Advice on ebike conversion kit for 30mile commute

Hilly

Finding my (electric) wheels
Jun 12, 2019
24
3
I had a quick google and I'm not sure you can buy those motors in the UK. Mybe they're marketed under a different name?

I think a gravel bike with a 48v 328 rpm Q128C rear motor and a 52V battery would give you an acceptable cruising speed, and with a battery with enough charge to go full power all the way (one way), it would still be lighter than your Haibike. The kit with a 52v 17.5Ah battery would weigh about 8kg. Look for a donor with hydraulic discs, which will be much more reliable for long distance commuting. They're a lot more expensive, but worth it. especially when you only have thin tyres and need to have good modulation to prevent skidding.
 

Hilly

Finding my (electric) wheels
Jun 12, 2019
24
3
Do you think this would be suitable?

Planet X London



Before I found a used MTB to stick a rear hub in I tried a gravel bike like this:



It was a bit more comfortable and stable feeling than proper road bikes I’d briefly tried in the past, while being extremely quick off the mark. You could probably get a similar effect by putting an extra wide handlebar and thick tires on an old road bike.

Dammit I’m giving myself ideas now!
 

jarob10

Pedelecer
Jan 22, 2017
205
56
46
Uk
Personally I’d go full suspension for 60 mile round trip. Suitable frames are getting hard to find, but not impossible
 
  • Like
Reactions: Hilly

UphillBattle

Pedelecer
May 7, 2019
31
4
@Hilly Q128C - only place that sells it, you won’t find it in the UK. I found BMS a pain to deal with but they got there in the end.

AKM128CST - apparently the same motor, different branding. TBK much easier to deal with than BMS.

Yes that bike looks like the same kind of idea as the Glencoe.
 
  • Like
Reactions: Hilly

vfr400

Esteemed Pedelecer
Jun 12, 2011
3,179
975
Basildon
BMSbattery have been trading for ages. I think I first used them in 2011. They're fine as a supplier. Just buy the motor from whoever is the cheapest, and make sure that you get the right speed.

That Planet X bike looks OK.

Basically, you can get your speed with a lower power, lightweight, streamlined bike or with a heavy, high power, unstealthy MTB type. When you go over 20 mph, air resistance/streamlining makes a big difference to how much power you need.
 
  • Like
Reactions: Hilly

Barrio Barranco

Esteemed Pedelecer
Nov 24, 2018
255
91
51
60 mile round trip on an e bike....Kudos but I'd never do it, it's a fair old distance. I HAD to commute 75 miles each way when we bought our house and I needed to find a new job. I slept in my Combo van 2 nights a week to ease the pressure. It's not just the fuel/petrol/eco thing it's about sanity and what is workable. That was in a van, kitted out for all eventualities and down to -25c and road closures.....good luck but this is too far in my opinion.
 
  • Agree
  • Like
Reactions: LeighPing and Hilly

minexplorer

Esteemed Pedelecer
Aug 22, 2017
488
85
51
Four Lanes,Cornwall
Hi everyone,

I'm thinking of getting an ebike conversion kit for commuting and would like some advice about which one would be the right one for me.

first I'll explain my current situation and what I'm hoping to achieve by building my own ebike.

I have quite a long commute, 30 miles each way with a couple of steep hills but mostly flat. I currently have a 2016 Haibike Sduro (with the speed limiter removed) and a car and alternate between the two. I would like to cycle more often but find that it takes too long (1 hour 20 to 2 hours depending on conditions and how lazy / tired I am feeling). I have a 36v 14.5AH battery on it.

My plan is to get a more powerful bike by adding a motor to an existing MTB and get it classified as a two wheeled vehicle so I can legally do 28mph on it (i'm based in the UK).

I would like to be doing 28mph for most of the journey and get my journey time down to just over an hour each way.

I'm generally drawn to the Bafang motors, either the BBSHD or BBS02(b). The BBS02 seems attractive because it's slightly lighter but would the BBSHD potentially get me there quicker? Does anyone know which one would be more efficient on that kind of journey? Would i need an enormous battery to do 30 miles in one hour? what would be the optimum sized chain ring for this kind of journey?

I'm also a bit unclear about how the pedals integrate with the motor on the Bafang. I'm happy to put in a decent amount of effort with the pedals if it means a quicker journey and a smaller battery. If i was doing top speed would I struggle to pedal fast enough to keep up with the motor? If so would a larger chain ring help to solve that problem? On my Haibike I find that at around 25mph the pedals can't keep up with the motor and I can't contribute much.

I'd also consider a hub motor if people thought that was more suitable for this kind of journey.

I've attached a diagram showing the elevation of the route taken from google maps.

Any advice would be greatly appreciated as I'm finding the whole thing a bit bewildering.

Thanks!View attachment 30966
60miles range at 30mph is impossible. my bbshd (mtb, chunky tyres)will easily maintain 30+ mph on flat terrain. but the range from my 15ah 52v 30Q cells, maintaining that speed wld be maybe 16 miles max. cutting power to average 20 mph , can get 27 miles range.the biggest batteries ive seen are 28ah triangle packs. very expensive.
 
  • Like
Reactions: Hilly

Paul chef

Pedelecer
Sep 9, 2017
50
3
57
Llanelli, Wales
Also check out Andy Kirby on YouTube he’s importing Chinese emtb with the new befang motor, looks a nice bit of kit, think he’d got frame battery and motor then you add your own forks, wheels etc
 
  • Like
Reactions: Hilly

Nealh

Esteemed Pedelecer
Aug 7, 2014
8,321
3,133
56
West Sx RH
The Aikema 128 hub is used by Wisper and I believe Juicy on their bikes.
20 miles is enough for keeping your sanity esp in conditions when it is cold and wet.
Someone like Kirstin may validate this as he cycles all year round to work not 20 miles but enough for his input.
My brother uses a dongled Steps bike and a Bosch S-ped for a 20 mile each way ride but limits it to about two rides a week, rest of time he uses a moped or car if really wet or cold.
 
  • Informative
  • Like
Reactions: LeighPing and Hilly

Hilly

Finding my (electric) wheels
Jun 12, 2019
24
3
60 mile round trip on an e bike....Kudos but I'd never do it, it's a fair old distance. I HAD to commute 75 miles each way when we bought our house and I needed to find a new job. I slept in my Combo van 2 nights a week to ease the pressure. It's not just the fuel/petrol/eco thing it's about sanity and what is workable. That was in a van, kitted out for all eventualities and down to -25c and road closures.....good luck but this is too far in my opinion.
The thing is, I have the car and I sometimes stay at my girlfriend's in London so I'm not doing it day in day out.

The traffic in the SE is getting so bad now it would be good to use the bike more often especially if I need to travel in during rush 'hour' (which now lasts for about six hours every day). Also with the car I have to stay at work until at least 7pm even if I don't have much to do.
 
  • Informative
Reactions: LeighPing

Hilly

Finding my (electric) wheels
Jun 12, 2019
24
3
I've noticed with the haibike, on the downhill bits if i get down into a more aerodynamic position then i can achieve more speed without pedalling than if i sit upright and pedal.

BMSbattery have been trading for ages. I think I first used them in 2011. They're fine as a supplier. Just buy the motor from whoever is the cheapest, and make sure that you get the right speed.

That Planet X bike looks OK.

Basically, you can get your speed with a lower power, lightweight, streamlined bike or with a heavy, high power, unstealthy MTB type. When you go over 20 mph, air resistance/streamlining makes a big difference to how much power you need.
 

Hilly

Finding my (electric) wheels
Jun 12, 2019
24
3
60miles range at 30mph is impossible. my bbshd (mtb, chunky tyres)will easily maintain 30+ mph on flat terrain. but the range from my 15ah 52v 30Q cells, maintaining that speed wld be maybe 16 miles max. cutting power to average 20 mph , can get 27 miles range.the biggest batteries ive seen are 28ah triangle packs. very expensive.
I should have said that i can charge the battery at work so it's only 29miles each way.
 

Hilly

Finding my (electric) wheels
Jun 12, 2019
24
3
btw, does anyone have experience with the bafang hub motors or know if they might be suitable?
 

Nealh

Esteemed Pedelecer
Aug 7, 2014
8,321
3,133
56
West Sx RH
Bafang hubs are generally reliable, I have a BPM & CST no major issues . Like wise the Yose no issues and made by Bafang Afaik.
You will need 48v and about 270/300 rpm winding code 10 or 11 for a sustained 20 - 24 mph.
 
  • Useful
  • Like
Reactions: LeighPing and Hilly

vfr400

Esteemed Pedelecer
Jun 12, 2011
3,179
975
Basildon
For a middle-sized motor, the Q128 seems to be more reliable than the Bafang SWX02, but the larger Bafang motors (BPM and CST) are pretty good. Obviously, the bigger the motor, the more power they can handle. The Q128 punches above its weight because it has a higher reduction ratio.
 
  • Like
Reactions: Hilly

anotherkiwi

Esteemed Pedelecer
Jan 26, 2015
7,818
5,769
The European Union
I've noticed with the haibike, on the downhill bits if i get down into a more aerodynamic position then i can achieve more speed without pedalling than if i sit upright and pedal.
Et voila! Aerodynamics, you could do your commute on a bent (with e-assist).

- OK so you have to learn to ride a bike all over again...
- you don't need such a powerful motor so a BBS02 is plenty
- you will use maybe 6 Wh/km so a decent battery will get you there and back
- you will be more comfortable and that counts over long distances like that
 

Woosh

Trade Member
May 19, 2012
12,068
9,260
Southend on Sea
wooshbikes.co.uk
I concur.
If you want miles, go lightweight. The XF07 is fantastic for it.
I gave up on the BBS02 for 2 years now.
 

minexplorer

Esteemed Pedelecer
Aug 22, 2017
488
85
51
Four Lanes,Cornwall
I should have said that i can charge the battery at work so it's only 29miles each way.
then buy a bbshd with a 52v triangle battery of around 25ah + and you can have that 30mph speed all the way,ideal.the torqe the bbshd produces for hill climbing and acceleration is amazing.in hindsight i would never bother with anything else....if i could afford a large capacity battery.my 350w bbs01 prob wouldnt get much use ,but i can go 40 miles at max power on it ,with its two 36v (30ah) cheaper batteries.
 
Last edited: