Looking to purchase but have a couple questions.

Discussion in 'General Questions' started by kenster, May 11, 2008.

  1. kenster

    kenster Member

    Hi, I asked these questions in the introduction forum but thought I would get better respone here. I'm looking at different systems and do not have a motorized bike yet.

    I want to use the bike in places where a motor is not permited. Which system is the easiest to stop the motor and use as a normal bike? I'm almost sold on the belt drive but I'm concerned that removing the belt all the time will be a hassle.

    The second concern I have is I need to keep my bike in my apartment. Has anyone done this and is the smell of gas a problem?

    Third I'm in Southern California, I'm a little torn about registering the bike as a moped and then being subject to laws like brake lights, motorcycle helmet and not being permited in the bike lane. Also, even if I register by mail, I don't think they will let me take the test on a bike since it lacks certain required equipment. Anyone else in So Cal skip the registration and take their chances? Anyone know the fine for riding an unregistered motorbike.

    Fourth, I'd like to ask some seasoned rider for opinions. The most dangerous area I ride in is the last four blocks to the beach where the bike lane ends. It is packed with peolple in cars looking for parking and just not seeing bicycles. I have many close calls with doors opening, right turners and parked cars pulling into traffic. The danger in this area seems to be worse because bikes are required to keep to the right. I think It will actually be safer if I can get up to the speed of traffic and stay in the middle of the lane for those few blocks like a motorcycle. Anyone else in a high traffic area with this kind of problem? Thank you for you help.
    Last edited: May 11, 2008

  2. Marktur

    Marktur Member

    Tought couple of questions...about keeping it in your apt...I am not sure...It's not stinking up the garage...don't forget to turn off the fuel. I would suggest you keep something under it though..the other day I was fighting with my kill switch, and couldn't get it started (bad switch) so the motor was flooded, and black oily residue started dripping from the pipe...

    About bad drivers: I live in one of the "Snowbird" capitals here in Palm Beach. People are driving that are so handicapped with age that I'm amazed when you see them get out of the car...they can barely walk! So how are they possibly going to be able to hit their brakes when they finally do see you? You just have to be VERY careful. Maybe ride the bike as a bike in that last 4 blocks to the beach...
  3. kerf

    kerf Guest

    Forget riding at traffic speeds, these things aren't designed for that. California, I don't know. Any rack mount from Staton or GEBE will have a sealed fuel system, so gas fumes shouldn't be a problem but I would recommend inside storage with an empty fuel tank. The Staton chain drive will be the most convenient to peddle due to the freewheel design but a friction drive only requires raising the drive roller for no drag peddling. There is a wet road issue with them though.

    Funny how life's just a bunch of trade offs.
    Last edited by a moderator: May 11, 2008
  4. augidog

    augidog Banned

    the GEBE belt can be taken off (or put back on) in about 30 seconds...just tie it to the stays for storage for extended pedaling-only.
  5. kenster

    kenster Member

    The traffic speed is not too fast in this area, maybe 20 to 25 would keep me up with traffic. If I can stay in the middle I won't be forced to the curb by a right turn.
  6. I would definitely go rack mount but if your really concerned about laws and gas fumes then maybe the electric option may not be too bad. If you don't venture out too far it may be what you need especially if your willing to pedal some.
    Right now anyway it seems to be more acceptable,getting some news coverage but the gas guys are catching up.
  7. kerf

    kerf Guest

    I hope you will excuse my ignorance but around here, cars only go 25 when they slow down for stop signs. Most don't stop, just slow down.
  8. kenster

    kenster Member

    Actually, once I have a motor I may be able to avoid the whole mess by going the long way around.
  9. eljefino

    eljefino Member

    Read your laws carefully, usually bikes just have to stay "as far right as practicable", if you have to fight it in court just say it's impractical because you could get car-doored, which is true. Or you could find the specs for how wide a lane has to be and if the lane isn't up to code it's not safe.

    Me, I'd just block traffic if the speed limit was 25, but I'd go 25.

    Consider a rearview mirror; you can hear cars coming when you're pedalling but not when your motor is on.
  10. kenster

    kenster Member

    I havn't considered electric but will look into it. I do like that they are quiet.
  11. kenster

    kenster Member

    This is a reall busy area especialy on weekends. You don't need a rear view mirror, you are always surrounded by cars. Also 25 would be the highest speed they could go since these are short city blocks. As long as the bike can get to that speed quickly I think you could avoid alot of problems. Once your stake out that road they will (I'm hoping)treat you like every other motorist.
  12. augidog

    augidog Banned

    if you don't treat yourself like a motorist...i.e. helmet, mirror, lights, hand-signals, rules-of-traffic...then you don't have any bidness out there, anyway, imo. even the most gracious cager in the world can make a mistake or misread yer intentions. if this is just a game or a way to stick it to the system, you're gonna get lazy in traffic...keep in mind everyone else has to be watching out for you, and you should be doing everything you can to do your part....we have to show ourselves responsible, otherwise we'll eventually be grouped in with the pocketbikes and other "toys" and we'll be legislated off the road, too.

    having sed that...i can vouch for a tanaka 32 with a 13tooth gear as a great vehicle for safely sharing road-rights at moderate speeds.
    Last edited: May 11, 2008
  13. kerf

    kerf Guest

    Augi's right on point but I never assume that anyone is watching out for me. I keep my head on a swivel and one eye in the mirror.
  14. augidog

    augidog Banned

    yup, i should have been more clear...i meant many things, like...

    some cagers resent having to babysit bad riders, they have to do it tho because the bad-rider would sue, get it? guess who they take that out on? me. and other real riders.

    i also meant that we are supposed to be making it as easy as possible to avoid killing us on our dinky vehicles. right or wrong, dead is dead.

    not an easy juggling act...being a good ambassador and dodging a bad-rider's bullets...

    when you screw up, you screw us.
  15. kenster

    kenster Member

    Well, I hope I didn't give the impression I'd be a bad ambassader to motorbiking. Rember I'm fifty and survival and good conduct are high on my priority list. A mirror and brake light would be ideal, I was just trying to give folks a picture of how busy streets are here near the beach in the summer. I actually think I could figure some kind of brake light. The DOT helmet is a little harder because I want to go motorless on the beach bike path. A full motorcycle helmet would be too hot for working out. Also, even when motored I plan on cruising about 20 unless I need to go faster for safety reasons. Thanks for all the comments, this has been a great help.
  16. kerf

    kerf Guest

    Brake light is good but I run a bright red flashing tail light, it screams "please don't hurt me!".
  17. augidog

    augidog Banned

    no, ken, you didn't give me that impression directly...also being 50 and of practical mind and attitude, and having a history of being outspoken when it comes to the welfare of the movement, i had to take advantage of the topic's tangent to get my "public service" message in there...if there's anything i can help with re: your decisions, have yer people PM my people :cool:
  18. loquin

    loquin Active Member

    The cops also say that you should "Drive like you belong there" on the bike. I posted a document I found last week in the laws/legislation forum that is a sort of law officer handbook in regards to bicyclers.
  19. loquin

    loquin Active Member

    Also, if you're looking to punch it to get up to speed, then the staton may be a better fit - the chain will probably hold up to jackrabbit starts better than the gebe belt.
  20. Moondog175

    Moondog175 Guest

    I have kept my bike inside and have no problems with the smell of gas, just make sure you don't spill the gas on your bike when refueling.

    Trust me a blinking red light on the back makes a big difference when it comes to drivers. I get way more respect from people with my light flashing on the rear . Make sure you use your hand signals for turning and slowing down, that is also very important unless you have turn signals. I travel on roads with Mac trucks all over the place going 40 to 45 mph and the semi-trucks can give me a scare at times but 90% of the time they are very respectful when I use my hand signals with proper notice.

    I have a lot of hills here in ohio where I live and so Im running 35 to 40 mph most of the time going down hill. I also do some city driving and I still would suggest a rear view mirror. If you have to change lanes it is way safer than looking over your shoulder. You should also get a horn, I know mine has saved me many times while going through the mall parking lot or in traffic, and I don't know about where your located but its law here in ohio that you have one.

    If you have helmet laws there then where a helmet , if you don't then that is your personal preference. Personally I don't care for helmet laws or seat belt laws , but then again I have lost 2 friends due to the fact they were wearing a seat belt. They died because that law took their right to choose away. They may have been a small percentage but thats how it happened.

    The main thing is if you treat others with respect on the road they will return the favor.

    As for going with registering your bike as a moped , I personally would hold off on that. If your going 20 to 25 mph your not going to have any trouble, 20mph is legal and if your going down a hill enjoy the speed.

    Your question about going with the flow of traffic is a double edge sword, because cars see you as a bicycle and they will sometimes speed up and pull over to pass you and then they notice that your going their speed and they end up doing stupid things like passing you in stupid dangerous spots. I keep a eye on my rear view and if I notice this going on I'll slow down and pull over to let them by.
    As for GEBE ,the belt drive is great and as was already stated you can remove it quickly (1 min tops) .

    This site/forum is a gold mine of great people full of wisdom and tips, the search feature works great and you can always find a top notch answer to any questions you have.
    I wish you the best with your GEBE kit. I love mine and it saves me a ton of money and brings me lots of good times, not to mention a pround sense of freedom and that is getting harder to find.
    Best of luck, Moondog175 in Ohio
    Last edited by a moderator: May 12, 2008