3,400 mile ebike ride -- Your questions answered

3,400 mile ebike ride -- Your questions answered

 

 

Ride Across America Reading 3,400 mile ebike ride -- Your questions answered 4 minutes

Four months and 3,400 miles later Gregory Maassen has nearly completed his ride across America to raise money for Peripheral Neuropathy. Today he is back to answer your questions about his ride. If you would like to help Gregory reach his goal of raising $150,000 you can make a donation here. And now, here is Gregory:

Can he ride all day on one charge?
My e-bike has two batteries installed in the frame and I have one spare battery. I have a Riese Muller SuperCharger. This is a German bicycle designed for long commutes and capable of ultra-long tours like to one person cross-country e-bike tour.

Each battery is 625 Wh, so I have access to 1,875 Wh which is sufficient to e-bike 100 miles or 13,5 hours between Delta in Utah and Baker in Nevada in hilly terrain on asphalt roads in warm weather conditions and with no headwinds.

You can easily bike an entire day with just two batteries with my e-bike under normal weather conditions on asphalt roads. Gravel and mud roads and steep inclines, headwinds, consume much more electricity. The average e-bike may have a range of some 30-40 miles as most have only one battery of 400-500 Wh. Not all e-bike motors are as efficient as the one on my e-bike. If an e-bike has a throttle, the range will be significantly less if the e-bike is propelled solely by the motor. I don't have a throttle on my e-bike. I need to propel the e-bike with my legs.

This will all change once solid-state batteries become available that weigh half of lithium ion batteries and that provides twice the range. It will take a few years before we see solid-state batteries enter the consumer e-bike market. Battery range will not be a big limiting factor in the future. Currently, the price and weight of lithium ion batteries are a big limiting factor. My batteries retail for $944.50 each!

Does he camp? Motels?
I prefer to camp as it is easy to set up a tent near the e-bike. I mainly camped at KOA camping grounds as they have tent sites with electricity. I stay in hotels and motels if no camping is available. I also stay at Warmshowers hosts. I normally stay where electricity is available although I camped a few times without electricity such as at the Illipah Reservoir camping grounds near Ely in NV.

Where does he charge?
I charge the e-bike using a normal 110v outlet. I have two charges to charge the three batteries. I charge overnight. I charge at camping grounds with electricity, hotels, motels, and at people's homes when I use Warmshowers, a social network of long-distance cyclists.

What is his range?
There are many variables that determine the range of the e-bike. Wind, temperature, the type of surface of the road, inclines, my own strength, the weight of the rider and equipment, whether one tows a trailer like I do, and how much assistance I use from the motor, determine the range. Bosch has a range calculator:

https://www.bosch-ebike.com/us/service/range-calculator

I can easily e-bike 80 miles in a day with three batteries in touring mode on flat terrain and in warm weather. The outside temperature is a great factor when it comes to range. Freezing cold weather and wind can easily cut range by 40%, at least that is my experience during the cross-country e-bike tour.

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