Project Electrilope

This is a current fascination for me. I used to LOVE riding bikes. When I was a kid I wanted to grow up and be a racer, or do some sort of endurance thing. Really even up into college I rode a lot. Then into my 20’s going out to bars was more fun and then I just didn’t care.

A few times over the last 15 years I *tried* to get back into it, but I do have some physical limitations which makes it that much harder for me personally. So it’s literally an uphill task always. Found lots of excuses, we got a dog, then a second. Not really feasible to take them while riding, at least it’s not safe for either of us.

A recent thing came to mind, there are some electric kits for bikes. What really sparked my interest was our trip to Newport Beach last year and the rental places had bike with electric assist. You could literally ride to Laguna Beach and back.

So I started looking and around the time the economy was really in the toilet and gas prices were super high it seemed there were a number of people making kits. Keep in mind in like China these have been around forever. We seem to be anti electric here in the US. I spent some time researching, I already ride a motorcycle so I don’t need a bike that can do 50. I want to be able to ride on the paths and trails, but have some help when I need it.

I came across a front wheel replacement with a 250W geared motor (so you can have freewheel), which also comes with a Lithium battery, charger controller, everything packaged together.

Great, so I found a kit, now what? Well I was very anti-mountain bike in the early 90’s, I still had a love for my Mongoose Supergoose and thought Mountain Bikes were stupid and pointless and….oh hey all my friends just bought one and we are all about to go to Colleges around Colorado I better get one. After seeing what my friends got I settled on the same thing for the most part (in one case identical) a 1992 Trek 850 Antelope. To this day I have no idea why they added other names, I have seen tons of pictures of 850’s bit with various names. Don’t ask me, I just bought it and rode the hell out of it for a few years.

Most of the last 18 years it has sat, collecting dust, spider webs, I think about 300 generations of spiders probably spawned from it over the years. About 4 years ago I tried busting it out, but it turned out both the shifter pods were bad, so I gave up.

Now it’s really important to me to get back into it, not to be some world class rider, but it’s good for me. I have the resources to do the basics. We are going to buy a couple trailers so we can go on those multi mile rides and take the dogs with us.

So stay tuned, the new shifter parts as well as brake levers and cables will be here tomorrow. I will have the electric kit later in the week. Goal is to get it rideable (it technically is, in one gear) and be able to test fit the kit and make sure I like it before doing more.

Here is the picture of my starting point, I will admit I just installed the rear deck last week, got it for $10 on Amazon. Need a place to carry the 2.3lb battery.

Progress:

Day 1

Day 2

Day 3

Pictures:

1992 Trek 850 Album

1992 Trek 850 starting point.
1992 Trek 850 starting point.

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