The Rambler from CaddieBike is one of the coolest golf items I have ever tested! Being an avid cyclist and golfer, a bike made for golfing is the perfect blend of my passions.
You’ve probably seen courses offering scooters, golf boards, cycles and other unique modes of golf transportation recently – alternative ways to tour the course are becoming a really popular trend these days. I have been extremely impressed with the CaddieBike so far and will detail my experience here.
“I am not handy. Am I going to be able to assemble this myself?” While this question may be top of mind, I can honestly say from the time I opened the box till I was ready to ride the bike was under 15 minutes. All the tools you will need are included and there is an easy to follow digital instruction guide for setup. Once assembled, keep in mind the Rambler weighs in at around 70 lbs, so this will not be something you’ll easily throw in your car to take to the course. You are going to need to ride it to the course you’re playing or have a hefty bike rack on your car.
Take a look at the time lapse below to see just how easy it is to assemble the Rambler.
The Rambler is powered by a 750 watt rear hub motor that delivers enough power to propel you at speeds up to 20mph. Offering 2 battery options with ranges from 25-40 miles and 40-70 miles you will not have to worry about making it through a round or even two. The convenient power gauge lets you know just exactly how much battery you have left, and if for some reason you do run out you can always pedal manually!
Charging the Rambler is easy and convenient with an accessible plug behind the seat. You will want to leave it plugged in to charge overnight, but as long as you are habitual about charging batteries you won’t have any issues.
You shouldn’t ever have to remove the battery, but if you choose to it is secured with a lock, giving you the confidence that it won’t walk away if you leave your bike parked somewhere.
Spending many years maintaining and building my own bikes I was excited to review the components of the Rambler. A Shimano 7-speed shifter provides enough range for you to pedal through all terrain while the disc brakes will allow you to stop in a hurry. The brakes did take about 15 miles to break in and get rid of their new-bike squeak, but I am happy to report that everything is smooth now. I was really impressed with the overall quality of the bike elements and the ease at which I’m able to do some basic maintenance.
The front suspension held up nicely when I purposely found some holes, roots and bumps out on the course. The padded adjustable seat held up great and I didn’t have any discomfort sitting on the bike for 18 holes. You will also stay clear of water and grass with the oversized front fender.
The Rambler does come with a built-in LED headlight for those early-morning or late rounds. I was quite impressed with the power of the light and, although you wont need it every time you play, it is very nice to have especially if heading home in the dark following your round
The Rambler’s electric power is controlled via a throttle and buttons on the left handlebar. I have been told by friends that use other power sports vehicles this takes a few holes to get used to as they are accustomed to these controls on the right side. Either way, the controls are simple and can be utilized in 3 different ways:
- A fully electric experience where the throttle control drives your whole ride and no pedaling is required
- An electric pedal assist offered in multiple strengths
- Walking the bike with assistance from the motor using the handlebar controls
My only concern with any of the components would be getting a flat tire out on the course. While you could probably get through the remainder of the round on a low air tire, repairing a fat tire bike like the Rambler on the go is no easy feat. Just make sure to check your tire pressure before each ride and you should be in good shape.
For the gadget and accessory hungry golfer there are plenty of options made to fit the Rambler. From baskets to speakers, divot bottles and phone holders you can completely deck out your bike for the course. All of the accessories mounted securely on the bike with included bolts and clamps.
I’ve found the basket to be the most useful accessory for on the course, holding my headcovers, jacket and other loose items. The Amp Caddy speaker is a great addition to add some great tunes as you cruise down the fairway. I personally wish it came loaded with “Bicycle Race” by Queen and “Born to Be Wild” by Steppenwolf as they perfectly fit the vibe as you ride.
Heading to the Course
Taking the Rambler on the course is where the real fun begins. Before you arrive at a course on the CaddieBike I would recommend calling ahead. While I had no problem getting some of my local courses to agree and let me ride, there were some concerns about safety, liability and course wear.
The oversized tires on the Rambler leave less impact than a normal cart tire. I even had the head Superintendent try riding the bike across the green and he was happy to report that he’d have no concerns with it riding anywhere.
Between shots the CaddieBike can be parked using the built-in kickstand. I initially had to tinker with the adjustments on the stand to get just the right angle for the bike to feel secure, and also found that turning the tire when parking the bike helped with stability. There are some nuances to parking the bike just right, including on hills and soft ground. After your first 2 rounds it won’t be an issue, though, as it will become second nature.
The Rambler is whisper quiet. No one is going to be disturbed or hear the bike at all on the course. Your clubs will rattle a bit when you hit uneven terrain, but at the same volume as if you were riding in a normal golf cart.
The top speed of the Rambler is 20 mph, which believe me is fast. I’ve had no problems outpacing standard golf carts or riding laps around my walking friends. If you do choose to use the bike while others are walking, the overall stability allows you to pedal at a slow enough pace to keep alongside your foursome.
Golf and More
You may be asking yourself, “besides golf, is this something I can use off the course?”
The CaddieBike is one of the first purpose-built golf e-bikes, enabling you to not only get to the course but play your round on it. The back bag mount is secured with two bolts that can be easily removed to turn the CaddieBike into a “normal” e-bike for transport when riding the streets.
Worth the Investment?
Watch this video and tell me you don’t want one!
The CaddieBike is an investment with prices starting just under $2,500 for the lower-range battery model. All I can say is that if you live on or near a course you are going to want one of these. It fundamentally changes the way you get around the course, and the freedom you experience while riding the Rambler will have you loving it more than golf itself.
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