I just got my Hill Topper electric bike kit. This is a drop-in replacement for the front wheel of just about any bicycle. The hub of the wheel is an electric motor that plugs into a battery (I opted for the lightweight lithium option). It is also connected to a button that you attach to your handlebars. Hold the button down and the motor will help spin the wheel (but you should keep pedaling). Let go and the motor turns back off.
I got the wheel yesterday afternoon. It took about 10 minutes to fill it with air and attach it to my bike. You can see it on the bike in the photo below (front wheel). It doesn’t look much different than a normal wheel. I went for a short ride with my daughter just to test out the wheel. It was amazing! Anna said she was a little scared because we were going so fast. In most areas it could keep the bike going (sometimes very slowly) even if I wasn’t pedaling, but it didn’t quite have enough power to get me up the hill to our house without pedaling. We live at the top of a pretty steep hill though.
Today I gave it another shot by myself. In the morning I rode 3 miles up and down hills. In the evening I rode another 4.65 miles, this time not only up and down hills, but also in killer 100°F weather. Was I tired? Yes. Could I have gone further? Absolutely!
Anyways, I’m pretty excited to start biking. It has been probably 4 years since I’ve ridden a bike further than 1/4 mile, mainly due to my sedentary web developer lifestyle that has left me unable to ride a bike further than 1/4 mile.