What is an eBike Conversion Kit and Do I Need One?

If you have been looking at eBikes online you’ve probably noticed how expensive they can be. Especially when you have a perfectly functional manual bike sat in your field of vision.

In this case, what you need to consider is whether an eBike conversion kit would suit your needs more. They have a range of advantages that could prove more fruitful than buying an eBike.

What Is an eBike Conversion Kit?

The clue is in the name, really. An eBike conversion kit is used to transform your existing pushbike into an eBike. It’s that simple! There are several different styles of eBike conversion kits available, each with different advantages and disadvantages.

Powered Wheels

Some eBike conversion kits offer a powered wheel; essentially a motor that sits inside a wheel drum, located at the centre of the wheel. This powers the wheel to move forward. A powered wheel conversion is usually the easiest or most convenient conversion kit to fit. Swytch Bike’s conversion kit is a powered wheel system.

Concealed Conversion Kit

A concealed conversion kit is hidden from view - generally in the seat tube - and this drives the crankshaft directly using a bevel gear. These are generally pretty light, but given the fact that they are so small, you are unlikely to get much range out of one of these devices. Even the more expensive models only give you one hour of assisted riding.

Rear Mounted Friction Drive Conversion Kits

These strange-looking contraptions use friction to help drive your rear wheel. A motor is attached to the back of the bike, and then a wheel attached to the motor drives the wheel on your bike. This is also a fairly simple device but can be quite bulky and cumbersome.

Do I Need an eBike Conversion Kit?

Well, the fact of the matter is that it all depends on what your needs are. Do you want an electric bike but don’t want to ditch your expensive pushbike? Then this is certainly a situation in which you may want to consider a conversion.

Likewise, if you’d like to find out if an eBike is for you, then buying a conversion kit gives you a taste of what they are like and, if it isn’t for you, you can just convert your bike back again. Easy!

With all that in mind, it is best to weigh up whether you actually need an eBike, or whether an eBike conversion kit is the way to go.

Steven Knight

Written by @alex on September 12, 2021