RAGBRAI LI July 20 -27, 2024

E-Bikers, A Few Etiquette Improvements

I was going up a hill with many other riders in the area. Passing some when I heard a woman on a 3 wheel trike yelling to move over to get past. So a bunch of us put in the extra effort to move out of the way only for her and her partner following her to come past using motorized ebikes (motors fully engaged). Maybe ebikers instead of demanding others get out of their way especially on extra wide 3 wheelers could just fit in while the rest of us under our own power make it up the hills. Instead of expecting us to put in extra effort to allow them to motor past us. I think there needs to be some rules of etiquette going forward for ebikers.

This was not a couple who had special needs for a motor assist. They just chose ebikes to make RAGBRAI easier for them

138 Replies

T. Gap Woo, January 20, 2020 at 3:23 pm

[quote quote=1314501]An etiquette question; is the “side eye” equivalent to the “stink eye”?


The “side eye” and “stink eye” are closely related to the “hairy eyeball”, all of which are useful when “throwing shade” at someone.

I hope that clears things up. If not, try Visine or Murine.

See you along the I-O-Way in July.


LawnchairMan, January 20, 2020 at 5:37 pm


Thank you for posting the Iowa bike law pertaining to ebikes.

I have posted the following earlier, but can’t find it on this thread.
According to the wording of that statute, power assist ebikes would not qualify as bicycles.
“when powered solely by such a motor while ridden, is less than 20 miles per hour.”
This means that the ebike would have to be powered without pedaling. Since an assist ebike has to be pedaled to get extra power, it couldn’t be ridden “solely powered by such a motor.” And you would never be able to tell how fast the ebike would go self powered. So only throttled ebikes could qualify. I think that would eliminate more than half of the ebikes out there. Just my not so humble opinion.

I’ve given up fighting against ebikes on Ragbrai. I didn’t notice them last year. Maybe ebikers don’t hit the road as soon as I do, or I just couldn’t tell the difference. If I ever have a bad encounter with an ebiker I will deal with it on an individual basis. I just hope we all can ride cautiously and as safely as we can.

PS one of the two ebikers in our local club has graduated to human powered only. Yay!


Sandaltan ., January 21, 2020 at 12:21 pm

Thank you T.G. Woo for a prompt and concise reply. Daddy Woo has fathered a fine son.



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