Electric Conversions for Road Bikes

Since relocating to Fremantle, our workshop has been buzzing with new electric conversions. One of the more eye-catching ones has been this Merida Ride- A solid yet lightweight aluminium road bike with a full complement of mid-range Shimano road components.




Electrically Converted Merida Ride
Electrically Converted Merida Ride

Richard brought this one in for us- he’d had it for 9 years and over that period the bike had seen very limited use.
He wanted to get more use out of it and found electric assistance to be the key. Not only does electrical assistance reduce the challenge of hills and headwinds, it also allows for a more harmonious experience with other road users allowing the rider to maintain a higher average speed thus blending with traffic more easily.

For electric conversions, road bike present two mechanical challenges, the first being carbon fiber forks being unsuitable for use with hub motors, the second being drop handlebars being incompatible with throttles.

The first problem was dealt with by fitting one of our new rear wheel mini motor kits. These motors come supplied with a Shimano compatible freehub body allowing a wide range of gear cassettes to be fitted, in addition to being disc brake compatible. On a road bike, rear wheel drive is also advantageous in allowing for greater handling balance and added traction- a must on a lightweight bike with narrow tyres.

The second challenge involved considering new handlebar options. this is where a great deal of customisability comes in. Traditional drop handlebars were incompatible with a thumb throttle, however the following bar types are suitable: longhorns, pursuit bars, risers, straight bars and porter bars. Each has its own ride characteristics. In this case, Richard opted for pursuit style handlebars so as to maintain the low riding position as well as retaining the ability to mount the integrated shift/brake levers.

The end product was a 250 Watt road bike with an easily maintained cruise speed of 35km/h and a range of close to 45kms (Using the 36V 11.6Ah tube battery) weighing in at just under 18 kilograms- Exceptionally light for an electric bike!

Here at Perth Electric Bicycles, we’re specilalists at matching electric conversions to bikes and bikes to people, so if you’re in the market, come by our new store in Fremantle for an excellent range of conversion options with personalised service to match.

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