riding a motorized bike in the street / bike lane?

Discussion in 'Motorized Bicycle General Discussion' started by amills22, Jun 17, 2013.

  1. amills22

    amills22 New Member

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    Hey all

    I recently got a 52 columbia cruiser, and recently moved to nyc. It's a bit slow for general commuting, but I love the bike too much to stop riding it.

    I really want to put a motor on it and use it as a commuter bike to get to work faster etc BUT I am not sure if i'd be allowed to ride it on the street with the motor. Does anyone have any clue to the rules regarding this? I don't think it'd qualify as a moped or scooter. Not sure if i'd be able to use the bike lane anymore. I know it wont go super fast so that would probably be ok.

    Any help would be great,

    thanks

    amy
     
  2. Desert Rat

    Desert Rat New Member

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    I would contact your local DMV, ask them and get it in writing if you can.
    they are real quick to give advice but don't want to stand behind it LOL
    don't you love our Government?
     
  3. Mr. Minecraft

    Mr. Minecraft Visionary

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    The law for most cities is: You can ride it in the street if the speed limit is 25mph or under, and if the speed limit is higher that 25mph, there needs to be a bike lane. Sidewalks are prohibited, and you cant park it in a way that disrupts foot traffic. I will try to find more info for you in the mean time.

    Edit: Wow, New York is MUCH more strict on this topic than California. Here is what I found on the NY DMV website:


    You cannot register any of the motorized devices from the list below in NYS. You cannot operate these devices on sidewalks, public streets or highways in NYS. These devices are motor vehicles, but they do not have the correct equipment or design for operation on roadways.

    Motorized Scooter - a device with a motor attached and a handlebar for a standing rider. An example of a motorized scooter is the device called the Go-ped®.

    Mini-bike - a small, motorized device with two wheels and created for off-road use. A mini-bike does not qualify as a moped, a motorcycle or an ATV.
    Dirt Bike - a motorized device like a motorcycle, but created for and used for off-road use. Some "dirt bikes" qualify as an ATV. These vehicles can register and operate off-road as an ATV.

    Go-Kart - a small, motorized device with four wheels, created for off-road use. You cannot register a go-kart as a motor vehicle or ATV because a go-kart does not have the same equipment.

    Motor-assisted Bicycle - a bicycle to which a small motor is attached. A motor-assisted bicycle does not qualify for a registration as a motorcycle, moped or ATV and does not have the same equipment.

    These devices are not allowed on any street, highway, parking lot, sidewalk or other area that allows public motor vehicle traffic. You are subject to arrest if you operate one of these motorized vehicles and do not have a registration, driver license, inspection, insurance or correct equipment. The DMV can not provide any information about operation of these devices on private property. Contact the local authorities and property owners.


    If I were you I would build it anyways as most police don't mind them if you ride responsibly and safely. This is just my opinion though, as I am used to the lenient cops in my town.


    Do what you think is good for you,
    -Christopher
     
    #3 Mr. Minecraft, Jun 17, 2013
    Last edited: Jun 17, 2013
  4. Kioshk

    Kioshk Active Member

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    Welcome Amy,

    Motorized bikes are not legal to operate in NY State; and I suspect that NYC laws could be even more restrictive. I know that the PD has been cracking down on food-delivery people on these bikes because they've proven themselves to be dangeous nusences. I have been zipping around Long Island for about a year now, and the Suffolk Police have been very cool with me; no problems at all. I DID get pulled over once for blowing a red-light. The cop just gave me a tounge-lashing and told me "...and be careful on whatever the h.e.l.l that thing is!". My advice is that if you DO go the motorized route, deck the bike out in lights and reflectors. Be sure to have a working bell or horn, wear a helmet, and bright clothing. Be consciencious of pedestrians and vehichles...ride like you're invisible. Keep it under 20MPH in populous areas. Follow the traffic laws. Stay off the sidewalks, and expect some die-hard cyclists to express resentment if you come upon them in the bike-lanes. One thing I make sure to do is MAKE EYE-CONTACT with anyone in you surrondings...and smile & nod a lot: you'll get WAY more smiles than frowns, trust me.
     
  5. Greybeard

    Greybeard New Member

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    NYC just outlawed e bikes, so I for sure would want to check local law, and get it in writing.
    Our local cops say, "don't ride in bike lanes, wear a DOT helmet, and observe traffic laws, and they won't bother us."
     
  6. Master-shake

    Master-shake New Member

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    I'm gonna agree with kioshk there on most of it. If there is one thing that cops hate it is people that are being reckless with speed. Even with a bike, I've see some of those New York bikers and if you did that type of riding in Texas you woud get run over or fined heavily.

    I ride on sidewalks, I know technically your not supposed to but off of Texas tech campus if your dumb enough to get on the road (35-55mph) your going to have all kinds of people honking and flipping you off. So I just keep to a respectable light pedal speed 10-15 on the sidewalk and if I have to pass someone I drop it down to like walking speed and smile.

    I may be risking a bike on sidewalk ticket but it's better than risking death on the motorways around here.
     
  7. Dan

    Dan Staff
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    Kiosk is right, Google NYC and motorized bicycles. Not good news. They are even after ebikes.

    This comes up a lot. Laws and local regulations. It is so important to research it and not trust folks online. People trying to sell you stuff will say one thing and well meaning folks (such as me) will tell you another. It is to the best of all of our knowledge, but better to really know. Go str8 to the horse's mouth to be sure.

    Funny thing about our thing, I live in CT and can go any speed as long as it is posted and less then 5HP. NY and NYC is tuff though. But God love em, a NYC cop will not bother you unless you get em angry. Then your *scurid*, lol

    A Manhattanite friend of mine asked about em recently. I suggested a low profile ebike. Fit on the elevator, no gas fumes and looked like a regular bicycle.

    Not that I am suggesting that to you. Just what I told him.
     
  8. Dan

    Dan Staff
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    Opps, sorry GreyBeard and Shake. I missed you'r posts.
     
  9. Kioshk

    Kioshk Active Member

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    Dan, WRT elevators and Connecticut...yes, there IS a connection! I take the Bridgeport/Port Jeff ferry often. They only charge me as a walk-on, and I suppose I've become somewhat of a character down on the docks: they all recognize me happily as "that guy with the motorized bike". Well, a couple of weeks ago, there was what I think was a relief crew. No one knew me, and when I placed my bike in my normally assigned spot (under a stairwell on the car deck), I was approached by a very officious gentleman in a white shirt and what looked like an officer's cap.

    "Is there gasoline in that tank?"

    "Why, yes sir. Yes there is."

    "We'll, you can't keep it on the car-deck...you'll need to bring it with you to the aft-upper deck."

    "Um...OK. In the elevator?"

    "Yes."

    "Uhhhhh...alright..."

    This on-board elevator was just tiny enough that after I finagled it in, my cheapo BELL rear-view mirror snapped off when the elevator door closed. That got me P'ed to the O.

    So, of course you knew where my head was: there are 50 vehicles with about 10 gallons of fuel each on this deck, and you want me to evacuate my 0.3 gallons for "safty concerns"? On top of that, you want me to transport this volite liquid on a public ELEVATOR?!? If there isn't a Federal law against that, I'm pretty damn sure there's a Meritime law against it.

    OK, vented; thanks for bearing with me.
     
    #9 Kioshk, Jun 17, 2013
    Last edited: Jun 17, 2013
  10. Nashville Kat

    Nashville Kat Active Member

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    It's all about selling gasoline constantly people.
    And then sometimes about local juridictions and fees.
     
  11. Dan

    Dan Staff
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    LOL, vent Brother, vent!

    In my younger yrs, I worked for their competition. Not saying any thing for any of them, but the lawyers involved would blow your mind. No kidding, it got insane. The joke on deck was (every time some one drove into a bulkhead) "Hey! you scratched my boat!. ..and later, they sued

    Swear to good, true story. I was directing cars on deck. An elderly woman was walking onboard. She trips over the only rise in the deck in 40 square yards. (IT WAS LIKE SHE AIMED FOR IT!, SNORK) So she hurt her knee. ( was there. She did face plant but not one of her knees hit the deck)

    So she sues what ever and wins.

    Wait Kioshk, this is the funny part. Her husband sued for (and I am not making this up) "alienation of affection" She got 32K for a slip and fall and he got $8K for not having to sleep with a truly hard to look at woman.


    insert all the jokes here, I am not allowed to...... snork
     
  12. Dan

    Dan Staff
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    ..before she got hit in the face by tripping. On to her face. She was a not fun to look at person.

    Really, really fugly.
     
  13. amills22

    amills22 New Member

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    haha yes, I agree. Though it seems nyc cops have a lot more to worry about than a bike. BUT you never know.
     
  14. amills22

    amills22 New Member

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    Thanks all for the thoughts. I've seen a lot of delivery guys around on E bikes, and they seem ok? I've ridden past cops on the sidewalk so I'm not sure they give a crap about bikes.

    I also feel like it would be less of a big deal riding in brooklyn as opposed to manhattan. I'll most likely be using it aroundn queens/brooklyn, where things are much less congested.

    Sad times if i can't do this
     
  15. Kioshk

    Kioshk Active Member

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  16. crassius

    crassius Well-Known Member

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    around here, if you want to be considered a bicycle rider & not need a license, you need to ride in the bike lane following all bike traffic rules & equipments
     
  17. Dan

    Dan Staff
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    ayup Amillis, true. I rode a motorized bicycle all over Poughkeepsie and happily smiled at every cop. I had no idea motorized bicycles were not legal in NY. Waved at everyone and the only response I got was a facial "Wut" you bother'in me over here?" from the cops, lol

    Rule of thumb and note to self; Always smile. The wronger I am, smile harder.




    http://news.google.com/newspapers?n...bhRAAAAIBAJ&sjid=zGkDAAAAIBAJ&pg=3520,4384182

    That was an awesome read K, TY!
     
    #17 Dan, Jun 18, 2013
    Last edited: Jun 18, 2013

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