Experience Thread: A noobie getting into a specialized vado 5.0 IGH

Stefan Mikes

Well-Known Member
Region
Europe
City
Mazovia, Poland
Hi Derrek,

I have just read your upgrade needs and thought about the suspension stem. As I can fully understand your need of a better suspension seat-post as I am not sure of the suspension stem. Is your suspension air fork set up properly? Do you ride at somewhat reduced tyre pressure for more comfort? Do you really need more softening for your rides at the front? There is a couple of thoughts:
  • It would be advisable to see the bike fitter just after you have installed a new suspension seat-post. It is because the fitter might suggest a different stem length/angle for you.
  • Replacing Specialized stems on full-power e-bikes has always been tricky. One thing is the integrated display mount (I think it is Garmin compatible). You would probably have to buy a new Garmin handlebar mount and install the Mastermind on a 31.8 mm side of the new stem.
  • Your existing stem (Specialized Flowset) is of course a specialized one. It has 20 degrees rise. If you wanted to replace it with, say, a Redshift Shock Stop stem, the latter is either +/-6 degrees (of different length available) or +30 degrees. It will change the geometry of your Vado and might be not what the bike-fitter would tell you.
My Vado SL has neither a suspension fork nor a display. I changed the stem to Redshift Shock Stop, which was longer than the stock one, and I slammed it -6 deg (that made me ride in a low forward position that I actually love, and my body is happy with that). Yet, the process of relocating things around the stem was step-wise, and ended 15 months past the e-bike purchase! (Stem itself, Redshift Computer Mount for Wahoo, and a recently added Redshift Utility mount + GoPro mount so I could relocate the headlight; all these things were handled by the stock Specialized mount!)

My Vado 5.0 has a rigid suspension but it has the TCD display. I have never dared to replace the stem there! Instead, I bought a Baramind BAM Trek suspension handlebars. I am not sure how much of suspension these bars give but combined with 29x2" Specialized tyres run at intermediate inflation, my rides are decently soft! (Not that I want you to buy the Baramind bars, no!)

The bike-fitter will almost certainly require that you ride clipped in.

The proper winter clothing is a big story. Same with studded tyres. I invested a lot of money and gradually learned what to wear for what weather, and the studded tyres (which I install only for frost & snow) let me ride pretty safely except of a single unfortunate crash at zero speed...
 

dynamic

Well-Known Member
Region
USA
Is your suspension air fork set up properly?
Yep!

Do you ride at somewhat reduced tyre pressure for more comfort?
Only accidentally and this is why I want the suspension stem: vibration. When tires are low (probably lower than they should be), the vibration is much less which effects hand numbness.

I actually looked at the bars you use. I think they may be a great solution.

The point of doing some of this before the pro fit is the fitters leave me with the bike setup properly, *not* instructions I can mess up.

I am going to call them and see if they sell stuff like that. They may, of course, say vibration won’t matter when fit properly.
 

Stefan Mikes

Well-Known Member
Region
Europe
City
Mazovia, Poland
I actually looked at the bars you use. I think they may be a great solution.
I have never been sure how good these bars were :) Yet, I will not be experimenting by replacing them with regular handlebars just to discover the difference haha! :D
 

dynamic

Well-Known Member
Region
USA
Planning on a computer is free but without any advanced features.
You have to have a Premium to plan your routes on a smartphone.
Pretty sure basic includes mobile route planning now. (basic being the cheapest paid plan, premium being the more expensive one. Assuming U.S. tier plans. Maybe it's different elsewhere)

Advanced multi-leg routes is a premium and web only thing.
 

Stefan Mikes

Well-Known Member
Region
Europe
City
Mazovia, Poland
Pretty sure basic includes mobile route planning now. (basic being the cheapest paid plan, premium being the more expensive one. Assuming U.S. tier plans. Maybe it's different elsewhere)

Advanced multi-leg routes is a premium and web only thing.
OK. I meant you needed to pay something to be able to plan your routes on the smartphone.
 

dynamic

Well-Known Member
Region
USA
Today I did my standard loop for coffee. I typically don't run navigation as I have done this enough that I automatically know where to turn. *However*, I did that route today because of failed planning. I was going to go do a new route on the other side of town, but because I didn't plan it the night before *and* it's an over an hour route I had to fallback on the standard route for time reasons. It was cooler in the morning, to the point where I almost stopped to put on my gloves (they are in my pannier at all times). I decided to go without them, but I definitely don't want to be gloveless in much colder than 45 degree mornings. The hoodie was good for this weather. The cool air blows through it so I wasn't ridiculously warm like I am with the rain coat.

I have been researching garmin cycling computers. None of these computers really solve all the *usability* problems. But, the reason I want the data is for trend analysis. It looks like garmin is the king of this particular aspect. And I may not need to do much other than look at all the crazy garmin fitness graphs. Finally, it looks like I don't need strava or rwgps *AT ALL* to make data work. Garmin pushes workouts/data to apple health, and looks like it supports far more data than most. I *can* still sync routes with RWGPS, but just like everyone else, it's network dependent. Meaning on ride only works when I have cell signal *and* use the smartphone. Routing, however, may be good enough on unit that pulling out the phone will be unnecessary. This, of course, still requires the separate heart rate monitor. However, I believe that heart rate monitor *could* be a garmin watch. One cool feature it has is all the climbing stuff. I try and figure this out with RWGPS, so I think I would appreciate it. *BUT* it only works on planned routes (karoo 2 version just uses the road ahead, which is smart).

Anyway, good ride. Going to try and find a time when I can do something for more than an hour to try these routes.
 

dynamic

Well-Known Member
Region
USA
Had some new stuff happen today! Ride with gps has been doing this weird thing where the route planner on mobile doesn't keep the route I planned on it correctly (it puts like random routes over mine. It's really weird). And, so I had to quickly re-plan my route this morning. And I did.

Today was different in that it was raining moderately to the point where I don't love riding. But, I really wanted to try this route. As it turns out, the "route" turned out to not even be a road. It looked like a one way path for ATV's. I got up the main dirt road, and ignored RWGPS initially to follow what looked like the "road" figuring the map was off. But, nope, the "road" I was on was a driveway. I went back and looked at the path, and decided to do it.

It's raining and there is a fair amount of mud and puddles. Feeling the back of your bike start to slip out a bit as you move around is pretty terrifying. I am pretty sure I felt the suspension seat post bottom out as I navigated avoiding mud and puddles around rocks and dips. I stopped only once while I was figuring out if I want to press on or turn around. I am really glad I did it. I wish I had stopped to take a picture of my bike at the time. I was surprisingly relatively clean, but my bike was caked in mud. Once I reached another main dirt road, I hit some puddles and rain that cleaned a lot of it off.

The flap on the arkel bag that covers the cam-lock is definitely valuable. The camlock system was also covered in mud as well as the handle to put it in and out. But the flap was clean on the outside so it covers most of the mud. It also kept everything clean and dry. And the actual handle on the top (for carrying the bag) was also clean.

The only surprising thing is I was down to 58% battery by the time I got home. The whole thing was only 12.4 miles. I have to assume that going slow and using higher assist is pretty rough on the battery. I was absolutely ignoring the pedal assist to focus on picking a path for my tires and riding. I am really glad I have a bike that lets me simply focus on riding. I really don't even know what assist I was in. Once I started that path, I ignored any controls on the bike. I think I had a similar battery experience on the single track park ride. But, I can't remember for sure.

I also decided on the garmin edge 1040 solar. I am canceling my apple watch ultra upgrade (probably just delaying) to get a bike computer instead. The watch upgrade was partly because battery life on a 3 year apple watch when using fitness stuff, doesn't always get through the day. The ultra double the battery life, so that will likely never be an issue again. However a bike computer negates using the watch. So battery will likely be fine for a while longer.

Fun day! Off I go!
 

Stefan Mikes

Well-Known Member
Region
Europe
City
Mazovia, Poland
Just back from a 58 km Vado SL ride. A big part of my return ride was in heavy raining and after dark! Yet I was prepared, with a full rainproof suit (that also covers the shoes) & gloves, my winter helmet and goggles. It was fun! I only needed to pay attention because there were several unlit bikes and quite a number of pedestrians, all wearing dark clothes (or it seemed so!)
 

dynamic

Well-Known Member
Region
USA
Just back from a 58 km Vado SL ride. A big part of my return ride was in heavy raining and after dark! Yet I was prepared, with a full rainproof suit (that also covers the shoes) & gloves, my winter helmet and goggles. It was fun! I only needed to pay attention because there were several unlit bikes and quite a number of pedestrians, all wearing dark clothes (or it seemed so!)
I actually was wearing my winter gloves I bought from specialized. They are fantastic. The only part of me that really got wet were my shoes. And that was more due to hitting puddles with my bike. And, of course, this rain coat is always too warm, so I was a little sweaty. But it's not nearly as bad in the cool rain.

I may grab some goretex rain covers for the shoes. And some cycling rain pants. I didn't like the ones I tried at REI. And, I will likely have a bigger problem with cold soon. So it may make more sense to go for full winter shoes and pants. I have several full winter coats that should be fine for cycling in the winter. One of them is a snow boarding coat. It's always been incredible for outside activity in the cold.

I genuinely enjoyed the biking in the rain. If I could do it and remain just a bit dryer, I am not sure rain would matter to me from a riding perspective. Also going to look at some cycling glasses to keep dust and rain out of my eyes.

Cycling might end up being the best thing I have done for myself! ;)
 

Stefan Mikes

Well-Known Member
Region
Europe
City
Mazovia, Poland
The only part of me that really got wet were my shoes.
What I will say has no leverage onto the United States...

There is the European equivalent of REI, Decathlon. The rainproof Decathlon trousers are great as these also cover your shoes! The next is a fluorescent yellow raincoat and German CHIBA waterproof gloves (they are equipped with a membrane inside). I was also wearing a snowboarding helmet from UVEX and "100%" goggles good for the prescription glasses.

Now, I wore a merino wool long sleeve shirt, and Decathlon bibs. I was also wearing a pair of thermoactive underwear on my legs from the Polish company Brubeck. Finally, the shoes were Adidas FiveTen FreeRider Pro.

The beauty of that combination of clothes was my body could breathe, with perspiration transferred outside, so I felt totally comfortable. The temperature at the last part of my ride was only 4 C (39 F)!
 

Rollegourmet

New Member
Region
USA
What I will say has no leverage onto the United States...

There is the European equivalent of REI, Decathlon. The rainproof Decathlon trousers are great as these also cover your shoes! The next is a fluorescent yellow raincoat and German CHIBA waterproof gloves (they are equipped with a membrane inside). I was also wearing a snowboarding helmet from UVEX and "100%" goggles good for the prescription glasses.

Now, I wore a merino wool long sleeve shirt, and Decathlon bibs. I was also wearing a pair of thermoactive underwear on my legs from the Polish company Brubeck. Finally, the shoes were Adidas FiveTen FreeRider Pro.

The beauty of that combination of clothes was my body could breathe, with perspiration transferred outside, so I felt totally comfortable. The temperature at the last part of my ride was only 4 C (39 F)!
Hello Stephan,

Finally, the shoes were Adidas FiveTen FreeRider Pro.

I m looking for to get new shoes.
What make you choose those shoes? What do you like about them?

Thank you
 

Stefan Mikes

Well-Known Member
Region
Europe
City
Mazovia, Poland
I m looking for to get new shoes.
What make you choose those shoes? What do you like about them?
These shoes are acclaimed the best for platform pedals with traction pins.
The sole is very stiff (which is good for the power transfer from legs) but it is also sticky. When you rest your foot on the pedal, you actually have to lift the foot to disengage the shoe from the pedal. The toes are protected; once I incidentally dropped a heavy hammer on my foot protected by the 510; my legs are bad and sensitive: I felt no impact whatsoever! Next feature: I was wearing these shoes at both high temperatures (97 F) and in low ones (39 F). No discomfort at any of these temps!

Basically, the sole stops to be sticky below 40 F: I start wearing boots below that temperature.

P.S. The company FiveTen had a great history; eventually they were acquired by Adidas.
 
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dynamic

Well-Known Member
Region
USA
Basically, the sole stops to be sticky below 40 F: I start wearing boots below that temperature.
This is interesting. I am thrilled that I like clipless so much. Because this could be a problem for me. Even early morning rides in spring and fall can blow past this temperature. (One reason I don't do crazy early rides yet).

But, honestly, it's the full anchoring that I love about clipless pedals. Once I clip-in, I know my feet are right. They never hit anything and function exactly the same every time. With shoes, I kept toe striking or heal striking stuff. (The bike in the case of the heal, the ground in the case of the toe). Or my pannier if my foot was back far enough.

Clipless is a "no thinking" solution. I like that. One less thing I am processing as I ride. And, I am continually shocked how well they hold and how easy they are to get out of. By this time next year I will likely have every season of clipless shoes. ;P so there is never a time when I can't just "grab a pair" and go.

To each their own!

edge 1040 solar is ordered bundled with garmin's insane HRM. Hope it works out!

I also talked to my pro bike fitter today. It looks like the stem won't be too much of a problem. The thing that you do have to be careful about is there isn't a lot of leeway for all the other cables. I think the MCP mount can just be moved (as long as the handlebars are kept *or* the new handlbars are the same diameter for the mount thing). It's possible this lock is the same as garmin's though. Which means, the MCP can be move at least to the length the cables allow.

They told me to hold off on the suspension stem but put the kinekt on the bike. Still not sure how I will get the bike there.
 

Siesta_tx

New Member
Region
USA
Me thinks he has large as H--- credit card monthly and price is no object . He's not like us old farts who buy but browse around first before jumping the gun . I taught guitar music in my youth . I had one student that had a new guitar every couple of months . No el Cheapo's either ;) He never did learn to play very well . But it was interesting to see what he'd be coming in with next . Lot's of people are like him. They buy whatever they lust for that week. I've learned as I age that often what I thought I wanted . Wasn't what I ended up with after taking time to experience what I'd already purchased in the same realm first .
On the bright side Dynamic is great to buy used not used stuff from ;) Some ride bikes others buy them with good intentions .
The IGH is more expensive so it must be a better bike. Really quite the oddity wanting clipped pedals for an IGH. I guess it’s the option that allows you to spend the most money? 🤷‍♂️
 

Stefan Mikes

Well-Known Member
Region
Europe
City
Mazovia, Poland
This is interesting. I am thrilled that I like clipless so much. Because this could be a problem for me. Even early morning rides in spring and fall can blow past this temperature. (One reason I don't do crazy early rides yet).
I wouldn't wear regular cycling shoes under 40 F. Not with my bad legs. Yes, I know the "arctic" grade clipless shoes exist (I own a pair of NW ones that I used for three times: the first time, the last time, never anymore!) :D It is mountain hiking boots, heated soles and heated socks for me when it gets really cold!
But, honestly, it's the full anchoring that I love about clipless pedals. Once I clip-in, I know my feet are right. They never hit anything and function exactly the same every time. With shoes, I kept toe striking or heal striking stuff. (The bike in the case of the heal, the ground in the case of the toe). Or my pannier if my foot was back far enough.
Your pannier was not far enough from your heel. My feet are large. I have never experienced heel strikes with any Ortlieb pannier but had to relocate the Specialized Tailwind far rearwards to avoid heel strikes.
Clipless is a "no thinking" solution. I like that. One less thing I am processing as I ride. And, I am continually shocked how well they hold and how easy they are to get out of. By this time next year I will likely have every season of clipless shoes. ;P so there is never a time when I can't just "grab a pair" and go.
For me, two drawbacks of clipless are: a. No time to detach your feet in a totally unexpected situation. b. No multiple feet positions doable.
To each their own!
Of course, the clipless/cleated is good for anybody who likes it.

edge 1040 solar is ordered bundled with garmin's insane HRM. Hope it works out!
You're going to be happy!

I also talked to my pro bike fitter today. It looks like the stem won't be too much of a problem. The thing that you do have to be careful about is there isn't a lot of leeway for all the other cables. I think the MCP mount can just be moved (as long as the handlebars are kept *or* the new handlbars are the same diameter for the mount thing). It's possible this lock is the same as garmin's though. Which means, the MCP can be move at least to the length the cables allow.
While I could do a lot of modifications to my Vado SL front part, the is nothing I can do to my big Vado. To replace the stem in that specialized full power e-bike, I would need to find some space for a Garmin compatible mount (for TCD-w display) on the bars. However, the left of the stem, the Supernova M99 Pro light takes all the space. The right stem side holds the Wahoo mount. I cannot see any modification doable there!

They told me to hold off on the suspension stem but put the kinekt on the bike.
There's one thing why it is not too good to combine two forms of suspension (the fork and a suspension stem) is they might get together in harmonic oscillation, making the things even worse. Hand numbness... Ever considered SQlab Innerbarends? These have totally cured my hand numbness!
 

dynamic

Well-Known Member
Region
USA
Your pannier was not far enough from your heel.
I would say my foot wasn’t far enough forward on the pedal. ;) which obviously never happens with clipless. Regardless, this pannier can not be mounted any further back with the equipment I have. It also wasn’t this pannier, it was the previous one. I am all clipless when going anywhere with the pannier.
Ever considered SQlab Innerbarends?
I would bet they changed the height of your hands just enough to fix the issue. I think I like ergan and gp1 would have been sufficient. I don’t love hands holding vertically on a bike. It feels really wrong. I also am becoming a much more active rider which is keeping my hands glued to “active” position. I am all over the road playing dodge the pothole, rut and washboard if traffic supports it. That’s why I haven’t tried inner bar ends yet.

Garmin compatible mount
It is definitely garmin compatible? Because that is a non-issue for me. The mount on the 2022 is just an “out to the left” instead of out front. And I would bet their are top of Tube mounts for center mounted garmin once the vado stem is gone? That would be fantastic making more space on the bars. (Frankly, I don’t need that though)