Re: Trying to make informed decisions for my first MB
I've been riding bikes for 45 years (I'm 51) and I've owned over 25 bikes. I can understand not wanting to spend a lot of money.
If you go with a Wal-Mart bike.....it is what it is. In the end, you're gonna spend more then what the bike is worth on replacing parts over the first year-but if that's all you can afford....that's all you can afford.
As far as the kit? I'd go with the That's Dax friction drive kit and the GT50R motor they sell. Yeah, it will cost you close to 350 bucks all in for the motor and the kit....but you will be able to put it on another bike in about 20 minutes if you are handy with tool.
If you look into most of the in-frame mounted motors- they use what's called a "rag joint" to attach the rear sprocket to the rear wheel. In my opinion....that's some janky engineering that's only gonna cause you problems. You can buy adapters that get around this issue- but if you are on a budget- the adapter might not fit the second bike (or third bike) you might happen to buy down the road.
It's gonna be a pain to change a rear flat, it's gonna destroy the rear spokes over the course of a year unless you get it installed absolutely perfectly.
Advantages of friction drive........
You can easily disengage the friction drive completely and use your bike as a bike.
The friction drive kits use a centrifugal clutch, so there is no clutch to worry about.
It will fit about 90% of bikes made-it will easily swap out to the second (and nicer) bike you're gonna be eventually buying if you get sucked in.
My Dax kit will hit 35 mph no problem. I am typically quite content to putt along at 20 mph...but it's nice having the extra power in reserve to climb hills.
One downside- the friction drive kits absolutely suck in wet weather...they are basically unusable when it's wet out. That's not a concern for me as I am a fair weather rider.
And dealing with Duane at ThatsDax-the dude is 100% focused on making sure you are happy with what you buy-if you have any questions...his personal phone number is right on the front page of his website.
His website is advertised on the right hand side of the message board :-)
If some's good...more is better and too much ain't enough.