Over50's Tern GSD Chronicles

Over50

Well-Known Member
#1
Maybe premature to post this but pretty darn certain I'll be getting this bike next spring. I have two human powered Terns (well I have one and the wife has one) and I recently sold a third. I really wasn't in the market for a cargo bike but this bike pressed some buttons for me: fits a wide range of rider sizes (can get the wife riding electric), upright storage, lots of versatility/cargo configuration options, great range etc. I started imagining myself hauling a lot more groceries, Home Depot runs, or loading the bike in my Subaru and taking some long rides over a full day or two. And/or getting the wife taking long rides (never ridden an e-bike) with me using my other bikes. So I had a discussion with my LBS (mostly Trek but a few other brands) as my area only has/had one Tern dealer (20+ miles from my house). It was good timing because the LBS was already considering reaching out to Tern to become a dealer. The LBS sent folks to Interbike and I was told they were very impressed with the GSD. My expressing interest in the bike seemed to help them make their decision (they were interested that I was interested). So I'm waiting to hear from the LBS to confirm that they've finalized the relationship and if a deposit will be required for me to get in on their first order. I think the initial run will be around March followed by another in April or May. I think its going to be a big seller for the Tern folks - just personal opinion.
 

Over50

Well-Known Member
#4
An intriguing bike to be sure...do keep us posted.
So much cool stuff out there!
Yes, a lot of interesting stuff. My tentative/early plan for 2018 is to buy the GSD as an additional bike (wife bike, grocery hauler, 1 or 2 day tripper) and to perhaps pickup a new commuter mid-year, most likely as a replacement for either my R&M or the Haibike. For the new commuter I like the Haibike SDuro 9.0 to go dual battery with the in-tube and rail system and to replace my Haibike 4.0. If I replace my R&M, I lean to the R&M New Charger with in-tube battery (and Deore vs Nuvinci) as the leading candidate. As non replacement bikes, if I just add to the collection, then I like the Bulls full suspension commuter and the Moustache XRoads and Samedis.
 

Dmitri

Active Member
#5
I wanted to get a GSD but they don't sell them in Europe, so decided to go for a mechanical Salsa Blackborow to be turned into an ebike later.
 

Over50

Well-Known Member
#6
I wanted to get a GSD but they don't sell them in Europe, so decided to go for a mechanical Salsa Blackborow to be turned into an ebike later.
The GSD hasn't been released yet (probably around March in the USA). I assume that once released it will be available in Europe. I believe the Vektron is sold in Europe so I would think the GSD would be as well. Some of the Youtube press after it was announced was from the UK.
 

Over50

Well-Known Member
#7
A quarter late but worth the wait: the GSDs are arriving! Got a look at mine today fresh out of the box (matte/steel blue). Will pick it up next weekend. A real functional beauty. We stood it on its 4 feet and I lifted it with one hand from the seat tube. Of course its a heavy bike but it is so well balanced I could easily lift it one handed and the bike didn't tip towards the front or the back (1 battery was attached). Standing it up for storage is a snap because of the balance. I'll be posting some pics next week. The Tern-branded accessories might take longer to arrive as they seem to be trailing the bikes - I'm adding the cargo panniers and the front rack. I'm also ordering an Abus cafe lock, an Abus Bordo (both keyed same as battery). I imagine it might take another month or so to get it configured to my preference.
 

Over50

Well-Known Member
#8
22 miles on the naked GSD today. Naked because none of the accessories are available yet and the standard Ortieb hooks and spacers are not wide enough to fit the burly rack. Somewhere I have some wider Ortlieb adaptor/hooks I purchased but never used and I need to dig them out of storage and see if they'll fit. At least maybe I can get use of a single pannier until the GSD bags arrive. We did a 15 mile lunch and beer trip on the Terns and then I ran some additional errands. But bummer I had to carry a backpack for groceries and was unable to test out the cargo ability of the bike.

Some observations over 22 miles: 1). bike is really stiff. had tires at 40 psi and will probably need to lower when my wife tries the bike tomorrow. The Thudbuster ST eases the bumps on the rear but I can feel the stiffness over the front wheel and in my hands. I'd say it rides rougher than the Vektron however that might just be individual configuration differences (tire pressure, seats are different, BodyFloat on the Vektron, Thudbuster on the GSD...). I need more time to experiment and to dial things in 2). Saddle has functionality with the handle but I'm not sold yet on the comfort/fit for me. Not sure if I'll be swapping it out. I bought a Selle Royale for my wife who will try things out tomorrow. 3). Performance Line motor maybe the smoothest in power delivery Bosch motor I've tried. Really smooth and offers plenty of power for my needs in Eco and Tour. 4). Bike is agile and easy to maneuver. It doesn't feel unstable in any way. 5). Standing on end is going to be really convenient for servicing. It is really easy to access the drivetrain when the bike is upright. 6). heavy bike but when batteries are removed it is easy to lift and carry due to the small wheels and bike's balance. 7). Odd and inconvenient thing on the dual battery setup (and not sure if this is a mistake Tern made in the assembly): the two batteries use different keys (bike came with 4 keys).

Some initial pics of the naked bike are included here. At this point only a mirror and the Thudbuster ST have been added GSD2.JPG GSD2.JPG GSD3.JPG GSD4.JPG GSD7.JPG GSD5.JPG .
 

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Ravi Kempaiah

Well-Known Member
#9
7). Odd and inconvenient thing on the dual battery setup (and not sure if this is a mistake Tern made in the assembly): the two batteries use different keys (bike came with 4 keys).
You can order ABUS lock cylinder and replace the existing ones. This way you have one key for both batteries AND the lock, instead of 3 keys. Check these links.

https://electricbikeaction.com/abus-develops-a-new-lock-for-bosch-bike-owners/

https://shop-usa.scooteretti.com/products/bosch-battery-lock

This bike is the mini van of E-bikes!
 

Over50

Well-Known Member
#11
You can order ABUS lock cylinder and replace the existing ones. This way you have one key for both batteries AND the lock, instead of 3 keys...
Good call. I discussed with LBS and they are going to attempt to get everything keyed alike. I'm adding 2 Abus 5650 cafe locks (bike comes with mounts for front and rear wheels) and an Abus Bordo (mounts on front carrier). Having the 5650s mounted will reduce need to cable the wheels (but will still need to cable the seatpost (or take it with me).
 

Over50

Well-Known Member
#13
Picking mine up any day now! Had hoped to get it Sunday but they found damage when they opened up the box.
Nice! Well, not nice that it was damaged in shipping but nice that you'll be seeing the replacement soon. What color? Dual battery? Are you getting any of the Tern accessories and if so has your dealer told you when they might be ready? I'm waiting to hear back from my dealer about that and until then, I'm shopping for some saddlebag style panniers (the type that are a 1 piece unit with 2 bags and a handle in the middle) such that I'll have something to use on the bike to at least carry some groceries. Or I may order the oversize Ortlieb hardware necessary to convert a couple of my Ortliebs.

Any other modifications/adds planned? I added the Thudbuster ST and it helps with the ride in the rear of the bike. Still a bit rough at the hands but I haven't lowered the tire pressure below about 38 psi.

We put about 30 miles on our GSD last weekend. My wife loves it and I think she maybe adopting this one and throwing the Vektron my way for our weekend rides and grocery runs.
 
#14
We got an orange one...Seattle is kind of gray in the winter so I wanted something that would stand out. We got the dual battery, Cargo Hold panniers, Sidekick lower deck and two Sidekick cushions, all of which are ready with delivery. We might get the Transporteur front rack when it comes out, but the size looks smaller than I would find useful. I'm hoping Cyclefab will make a larger rack, but not sure if the bike's brackets on head tube could take more.

I will be using the bike to haul my two kids around. We're making a kid-rail/rear handlebar setup with a stoker stem shimmed down to the 30.9 upper seatpost and old chro-moly apehanger handlebars which should allow the older kid to sit in the back and hold onto the grips, somewhat enclosing the younger one. No plans for a suspension seatpost just yet. Am hoping that it being a Class 1 and the 2.4" tires will be enough. I have a class 3 Stromer St1 which has a Bodyfloat on it, so I'm familiar with the benefits of suspension. That will likely continue to be my daily ride and my partner will use the Tern GSD for occasional commutes and to haul her climbing gear to the gym. We also want to do some bike-camping within 30-40 miles, so the GSD will be good for hauling the kids and gear out to campsites.

I've also got another e-bike project in the works. We have a Dahon Qix D8 and I've pre-ordered the 50 mile Dahon kit from Swytch for it, which is expected to deliver later this year. I'm 6'2" and my partner is 5'3". My older child will likely be taller than my partner soon. The folder will be an e-bike for the family and guests to share, then likely be passed off to the older child in a couple of years. We ordered two Swytch Dahon kits and may build up a second one if the first one works well. Top speed on that is only 15.5 mph, so it will be a good first e-bike for my son and sufficient for multi-modal travel.

Tai
 

Over50

Well-Known Member
#15
You can order ABUS lock cylinder and replace the existing ones. This way you have one key for both batteries AND the lock, instead of 3 keys...
It was an excellent suggestion but I guess I have to get used to the idea of multiple keys as my dealer doesn't appear to have much Abus expertise. So I'll probably be outfitting the bike with the new Abus Bordo alarm lock and the 2 5650 cafe locks that I probably have to order from Germany (don't appear to be sold in the US). Also the 5650s do not appear to be able to be single-keyed.

I'm hearing the Tern accessories will be trickling in shortly. I think the cargo panniers have been shipped.
 
#16
Over50 - Do you have the ABUS card with the key numbers? My dealer is able to get the lock set and is going to key my wife's bike the same as mine... if so, let me know and I'll talk to Ivan and see if he can order them up for you and I'll ship them to you from Germany. I work on base, so it will be USPS from my APO...

Oh yeah - that's a sweet bike too!

-Terry
 

Over50

Well-Known Member
#17
Over50 - Do you have the ABUS card with the key numbers? My dealer is able to get the lock set and is going to key my wife's bike the same as mine... if so, let me know and I'll talk to Ivan and see if he can order them up for you and I'll ship them to you from Germany. I work on base, so it will be USPS from my APO...

Oh yeah - that's a sweet bike too!

-Terry
Thanks Terry. My bike wasn't delivered with a key card oddly enough. I think I have an Abus USA contact now that was sent to me by another forum member so I will probably try that first but thanks for the offer. Maybe the simplest thing to do is just replace both battery locking cores at once and order the Abus Bordo 6500 keyed alike. It looks like it is only the top-of-the-line, highest security locks from Abus that can be keyed to order. So the alarm lock not, the 5650 cafe locks not. Abus has a cafe lock that can be keyed to order but I don't think it fits the GSD due to the wide tires.

Minimum I'm probably looking at 2-3 keys (1 for batteries and Bordo and 1 each for cafe locks). Maximum 6 keys (seems ridiculous for 1 bike) if everything is using a different key.
 

Over50

Well-Known Member
#18
...My bike wasn't delivered with a key card oddly enough...
I have to correct a couple of things I have posted in this thread: 1). I've been informed that Tern's Bosch battery mounts do not use Abus lock cores which explains why I didn't get an Abus key card at time of delivery (I thought all Bosch harnesses use Abus but guess I was wrong about that). 2). I did get an Ortlieb bag to fit the pannier rail on the GSD rear rack. I posted earlier that the standard Ortlieb hardware does not fit. When I remove all the spacers, it requires a good solid push and a manual triggering of the hook latch but it fits. It is a tight fit that doesn't move at all.
 

Over50

Well-Known Member
#19
The lower support rails and the GSD panniers showed up at my LBS this week. We are still waiting on the front rack. Today was our initial grocery run on the bike. The picture is next to a Panera where we stopped from lunch. We went from there to Target and then Trader Joes. The panniers on their own will hold about 3-4 bags worth of groceries. We use cold storage grocery bags so it is convenient to take those into the store load them up and then we can just drop them into the GSD panniers. My wife was riding the GSD today (about 23 miles covered) and I was on my human powered Spot: GSD_Panniers.jpg

I also recently purchased some saddlebag style panniers from Alban in the UK. They will be useful for our short weekend tours or for commuting to work. The GSD rack would probably fit two sets of them however my Ortliebs as I posted earlier also fit. I could probably carry two Ortliebs and these Albans on the long GSD rear rack:
Alban1.jpg Alban3.jpg
 

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Over50

Well-Known Member
#20
Made my first commute on the GSD today. 36 miles averaging about 14.7 mph. Contrast with a commute last week on the class 3 R&M Charger GX (similar weather) in which I averaged just over 16 mph. The trip to work, which is the "shorter half" of 16 miles, I did in about 67 minutes which is about 9-10 minutes slower than a normal commute on my class 3. Certainly reasonable IMO to add 15-30 minutes to the total commute in order to ride, now and again, the diminutive yet fun Terns (commuted on the Vektron a couple of times with similar results).

I used 2 batteries (Powerpack 400s) charged to about 85% each (guestimate). Starting range said 115 miles in Eco. Trip in was probably 50/50 Eco to Tour and trip home was probably 25/75 Eco to Tour. I can cruise around 17-18 mph in Eco without too much cardio stress and 18-19.5 in Tour. Additional torque in Tour helps with the start/stop. Ending range estimate in Eco was about 60 miles.

For luggage I used the Tern cargo panniers. I had a backpack in one and locks plus clothes in the other. These are big, blocky bags that must certainly hurt aerodynamics (but they sure hold a lot of sh**). Returning I only used one pannier so the other was tucked away. They lay really flat against the cargo rack when they are not in use. I left all my bags on the bike and covered the bike at the bike rack with my Covrir latching cover (and of course used my robust Abus u-lock with cables on the wheels and seat). End of day came and nothing was missing.

Last weekend, I almost had the bike tip over. I thought with the robust center mount kickstand that the bike would stay upright even with uneven loads. I also wasn't on a completely flat surface (sidewalk outside) so maybe that contributed. I had 1 bag of groceries on each side and a tub of cat litter on one side offset by a couple of 12 packs of sparkling water and a 6 pack of beer on the other. If I had to guess, maybe 40-50 pounds total. I pulled out the beer and a bag of groceries at the same time on one side and the bike started to slowly fall over. I was fortunate to drop the groceries whilst saving the beer and the bike (priorities you know).

My Abus cafe locks arrived. This week, the LBS will attempt to switch the battery locking cores to Abus and install the cafe locks. As well my Bordo folding alarm lock arrived but that won't be mounted to the bike until I have a front rack. I plan to test it out in the interim but as of tonight the Bordo Alarm is still in the box. The Bordo alarm, the cafe locks and the battery locking cores are all keyed-alike to the same key as my R&M. So going from 3 separate keys between 2 bikes (with 1 lock) to 1 key for 2 bikes and 4 locks (2 Bordos to share and 2 cafe locks mounted on the GSD) will be a big win. Will report back on that and post pics hopefully next weekend.