Mathews Inc.
Which E bike?
Equipment
Contributors to this thread:
Mike-TN 05-Apr-19
Grubby 05-Apr-19
wilbur 05-Apr-19
Twinetickler 05-Apr-19
BullBuster 05-Apr-19
Bigdan 05-Apr-19
CObowhunter 05-Apr-19
Mike-TN 05-Apr-19
Brun 05-Apr-19
CObowhunter 05-Apr-19
daleheth 05-Apr-19
Bigdan 05-Apr-19
Mike-TN 05-Apr-19
sbschindler 05-Apr-19
SB 05-Apr-19
Twinetickler 05-Apr-19
Jaquomo 05-Apr-19
Jaquomo 05-Apr-19
BULELK1 06-Apr-19
BULELK1 06-Apr-19
txhunter58 06-Apr-19
txhunter58 06-Apr-19
Jaquomo 06-Apr-19
Ziek 06-Apr-19
Jaquomo 07-Apr-19
ground hunter 07-Apr-19
Dale Hajas 07-Apr-19
txhunter58 07-Apr-19
Jaquomo 07-Apr-19
elkmo 07-Apr-19
Newhunter1 07-Apr-19
eBike John 08-Apr-19
Jaquomo 08-Apr-19
Adak Caribou 08-Apr-19
Newhunter1 08-Apr-19
cnelk 08-Apr-19
Shiras42 08-Apr-19
Jaquomo 08-Apr-19
Shiras42 08-Apr-19
eBike John 08-Apr-19
Jaquomo 08-Apr-19
eBike John 08-Apr-19
eBike John 08-Apr-19
BULELK1 09-Apr-19
txhunter58 10-Apr-19
Jaquomo 10-Apr-19
txhunter58 10-Apr-19
txhunter58 10-Apr-19
Jaquomo 10-Apr-19
Jaquomo 10-Apr-19
From: Mike-TN
05-Apr-19
Starting to think I “need” one of these. I have looked enough to know there are several companies in the game. Which ones are working well for hunting / farm purposes. My uses would primarily be for my farm.... checking cameras and getting to stands quietly without leaving much scent. I also hunt out west and am guessing there would be opportunity for utilization there as well. Mike

From: Grubby
05-Apr-19
I have a Rambo, it’s the only one I have ridden. I like it but I do have a couple complaints. The rear derailleur is vulnerable and I have broken 2 of them and the bottom bracket is very low so you can and will hit the ground with the pedals in rough spots and when cornering. I was on the fence about buying it but I am really enjoying it.

From: wilbur
05-Apr-19
I have the Rambo as well and yes I also ripped off the rear derailleur. Fortunately John Murphy from eBike Generation (Bowsite sponsor) helped me to get it covered under warranty.

I would recommend you speak with John and he'll help you decide which bike to go with.

From: Twinetickler
05-Apr-19
Check out Biktrix. My Dad and I have the Juggernaut HD's. I have put it to work this spring shed hunting and it is unreal where they will take you. I did literally a year or so of research on them and found Biktrix offers the best complete package for the cost. I would for sure reccomend a mid drive whatever way you go. John carries Biktrix on ebikegeneration.com. I bought mine direct from Biktrix, but John was great to work with and will take care of you. Here is a link of me climbing a steep hill above my house. Lot's of fun!

https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=s75aujgHMeQ

From: BullBuster
05-Apr-19
Buddy of mine had a 750 and sold it after 1 month. Said it didn’t have enough power to get to his elk spots. So he recommends getting a 1000.

From: Bigdan
05-Apr-19
I have a Rad Rover it was only $1499 with free shipping love iti used in in az last fall on my elk hunt and went anywere I wanted to go

From: CObowhunter
05-Apr-19
I wish you lived closer to Colorado I would sell you mine lol! I really like the dang thing but just don't use it enough to justify keeping it. I bought it in December of 2017 and have only taken it out a hand full of times. Where I elk hunt I can't really use it, but where I hunt in Kansas would be awesome I just don't have a good place to store it while I'm back at the hotel. It's a Quiet Kat 1000 and has a ton of power. I bought the single tire trailer for it too.

For what you want it for I would highly recommend one!

From: Mike-TN
05-Apr-19
I will be in CO in September

From: Brun
05-Apr-19
Bigdan, Did you get the R750 model?

From: CObowhunter
05-Apr-19
Awesome! Well if you don't have one by then and I still have mine maybe we can find a way to meet up.

From: daleheth
05-Apr-19
I have the Rambo 750. It is perfect for PA and 750 is PA max to consider it a bicycle and not a motorized vehicle

From: Bigdan
05-Apr-19
Mine is just called a Rad rover

From: Mike-TN
05-Apr-19
Twinetickler..... did you look at the Rad Rover when making your decision?

Mike

From: sbschindler
05-Apr-19

sbschindler's Link
win your e bike here, Montana Bowhunters Association

From: SB
05-Apr-19
So you can"t walk?

From: Twinetickler
05-Apr-19
Yes the Rad is a decent bike, it's a Hub Drive meaning its power is put into the back tire. A mid drive puts the power into the chain drive and has much more torque. I would also reccomend a 1000 watt if you plan to do much climbing. Another key feature is the battery, get the biggest battery that you can. Biktrix offers upgrades and I upgraded to the biggest battery. Rad is a decent bike, but a 750watt hub drive cant hold a candle to a 1000w mid drive in torque and climbing capability imo. Rad is a decent bike at the price point, just dont ride a 1000w mid drive before haha

From: Jaquomo
05-Apr-19
Just be aware that as they become accepted by states and eventually the USFS, 750 watt Class 2 is considered non-motorized and allowed wherever other bikes are allowed. Colorado legalized them a couple years ago. 1000 watt is Class 3 and not allowed. My Rambo 750 will climb anywhere my ATV will go, as did my girlfriend's Rad Rover. Great tools but there is a learning curve..

From: Jaquomo
05-Apr-19
SB, you must do all your hunting on foot from home. Lucky you!

From: BULELK1
06-Apr-19

BULELK1's embedded Photo
I Love my Rad!!
BULELK1's embedded Photo
I Love my Rad!!

From: BULELK1
06-Apr-19

BULELK1's embedded Photo
BULELK1's embedded Photo
BULELK1's embedded Photo
BULELK1's embedded Photo
Like Lou stated, there certainly is a Learning curve for how they ride and the weight distribution.

I got to know mine better by riding around in town with 2 ~~ 5 gallon water jugs in each panniered's as the weight shift takes some time to learn/anticipate.

Then I went on dirt roads and on Legal trails.

Yes, I busted my azzzzzz a few times on the Rocky Trails!

My Rad is rated @ 50lbs each side rail/panniered's and 100lbs on the back rack, easily a boned off meat elk.

I have never riden my Rad with that much wieght on it, I walk along side and use the Throttle Assit for the steeper terrain going Up and the brakes for the steeper coming Down!!

WEAR-a-HELMET!!

Good luck, Robb

From: txhunter58
06-Apr-19
"Colorado legalized them a couple years ago"

Huh?? You want to explain that. Not true as far as I know. If so, please post a reference

From: txhunter58
06-Apr-19
"Colorado legalized them a couple years ago"

Huh?? You want to explain that. Not true as far as I know. If so, please post a reference

From: Jaquomo
06-Apr-19
HB17-1151. Signed into law in 2017. Class 1 and 2 assist bikes are permitted anywhere hikers and conventional bicycles are permitted. They are classified as "non-motorized". Class 3 (1000 watt) are not.

From: Ziek
06-Apr-19
Lou, I think they can still be regulated/not allowed by local ordinance.

From: Jaquomo
07-Apr-19
Correct, Ziek. My understanding is that the locality has to regulate against them if they want them restricted. Larimer county allows them in all the big open space and parks where bikes are permitted. Same with State Parks, State Trusts, SWAs, CO State Forest, etc. unless specified otherwise. So far I haven't found any that are restricted. Some towns (Steamboat, for instance) restrict them to Class 1 on certain bike trails. Pretty sure Vail and Summit County are complying with the law. My Rambo can downgrade to Class 1 by disconnecting the throttle so I can use it where allowed in those Class 1 places.

07-Apr-19
I asked the forest service guy at the Ottawa national forest, in the UP about their use. He told me, there are established mountain bike trails, that are to be used, etc.

However he said, for bowhunting, not to worry about it, there are so few people using the woods, it will be a non issue,,,,,, he even said, there are a lot of areas with berms on the entrance to the road. if its not posted as no motor vehicles, which many are, and you are not bothering anyone, go ahead and use it, to get back to your spots.

I got his info, so at least in my spots, not a big deal. I saw them as low as 1500 last weekend at the trade shows. We have a place in Wisconsin where I can get a lesson, and rent one, for a week of use, if I want,,,,, I think I will do that

I could get back quick to a lot of spots, that would be nice,,,,,, but I am not dealing with a crowded area either, due to big areas, with not that many deer.......

From: Dale Hajas
07-Apr-19

Dale Hajas's Link
I plan on the Kush or the 750R of the M2S line. Hopefully in August..... I too plan on using one after dbl knee replacement. The Pa DCNR also recognizes the 750w rule.

https://shop.m2sbikes.com/collections/all-terrain-electric-bike-series

From: txhunter58
07-Apr-19
HB17-1151: "Gives local governments the authority to allow or prohibit the use of specified classes of electrical assisted bicycles on pedestrian paths and bike paths;"

I want to be sure that people don't get the wrong idea. Sounds like things are good on STATE land for use of Ebikes. But most people who want to hunt with one will be taking them on federal land (BLM or USFS). I am assuming that it is still currently "technically" illegal to take them on (non-motorized) foot and mountain bike trails only on federal lands?

I am not trying to start an argument. I REALLY want to be able to buy one and us it on Federal land I hunt. Just want to be sure that it is finally really, in all cases legal. We are not there yet, right? As I understand it, officials in certain areas might be "looking the other way" but the last time I asked a forest service official where I hunt (USFS) he said he would write me a ticket. Hope that changes in the near future

From: Jaquomo
07-Apr-19
Txhunter you are correct. Legal on all public land EXCEPT federal, unless specified otherwise. On federal land it is similar to "corner crossing". Still technically prohibited on non-motorized trails by TMR restrictions, but as ground hunter and I have learned, some USFS people look the other way and won't cite you while others will. Presumably the pilot programs going on in a couple NFs will lead to at least acceptance of Class 1 assist-only bikes after they learn how benign they really are.

The concern I've heard expressed was about the "speed", but no assist-bike rider I know comes close to riding like the reckless kamikaze MTB maniacs who run hikers and horseback riders off the trails. Misplaced concern by bureaucrats who don't understand.

From: elkmo
07-Apr-19
FS can't keep ATV's on the trails how can they be expected to enforce a 750 watt vs 1000 watt bike. Just slap a 750 watt sticker on your 1000 and go.

From: Newhunter1
07-Apr-19
E-Bike law for ILLINOIS...Not my writing

The new Illinois e-bike law regarding electric assist bicycles was clarified earlier this month when Illinois Governor Bruce Rauner signed a bill outlining their use on roads and paths. The new law, however, leaves the door open for municipalities throughout the state to restrict their use in some places where traditional bicycles are allowed. The law goes into effect on January 1, 2018. Electric Bikes Defined Low speed electric bikes, or “e-bikes”, are bicycles with a low powered motor that assists the rider with pedaling. Their allure is that e-bike riders may travel longer distances, and carry more weight, easier than they would with their traditional cousins opening biking to more people and for a wider range of uses. Their arguable downside is that they allow riders to travel faster than they otherwise might with very little effort, potentially placing themselves and others in danger. Bicycle manufacturers, who see the sale of e-bikes as a growth area, have been working with lawmakers around the country to clarify what an e-bike is and where they may be used. Illinois E-Bike Law The new law defines an e-bike as “a bicycle equipped with fully operable pedals and an electric motor of less than 750 watts,” and which falls into one of three defined classes. A Class 1 e-bike is one “that provides assistance only when the rider is pedaling and that ceases to provide assistance when the bicycle reaches a speed of 20 mph.” A Class 2 e-bike is one that does not necessarily require the rider to pedal to activate the motor. Rather the motor may be used exclusively to power the bike, but ceases when the bike hits 20 mph. A Class 3 e-bike, like a Class 1 bike, provides assistance only when the rider pedals, but ceases once it hits 28 miles per hour. The statute states that, “A ‘low-speed electric bicycle’ is not a moped or a motor driven cycle.” Illinois is the sixth state to adopt an e-bike three-class system, according to Bicycle Retailer. The class into which a particular e-bike falls impacts the equipment sold with the bike and who may ride it. For example, the Illinois statute requires Class 3 e-bikes to be equipped with a speedometer. All e-bikes must be labeled at the point of sale with their classification, top speed and motor wattage. To operate a Class 3 e-bike, the rider must be at least 16 years of age. Importantly, the law is explicit that the same statewide rules that apply to traditional bicycles, also apply to e-bikes. “A person may operate a low-speed electric bicycle upon any highway, street, or roadway authorized for use by bicycles, including, but not limited to, bicycle lanes.” What you can do on a traditional bike, you can do on an e-bike. One of the goals of the new law was to provide clarity and consistency for manufacturers, distributors, and buyers of e-bikes. Currently, the Illinois Vehicle Code provides some guidance regarding e-bikes. Existing law defines e-bikes, consistent with the federal Consumer Product Safety Act, as a bike with operable pedals, a motor of less than 1 horsepower and a maximum speed of less than 20 mph. If the new law offers greater breadth and precision it also provides a trap door for municipalities throughout Illinois to selectively ban their use. A provision of the law permits a person to operate an e-bike “upon any bicycle path unless the municipality, county, or local authority with jurisdiction prohibits” them on that path. (Emphasis added.) The statute does not expressly authorize municipalities to ban street and bike lane use. However, the provision of the law pertaining to path riding could undermine one of the statute’s main goals, to facilitate consistency and eliminate confusion. The State of Colorado recently enacted an e-bike law that similarly allows local municipalities some final say. There, for example, the town of Breckenridge banned e-bikes on a popular bike path to the town of Frisco, according to my Bike Law colleague, Brian Weiss. In Illinois, this flexibility leaves open to question whether, say, Chicago could ban e-bikes on the popular Lakefront Bicycle Path. Moreover, municipalities in Illinois have the power create their own separate rules regarding access to streets and highways under their jurisdiction. Section 11-208 of the Illinois Vehicle Code expressly grants local authorities the right to regulate the “use of highways” and “operation of bicycles.” 625 ILCS 5/11-208. As of now, the Chicago Municipal Ordinance defines a bicycle as a device propelled by human power only. Pretty much everything else is defined as a “vehicle” under the Ordinance. Under Section 9-40-060 of the Chicago Municipal Ordinance vehicles are not permitted to drive, stand or park in on-street bike lanes. This could be a problem for e-bike riders in Chicago and other municipalities that have adopted ordinances similarly inconsistent with the state vehicle code. Next Steps for E-Bikes The growing popularity of e-bikes has the potential to broaden the appeal and use of alternative (non-gasoline using) transportation. They encourage bicycle travel by folks that may not otherwise have the physical ability or predilection to ride a traditional bike. The extra power they provide may also help grow the commercial and industrial use of bicycles, whether it be to haul heavy materials or deliver groceries. Their downside as I see it is when folks buy e-bikes just to go fast. I like riding fast as much as the next person but with speed comes responsibility. When it is too easy to travel 20 mph in an urban bike lane populated by folks on old-fashioned non-motorized bikes there is a greater likelihood for disaster. Also, for the moment, e-bikes are pretty expensive compared to regular bikes, and for a while anyway, will be out of reach for all but the affluent. One of the great things about bikes is that, though not everyone can afford the latest and greatest, virtually all people can afford some type of safe and reliable two wheeled pedal-cycle powered by muscle and sweat. But everything has a downside. If e-bikes mean more seats on saddles, and fewer people behind the wheel, okay then.

From: eBike John
08-Apr-19

eBike John's embedded Photo
Rambo R750XP with and without derailleur
eBike John's embedded Photo
Rambo R750XP with and without derailleur

eBike John's Link
Hi Mike,

I'd be happy to talk to you about what options you have. If you hold off until September I would take up CObowhunter's offer on that Quietkat 1000. you cannot go wrong with that, I sell lots and the power never seizes to amaze everyone. If you have any questions, even if not about the bikes I sell I'd be happy to talk to you and aim in the right direction. One option did come to mind, the Rambo R750XP in the image. The reason I thought of this option is: 1. It's a mid drive Bafang motor so the climbing capabilities are very good. 2. it's a 750 so it's widely considered as non-motorized compared the the 1000 watt. 3. This particular model comes in 2 different drivetrain options. The Carbon painted comes with derailleur and the Camo has the 3 sped hub. the derailleur has a tendency to snap off so the 3 speed internal hub system would avoid that from happening and is easier to maintain.

From: Jaquomo
08-Apr-19
John, how do the 3 speed gear ratios compare to the 7 gear range of my older Rambo?

From: Adak Caribou
08-Apr-19
How do you deal with rain and deep puddles? How about stream crossings? These look like a great toy to have but moisture is always the concern here in Alaska. Thanks in advance.

From: Newhunter1
08-Apr-19
Ebike, i have the QK ambush 750 with the rear hub. How does the rear drive compare to the mid-range drive? I have zero issues climbing hills. Just curious.

From: cnelk
08-Apr-19
If you can afford an eBike, you can afford the small monetary fine IF in fact its against the law, and IF you get caught on NF trails

From: Shiras42
08-Apr-19
I have the Rad Rover and while I love it I have had a couple of issues.

1. I was riding in a rain storm and shorted out the computer. Without that you just have a really heavy fat tire bike. They replaced it no problem. Thought about putting a condom in my pack to cover it up if I get into another rain storm.

2. In muddy terrain the rear derailleur got gummed up and I couldn't get the chain to stay on.

I did do the hack on mine to increase the power output to motor. Love riding it all around town and it is great for getting in shape for a old fat man with a bad back and knee.

From: Jaquomo
08-Apr-19
I know a couple other people who had computers short out in the rain. I carry a couple ziplock sandwich bags in my little seat pouch just for that reason.

From: Shiras42
08-Apr-19
Jaq, You don't always just carry some spare condoms in case you run into one of those Boulder hippy chicks out there?

From: eBike John
08-Apr-19
Lou, The 3 speed internal hub requires virtually no maintenance and since it's all cased inside nothing can break off. And the internal hub can switch speeds from stationary. more of a utilitarian bike than a cyclist's bike. Your Rambo 750 has a better ratio, that's the concession with the 3 speed internal hub. it doesn't have the same range. With the derailleur you can find the exact gear for the job, like finding a nice shoe that comes in half sizes and fits perfectly, the 3 speed hub just has those 3 speeds to work with.

From: Jaquomo
08-Apr-19
Thanks, John. Are the three ratios like a low, mid, and high gear, or are they three mid-range for, as you say, utilitarian townie commuting?

That said, I've ridden some rough stuff and never had an issue with the derailleur (except when it hit the pavement at 70 mph on I-80...). I love the bike, using it now on my turkey hunts, and about to retrofit it with a new front fork with shocks. My only issue is with the low pedal clearance, but I compensate by getting them parallel whenever I need to clear something, then touching the throttle. But there are some single track trails I can't ride because they are rutted a few inches and the pedals won't clear. I asked Rambo about why they are so low and they mentioned something about keeping a low center of gravity, which I get, but a couple more inches wouldn't make that much difference while it would make a big difference in the ridability.

From: eBike John
08-Apr-19
Adak Caribou, The general consensus is wet is fine but submerged is not. I really watched a demonstration if the Bafang Ultra mid drive motor is a perspex box filled with water and it ran continuously. partially submerging the motor should not cause problems.

From: eBike John
08-Apr-19
Hey Lou, I was looking at the 2017 Rambo R750 G3 which I remember is your model and Rambo have it listed as having the same Sturmey Archer 3 speed.

But yes, the 3 spd internal hub was the go to design up until the 1970s, when the derailleur came out the serious cyclists all adopted the derailleur, in Europe the 3 spd hub is still common and considered the model to use for daily getting around but not cycling for sport.

From: BULELK1
09-Apr-19
+1 on carrying a zip lock or 2 for the computer screen for rain/snow protection.

Be sure and take it off in the hot sun though, as it will 'sweat' inside the plastic zip lock and ---- well ya know.....

Good luck, Robb

From: txhunter58
10-Apr-19
“If you can afford an eBike, you can afford the small monetary fine”

I had the forest service try to fine me for having an ATV on a designated trail that they had recently closed. But they had not changed the signs and I had also gotten the green light from forest service people by email, so the ticket/fine was torn up.

That said, the fine was going to be $250 and I would suspect they would have also tried to get points against me with the CPW (hunting). Which would not have been good. Do they have lower fines for Ebikes? And what about potential points against you?

As stated I really want to be able to use one but only if it shakes out to be legal

From: Jaquomo
10-Apr-19
The fine is $225, and according to the USFS Regional Trails Supervisor I spoke with last summer, you would be the first to be fined. He agrees that Class 1 and 2 should be permitted but the bureacrats in DC lumped assist bikes in with true e-Bikes that are basically electric motorcycles. He said the rules will evolve to include Class 1 and 2 just like the State of Colorado did, but "the wheels turn slowly in Washington". That's why they are doing some pilot programs in certain NFs - to assess the impact, or not.

They can't take CPW points because it isn't a State Title 33 violation.

From: txhunter58
10-Apr-19
So if a game warden cites you for hunting from an Ebike they can’t do anything other than write you a ticket?

From: txhunter58
10-Apr-19

From: Jaquomo
10-Apr-19
A game warden can't cite you for anything assist-bike related. Its not a Title 33 violation. It only violates NF Travel Management Rules (TMR). The state won't even issue motorized vehicle permits to ride them on NF motorized trails (like they do for ATVs on NF) because they aren't considered motorized by State law. Which is strange because all "motorized" OHVs on NF are required to have an OHV permit. It's a big cluster..

From: Jaquomo
10-Apr-19
Edit: a game warden could technically cite you since they now cooperate with NF LEOs for ATV violations. They, like NF LEOs, are spread so thin that they would really need an axe to grind to pursue a guy riding a bicycle (by state law).. But it has nothing to do with hunting or fishing codes so it doesn't count toward a hunting violation. Only an OHV violation. The 9 USFS people I encountered while riding on gated roads last summer couldn't care less except one guy who said, "I need to get one of those".

Edit 2: Title 33 requires that any bow carried on an OHV must be fully cased. But the state doesn't consider Class 1 and 2 assist bikes to be OHVs, which is why they don't require OHV permits to ride them in NF. Nobody has an answer on whether a bow on an assist bike needs to be cased. As with nearly every other assist bike question I've asked CPW, the answer is "Nobody has ever asked that question before". State law says they aren't motorized, and the cased bow rule is a state rule, not NF. Yet another cluster....

When I'm riding a closed road in NF that is gradual enough that I don't need steep climbing assist I pop off the battery and put it in my pack. Then Im simply riding a "fat bike", which I do regularly with no assist anyway for the workout.

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