I actually can't see anyone ending up in court with a converted push bike. In town I go at normal speed because motorists will try over take you and run you off the road like they do normal cyclists !!!
On the open road sometimes I open the throttle, but mostly I just go slow and take in the country scenery and fresh air. I don't have it to make a nuisance of myself and to attract attention, however once people cop on to what it is I do get a lot of interest in it and people asking me about it.
You see it's people that live in big towns and especially Dublin that will attract unwelcome attention on these bikes if they start acting the fool and you can get hurt or hurt someone else, If you want to use it as a normal commuter bike to get you that extra distance quicker, without having to work up a sweat in Dublin city to avoid that horrible traffic then I see no better or cheaper alternative mode of travel ! It costs a few cent a charge. If you can charge it up at work ( you will probably have to remove the battery anyway to stop it getting nicked) then you can get away with a smaller cheaper battery.
The Nanny E.U is always watching to see where they can make their mark and impose some new law.
The Irish Government Don't want people getting out of their cars and getting around with very cheap electric bikes, if no one was sitting in traffic at 15-20 mpg wasting thousands of litres per day in petrol or diesel, then the Government would be loosing millions every day in tax! Most people in Dublin I'm sure don't need their cars and could very easily get around on electric bikes. It's different here in the sticks!
Not to mention all the poisonous exhaust gases especially from diesel cars and buses. And the C02 laws promote people to drive diesel more and that's laughable. C02 won't kill you but the more harmful exhaust particles will yet tax on petrol cars is more ! LMFAO Why have diesel cars never been allowed in most U.S cities and states? Because of smog and cancer causing emissions. NOT C02 !
Brilliant information Mad Lad! Now, if I had a grand to mess around with! I really just want one for messing around and going to college maybe, I'm not averse to excercise or anything, but it's a long round trip!
Yeah it is an expensive hobby, however check out cell_mans 's kits on endless sphere, he sells just the motors, but he can build you a good quality wheel too!
Check out the sphere forum and learn a little first and register and ask a few questions, there is lots of info there from people that know a lot more than me!
I would avoid buying off of E-Bay, too many people have bought crap kits there. And what might seem cheap will probably end up costing you a lot more because you will have to replace it with something else and have to pay shipping again, and also your controller might not work with your new motor!
The battery you will have to choose is 3 x 12 volt 10-12 amp = 36 volt lead acid, you will get 100-200 absolute max charge cycles. And they are heavy! You might get 15 miles with peddling. You should get 18-20 mph max.
You also need the correct cables and connectors and you have to ensure the cables can handle the currents, you also need to be able to solder!
Best of luck
Bump to thread!!!
Did anyone end up doing conversions ?
I sold my 2 previous kits and built my 3rd bike.
Now I run on LiPo batteries, these are mainly for Remote control cars, helicopters etc. Ready made packs cost 1500 euros, mine cost 260!
My top speed this time is 40 mph hot off the charger. Acceleration is a hell of a lot better with the new motor!
3500 watts on acceleration, that's about 4.5 hp
The battery is 60 volts 10ah but only using 8.5ah to extend the life of the battery. These batteries however are not for the uneducated in batteries as they have no bms to protect from over charge or discharge, and major fire can result in abuse, LiFeP04 is safe no fire risk, but bigger and heavier and packs ready built fo high power use are very expensive!
At 20 mph I can get 25 miles no pedalling, at 35-40 I get 10-12 miles.
I run on Continental sport contact tyres 26x1.6 pumped to 90 psi, gives me about 1.5-2 miles more range and are a dream to pedal without motor!
The battery weighs 6 kgs and can output 20hp, but I'm only using 4.5 hp, the power output of these batteries is simply amazing, 20 hp from a tiny 10ah battery is just nuts!
Ideally if you are commuting you need A123 LiFeP04 with bms, just plug and play, charging wise! 20ah for high power use for commuting would also be ideal, or if you can charge at work 10ah might do, your boss might not believe it costs only 1cent or so to charge and may not let you charge it!
This bike has given me such a thrill, I never want to get off of it. It is also saving me an absolute fortune in petrol. Two fingers to the Government!
By the way, E.U law dictates certain rules for electric bikes, however it is actually up to each countries legal system to implement the laws!
Again in bigger towns and cities especially Dublin might be a problem, you would be safer on a vectrix scooter, with indicators and brake lights etc, here in the sticks I have no issues with traffic and in the nearest town I go slow and no one knows any different, I keep in and let traffic pass!
Saw one of those moped looking contraptions for sale in a liquidators shop in West Dublin a few weeks back.The lad who worked there said it doesn't need tax/nct/insurance etc because it has pedals.I knew he was talking out of his backside!
Hope nobody fell for his shpeel and forked out the €600 for it.
I remember in the News a few months ago, some man got arrested for drink driving up in the smoke riding one of those and the Judge threw out the case because (legally) it was still a pedal assist, because it has pedals!
You see E.U law is one thing but Irish law has still to catch on, E.U law is meaningless if local countries don't enforce it or have not got their own legislation to deal with these bikes.
I would like to hear from some legal expert on this.
But there are a lot of legal electric bikes that are complete junk using really old tech batteries (laptop style) And any dealer selling bikes with lead acid batteries in the year 2011 should be shot.
Some cheap quality bikes too.
A 250 watt pedal assist junk cheap bike should cost no more than 500 Euro's, any more you are being ripped off, The bikes alone would cost no more than 100 Euros as they are cheap junk, the electrics should cost no more then 300 euro's for a 250 watt D.I.Y legal kit. But always expect to pay up to 1000 Euros for a decent fun d.i.y kit, endless fun at 3500 watts that's for sure. You get what you pay for.
Any electric bike out there must show what battery chemistry they use, if it's simply Li-Ion run, lead acid, run. LiFeP04 is the one to get any other walk away. Much better batteries, but they are a bit expensive atm!
There are different motor types, direct drive and geared, both with advantages and disadvantages, I won't get into that now!
Oh and one very very important SAFETY notice
If converting your old bike for more than 250 watts or any kit that has a front mounted motor you absolutely MUST re-enforce your drop outs where the wheel axle sits into the frame of the bike, if you don't the axle will spin no matter how tight your nuts are and you will have to open the motor and install new wires, if this happens on the road you could get hurt, don't underestimate the power of electrics! You need what's called torque arms or plates that cover the axle to stop it spinning they can be tricky to make and you need someone good at metalwork, and you can't obviously weld!
If you want to go more than 20 mph you must have a bike with hydraulic disk brakes, no exceptions!
You can get a 2nd hand vectrix in Ireland today, there are 2 for sale as we speak (that I know of) for 2500 Euros, but if it's a dealer, don't buy unless you get written guarantee for the battery. Find out what the manufacturers warranty is and get the dealer to back it up! But it would be the perfect cheapest way of getting around legally!
They don't even use lead acid in China any more for feck sake!
120 million electric bikes in china and no law, they tried to bring in legislation but 120 million people can make quiet a fuss! good for them!
It's also an offence to be on a pedal cycle while drunk.
Do you have anything to support your claim of 250w and 450w rule? The Road Traffic Acts don't seem to lay out these limits. The scooter in the op would seem to fall under the definition of the mechanically propelled vehicle.
The information is available on the Internet!
250 watts pedal assist, I believe there are also or soon to be weight limits on electric bikes.
Soon the E.U won't allow us to S**T!
I don't know if you can be prosecuted based on some E.U, law I'm sure if the law is not recognised in Irish law, then they can't possibly convict?
First they have to prove the bike is not within the specifications.
If this was a bike propelled by an engine it might be different ?
I don't recall mentioning 450 watts ?
Hey Mad Lad, thanks for all the great info!
any recommendations on where to get LifeP04 batteries? I've been trying to source on the net but most are based in China and I'm always wary of ordering from there unless it's a site someone has recommended. PM me if you think the mods might not want it on here.
Sending P.M now.
The E.U are considering removing the 250 watt limit on electric bikes, however they won't budge on the 15 mph, even 20 makes a difference.
Making more and more sense to go electric now, either electric bike or car, 1.62 per litre of petrol on the N7. Madness.
Elec bikes are only useful if you live in a town with no hills.
Elec cars are only useful if you have charge points or carry a 20 mile extenson lead in the boot.
Hybrids are an option, but are not competitive, and a bit posery .
Electric bikes are enormous fun and incredibly addictive, but you need 2000 watts at least for fun, 3500 watts through some motors is incredible fun, I'm running 8000 peak through one of mine, I have to be careful or I'll get thrown off.
My Prius does 62 mpg on my daily 80 mile round trip, better than my sisters 1.6 308 hid manual 90 hp. And I paid less for the Prius. Im actually delighted though because the more people have not got a clue about hybrids or electric cars, the cheaper I will be able to get them because everyone automatically think diesel is great but they cost more, are noisy and not efficient it own, the Prius does 53-54 mpg on the open road at 70 mph but it goes up in slower traffic and it's saving me more than my Audi and it's a decent size car, I didn't have to downsize to tiny ecobox slow car. Yeah I had to learn how to drive it properly, but I'm not ever going back to diesel.
I would have an ev in a heartbeat but can't afford one yet, but I will as soon as I can. It's range is good enough for me and I'm not that inpatient or lazy that I can't fast charge if I need to. These things don't bother me, what does is paying the government 70% of my hard earned for every tank of petrol !
I will have the option eventually of charging via wind and solar p.v, especially with the price of solar dropping so fast. 1 euro,per watt or 85 cent per Watt if ordering 5kw for German panels!
All you'll need then is for the sun to shine at night.
Why would you want the sun to shine at night? That would be weird!
You can charge your car during the day or store it in batteries, or just put it into the grid and buy it back at night. The payback is a quarter of the time if you use it for driving because of the cost of petrol and diesel that's the point people are missing.
You are basing your opinions on the price of solar p.v of a few years ago.
If it cost 10 grand for 5kw of solar p.v and I had an e.v to charge then based on our fuel usage of abut 3000 ish euros per year the payback is abut 5-6 years, and less if I generate more than I use.