Tuesday, 30 October 2012

Pedal power.

Here's an interesting discovery:
e.bike + dodgy electrics = getting stranded.
The definition of stupidity?
Yup. Getting stranded twice. Fortunately fairly close to home.
I like to think I was giving the e.bike the benefit of the doubt rather than blindly ignoring its obvious ill health. OK so the battery charge level indicator lights stopped working. It still appeared to be charging didn't it? At the merest hint of pressure on the pedals it still shot off into the distance with me grinning inanely and blithely ignoring the niggle of concern that poked  at the edges of my mind. The motor only stopped producing 'power assist' once or twice. Then two or three times. Then half a dozen. But after a short rest it always came back on. Until it didn't.
And not getting  the 'power assist' from the motor rapidly transformed my inane grin to something of an agonized grimace while the niggle flared and screeched ' I told you so!' and my back pain flared and I just screeched. Those naughty words and that blue air were nothing to do with me.
So the outcome is that I'm sad to announce the demise of the e.bike. Cue rending of garments and hysterical sobbing. A downward spiral of grief and too much wine. Hangovers.
Well it's not really dead, it's just become unreliable. I may sound heartless but to my way of thinking dead is far preferable to unreliable when it comes to gadgets.  If I was able to pedal a normal bike it wouldn't be a problem. I'd simply slip it into an easy gear and cycle home. But if I was able to pedal a normal bike I wouldn't need the e.bike. Enough said.
I could moan on about the difficulties of trying to regain some semblance of my pre-April limited mobilty level but that would be boring and anyway it's looking like that's not going to happen so I was a tad distressed at the e.bike's failure. Gone was my new found freedom. I mourned. Fretted. And found myself perusing the e.bikes on the internet. All the time. Personally I think it's understandable but I definitely heard comments about OCD on the rare occasion that I showed visitors the one that had taken my fancy. I patiently explained that research was important.Over and over again.
Being a sensible sort I worked out my finances and decided that if I saved hard I'd be able to afford to buy a new e.bike in the spring or early summer of 2013. Really it's not my fault that my pain killers are strong. (That's my handy excuse anyway.) I don't know what came over me. I've tried to feel some good old Catholic guilt but nope. There's nothing along those lines going on.
Anyway a couple of days ago a big box arrived.
Tess -  That damned postman has got in again. I think he's actually inside this box.
        I'm going to wait here until he comes out and then I'm going to eat him.

                                                     And look what I've got!

My Dearly Beloved is as much to blame as the drugs. Slightly over half the price to be exact. It seems he'd rather lend me the money than tolerate my 'obsessive' behaviour until I'd saved it myself. He does exaggerate. I only mentioned it once or twice. But he arrived and kindly pumped up the tyres to an astounding 60psi as per The Instructions. As he pointed out the rear mounted battery is heavy and 'when you add your weight..er...'  at this point he very sensibly shut up and concentrated on assembling the seat ' It's nice and wide...er...' and the handlebars. He refrained from commenting further. I've no idea why. At this point we ran out of time and he cruelly insisted that I promise not to touch it until he can return. Honestly, it only needs the pedals. And a little wiring connection.What could I get wrong? But no. I promised. I'll have a go at most things but I'm a bit scared of wiring. And I really can't afford to muck this bike up. From both an emotional and financial point of view. Freedom is too precious to be impatient with. And anyway I'd probably wire it so I electrocuted myself or the motor wouldn't stop and a whole montage of potential high speed disasters has played through my mind.
So there it sits in the living room. I've taken to watching it instead of the telly. Dreaming of journeys to come.
Suffice to say the inane grin is back.


  1. Woohoo! Now that calls for a celebration! It looks just fab and next time I'm down we can go riding together. Can't wait... well actually, I lie... I can wait. Preferably until this soggy, cold weather is past.
    Btw, the guy I bought mine from told me to fully charge the battery, then run it down totally (that took ages!) and then just to keep it topped up, which should help with battery life. He said the worst thing is in the winter to leave the battery to drain, so once a month to make sure it's fully charged. I'm sure you knew all that from your research, but just as I was pretty sure you knew yours was on it's last legs and didn't seem to really take notice, I thought I'd just let you know! xx

    1. We'll be waiting for that week of sunshine we occasionally get in April Vee! I've got a guide for the battery maintenance which I'll be following to the letter. I knew the old bike had an intermittent fault when I got it, (the seller was completely upfront) but it certainly did it's job for long enough for me to know it's worth spending on a good one. And it's still usable as a normal bike for my non-e.bike visitors to use.

  2. I love parcels - especially big ones - and your new bike looks fab. Have fun!

    1. I'll certainly try Karen - if it ever stops raining!

  3. Now that is some bike!.....You have got to be a serious biker to get one of those. i have to take my hat off to you!BTW, love the new title and header!

    1. I was always a walker rather than a biker Cheyenne but needs must and this allows me to get out and about for quite a distance.
      Glad you like the header - that was the day it didn't rain :-)