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Electric bike company builds all their e-bikes in the US

Electric bike company builds all their e-bikes in the US 2020-09-08Leave a comment

fats tire electrical bike Electrical bike firm builds all their e-bikes within the US

At a time when almost each US-based electrical bicycle firm imports their e-bikes from Asian factories, one California-based firm proudly builds its e-bikes regionally. Newport Seashore-based Electrical Bike Firm invited me out to its manufacturing unit south of Los Angeles to see for myself what goes into the method of constructing prime quality, American-made electrical seaside cruisers.

My first introduction to the Electric Bike Company truly got here final 12 months when I reviewed their flagship model. I walked away from that have very impressed with the standard of the bike. However whereas it’s one factor to listen to the phrase “Constructed within the USA”, it’s one other factor completely to see it in motion.

Native manufacturing, after all, means native workers. Electrical Bike Firm has a crew of twenty-something workers that every one reside across the neighborhood. And because it seems, seaside cruiser-friendly Newport Seashore has confirmed to be the proper location to determine the corporate.

“That is necessary to us,” Electrical Bike Firm CEO Sean Lupton-Smith defined to me. “These are electrical seaside cruisers which might be inbuilt a seaside neighborhood by individuals who reside in that seaside neighborhood.”

Take a look at the brief video of my go to to Electrical Bike Firm’s manufacturing unit above

With native manufacturing and higher management over your entire course of, Electrical Bike Firm is ready to supply maybe the perfect guarantee within the trade: 10 years on the body and motor in addition to 5 years on the battery.

The corporate additionally takes benefit of the intense degree of management they’ve over the manufacturing course of to outfit the bikes with the perfect parts they will with out pushing the worth sky-high. That worth, by the best way, ranges from $1,499 to $1,999 for Electrical Bicycle Firm’s present line of electrical seaside cruisers. And whereas that worth appears pretty middle-of-the-road, the standard of those bikes far exceeds the worth.

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From guaranteeing the usage of sealed bearings to using solely stainless-steel rust-resistant {hardware} on the bike to utilizing custom-made e-bike particular tires rated for 50 km/h (31 mph) to outfitting the bikes with Tektro Dorado 4-piston hydraulic disc brakes (which is basically motorcycle-level high quality), these bikes are properly designed and even higher outfitted.

Simply take a look at the custom-made tires that Electrical Bike Firm designed, proven beneath in comparison with different high-quality tires they’ve examined.

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Talking of the Tektro Dorado hydraulic disc brakes, Electrical Bike Firm initially needed to assemble its personal brake levers, strains, and calipers on the bikes from Tektro’s components, however Tektro doesn’t enable firms to carry out such meeting, and as an alternative solely ships the brakes as an entire meeting, pre-bled from its Taiwanese manufacturing unit. However to make sure good cable lengths and optimum efficiency on its bikes, Electrical Bike Firm invited Tektro’s engineers out to see its California manufacturing unit.

After impressing Tektro with its skilled meeting course of, Tektro granted Electrical Bike Firm the precise to assemble Tektro’s personal brakes regionally. Now there’s a crew of dudes in California assembling, putting in, and bleeding e-bike brakes as an alternative of some anonymous, faceless thriller line employee someplace all over the world.

Actually, you received’t even discover any line staff at Electrical Bike Firm’s manufacturing unit. There the bikes are hand-built by a single technician.

As Sean defined to me, “What we construct is a really private product, these electrical bikes. So we attempt to give a extra private contact, and that features the identical builder engaged on the bike from begin to end.”

These builders obtain the acquisition orders from Electrical Bike Firm’s entrance workplace, full with a variety of customization choices provided to every buyer, after which start constructing the bike from the bottom up, beginning with the naked body. Actually, generally the frames are literally naked, as in unpainted aluminum.

That’s as a result of Sean had a twig sales space facility inbuilt his manufacturing unit, formally licensed and permitted, in order that the corporate may supply an entire vary of {custom} colours to its riders. The paint is even regionally sourced proper there in Newport Seashore.

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Now, after all, an American-built electrical bike isn’t made solely from American-sourced components. Like every car, Electrical Bike Firm’s e-bikes have a global provide chain. German-made Continental tires, Taiwanese-made Tektro Dorado brakes, Korean-made Samsung battery cells, and different components are all mixed to create the ultimate product.

However by performing as a lot of the method as doable regionally in California, Electrical Bike Firm has been in a position to take away the weak factors usually discovered on cheaper imported e-bikes.

After seeing the issues with inconsistent wheel high quality, Electrical Bike Firm invested in wheel constructing and truing machines. And so they don’t simply lace the motor wheels, they even lace their very own entrance wheels as an alternative of merely shopping for off-the-shelf customary bicycle wheels. That permits them to make use of their very own selection of double-walled rims and Sapim spokes to construct high quality wheels that final for years (and assist Electrical Bike Firm supply such lengthy warranties).

From touring the manufacturing unit and speaking with Sean and his workers, I can see how a lot care is taken on each part, even those not constructed on-site.

For instance, whereas Electrical Bicycle Firm doesn’t construct their very own digital velocity controllers (the system that interfaces energy between the battery and the motor), they’ve the controllers manufactured to their actual specs, together with designing the wire lengths and connectors to be uniform throughout their whole line.

“That helps make sure that we will replace the bikes as rapidly as doable. If some new expertise comes out, we don’t need to discover a strategy to combine it into many alternative fashions, it should instantly match all of our bikes as a result of we design them this manner from the start,” Sean defined to me.

Even packaging is an space for pleasure at Electrical Bike Firm. In contrast to most e-bikes that arrive partially assembled, Electrical Bike Firm ships its bikes utterly assembled.

Riders merely roll the bike out of the field, straighten the handlebars and trip away. The bikes are available in a specially-sized field with {custom} foam blocks reduce and formed to suit the bikes, completely defending them contained in the field.

Having received an Electric Bike Company e-bike myself, I can say that it’s no doubt the best-packaged e-bike I’ve ever seen. And in my line of labor, I will need to have unboxed properly over 100 e-bikes shipped from nearly each nook of the world by now.

Electrical Bike firm is continually making an attempt to deliver much more of the manufacturing in-house. Whereas the battery cells are welded off-site, the remainder of the battery is assembled underneath the identical roof as the remainder of the e-bikes. That features wiring in anti-theft modules into the battery and even 3D printing parts of the battery instances which might be distinctive to Electrical Bike Firm.

In time these processes may be shifted to injection molding, however Electrical BIke Firm remains to be rising, that means 3D printing gives them flexibility for design adjustments and doesn’t require the identical funding as injection molded components.

Sean can also be making an attempt to innovate on different fronts as properly. Whereas he enjoys constructing high-quality e-bikes, he is aware of that not everybody can afford a $1,500 or $2,000 e-bike. So he designed a DIY electrical bicycle conversion equipment, which turned often known as the FUN equipment. It features a battery field that additionally homes the controller and wiring, and wraps itself across the bike’s downtube to remain centralized on the bike and out of the best way.

The equipment additionally features a entrance hub motor, throttle, pedal-assist, and LCD show. It even contains Electrical Bike Firm’s prime quality, German-made Continental tire. But the entire thing retails for just $699 and will conceivably flip a standard seaside cruiser or different customary bicycle into an electrical bike with high-quality components for underneath $1,000.

Sean is even hoping to discover a strategy to introduce the kits to his native South Africa, the place the cheap however highly effective and high-quality kits may foster additional independence in hard-hit communities by offering attainable transportation options.

Actually, it was the aim of bringing this kind of transportation help to South Africa that initially received Sean eager about electrical bikes almost a decade in the past, and thus can be a becoming strategy to full the circle on his journey by way of the world of electrical bicycle designing and manufacturing.

These improvements and extra (I noticed different fascinating tasks underway that aren’t prepared for public launch but) mixed with the corporate’s emphasis on native manufacturing converse to Electrical Bike Firm’s need to construct high-quality electrical bicycles that really enhance lives – each of riders and of these in the area people.

You possibly can inform how proud Sean is of the native jobs that his firm has created, of the chance he’s needed to mentor a lot of his youthful workers, and generally of the bikes that his firm has developed.

I sit up for seeing extra improvements popping out of the Electrical Bike Firm within the months and years to come back and hope different firms can use them for instance of how with the precise drive and ingenuity, e-bikes can nonetheless be constructed within the US.

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