complete newbie to motored bicycles

Discussion in 'Motorized Bicycle General Discussion' started by fatllama, Oct 5, 2011.

  1. fatllama

    fatllama New Member

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    Hi all,
    Joined this forum because I'm thinking of motorizing my bike. The cost of commuting by car is far too expensive. Though I sometimes ride a couple miles on my bike when I need to get something nearby, I'm a track athlete and usually I'm far too tired to go across the city on a regular basis by bike.
    I'm not at all interested in speed or gizmos, just want a reliable kit that's easy to set up and will get me that awesome advertised gas mileage.
    I was looking at motovelo.us, but now I'm not so sure since they say on their website that it's completely street legal to ride one of their bikes. Having looked into the laws, I've learned that I need an M2 license along with other things in order to ride legally. So I'm not very sure if I want to buy from them if they're spreading false advertising.
    Any suggestions?
    Thanks!

    Ben
     
  2. DuctTapedGoat

    DuctTapedGoat Active Member

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    To start - don't expect 120 MPG. Myself, I get around 65 - 70. I could get this up to 80 - 90 were I to 100% of the time be pedaling along side the motor, but on a 40 mile trip that is unreasonable - though understandable.

    Based on the season, you might want to wait until winter to get your first motor - most online retailers lower the prices in the off season to increase winter sales.

    For other retailers, I would recommend you check out the sponsors on the left and right sides of this forum (you'll notice MotoVelo is not one of them).

    As far as a brand name of motor, I always recommend Raw brand motors, as they have a great reputation which I can attest to through my own personal experience.

    As far as laws, I suggest you use the search function at the top of the page. There are MANY Cali riders on this forum, and it's a topic on which I'm sure has been thoroughly hashed over.

    The biggest tips I can offer you are these - expect to spend about 200 -300 bucks in aftermarket parts if you want a daily driver out of your motorized bike. The most common are aftermarket carburetors/modifying carburetors and intakes, and replacing the stock exhaust with any form of expansion chamber. Myself personally, I recommend immediately going with an alternate rear sprocket mounting method using the disc rotor mount on a disc brake wheel. As well, most kits will need a chain upgrade to #41 or 415/415H. A very common one is a sprocket with a smaller amount of teeth, 44T is stock, and I've heard from many people, myself included that 36T is a very good replacement, though in SF area with the hills you might want to stick to the 44T. Hardware upgrades are most definitely in order, as all of the stock hardware is aluminum allthread stud bolts. You can get much of this from your local hardware store. Replacing the stock sparkplug with an aftermarket NGK plug that you select based on your climate is also crucial to proper operation. The last important upgrade is a dual pull brake lever, so that you can eliminate the left front brake lever and use both front and rear brakes off of the right lever. Maintaining brake pads is a major pain, as slowing from speeds of 30+ through the city is very taxing on them.

    There are more things than this, those are the most crucial that come to mind at this moment. These are RIDE ONCE, TUNE TWICE kits - never forget that.


    Welcome to MotorBicycling.com Ben.
     
  3. Al.Fisherman

    Al.Fisherman New Member

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  4. Dan

    Dan Staff
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    Howdy Ben, welcome.

    Should warn ya, these crazy things are addicting.
     
  5. donphantasmo

    donphantasmo New Member

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    Welcome to the forum, Ben.

    This place is a wealth of information, and what DuctTapeGoat said is %100 correct. I would personally build myself, just for the pleasure and cost effectiveness. But, a great way to go is also the already made method. I could almost even send you towards an E-bike. They're pretty efficient, but nothing can replace the vibration and noise of an internal combustion engine.

    Either way, read what people are saying in this forum, and listen to them. I had a BLAST putting my bike together, modding it, and now, it's even a bit more fun riding it, knowing I built it myself.

    Have fun, and be safe
     

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