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Thinking of getting ebike...

  • 22-03-2023 3:10pm
    Registered Users Posts: 1,110 ✭✭✭

    Looking to get an ebike for around €1,500, I was looking online but what concerns me with this is if something were to go wrong with it, id have no comeback, I have some cycle shops in my area that say they do repairs but I've yet to find out if they fix ebikes, for instance I was looking at this one:

    The bike is for commuting, not exercise, so I'm trying to go for one that will offer maximum assistance, can anyone recommend anything or advise me on anything?



  • Moderators, Category Moderators, Arts Moderators, Sports Moderators Posts: 49,191 CMod ✭✭✭✭magicbastarder

    the bike in question is legally an MPV - the gardai are not paying attention to this, possibly due to expected legislation which will clarify some matters, but just beware that if they ever did start policing that, you'd legally be riding a moped and not e-bike.

    anyway - how long is your commute? if you did want something 'legal', they all pretty much meet the max allowed specs, which is a 250W motor, assistance up to 25km/h, and only assist while pedalling. my wife's bike on turbo mode will provide (i think) more than triple the power of the cyclist, so basically sails along with little effort. the average person might be able to put out 75w, which means that combined with 225W from the bike, you'd be putting out 300W which will feel absolutely plenty anyway.

    the bike above has fat knobbly tires; unless you're commuting over rough ground, you will not need those. and they sound like a swarm of angry bees. go for a bike with traditional size wheels for easier maintenance and availability of parts.

    what brands do your local shops stock?

  • Registered Users Posts: 1,150 ✭✭✭Joe1919

    The Kugoo bike above is very heavy at 38Kg and looks like a small motorbike, so I would be afraid that it might draw attention as to its legal position.

  • Moderators, Technology & Internet Moderators, Regional South East Moderators Posts: 28,476 Mod ✭✭✭✭Cabaal

    When legislation does eventually come in expect to have to have pay insurance, wear a helmet etc on that thing, as already noted its an e-moped. So you need to factor all those costs into owning it.

    Even at present that type of ebike would get more attention due to have it looks so higher chance of Gardai stopping you right now especially given this type of ebike is illegal due to max speed etc. The comment on the weight is valid, I cycle a bike weighing in at 43kg (its a cargobike) and there are plenty of times when you feel that extra weight both when cycling and just rolling about/parking it.

    Unless you want to pay out insurance in the long run i'd be focusing on a decent e-assist bike which gets good range in turbo mode.

  • Registered Users Posts: 1,735 ✭✭✭Large bottle small glass

    I think you should look at overall long-term cost of your purchase and also value for money rather than cheap.

    Whatever bike you look at see if you can get spares for it before you buy it; I'm thinking battery, motor, wheels, bearings for hub etc.

    Maybe look up specific ebike shops here or at least by a major recognised brand.

    This forum doesn't have a lot of ebike traffic, maybe try Facebook groups or larger UK forums?

    Hopefully some regular ebike user here could recommend a bike for you.

    Also if it's for commuting you need full mudguards including flaps (for you and bike) and decent lights.

  • Moderators, Category Moderators, Arts Moderators, Sports Moderators Posts: 49,191 CMod ✭✭✭✭magicbastarder

    i hadn't seen that - my wife's bike (a cube touring 400) is a bit of a beast, and it has a stated weight of 24KG; the one above is over 50% heavier.

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  • Registered Users Posts: 6,231 ✭✭✭DaveyDave

    One of the issues with bikes like that is people see it and think comfort. Cycling isn't comfortable like sitting in a car. You're going to feel bumps and potholes, larger tyres will reduce that feeling but not get rid of it. Big tyres slow you down, reduce battery life, are harder to shop for and have less grip on a road surface and those cheap suspension components only weigh the bike down and are very likely to break over time. You also need to get air suspension serviced and that's a no name part that shops probably won't touch. If you have an ebike there's a risk of running out of battery, my ebike is only 15kg and on normal road bike wheels and tyres even then running out of battery sucked.

    Have a look at Decathlon or Halfords for ebikes in the €1,500 budget. If something goes wrong with the motor in those bikes you'll have warranty with a shop plus you'll have a normal bike with normal parts that a bike shop can look after for you if anything needs repairs or upgrades.

  • Registered Users Posts: 480 ✭✭getoutadodge

    good advice. keep it simple

    fat tyres, shocks, even disk brakes all add complexity and ultimately cost and maintenance. mudguards and bulletproof tyres are way more important that fancy gadgetry... when commuting. more weight means less range. get a sturdy push bike and put a kit on it

    most bicycle shops won't touch e bikes when it comes to maintenance...even just fixing a simple puncture. i have three in my area that specialise in e bikes no issue when needed. they're very busy precisely because traditional bike shops generally refuse e bike clients who are growing in number especially among older people interested in returning to cycling

    but go for it. e bikes really changed my daily routine for the better

  • Registered Users Posts: 1,110 ✭✭✭Sandor Clegane

    Hey all, thanks for the feedback, I've gone from the bike in question and I'm going for a more conventional one, I was down at a bike shop who were offering a da vincy for €1, 500...but I went to a local cycle shop who recommended a ridgeback arcus 1 which as €2,100, I wouldn't mind coming up to that price if it was a better bike, my commute isn't long it's 1.3km away from where I live, but there is a bit of a steep hill on the way home, any opinions on which would be better suited to me?

  • Registered Users Posts: 1,924 ✭✭✭Andrea B.

    I understand these €2k prices for non ebikes and the technology that delivers comfort and efficiency.

    Ebikes? Battery and motor for the most part, with good quality everything else.

    Under €1k should see you good (maybe not bricks and mortar).

    Park your €1k saving in a Revolut vault to act as "warranty" money.

    Added value in that a theft of a €1k bike will also be less pain.

    Bought an engwe ep2 pro (folding fat tyre) recently from pogo for €1k.

    The battery and drive alone would have cost me €700. I had been considering conversion of a hybrid.

    Can't get over the quality of the build. Have picked up some inner tubes off Amazon, as backup.

  • Registered Users Posts: 6,231 ✭✭✭DaveyDave

    Personally if I was getting into the €2,000 bracket I would want to see more well known brands with motors from Shimano, Bosch, ebikemotion etc. I'm not familiar with that Sportdrive motor, those Alhonga brakes are apparently super budget tier too.

    Probably fine for a short commute but for €1,950 you'd get an Orbea Optima with the well known ebikemotion motor and built in mudguards as a comparison.

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  • Registered Users Posts: 2,284 ✭✭✭Ferris

    This is on chainreaction. No knowledge on Brose motors, they used to be sh1t but I think they might be good now (I think the specialised ebikes are rebadged Brose) so maybe do some research. Seems to have a lot of power at 90NM and has a 500wh battery. Commuter ebikes are best with mudguards / rack / integrated lights IMO. I think crank drive bikes with torque sensing are better to ride than hub drive with cadence sensing and they get better range too. My advice is that battery capacity is the first consideration on any ebike - then spec and price come next.

    Ridley RES U800 Deore Mens Urban E-Bike 2022 | Chain Reaction (

  • Registered Users Posts: 480 ✭✭getoutadodge

    "My advice is that battery capacity is the first consideration on any ebike - then spec and price come next."

    Agree. My current set up has a 70 km range. Taking no chances! I ran out in the early days and it was like cycling thru treacle. Learnt my lesson and upped the battery specs. Second is bulletproof tyres (e.g. Schwalbe) along with a puncture cannister which will get you home in an emergency. Taxis will NOT take u. After that comes saddle and handle bar posture then lights... especially for winter...and last but not least...a very good u lock

  • Moderators, Category Moderators, Arts Moderators, Sports Moderators Posts: 49,191 CMod ✭✭✭✭magicbastarder

    the OP has stated that the commute is a 1.3km one, so if that's the intended use of the bike, range anxiety won't be an issue.

  • Registered Users Posts: 36,167 ✭✭✭✭ED E

    Why would yo bother like? Lets say the OP is really really slow at 15km/hr. Just over 5mins. Lets make it 7 mins with the hill. €700 for a utility bike, safe the rest for a holiday or something.

  • Registered Users Posts: 21,634 ✭✭✭✭Squidgy Black

    Could end up using it for shorter trips to the shops etc, can definitely feel like less of a ‘hassle’ to hop on an ebike compared to a regular bike when you aren’t a regular cyclist.

  • Registered Users Posts: 508 ✭✭✭Daisy 55

    I have a rad runner for work and bit of jobs, shopping etc. came in a box from Holland.

    Love it! Not a cyclist really but getting great use out of it.

    Easy to maintain yourself. The website has lots of videos. The local bike shop wasn’t keen on repairs, but I think I made a mistake in not looking for a repair shop. The only thing I’ve needed were new brake pads, but now I do them myself.

    would definitely recommend!

  • Registered Users Posts: 18,539 ✭✭✭✭_Brian

    Rather than start another thread I'll pop this question here...

    Myself and herself are thinking of moving up to e-bikes, locally hills are killer when getting out and longer range is attractive..

    Looking at the Veloci brand, specifically the, bonus it comes on a small enough frame suitable for herself and full size for me.. 13Ah battery and 80nm torque..

    Anyone familiar with these bikes or any other input on sub €1500 e-bikes..

  • Moderators, Category Moderators, Arts Moderators, Sports Moderators Posts: 49,191 CMod ✭✭✭✭magicbastarder

    I think that's the one that was permanently 'reduced' as an Irish independent offer - to the 1.5k listed. So pay no heed to the 'discount'.

  • Registered Users Posts: 2,284 ✭✭✭Ferris

    That’s pretty good spec for the price. Bafang mid drives are supposed to be good and on a par with Bosch/shimano etc. A mid drive will feel very natural to cycle and the bikes look comfortable. 13ah battery is ok, would prefer more capacity but mid drives generally get good range as you so more work. Look like solid commuting bikes.

  • Registered Users Posts: 18,539 ✭✭✭✭_Brian

    They won’t be commuting bikes as it’s not possible for us. I’m recovering from a back injury and can’t see me managing without help for a good while.

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  • Registered Users Posts: 2,284 ✭✭✭Ferris

    This is the beauty of ebikes. An injury such as yours can be accommodated and you retain access to a bike with all the associated benefits.

    That motor is whats called a torque sensing motor. Essentially it takes your effort (torque) and matches it or in most cases multiplies it. In simple terms it means you have to push/pedal but the input can be really gentle. There is another type of motor which uses a cadence sensor which only requires you to move the pedals for the motor to engage so it requires practically no effort - this may be of interest to you depending on your injury. I like torque sensing as I get a bit of exercise and the bike is very smooth and natural to ride. I find cadence sensing a bit jerky but some newer bikes have this all ironed out. So you should probably try before you buy, the wrong bike is never cheap.

    To me the bike seems to be really good spec for the money, a cut above some of the trash ebikes that are out there.

  • Moderators, Category Moderators, Arts Moderators, Sports Moderators Posts: 49,191 CMod ✭✭✭✭magicbastarder

    after sales support and servicing would be one of the common warnings people would give here - check to see what is on offer, and whether local bike shops in your area can support you.

  • Registered Users Posts: 18,539 ✭✭✭✭_Brian

    One question i had, this is mid mounted motor with 80nm torque, i see many rear hub motors but usually 40-50nm torque, is there less requirment if its a rear hub motor or are they just literally lower spec, I'm not slim but not mad heavy either 88kg @181cm

  • Registered Users Posts: 18,539 ✭✭✭✭_Brian

    Local shops are €1k dearer for similar spec bike, anything in this price in B&M shops seems very low end indeed.. Veloci are offering a 3year electrical, 7 year on mechanical parts and lifetime frame waranty.. That seems at the top end of waranty too

  • Registered Users Posts: 18,539 ✭✭✭✭_Brian

    Truth is 27 years ago I was diagnosed with severe degenerative disc disease, between that and a bad RTA in 2009 I've done well to get this far, I'm just back on my feet after being down for 3 weeks in the most recent episode... We've always enjoyed being out on the bikes and i'm not on for giving up on that.. the e-bike hould keep me going with less stress

  • Registered Users Posts: 2,284 ✭✭✭Ferris

    So 360cycles in Clontarf sell bikes (Kuma) with similar Bafang mid-motors. Bikes will feel much the same I expect if you ask for a test ride. Specifically I would like to see what it was like to push one over the 25kph cutoff to see what resistance is present. One suspects 360cycles could service / repair. In reality these motors and batteries are usually straight replacement items, any decent bikeshop should be able to repair. I suspect the 'we don't fix ebikes' mantra comes from requests to fix dodgy cheap ebikes with no parts support - thats not what you have here - Bafang are the largest ebike system manufacturer in the world.

    On the torque issue, 80NM would probably surprise you at how powerful it is, mine is 75NM (Bosch) and its loads of power. At full power you can hit the 25kph limit before you are through a typical road junction. Torque figures hub vs mid motor has little comparison as the mid motors nominal torque value can be multiplied many times over by the bikes gearing. Weight of bike and rider are not much of a consideration with ebikes apart from lifting the actual bike onto a bike rack etc. 25kg is pretty much par for the course. Check the spec of the brakes, they look like mechanical rim brakes which seems at odds with the spec for the rest of the bike, maybe ask the exact spec. Possibly not an issue for your intended use.

  • Registered Users Posts: 18,539 ✭✭✭✭_Brian

    Yes I have hydraulic disc brakes on my current hybrid bike, they are obviously superior to rim brakes. But I think for leisure cycling few times a week it will be fine

    I suppose it may be a compromise so I can get an e-bike on my budget. I was happier with the longer warranty and 13Ah battery for range than many I looked at.

  • Registered Users Posts: 4,617 ✭✭✭MojoMaker

    Those mythical "trips to the shops" never happen though do they? Good for the man-maths of course!

  • Registered Users Posts: 13,337 ✭✭✭✭fits

    I’m going to jump in here too.

    live in a hilly area and have two kids. One is flying around on his frog bike - the other has issues with balance and safety awareness so I’m thinking of getting an e-bike that could tow him in a trailer. He’s six.

    went to bike shop today and they recommended a cube supreme hybrid. it seems like a lot of bike could I get away with less?

    will mainly be for family spins and 1 km hilly trips to shops or school.

    I had road bikes in past and cycled a lot pre kids. still do for commute from train to office in Dublin but wont be using this bike for that.

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  • Registered Users Posts: 1,767 ✭✭✭eljono

    Hi OP, I bought a Claud Butler Haste-e bike last year, and am very happy with it. Our local town has some hilly parts to it and the electric assistance really helps, I use it a lot more than I did my regular bike.

    I mostly use it to take my son to creche on a rear mounted carrier, again, the e-assistance is great at disguising the extra weight on the bike.

    I'd definitely recommend one and I'm very happy with the Claud Butler. It's quick, comfortable and battery life is excellent so far.