Rider Stories: Bill Moulton - half the time, twice the freedom

Bill Moulton is one of our first MODMO customers. Since COVID he has been working from home and yet he says he is moving about more than ever because of the mobility his Saigon bike brings him.

Bill received his Saigon bike in April and has been riding it since the day he took it out of the box. We caught up for a chat to hear more about his feedback and what the Saigon has brought to his daily life.

Bill, one of MODMO's first customers, reviews the Saigon

Why did you invest in a Saigon bike?

I needed something to be able to get home quick with minimum effort because I didn't want to show up everywhere pumping sweat. So that was probably one of the main reasons I got it.

Since then, it has given me a lot more freedom because it kind of cut my transport in half. I live in the city centre in Dublin so obviously there's a lot of congestion and a lot of traffic. With the Saigon bike, I'm able to go home to where my parents live in the suburbs in 35 minutes where it used to take an hour on a crowded, disgusting sweaty bus.

You can buy our bikes exclusively through our website, MODMO.io. You can also visit List n Ride locations in cities across Germany to try a Saigon e-bike before you invest. We are working on expanding these test rides outside Germany so that everyone will get a chance to take their Saigon S or Plus for a spin before they buy - check out our FAQs for more on current List n Ride locations and subscribe to our email newsletter for regular updates on where we expand to next. We’ll keep you updated!

What features or functions of the bike really stand out to you?

For me it’s the integrated lights. On my push bikes my lights would get stolen, or I’d lose them or they fall off or something like that, and having the lights integrated into the bike just makes it so much easier. And obviously it looks really cool as well, and they’re really bright.

With the tires, I’m yet to get a puncture, and I used to get punctures, honestly, every week, so it's really handy just having a bit of trust in the wheel.

The tyres on both our models are Kenda 700c x 40 with K-Shield puncture protection. Check out the Saigon S and the Saigon + for more information on their specs and all the trusted partners we work with. You can also visit this blog post for information on how we are re-thinking urban mobility.

Are you a cyclist or is getting around by bicycle a totally new concept for you?

I used to have a fixie bike with the one gear and I also cycle the city bikes around Dublin - the ones that you can just pick up and go. I wouldn't want to leave a bike anywhere in the city center to be honest just in case it got robbed so I like to just cycle the bike from A to B and leave it.

Where do you most often use your Saigon?

Well I had a month off work in July so I was honestly hopping on the bike for maybe 60 kms every day just cycling home, cycling to see my friends, going to the gym. The Saigon is surprisingly light as well - I have to carry it on my shoulder up four flights of stairs to get home every day and with the Saigon it's not a problem.

I went on a bit of a cycling trip through Ireland the other week too and that was the first time I used up the full battery on the bike. We didn't want to exercise too intensely because we did a whole weekend of it so it was nice to have the option to just take it easy and drive through with pedal assist, and obviously get there a lot more quickly than on a pushbike. We'll definitely be doing more of those trips further down the road.

As dramatic as it sounds, the Saigon has definitely changed my life in the last few months, just by opening up a lot more doors and giving me a lot more freedom. I’m definitely looking forward to the next few models ahead as well. Hopefully one with suspension!

MODMO customer Bill, daily cycling (left) and road-tripping (right)

Daily cycling (left) and road-tripping (right)

That raises the question of security with your Saigon - how do you feel about our anti-theft functions?

I just think that it's a great idea. In Dublin city a lot of bikes are stolen, it’s pretty bad. I bought a motorbike lock, a big chain, just to make it a lot more difficult for my Saigon to get robbed. So I think the app function is unreal - to be able to get the notification on your phone and if your bike does get robbed, you can just give the location to the police or you can go there yourself.

A bit of extra security as well with an alarm on the bike or something would be cool too.

We agree an alarm would be awesome and this is something we are thinking about implementing for future models. Again, we have lots of options for staying up to date with our news so make sure you subscribe or follow if this is something you would like to do.

Have you needed to repair your bike and what was that like?

Yes but a lot of the bike shops around Dublin don’t work on electric bikes so I had rang a good few bike shops before I found one.

We are setting up repair partners on the ground in Europe to make it easier for MODMO customers to find great, trusted bicycle repair shops. More to come soon!

Did you face any difficulties setting up your Saigon?

It came assembled in a big box and I think all I had to do was attach the paddles and straighten the handlebars. That was all well-explained in the manual and it was really easy to do. Then I just had to wake up the bike by plugging it in for a few seconds. ​​

For me, the description of how to take out and put in the battery could have been a bit better explained, especially with that little handle that was loose on mine.

The best way to charge the battery for any of our e-bike models is to plug it in via the mod cap. That being said, sometimes it is useful to be able to take the battery out and bring it with you to a power plug that you may not have been able to reach if the battery was still inside your bike.

We have lots of How To videos on our youtube channel that go into depth about various aspects of our bikes and removing and installing the battery is one of them. Please check out the video regarding batteries here and please feel free to hit subscribe for easy access to all of our How To’s. You can also contact customer service on hello@modmo.io if there is a How To you would like to see that we don’t yet cover.

Daily cycling (left) and road-tripping (right)

Do you have other points of feedback for us?

I’d love some suspension. The roads in Dublin are terrible, there are so many potholes and cracks and it's just such a bumpy ride. The Saigon has held up pretty well but if MODMO releases a bike with some suspension I will definitely get it - a bit of suspension will make a world of difference.

Right now we aren’t releasing a bike with suspension but we will definitely look into it down the line as we grow and develop new models. It was great to hear this feedback from Bill and we truly value the input of our customers in all aspects of our development, so if you have any ideas or requests please do email hello@modmo.io to let our customer service team know.

Bill also found the sidelights on the Saigon to be quite fragile. This is something we have adjusted for our later models and we are preparing to send out new sidelights in the coming months for existing customers who bought models with the original sidelights, so that they can update their bikes. Stay tuned.