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ebikes on the Shore

March 16, 2021, 6:19 p.m.
Posts: 8
Joined: March 12, 2021

Descending on a 50lb+ bike is just something I did in the early 2000's.

March 16, 2021, 7:38 p.m.
Posts: 1107
Joined: Nov. 23, 2002

Posted by: Mulletron

I rode my regular bike today, brought my dogs with me because it is much easier for the older one to keep up. Short ride, just under 6kms, ~260m elevation gain. In and out in 45 minutes, had a meeting cancel and I had a window. I cooked 550 calories.

When I ride my ebike, I can generally get in 30-40% more trail in the same period of time, and I'll burn about 20% more calories over the same period of time - it's a different kind of workout. Instead of the painful slower cadence, it feels more like riding a road bike or a spin bike. You need to run a cadence north of 70rpm to get into the fun zone on the ebike. My (older) dog doesn't like it as much.

It is what you make it. I think it is most important to have fun on your bike(s) and spend less time taking the piss out of eachother, unless of course it is earned by being a jerk on the trails, but unfortunately those folks exist on every type of bike out there.

It shouldn't be too surprising that you're burning more calories as you're doing more work in the same time frame - including on the dh. If people improve their fitness though and ride at a faster pace on a reg bike, they would probably burn more calories in the same time frame compared to an ebike. I think where the claims of better cardio on an ebike go awry is that people look at fitness as a linear in terms of work effort and output and it isn't. As your fitness improves your work capacity increases at more of an exponential rate till you get close to your max performance capacity and then it starts to taper off. That said, I find it surprising that you'd only get 30-40% more trail in in the same time period. Thinking of a typical Shore ride, I'd expect a rider of avg fitness would be able to get closer to double the amount of riding on an ebike compared to a reg bike.

Your last comment is the winner though. It shouldn't matter what people ride, as long as they are using good trail etiquette and have smiles on their faces that should be all that matters. I think it's good to see that the attitudes towards ebikes and ebike riders have calmed down since the beginning of the great ebike debate when a lot of people were being outright assholes in terms of their assumptions and attitudes towards people who might use them.


 Last edited by: syncro on March 17, 2021, 5:34 a.m., edited 1 time in total.
March 16, 2021, 7:39 p.m.
Posts: 1821
Joined: April 25, 2003

Yeah with the one I rode, while it got me access to more descents in the same time with only slightly more effort the descending  wasn’t nearly as good (slower too). On those trails I’d way rather ride a regular bike and shred harder.

March 16, 2021, 7:43 p.m.
Posts: 1107
Joined: Nov. 23, 2002

Posted by: craw

A few guys I know have sold their ebikes after a fair amount of proselytizing from them when they first got them. They all came to the same point that more laps in less time wasn't satisfying. Turns out that some difficult climbing contributes in a major way to the satisfaction of a ride, a satisfaction they didn't get on the ebike, which just makes it too easy they said. They also said they didn't like descending on such a heavy bike, which is ironic because the whole draw of the ebike is to do more laps in less time which means more descending on the bike that doesn't descend as well. 

That three separate experienced riders in three different places came to the same conclusion is interesting.

That is a pretty interesting observation. I think it would be cool to do a long term study that took into account a lot of different riding and lifestyle variables to see how people's attitudes about ebikes changed over time. That part about riding satisfaction is why I have little to no interest in an ebike  - and I assume why a lot of people I know have little to no interest as well. OTOH, I do see the appeal of an ebike in certain situations, but I'd never have one as my sole ride. And spending $10K on a bike that gets limited used just doesn't make any sense.

March 17, 2021, 5:22 a.m.
Posts: 41
Joined: Feb. 24, 2017

Posted by: craw

A few guys I know have sold their ebikes after a fair amount of proselytizing from them when they first got them. They all came to the same point that more laps in less time wasn't satisfying. Turns out that some difficult climbing contributes in a major way to the satisfaction of a ride, a satisfaction they didn't get on the ebike, which just makes it too easy they said. They also said they didn't like descending on such a heavy bike, which is ironic because the whole draw of the ebike is to do more laps in less time which means more descending on the bike that doesn't descend as well. 

That three separate experienced riders in three different places came to the same conclusion is interesting.

That is exactly why I sold mine. 

They are everywhere here in AZ now though.  Probably half of the bikes I see on the trail are eBikes now.

March 17, 2021, 8:15 a.m.
Posts: 8
Joined: March 12, 2021

Posted by: syncro

OTOH, I do see the appeal of an ebike in certain situations, but I'd never have one as my sole ride. And spending $10K on a bike that gets limited used just doesn't make any sense.

Taking this thought process even further it would be much more appealing to have an e-bike if/when most of your riding buddies have them.

March 17, 2021, 8:21 a.m.
Posts: 672
Joined: Jan. 31, 2005

Posted by: Ride.DMC

Posted by: syncro

OTOH, I do see the appeal of an ebike in certain situations, but I'd never have one as my sole ride. And spending $10K on a bike that gets limited used just doesn't make any sense.

Taking this thought process even further it would be much more appealing to have an e-bike if/when most of your riding buddies have them.

And when will that be? What's the critical mass number for people in your group? At first one or two but is that enough to create the kind of change that gets your whole community to switch? Given the mixed results here for experienced riders I'd say unless your whole group is noobs who need the assist just to keep up - probably not.

March 17, 2021, 8:43 a.m.
Posts: 8
Joined: Jan. 19, 2004

Posted by: Ride.DMC

Posted by: syncro

OTOH, I do see the appeal of an ebike in certain situations, but I'd never have one as my sole ride. And spending $10K on a bike that gets limited used just doesn't make any sense.

Taking this thought process even further it would be much more appealing to have an e-bike if/when most of your riding buddies have them.

I agree with this. Our core group is about a half dozen who have been riding together weekly since the mid 90's and everyone has added an ebike to their quiver - it is a different experience when you are riding with all ebikes for sure.

March 17, 2021, 8:52 a.m.
Posts: 8
Joined: Jan. 19, 2004

Posted by: syncro

That said, I find it surprising that you'd only get 30-40% more trail in in the same time period. Thinking of a typical Shore ride, I'd expect a rider of avg fitness would be able to get closer to double the amount of riding on an ebike compared to a reg bike

I don't know, you know some of the guys I ride with (Mike W), double the riding has been a bit of a stretch. Same speed on the way down, but I'd say on average climbing anywhere from 2x to 3x as fast. Same amount of time stopping to take the piss out of each other. I guess it really depends on the ride.

It goes without saying in our group that you aren't a prick about the climbing speed..normal bikes have the right of way on the way up, always. Slow down and wait, just like you do on the normal bike when you pass a slower rider on the climb. No different than etiquette on the way down. Unfortunately there are always bad apples, no matter what kind of bike they are riding.

March 17, 2021, 12:43 p.m.
Posts: 1179
Joined: Nov. 6, 2006

With the higher capacity batteries that are out now, about five top to bottoms at the Woodlot. A little more in the warmer weather.

March 17, 2021, 2:51 p.m.
Posts: 1107
Joined: Nov. 23, 2002

Posted by: Mulletron

I don't know, you know some of the guys I ride with (Mike W), double the riding has been a bit of a stretch. Same speed on the way down, but I'd say on average climbing anywhere from 2x to 3x as fast. Same amount of time stopping to take the piss out of each other. I guess it really depends on the ride.

It goes without saying in our group that you aren't a prick about the climbing speed..normal bikes have the right of way on the way up, always. Slow down and wait, just like you do on the normal bike when you pass a slower rider on the climb. No different than etiquette on the way down. Unfortunately there are always bad apples, no matter what kind of bike they are riding.

Strange, I was thinking that with being able to get up the hill 2-3x as fast that you could get two laps in the same time it would normally take to do one. But I guess if you're achingly slow on the way down then that would throw things off a bit ;)

Nice to have you back btw, when I saw your name pop up I was ohhh shit, look who's here. And yeah bad passing technique is probably the worst rider behaviour, next to not making any effort in regards to trail maintenance.

March 18, 2021, 10:49 a.m.
Posts: 163
Joined: Feb. 24, 2017

Posted by: grambo

Have definitely seen the turds blasting up Mountain Highway and Old Buck on turbo mode with head down not acknowledging others (some must be self aware and realize they will not be received kindly).

Why do people get their panties in a wad about riders not acknowledging others??? Every rider on the trail isn't yer bud we don't all need to be friends.

March 18, 2021, 11:19 a.m.
Posts: 174
Joined: Feb. 24, 2017

Posted by: earleb

Posted by: grambo

Have definitely seen the turds blasting up Mountain Highway and Old Buck on turbo mode with head down not acknowledging others (some must be self aware and realize they will not be received kindly).

Why do people get their panties in a wad about riders not acknowledging others??? Every rider on the trail isn't yer bud we don't all need to be friends.

Your are right Brian, but I sure would have appreciated some sort of heads-up by the e-biker who blasted past me on Warden's climb.  I don't expect faster riders to stay behind me all the way up a climb, but letting me know they are there and waiting for an appropriate place to pass is just good etiquette.

March 18, 2021, 3:14 p.m.
Posts: 820
Joined: March 15, 2013

It's not about being friends... and it's less of an acknowledgment thing and more of a mutual respect thing. Basically the reason why turn signals and brake lights exist in cars, make people aware of what others (and yourself) are doing for the safety and consideration of everyone when you are in public.

I'm sure nobody appreciates being passed too close at too high of a speed on the highway. Just have some courtesy, let people know you are passing, slow as you go by and give both of you a little room.

It's really not hard at all to treat others with respect, ebikes, cars, sidewalks, whatever.


 Last edited by: thaaad on March 18, 2021, 3:14 p.m., edited 1 time in total.
Reason: Autocorrect got me good
March 18, 2021, 3:37 p.m.
Posts: 1107
Joined: Nov. 23, 2002

+1

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