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Brewerpaul

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  1. It's been an educational experience. I checked my old non electric bike and lo and behold it also has Tourney equipment, including a 14-34 Freewheel. I took the wheel off, hoping to steal the freewheel cluster for my Step. No luck! The bike is well over 10 years old and that bad boy is welded in place. Even with a wrench extender it wouldn't budge, even after soaking with penetrating oil. That's OK for now. I learned how to break my chain in order to clean it well, off the bike, then put it back together afterwards. Getting the rear wheel off the bike required removing the brake caliper,which I had to put back later. I learned that I'd better take some pictures of where all the various washers and spacers on the rear axle go!! At my age, I can't trust to memory. I learned that my chainstay bike lift needs some rethinking. As it is, I can't put the bike on it with the kickstand down or the pedal hits the kickstand. As it is, the only main option might be to take off the kickstand when I want to use the lift. To finish this job I fell back on my lift using two saw horses and a very stout hoe handle through the frame resting on them . I'll tweak the lift somehow. I gave the derailleur a good cleaning, off of the wheel. then learned how to get the chain,sprocket,derailleur and rear gears to go together so they work, I also found an excellent tutorial on setting up a derailleur from scratch,setting the limits and the indexing. In the past, I just tinkered with this, which is how I got in trouble in the first place. I still need a tiny tweak of the derailleur. Gears 6 and 7 hop back and forth between each other. However, dinner was ready and I had to call it quits. If I ever do decide to get a 14-21 gear, I'll have a MUCH better idea how to do it!
  2. Here's my jerry rigged rear wheel stand. I'm not thrilled with how the bike rests in the PVC cradles but fixing them will have to wait. With the wheels up in the air, I had to close the front hand brake with rubber bands to prevent the bike rolling off. So, I got the axle nuts and shrouds off, but now I can't see how to actually remove the wheel. It's not dropping out of the left side dropout. Do I have to remove the brake caliper to let it come out? Then I guess that the cable will have to thread through the right axle holder, which isn't a dropout. Every success brings new questions!
  3. I told you I'd have more questions 😁 It does not look like the 7 speed 14-34 is being offered anymore. The good news is, that is the cluster on my "analog" bike, also with Shimano Tourney, so I could swap them. The question is, is it really worth it? Is the jump from gear #2 (24T) to #1 (34) too big of a leap to be practical for the very occasional hill that defeats me? Would I be better off just accepting my Step for what it is, namely not a super hill climber?
  4. Thanks for that extensive reply! I may try my current chain to check for fit, then get the one you recommend. I just bought materials to make a work stand to elevate my rear wheel by the chain stays. Gavanized pipe, floor flange,24"square plywood and snap pvc T for the chainstays. I'm sure more questions will arise! Here are two-- assuming I want to change my chain, would I do well to buy one a bit longer than my current chain, and take out links as necessary? Does the chain you recommended have a master link, or would I need a chain tool?
  5. You made this change on a Step? Did the original chain still work?
  6. How complicated or difficult would it be to change the freewheel on my Step (original)? I want some more hill climbing power to conquer the one or two big hills I haven't been able to beat. I could have an LBS do it, but I'm pretty handy and could save $$ doing it myself. I asked Sondors some time back what the gearing was and this was the reply; Step: freewheel is AMFTZ5007428 MULTIPLE FREEWHEEL SPROCKET, MF-TZ500-7,7-SPEED, 14-16-18-20-22-24-28T, BULK and derailleur is ARD-TX35D(RD-TY300),7 speed. Shimano has a 14--34 freewheel. Would my derailleur handle that? What special tools would I need? Danger points? Thanks
  7. On my analog bike, I use mini toe clips to keep the ball of my food centered over the pedals. My Step has folding pedals which are terrific when loading the bike in my car, but there's no way that I know of to add these clips due to the construction of the pedals. Anyone have an idea how I could do this? I've been cycling with ordinary running shoes but the flexible soles which make them great for walking and running are not optimal for cycling, where a (more) rigid sole would transfer more energy to the pedals. What are folks here wearing? FWIW-- I'm riding paved roads, sometimes steep, and an occasional flat dirt/gravel path. I don't want shoes with cleats, which I couldn't use with my folding pedals anyway.
  8. Warmer weather is coming and I'm eager to do this! How fan I tell whether I need a cassette or freewheel? How big a deal is making the change once the rear wheel is off? Special tools? I have the basics. Would I be better off letting the LBS do it,if they're willing to work on an electric that they don't carry, and didn't sell? This is just mechanical work, not part of the electric system.
  9. I've been loving my Step since I got it in August. I ride mainly on pavement,occasionally a dirt path. Nothing mountain-bikey. So far, only one long steep hill has made me get off and walk it up, which I'm pretty happy with since at nearly 70 I'm no young'n. Still, I'd like to conquer those occasional tough hills a bit easier so I'd like to change my gearing. I thought of adding a smaller chainwheel, but that would be too complicated if I tried to add a front derailleur. Someone suggested a new cassette/freewheel which seems a more practical solution. I wouldn't want to lose my highest gears, but if I could switch to a cassette with a lower "granny" gear (or in my case, grandpa gear) that would be terrific. This brings up some questions; 1) what is the tooth count of my stock cassette? They're not listed on the website, and I'd rather not get all dirty counting them manually if I don't have to . 2) how much larger of a low gear could the derailleur handle without having to modify or replace the chain? 3) What would be involved with making the change once I had the rear wheel off the bike? I'd love answers to these, plus any other hints and tips y'all might have.
  10. Does she hope to sit on the saddle and be able to reach both feet to the ground? Ain't gonna happen and even if she could lower the seat enough she wouldn't be able to extend her knees far enough to pedal efficiently. Using the curb as Reddy mentioned is one option,as is stepping forwards off the saddle when she stops. It's about practicing technique and getting comfortable before heading out on the road. I'm a super short guy at 5'2", and I've adapted to the point where I'm totally comfortable on my Step. I have my saddle set for the most efficient (for me) pedaling. One other thing I've done is turn my handlebars upside down,adjusting everything on the bars for the new position. This lowers the bars to just about the same height from the ground as the bars on my non electric bike. My saddle is only an inch or so higher than the analog bike saddle too. The Step frame LOOKS huge, but side by side the pedals,saddle and handlebars are pretty close.
  11. I'm curious what pressure people are using in their Step bikes? How much does reducing the pressure for a cushier ride increase the rolling resistance? Is it possible to take the battery out of the bike and charge it indoors? Any advantage or disadvantage to this? Thanks,.
  12. Thanks. I'll try that. It occurred to me, but I didn't want to force anything. BTW Reddy-- are you with Sondors? You seem to have a LOT of answers.
  13. I tried to remove the handlebar end plug so I could install a mirror. There's a ring holding the plug, held by a hex head screw. I loosened, then removed the screw but the band and plug won't move. I didn't want to force anything. What am I missing here?
  14. I'm guessing that my Step will arrive with a printed assembly and operation manual. Is there any way to get this now in the form of a PDF file so I can start seeing what I'm in for, and maybe ask questions before the bike arrives. I know there are videos but I'd like something I can print.
  15. I don't have my Step yet, but am expecting it on 8/28. Question-- what's it like pedaling a Step with no battery assist at all due to drained battery or malfunction? I know they're heavy compared to my analog bike. I'm guessing that with the right gear, flat roads or slight upgrades would be manageable. What about steeper hills? I'll feel more inclined to take longer rides if I am confident that I could pedal home,worst case scenario.
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