A hundred miles.

I took a trip to the dollar store with D&L this morning, and before I even went home to put the groceries away I took the bike out for the specific purpose of taking this picture…

We’ve crossed a hundred miles. And all in all I’m delighted with the bike, which in this environment I really wasn’t expecting to be. I had serious questions about how useful it would be, but I was wrong not as right as I usually am.

One small technical problem: A week or two ago the front tire went flat for no apparent reason (seriously the tube is still holding air) and unable to find any explanation I replaced the tube with my one-and-only spare. Apparently with fat tires it’s important to make sure you get the tire bead even on the wheel before fully inflating, which I don’t recall ever having any problem with on any conventional bike*. But after re-inflating the tire and replacing the wheel on the bike there was a definite bobbing sensation, and looking down as the front wheel rotated it wasn’t hard to see why: One part of the bead was seated more deeply than the rest.

So I took the front wheel off, which is very simple and easy (note to self: practice removing and replacing the rear wheel), deflated it, and fiddled with the bead until it appeared even all the way around. Took it out to the Jeep to inflate it with the Jeep’s air compressor because doing it with a hand pump is a really time-consuming and strenuous bore. Looks right now, we’ll see in the next couple of days whether it is right.

Big Brother, bless his heart, heard about the “mystery flat” and promptly sent me two more spare tubes.

I was just as happy to take the compressor out of the Jeep because then it was time for the next scheduled chore…

The bag in which I keep the Jeep kit is only two years old but recently the zipper has begun to fail. Last weekend it failed big-time and I ended up opening the bag by just ripping it open, pretty much obviating any possibility of getting it back together. Since the Jeep kit is important and often used – and in an extremely dusty environment – the situation called for immediate replacement.

I debated about getting the next bigger size bag, because this sort of thing can get out of hand and there’s only so much room in the back of the Jeep. But the old bag did kind of strain its seams a bit which might have caused the zipper failure. The new one is much taller but not much bigger around and will be fine – and maybe more long-lived – as long as I don’t find excuses to fill up the empty space.

*or any automotive tire for that matter, and I started out in a tire shop and have mounted many hundreds of tires. But these fat bike tires are a different breed of cat.

About Joel

You shouldn't ask these questions of a paranoid recluse, you know.
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6 Responses to A hundred miles.

  1. Mike says:

    From a purely self-centered perspective, I’m glad you are happy with the bike. I’ve contemplated getting an e-bike in the past but from what I’ve seen of others, they have been a waste of money. Seeing what you’re putting yours through and how happy you are with it has changed my mind to the positive. Now all I want to see is how getting it back on the road after winter goes. If that turns out as well as I hope I’ll get one of these bikes next spring. Thanks for posting this, Joel.

  2. Sendarius says:

    Your dilemma about getting the next size up bag echoes my own problem with range bags.

    Simply put: the larger the range bag, the more useless stuff you believe you need to carry.

    When I tore a handle off the most often used range bag, I simply stopped taking it to matches until it was repaired. That was five years ago. In the years since, I have never needed something from that bag while at the range. It sits in my gun room, still fully packed.

    Just as always, I still carry my competition pistol (probably illegally) in a re-purposed camera hard case with magazines, ammunition, eye-pro, ear-pro, sun-screen, insect repellent, gun oil, and a small kit of tools.

    When combined with the clothes I am already wearing, a cap, a drink bottle, and my belt and holster, that is all I have ever needed.

  3. Spud says:

    So , have you figured out the max range of it yet ?

  4. Joel says:

    Of the bike? 20 miles absolute minimum, and there are ways to manage the power usage that weren’t immediately clear to me so I’d be fairly confident taking it as far as 30 – though doing that without incremental testing probably wouldn’t be the smartest possible course.

  5. Ben says:

    I will be greatly interested in your 1000-mile review, and hopefully many beyond that. Any really useful commuter machine should be barely broken in at 1000 miles, so durability should be a prime consideration, but your typical Internet e-bike review only covers a few days use of a brand new bike.

  6. Paul Joat says:

    Ben I would guess the big issue long term will be battery capacity, most lithium cells advertise something in the range of 80% of original capacity after 500 charge cycles. The other thing I could see as an issue is bearings and chain with the desert dust that is a question of how well sealed they are but they should be realitively easy to replace.

To the stake with the heretic!