Need info on electric bike range

Discussion in 'Electric Bicycles' started by JunkyardDog, Nov 26, 2010.

  1. JunkyardDog

    JunkyardDog Active Member

    Ok, I just completed my gas powered bike project, using an older modified steel framed Trek mountain bike, BMP kit, and Robin/Subaru engine. So far I am pretty happy with it.

    Now I need another motored bike, this one will have to be electric, as it will be used on park bike paths. It can be a ready made bike or a kit, but there are several requirements. It will need a SOLID 10 mile range, on level ground, at 10 mph, with a 220 pound rider, WITHOUT any pedaling. It will need to be reliable enough to be ridden 10 miles per day/5 days a week for quite some time before the batteries or motor fail. And, it will need to be something that won't break the bank. I know there are $3000 bikes out there that meet these requirements, but that is way more than I can afford. It is obvious that most of the claims made by the makers of electric bike and electric conversion kits are gross exaggerations, so I am looking for information from people who have actually had experience with these bikes. Basically, what is the least expensive bike out there that will meet these requirements? I would prefer a hub motor, as I am not a fan of the Currie drive system, but will consider anything. Thanks, Jerry.

  2. wheelbender6

    wheelbender6 Well-Known Member

    I think you can do it for around $600 with SLA batteries.
    The 380watt cyclone kit has two 12v-18AH batteries, but it drives your pedal chain.
    Your basic 500W hub motor kit with three 12v-18AH batteries should also be doable for that price.
    Most complete hub motor kits come with 12v-12AH batteries, and they may not provide the range you need. Buy a kit w/o batteries and get the 12v-18 AH batteries from a separate vendor.
  3. Ypedal

    Ypedal Member

    10 miles of fairly flat terrain, totally doable.. in the states, SLA sucks and is way heavy, a 10ah lithium pack will deliver 10 miles no problem and be shallow enough discharge cycle to last a few years easily enough.

    If you can find a good deal on an A2B Metro, usually in the 1000 to 2000 range.. the on board battery will do 10 miles no problem ( 20 miles if you discharge fully ) .. weatherized and reliable. I have one and love it.
  4. lfairban

    lfairban New Member

    List of options

    I'd go with the Ampedbikes Direct Hub Motor for about $350. Your range isn't very demanding, and your speed requirement is more than modest.

    I'd say 3 12Ah 12V SLAs should work, but they might not last a year. On the other hand, they are so cheap and easy to replace, you might not mind. You can find them online for about $100. Ampedbikes has a SLA kit for $200 including a special rack bag.

    If you can afford another $500, definitely consider the Lithium tube battery. More range, even though it is a 10 Ah, you should get close to twice the range.

    There are many other kits available. I have compiled a list:

    Good Luck
  5. Neon

    Neon Member

    The Currie Electro drive believe it or not will do everything you asked for and will not be that expensive. The last price i saw on them was $499 US. Hunting around you may find them cheaper. My last currie went 20 miles per day but i had 2 SLA battery packs. The motor lasted about a year and a half before i took out the bearings. But i replaced them and it is still working. The motors are 450 watt. Also the terrain was not exactly flat that i was using it on.
  6. JunkyardDog

    JunkyardDog Active Member

    Thanks for the information. I decided to go with the front hub drive kit from, with 2 SLA batteries, and it does get me 10 miles. I went with the front hub, because I have a $400 custom built rear wheel to support my weight (and now the weight of the batteries) and needed to keep it. I also had a better much stronger rack (the old mounting kit from my dead Island Hopper rear friction drive setup, looks just like the BMP kit, makes an excellent heavy duty rack with the motor and roller removed.

    I decided against lithium batteries, because of the cost, the fact that I did not need them, and because I have heard they are VERY easily damaged from over and under charging. At least I am familiar with SLA batteries.

    I have a couple of hundred miles on this setup, and so far so good. I realize the batteries will eventually wear out, but I am hoping everything else (motor and controller) last a long time.