|120 S. Phoenix Avenue.|
Local e-retailer and bike trailer manufacturer Bike Shop Hub celebrated their grand opening and the installation of their new sign a few weekends ago in front of their new showroom and where visitors could try out the e-bikes they are carry.
|The Bike Shop Hub showroom with oh-so-many bike bags!|
Like many bike commuters, I've been a little leery of electronic bikes, wondering "what's the point?". I assumed the electric motor would do all the work, eliminating the exercise benefit that many of us value. I wanted to test one though before I formed a firm opinion about the likelihood of ever owning one.
Another Flagstaff company, Motor Excellence, recently started manufacturing bike motors locally and is exporting them all over the world. It would be nice to see two local businesses succeed with this innovation in bicycles, especially if one of the results is to see more people accepting bicycles as a transportation option.
In Flagstaff, the high elevation, hilly streets and wind combine as a significant barrier to regular bike commuting for many people. Lately, the wind has been unusually strong, often over 30 mph, sometimes adding 10 - 20 minutes to my trips. For the most part I just plan for this and role with it but not everyone is will to or can be that flexible with their time.
After testing an A2B Velociti24 and an Ohm XU700, I realized the motor does not do all the work for you. The rider still has to pedal but it does give the a boost. That's it, just a boost to get you up a hill or long incline, making a long hilly route or pedaling into strong winds much more feasible.