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Equipment & Capabilities Relevant capabilities and equipment are table stakes for winning those hearts and minds.

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Old 07-13-2016   #21
Firn
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Just as short (tech) update:

1) Mighty Shimano enters the e-mtb engine market. A bit more info, arguably the best is in German. Seems to be step forward in terms of weight (almost 1kg less], size and chain stay length.

2) Other big brands like Fox and especially SRAM introduce specific e-mtb components, clearly a sign of how important a market electric MTB have become.

3) Electric bikes have pushed average sale prices thus turnover plus in some cases margins and supported the bottom line of bike companies which made some companies a more interesting investment opportunity.

It will be interesting to see if and how electric(motor)bikes might be used by the military and security forces (carabinieri, police etc) . There might be some attractive niches out there, most in conjunction with classic material and approaches.

P.S: I have been quite vague on the applications as it always depends. Bicycle patrols: an underutilized resource might be of interest. The effectivness of bike patrols varies with the security and geographical context. Electric assist might widen the geographical scope as well as allow more police personal to deploy in such a role.

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Tactical advantages

Also observed was a willingness by individuals or groups to stop or approach the bicycle officer to report an event or to indicate when the officer should come back to observe the illicit activity. Being in a position to know what was going on is a clear advantage. The stealth of police bicycle patrols is often cited as a superior tactical capacity. This was observed in the following example of a coordinated convergence in a housing complex.

The motor patrol officer assigned to an area suspected illegal activities were occurring at a specific apartment. The location of the apartment allowed a lookout to see a patrol car entering the apartment complex from a distance and to simply close the door to the apartment. Three bicycle patrol officers were able to come in from the opposite direction on a footpath and confront a man with drugs in his hand standing in the front door of the apartment.
An electric bike with a big battery obviously has the additional advantage to be potentially able to power or recharge a lot of the energy-consuming equipment of the officers. As stated before it is no magic bullet, just another tool which might be a 'force multiplier' in some contexts if you believe some of the published stats.
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Old 07-13-2016   #22
Firn
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As much of this thread is about technological aspects I think it is important to point out the key implication of the paper on bicycle patrols: It's mostly not about biketech but about thinking strategy, creating an organization and setting up training fit for the specific context. In short instead of money the key elements are intelligent questions, smart strategy and good execution.

Tech opens new opportunities, widens them, makes them more accessible. In this case an electric bike control with proper bikes is able to cover more types of (urban) environments, is able to move in them quicker with less fatigue, can support more (electronic) equipment and facilitates the training employment of not-so-fit officers. The recent developments in the electric bike market better performance and depress prices lowering the entry costs into bike patrols but in the end it's up to the people to make it work.
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Old 01-07-2018   #23
Firn
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A friend of mine in the voluntary (but well trained and prepared) Alpine rescue community has told me that an increasing number of teams are using ebikes with success. In some cases it is an official bike, but more often a personal bike.

I have found little official to support it. An Austrian example in German.

Some discussion here and there in English.

Informally so far the ebike mostly excelled at:

a) Getting speedily over narrow trails to a person in distress with considerable equipment and less effort.

b) Searching trails for missing persons or bringing manpower quickly in position for search and rescue operations.

In both instances information is obtained more rapidly and help given more quickly.

So basically in some key situations an ebike accelerates the speed of the mountain rescue action and allows a smarter use of other more costly resources. Needless to add that it is a new tool and does not directly replace other ones but augments them.

Firn
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Old 01-07-2018   #24
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Default Will the PLA use e-bikes?

Firn,

Having visited Shanghai in 2017 and noticed the profusion of e-bikes and e-scooters (avoiding the pollution from engines), I wonder if the PLA will adopt e-bikes for their mountain region forces.
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Old 01-07-2018   #25
Firn
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Quote:
Originally Posted by davidbfpo View Post
Firn,

Having visited Shanghai in 2017 and noticed the profusion of e-bikes and e-scooters (avoiding the pollution from engines), I wonder if the PLA will adopt e-bikes for their mountain region forces.
Obviously I have no idea but some basic thoughts:

1) Overall China is by far, far, far the biggest producer and consumer of ebikes and e-scooters. Almost all is focused on city transport. Mainland China is the production hub for most bike parts..

2) Europe and arguably the German speaking mountain areas in specific are by far the number one users of electric mountain bikes. The eMtb engine leader Bosch and the likely best selling eMtb trade markes are from southern Germany.

3) Much depends on the specific circumstances. China covers a huge area and all sorts of border areas from wet jungle hills to the dry highlands of Tibet and the Steppes. For example in the vast West normal motorbikes should be more suited.

4) Actually I'm curious if a European nation will try them out for mountain/light infantry units. With enough purchase power and an increasingly large amount of eMbt around somebody within the military should get ideas. Overall our road network is dense but even in my area there are many suited trails which can not be used by ATVs. A problem with all military bikes should be night riding without those big LEDs.

I now found an article about the first German forest guard? using an electric fatbike without suspension + trailer.

It is especially used for various controls and checks, the area you can cover increases, you are quicker and have to schlepp less. When the wetter is bad or cold the car is prefered.

Firn
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Speech at the Kriegsakademie, 1935

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