Zen and the Art of Bicycle Assembly
Bicycle assembly can be fun, enlightening, and a great way to get familiar with your ebike. If you do not feel confident about assembling the bicycle, ask an expert friend or professional... or watch some 'How To' videos on youtube.
These instructions show the assembly of a mountain bike. The assembly of other bikes is very similar.
Some parts my vary from those shown here.
Note: Some bikes will need to have brake pads installed. It works well to do this first, so go to www.youtu.be/L7uI2PJR7hE
and watch the youtube video about disc brake pad installation. At some point in the future everyone will have to replace their brake pads so it is worthwhile watching for everyone.
Warning: Do not ride the bike until the brakes work!
It would be a good idea to remove the bike from the carton on a rug so the bike will not get scratched. You could lay the carton down and drag the bike out horizontally. But there is an even better way: just rip the ends of the carton open and lay the sides of the box down on the floor/ground.
Check for screws and nuts that may have vibrated loose in the carton. The fittings are metric e.g. M5 size,so it is not too big a problem if one is missing. You will find a box inside that contains some things like the tool kit. It contains a white fuse which is a spare 20 A battery fuse.
See how the handle bar is still attached to the frame by the brake, gear, and electrical cables. The helmet shown is not included because it is not approved to Australian Standards.
Socks not included.
See the quick release front axle resting on the wheel. It is tied to a spoke. Check for loose spokes and take the wheels to a bike mechanic if they need to be tightened... unless you know how to do it yourself, in which case you wont be reading this. We do our best to ensure the spokes are tight, but you should twang the spokes like a guitar string to check they are tight. The ring shaped metal tool with numbers on it is a spoke spanner. If you think you need to adjust the spokes but don't know how, check youtube for 'How To' videos on the subject.
Ouch! Not on the concrete!
So you can see that you have to install the handle bar, front wheel, front mud guard, seat, and pedals.
These little protectors may be in the ends of the front forks. Remove them.
Hmmm, how did I do that?
The quick release axle is fitted with two conical shaped springs. The small end of the spring faces the axle, and the large end faces outward.
These springs make the wheel easier to install. If one or both springs become twisted or damaged they may be removed. The springs serve no
purpose once the wheel is tight on the bike.
1. Insert the quick release axle through the hole in the center of the wheel keeping a spring on each side of the wheel. The springs are there just to make gaps to make it easier to install the wheel in the forks,
2. Screw the nut on the axle a little and then position the wheel between the forks, but...
3. You also have to watch the disc goes into the slot in the front brake caliper housing. Keep your eye aligned with the brake slot. If you can see a brake pad blocking the disc then use an Allen Key on the tool to screw the pad back out of the way.
4. Be patient, you can do it.
5. Also... cut the tail end of both brake cables off so they are no more than 3 cm long. That removes the risk of them getting caught between the disc and pads.
Adjust the quick release axle nuts so you can clip it tight.
Put on the front mud guard.
You may have to tighten up the rear rack.
Install the handle bar in the jaw of the stem. Keep your eye out for a small part that will be loose when you open the jaw. Insert the handle bar, align it in the center, and rotate it to the angle you like. It is a good idea to double check everything is tight so nothing silly can happen when you are riding. Important Note: To adjust the height of the handle bar you change the angle of the stem (that clamps the handle bar). In addition to the screws at the axis of rotation, you have to loosen a hidden screw on the underside of the stem to release teeth to allow rotation of the stem. Look under the stem. People usually have the handle bar a little higher than the seat.
Note the L, meaning left-hand thread. So the left hand side pedal screws into the crank the reverse direction of normal threads.
See the disc that is about 6 cm in diameter on the left (or right) pedal side of the pedals-axle at the bottom of the bike's frame (beside the bottom bracket)? That disc has several little magnets in it. When the pedals are turned the magnets go past a little sensor which is hanging from the frame under the pedals-axle. The sensor tells the controller (under the battery) how fast you are turning the pedals. The tip of the sensor has to be about 3 mm from the disk. Make sure it is that close by sliding the disk along the pedals-axle. The bike will not go if the sensor is not close enough to the disc!
Install the front reflector if there is one. But if your purchase included a headlight then you just have to screw it to the same spot as the front mudguard, at the top of the suspension arch. I find it works best with both the mudguard and the light support both attached on the rear side of the suspension arch. You may find the light support does not fit the arch well, but the misfit actually is good because it means the support bracket does not easily come loose.
Sliding the light power cable through the slot in the support bracket helps stabilise and position the cable. Usually the blue or red wire is positive and its mini spade connector slides onto the front spade (under the light in the position shown below).If you connect the wires the wrong way around it will not harm the light... but keep the battery switched off (using the key) until you have the wires connected. That way you will avoid an accidental short circuit while you are wiring it up. When the wires are connected, you might want to use a small cable tie (zip tie) to hold the cable firmly in position.
Oh, dont forget to put the seat on and tighten it up. When the seat is at the correct height, you should be standing with your toes on the ground when you are sitting on the seat.
If the tyres are flat it might be easiest to initially inflate the tyres at a local fuel station. The pump or valve seemed to need some pressure in the tyre to work well.
Slide the battery down into the battery holder and if there is no electrical connection on the bottom of the battery, there will be a socket to plug into near the top of the battery.
Finally, do a safety check on the tightness of all nuts, bolts, spokes, and screws.
Ask your local bicycle shop for a chain lubricant.
Any suggestions for incremental improvements to this page will be appreciatively received.
NOW YOU CAN SMILE, AND ENJOY YOUR ELECTRIC BICYCLE!