Category Archives: Bicycle

Oh, and we’ve got Trek bikes

Since 2010, we’ve sold Trek electric bikes, beginning with the Trek 7200+, the Trek Valencia+ and the Trek FX+ all with BionX motors. Later, the  Trek T80+ was popular.

In recent years, Trek introduced the Trek XM700+ (with Bosch electronics), and the Trek Lift+ and Trek Conduit+ lines (with Shimano STEPS electronics); see our September 2015 post Trek’s back into e-bikes!

This season, we’re still carrying the Trek Lift+ and Trek Conduit+,  plus their new Verve+, also equipped with the Bosch system but at a more affordable price point and SuperCommuter+.


New this year, we also have a lineup of Trek’s bikes: their FX series, the Marlin series, the Verve series, as well as the Trek Roscoe for exploring the nearby Wissahickon.

Stop on by to try these and a range of accessories. Sorry, no apparel yet!

found! kids bikes by Cleary

My search for lightweight kids bikes in gender neutral colors ended when I met Jeff & David of Cleary Bikes.  Their Starfish is a balance bike, the Gecko has 12″ wheels, the Hedgehog has 16″ and the Owl 20″.  All have front and rear hand brakes scaled to fit smaller hands.  And are so much lighter than anything else we could find.  The 20″ Owl is about 8 pounds lighter than a comparable bike. The recent Bicycle Times magazine (issue 31 Oct 2014) had a good review of the Cleary Owl.


Please bring your favorite child to sample these new models; we’d love feedback from a small person.

checkout Jamis Bikes at PHEW!

Philly Electric Wheels continues to be the largest electric bike shop on the East Coast.  By popular demand, we’ve morphed into PHEW! A Bike Shop and also carry quite a few non-electric bikes, notable by Biria, Breezer, Fuji & Torker.   In 2014, we’re happy to announce that we’re adding Jamis Bikes to our lineup.


Jamis Bikes is based in Northvale NJ, was founded in 1979, and remains a family-owned business to this day.

We’re excitedly waiting for our initial Jamis order of these models:


  • Allegro Elite
  • Commuter 3
  • Commuter 3 Femme
  • Commuter 2
  • Commuter 2 Femme
  • Citizen 2
  • Citizen 2 Femme
  • Hudson Sport
  • Hudson Sport Step-Thru
  • Nemesis 650 Comp
  • Trail X3

Let us know if you’d like to come to our Jamis build party, or if there’s another Jamis model you’ve been dreaming about.

Of note is the Jamis Hudson, equipped with an intelligent brake distribution system by Slidepad, allowing you to engage the front and rear brakes with one hand.  See the Slidepad in action here.   And please come to PHEW! to test ride the Hudson and all of our Jamis Bikes.

BH Easy Motion electric bikes

I’ve been following BH E-Motion’s e-bikes for several years.  In the US, BH E-Motion is well known for their fitness equipment.  In Europe they’re also known for their e-bikes, which have 4 types of technology.

  • NEO RDS (Rear Drive System) Technology
  • BOSCH IBS (Integrated Bottom Bracket System) Technology
  • PANASONIC IBS (Integrated Bottom Bracket System) Technology
  • EASY MOTION FDS (Front Drive System) Technology

This past September, while at InterBike (the national bicycle convention), I had the opportunity to test ride all of these systems.

The revolutionary Neo RDS technology uses a 350W motor (1 on the diagram). This was a nice powerful motor in the rear of the bike with the torque sensor (2) located in the rear drop out of the frame. This registers the force exerted by the rider and sends a signal to the controller (4). This action is fast.

9 days left to test EVELO Aurora at Philly Electric Wheels

An EVELO electric bike arrived at our store on Tuesday, looking like our FedEx team had been test dropping the box!  Though the battery casing was cracked open, we were impressed with how easy it was to assemble the bike.   Taking the opportunity of the cracked case, we ended up taking it apart and examining the inside.  More on that discovery in a bit.

The bike PHEW! received was the EVELO Aurora with a NuVinci N360 hub.  Our initial around-the-block test ride was positive; the pickup impressive.

Later today, I’ll be taking this bike for a longer ride along the hills of Mt Airy.  Look for a report on Friday.

Back to our discovery on the EVELO battery… Opening the battery case for the EVELO Aurora was an easy task since it was nicely secured with 5 screws.  If you already own an EVELO, we do not recommend opening the battery case yourself as it would void your warranty! Inside, we found lithium batteries weighing just 8 pounds. The battery cells looked unharmed.  We were impressed with the packaging of the battery cells.

Rechargeable batteries power all electric bikes, and eventually need replacing, just like the batteries in cell phones.  Often, it’s hard to find replacement batteries.  With the modular packaging of the EVELO batteries, when the time comes, we should have many options for replacement cells. EVELO currently provides an 18 month warranty on their battery packs.

20% off select BionX conversion kits

We feel the BionX kits offer the best electric bike experience.   To show you, we’ve converted five different bikes in various frame sizes & styles with BionX kits.  

Stop by for a 2 mile guided ride with Afshin to judge for yourself.  Afterward, some people choose to rent one of these converted bikes for the weekend, to try around their own neighborhood or on a commute.

Here’s what one person wrote after testing a number of electric bikes.

“The most important thing is that I want to feel like I’m riding a bike. Those first 3 bikes, even while in lowest assist mode, felt like glorified motorcycles. I couldn’t even find a way to get a workout without the bike forcing me to go way too fast. (The Pedego was the worst; it takes off when you are standing next to the bike if the pedal happens to turn.) Finally I rode a BionX and it was completely different and just what I was looking for! I was actually riding the bike myself (what a concept!), and it just helped me get up hills.” Read in entirety here.

This fall, PHEW! has select BionX kits for 20% off our everyday price.

BionX PL 250 DT M   |   $1,199 on sale for $956
BionX PL 350 DT L   |   $1,699 on sale for $1,359
BionX PL 350 RR L   |   $1,799 on sale for $1439

To top it off, we extend the 20% discount to any product or service we offer when you purchase a BionX kit.  We offer same day conversion service.  For this, we recommend you call us before arriving with your bike!

First Annual Blessing of the Bikes

Rev Aisha, pastor at Mt Airy Presbyterian Church, led the region’s First Annual Blessing of the Bikes yesterday. 

Blessing of the Bikes is an event that originated at the Cathedral of St John the Divine in New York City in 1999, traveled to Baldwin Michigan, and discovered by Brent of the Mt Airy Presbyterian Church. A full history of this event can be found here.

We prayed in unison to

  • …empower us to honor the legacy  of the Earth’s abundance
  • …help us build communities that are safe & healthy for every being created
  • …inspire us to envision societies that will sustain life for generations to come
  • …may these riders be kept safe,
  • …may their lives further reflect commitment to stewardship
  • … and may the wind blowing through their hair and on their faces ever remind them of you

And it got better.

Present in a world groaning under the excesses of consumption, we acknowledged the simple beauty of the bicycle. Present in the community of beautiful diversity, we asked for protection and blessing on all who ride: pedi cabbies, weekend warriors, athletes, students, children, eco-warriors, anarchists, bike messengers and all others who take to the streets of Philadelphia.

A beautiful morning indeed as cyclists pedal into their week.

Introducing Worksman Cycles – Made in USA since 1898

Starting with Dahon & Origin8, we have been adding to our line of folding bikes. Last year, we decided to carry the Xooter line. Xootr is a Pennsylvania manufacturer of scooters and folding bikes. Earlier this year, we brought in Montague‘s line of full size folding bikes, bikes that can be used as mules and can  carry a load upward of 300lbs.

This week, we became an authorized dealer for Worksman Cycles and will soon have their blue 3-speed folding bike at our shop.

Worksman bikes, made in New York City, are best known for their commercial tricycles used to sell ice cream & water ice  – perfect for the upcoming hot season.

The Worksman folding bike, pictured above, comes in 4 configurations: single speed, 2 speed, 3 speed & 7 speed.  Will report back when we actually get to test ride one at PHEW!

FMB Folding Bike Single Speed $309
FMB2CB Folding Bike 2 Speed “Kickback” $369
FMB3CB Folding Bike 3 Speed $369
FMB7CB Folding Bike 7 Speed $529c

Volkswagen and Lexus explore E-bike concepts

Aside from being a recreational tool, electric bikes are emerging as effective tools for transportation. Here at PHEW, we see e-bikes as commuting machines and most of our bikes come with full fenders, cargo racks and lights to make them as functional and practical as possible.

We also carry some folding bikes, which work great for riders who commute using several forms of transportation. They fold up small enough to be allowed on rush hour trains and subways, and they can be taken on the bus even when its bike rack is full. They also work great for people who travel long distances by car, then also need to travel locally once they arrive, since folding bikes are a cinch to store in a car’s trunk.

The car maker Volkswagen just came out with an electric scooter concept that could make commuting a lot more convenient for many people.

Aside from its interesting look, the VW scooter is innovative because it can be connected to the car’s DC power supply, so the user can charge the scooter while driving to the train station or parking area.

The main catch, of course, is that it is a scooter, meaning that it can’t be pedaled to extend its range or to propel it once the battery is exhausted. This is still a concept though, so hopefully VW will make it a true e-bike if they decide to put it into production.

Moving from the supremely practical to the blatantly frivolous, Lexus displayed a radical new e-bike that features a full carbon fiber frame, belt drive, and twin motors which make the bike all-wheel drive.

The concept was created as a joint venture with motorcycle maker Yamaha, and from the sound of the video report, the bike is more or less made by Yamaha and branded by Lexus.

We doubt that VW and Lexus will be the only car manufacturers to be getting into light electric vehicles, so we’re going to stay tuned to see what else comes out in the future.

Bicycle Touring, couch surfing, and ways to meet strangers

This past weekend I played host to a couple of young guys who were cycling across the US to raise money for autism research. Will and Alex are from Kenya and London, respectively, and had never been bicycle touring or even visited the US before embarking on their trip.

From Philadelphia 2009-2010

Their blog is here, where you can read more about their cause and check on their progress across the the US.

It was interesting meeting these guys for a couple of reasons.  For one, I have been the guest of many random people while bicycle touring so it was gratifying for me to turn the tables and do my best to provide some bike tourists with food, beer and shelter.

The other cool part about the interaction is that they found me through a website called Couch Surfing, which connect allows travelers to search for people willing to host them. The idea is to help travelers get acquainted with where they’re visiting, save them some money, and for hosts and travelers to meet new, interesting people from all over the world.

It definitely isn’t for everyone, but if you’re game to host or be hosted by a perfect stranger, I recommend it.

So check out if you want to follow Will and Alex or donate to their cause.