Rethinking the motored bike

Discussion in 'General Questions' started by mrbill, Mar 29, 2009.

  1. mrbill

    mrbill New Member

    Hello All,

    After reading here for about a month I got my donor bike
    and was ready to order my little chinese motor, well I had
    a conversation with the local constabulatory and they said
    NO NO NO. I was told I need ins.,reg.,&plates here in Penna.
    So much for my plans.:bigcry:

    Looks like my last option is to purchase a Whizzer
    as it can be tagged and insured{$83 at progressive}.
    I be pedaling for a bit longer until I can come up with
    a solution to my new budget problem.

    If anyone can suggest other options I might explore
    post away I'm all ears{eyes}. Thanks.


  2. Happy Valley

    Happy Valley Active Member

    Have you considered electric? It might be in the future for all who want power assist sooner or later.
  3. mrbill

    mrbill New Member

    Hello Happy Valley,

    I did consider a hub motor as it's not really noticeable.
    but it's the same legal issues fines, confiscation, and
    points added on to my driving license. Seems my local
    police want tags and insurance on the machine.

    Thankks for the thought.

  4. Happy Valley

    Happy Valley Active Member

    I'm not in PA but I'd be really curious, not to say surprised, to see if electric assist mandated by the DOT under 750W can be outlawed in PA.

    Anybody have the ruling?


    found this:

    Last edited by a moderator: Dec 15, 2015
  5. Mountainman

    Mountainman Active Member

    elect should be good to go -- what kind of state would say no to elect ????

    it would take one (((super uptight pooolice person))) to write you up on an elect MB

    ride the elect motor bike
  6. MurraySabrePlus

    MurraySabrePlus New Member

    It would seem to me that a person on a bicycle, pedalling along, an American institution for decades, never needed any reg/ins/tags, etc, before.
    It was something that was an American pastime, the "freedom" to bike wherever they pleased.

    NOW... think about this:
    What's the average top speed a normal person pedals on a typical bike?
    20mph?..... maybe 25mph? The average probably a bit slower, like 15mph? consider a motor assisted bike.
    How can ANY state/federal laws be imposed in a fair way on a bicycle if it only goes the same avg. speed?
    It doesn't make sense...unless the motor goes OVER a certain limit, like a motorcycle.

    Because then, a toddler on a tricycle or a pre-teen with/without training wheels would have to be registered/insured/tagged..... as well as licenced.
    And that my friends is insanity.

    Screw this governmental ****, I dare anyone to tell me I can't pedal a bicycle without some form of govermental "ok".
    Bicycles were always FREE of hassle, I should be able to PEDAL or use a motor as long as my speed is limited.

    Freedoms are being taken away from citizens and it's time to stand up and show we've had enough of this ****.
    Bike_Builder likes this.
  7. ZnsaneRyder

    ZnsaneRyder Member

    Cool thing with electric, is watts cannot be found out by a policeman. You can say the motor only gets less than 750W, but it's all in the controller and the amount of power you have. Bigger advantage than gasoline for sure. It's one thing to understate the cc's of a gas motor, but with electric, you can have as big of an electric motor as you want, as long as you supposedly have only 750W, it's legal.
  8. ZnsaneRyder

    ZnsaneRyder Member

    Agree 100000%

    We should have the freedom to use our bicycles as we please!
  9. Happy Valley

    Happy Valley Active Member

    While I agree with the sentiment, to be accurate there was a time at the turn of the last century when the safety bicycle had become so popular it became heavily regulated and in some locales it was all but prohibited.

    You can find this history searching online but municipalities around the US had enacted ordinances against bicyclists as seen by a recent article in the news that illustrates the point:

  10. AussieJester

    AussieJester Member

    Fair call too....In Australia we are limited too 200watt power assisted motored bicycles, in a recent NSW court case a sheila on an electric scooter was taken too court the police didnt believe it was 200watt, 3 'experts' were bought in to testify none of them could determine the actual wattage of the motor. The prosecutor did an about face and instead of trying to nail the wiminez for excess power they went after her and won under the ruling that the electric motor WASN'T the secondary power but the primary, the pedals were the assist, poor girl got done and several electric scooter stores closed up over it in N.S.W no longer able to sell the scooters for 'legal' road is sad how far behind our laws are over here in OZ compared to other parts of the world. Governments worldwide jumping up and down to 'save the environment' and soon as an individual makes steps towards this they are knocked down for it :: sigh ::

    I would also be very surprised if mrbill if a Police officer in your state would bust you if you were riding an electric UNLESS of course you were riding dangerously/drunk etc ...if you obey the road rules and pedal like crazy whenever you see a policeman you should be fine IMO the federal law has your back anywayz ;-)

    Best of luck...

    Last edited: Mar 30, 2009
  11. SimpleSimon

    SimpleSimon Active Member

    Bicycles have been regulated for well over a century. The federal code regarding wattage and allowable speed is Commerce Dept regulation aimed at manufacturers and sellers, but does NOT regulate the individual state traffic codes. Those are an entirely state matter, and can be as reestrictive or as permissive as the individual state legislatures care to make them.

    Unfortunately, Pennsylvania CAN restrict the use of any type of vehicle they wish to, and the federal law has nothing to say about it. I live in Louisiana, and state law here requires a license endorsement, turn signals, headlight, tail light, horn, registration, insurance, etc on any power assisted bike. Which is why mine will be a Doctor prescribed "disabled mobility assistive bike", for which none of the registration or the licensing applies. My Doctor is quite cooperative, and has agreed to write his prescription to cover my trike. I'll carry a copy of that prescription on the trike at all times.

    Good luck in Penn, mrbill.
  12. Warner

    Warner Member

    Yep...completely true. Even beyond that, a specific community could have an ordinance against MAB's (or whatever) even if the state law did not prohibit them. Laws flow UP the chain rather than down them....