Are fat tires better than regular tires?
The fat tires are extremely comfortable; if you’ve never ridden one you won’t believe how dream-like it is to ride one. They can also traverse any terrain, including sand and snow which would bog down regular tire-width bikes. This is why they’re often called “beach bikes” or “snow bikes”. If you’ve tried riding a regular mountain bike on snow, sand or ice, you’d most likely crash.
On the other hand, thinner and lighter tires allow you to reach a higher top speed. There’s less friction you have to combat with thinner wheels. That’s why all those professional cycling bikes have very narrow tires.
Are fat ebikes harder to ride or handle?
Fat-tire bikes are harder to ride than regular bikes; due to the added weight and width of their tires. If we had to pin a number, they might be just 5% harder to power than regular bikes. Electric bikes not only assist you in pedaling, but can also engage the throttle to make it easier for you.
There’s virtually no difference between fat-tire and regular-tire electric bikes; the added motors take care of any added effort you’ll need to ride. Theoretically, the 5% we assumed might translate into regular tire e-bikes having 5% more range.
The fat tire bikes are actually easier to handle and control in most conditions. While they do look cumbersome, they turn like a dream and are easier to control. They also balance themselves out (gyroscope) better. If you’ve never ridden a bike or have a kid that’s just learning, a fat tire electric bike is a bit easier to learn to ride than a regular one.
While we do not recommend it, they are easier to ride no-handed than regular bikes. Please practice caution and wear safety gear.
Hub motor vs. mid drive-motor vs. ultra mid-motor
There are advantages and drawbacks to each. For pure performance, ultra mid drive motors are the strongest ones out there. They offer exceptional torque and very precise electric control. They’re also the most expensive option out there. Bafang usually makes ultra mid-drive motors, and they’re a quality, well-trusted brand.
Mid drive motors are a step below ultra mid drives. They have a motor housed in between the pedals, and use the chain to propel the bike forwards. They have a lot more torque than hub motors, and are often of higher quality. They’re durable, but they’re at the forefront of most impacts on a trail, which means that they’ll often have a shorter lifespan than a hub motor. They also require maintenance and a precise chain-to-gear ratio. DIY bike builders often make the mistake of buying a mid-drive motor with the wrong ratio and can’t use all their gears, or in some cases destroy their bike.
Hub motors are the cheapest and easiest option out there. They’re usually waterproof, and you don’t have to worry about gear ratios or anything. They’re plug and play, and are the most used type of motor used in e-bike conversion kits. They’re a great option for a beginner, or for someone that wants to save a bit of money. Their downside is that they offer lower torque, meaning that hills are harder to climb. Most hub-motors are installed on the rear wheel for better torque and control.