Go in on purchasing e-bike wheels from China


Hi Fellas,
I’ve done a fair bit of research into getting an electric bike.
I realised that the only viable and reliable solution is to build one with standard motor and controller and home made battery.
If purchased from UK or Europe - prices are prohibitive and easily go beyond £300-500 for the very basic heavy 24V kit.

If purchased from China - postage costs for motor alone are about 100$ which makes it not viable as well.

I’ve found this motor company that seems to be the cheapest so far:
I’m particularly planning to use the cheapest option for test:
250W rear hub motor - 60$ per motor + controller and bits - 21$

We could contact this company and ask combined postage for say 5 of us.
If postage combined and is in the range of 100$ the final price per set delivered would be about 60£.

In terms of battery I was looking at the battery power management:
http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/321108395524 - £28

65 of these 18650 ultrafire batteries :
www.ebay.co.uk/itm/261456294997 - £45 I assume we will be able to agree discount if buy in bulk

From technical spec I would expect 2Ah off these batteries that would still make 5p 13S = 10Ah * 48V battery, so it would make all bike conversion kit being in the range of £130-£150 + tinkering instead of £300+ lead acid rubbish.

Please don’t hesitate to correct me if I’m wrong.


Tagging @ellenmurray for interest.


Don’t forget to factor in exise duty when you try and get this stuff posted over here…


It seems that if price is 400$ and postage without discount say - 192$ from their website the duties will be 88£

Total costs - £434 => £87 per motor with all the bits and bolts.
Not as tasty as £60)))
will keep checking it


I’m a big fan of ebay. have a look at a seller called petrolscooter.
36 Volt Unite 250 Watt MOTOR £35 ish (including delivery)

Couple of electric drill batteries ? £20 ish each ? (I have no idea if they would be suitable)


I’ve checked him out.
Those are DC motors, they are not really suitable for bikes.
I’m talking about motor hub with brushless motor and internal gear here.


Great, hope you can get an electric bike built!

However, there are some things to consider:

  • The power limit is 200W, not 250W (see https://www.gov.uk/electric-bike-rules)
  • The weight limit for the bike and batteries will be 40kg.
  • Rear wheel motors can suffer from control issues (think of a BMW in the snow) - front wheel hubs tend to be safer in acceleration and cornering.
  • From what I can see, those motor controllers can’t be locked out at a certain RPM (legal requirement to cut power above 15mph).
  • Those cheap hub motors are total crap. Unfortunately, it seems that you pay for decent hubs, especially if they’re involved in any form of high-torque transport. £300 is a decent price for a complete conversion kit. I’ve used cheaper hubs before, and they tend to be very lacking in torque capability. In addition, some of the cheaper hubs can make awful wheels, due to unbalanced weight across the hub, and the lack of strength in the metal casing, which can lead to spoke buckle or wheel failure under load. Again, this is a good reason for front-mounting hub motors, assuming you’re not carrying much load on the front.
  • Internally-geared motors are also expensive, but not necessary if they’re mounted on the front wheel, assuming the rear hub/dérailleur is unmodified.