Is 50mph too much for a light weight ebike?

Green Machine

New Member
A lot of my friends are speed junkies.... and even i think 50mph is really not that fast.

But did this buddy of mine get carried away with a 50mph 3000 watt 72 volt bike that does 50 mph on one inch slicks and only one rim brake.

I got to ride this thing at top seed and it was amazingly solid...but i do admit this bike is a little scary.

I am gonna try to embed a video:

Rad! Have you crashed at 30+?
Anyone can ride a bike at any speed. Once you've crashed at speed, THEN you know IF you really want to ride that fast.
And you have a much much better feeling of what is too fast on a bicycle.
You will be STUNNED to see/feel how far you slide (if you're lucky and don't hit something solid) at even 30mph. You have time to realize that you're leaving skin behind EACH AND EVERY INCH and you've gone many many feet...............
I hope you wear a lot of crash gear. ;)
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It can't do much for real ebikes. If you take the same basic technology, put it on a real frame with real brakes, maybe ABS brakes, real tires, turn signals, a real suspension? Then I'd ride it at traffic speeds. But then it's a motorcycle or scooter, and you'd register and insure it. If you want ebikes to be bikes you have to accept there are limits. And there are huge legal advantages to keeping low power ebikes in the bike category. The law says some ebikes are bikes and some of them are not.

Why is speed different if you build the safest frame possible? Why is speed different if there is a metal license plate on the back, and you have insurance? You can buy a Zero, right? Why not make legal motorcycles? The cost of battery tech makes this the next segment of electric vehicle people should explore. Maybe you can beat Honda to the payoff. Ebikes have kind of failed, but maybe light electric motorcycles can work. Make it so people can take the battery, by itself, up some stairs, to charge. That's a pretty big deal.

There is speed, by itself, which is a sensation. But a component of speed is risk. If you love risk, it's not the same as loving speed. Most people look at this bike and the 50 mph speed and see a huge component of risk. They imagine a blowout or a car pulling into the lane or a bit of ice...
I recently watched a YouTube compilation of motorcycle crashes. The motorcyclists mostly were speeding, and were invisible to the cars on the road. A bicycle is even more invisible than a motorcycle.

That's all one "class" of risk. The second class is mechanical failure. A light road bike with a powerful motor IS pretty much guaranteed to experience this type.

So now we are talking about 2 types of risk, not to mention the legal implications... which could be much bigger than a ticket. A motorist/pedestrian/bicyclist could get seriously injured or killed by a 50mph crash.
Have you guys heard of fixie bikes? Its a really crazy thing....they look a lot like the bike in the video but no brakes.... here in LA they are the most popular bike with young people...and some of these young people can move fast.... like 30-40mph on the same minimalistic frame and no brakes.

I was amazed by this and asked why not atleast put a front rim brake like the bike in the video. Very few guys want a front brake on their fixie.... they dont like the way it looks and they dont like the idea of it...... they fall all the time but you dont hear about many fatalities.
A pure fixie has no brakes, gears, freewheel or motor. Without a freewheel and gears, it would be very difficult to spin faster than 30 mph, for very long. The only compromise I've seen on a fixie is the addition of a front brake. To fixie aficionados the bike in the video would be sacrilegious.
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Exactly what i am saying. No this is not a fixie in the video. But in the world of me riding around LA on a fixie is 3x as dangerous as riding on this bike.

Any fixie rider can hit 30mph.... easy... i know i use to race the local fixie crowd at a local bike shop.

Remember just because it is capable of 50 does not mean its rider will choose to travel at that speed.
My neighbor in college used to drink heavily. Thought it was a great idea. I always turned down the invitation, thinking it wasn't such a good idea.

Dude burned up his kitchen after passing out while cooking...almost killed himself and a little neighbor baby.... everything turned out ok..things settled down.. a few months later? He did it again! Can't cure stupid.
I've ridden road bikes at 50+ for short stretches on descents, a front flat at that speed means a trip to the hospital, probably by helicopter if you're lucky. I like risk, but I'm older and wiser than I used to be and choose those moments carefully. On one hand, have at it, I don't care if you thin the gene pool, but on the other, bikes like that only hurt the rest of the ebikers in a fledgling community.
He doesn't HAVE to ride it at 50mph.... but he could.

A few miles of real world riding and the speed/bumps will tame down the joy of those 1" tires.

and no helmet? really?
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I'm still recovering from a 26 mph down hill wipeout, the road rash at that speed was pretty bad, can't imagine how much worse it would have been at 50 mph. . At some point you want to start to armor up like you would on a motorcycle just to protect from road rash let alone joint and back protection.