In our spare moments, while eating meals or waiting for the next car’s order, we are continuing our research on what “vehicle” will replace our second car. We have found a few intriguing electric bike options and are looking forward to test driving them. Design elements that are desirable (for us) –
- Disc brakes – Brian doesn’t want to deal with brake fluid so hydraulic brakes are out and mechanical disc brakes are in.
- Less than $1600 – There are TONS of electric bike options. The lowest ones that we have seen that we like are around $1400, but they go up to nearly $10,000. With a $1600 or less price tag, we might eventually get two and park the Fit most of the time.
- Based on what we’ve spent so far this year, excluding our drive to Tucson once a month, we average about $60/month in gas for around-town travel ($720/year).
- We currently pay $54/month ($648/year) to insure the Smart car.
- If we were to extend the Smart car lease, we would continue paying $139/month ($1668/year).
- If you look at those numbers, basically the gas savings + insurance would pay for one electric bike and the lease payments would pay for a second.
- Cargo bike format vs. mountain bike format w/ rack – We have seen some super cool cargo bikes with integrated racks. With their stuff carrying capacity, they truly are a car replacement. However, because they’re often bigger and heavier and we will continue to have a car car, we are leaning away from this option. Something that might work better is a bike with a milk crate – big enough to grab groceries but not the focus of the bike design. But either way, we have to be able to carry some stuff.
- Mid-drive/Center-drive – based on research so far, Brian is prefers hub-drive motors over mid-drive due to simplicity and drive train redundancy (the hub motor and pedal systems are completely independent and thus if one doesn’t work it has no effect on the other)
Brian started by removing the last panel we had connected on Sunday and applying the missing spray foam. [As we were falling asleep the previous night, Brian suddenly said, “I don’t think I sprayed the foam behind that last panel.” To which I replied, “Are you sure? I shook the can for 2 minutes and then handed it to you. Do you remember what happened at that point?”
Neither of us remembered whether he did it so he knew he had to check on Monday. Sure enough, no spray foam. That’s what happens when you work the whole day and let yourself get tired and hungry.]
Once that was done, he started on the east side. The first panel required a cutout for a cross beam. After cutting it, he realized it was nearly a half inch off (Gaaahhh!). Miraculously, it ended up working for the second panel that row instead – the crossbeam cut out was perfect.
A friend of ours popped over to see if he could be of service. With him there, Brian didn’t have to use The Paneling Ram and was able to move faster. With the first two panels out of the way, they went on to finish the entire wall!!! Psych…
They discovered that the panels that are supposed to go on the curved part of the bathroom walls don’t slide behind the arch-cut bathroom walls as they are. Although the bathroom walls were cut to fit with a piece of tri-ply attached to the wall where they intersect PLUS the required 1/8″ gap, the effect of the vertical furring strips was not accounted for – they change the smooth arch into a series of straight lines. The picture depicts it best.
Brian had a late start at the house due to an extended roast session at the shack. He spent some time figuring out how to fix our panel-bathroom collision problem. Thankfully, he was able to cut the panels back without removing them. It would have been a nightmare if he had had to remove the ceiling panel from the bathroom.
Another busy coffee day and a smaller house project window. In order to do the two panels behind the bathroom, Brian had to remove all our storage junk off the bathroom and transfer his work station up there. After a successful attachment process with the first panel, he found out that the next panel did need to be trimmed to accommodate a crossbeam. That was tricky given it was hidden in the framing for the bathroom.