the assist.
Class 2 - These models are also popular because they are an option for many of the same trails and roads that the Class 1 bikes are because of the 20Mph limit. THis mode allows for pedal assist as well as throttle.
Class 3 - This allows for travel up to 28Mph which is banned on some trails and paths. Out on the road it is fine. Pedals assist is the name of the game here. This gets you a faster commute for the road but being banned from some areas has disadvantages.
What are the two major drive types?
Mid Drive - This puts the motor in the BB and offers some advantages for riders. Makes the weight of the motor low and centered on the bike to help with handling. Also makes wheel changes easier and flat fixes easier since the bike uses standard wheels.
Rear Drive - This puts the motor in the rear wheel. Feels like you are getting pushed when the motor activates. One disadvantage is that it puts the motor weight in the wheel. Changing rear flats becomes more cumbersome.
Front Wheel - ok so there is a third. Not too many bikes offer this as it makes the steering odd and feels like you are being pulled around. This is not a popular solution and many times home kits go this route.