50 miler capable?


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2:32 PM
Jul 19, 2020
I want to build up.something that friends and family can use to do urban rides with. Most of th folks I have in mind will not be skilled enough for much off road but I have access to a pretty awesome network of paved paths and bike lanes but with a bit of curbs, gravel, etc mixes in.

I'm thing a hardtail with front suspension and water bottle capacity.

Can I build something that can keep up with a pretty fit rider for 3-4 hours at an average pace of maybe 18mph?
Do you really have an 18mph moving pace on city paths? The reason I ask is that when I'm riding around local paths even if I'm approaching my bikes limit of 20mph, my actual average moving speed is only around 14-15mph when stops and short breaks are accounted for (based on my phone app data).

If you're averaging 18mph you'd have to have a regular moving pace around 25mph. The battery to sustain that average would have to approach a whole kw of power (most are 400-600w). Keeping a bike moving above 20mph starts to require exponentially more power than below.
Yeah, bike path average is closer to 16 according Strava. 18 would be a fast group ride.

So, 16 mph for 3 hours is desired. If that is not realistic, I can shorten the route.
An average rider that isn't pushing a very big gear will be averaging 15-20 wh/mi. So if you want to go 48 miles at 16mph you would be looking at around a 700wh or more battery capacity and a 500w bike preferably 48v.

But it is possible as evidenced by this trip I recently took on a pavement section:

ebike speedo mileage.jpg

I tend to get bored on the pave though after not too long and veer off on to more interesting terrain. All legal eagle of course and how extreme can you get on drop bars anyway? I average about 30 miles per ride. Sometimes it takes 1.5 hrs and sometimes it takes 3, it just depends on how much me time I have.
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It's all about battery size for long range. Don't know your budget, but if $3K isn't too much take a close look at the Raleigh Misceo iE with Shimano STepS electric shifting and automatic downshift to the gear of your choice when you come to a stop. Sweet and easy to ride. I've heard of female riders setting these up as a road bike and riding with their husbands in hilly areas without lagging behind. This eBike is firm, rigid and light by eBike standards. Very well equipped off the shelf. Carbon fork can be swapped out for suspension fork if desired, but not really needed for paved bike trail use. Good luck!