The tale of a £100 second hand electric bike.

georgehenry

Esteemed Pedelecer
Nov 7, 2015
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Surrey
NIMBI Retirement Development Escalation

This is what I wrote in June last year.

"This is part of the section of my off road route (avoiding a parallel dangerous rat run section of country lane) I would miss out on if I was put off by the retirement complex Nimbies and the two gates and approximately 100 meter section to get past them at the end. To put it into perspective, in the four years since it was built and my regular use of this section I have actually seen someone from the development about four times in total."

They cannot block the right of way but have tried to make it as difficult as possible for cyclist.

Ride to work Beech avenue 8 6 18 004.JPG

As usual riding this section when out of lock down I see precious few people, but in lock down quite a few. the resounding majority of which are very friendly with greetings exchanged. I slow right down to a stop if necessary and use a tring tring bell.

Using the now much used term transparency. For full transparency I have to admit that this section is a footpath not a bridle path. I use it with great care and consideration as it avoids a parallel rat run B road, and is therefore much safer.

The retirement development actually show little discrimination between cyclist and walkers, they hate us all, but they cannot stop walkers.

Anyway riding it yesterday I negotiated the first gate and then found workmen at the other end working on the electric gates which are triggered by a weight sensor, that I trigger on approach by putting my front wheel on the pad. I asked if they were broken and was told, "No, we have been asked to put the weight sensor up to maximum so that bicycles do not trigger it, the residents really hate cyclist"

I am using the route today, so will see if my less than ideal weight combined with the bike and panniers triggers the gates to allow me to pass. Rather than just putting my front wheel on I will position me and the whole bike over it.

"You shall not pass"

You never know, putting the weight limit to maximum might back fire and mean some cars do not trigger the gate.

If I cannot trigger the gate, it will be panniers off and a dead lift over a rather tight kissing gate between the iron gates and a wall, then panniers on.

I think getting through the kissing gate adjacent to the iron gates will be much harder than the other one and could mean victory for the retirement development, which will mean I have lost two lovely sections of off road route to protectionist land owners with rights of way over their properties they would prefer not to exist.

The discussion about my woes with the retirement development ended up in the £100 ebike thread but, it is my Haibike that gets ridden through this section of my route.
 
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Ocsid

Esteemed Pedelecer
Aug 2, 2017
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If the sensor does not work, then they might be "scotched" if you speak to the rights of way officer, about the legality of blocking someone pushing a bike, wheelchair, pram or buggy on a registered footpath?

"You are allowed to take a pram, push-chair, or wheelchair along any public footpath, -----" Quote taken from LINK

Some paths have obstructions that clearly inhibit doing so, but here they are retrospectively deliberately blocking what is legitimate use. Play the very sensitive "diversity loss" card, the loss for the disabled in particular, if that route had previously been viable for them.
 
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georgehenry

Esteemed Pedelecer
Nov 7, 2015
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Surrey
Well I have to say I approached the weight sensor on my ride to work today with some trepidation. I rode onto it at an angle that allowed the whole bike to bear down. there was a satisfying audible click and the gates swung open.

Unfortunately I passed a sour faced old bloke who I am sure is a resident and seemed to be keeping an eye on my approach and he may well have been watching what happened, so this might not be the end of it.

I may well have to follow Ocsid's suggestion and involve the local council rights of way officer as the changes the development have made to make passing by this development more difficult are indeed recent and retrospective and would also prevent wheelchair users or prams dependent on type and could also present difficulties for other types of disability.
 

Nealh

Esteemed Pedelecer
Aug 7, 2014
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A right of way it needs going to the local council or county council, they are infringing users use of a public right of way. One could paly the card more so if disabled or a venerable person as discrimination.
 

georgehenry

Esteemed Pedelecer
Nov 7, 2015
1,139
1,001
Surrey
Road to work off road again today, and using my new method of riding effectively in a circle so that the whole bike is on the pad does trigger the gates.
 
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georgehenry

Esteemed Pedelecer
Nov 7, 2015
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Surrey
Well they have either disabled the weight sensor or raised it to a point that I no longer trigger it, so I cannot now get the electric gates to open.

However, getting through the second kissing gate was easier than I expected after being forced to do so yesterday and today.

So I now have two kissing gates to overcome with about 150 yards in between.

Thank goodness I have quick release panniers. My Ortleib panniers are a doddle to take off and put back on, literally seconds.

After the development of the retirement development and the arrival of the electric gates I stopped riding this route in the other direction as I thought the kissing gate would be really difficult to get through but now I know it is easier than I thought, I can.

Those lovely retirees may get to see me a bit more than before.

I would not put it past them to do something else that I cannot overcome. To my knowledge no one from the development saw me ride through yesterday and today so time will tell.
 
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flecc

Member
Oct 25, 2006
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Well they have either disabled the weight sensor or raised it to a point that I no longer trigger it, so I cannot now get the electric gates to open.
Can you do a big jump up and hard down alongside the bike to multiply your weight and trigger the gate opening?

Two of us showed that works in a lift, triggering the overload sensor and locking the lift stationary.
.
 
D

Deleted member 33385

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Can you do a big jump up and hard down alongside the bike to multiply your weight and trigger the gate opening?

Two of us showed that works in a lift, triggering the overload sensor and locking the lift stationary.
.


Were you re-enacting the scene out of Die Hard? Climbing lift cables looks hard...


 

flecc

Member
Oct 25, 2006
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Were you re-enacting the scene out of Die Hard? Climbing lift cables looks hard...


No, we were due on a show stand for the company's products, a duty we weren't looking forward to as we were going down in the lift to breakfast in the hotel. Then my colleague had the idea of trying this to simulate the weight of several people. We jumped together, slamming down hard and it worked, the lift abruptly locked between floors for well over an hour.

The fire brigade were called to wind us down, where we were met by a profusely apologetic hotel manager who assured us that they'd kept the breakfast staff back ready for us. So we enjoyed a leisurely breakfast, eventually turning up on the stand with almost half the day gone, complete with a perfect excuse for the angry MD who'd held the fort.
.
 
D

Deleted member 33385

Guest
No, we were due on a show stand for the company's products, a duty we weren't looking forward to as we were going down in the lift to breakfast in the hotel. Then my colleague had the idea of trying this to simulate the weight of several people. We jumped together, slamming down hard and it worked, the lift abruptly locked between floors for well over an hour.

The fire brigade were called to wind us down, where we were met by a profusely apologetic hotel manager who assured us that they'd kept the breakfast staff back ready for us. So we enjoyed a leisurely breakfast, eventually turning up on the stand with almost half the day gone, complete with a perfect excuse for the angry MD who'd held the fort.
.

Nice sabotage! Trade stands - it can be handy meeting the unwashed masses, or other managers in the same line of business, because you can learn something useful about your product or service, but that very much depends on the unwashed mass you encounter. But it's highly debatable as to their actual value - "Half our PR budget is wasted, but we don't know which half".
 
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georgehenry

Esteemed Pedelecer
Nov 7, 2015
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Surrey
Hi flecc, I may try your jump up and down ruse, however, as I now know the second kissing gate is in fact a cinch I will just panniers off, kissing gate, panniers on.

I expect when one of them sees me do that there will be a turn stile next!

My rear brake had developed a most annoying repetitive squeak. I replaced the rotor as it looked as if the original had warped and the squeak has gone.

I also adjusted the mechanical back brake with the rear wheel re fitted by removing the caliper as both vfr400 and Nealh had previously suggested, and which worked a treat.

So the £100 electric steed with perfectly adjusted and mercifully silent brakes is once more ready to rock and roll. In fact it never stopped rocking and rolling but I will be a lot happier now the squeaking is no more.
 

georgehenry

Esteemed Pedelecer
Nov 7, 2015
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Surrey
Hi flecc again.

I felt a bit stupid, even though there was no one around but I did try your suggestion of jumping. sadly to no avail.

Its the kissing gate for me now.
 
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D

Deleted member 33385

Guest
Hi flecc again.

I felt a bit stupid, even though there was no one around but I did try your suggestion of jumping. sadly to no avail.

Its the kissing gate for me now.

Maybe increase force (mass X acceleration) by jumping with your bike (more mass, can't alter gravity just yet ie acceleration), while holding your bike off the ground? And have a big breakfast.
 
D

Deleted member 33385

Guest
Hi flecc again.

I felt a bit stupid, even though there was no one around but I did try your suggestion of jumping. sadly to no avail.

Its the kissing gate for me now.

Flecc and his friend may have had a combined weight of over 130kg or more (maybe much, much more ;))- another possibility is to carry a small jump ramp (or make one to store hidden nearby), and jump your bike onto the sensor. If that doesn't work, add weights to the bike. One way or another, that sensor can be activated...
 
D

Deleted member 33385

Guest
Would the sensor activate if you earthed a high voltage?


 
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georgehenry

Esteemed Pedelecer
Nov 7, 2015
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Surrey
£100 second hand ebike bike continues to impress as I ride it into its third year.

Cold zero degrees rides to work, followed by T Shirt and shorts ride home.......

The temperature difference between the ride to work and the ride home has been huge.

Today was my last early shift of six consecutive early shifts.

At the start there was the potential of 120 miles to be ridden.

After my first ride in on Friday however, I was rostered to be at home on Saturday ready to be called in to work only if needed.

As it turned out I was needed but to get where I was required could only be accomplished by taking my car.

On Sunday I was again rostered to be at home, and this time was not required and stayed at home. Nice when it happens as you are paid for 9 hours work for sitting at home with your mobile on.

So three days of work had resulted in only one ride to work and back.

This changed with Monday, Tuesday and today all with work allocated, and three consecutive rides to work and back.

With the exception of my wet ride home today I have enjoyed crisp cold rides to work with the temperature around zero degrees and then a T shirt and shorts ride home. The temperature difference between the ride to work and the ride home has as I have said above been huge.

To Turn the bike on and then turn the lights on requires two of the three buttons on the display to be pressed simultaneously, first to get the bike to turn on, and then a second time to get the lights to turn on. If this goes smoothly, the display simply shows you current speed on my ride to work.

Sometimes it is a little temperamental and the lights do not come on when the buttons are pressed the second time and I have to press the two buttons again. If the lights then come on the display will now show average speed.

This happened yesterday and I rode home with my average speed recorded for the whole of my 10 mile journey. Right at the start I had to stop and wait for a level crossing to clear. I had to come to a dead stop on a couple of other occasions.

Despite this the £100 ebike recorded an average speed at the end of my 10 mile journey of 20.2 mph. I was quite impressed.

So at the end of my six shifts I had ridden 80 miles.

After my wet ride home the odometer was showing that the bike had now completed over 2,600 miles.
 
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flecc

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£100 second hand ebike bike continues to impress as I ride it into its third year.

After my wet ride home the odometer was showing that the bike had now completed over 2,600 miles.
At just 3.8 pence per mile initial capital cost, that's impressive.

Just think, if it was a £5500 Riese and Muller or similar, that would be over £2.11 per mile to date but still only doing the same job at 55 times the price.
.
 

georgehenry

Esteemed Pedelecer
Nov 7, 2015
1,139
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Surrey
They are both broadly governed by the same laws and permissible power outputs.

Actually my 2011 second hand bike has a very useful unrestricted throttle that the Riese and Muller bike cannot have.

As I have found with another bike I own, a crank drive Haibike, a crank drive system requires much more regular replacement of components in the drive train than a rear hub driven bike.

I do actually like the look of the Riese and Muller bikes, but also believe that the reputation for engineering excellence and reliability of German made mechanical products is as much a manifestation of their clever marketing approach than any real engineering advantage.

When I bought my Yamaha powered Haibike the salesman asked whether I might be happier buying the more established equivalent Bosch powered bike rather than the new that year to the UK Yamaha one.

Not withstanding the small issue of the Bosch powered bike being £500 more expensive, I told him I had owned Yamaha motorcycles and was very confident the engineering expertise behind the Yamaha motor was likely to be of an equivalently high standard of the Bosch.
 
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georgehenry

Esteemed Pedelecer
Nov 7, 2015
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Surrey
The £100 second hand ebike continues to excel

Today is day 5 of 6 consecutive Early Shifts at work.

The story so far....

The start of my 6 early shifts was on Friday the 18th of June. My job was the earliest start in our depot. I had to be there at 04:14 in the morning.

Despite the early start and a little rain the 20 mile return ride to work and back was relaxing and fun on the £100 ebike.

On Saturday the 19th of June I really should have looked harder at the weather maps. The ride in was very pleasant. However the ride home became a torrential downpour. At least I know that the £100 ebike works well in a flood!

On Sunday the 20th and Monday the 21st I was able to ride my other old original Oxygen down to my local station and commute to work on the train and then ride back home from the station.

Today, Tuesday the 22nd of June was another early start and 20 mile ride to work and back on the £100 ebike. I had to do a special job that required me to be at work at 04:39, but it was a short job and I was riding back home again by 07:30, and home just after 08:00. So an easy day, and a lovely ride in the early dawn light.

The job was so short in fact that the battery did not get a chance to fully re charge!

The ride home was in busy impatient traffic, with many vans squeezing by. I control my road space and have a mirror to keep an eye on what is going on behind me so that I can move out a little to deter an overtake where it might be dangerous to me.

I am working at home tomorrow, so although I only rode to work and back properly three times, I used my older ebike on the other two days to ride to the railway station and back. So once again my car remained on my drive way like a sailor marooned on an Island.

The £100 Ebike completed 60 miles and the odometer has crept up to 2,700 miles, of which I have ridden 2,200 miles since I acquired her.

What a bargain she was and continues to be as well as a hoot to ride.
 

georgehenry

Esteemed Pedelecer
Nov 7, 2015
1,139
1,001
Surrey
Back in the fold.......

After nearly two months off the £100 second hand Ebike got pulled out of the garage, first as a substitute for my Haibike after it got a puncture, to finish of a run of late shift jobs with two trips to work and back, and then in its own right after my three days off to get me to three early shift jobs and then home again afterwards.

These were earlier start time shifts I am required to do, the start times of which I will not miss when I retire from work in a few weeks. The second of which was the earliest start time for my job role, where I needed to be at work at 04:14. A younger guy who rides a 14 mile round trip to work said he was impressed with my stamina to do that at my age, Cheeky bugger.

You have to be well organised when you ride a bike to work and I get all my stuff ready before I go to bed the night before so that I can be up and on the road with the minimum of bother.

So my £100 second hand rear hub bike after being woken from its two month period of dormancy has completed 100 miles and five return trips to work.

It continues to impress as its mileage hits 2,823. I cannot think of a more relaxing and easy way to commute to work and back early in the morning than by this type of geared rear hub bike.

So far I have replaced one set of brake pads, a rear cassette and a chain, and a few spokes to get the rear wheel stabalized and added a saddle of my choice.

There are four early jobs to commute to from Monday which will add another 80 miles to my £100 second hand ebikes tally.
 
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