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Frequently asked e-bike questions

E-bike - Silverback Bikes

How long will the battery last? Can I wash it? What kind of maintenance does an e-bike require? With the growing popularity of electric bikes, you might be getting a little curious. Here is a list of questions we often get asked regarding e-bikes…

  • What is the lifespan of an e-bike battery?

Naturally, this depends on the frequency you use your e-bike and how you take care of it. It also depends on the battery brand your bike is fitted with. Rule of thumb is 1000 full cycled charges, that is about 45 000km at boost setting (maximum assist)

  • Do e-bikes recharge when going downhill?

There are a couple of electric bike motors on the market that recharges when you are using the brake but this only really extends your range by 5%. Currently, none of our bikes features a recharging motor.

Silverback S-Electro Sport - e-bike battery
  • How fast can an e-bike go?

According to the European Union, the maximum speed an e-bike is allowed to go is 25km/h in the US 20mph is the speed limit. Technically the motor can go faster but most e-bike ESC’s stop providing power at 25km/h.

Electrical bike laws differ from country to country, click HERE to see what the speed limit is in your country.

  • What is the range of a battery?

This depends on a couple of factors, how you ride, the terrain you are riding as well as the level of assist you ride in. On average you should be able to do between 40km to 95km on a single charge.

  • Can I ride my e-bike without the battery?

Yes, it will be a normal bicycle once the battery is removed or switched off. 

Maintaining your e-bike

  • What maintenance does an e-bike require?

This differs depending on the brand of the drive system your bike uses.

– The Shimano system is sealed and has no serviceable parts.

-The Bafang service light comes on every 5000km, this is generally when the system should be serviced. This service is very basic and includes things such as new grease and cleaning out the system.

  • How to wash your e-bike and the use of water with electrical components.

Washing an e-bike requires a little bit more care than other bikes.

– No high-pressure water or direct stream of water should be used on your e-bike, as both will force water into any crevasses.  Using a bucket of water with a cloth is more than enough to clean.

– Also, avoid using silicone spray / anti-corrosion spray, it may seep into some components and eventually interfere with the electronics.

*Neither the Bafang or Shimano is waterproof so don’t go swimming with your e-bike.

  • Should I completely drain my battery before recharging it?

No, you don’t need to. Lithium-Ion does not suffer from the ‘memory effect’ so charging your battery before it is flat will not affect its longevity. It is best to charge the battery after every ride regardless of whether it is depleted or not. However lithium-ion batteries will last longer if not fully cycled regularly.

  • Where should you take the battery if you have any issuers?

If you pick up any issues with your motor, display or battery, you should take it back to your dealer, the same as with any other issues. Your dealer will asses the problem and submit a warranty claim if necessary.

If we haven’t answered your question, let us know in the comment section below. Be sure to check out our full range of e-bikes HERE.

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7 Awesome records set on bikes

Trail Sphere Comp - Silverback Bikes

Multi-tasking

Arumugam PK from Chennai, India set the record for solving the most Rubik’s cubes whilst riding his bicycle. He managed to solve 1010 cubes in a time of 6 hours. Helmets off to this guy, we can’t even solve a Rubik’s cube off the bicycle!

Take the stairs

The most steps climbed on a bicycle was achieved by Krystian Herba from Poland in October 2016. Krystian managed to climb 3461 steps by hopping his way up the stairs in the Willis Tower, Chicago.

Riding for a purpose

In 2016 73 year old Russell Elder, set the record for attending the most static cycling classes in one year. He attended 532 classes in aid of Macmillan Cancer Support.

Russell, you need a change of scenery! View our range of bicycles online and get yourself a real bike: Silverback Bikes.

Jumping hurdles

On 26 August 2013, Thomas Öhler from Austria hopped his way into the record books by taking on a 400m hurdle track on his bike and completing it in a time of 44.62 seconds. The race took place at Gugl Games and he raced against Olympic gold medalist, Felix Sanchez. Thomas is also currently the record holder for the highest bike jump, jumping a height of 3m.

Around the globe

British cyclist, Mark Beaumont holds the record for cycling around the world in 79 days. He completed the 29 000km route on 18 September 2017.

The women’s record is held by Scottish endurance cyclist, Jennie Graham who circled the world in 124 days.

Hurt box

In May 2007, Austria’s Valentin Zeller aimed to set the record for the greatest vertical ascent in one day.  Valentin currently holds the record for cycling 19 025.13m in 24 hours. France’s Stéphanie Gros holds the female record for climbing a total 14,624.89m in a 24 hour period.

 Longest bicycle wheelie

Rich Flanagan currently holds 2 wheelie riding Guinness World records. The first one he covered 26km in an hour to set the record for the longest bicycle wheelie in an hour. The year thereafter Rich set another record by being the fastest person to wheelie 100m in 10.86 seconds.

Have you done something awesome on your bike? Tell us in the comment section below.

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Silverback Ladies Design (SLD)

Ladies Specific bike - Splash 2 top-tube - Silverback bikes

Silverback Ladies Design (SLD)

Anatomy studies has shown that on average, men are about 10% larger than women. They usually have longer limbs, bigger hands and their shoulders are broader than that of a female. With our Silverback Ladies Design (SLD) range our design engineers take these amongst other differences into consideration when designing and choosing spec for a bike. The aim is to give female cyclists a comfortable bike that is ready to be ridden.

To create the SLD range, our product engineers continuously analyse the feedback from different female rider. Taking into consideration the type of riding that the ladies enjoy.

Some possible differences between women’s bikes and men’s bikes:

  • Smaller frame sizes
  • Shortened stem
  • Shorter crank arms
  • Narrower bars
  • Female-specific seat
  • Smaller break leavers
  • Lower standover height
  • Thinner diameter grips
  • Colour options
Silverback Ladies Design (SLD)

Should all women be riding ladies specific bicycles?

No, ladies can easily ride any bicycles.  Just because a bike is not an SLD bike, does not mean that you will be uncomfortable on it. However, it is important for you to be comfortable and ergonomic on your bike. Many women do prefer a ladies-specific bike because it requires fewer adjustments to get their perfect fit on the bike. 

How will I know what is the right size bike for me?

 Easy! You can use our online Find Your Fit tool or visit your local bicycle shop to help you.

View our full range of SLD bikes HERE

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5th for Luke Moir at UCI World Champs

Luke Moir jumping into the air - Silverback Bikes

Congratulations to Luke Moir who finished 5th in the Junior men category at the 2019 UCI World Champs. The race took place on the 29 August in Mont Sainte Anne, Quebec, Canada.

Luke Moir racing at the UCI World Champs- Silverback Bikes
Flat tyre for Luke at UCI World Champs

Luke rode a perfect race, sticking with the lead group of 5 for the entire race. By the end of lap three, there were just four seconds separating the top five who had pulled away from the rest of the field. He was sitting with the 3rd place rider during the second half of the final lap but punctured. He slipped back and crossed the finish line in 5th position. This is still considered a podium finish.

Luke is currently racing in the U/18 category making him one of the youngest riders in the Junior men age group.

Mariske Strauss

Mariske Strauss took a tumble during the team relay event which resulted in a trip to the hospital. Scans show no major injuries but she will not be able to race further in the UCI World Champs. Follow her on Instagram to find out more: @mariskestrauss

Both these athletes chose race our new dual-suspension marathon bike the Stratos. Find out more about the bike: HERE

#SilverbackBikes #BornToBeFast

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Asymmetric design

Stratos XCO Mountain Bike - Silverback Bikes

Asymmetric design: If the forces in the bike aren’t symmetrical, why should the bike be?

On a bicycle, the drivetrain is mounted on the right side, the brakes on the left side, and the suspension (usually) around the centre. When riding, the environment influences the wheels, and consequently the suspension and frame. When braking, it inflicts major forces on the left side of the bike, whereas acceleration and pedaling affect the right side of the bike.

Asymmetric design does away with the conventional stigma that a frame must be mirrored from drive side to non-drive side.

Reinforced where it’s needed, lightened where it isn’t – allow for a frame that is just as stiff, but lighter.

Asymmetric tubes allow for the dispersion of shock forces between the top tube and downtube. At the riding sag point, most of the shock forces are directed along the top tube. At suspension bottom-out, the rear shock rotates and shock forces are split between the top tube and downtube via the single-sided support strut.

XC Mountain bike ft asymmetric geometry - Stratos CF SBC - Silverback Bikes

Support

Support Strut (Shock brace) redistributes bottom out forces between the top tube and the downtube, which in turn is triangular for a more regular force distribution. By reducing peak stresses at points in the frame, the entire bike can be constructed lighter.

Power delivered through the drive train is drive-side bias. Braking on disc rotors are non-drive side bias. To add to this, your average rider does not have equal power output in both his or her legs, but we’ll stick to the design points we have control over as designers.

On a full suspension bike, this becomes even more important to have ‘balanced’ kinematic through the middle plane of the frame, that is not bias toward the drive or non-drive side. The drive side sees long periods of loading, of relative low to medium force. Where the non-drive side sees momentaneous loading, of a far higher magnitude.So very different forces – localized to a specific side.

Larger bearing used on the drive side, which has to contend with chain forces as well.

“Quickdraw” bottle placement. Presents the bottle to the rider, where it can be seen and easily staken/stowed. Clint Eastwood didn’t carry his gun in the middle…

The Stratos is strongly based on this philosophy with profiles favoring strength towards the non-drive side.

Nothing in nature is symmetric. Riding forces are not symmetric. Why should your bike be?

View our full range of Asymmetric bikes HERE

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5 Mountain bikes under €1500

Head badge - Silverback Bikes

Choosing a mountain bike is tough! There are so many things to consider. We thought we would help you out, by compiling a list of bicycles to consider when you are on a budget. Here is our value for money buys that will get you to shredding in no time.

 

Stratos AL5 (€1499)

The Stratos AL5 is a value packed dual suspension mountain bike. Featuring the same highly capable suspension platform as our top-end xc racing bikes. The AL5 is an affordable introduction into racing. Equipped with a standard metric shock, tapered head tube as well as a 150mm dropper post, therefore this bike is easy to upgrade as your riding progresses.

This dual suspension mountain bike has a 120mm front fork. This caters for the evolving cross-country course and the growing trail riding movement. It also gives confidence on technical terrain. 

Spec highlights:  RockShox Judy Silver, Internal dropper post ready, asymmetric frame design, Surface rims and Surface alloy control parts

Competitor Pricing: €1400 – €1700

https://silverbacklab.com/

Read more about this bike: Ready, set, Stratos AL 5.0 

Silverback Stratos AL5 Mountain Bike

 

Stratos AL5

 

Slade Trail (€1399)

If riding trails and going downhill fast is more your thing, the Slade Trail is what you should be looking at. Featuring our sweet spot geometry, this bike promises uncompromising climbing and prowess descending. Tyre compatibility is 27.5×2.8″ or 29″ up to 2.6″ wide, giving plenty of setup options and creating our most versatile hardtail ever. 

The Slade Trail’s slightly heavier brother, the Slade Comp comes in at €899. The major difference between these two mountain bikes being the fork and the wheelset.

Spec highlights: Dropper seat post, RockShox Revelation Fork, Internal Cable routing, 1X11 Shimano drivetrain

Competitor pricing: €1500+

https://silverbacklab.com/product/slade-trail/

Silverback Slade Trail Mountain Bike
Slade Trail

 

Stride SX (€849)

The Stride SX features all the elements of a high-end mountain bike at a fraction of the price. The brand new 12 Speed SRAM SX Eagle drivetrain, give this bike a competitive edge over other mid-level bicycles. Designed with a slacker head angle of 67.5 degrees, this bike inspires confidence. It also guarantees improves handling over the technical terrain that modern cross-country tracks offer. 

Spec highlights:  Sram SX Eagle, Internal Dropper post ready, POP geometry, tubeless ready wheelset (rim tape and valves in the box)

Competitor price: €999 – €1120

https://silverbacklab.com/bike-model/mountainbikes/stride-275-sx/

Silverback Stride SX Mountain Bike

 

Sola 1

 

Sola 1 (€1499)

If you are interested in cross-country racing and you cannot justify the spend on carbon. We suggest you have a look at the very capable Sola 1.

Using race geometry, this lightweight aluminium mountain bike frame gives the rider great stiffness for maximum pedal power. The 12X Sram GX Eagle gives you plenty of gear range, ideal for the steep climbs and technical descends a cross country track offers. 

If 12 speed drive-train doesn’t excite you or your budget is tight, you can always consider the Sola 2 selling for €1199). The major difference between these two bikes being the drive-train and heavier wheels on the Sola 2.

Spec highlights:  Sram GX Eagle, RockShox Judy Silver, Thru Axle dropouts, boost hubs, Internal Cable routing

Competitor price: €1100 – €1500

https://silverbacklab.com/bike-model/mountainbike/sola-1/

Silverback Sola 1 Mountain Bike

 

Spectra Elite

 

Spectra Elite (€1099)

Utilising similar geometry to the Sola range, the Spectra is also a Cross-country platform. This bike is designed to give maximum pedal power in testing conditions.

Unlike the Sola range, the Spectra uses a QR axle and a 2×10 Shimano Drive-train. 

Rest of the products in the Spectra mountain bike range are all below €1000.

Spec highlights:  RockShox Judy Silver RL Fork, Internal Cable routing, 1×11 Shimano Drivetrain, boost hubs

Competitor pricing: €1120 – €1180

https://silverbacklab.com/product/spectra-elite/ 

Silverback Spectra Elite Mountain Bike

 

Caption

 

 #SilverbackBikes #BornToBeFast

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Women’s nutrition

Silverback Fairtree, ABSA Cape Epic prologue

5 NUTRITIONAL DIFFERENCES BETWEEN MEN AND WOMEN CYCLIST

It is obvious that there are physiological differences between men and women. Have you ever thought about how this affects our nutrition when on the bike?

Here is a list of key differences between men and women and how to manage it:

  • A recent study has shown that women riders process 25% more carbs from a sports drink than a male rider.

Carry adequate fuel during your training sessions. Thus be sure to eat or drink a sports drink containing carbs every 30-45 min

  • Carbo-loading doesn’t work for women as it does for men. Our bodies don’t have the same ability to store glycogen, turning the carbs into fat rather than energy.

Eat a healthy meal before your ride. Something like: peanut butter and syrup sandwich, oats or a lean cut of meat and veg (be careful not to overeat, you will want to be able to move). 

Eating fewer calories than you burn, might be necessary to lose weight but counting calories often lead to low energy levels. It is essential that you eat enough to fuel yourself especially on longer rides.

Use a calorie counter app like FatSecret or My Fitness Pal to track your calorie intake.

Mariske Struass warming up for the ABSA Cape Epic
Mariske Strauss

Nutrients

Women athletes are prone to iron deficiencies, especially during their menstrual cycle. This can lead to impaired muscle function, reducing performance. 

Increase the amount of iron-rich foods you eat like red meat, spinach, legumes, etc. 

Calcium is essential for the proper functioning of our heart, muscles, and nerves. The female body is prone to having lower levels of calcium than men. So, ensure you are getting enough calcium in your daily diet. 

Have 3 – 4 servings of dairy or calcium-rich foods daily. Some examples: milk, green leafy vegetables such as broccoli.

Jennie Stenerhag warms up for Cape Epic
Jennie Stenerhag

#SilverbackBikes #BornToBeFast

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10 Reasons you need a fatbike

fatbike, fat bike, beach, Mozambique

We have compiled a list of ‘must ride’ places around the world, that only a fatbike is suited for.

 

Silverback Fatbikes, Ireland

1. Explore the beaches of Ireland

The Wicklow coast of Ireland stretches the length of the country providing 60kms of spectacular scenery. The coastline covers soft sand, loose rocks, and puddles making it the perfect challenge for a fatbike.

 

Silverback Fatbikes, Northern Lights in Finland

 

2. Watch the Northern Lights in Finland

Originally designed to ride in the snow, the 4” tires of a fatbike allow you to ride in spectacular places like the Finnish Taiga, along frozen lakes and through prehistoric forests to explore the untouched wilderness of Lapland. Book a night in a glass igloo and experience the Northern Lights, one of the world’s most incredible natural phenomena.

3. Experience paradise in Mozambique

Mozambique is the ultimate African beach getaway, pristine white sandy beaches, warm Indian ocean away from the madding crowds.

fatbike will allow you to access remote beaches. Take along a mask & snorkel, a fishing rod, surfboard or even just a picnic basket. If you are lucky, you might even encounter a turtle.

 

Pedalling through the coastal paradise of Mozambique – Getaway

 

4. Indulge in Swiss Chocolate

Home to the annual Snow Bike Festival, Gstaad is perfectly equipped for fatbiking adventures. Fatbiking is permitted on the existing hiking routes and trails include some exciting downhill runs. After a day in the snow you can sit in front of the fire and try out the locally produced chocolates.

 

Silverback Fatbikes, Switzerland

 

5. Have fun in Dubai’s sand dunes

With the monster tires of a fatbike, you can now explore areas of the desert previously off-limits. With sand dunes as far as the eye can see, a fatbike can provide endless fun. Book a night at one of the Desert Safaries and spend the night under the stars.

Take along the S-Electro FAT to maximize the fun.

6. Tour Canada in any season 

No longer are you limited to riding trails in the summer, fatbiking allows adrenaline junkies to continue their riding through all seasons. Several bike parks are even creating fatbike dedicated winter trails.

7. Enjoy the beaches of the French Riviera

The French Riviera, known as one of the most incredible coastlines in the world with its pebble beaches and Crystal clear water is a perfect fatbike playground, allowing you to ride on the beach and through the coastal villages. You can not get the same views from a car, a bus or a train.

 

Silverback Fatbikes, French Riveria

 

8. Do the Yak Attack in Nepal

An eight-stage mountain bike race like no other! The Yak Attack takes place in the Himalayan mountains and is one of the highest mountain bike races in the word. Weather conditions vary from hot and dusty to freezing cold with possible snow, the perfect playground for a fatbike.

 

Silverback Fatbikes, Himalayan Mountains\

 

9. Ride the Skeleton Coast of Namibia

Known as the worlds largest shipping graveyard, the Skeleton Coast stretches the length of Namibia’s west coast. Most of this magnificent cost line is not accessible by vehicle and travelers wanting to experience the area need to do so by small aircraft. Taking along a fatbike so you can explore the dramatic desert and coastal scenery up close and personal.

With over 500km of the desert landscape to cover the S-Electro Fat will help you cover more mileage in a day.

10. Complete the Iditarod (or at least part of it)

Now, this one might not be everyone’s cup of tea, but it will truly be a once in a lifetime experience… and it’s only doable on a fatbike! The Iditarod is one of the most challenging experiences following the 1000mile route of a sled dog race in Alaska. The Iditarod can now also be completed on a fatbike.

 

Silverback Fatbikes, Alaska

 

Looking for more great adventure stories? Why not read: Bike Packing: Solo in his Sola

#SilverbackBikes #BornToBeFast

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Explore Dubai by bike

Known as a world-class shopping destination, with fast cars and ultra-modern buildings, Dubai is not known as a sporting capital. We do however know that there is no better way to explore a country than on a bicycle. Therefore we have compiled a list of recreational cycling routes to help you explore the city.

Explore Dubai by bike
Explore Dubai by bike

Jumeirah Beach

The Jumeirah Beach Bike path is a relaxing ride that runs along the beach with spectacular views of the iconic Burj Al Arab. The 2km path starts at Jumeirah Public Beach is extendable to a 14km ride by continuing to Umm Sequemm.

Our pick: Stride 29 MD & Spyke 24 Rigid

Jumeirah Beach
Jumeirah Beach

Dubai Canal

Keeping to the impressive architecture seen in the rest of the city, Dubai Canal is no different. The 3.2km long man-made canal includes running tracks, footpaths, cycling lane that showcase scenic views of the city.

Our pick: Stride 27 MD

Dubai Canal
Dubai Canal

Mushrif Park

Mushrif Park has a 5km dedicated cycling track that loops around the outer edge of the park. There are some interesting landmarks and café’s in the park where you can stop to rest your legs. The tarred track takes you through the dunes so expect some sandy patches.

Our pick: Stride 29 Sport

Nad Al Sheba Cycle Park
Nad Al Sheba Cycle Park

Nad Al Sheba Cycle Park

The Nad Al Sheba Park offers you the choice of 8km, 6km or 4km loops, perfect for riding circuits. The tracks are well lit at night, so we suggest you grab your night light and a picnic basket to watch the skyline of Downtown Dubai.

What we love about this spot is the 850m skills course for children, which is great for teaching little one’s road safety.

Our pick: Strela Sport & Spyke 20

Al Qudra Cycle Path
Al Qudra Cycle Path

Al Qudra Cycle Path

Situated in the Dubai desert, the Al Qudra cycling track is one of the most popular places to ride in the UAE. Track distances vary between 18km and 86km, taking you through spectacular landscapes of rolling sand dunes.

Our pick: Strela Elite

Riding sand dunes in Dubai
Riding sand dunes in Dubai

Sand Dunes

If you just want to have fun and do some exploring, we suggest you take a fatbike and go ride in the desert. The oversized tyres of a fatbikes can roll over almost everything and in this case will float through the sand effortlessly. Go further and explore more by getting an e-fatbike. 

Our pick: Scoop & S-Electro Fat

*Temperatures in Dubai can be hot and humid thus remember to drink plenty of water and always wear a helmet.

Read our top pick of destinations to ride with a fatbike: 10 Reasons you need a fatbike.

#SilverbackBikes #BornToBeFast #BestInClass

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Mariske Strauss crowned African MTB XCO Champ!

Mariske Strauss on the podium at the SA XCO

MARISKE COMPLETED THE SIX-LAP COURSE IN 1:23:39 AHEAD OF CHERIE REDECKER-1:25:39 AND CANDICE LILL-1:26:33.

Silverback rider, Mariske Strauss won the elite women’s race at the African MTB Cross-Country Championships. The race took place in Windhoek, Namibia, on Saturday the 13th April 2019.

She completed the six-lap course in 1:23:39 ahead of Cherie Redecker(1:25:39) and Candice Lill (1:26:33).

Mariske Strauss, South Africa, XCO
Post-race interview with Mariske Strauss

Photo: Ulla von Holtzz

“It was a challenging course, but absolutely fun. The track had loads of climbing and technical descent,” she said after the African mtb.

“The relay before the race was a good wake up for my leg, I felt super strong and ready to race. I led from the start which was fun to do.”

South Africa, Luke Moir, XCO
Luke Moir representing South Africa

Silverback rider, Luke Moir was unlucky. He picked up two punctures on the course, resulting in a fifth-place finish.

“I was super confident going into the race African mtb race. I posted a really good lap time during the team relays the evening before.”

“Unfortunately, I suffered on the fourth lap where I suffered a major puncture,” adds Luke.

He completed the race in 1:04:23 in the Junior men’s category.

“My Silverback Stratos handled the terrain very well. Now I am looking forward to the race season ahead of me,” adds after race at the African mtb race says Mariske.

Mariske has one more race in South Africa before she heads to Europe again.

#SilverbackBikes #SilverbackRacing #BornToBeFast