Author Topic: Touring with an E-bike or G-bike?  (Read 6011 times)

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Offline davidbonn

Re: Touring with an E-bike or G-bike?
« Reply #15 on: December 13, 2023, 09:30:10 pm »
I've actually done this (toured with an E-bike).  Including a few trips of approximately two weeks in the Pacific Northwest.  What I'd say about it:

  • You are committed to finding places to charge, and that will limit your route and trip planning.  Sometimes it will limit it a lot.
  • If you have a mid-drive system and two 500wh batteries, you can reasonably expect ranges of 50-60 miles.  But terrain and surface types might change that a lot.  You will get much better range if you commit to the lowest possible levels of pedal assist.
  • You will get much better range and efficiencies with a mid-drive e-bike.
  • Some hotels won't permit an e-bike in your room or allow you to charge on the premises because of the risk of e-bike fires.
  • E-bikes are very heavy.  And often have awkward gearing ranges.
  • Very few e-bikes have ergonomics or comfort down as well as a properly fitted touring bike.
  • Very few e-bikes have good rack options.  And it can be difficult to impossible to fit them with proper racks.

Me:  I've toured quite a bit in a 2017 Riese & Muller Charger GX Rohloff with dual 500wh batteries.  It works but it is a heavy and not very comfortable bike for long distance riding.  The Charger now does grocery hauling duties and I tour on a Co-Motion Siskiyou.




Offline mattdwyerva

Re: Touring with an E-bike or G-bike?
« Reply #16 on: December 18, 2023, 05:06:19 pm »
I'm not a fan of gas cars and motorcycles so gas bikes (aka, mopeds) is definitely not something I would like.  Since you are not looking to pedal at all (sigh), my response below will probably not apply to you, but to add my 2 cents....

My wife rides a Specialized Vado SL ebike which is about 32# with rack and fenders (I weighed it).  Main battery (included in weight) is 320 WH pedal assist and two extender batteries are 160 WH each (1100 g each or 2-1/2# ea).   You can dial in how much assistance the motor provides, so if you only need an additional 60W on average, that would last 10 hours of you have two extender batteries.   If you want an additional 120 W, that would only be 5 hours, etc

So, she still needs to provide leg power to go a long distance.  It works for us, and let's her go the same speed as me with only an additional 80 W or so.  It lets us ride together which is great.

Charging needs to be every night, though, and few campgrounds have outlets on a tent site.   Takes a few hours to charge, so charging at lunch is not very practical, except as a small boost.  So, mostly motels which is a problem if you don't know your schedule, don't have reservations,  and if you stop in a small town.   

I agree that bike trails can be dangerous,  and I'm embarrassed to say that I've had more accidents on bike trails (usually at intersections with roads) than on roads.

We did C&O and Gap trails last fall (out and back sorta) easily.   Cross country is going to be much, much tougher next summer, esp. the Western half of the trip.  The planning is daunting...

Offline ray b

Re: Touring with an E-bike or G-bike?
« Reply #17 on: December 20, 2023, 09:04:33 pm »
G-bike meaning gas powered motorized bicycle as opposed to an e-bike, electric powered motorized bicycle.

I was curious if anyone has ever toured with a 'legal' motorized bicycle. Legal meaning a motorized bike that fits within the generally accepted Class 1, Class 2, Class 3 system. I believe all Classes have to be under 750 watts or 1 hp with Class 1&2 having a 20 mph speed max. Class 3 has a 28 mph max. Class 1&3 are pedal assist (PAS) only while Class 2 can be PAS and/or throttled.


The issue of recharging an e-bike's battery(s) when necessary. Fuel for g-bikes and maintenance for both. Only Class 1 is generally allowed on MUP's and bike-trails thus being able to travel roads and most bike-trails. With only 750w/1hp available how was performance fully loaded? At some point you'll be pedaling. How often, when, etc.? Store-bought e-bikes and g-bikes are significantly heavier than a regular bicycle.

Thanks for the explanation - though confusion arises as G-Bike is an electric bicycle and motorcycle company. https://gbikes.org/

And then there's the problem with semantics - are the steeds that William Harley and Arthur Davidson sitting on in 1914 (attached) "G-bikes?" I see pedals, so I assume they count. 

Semantically, my 135 hp gas- powered bike (short for bicycle) is a gas-powered bicycle. Does that count? Is there a definition of displacement or power that makes a gas-powered bicycle a "G-bike?" Or should we abandon the use of the term G-bike for lack of clarity and simply use descriptors that folks understand - moped, scooter (<50cc), motorcycle, e-bike (with pedals), electric motorcycle, electric scooter, etc.

I try to live as much of my life on two-wheeled contraptions; to me they are all bikes.


« Last Edit: December 20, 2023, 09:08:44 pm by ray b »
“A good man always knows his limitations.”

Offline jinx

Re: Touring with an E-bike or G-bike?
« Reply #18 on: December 21, 2023, 12:08:23 am »
Sorry for the 'g-bike' confusion. I didn't know there was a company called G-Bike.

My state uses the 3 Class system. Class1&3 because they're PAS only are computer controlled electric motorized bicycles. Class 2 using a throttle can be either electric or gas powered but they are confined to the streets and roads. All 3 Classes have a 750 watt or 1 hp maximum power restriction.

To the best of my knowledge, anything outside of the 3 Class system's speed and power restrictions is something other than a 'legal' motorized bicycle.

Offline ray b

Re: Touring with an E-bike or G-bike?
« Reply #19 on: December 21, 2023, 12:28:33 pm »
Sorry for the 'g-bike' confusion. I didn't know there was a company called G-Bike.

My state uses the 3 Class system. Class1&3 because they're PAS only are computer controlled electric motorized bicycles. Class 2 using a throttle can be either electric or gas powered but they are confined to the streets and roads. All 3 Classes have a 750 watt or 1 hp maximum power restriction.

To the best of my knowledge, anything outside of the 3 Class system's speed and power restrictions is something other than a 'legal' motorized bicycle.

Many thanks. Although my son - a strong cyclist, who did the transam in his early 20s - found an e-bike useful in getting groceries to house at the top of a steep hill and steeper driveway in Eugene, I've yet to figure out where one would fit in my life of bicycle commuting and touring with a motorcycle standing by for the heavy and fast long-distance work.

That said, thanks to this thread, working hard to catch up on the lingo and technology for pedal assist system bikes (PAS-bikes?). Reading about PAS sensors, torque sensors, torques sensor with offset and PAS with throttle have helped reveal some of the new technology and stimulate my imagination. It will always be a continuum and mix of technologies. The regulatory agencies are going to have a hard time keeping up.

With motorcycle versions already available, the gas-electric hybrid bikes that make long distance touring possible should be along shortly. Here's one from 2012 that hasn't caught on - perhaps because there's no place to put the panniers. https://science.howstuffworks.com/innovation/inventions/hybrid-sports-bicycle.htm

« Last Edit: December 21, 2023, 12:30:57 pm by ray b »
“A good man always knows his limitations.”