UK - legality of thumb-throttles in DIY conversions

vulcanears

Pedelecer
May 23, 2018
68
20
40
Hey guys,

I'm a bit confused about the legality of thum-throttles in DIY ebike kit-conversions after reading lots of conflicting information.

I've been in a few car accidents in my life and insurances usually try anything to avoid paying. So i want a 100% road legal bike to avoid any serious trouble in case of an accident.

http://www.pedelecs.co.uk/news/dft-pedal-cycles-converted-twist-go-exempt-type-approval/

After reading this article, i assume that thumb throttles up to 15.5mph are okay as long as the bike is not new at the point of conversion to an ebike?

Is the information in the article still correct, or has it changed since 2016?

Thank you in advance
 

Woosh

Trade Member
May 19, 2012
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Twist and go throttles are not allowed but the police is not interested in catching anyone using a throttle under the legal speed 25km per hour.
So if you use the throttle to climb hills, you will probably be OK, using the throttle to overtake a policeman on his push bike is risky.
 
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Deleted member 4366

Guest
6km/hr throttles are completely legal. Most controllers with LCDs have a software setting to change it from 6km/hr to full-range. It only takes a few seconds to change it from one to the other. That's the same with the speed limit.
 

vulcanears

Pedelecer
May 23, 2018
68
20
40
That's why i'm confused. The article that i linked in the first post, specifically says that throttles up to 15.5mph are allowed for DIY conversions, and yet, people keep saying that they are not allowed.

Has the DfT's view been updated since the date of the article?
 
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spanos

Pedelecer
Feb 18, 2011
244
64
Oh gosh, I thought I knew this but this thread confuses me

I believed full 15.5 mph throttle was legal as long as

1. It’s a conversion, not a factory built
2. The pedals must be turning for the throttle to work

Is this wrong ?
 

flecc

Member
Oct 25, 2006
50,645
28,489
Oh gosh, I thought I knew this but this thread confuses me

I believed full 15.5 mph throttle was legal as long as

1. It’s a conversion, not a factory built
2. The pedals must be turning for the throttle to work

Is this wrong ?
This is true. The only thing that makes throttles illegal is if they work without pedalling.

Even manufactured pedelecs have throttles, since their switched power levels are simply stepped throttles.
.
 

Woosh

Trade Member
May 19, 2012
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Southend on Sea
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there is no problem with twist and go: it's not allowed.
you have to pedal first before the full throttle is activated.
Note that the regulations apply only to manufacturers and importers.
the ambiguity is the decay time, how long the motor can run on under throttle after you stop pedaling? 5 seconds? 10 seconds? 30 seconds?
 

vulcanears

Pedelecer
May 23, 2018
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Thank you for the clarification, everyone. (and just to be clear: I'm talking about DIY conversions)

Does anyone know if kits like the Bafang BBS-01b have a way to program the controller in a way that cuts throttle-use when the pedals are not turning?
 

Dewey

Pedelecer
Sep 12, 2016
102
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Arlington, VA
The only thing that makes throttles illegal is if they work without pedalling.
Curious, how does this work to program a Bafang BBS motor to be UK legal? In the controller software the throttle page has a Mode setting that can be switched between Current and Speed. On another thread d8veh said in Current mode the throttle acts like a normal throttle when not pedalling, then when you start pedalling the PAS current control kicks in, so does that mean when programming the PAS page you ought to set top speed as 25kmh and on the throttle page set top speed as 6kmh and Mode to Current?
 

Woosh

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May 19, 2012
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Does anyone know if kits like the Bafang BBS-01b have a way to program the controller in a way that cuts throttle-use when the pedals are not turning?
No. If you are worried, leave the throttle unplugged.
That's what I tell my customers if they take their bike to Europe (leave the throttle unplugged).
 
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vulcanears

Pedelecer
May 23, 2018
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That's weird. Whole Europe including UK must have the same problem and it would be incredibly easy to implement that in the controller software...
 
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vulcanears

Pedelecer
May 23, 2018
68
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40
Does anyone know if kits like the Bafang BBS-01b have a way to program the controller in a way that cuts throttle-use when the pedals are not turning?
What about other manufacturers or standalone controllers for hub motors? Is anyone aware of a controller that supports this feature?
 
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Deleted member 4366

Guest
What about other manufacturers or standalone controllers for hub motors? Is anyone aware of a controller that supports this feature?
If that's what you're going to do, there's no point in fitting a throttle because you can get all the power you want from the pedal sensor in a much more controllable and convenient way. You only need a throttle if you want power without pedalling.
 
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Woosh

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May 19, 2012
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Southend on Sea
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What about other manufacturers or standalone controllers for hub motors? Is anyone aware of a controller that supports this feature?
yes, I use Lishui controllers on the black bikes, they are programmed to activate only when you pedal. You can stop pedaling after the throttle takes over, the throttle stays active until you brake or reduce the throttle level quickly.
 

vulcanears

Pedelecer
May 23, 2018
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If that's what you're going to do, there's no point in fitting a throttle because you can get all the power you want from the pedal sensor in a much more controllable and convenient way. You only need a throttle if you want power without pedalling.
are you talking about cadence sensors?
i tried a few diy conversions from friends and i always found the throttle much more convenient in terms of exact power control and powerful boosts in a city stop-and-go environment.
 

Benjahmin

Esteemed Pedelecer
Nov 10, 2014
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West Wales
If the throttle is programmed to work only AFTER you start pedalling, you lose it's main function - that of hill starts.
My kit, which has a full (you naughty boy) acting throttle, was bought in 2014 and it's now on a 2016 bike, so I have grandfather rights officer ;) no honest I do. Mind you, I've never yet seen a copper when I've been performing my hills starts on the back lanes of Ceredigion.
 

anotherkiwi

Esteemed Pedelecer
Jan 26, 2015
7,845
5,784
The European Union
That's weird. Whole Europe including UK must have the same problem and it would be incredibly easy to implement that in the controller software...
The first time I ever saw a throttle in use in the EU was last week (in what you would call Spain). It was an illegal throttle and on a hub motor bike. People here aren't scared to pedal their bikes...
 
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