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

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

At a time when practically each US-based electrical bicycle firm imports their e-bikes from Asian factories, one California-based firm proudly builds its e-bikes domestically. Newport Seaside-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 top quality, American-made electrical seashore cruisers.

My first introduction to the Electric Bike Company really 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 staff. Electrical Bike Firm has a staff of twenty-something staff that each one reside across the neighborhood. And because it seems, seashore cruiser-friendly Newport Seaside has confirmed to be the right location to determine the corporate.

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

Try the brief video of my go to to Electrical Bike Firm’s manufacturing unit above

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

The corporate additionally takes benefit of the intense stage of management they’ve over the manufacturing course of to outfit the bikes with one of the best elements 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 seashore cruisers. And whereas that worth appears pretty middle-of-the-road, the standard of those bikes far exceeds the worth.

From making certain 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 under in comparison with different high-quality tires they’ve examined.

electric bike company tires

Talking of the Tektro Dorado hydraulic disc brakes, Electrical Bike Firm initially needed to assemble its personal brake levers, traces, and calipers on the bikes from Tektro’s elements, however Tektro doesn’t permit firms to carry out such meeting, and as an alternative solely ships the brakes as a whole 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 domestically. Now there’s a staff of dudes in California assembling, putting in, and bleeding e-bike brakes as an alternative of some anonymous, faceless thriller line employee someplace world wide.

In reality, you gained’t even discover any line employees 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. In reality, generally the frames are literally naked, as in unpainted aluminum.

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

electric bike company

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

However by performing as a lot of the method as attainable domestically 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 normal 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 staff, 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 pace controllers (the gadget 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 total line.

“That helps be certain that we will replace the bikes as shortly as attainable. If some new expertise comes out, we don’t must discover a technique to combine it into many alternative fashions, it would 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. Not like most e-bikes that arrive partially assembled, Electrical Bike Firm ships its bikes fully assembled.

Riders merely roll the bike out of the field, straighten the handlebars and journey away. The bikes are available a specially-sized field with {custom} foam blocks minimize 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 surely 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 attempting to deliver much more of the manufacturing in-house. Whereas the battery cells are welded off-site, the remainder of the battery is assembled below the identical roof as the remainder of the e-bikes. That features wiring in anti-theft modules into the battery and even 3D printing elements of the battery circumstances which are distinctive to Electrical Bike Firm.

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

Sean can be attempting 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 grew to become referred to 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 consists of Electrical Bike Firm’s top quality, German-made Continental tire. But the entire thing retails for just $699 and will conceivably flip a standard seashore cruiser or different normal bicycle into an electrical bike with high-quality elements for below $1,000.

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

In reality, it was the aim of bringing this kind of transportation help to South Africa that initially bought Sean interested by electrical bikes practically a decade in the past, and thus could be a becoming technique to full the circle on his journey by means of the world of electrical bicycle designing and manufacturing.

These improvements and extra (I noticed different attention-grabbing 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’ll be able to 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 staff, and normally of the bikes that his firm has developed.

I stay 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 example of how with the precise drive and ingenuity, e-bikes can nonetheless be constructed within the US.

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