Author Topic: Inexpensive E-assist Bicycle  (Read 993 times)

jpdx

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Inexpensive E-assist Bicycle
« on: September 11, 2019, 04:07:08 PM »
I'd like to buy a used e-assist bike in the $500 range. This is primarily for pulling a Burley trailer on a uphill daily commute, 5 miles roundtrip. Any suggestions on where to start?

Ideally, this bike would work for both my wife and I so it can be shared. The problem is she has long legs and prefers a larger frame than I, so perhaps a step-through bike is more likely to fit both of us?

ministashy

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Re: Inexpensive E-assist Bicycle
« Reply #1 on: September 12, 2019, 01:23:28 AM »
Not sure you're going to find a decent e-bike for $500 that isn't supremely heavy, limited on battery, etc.  Have you thought about doing a conversion kit instead?  I can personally vouch for this one being very reliable--and since it's front-wheel based, it's relatively easy to swap wheels if you want to use your bike without the extra weight of the electric assist.  https://hilltopperbikes.com/product-category/electric-bike-kits/

jpdx

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Re: Inexpensive E-assist Bicycle
« Reply #2 on: September 12, 2019, 09:21:30 AM »
All options are on the table, but if I go with a conversion kit, then DW won't be able to use it since she cannot comfortably ride my bike. We were hoping to get a third bike that can accommodate both of us with a simple seat height adjustment. So I am thinking a "step through" bike would be a good option.

What's your opinion of this bike: Athens 250 EG? It sells for $1200 new but there is a used one for $500 on CL. There are a handful of others in the $ 350-750 range on CL.

Monkey stache

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Re: Inexpensive E-assist Bicycle
« Reply #3 on: September 12, 2019, 10:46:27 AM »
What's your opinion of this bike: Athens 250 EG? It sells for $1200 new but there is a used one for $500 on CL. There are a handful of others in the $ 350-750 range on CL.

I don't have experience with that bike but be careful with buying used as the battery is usually the first to go and they are very expensive replace. A quick google search says a replacement battery for that bike is $550.

I really like https://electricbikereview.com/ for thorough, fair ebike reviews.

jpdx

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Re: Inexpensive E-assist Bicycle
« Reply #4 on: September 13, 2019, 10:49:32 AM »
Holy cow. $550 for a battery! Yes that is concerning when buying a used e-bike. Is that battery price typical, and are there any less expensive alternatives?

Mrsweisass

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Re: Inexpensive E-assist Bicycle
« Reply #5 on: September 13, 2019, 12:22:11 PM »
I'd like to buy a used e-assist bike in the $500 range. This is primarily for pulling a Burley trailer on a uphill daily commute, 5 miles roundtrip. Any suggestions on where to start?

Ideally, this bike would work for both my wife and I so it can be shared. The problem is she has long legs and prefers a larger frame than I, so perhaps a step-through bike is more likely to fit both of us?

As an e-cargo bike rider, I would recommend keeping an eye out for a good used bike. Iíve noticed some great deals on spicy currys (longtail cargo bike), etc., and also for Madsens (what I ride, which has a big bucket behind the rider and eliminates the need for the trailer.) a great feature on my Madsen is that you can adjust the seat height... my partner is 8 inches taller than I am and we both ride it.  if you are patient, you will find a good deal. If you are in a metro area, join the local bicycle group, and if you are on FB, I would recommend checking out cargo bike republic. People post great deals there.
« Last Edit: September 13, 2019, 12:23:47 PM by Mrsweisass »

Mrsweisass

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Re: Inexpensive E-assist Bicycle
« Reply #6 on: September 13, 2019, 12:27:34 PM »
Not sure you're going to find a decent e-bike for $500 that isn't supremely heavy, limited on battery, etc.  Have you thought about doing a conversion kit instead?  I can personally vouch for this one being very reliable--and since it's front-wheel based, it's relatively easy to swap wheels if you want to use your bike without the extra weight of the electric assist.  https://hilltopperbikes.com/product-category/electric-bike-kits/

I would do careful search on the options. With a big uphill commute, a mid-drive motor is likely a better investment. And my conversion kit alone (Bafang 1000w) was nearly 1k. Way cheaper than a car though.

Mrsweisass

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Re: Inexpensive E-assist Bicycle
« Reply #7 on: September 13, 2019, 12:28:55 PM »
Holy cow. $550 for a battery! Yes that is concerning when buying a used e-bike. Is that battery price typical, and are there any less expensive alternatives?

If you want a good battery they are expensive. You should have a bike shop that specializes in e bikes check anything you consider purchasing out before you bite.

jpdx

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Re: Inexpensive E-assist Bicycle
« Reply #8 on: September 29, 2019, 12:00:11 AM »
As an e-cargo bike rider, I would recommend keeping an eye out for a good used bike. Iíve noticed some great deals on spicy currys (longtail cargo bike), etc., and also for Madsens (what I ride, which has a big bucket behind the rider and eliminates the need for the trailer.)...

A lot of people around here use Xtracycle "hooptie" longbikes and cargo bikes to carry their kids, but I am worried about weather. It's cold and rainy for a large portion of the year and the trailer provides good protection -- at least for the little one. I suppose an advantage of a longbike/cargobike is that the child will not outgrow it as fast as the trailer. Cost will likely be the deciding factor, and I know longbikes/cargobikes with e-assist are quite spendy even in the used marketplace.

Goldielocks

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Re: Inexpensive E-assist Bicycle
« Reply #9 on: September 29, 2019, 12:22:24 AM »
You have a very short round trip, so a lead acid battery should be more than fine for you, but these, although cheap, are not as available as they used to be 10 years ago.  If there is a hill, then you only need the battery one way.. (and it can suck up power on the uphill).

The conversion kit with a front wheet replacement is the easiest, with the battery sitting on a rear rack.  You won't be jumping over logs or curbs with the front wheel kit, but otherwise they work great and are the cheapest options.

Getting an ideal fit of a bike is less important when you have the motor on.  That last 1" adjustment really is not noticed. 


norajean

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Re: Inexpensive E-assist Bicycle
« Reply #10 on: September 29, 2019, 02:58:59 PM »
Uphill both ways?

Car Jack

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Re: Inexpensive E-assist Bicycle
« Reply #11 on: September 29, 2019, 06:35:26 PM »
Uphill both ways?

....and in the snow all year long.....

jpdx

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Re: Inexpensive E-assist Bicycle
« Reply #12 on: October 07, 2019, 10:52:30 PM »
Update: we just did a test ride on the Athens EG 350, which is highly-rated for an entry-level bike. Amazing to feel this thing rip right up a hill like nothing. The power takes some getting used to while performing slow and tight maneuvers, but otherwise it's a lot of fun and should extend our range considerably. The disk brakes on the bike we tested squeaked like mad, so I'm going to insist the store tune that up.

The price is $1400 -- low for an e-bike, but I wish it was lower still. It's easy to justify the cost though. Our family "only" has one car, and having this bike would allow for more flexibility and reduce schedule conflicts. A new credit card with $550 bonus is in the mail to make the purchase.

IslandFiGirl

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Re: Inexpensive E-assist Bicycle
« Reply #13 on: October 08, 2019, 10:54:09 PM »