Suddenly Bolt-On Motors


by Byron on Oct 22, 2013 at 6:22 AM


4 years after lighting up the switches at all the design blogs, the Copenhagen Wheel is coming to market and another wheel that looks just like it

In the span of a week, an electric motor for a bike that resembles the Copenhagen Wheel AND the Copenhagen Wheel funded. FlyKly got their money from the crowd and the CW from investors. A few years ago, I posted on the CW for the industrial design, the concept, and talked about it in presentations. Didn’t think it’d ever make it to market or if so, as a complete bike. Cause if you bolt 9 - 12 lbs of anything on your bike, it’s gonna effect handling; especially, if it’s a “fixie” with a short wheelbase and made to corner on a track without an extra 9 lbs of horsepower hanging off it.

Then you’re a slave to the recharge cycle, just like your lights. Better make sure you charge it in before your big meeting at work and the ride home.

These moves in the market remind me of Microsoft’s decade of attempts at a tablet, before that, MIDS, and then Apple made a breakthrough product and then the Surface. There’s plenty of existing ebikes on the market that aren’t moving the needle (and tablets getting written off). Last week, when an eBike made the point of buzzing me across the Swing Bridge to West Seattle, I thought…

When you have a motor on your bike, what’s that make you? A motorist.

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Sounds like a guy who doesn’t feel he has a need for an eBike and feels the need to belittle anyone who does. And now has the audacity to half assed review something he has absolutely no desire for anyway and so seeks to subduct its success at every turn and with extreme prejudice. Asinine.

We around the DC metropolitan area like to call these people, “stuck up elitist pricks”.

Who sounds like what? Me? What’s too review? A bolt-on regenerative motor that reportedly goes 20 mph and has a range of 15 miles for a fixie? It’s not on the market yet and has been vaporware for 4 years. We talked the Copenhagen Wheel at length and have owned eBikes, including a Stokemonkey-powered cargo bike, also reviewed and recommended the Specialized Turbo.

Around here in Seattle we call these commenters, ill-informed idiots. Ride an bike, sure, but these bolt-on projects deserve far more criticism and skepticism than what we posted here.