Are E-bikes appropriate for....

heavens no never
3
6%
communting
39
83%
road group rides
5
11%
rail trails and fire breaks
18
38%
single track
3
6%
national parks
2
4%
you can run over my grandma on one if you like
12
26%
 
Total voters : 47

Talkback Tuesday: Are E-bikes Awesome Or Spawn Of Satan?

Postby Scotty on Tue 26/May/15 7:41pm

In the IT world a hot topic at the moment is whether artificial intelligence will soon become sentient and then proceed to nuke us all into oblivion like a bad terminator movie. We stand on the precipice that is a bit of a double-edged sword: on one hand we have something that unbelievably awesome they can make a day-to-day live so incredibly easy, on the other hand we have something that will kill us all in the blink of an eye without even thinking.

Image


And so it is with e-bikes: on one hand we have a brilliant contraption capable of introducing multitudes of people to a sport many have previously found too hard, too sweaty, too downright dirty altogether to participate in. On the other hand we have a bunch of what is in essence lightweight motorcycles ripping up the trails left, right and centre, ridden by people who quite frankly have no business being anywhere near a mountain bike trail.

Image


Or do they?

Cyclists pride themselves on being friendly and approachable (except eurocentric roadies, those guys are fuckers!) and we often wank on about how great our sport is to the uninitiated. Think back to the last time you gave your evangelistic best to get someone to give it a go and remember their trepidation at the thought of hills. BIG. STEEP. SCARY. HILLS.

It seems to be the number one turn-off. Now if you could offer them a magic pill in the form of an electric motor to help them up the hills, how many of them would say yes?

My guess is, a hell of a lot more.

The appeal of the great outdoors experience without having to work hard for it is a license to print money. It's why people are willing to spend millions on gondolas and feasibility studies on stupid road tunnels in pristine parts of the world. We want the outdoor experience NOW, and we want it EASY.

Which is what the ebike offers. You and your unfit redneck drinking buddy, your asthmatic auntie, your elderly and infirm ex-moto riding grandpa can get to the top of some big steep hills and drink in the views and the blue and green of the awesome outdoors.

With any luck these people will go home to their friends and whanau and tell them about their outstanding experience, those people will get on a bike themselves and soon the tracks will be humming with new people on their new bikes.

Yet many of us treat the e-bike with suspicion. What is it about the e-bike that makes so many of us uneasy?

Your thoughts callers.
Scotty
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Re: Talkback Tuesday: Are E-bikes Awesome Or Spawn Of Satan?

Postby Dougal on Tue 26/May/15 7:54pm

How long before the first fatality? Because someone with a few health conditions found themselves a long way from anywhere. On a bike which is very heavy and suddenly refuses to help them pedal!
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phunk
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Re: Talkback Tuesday: Are E-bikes Awesome Or Spawn Of Satan?

Postby mfw on Tue 26/May/15 8:10pm

They look like fun to me, and I look forward to one when I get old(er) with dodgy knees etc :D

However, if and when I see them on the trail I will no doubt curse them for:
- cheating :angry:
- riding outside their ability :angry:
- spoiling the peace :angry:
- causing more trail damage :angry:

Idiots exist in all forms of life, some will buy and abuse these, and cause more friction around our precious shared resources. :hmmm:

And they will, er, create more vorb threads. :rolleyes:
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Re: Talkback Tuesday: Are E-bikes Awesome Or Spawn Of Satan?

Postby pushbikerider on Tue 26/May/15 8:47pm

As far as I see it, in the context of mountain biking. If you want to ride a bike with a motor, buy and ride a motorbike. I have no desire to share trails with pedal assist bikes, let alone throttle controlled ones.

In the context of urban cycling, commuting, I am happy to see pedal assistance bikes helping people get out and about. I don't think that throttle operated bikes should be considered bicycles, they should be treated the same way as a motor scooter, needing a licence and registration
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Re: Talkback Tuesday: Are E-bikes Awesome Or Spawn Of Satan?

Postby Orphan on Tue 26/May/15 9:15pm

Spawn. Of. Satan!

Hate busting my guts up a hill and one of the e-Spawn pass me all tra la la

Makes me get my game face on though!
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Re: Talkback Tuesday: Are E-bikes Awesome Or Spawn Of Satan?

Postby dwgknz on Tue 26/May/15 10:17pm

I'd have to say I'm ambivalent too them really. Never seen one on a trail but know a few heart attack aged oldies that ride the bike trails around Napier on them. Unless they suddenly take off with younger riders can't expect to ever see them on single track and if I see an oldie out in wops on a 4x4 track good for them I say.
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Re: Talkback Tuesday: Are E-bikes Awesome Or Spawn Of Satan?

Postby philstar on Tue 26/May/15 10:19pm

pushbikerider wrote:As far as I see it, in the context of mountain biking. If you want to ride a bike with a motor, buy and ride a motorbike. I have no desire to share trails with pedal assist bikes, let alone throttle controlled ones.

In the context of urban cycling, commuting, I am happy to see pedal assistance bikes helping people get out and about. I don't think that throttle operated bikes should be considered bicycles, they should be treated the same way as a motor scooter, needing a licence and registration



:withstupid:

they are great motivation commuting, have not let one beat me yet :)
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Re: Talkback Tuesday: Are E-bikes Awesome Or Spawn Of Satan?

Postby kneemick on Tue 26/May/15 10:21pm

Gotta earn the downhills and idiots on these things will damage trails more than those of us that pedal and get into situations way beyond their ability too easily.
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Re: Talkback Tuesday: Are E-bikes Awesome Or Spawn Of Satan?

Postby swtchbckr on Tue 26/May/15 10:28pm

there's already plenty of people riding the trails, often times too damned many, so if these things get MORE people out there, then that's a lose lose situation for us all. I think it's cheating, but i'm sure in 20 or 30 years time when my knees are gone, i'll be fucking riding one myself... - haha, but then, i'd have earned it, right? having ridden self powered all my adult years, and then some.
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Re: Talkback Tuesday: Are E-bikes Awesome Or Spawn Of Satan?

Postby philstar on Tue 26/May/15 11:41pm

Scotty wrote:And so it is with e-bikes: on one hand we have a brilliant contraption capable of introducing multitudes of people to a sport


is it really the same sport on an e-bike?
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Re: Talkback Tuesday: Are E-bikes Awesome Or Spawn Of Satan?

Postby Velocipedestrian on Wed 27/May/15 2:27am

philstar wrote:
pushbikerider wrote:As far as I see it, in the context of mountain biking. If you want to ride a bike with a motor, buy and ride a motorbike. I have no desire to share trails with pedal assist bikes, let alone throttle controlled ones.

In the context of urban cycling, commuting, I am happy to see pedal assistance bikes helping people get out and about. I don't think that throttle operated bikes should be considered bicycles, they should be treated the same way as a motor scooter, needing a licence and registration



:withstupid:

they are great motivation commuting, have not let one beat me yet :)

Too right.

I get a laugh out of seeing the commuter units in town, and many of their riders would otherwise be in cars.

But I've yet to see one on a trail, and feel very dark on the idea. Throttle or pedal assist, a motorised bike designed for off-road use should not be welcome in reserves, the same way a motorbike is not.
I feel in a designated bike park, the governing body should be able to allow or deny access if they choose to deal with the increased track wear and user conflict.
But I can see pedal powered users getting grumpy about the uphill passing shenanigans etc.
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Re: Talkback Tuesday: Are E-bikes Awesome Or Spawn Of Satan?

Postby Scotty on Wed 27/May/15 5:53am

philstar wrote:
Scotty wrote:And so it is with e-bikes: on one hand we have a brilliant contraption capable of introducing multitudes of people to a sport


is it really the same sport on an e-bike?

Two wheel and predominantly pedal-powered with a bit of assist. Looks like it to me.

The motors must be getting good if they're checking TDF bikes for it these days. :lol:
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Re: Talkback Tuesday: Are E-bikes Awesome Or Spawn Of Satan?

Postby Scotty on Wed 27/May/15 5:54am

Actually, let me follow that up.

The main concern seems to be that it makes things easier, but so do gears, do we all revert to singlespeeds like the puritans we appear to be?
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Re: Talkback Tuesday: Are E-bikes Awesome Or Spawn Of Satan?

Postby Scotty on Wed 27/May/15 5:56am

swtchbckr wrote:there's already plenty of people riding the trails, often times too damned many, so if these things get MORE people out there, then that's a lose lose situation for us all.

This is where we disagree. Nine times out of ten more riders means more weight at council level for tracks.

swtchbckr wrote:I think it's cheating, but i'm sure in 20 or 30 years time when my knees are gone, i'll be fucking riding one myself... - haha, but then, i'd have earned it, right? having ridden self powered all my adult years, and then some.

:lol:

Check your entitlement. :hmmm:
Scotty
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