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Electric Bikes 101

Written by Jerry on . Posted in Uncategorized

This article 1st appeeared in the March 2015 issue of the Ashland LocalsGuide

Electric Bicycles 101

Winter has been mostly a no-show this year and everyday it becomes easier and easier to shift into a bicycle riding mindset. Ashland is a great place to ride a bike. If only we didn’t have so many pesky hills to climb, right? Depending on where you live, a ride to the grocery store and back can be a mini-epic workout. If you’re up to the task and you have the time, I salute you. However, if you’re like many of us, you do all your around town traveling by car and your bike is reserved for the occasional weekend pleasure/exercise ride. What if there was a way to bridge the gap between these two scenarios? Enter the electric bike!

commuting on country road

E-bikes ride and function like regular bicycles with the addition of an electric motor and battery to provide assistance in propelling you forward. The electrical components provide power equal to that of another able-bodied adult helping you pedal. Hills seem to flatten out before you and miles slip by easily. Your bicycle elevates from the level of recreational equipment to alternative transportation. Now you can run the majority of your around town errands on a bike, enjoying all the benefits of open air, smell-the-roses travel without the hot and sweaty, exhausted-at-the-end-of-the-ride outcome.

Yuba Mundo with 2 kids on back 2

You still need to pedal to navigate Ashland’s varied terrain but it can take a fraction of the effort that a non-electric bike requires. (Remember the virtual-able-bodied adult sitting behind you helping with the work?) So now you can get as much exercise as you desire or as much assistance as you need depending on the situation. You have complete control over the amount of power that the motor delivers. Imagine running across town to Shop’n Kart in the morning, meeting a friend downtown for lunch, and then zooming out once more in the afternoon on another errand. After all this you still have the energy to go out dancing in the evening. This is what e-biking is all about!

Lifestyle-5-sm

E-bikes are easy to ride, they don’t require a driver’s license, and in a town like Ashland you can make most trips as quickly or faster than you can with your car. Traffic snarls and parking woes no longer affect you. E-bikes operate on just a few cents worth of electricity each day and they don’t require any special maintenance beyond that of a standard bike. If you compute the savings in gas purchases over time, the payback period for the cost of an e-bike is surprisingly short. I hope I’ve piqued your curiosity about e-bikes in general. If so, I invite you to come by the shop, see all the bikes, and take a few test rides. In my world a single ride is worth ten thousand words. Come ride the future…its here now!

Bicycling Around Redding, California

Written by Jerry on . Posted in Uncategorized

I’ve heard stories for years about the bike trails in and around Redding, CA. I finally got down there this month to explore and discover for myself what the area has to offer. I’m happy to report that it was well worth the drive (about 2.5 hours from Ashland). The centerpiece, as it were, for the myriad trails would be the Sundial Bridge. Its an architectural marvel that provides pedestrians and cyclists access to the north side of the Sacramento River.

                      Sundial Bridge - Redding - California 2                     Sundial Bridge - Redding - California 8

The bridge is located within the Turtle Bay Park and Museum complex. Adjoining it is the Civic Auditorium and Convention Center. I believe its Sheraton-Hilton that has plans to add yet another large facility next door. Its a wonderful place to check out and perhaps spend an entire day wandering, picnicing, visiting the museum, visitor center, and coffee shop. I enjoyed a hot drink and the wi-fi access as the sun set on the 2nd day of my visit.

                         Sundial Bridge - Redding - California 9         Sundial Bridge - Redding - California 7         Sundial Bridge - Redding - California 6

Running along both sides of the Sacramento River is a smooth paved trail that heads west and links up with a myriad of other paved and dirt trails. I stayed on the north shore of the river and continued along the paved route that took me all the way north to the Shasta Dam. My total ride round trip from the parking lot at the Diestelhorst Bridge ( just west of the Sundial Bridge) was 30+ miles.

Diestelhorst Bridge - Redding - California   Sacramento River Trail - Redding - California 1

It was a beautiful ride that alternated between following the river valley floor and climbing up onto the hillsides to enjoy huge vistas of the surrounding region. Occasionally I even caught a glimpse of the southern flanks of our neighbor, Mt. Shasta.

                   Shasta Lake, Redding, CA  Scramento River Trail Tunnel, Redding, CA 1  Shasta Dam, Redding, CA 3

Next time I’ll bring a trail bike and explore some of the many off-road opportunities along trails with names such as Westside, Salt Creek, Hornbeck, FB, and Buenaventura. The options seem virtually endless. The folks who live in and around Redding, CA are fortunate to have so much quality rural riding available just at the edge of town. The advent of electric bikes opens the door to these treasures even wider.

Bike Rack, Redding, CA

So, the next time you’re itching for a change of scenery or are looking for warmer temperatures than Ashland is serving up, consider a multi-day adventure just south of the border to Redding, California. The trails are ‘ready for you in Redding’ and they promise to satisfy!

Sundial Bridge - Redding - California 5

 

New Yuba Cargo Bikes Have Arrived!

Written by Jerry on . Posted in Uncategorized

Yuba Boda Boda green step through electric bike 1

Its an exciting time at Ashland Electric Bikes. We’ve got the new space dialed in so we can work more efficiently, the unusually warm weather is keeping us busier than usual for late January, and new bikes are arriving almost every week. Recently we received a couple of cargo bikes from Yuba. We’ve got a green step through electric Boda Boda and a special blue soon-to-be El Mundo.

Yuba Boda Boda green step through electric bike 3

Its exciting to get the newest version of a bike from a superlative company like Yuba because they’re always making improvements in their ongoing effort to produce the best bikes available. In the case of these two bikes I’ve found positive design tweaks to the wheelskirts, higher quality handgrips, and an even finer fit and finish on the painted components. Its great to offer the best!

Yuba Mundo blue custom build 1

 

Yuba Mundo blue custom build 2

 

 

 

 

 

What will make this El Mundo special is that Yuba doesn’t offer the blue in an electric version. So, we’re building one from scratch, adding the Bionx electric drive system, and upgrading to Avid BB7 disc brakes. When its completed this will be the finest long tail electric cargo currently available in the region. Give us a few more days and then come see for yourself!

Catrike Road Tadpole Trike w/ Bionx Electric Drive

Written by Jerry on . Posted in Uncategorized

Once in a while something distinctive and far out of the usual program comes along here in the shop that bears mentioning. This particular bike is one of those rarities. The bike is a nearly new Catrike Road model in impeccable condition. It sports a Shimano Deore LX 18 speed drive train with bar end shifters, Avid BB7 disc brakes and Schwalbe Marathon Racer tires all around. We’ve added a brand new Bionx 48 volt electric motor system that has turned this rig into a veritable rocket-ship-on-wheels!

Cattrike-Bionx conversion system

If purchased new, all this fine equipment would be priced at $4,000. The owner is very highly motivated to sell it sooner than later. (His agreement with the wife is to sell a bike before buying another and right now he’s one bike short of compliance with that accord.) So, one lucky new owner will ride away with this setup for only $2999! The Bionx kit is fully warranteed as new product. The soundness of the rest of the bike speaks for itself upon close inspection. Is there a lightning fast tadpole trike in your near future?!

Time To Tune Up

Written by Jerry on . Posted in Uncategorized

This article 1st appeared in the February edition of the Ashland LocalsGuide

We’re lucky enough to be able to ride year ’round in Ashland due to the mild winters here. Many of you may not agree with that assessment but trust me, after spending decades in the high country of Montana and Colorado, winter in southern Oregon is a piece of cake! Nevertheless, I know many of you have your bikes in temporary storage while awaiting warmer days. Now is the perfect time to consider a pre-season tune-up to assure that you’re safe and ready to go once the temps reach your comfort zone.

new shop interior 3

Even the most expensive of bikes, whether standard or electric, experience component wear and require periodic maintenance to keep them running smoothly. This will also prevent more costly repairs down the road. Every bike should, at minimum, have a general tune-up performed on it once a year. Items to be addressed include: inspect and adjust brakes, gears, cables, headset, hubs, bottom bracket, and wheel spokes. Tire pressure and tread condition, as well as all major bolt tightness should be checked. Chain wear is a key item to be checked; replacing a worn chain is far less expensive than waiting until it wears all the gears as well. Following these guidelines will assure that your first ride of the new season will be safe and secure.

accessory wall 1

 

Now can also be a great time to invest in any accessories that you’ve been considering to make your riding experience more pleasurable and effective. Baskets, bags, fenders, horns, cell phone holders; all these items can take your riding to the next level.

How about your helmet; is it comfortable and you use it or does it sit at home while you venture into the world unprotected? There’s nothing pretty about a head injury. On that note, if appearances are a primary deterrent to you wearing a helmet, please come see the stylish helmet covers we offer to help you present a more fashionable appearance while you protect the only head you’ll ever have in this lifetime.

accessory wall - helmets

OK, now you know what it takes to stay ahead of the curve before the upcoming warm weather riding season. Make an appointment to get your bike in tip top shape now and avoid the rush when everybody else is scrambling to get their bike serviced in a few months from now. Who knows; you may even find yourself adding a few months to your usual riding season, and that’s a good thing for us all.

Testimonials

My husband has bad knees which prevented him from bike riding with me, so we decided to get him an electric bike. Jerry was very knowledgeable, helping us pick the one that would work best for his needs.... Read More

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Ashland Electric Bikes is located at 1678 Ashland St. in Ashland. Get directions.
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