I went in to get the tape and mud, and while I was doing that, the guy came in and asked, "Does that thing have a motor?". I replied in the affirmative, and he shouted back out to one of the other yard guys that he was right. So I went back out and told them about it. I went back in and paid, and came out to get my box of mud. Then another customer started asking me about it. He'd gotten two electric bikes at Costco that were on closeout, and found them a bit underpowered (similar to my experience trying electric bikes a couple years ago), but as they were on closeout, he got a good deal. I strapped all 48 lbs. of the box on the back, and off I went. It was definitely noticeable having the extra weight on, but more because of balance than slowing me down very much. Once I got to bigger hills, it did slow me down some, but I still made it up the hill to home.
at the Art & Soul Festival, (helpful tip, whether you're working in the electronic world or the physical one: security through obscurity doesn't work; putting your address on your website and printing it on credit card receipts is not obscurity), then headed for home. I rode past the Claremont Hotel, and then up old Tunnel Road. I stopped to look at the exhibit for the 1991 Firestorm, then up the hill from there.
I used to ride that way on a regular basis with my late friend Dave. He and I would hop on our bikes at his house in Rockridge after work, ride up old Tunnel Road, then hang out in the hot tub and drank beer. Cancer claimed Dave in 2006, and the Enron-induced energy crisis claimed the hot tub some years before that. So it was a trip down (or up, in this case) memory lane for me. It's by far the easiest way up the Oakland / Berkeley hills. It's also blessedly (almost) free of cars, so it's a great ride. With the e-bike, it was hecka fun, to say the least.
And because I was just asked about them, here's some more technical specs on the bike:
- 7 gears (Shimano shifter)
- front disc brake
- front shocks
- rear caliper brake
- 250 watt motor, 36V system
- removable lithium ion battery
- charging takes about 3 hours at 90 watts
- 700-1000 charge cycles
I'm not sure how much the bike weighs; as I've noted it's more like a cruiser bike, and the battery definitely adds some weight. But it sounds lighter than the ones the guy got at Costco, and has more power and range to boot. And it's not so heavy it can't be ridden as a regular bike with the motor switched off.
Can you tell I like this bike?