Canada Day is a great day to test out an ebike kit. Went out for a short ride to familiarize myself with the bike.
On the low power setting, the bike gets up to around 18 kph which is a good speed for bicycle snowplowing. Middle setting allows speeds up to around 22-23 kph and the high setting allows speeds up to about 32kph. The left thumb control works like a throttle, allowing gradual increases in power all the way up to whatever power setting is selected (low, medium, high). The 500 watt motor does supply quite a bit of power up hills. My test ride included a 8% grade and at low power it was very easy to climb the hill while pedaling.
The kit is about 20 lbs so it does make the bike heavier to lift but when riding with the power assist on you won’t notice the weight much. With the thumb throttle all the way down, the motor does make some noise but letting off slightly makes it run nearly silent.
The hub motor has a planetary gear system which means more torque at low speeds. You could use the throttle to start the bike but its not recommended. Because the motor is internal in the hub, they can heat up when worked hard. A hub motor is essentially like a one gear car. Starting any electric motor from a stop while under load is very hard on them. When climbing hills pedalling should be done to avoid overworking the motor.
I found myself using the throttle to get up to speed and then pedalling with the throttle off just like a regular bicycle. This economizes on battery power. After about an hour of this, the battery indicator still hadn’t come off full.
On full power I was up to around 35 kph while pedalling before letting off on the throttle and just maintaining the speed by pedalling. From the first test ride it seems like the motor has ample power for pulling a bicycle snowplow. Of course, I’ll be pedalling while doing the plowing and using the motor as a pedal assist instead of using it like a motorcycle and expecting the motor to do all the work. This should make it much easier to pull the larger plow faster so it doesn’t take as long to plow the pathway.