E-bike conversion workshop - Penguin

Do you want the freedom to ride more often and travel further?  Perhaps you could convert your bike to an e-bike, in a workshop made possible by the Tasmanian Climate Change Office.

When:  Sunday, November 16th, 10am - 12:30pm (plus as much afternoon time as required to complete conversions). 

Where:  RESEED Centre, Penguin

This is a theoretical and practical workshop where you will:

- learn the necessary background for conversion of a bicycle to electric assist 

- complete a bicycle conversion*

- have the opportunity to ride and experience an electric assisted bicycle

Please RSVP using the following survey https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/NB7JTHM

*For interested participants a pre-order to purchase the electric bicycle conversion kits will be made so that you can undertake the conversion on the day. Please complete the survey by COB 27 October.

A detailed set of questions and answers are included below, provided by Michael Harries.  However, don’t hesitate to contact Michael if you have further questions [email protected], ph 6437 0765

This workshop has been made possible with funding through the Tasmanian Climate Change Office.


Are you interested in converting your pedal bike to an electric assist bike?

1. What do you do to a bike to convert it? The following short Australian video will give you a snapshot of what is involved in a conversion.


2. What will a conversion cost me?

Around $600 for a good kit that includes a lithium battery. See below for a subsidy we are offering. The kits we have negotiated to purchase are good mid-range kits produced by Dillenger. You can buy a more expensive conversion kit however we want a conversion to be within the reach of most people. This is why we have chosen to use 'mid range' kits. There should be no other costs although you may want to install a rear pannier rack to mount your battery (approx cost for rack $45). 


3. How does a conversion compare with buying a new bike with electric assist?

Typically a good electric assist bike will cost you upwards of $1500. We have seen some on ebay for under $1000 and some of these could even be ok. The cheapest conversion kit available (using a lead acid battery) is about $300 while the well known conversion brand kits like BionX and Solarbike start at aroud $1000. The following Choice article compares some ebikes and includes a couple of the more expensive conversion kits.


4. What are my options for conversion?
There are three ways to convert your bike and each has pros and cons.

A) Replace your front wheel with a kit hub motor

B) Replace your rear wheel with a kit hub motor 

C) Buy a kit and motor that work on the centre crank. Crank motors have their followers but the conversions can be tricky so we won’t be doing these. 

The following supplier has a range of ebikes and conversion kits prices to compare: (note freight)
If you are still interested in the centre crank conversion method, the following site is worth a look:


5. What sort of people choose an electric bike conversion? 

Electric assisted bikes are used by a diverse range of individuals for many different reasons. For example, cycle commuters with a longer or hilly commute, those with limited fitness wishing to take up riding, those keen to transition from using a bike for occasional leisure rides to using it for shopping. commuting or long distance touring, and environmentally conscious individuals keen to reduce their use of petrol power vehicles.  


6. Will the kit fit my bike?
Any bike can be converted but the easiest bikes to convert are ones with 26" (mountain bike) or 700 (hybrid) wheels. The kits we are purchasing will fit over 90% of these bikes but because there are thousands of bikes out there you will need to take a measurement of your bike to make sure the kit will fit.  

7. How long will the conversion take?
A one day workshop will do the trick in most cases. 

8. Can I legally use my converted bike on Tas roads?
Yes - all the kits we will purchase comply with Tasmanian regulations - no bike registration is required. It is really important for you to know that many of the kits on the market do not comply so if you use those kits there is a legal requirement to have your bike registered if you are riding on the road. 

9. What is the range of an Ebike?
This depends on how and where you ride. Most converted bikes use an 8 to 12 Amp hour battery which will take you around 40 km if you assist the motor by pedalling. Simply increase the battery capacity to increase the range.  

10. Why use a lithium battery?
Lead acid batteries are very heavy and even the 'deep cycle' ones are damaged by constant discharging/ recharging. While lithium batteries are considerably more expensive, they are much lighter and will accept many more charge cycles than lead batteries. A lithium battery should manage at least 1000 charge cycles if you look after it. 

Still interested in converting your bike? Read on and complete the survey https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/NB7JTHM

Activity 3 reactions

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  • rick kimura
    commented 2015-02-05 20:12:15 +1100
    I have just purchased an ebike conversion kit . I haven’t put it on the bike as yet , but I connected the battery and joined the wiring up to test and see the wheel turn around . But ,,,,,,,its not doing anything . Its on my loungroom floor and its not working . My question is = Do I need to fit it to the bike for it to go ? and could it be an earth not connected because its not on the bike that’s causing this ?
    best regards rick
  • @BicycleTasmania tweeted this page. 2014-10-03 10:49:15 +1000
    E-bike conversion workshop - Penguin - Sunday 16 November http://www.biketas.org.au/e_bike_conversion_workshop?recruiter_id=2
  • Bicycle Network Tasmania posted about E-bike conversion workshop on Bicycle Network Tasmania's Facebook page 2014-10-03 10:49:15 +1000
    E-bike conversion workshop - Penguin - Sunday 16 November