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E-bike... more musings
Last Post 07/27/2023 07:24 AM by Evan Solida. 8 Replies.
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07/06/2023 04:51 PM
Group text went out about a 30 mile gravel ride- probably 25 people on the text, most are just a phone number but I know a couple of the guys. Sure, gravel sounds good so I messaged that I'm in. Three other guys showed up and they were all on e-bikes! Couple of hours and it allowed two of them to ride at a decent pace, the other guy can more than hold his own on a regular bike so I called him a slacker. Anyway it was fun to ride with an 80 year old who was just having fun and not dangling off the back or left to fend for himself. The 4th guy is a bit younger than me but is packing some extra weight and lacks fitness to hang with a group w/o assist.

Gravel e-bikes. I'm completely cool with them.

MBT? Different story. They seem to changing the trails due to their weight, and the wheel torque appears to be tearing out some of the rock features. I'm not much of a fan due to the trail damage.
Orange Crush


07/06/2023 06:34 PM
I have a friend like that who is 10 years younger than me but invested in a gravel e-bike mostly for commuting purposes (on a 20 mile gravel trail along water with lots of wind). But also because in the past I wore him down on some epic gnarly rides. So I call him a slacker as well. Current conversations often revolve around whether a particular gravel ride I did is Tom-level or whether Tom would curse, haha.

We rode together a couple times this winter, him on his e-rig, me on regular bike drafting behind him the entire way. Awesome, it allowed me to go quite a bit faster than I would have otherwise.

He's also shown up for a couple of our club road rides on his regular rig and its clear that the e-assist has caused him to lose a bit of edge. But all good; its great to see the huge increase in cyclists now that there's e-assist. Easily doubled the number of cyclists commuting around here.


07/06/2023 08:24 PM
I've owned a few emotos (great fun but the porky batteries are an issue) and two e cars, but no e pedal bikes. Posts like this get me closer to getting one, thanks.
Tangent observation: In ice moto land, "there is no replacement for displacement" (in terms of torque, which rules in low rpm land. Cyclists live in low rpm land and get this. Wout has torque). But now there is a replacement: the electric motor.


07/19/2023 12:35 PM
Hi Dale, I don't think e-mtbs cause more damage to the trails than regular mtb, at least not where I ride (Colorado's Front Range). Some trail systems allow them, others don't, I guess it depends on which jurisdiction. I am no fan of e-mtbs, I still ride my Yeti ASR (I'm 58 and slower every year) and I admit it, it annoys me when I get passed uphill by an e-mtb, I'm that shallow. I shouldn't care but it bugs me, especially when the rider is young(er) - that said without knowing anything about their motivations or circumstances. I wouldn't advocate to ban them off the trails though and I understand that for some people they're the entry to the sport, otherwise it's just "too hard". I despise the hype that "it's still a workout". That's BS compared to climbing on your own power (even with good, appropriate gearing as opposed to, say, someone riding single speed ouch). Sorry for the long rant.


07/20/2023 12:52 PM
I started off as a proponent, but seeing their rise, many times by folks who have not ridden self propelled bicycle much if at all prior, I've changed my position - a lot more dangerous/ignorant riders on the roads, trails and MUT's. Much more momentum with their speed and weight combined with lack of education in etiquette... and many getting rid of the speed restrictors. I NOW HATE THEM.

Yes, I may need one someday soon just to enjoy getting out, but I will carry years of respect and knowledge with me in being a responsible member of the cycling community.

Get off my lawn!


07/20/2023 09:13 PM
If you think they're bad on the trails, check out NYC delivery bikes. No regard for traffic flow, pedestrians, one-way streets, sidewalks, stop signs, traffic signals, or common sense. They get paid to deliver fast and often. NYC and NYS are at a loss on how to regulate them efficiently. One approach is to classify them as motor vehicles and require registration or to hold their employers responsible for any accidents.
Not all e-bikers are evil. I met an elderly couple (73 years old, 2 beyond me) on Cape Cod who were pedalling north along the coast beach to beach. They used the e-assist on hills or when they needed a rest. It might be in my future, but I'm not there yet.


07/20/2023 10:39 PM
Absolutely agreed Smokey on not all e-bikers being bad, just enough to ruin it for the rest of us. Like I said, there may be a day when I go that route... Hopefully not too soon ; )
Cosmic Kid


07/24/2023 10:58 AM
There is a HUGE difference in the types of bikes (and purpose obviously) between what delivery drivers are using and stuff you see on trails, etc.

Those bikes in NYC are complete junk and are giving e-bikes a really bad reputation. There absolutely needs to be some regulation on those bikes, but it is the reputable products that are bearing the brunt of the situation.
Just say "NO!" to WCP!!!!


07/27/2023 07:24 AM
Agree with CK on this. A specialized turbo or any of the fancy full-sus e-bikes on the market couldn't be more different from these things people are using to zip around town without a care.

And let's just call them what they are. MOPEDS. Literally, motorized pedal bikes. The motor just happens to be electric now but these things aren't much slower than a Honda Elite LE from the early 90's. And if I recall, those things did require a plate and license to use, even at 13 or 14 years old.

Grouping these electric MOPEDS in with a $10K Specialized Turbo is ridiculous. Not the same thing.
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