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Carry More Comfortably with Racks and Bags

Category: Pro Tips, Uncategorized

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One of the major perceived drawbacks of biking over automobile transportation is the lack of cargo carrying capacity. However, with the right setup, most would be surprised at how much a bicycle can help you carry.

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Of course, not all of us can be the hero in the above picture, but luckily, there are all sorts of bicycle accessories that can help you carry what you need to where you need it to be.

A backpack is a useful cargo tool but the physical exertion inherent to cycling often leaves you sweaty, which in combination with wearing a backpack is sticky and uncomfortable. A key item in freeing yourself from the tyranny of the backpack is a rear rack, often colloquially known as a “rat-trap”.

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Axiom Journey Rear Rack

These can have cargo strapped on them directly, with bungee cords, rope, or whatever is at hand, but are better combined with rack-mounted pannier bags or rack top bags. Pannier bags attach securely to a pannier, but can be removed and carried with a convenient handle. These are among the highest-capacity bicycle luggage items available, many featuring separate pockets. Some are even fully weatherproof to keep your stuff dry in the Vancouver wet. These range from the rugged to the urban chic.

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Blackburn Wayside Backpack Pannier (L) and Basil Urban Fold Messenger Bag (R)

Rack top bags also attach to a rear rack, but to the top, rather than the side, of the rack. These generally have a lower capacity than pannier bags, but are less bulky.

Blackburn Top Rack Bag

Blackburn Barrier Rack Top Bag

Beyond this, many other options for hardcore bicycle storage exist – smaller handlebar bags which mount to your bars, seatpost bags which mount to your seatpost below your saddle, frame bags which mount within the main triangle of your frame, front panniers designed to mount onto a pannier rack attached to your bicycle’s front fork, and even specialized cargo bikes for carrying extremely heavy loads.

If you’re thinking of getting geared up for serious cargo carrying, come down to Denman Bikes and our experienced mechanics and salespeople will be happy to help you get set up with the best bicycle cargo system for your needs!

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This could be you… adventure awaits

 

Everything You Ever Need to Know About Wheels and Tires

Category: Uncategorized

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Wheels and tires are an often overlooked part of a bicycle. It’s common practice among bicycle manufacturers to offer better shifting and brakes on a bike at the expense of their bikes’ wheels; similarly, it’s all too easy to throw on the cheapest tires that fit, but the performance of your wheels and tires can greatly affect your ride and safety.

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Wheels and tires in action

The most obvious aspect of tire performance is grip. In scientific terms, friction force between two surfaces depends on how the material of each of the surfaces interact and the force applied between the surfaces. Surprisingly, this leads to the conclusion that on a solid surface, that the width of the tire doesn’t affect grip! However, real-world conditions dictate that wide tires will generally grip better – surfaces such as sand, loose gravel, or dirt, which aren’t solid, require larger tires run at lower pressures to maintain grip as the force is applied over a larger area, leading to less potential for loss of grip.

Another important aspect of tire pressure is energy loss from tires. As many racers might point out, aerodynamic forces on tires provides drag – however, this is negligible in comparison to the drag from the rider and bicycle itself and also involves a number of complex interactions between the passing air and the system of bicycle components. In short, putting skinny tires on your bike to go faster may not give you the results you expect. The other way that tires absorb energy is by interactions with the road – as tires deform to go over bumps and recover their shape afterwards, energy is converted to heat and lost. Supple, wider tires run at lower pressure can help to reduce this type of energy loss. More on this subject, including empirical test results, can be found in the magazine Bicycle Quarterly.

Tire and wheel weight are also important aspects of bicycle performance. In comparison to the rest of the bicycle’s components, which resist forward motion with largely linear inertia, tires and wheels also have rotational inertia. In layman’s terms, wheel and tire weight have an outsized effect on how easy it is to accelerate your bike. Light tires and wheels will make your bike faster to accelerate, but this consideration must be balanced with the strength of wheels and the amount of flat protection you need.

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Schwalbe Marathon Plus puncture protection – flat resistance comes at the cost of weight

The weight and inflation pressure of your tires are also important for other reasons – though it may not seem obvious, your tires are part of your suspension system. Heavier tires lead to worse suspension performance, especially with off-road, suspended bikes.

Finally, wheel size has important consequences for the performance of your bike. Broadly speaking, larger wheels will roll faster as they can pass over bumps and road irregularities more easily, but all things being equal, they are heavier, weaker, slower to accelerate, and offer worse handling. The opposite is true for smaller wheels.

So, what should you know about tires and wheels? They are a hugely important part of your bike’s performance, and are often overlooked. Wide, light, supple tires run at lower pressures and pumped up often will offer the best performance in real-world conditions for most people.

Now at Denman Bikes – Dynamo Lighting!

Category: Featured Items, Pro Tips

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We at Denman Bikes are excited to announce that we now carry dynamo lighting systems!

What are dynamo lighting systems? Simply put, they use a small part of the power used to propel your bicycle forwards to power lights – no batteries are needed! In addition, these systems can power USB devices, so you can recharge your phone while you ride. Dynamo lights are widely used in Europe, where regulations such as the tongue-twisting German Straßenverkehrszulassungsordnung (abbreviated StVZO) requires dynamo lights on every bicycle and for these light to have beam patterns closer to those of car headlights. What this means is that their reflectors put light onto the road where you need it, as compared to the reflectors commonly found in North American lights, which spread light onto the road, into the sky, and onto nearby scenery, requiring the light itself to be higher-powered to be equally useful. Dynamo lights don’t just turn on when you ride, as well – a supercapacitor inside the lights powers the lights for some time when you come to a stop, as well.

The dynamo hubs we currently have stock in our web store are the Shutter Precision 8-Series and 8X-Series hubs. These hubs are compatible with both dynamo head and tail lights, have a high-polish anodized aluminum finish in a variety of different colours, have sealed cartridge bearings which require virtually no maintenance, and are compatible with rim brakes and 6-bolt and centerlock disc brakes.

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Shutter Precision PL-8 hub for centerlock disc brake

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Shutter Precision PD-8X 15mm thru-axle hub for disc brake

To complement these hubs, we have a number of compatible lights in stock from brands such as Supernova, Busch + Müller, Herrmans, and Spanninga, ranging from the basic to the deluxe.

Our highest-output light is the Supernova E3. This clocks in at 205 lumens for the single-LED version, or up to 640 lumens for the triple-LED off-road version. Both are sturdy, fully waterproof, and light, and will mount on your handlebar for ease of use.

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Supernova E3 triple headlight

Another high powered light we sell is the Herrmans H-Black Pro. It is comparable to the Supernova single-LED light in power, but features 3 LEDs and a novel hemispherical lens.

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Herrmans H-Black Pro

Finally. we stock the Busch + Müller Eyc T Senso Plus and Lumotec Classic T Senso Plus. What does all this terminology mean? Well, the “Senso” denotes that these lights have a lower-power daytime mode, which activates automatically depending on ambient light levels; the “Plus” denotes that they have a standlight, and will stay on for a while after you have come to a stop. The Classic T adds vintage styling to this package, complementing any retro build while still using modern power LED technology and a modern reflector.

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Busch + Müller Eyc T Senso Plus

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Busch + Müller Classic T Senso Plus

We currently stock two tail-lights, both by Spanninga: the Elips XDS, a large, bright, rack-mounted tail-light win an integrated reflector, and the NR 9 XDS, a tail-light which mounts on your rear fender and which features classic vintage chrome styling (perhaps a worthy complement to the Busch + Müller Classic T Senso Plus).

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Spanninga Elips XDS

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Spanninga NR 9 XDS

All in all, dynamo lighting systems provide a well-engineered, on-demand, battery-and-hassle free, and more environmentally friendly alternative to cheap battery-powered lighting. Whether you’re interested in them for safety, performance, to use on an upcoming bicycle odyssey, or if you just think they’re cool, come down and check them out today in our store at 2607 Main Street!

Gravel Touring and Velo Orange Bikes

Category: Bike Trends

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Many have heard of touring bikes, but few have heard of gravel touring. It’s not quite road touring; it’s not quite mountain biking; it’s not quite cyclocross; so then, what is it exactly?

Gravel touring has a long heritage, stretching back to prewar Europe. In those days, off-road riding was necessary as road networks weren’t as developed as they now are today – a straight road bike would soon run into problems. Bikes developed by some of the best-known French constructeurs such as Alex Singer and Rene Hersé were the original do-anything bikes, kitted out with many features to facilitate long-distance riding and enjoyment of the cycling experience while still being light, capable, high-performance machines.

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Vintage gravel touring bike

Modern gravel bikes such as the Velo Orange Polyvalent draw directly from this rich heritage, while updating them with modern materials and conveniences. A recent build that we did for a customer features Velo Orange Grand Cru Drillium cranks – these feature many small drilled holes, which was a technique often used to lighten bike components and to add character.

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Velo Orange Grand Cru Drillium cranks

This bike also has a 1″ threaded stem and curved front fork blades for added classic bike chic. Like many multipurpose bikes, it is capable of fitting wide tires – in combination with the smaller 650b wheelsize, halfway between a 700c road bike wheel and a 26″ mountain bike wheel, these wide tires offer better performance on rough surfaces and off-road with stronger, faster-rolling wheels than an equivalent 700c wheel, while being faster than a mountain bike wheel. In addition, higher-volume tires can decrease flats, about which more will be said in a future in-depth blog post on wheel size and tires.

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The Velo Orange Polyvalent’s curved fork blades and 1″ quill stem

All these classic features are enhanced by the addition of modern bicycle technology. A 10sp rear indexed rear derailleur with road-style shifters makes shifting easy, predictable, and fast; modern polycarbonate fenders are light, durable, and corrosion-proof; an rear pannier rack made from modern aluminum alloys is light and strong; disc brakes provide powerful, predictable performance in all types of weather; clipless pedals provide a better connection to the road while their dual-sided design allows their use with regular shoes; and a modern Abus lock protects this beautiful and high-performance bike from theft.

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So, what’s gravel touring? It’s biking, but more – more fun, more versatile, more go-anywhere. The sky – or the horizon is the limit.

Blow Out Deals on Commuter Bikes! Save BIG!

Category: Bike Trends, Promotions

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Living in Vancouver and looking for a new bike to commute with?

Now’s a Great time to get in on a sweet deal for some of our remaining 2017/2018 clear-out bikes.  Don’t get us wrong, we LOVE these bikes, but with all the new technology coming in for 2019, we just HAVE to make some floor space.  So here’s you chance to save some big bucks!

How a about the Opus Zermatt Men’s 24 speed Disc Brake?

SAVE UP to $355!

Starting at just $495 for a Fully-equipped with rack, fenders and double-legged kickstand!
You cannot beat this deal for a quality bike, that includes Life-time warranty on the frame and fork, AND Free tune-ups in the first year!

OPUS Zermatt Mens blackOpus Zermatt Mens blue

 

Townie Commute – Seriously Comforable and Great and Hills!

Save $405 !!!

For an even more Comfortable Commute, we have the Electra Townie Commute 27D, with Hydraulic Disc brakes and a gear-ratio built for climbing hills.  This bike rides like a Light SUV!

Big Savings at just $795,  So Many Features,  including DYNO Lighting System, and SCHWALBE Fat Frank 700c Tires!!  WOW!!

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Here’s some Performance-oriented commuters to get you excited about;

Kona 2018 Dew Deluxe

SAVE $ 255

The Kona Dew Deluxe is a fantastic light-weight fully equipped commuter with Hydraulic Disc Brakes.

We wouldn’t even bother to put this one on sale, but we need room for those new 2019’s.

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Kona Dew Basic 2018 – Regular $700, Sale $595

Another great Disc Brake option!

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Opus Orpheo 4 – Regular  $750, Sale $495 !!

SAVE $ 255

If you’re lucky enough to be size LARGE, This Deal Is YOURS!

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Kona Dew City 2018 – Regular $595, Sale $495

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Opus Oprheo 2 –  Regular $930, Sale $775

One of our Favourite, lightweight, fast , agile and stealthy MATTE BLACK bikes

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These Deals are for a limited-time and WHILE SUPPLIES LAST!

For Even More Deals, Check out our Website Catalogue Here

 

 

Kona E-bikes at Denman Bikes

Category: Featured Items

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At Denman Bikes, we stock only quality e-bikes, which function well as regular bicycles but also provide the help you need when you need it with their electric drive. One of the brands we carry is Kona, a Pacific Northwest bicycle brand founded here in Vancouver.

Kona Dew-E

The Kona Dew-E is an electrified version of their best-selling Dew commuter bike. It shares the same simple, utilitarian genes as the Dew: it has hydraulic disk brakes for consistent stopping power in all types of weather, a high-quality and reliable Shimano drivetrain, and a comfortable and nimble aluminum frame suitable for all types of riding. In addition, the Dew-E is equipped with fenders, integrated Busch & Muller lighting, and high quality Schwalbe Energizer Plus Greenguard e-bike tires, making it an even more capable and useful ride.

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The Kona Dew-E has a bottom-bracket mounted Bosch Active Line electric motor. This powerful motor allows travel at speeds up to 32 km/hr, and is fully sealed, requiring no maintenance. A handlebar-mounted cycle computer allows switching between four power modes, from minimal “eco” mode up to the impressive “turbo”, and provides a wide variety of information such as battery life, speed, trip distance, and more. The high-capacity yet light lithium-ion battery can be locked to the bike with an Abus battery lock, will take you 40-120 km depending on usage, and may be charged fully in 6.5 hours on or off the bike.

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At $4299, the Kona Dew-E is a sleek commuting machine,also capable of longer-range adventure. Call (604) 559-9494 to book a test ride, or come down to Denman Bikes at 2607 Main Street and try it out for yourself today!

 

Electra E-Bikes at Denman Bikes

Category: Featured Items

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At Denman Bikes, we stock only quality e-bikes, which function well as regular bicycles but also provide the help you need when you need it with their electric drive. One of the brands we carry is Electra, the original cruiser bike company.

Electra Townie Go!

The Electra Townie is the quintessential cruiser bike – wide, comfortable tires, a simple drivetrain, and comfortable frame geometry. As an e-bike, the Electra Townie Go! also comes equipped with powerful disc brakes for all-weather stopping power. The premium Electra Townie Commute Go! comes fully equipped with larger, higher-volume tires on larger wheels for maximum comfort, hydraulic disc brakes, a low-maintenance 8 speed Shimano Nexus internally geared hub (never have your chain fall off again!), fenders, a front and rear rack for maximum carrying capacity, and integrated front and rear lights.

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These e-bikes are powered by a Bosch Active Line 3 bottom-bracket mounted electric motor, taking you to a maximum assisted speed of 32 km/hr. Its lightweight and powerful lithium ion battery lasts 40-120 km on a charge, depending on usage, and charges fully in 6.5 hours. A handlebar-mounted cycle computer selects from four assist modes, and shows other details such as battery life, speed, trip distance, and more. The electric system on these bikes is fully sealed, requires no maintenance, and features a manufacturer warranty.

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Handlebar-mounted Bosch cycle computer

Starting at $2749, the Electra Townie Go! is a comfortable, smooth ride; it’s made for cruising and good times and is available with both a step-thru and a step-over frame. The fully-loaded, premium Electra Townie Commute Go! is $3699, also in both a step-thru and step-over frame. Call (604) 559-9494 to book a test ride, or come down to Denman Bikes at 2607 Main Street and try it out for yourself today!

Electra Loft Go!

The Electra Loft is a sophisticated, classic bicycle which would be equally at home in the cafes of Paris or of Vancouver. Its clean lines give it timeless style, and its simple drivetrain, light weight, and step-thru geometry make it a pleasure to ride. The Electra Loft Go! comes upgraded with hydraulic disc brakes, front and rear racks, and integrated lights.

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The Electra Loft Go! features the same Bosch Active Line drive system as the Townie Go!, providing the same consistent power over long range.

At $3899, the Electra Loft Go! is a classic European-style city bicycle. Call (604) 559-9494 to book a test ride, or come down to Denman Bikes at 2607 Main Street and try it out for yourself today!

Electra Ace of Spades

Electra is known for stylish cruisers, and the Electra Ace of Spades Go! is the pinnacle of their offerings. Its sleek matte-black frame will turn heads wherever you go, but looks are only the beginning when it comes to this bike’s features.

The Ace of Spades Go! will get you up to speed with an 8 speed drivetrain, with a simple low-maintenance Shimano Nexus internally geared hub. To slow you back down, Tektro hydraulic disc brakes provide powerful all-weather braking performance. This bike has fat balloon tires and a sprung leather seat for maximum riding comfort.

This bike’s functionality is backed up by the same reliable, long-lasting Bosch Active Line drive system that powers the rest of Electra’s e-bikes. Not only can you cruise in style, but you can do so at speed without breaking a sweat.

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The Electra Ace of Spades – the simplicity of a bicycle with the moxie of a motorcycle

At $4299, the Electra Ace of Spades Go! oozes style and baditude; it’s the ultimate cruising machine. Call (604) 559-9494 to book a test ride, or come down to Denman Bikes at 2607 Main Street and try it out for yourself today!

HOLIDAY GIFT GUIDE: FOR THE KIDS

Category: Featured Items, Gift Ideas

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It’s that time of year again! At Denman Bike shop, get great holiday value and selection for the cyclist in your life, no matter what their style…or age!

Wondering how to light up the face of the little people in your life? Whether you’re getting a child excited about learning to ride, or just looking for a few stocking stuffers, we’ve got it all!

HANDLEBAR AND WHEEL ACCESSORIES

These classic bike accessories are timeless, affordable and always perfect for both the young, and the young-at-heart. Pick up a few and keep some for yourself, we won’t tell!

“Spokeydokes” – the perfect stocking stuffer!

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Valve Caps – fun, cheap and practical too!

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Handlebar Streamers! A Classic.

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Bells, bells and more bells!

We are known at Denman for our bell selection, and you’ll be hard pressed to choose just one. Lucky they’re such a great range of prices and styles, so you won’t have to!

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BIKE LIGHTS – SAFETY + STYLE

Nothing says “happy holidays” like the cheerful glow of coloured lights…bike lights that is! Keep your young one safe on the road with this cycling essential.

Wheel Lights  – Visibility with a statement!

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USB Lights – perfect for that university student on the go!

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Other Front and Rear Light Sets – lots to choose from!

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A BRAND NEW BIKE!

Possibly the most time-honoured holiday gift in memory. Nothing beats a shiny new bike to make some of the most happy and lasting of holiday memories.

Check out our complete selection of kids bikes and frames for young riders! Have a teen? Ask us about our other options!

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Opus e-bikes at Denman Bikes

Category: Featured Items

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At Denman Bikes, we stock only quality e-bikes, which function well as regular bicycles but also provide the help you need when you need it with their electric drive. One of the brands we carry is Opus, a Canadian bicycle brand from Montréal, Québec.

Opus Grid

The first electric bike we’ll talk about is the Opus Grid. This bicycle has the simplicity of a single-speed bike: never worrying about a dropped chain, never trying to find the right gear or being in the wrong one, and decreased maintenance. The limitations of a single-speed bike, however, are overcome by the Vittoria E-wheel rear wheel, which assists with the power you need. This rear wheel combines three groundbreaking innovations to deliver a cutting-edge e-bike experience: first, it is entirely self-contained, with charging accomplished via regenerative braking; second, it connects to your smartphone to manage trip data and adjust settings; third, these combine to decrease your cycling effort by 30-40%! This simple, self-contained electric propulsion system also helps bring down the weight of the bike, making it one of the lightest e-bikes on the market.

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In addition to the electric bike functionality, the Opus Grid has a host of other features and components that make it a pleasure to ride. It comes equipped with a kickstand, and a front rack with rack stabilizer keeps you upright and stable even when laden with heavy items. The nimble 26” wheels have comfortable high-volume tires that will makes rough roads a breeze. And finally, the internal cabling complements the clean matte black of the frame, which is offered in step-thru and regular.

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A trip to the grocery store with the Opus Grid

At only $2499, the Opus Grid is a mean, clean, city-riding machine. Call (604) 559-9494 to book a test ride, or come down to Denman Bikes at 2607 Main Street and try it out for yourself today!

Opus Connect

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The Opus Connect is a step-thru European city-style bike powered by the Shimano STEPS e-bike system. This features a high-density lithium polymer battery which powers a bottom bracket-mounted motor. This system also incorporates built-in lights, which are controlled from a detachable speedometer and cycle computer mounted on the handlebar. This system offers three levels of assist: eco, normal, and high. As seen in the picture of the cycle computer, high will get you moving pretty quickly indeed!

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The Shimano STEPS cycle-computer (yes, that is 32 km/hr!)

The Connect features a 9-speed Shimano drivetrain and Shimano hydraulic disc brakes for all-weather stopping power. In addition to integrated lights, it comes fully equipped with a rack and fenders. This bike is equipped with everything you’d need for Vancouver riding – while Vancouver stays wet, you’ll stay dry as you zoom through the city.

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The Opus Connect keeps Vancouver wet – but you dry

At $3499, the Opus Connect is a fully loaded city cycling machine – if you want a slightly less pricy option, there are lower power options without fender, rack, and lights starting at $2999. Call (604) 559-9494 to book a test ride, or come down to Denman Bikes at 2607 Main Street and try it out for yourself today!

Opus WKND

Our final Opus e-bike offering is the Opus WKND. A sportier alternative to the Connect, it features the same Shimano STEPS e-bike technology, Shimano 9-speed drivetrain, Shimano hydraulic disc brakes, and full suite of accessories, but in a package more suited to multipurpose riding. A suspension fork provided a bit more comfort, skinnier rims and tires add speed, and a more aggressive riding position and frame geometry add efficiency and improve handling.

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At $3499, the Opus WKND is your choice for conquering the city, for riding trails: for exploration and fun. As with the Opus Connect, lower power options without fenders, rack, and lights start at $2999. Call (604) 559-9494 to book a test ride, or come down to Denman Bikes at 2607 Main Street and try it out for yourself today!

Why E-Bikes?

Category: Bike Trends, DBS Community, Pro Tips

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Have you ever found yourself wishing you could ride your bike to the store, the park, to work, but it’s a little bit too far? Or gone shopping on your bike and ended up buying things that are a little uncomfortably heavy? Or do you need the range of a car, but hate parking in Vancouver? (who doesn’t) If so, an electric bike might be right for you!

Electric bikes have come a long way since their conception. As early as the 1890s, US patents were being filed for electric-assist bikes, and e-bikes were available to consumers in a variety of configurations. These early e-bikes, however, were heavy, due to the materials in use at the time, and specifically due to the lead-acid batteries used to power them.

E-bike 1932 (by Philips & Simplex)

E-bike 1932 (by Philips & Simplex)

Luckily, today we live in a different world. Advances in materials have made quality e-bikes lighter, more powerful, higher range, and more pleasant to ride than ever before. Modern e-bikes often have frames of high-strength, low-weight aluminum, optimized geometry for the bike’s expected style of riding, powerful, compact motors placed in optimal drivetrain configurations, fully weather-sealed components, and energy-dense, light, fast-charging lithium-ion batteries.

What this means for a potential e-bike user is that not only do quality e-bikes ride like a normal bike, but they also provide the assistance you need, when you need it. Need to go that extra 10 kilometers? You can. Filled your bags too full of groceries? No problem. Want to go on a long bike ride with your fit friend, child, or grandchild? You’ll leave them in the dust. Hills getting you down when you want to go down to Spanish Banks? Leave it to an e-bike to get you back up.

As for maintenance issues, quality e-bikes are built with weather and wear in mind, so maintenance on the e-bike components will be minimal. In addition, the electrical components of all the quality e-bikes we sell come with at least a two year warranty. Legally, an electric bike is considered a regular bicycle, as well, so you won’t need any more safety equipment than you would need with a regular bicycle. However, one thing this entails is that the e-bike motor can take you to a legal maximum of 32.2 km/hr on level ground; if you’ve ever gone this fast on a regular bicycle, you’ll know that is pretty fast.

A modern e-bike (https://www.flickr.com/photos/testlab)

A modern e-bike (https://www.flickr.com/photos/testlab)

So, to conclude, who are e-bikes good for? In Vancouver, e-bikes are good for everyone! Many of our quality e-bikes come decked out with everything you could need for Vancouver and its weather – most have rain-defeating fenders already fitted, and some come with cargo transportation components ready-fitted. No matter your cycling experience, check out our catalogue of e-bikes, call (604) 559-9494 to book a test ride, or come down to Denman Bikes at 2607 Main Street and try out one of our e-bikes for yourself today!