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Old 10-22-2013, 11:18 AM   #11 (permalink)
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I used to bicycle commute to work. Built an electric bike, road it for two years and gained 20 pounds. Just couldn't get enough exercise with the electric motor attached--too easy to twist the throttle. Put the bike away, started riding a trike(pedal only) and lost 20 pounds over a couple years.
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Old 10-22-2013, 01:32 PM   #12 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Chris.m01 View Post
Thanks for the replies guys

@ Ryland & NeilBlanchard - We're thinking of having a vehicle very similar to the Elf but better styled and with doors

@UltArc - I don't really understand what that means

Thanks again guys
If it lower drag (with a good fish tail / Kamm back), then I'd buy one. If it has a bit more PV (the ELF can have 2X as an option) so that it can charge faster on the fly, and if it weighed less - then I'd get one in a flash!
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Old 10-22-2013, 02:10 PM   #13 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BarelyAWake View Post

...having said that an upright velo trike may be just about perfect for winter urban use where the speeds are lower & the roads better cared for.

Riding in the north american winter is a touch challenging, not impossible by any means but any comfort gained in an inclosed vehicle of this scale would be a trade off in dexterity & there's not enough mass for stability - around here a velo in the winter would be just plow fodder, the agility of a dirtbike is about all that keeps my ebike out of the ditch lol... mostly.
Thanks for the insight, that reaffirms our theory that people would mainly be using the vehicle in urban areas.
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Old 10-22-2013, 02:25 PM   #14 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by euromodder View Post
First thing : it's a niche, in a niche , in a niche market.

Trikes are still a rarity.
Enclosed trikes / velomobiles are an even greater rarity.
Those riding them usually ride them to combine training and commuting (with some weather protection) and/or for ecological reasons, so they usually don't add an engine.

The legal issues are high - with every country and many US states having different regulations.
In the EU,anything over 25 kph makes it a moped, with all the legal haggle that goes with it.
Over 1m wide, and you're banned from cycling paths.
Over 45 kph you're into motorcycle territory ... more haggling.


I don't have say a Velomobile with a BionX engine though I could easily afford one.
My main issue is where to put it - let alone where to charge it.
I'm a city dweller, I simply don't have the space to put it except out on the street.


To find easier acceptance than a velomobile, it'd need to be more practical to use.
Easier to get into.
More and better accessible baggage space.

It wouldn't be unlike the Elf.
But I'd still not have the space to park it, except out on the street ...
I see what you're saying. So the practicality of an Elf-like vehicle is a plus, yet still wouldn't be useful to you because you would still have to have a way to charge it. In this way, the electric-assist feature would be seen as a negative aspect rather than a selling point.

Thanks for your input.
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Old 10-22-2013, 02:29 PM   #15 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jjackstone View Post
I used to bicycle commute to work. Built an electric bike, road it for two years and gained 20 pounds. Just couldn't get enough exercise with the electric motor attached--too easy to twist the throttle. Put the bike away, started riding a trike(pedal only) and lost 20 pounds over a couple years.
JJ
That's actually a response I've gotten a few times now. It would seem that many bike riders do it for exercise rather than just another means of transportation.

Do you ever use the trike to run errands or pick up groceries?
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Old 10-22-2013, 02:38 PM   #16 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NeilBlanchard View Post
If it lower drag (with a good fish tail / Kamm back), then I'd buy one. If it has a bit more PV (the ELF can have 2X as an option) so that it can charge faster on the fly, and if it weighed less - then I'd get one in a flash!
So ideally, our vehicle would feature a solar panel, regenerative breaking, and be light with lower drag (stream-lined body). Thanks

Would your use of the vehicle be mainly for pleasure, commuting or errands?
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Old 10-22-2013, 03:24 PM   #17 (permalink)
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I like this so far.

I would like to be able to use the electric assist IMA style, when I can pedal, let me pedal, but when I have a hill, the electric assist would work. Maybe that is too complicated for a price efficient product. My immediate thought is like a multi speed bike, when one can change the gearing to pedal more but still get up the hill. Maybe that could help charge while going uphill, using the electric.
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Old 10-22-2013, 03:48 PM   #18 (permalink)
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An electric velomobile with a streamlined body has a market. Weight, convenience, and power will be dictated by cost and legal classification. In New York State it would have to be registered as a motorcycle using approved FMVSS motorcycle parts. Minimum seat height on a trike is 20 inches. Currently there are three classes of motorbikes based on speed and only Class A (+30 mph) can be home built. All others must be built by approved manufacturers. There is no legal provision for electric bikes at this time.

An electric velomobile would have a top speed of 45 mph, all weather capability, and a seat belt. Range would be 100 miles and charging time under 45 minutes. A common electrical circuit here in the US is 120v AC, 60 Hertz, 20 amp. If roll over strength is sufficient, 3x gross weight as static load, a helmet might not be needed. Most places consider a trike a motorcycle so helmet laws apply. Suburban commuting and one person errands would be the primary use. Target pricing is $5,000 - 8,000 USD.
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Old 10-22-2013, 03:49 PM   #19 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by UltArc View Post
I like this so far.

I would like to be able to use the electric assist IMA style, when I can pedal, let me pedal, but when I have a hill, the electric assist would work. Maybe that is too complicated for a price efficient product. My immediate thought is like a multi speed bike, when one can change the gearing to pedal more but still get up the hill. Maybe that could help charge while going uphill, using the electric.
To be fair, I don't exactly know the cost/feature tradeoff, but the entrepreneur we are working with says most things are possible.

Last edited by Chris.m01; 11-06-2013 at 11:34 PM..
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Old 10-22-2013, 08:33 PM   #20 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Chris.m01 View Post
So ideally, our vehicle would feature a solar panel, regenerative breaking, and be light with lower drag (stream-lined body). Thanks

Would your use of the vehicle be mainly for pleasure, commuting or errands?
Yes, all three. Commuting and errands and for fun. The low aero drag and a good dose of solar PV would be awesome.

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