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Ashland, OR 97520

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Piccadilly Cycles provides complete sales and service of traditional and electric assist bicycles in Ashland, Oregon. We are an authorized dealer for Jamis, Breezer and Currie Tech Electric Bikes.

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Our neighbor here in Ashland's railroad district, Christopher Briscoe, has always had a real taste for adventure. Yesterday - May 15th - he set off on yet another cross-country bike tour...

New Arrival: Bosch Powertube

Blaine Pickett


Once again, Bosch lives up to its reputation for bringing solidly designed, exceptionally engineered products to the electric bike market with the release of their Powertube battery pack. As we've come to expect, dependability, durability, and elegance of design define this Bosch offering, available currently on a limited selection of Haibike mountain and trekking models.

In essence, the Powertube battery pack is no different in performance than their current 500Wh downtube or rack-mounted battery, with the sole exception that it is designed to fit seamlessly inside the bike frame, usually as part of the down tube, essentially disappearing from view and allowing the bike to return, aesthetically, to a more classic look.


The PowerTube 500 has a capacity of approximately 500 watt hours, delivering up to 90 miles of range on a single charge, yet it weighs only 6.2 lbs. Even with this impressive power density it is one of the lightest batteries currently on the market. For maximum range, it is compatible with a second external Bosch battery yielding up to 1000 Wh of capacity.

Moving to an integrated battery is not just a choice made to improve the bike's looks, however. An integrated battery is enclosed by the frame, better protecting it from accidental damage. It also frees up space on the frame to attach accessories like water bottles, frame packs, or a second battery. Haibike, in fact, has developed a line of accessories specifically for this purpose.


Integrated battery packs are certainly not a new idea - EasyMotion, Faraday, Focus and others have been building bikes with "invisible" batteries for years now. What's exciting about this offering, however, is that e-bike aficionados who enjoy the sophistication, power and range of the Bosch drive system can now also enjoy the advantages of an integrated battery.


A Day on a Jamis Renegade

Blaine Pickett

What's the difference between a cross bike and an adventure bike? They seem awfully similar: even from pretty close up they both appear to be typical racing bikes with some extra room for bigger tires, but the difference can be summed up simply. A cross bike is designed to be ridden for up to one hour. An adventure bike is meant to be ridden all day. And nothing rides all day like a Jamis Renegade.

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I thought I might put this idea to the test when my family decided to get away to the coast for the weekend. Bandon, Oregon is 186 miles (300km), or a bit over a three hour drive from our home in Ashland, which means if you leave after the kids get out of school you can usually sneak in a stroll on the beach before dinner. My idea was to sneak in a bit more than that, and my wife kindly agreed to do the whole drive so I could get a head start - on my bike.

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Three eggs, two slices of toast, and one cup of coffee got me started before sunrise. I picked a route that kept me on the back roads, which might have been a little bumpier, and frequently had no more than a hint of shoulder, but they were largely car-free. Oregon's Tiller-Trail Highway was a delight as I rode accompanied mostly by bird song (except in the clearcuts), eventually rolling into Canyonville well before noon, where I refueled with a buffalo burger from Ken's Sidewalk Cafe.

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On the busier roads, from old Highway 99 to route 42, I was grateful for the bike's ability to handle the rough stuff on the far right road shoulder, where I could stay well clear of log trucks, RVs, boat trailers, and the like. A steady headwind resisted my efforts to speed along to the ocean at quite the pace I would have liked, but by Myrtle Point I was able to peel off onto the idyllic Lampa lane for a final hour or so of spinning through a Vermont-like valley of farms and greenery, interrupted only by an unexpected, and rather unwelcome, 13% gradient hill thrown at me after about 175 miles in the saddle. Thankfully the Renegade carries a few spare low gears for just such an event.

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As it turned out, my family and I arrived pretty much simultaneously at our destination, the Windermere Inn. After nearly fourteen hours on the road, and just under twelve on the bike, I could confidently state that here was a bike designed and built in every way to be so comfortable, so efficient, and so fun to ride that it simply begs to be ridden all day long.

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The details: The bike is a stock Jamis Renegade Expert, but I did trim the weight to just over twenty pounds (with pedals and bottle cages - no cheating) by fitting it with a set of Rolf Prima (handmade in Oregon!) Hyalite alloy wheels, with Panaracer Gravel King 700x38 tires. It has five - count 'em - sets of water bottle bosses, but I used only three, carrying as much as 72 oz. of water at a time. The drivetrain is Shimano 105, with a compact 50/34 up front with an 11-speed 11-32 cassette. Hydraulic road disc brakes were dreamy on the rare occasions when I used them. Oh, and of course I wrapped the handlebars with Arundel's Gecko Grip bar tape, and replaced the stock saddle, however nice, with an Ergon SRX3 Pro because twelve hours in the saddle is still, you know, twelve hours in the saddle.


A Tesla Too Pricey? E-Bikes Offer Entry-Level Electric Transportation

Blaine Pickett

This article is from the New York Times, November 23, 2017.

 Countries like Germany and the Netherlands are experiencing double-digit percentage sales growth over the previous year. Credit Emmanuel Dunand/Agence France-Presse — Getty Images

Countries like Germany and the Netherlands are experiencing double-digit percentage sales growth over the previous year. Credit Emmanuel Dunand/Agence France-Presse — Getty Images

Electric cars remain something of a novelty, commanding premium prices and presenting charging challenges, but another kind of electric vehicle has been gaining momentum: the e-bike.

Globally, electric cars — battery and plug-in hybrids — account for only about 1 percent of all vehicle sales, with about 1.15 million expected to be sold worldwide this year, according to Compare that with the 35 million e-bikes expected to be purchased this year, according to Navigant, with countries like Germany and the Netherlands experiencing double-digit percentage sales growth over the previous year.

“We see e-bikes as the entry point into electric mobility,” said Claudia Wasko, director of e-bikes for Bosch America. Bosch makes one of the more popular electric motor systems for bicycles but is better known as an auto parts supplier and designer of advanced automotive technologies.

E-bikes have taken off in Europe, Ms. Wasko said, because they are viewed not just as recreational vehicles but as a practical transportation option. In fact, electric-assist bicycles offer significant advantages over electric cars.

“If you run out of power in an electric car, you have a problem,” she said. “With a bike, you can still pedal.”

Continue reading the main story

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Continue reading the main story

And then there are the advantages in cost and convenience: E-bikes can be had for less than $1,000, and their batteries can be easily removed, plugged into a regular outlet and charged in about three hours.

With designs that have to accommodate a motor and battery, e-bikes are heavier — weighing about 50 to 60 pounds — than traditional bicycles. Most models in the United States are pedal-assist e-bikes — they provide an electric boost only when the rider is pedaling, unlike throttle e-bikes, which can provide assistance even when the rider isn’t pedaling. Typically, pedal-assist models have a handlebar-mounted digital display where riders can select various levels of electronic aid, from zero on level paths to full power when climbing hills or dealing with challenging terrain.

Pedal-assist bikes are available in every bike category to appeal to every type of rider. There are step-through cruisers like the Raleigh Sprite iE Step Thru for casual cyclists. There are serious daily commuters like Riese & Müller’s Charger GX, and there are even folding models like the Oyama CX E8D.

“We think of these as an alternative to cars, not as an alternative to bicycles,” said Sandra Wolf of Riese & Müller. The company also makes a line of Packster cargo models, which can haul a week’s worth of groceries or two small children.

Indeed, the e-bike market is so broad today that every major brand, even those traditionally associated with dedicated cycling enthusiasts, has jumped onto the e-bike saddle.

“E-mountain bikes these days are super popular,” said Dominik Geyer of Specialized, whose company did some soul searching before developing its own e-bikes. But now even advocacy groups like the International Mountain Bicycling Association have abandoned their anti-e-bike stance and now support the use of pedal-assist bikes on some trails.

E-bikes can enhance the cycling experience for all kinds of riders, from novices to committed commuters who want to extend their routes without arriving at the office soaked in perspiration, said Murray Washburn, the director of global marketing for Cannondale. The technology also encourages owners to ride more often, safe in the knowledge that they can get a boost should they encounter steep hills or become fatigued far from home.

Improved technology has also helped their popularity. Manufacturers have switched from motors attached to the hub of the rear wheel to more efficient center-drive motors in the pedal crankshaft, which improve the bike’s center of gravity and handling. New lithium ion batteries are more efficient and able to deliver greater range. Depending on the weight of the cyclist and the terrain, a single charge can last between 20 and 70 miles.

More important, the experience is much more akin to riding a traditional bicycle than it was in the past. Less than a decade ago, e-bikes struggled with lugubrious handling and motors that would kick in with a jolt. Today’s models are better balanced and use smart algorithms to apply torque gradually, sensing when the rider is putting more pressure into the pedals and then delivering subtle assistance. The latest models even know when they’re stopped and can help the rider get away after a red light quickly.

That adds up to increasing sales. About 400,000 e-bikes are projected to be sold in the United States this year, double last year’s total, according to PeopleForBikes, an advocacy and industry trade group. But that would be just 2.5 percent of the 16 million bikes sold in the country.

Before they can succeed here as much as they have in Europe, e-bikes will have to negotiate a few potholes. Most notably, there is the criticism of throttle e-bikes, which can reach speeds of 28 m.p.h. or more, presenting a danger to pedestrians and other cyclists.

A phalanx of silent, high-speed bikes being used for deliveries in neighborhoods like the Upper East Side of New York has drawn attention to the need for new and better-defined regulations. About a half-dozen states have instituted rules recognizing different classes of e-bikes and allowing pedal-assist bikes that are limited to 20 m.p.h. to be used in bike lanes, without a license.

Nevertheless, the various rules can be confusing. Officials from the New York City Department of Transportation insisted in emails this month that all bicycles with any sort of electrical assistance are illegal, which would make them subject to confiscation and fines of up to $500.

But just last month, Mayor Bill de Blasio directly contradicted that view. In an announcement of a crackdown on businesses using all-electric throttle bikes, Mr. de Blasio made it clear that slower pedal-assist e-bikes, like those made by Cannondale, Riese & Müller and Specialized, “are allowable.”

But Tim Blumenthal, the president of PeopleForBikes, said he did not believe that legislative restrictions were as big a factor in sales as cost.

While e-bikes are available for about $500, buyers can expect to pay $2,000 or more for a quality model with a reasonable range and reliable service, said Chris Nolte, the owner of Propel Bikes in Brooklyn.

Mr. Nolte also recommended that buyers look for models with a center-drive motor and at least a 400-watt lithium-ion battery. Expect a two-year warranty from the manufacturer and a battery life of 1,000 full charges.

E-bikes are beginning to acquire a certain cachet, Mr. Nolte said, with more aesthetically appealing models that are difficult to distinguish from regular bicycles. Proponents say the best argument for e-bikes, however, is the experience of riding one.

“Some people said, oh, that’s like a motorcycle, that’s not bicycling,” said Mr. Geyer from Specialized. “But then they rode it and changed their minds.” selects Piccadilly Cycles

Blaine Pickett

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What we love about this site is that it is a simple, clutter-free way to find a carefully selected, nearby, competent certified shop. We're hopeful this service will make life easier for anyone looking for bike repair, and look forward to helping out anyone who finds us using