E-BIKE TECH CORNER
WHAT’S COOL ANYWAY
Q: What’s with riders having the visor on their helmets mounted so high?
A: The high-visor trend is like a super-tall, lifted truck or a lowrider that’s dragging on the ground—people like to push the looks to an extreme, and that’s what’s mostly going on here. In a more practical sense, riders push their visors way up to accommodate goggle storage or a GoPro camera. To properly adjust your visor, move it just high enough to be out of your field of vision. That way, you get the benefit of the visor (keeping the sun out of your eyes and off your face) without obstructing your vision. In extreme cases like riding into the sun or in rain, you’ll want to push it down for maximum protection. If you just want arguably maximum style points and attitude, push it all the way up. However, keep in mind that the high-visor thing doesn’t play as well with all helmets as it does with the Kona rider’s POC.
PROTECTION OR NO PROTECTION?
Q: I’ve noticed in the last few issues a few riders in your bike tests are not wearing gloves. Is there any significant advantage or disadvantage?
A: In most cases it comes down to rider preference. Some riders claim they have a better feel for the bike. We, however, promote anything that allows you to keep riding, and if your palms are torn up, it could put you on a ride hiatus, and who wants that?! Nowadays, different gear companies make really lightweight, thin gloves, and if you’re seeking more feel, then we recommend checking those out. If you’re seeking ultimate protection, don’t be afraid to check out actual motocross gloves from brands like Troy Lee Designs, Fasthouse and 100%.
NEW OR USED?
Q: I’m looking into purchasing a used e-bike, but I’m not sure what to look for. Is mileage on the bike the main concern? Any suggestions?
A: There are a few things to consider. Mileage is definitely a concern, but taking a good look at the bike you’re considering comes in two parts. First, you’ll want to inspect the bike and look it over really well. Check for any signs of crashes, take it for a test ride, see how it shifts, and, if you can, check the frame for any cracks and measure the chain for wear with a chain-life checker tool. Get an idea of what kind of miles have been put on the bike—easy or hard? If the chain is near the end of its life, it means the whole drivetrain might need replacing. That will be a few hundred dollars right there and worth negotiating over. The second part is to get a feel for who you’re buying from and maybe ask questions about what kind of riding they did with the bike, how extreme or not extreme they were with it.
Batteries are expensive, so we suggest getting a diagnostic reading on the e-bike you’re thinking of buying. This can be done at a dealership and will tell you how many life cycles the battery has been through. Most companies claim you can get somewhere around a thousand cycles out of a battery. Often batteries will keep working past the suggested life cycles but won’t hold a charge like they did when they were new. You could compare it to a cell phone battery; after a couple of years, it starts to not hold battery life as long.
If you find a bike with low miles and it’s a good deal, definitely consider it,but be aware of what the market values are. Make sure to look at the components you’re getting for what you’re paying for and compare that to what a new bike would cost if a new bike is an option in what you’re looking for. The supply of bikes in general has been low and could be for a minute, so if you find an older model in good shape, it could be wise to grab it if you’re really itching to ride. The supply has been low and could be like this for a while, so if you find an older model in good shape, it
could be wise to grab it if you’re really itching to ride sooner rather than later.
If you have any tech-related questions about the e-bike you currently own or are thinking of
buying one, feel free to send your query to [email protected]