A couple great examples of a homemade Fat eBikes. These are made with quality components, based on a Surly frames. These bikes are probably a blast to ride on the beach, in snow or just anywhere.
New exciting tire and rim combos have been released from two leaders in the Sand Bike world.
Surly , a custom bike maker has released a tire rim combo dubbed 29+ This is a 29 inch tire , aka 29er that is significantly wider than other 29″ tires currently available. The new tire is 3 inches wide.
The new 29x 3.0″ tire is called the Knard and will be available this fall. The Surly bike that comes equipped with this tire rim combo is called the Krampus and is currently available for an MSRP of $1950. Clearly this is a good candidate to convert into a Fat eBike.
From Fat Sand Bikes
These new 26 x 4.8″ wide tires from Fat Sand Bikes are simply the fattest bicycle tire money can buy. Tires are called the XXL and go for about $70
Editors of a popular Japanese bicycle magazine contacted the Fat eBike team to do a feature in “Bicycle Navi” magazine. The magazine features new technology and life style oriented bicycle products. The Giz Mag of the Japanese bicycle world if you will.
The Bicycle Navi team was exceedingly professional and well prepared. Each Monthly Magazine features a new trend from Foreign lands, German single speeds, British Fad bikes and American Fat eBikes of course!
Balance is essential when riding on sand or snow. Too much weight in front or on the rear makes the bike unstable in loose terrain. Frame bags have become a popular accessory with Fat Bikes. Electric Fat bikes – Fat eBikes as we call them also benefit from frame bags. The bike shown has a 20- 30 mile range, perfect weight balance and extra storage for personal items, making beach and city riding convenient and pleasurable.
A Fat eBike is simply a Fatbike (also know as Sandbike) that has been converted to electric drive. Currently no ready made Electric Fatbikes are on the market. To get an Electric Fatbike you must buy a Fatbike from Surley, Salsa or other manufacturer of Fatbikes and install an electric drive system. The two bikes pictures are equipped to ride on beach sand, snow or deep mud without pedaling. The extra wide tires give good traction on wet sand and allow you to ride unassisted at roughly 20 mph along the beach. The two bikes tested were built with direct drive motors hub motors. Sensorless direct drive motors are a good choice for an ebike that will be exposed to moisture.
The Orange bike with 900 watts of power was able to cruise on sand with some pedal assist while the black bike with 1800 watts of power was capable of unassisted 20 mph sand cruising. The sealed sensorless motors are very resistant to water damage, in fact they will run under (fresh) water. A longer term test will show how the motors last after repeated exposer to salt water.
People spend the extra money to buy a Titanium frame because it lighter than a standard steel or aluminum frame. At two – three times the cost of an aluminum or steel frame you are paying dearly for the weight savings. Weight savings are less important when you are building an electric bike. The battery alone could weight more than an entire standard bicycle. So why spend the extra money for aTitanium Fat eBike frame?
When you ride on the beach every part of your bike is exposed to salt spray and components start to rust immediately. Titanium is impervious to rust while Aluminum and Steel both disintegrate quickly when exposed to salt water. Washing your Fat eBike with fresh water after each ride is recommended. Fat eBike owners who ride on the beach frequently may find Titanium to be worth the extra expense.
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Anyone who has ridden a lead acid powered ebike will tell you the range sucks and the bike is heavy as a brick. Lead batteries have given electric bikes and other electric vehicles a bad name. A Lithium battery pack transforms an electric bike from recreation to a means of transportation.
These pictures show a modern fully managed Lipo battery pack. Another option is an unmanaged pack built from Radio controlled aircraft batteries. Click more for Detailed information
Some basic advantages and disadvantages of the two types of Lipo Packs:
Managed Battery packs (first picture below)
Advantages: The managed pack automatically shuts off when any cell becomes fully discharged, protecting the cells from damaging overdisscharge.
Managed packs balance while charging automatically. The user only needs to plug in a charger and wait for the green light to illuminate on the charger. Full charge usually takes only 1- 1.5 hours for a 48v 10 ah pack.
R/C Packs- unmanaged packs (second picture below)
Advantages: The pack size can be tailor fit to the users’ needs. 4 individual R/C packs yeild about 15-20 miles range on flat ground. For a short ride of only 5- 8 miles the user could pack just two packs for a very light weight pack. Alternatively 10 – 20 packs could be stacked together to yeild close to 80 miles of range.
The cost of the unmanaged R/C packs is significantly lower than managed packs.
Individual R/C packs are available in a range of capacity, discharge rate and chemistry choices while fully managed packs generally come in 2 or 3 capacity choices and tend to offer lower discharge rates. Discharge rate is unimportant to users of lower powered ebikes but high powered machines need high discharge rate batteries. For very high amperage motor and controller configurations unmanaged R/C packs are the only feasible option