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Chart of early fuel usage....

Here's a chart with the first 4 fillups for my new Piaggio Typhoon scooter. As you can see, it's getting decent gas mileage - in fact, there's a very good reason (user error, generically) for the dip in the 3rd data point. However, as you can see, it's not so cheap to ride that, say, it's going to pay itself off in no time.

As an alternate to a car, it's fun to read, appears reasonably safe, and there's a dealer nearby (unlike the eGO). It doesn't replace a car (or, heck, the eGO, for a variety of reasons to be detailed soon), but it fits a niche, nonetheless.

[Graph entirely removed, given how pathetic it was. There will be a future entry with a better/updated graph]

(the Mazda MPG is taken as 26, which is what it was getting a year or so ago, for purposes of calculating relative savings/gallons saved)

Update: Ok, so, I suck at making effective charts. I'll update this one when there's another data point or two, and make it be a little less hard to read/inaccurate/poorly designed. I hope. :)

Comments

Remember the book, Divoce Your Car? However, the green transportation solution may be, in a practical sense, to convert the "Ego-2" to a 30MPH electric scooter, and 15-minute "fast charge" method. With a fast charge, there is no need for a bigger (heavier) battery.

The Ego-2 costs only $1,100 retail. It can be modified to 30MPH by going to 36 volts and a chain-drive modification.

With a 15-minute charge, commuting travel becomes a possibility on the Ego-II electric scoter. The manufacturer says it has a 20-mile range, but that is imho only for "flat terrain", at perhaps 12MPH, without stops. In hilly terrain, stop-go travel, the Ego Cycle 2 may have a range of 8 miles, depending on rider weight and cargo carried.

The Ego has an advaatage over 500-watt electric bicycles, the EVT and other "electric Vespa" scooter: The Ego-II can pull a bike trailer UPHILL, with 100 lbs. of cargo, e.g. overdue books, groceries, etc. Also, with a trailer, the rider is safer imho from nasty car drivers, who sometimes play "chicken" with cyclists.

The Ego-II, when made more reliable with chain drive and other changes, imho is the most practical means of electric biking. No other electric bike, moped, or scooter, imho, comes close to delivering a package at such an affordable price.

With these modifications, comparable scooters like the EVTs costs over $2,500 and weight nearly twice as much. The EVT requires license/insurance, and cannot be parked on sidewalks, like the Ego-II, which is viewed as a bicycle in most jurisdictions.

The chain drive modification is offered on eBay, Item number: 5571993008

The 15-minute Fast Charge method is offered on eBay, Item number: 5572106194

I appreciate your feedback.

However, I disagree, on several points. (I'm also a little ticked that you keep mentioning your eBay items related to this... please avoid using item numbers. If you must, mention that you sell such things, and that anyone reading can check eBay themselves).

Several things are inaccurate: 1) In California, where I live, and most of the location of my target audience, the eGO is a moped, which must be licensed, and for which the ride must acquire a M2 endorsement (written/driving test related to motorcycles) to legally ride. Insurance is also required. 2) Though you can probably park the eGO on the sidewalk, it isn't necessarily legal. 3) Perhaps most important, such modifications void your warranty. I needed a lot of coverage under my warranty to keep my eGO going the 1 1/2 years it lasted for. Such a loss is probably unacceptable to anyone using the eGO for an serious distance. I've now driven, in under 2 months, about 1/4 of the distance that I rode the eGO in 1 1/2 years. And I've had no maintenance problems along the way. 4) It's not clear that with your 36-volt modification it is still possible to correctly license an eGO. How much wattage/horsepower does the motor generate when driven by 36-volts? Again, in California, if the wattage exceeds about 1500, or the speed on flat ground exceeds 30mph, then you've built a motorcycle, electric or otherwise. Now the insurance costs go up, you can't ride it in the bike lane (a MUST for vehicles slower than 35-40mph on city streets), and you need a better license, as well as having to pay registration renewals each year.

1) In California, where I live, and most of the location of my target audience, the eGO is a moped, which must be licensed, and for which the ride must acquire a M2 endorsement (written/driving test related to motorcycles) to legally ride. Insurance is also required.

That is totally not true. In CA the ego cycle is not concidered a motor vehical or a moped and doesnt need to be licesensed. Check DMV's web site. I did before I got mine. Also you don't need a motorcycle license to ride any moped, let alone the ego.

I'd appreciate it if you'd cite some sources if you're going to deny things I've done a lot of research on.

I've read through the California code. I'm not a lawyer, but the California code lays it out. Here're my citations:

"motorized bicycle", or "moped": http://www.dmv.ca.gov/pubs/vctop/d01/vc406.htm The important parts: < 2ghp (the eGO has 1.99), less than 30mph (the eGO tops out at ~24), no pedals and powered solely by electricity.

Further, an M2 endorsement is required to drive such a thing. See licensing requirements, here: http://www.dmv.ca.gov/pubs/vctop/d06/vc12804_9.htm

So, explain to me how the eGO is not considered a moped?

From the motorcycle handbook on the DMV site:

If you operate a motorized bicycle which meets the definition of VC �406(b), you: Are exempt from the motor vehicle financial responsibility, driver license, and moped plate requirements. (VC �12804.9)

http://www.dmv.ca.gov/pubs/dl655/dl665mcycle.pdf

Page 3

Yes, that's true, if your vehicle fits into the definition of 406(b).

The eGO doesn't - it has a top speed of around 23 or 24 miles per hour (vc 406.b.2, at the same link I give for "moped").

It also violates 406.b.1, as the motor output is rated at something like 1.99hp, which is roughly 1500 watts, not 1000.

Anyone else care to weigh in on the issue? I appreciate the citations this time, though it would've been helpful to read the laws that were being cited.

I can't understand why the government makes it so hard to commute. I mean - insurance and license for a gas-powered bicycle? But not for electric? I want to drive a car, but cannot because of accidents. WTF am I supposed to do?

ride a bicycle

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