Homage vs Delite - help!

marektel

New Member
Hi everyone,

I’ve been lurking for a couple of weeks enjoying the conversation since we bought a Load75 from The New Wheel in San Francisco (Touring HS, dual battery, kid carrier, smartphone dock). In brief, it’s magical and we are looking for a companion to it.

That feeling of being at the bottom of a hill in SF and not being afraid is amazing!

I’ve narrowed down my search to the Homage and the Delite. While this will be a city-bike, the quality of road surfaces in SF is quite uneven, so the suspension is welcome.

I’ve ridden the outgoing Homage, the Delite, the SuperDelite, the Culture, the Nevo3. I liked the more straight up position of the Homage and Culture, but I realize the 2021 Homage has some changes to the frame. It’s likely that it will still be more upright than the Delite — but I’m not sure.

To someone who is more of an expert, could you characterize the difference between the 2021 Homage and Delite in terms of seating position?

I love the step-through of the Homage, but find that rear subframe not so aesthetic. Is it possible to remove the subframe on the Delite for an even cleaner look?

People have written good things about air-shocks but I don’t think they’re that useful for in-town riding — or?

Finally the controversial Rohloff. I test rode bikes with the Rohloff and found it incredibly seductive. The Load75 has a chain because that’s what The New Wheel had in stock and “now” is better than “in 3 months.” Some on this forum have complained about problems getting Rohloffs repaired. Slow oil leaks? Would love to hear some pros-cons!

I’m not really interested in the dual battery setup as I doubt I would ever go more than 50 miles with 90% of trips under 10.

Thanks for helping me make a choice! Happy to post photos of the bike once it gets here.

Marek in SF
 

Ravi Kempaiah

Well-Known Member
First of,

  1. New wheel is amazing shop and you will have a great experience owning and riding the bike. You have made an excellent choice there!

  2. If you like upright riding posture, then Homage would suit well and it's design also makes it easier to mount/unmount.

  3. The rear carrier system can be removed on the Delite but I think it is a structural part on the Homage.

  4. New wheel has dealt with several hundreds of bikes with Rohloff and there are thousands of riders out there with excellent experience. You have nothing to worry.
    On a forum like this, sometimes the cacophony of comments from riders who have no experience or a single bad experience completely shrouds the reports of many riders who have had good experience.
 

Jay Kay

Active Member
Hi @marektel , I don't believe there were any noticable geometry changes to either the Homage or Delite for 2021 (?), other than the dual battery Homage having a different downtube configuration to accommodate the two batteries.

My wife and I own a 2020 Delite and Homage. Both are great bikes. I can't comment on the Rohloff as we have the Vario hubs. I love the maintenance free drive trains!

For city recreation/commuting riding with some light off-road use the Homage gets the nod over the Delite in my view. The riding position is just the best. "Plush" is one word to describe it. Just try imagining again how it felt when you test road the Homage , and then realise it will feel like this every day you ride it. The upright position would cause too much wind resistance if training or possibly even bike touring were your thing.

The Delite seating position and geometry gets the nod if off-road riding is your thing, and you will likely also want the GX and Fox upgrades as well. Its handlebar reach is adjustable up to a point, so that a more aggressive bent over position (not quite like a real MTB) can be a set for off-road use, or a more comfortable upright'ish position for riding bike paths or commuting - but still not able to touch the Homage in this respect. This is a 5-10 minute job with tools required.

I get the aesthetic uniqueness of the Homage not being for everyone. On the positive side when you are riding it you won't see it. :)

The biggest con for the Homage in my view is the weight (oh, and no Fox upgrade - see below). Its approximately 5kg heavier than the Delite. The Delite stripped down of mudguards and rear rack (it would look very similar to the Delite Mountain) is approximately 8kg lighter than the Homage which is stuck with the rear rack.

Regarding the Fox upgrade, my wife and I both notice the better ride on my Delite because of the Fox 140mm suspension. We notice this on-road with changing pavement quality and finishes - we definitely notice the difference off-road. I will never get a R&M without Fox, my wife says it is less of a priority for her (she is also 30kg lighter than me!). If the Homage had a 140mm Fox option I honestly don't know whether I'd go Homage or get another Delite for my next bike. It would be a real quandary!

One other thought on the suspension. In my mind the Fox is safer without a doubt, and in real terms will save you from a pothole or pavement edge when you are distracted that the standard full-suspension wouldn't.

And finally, to be honest, they are both great bikes and you will be happy with both.
 

marektel

New Member
Thank you both for this. I think I will stop at The New Wheel again and test ride the Delite. Maybe ask them to adjust the handlebars up as high as they will go.

Ravi: Thanks for the word of confidence about the Rohloff.

Jay Kay: When you you notice the weight of the Homage? When riding? When carrying?
 

Jay Kay

Active Member
Not so much riding Marek, unless it is riding up a very steep hill - at 85kg I notice the extra weight but my wife doesnt. Otherwise the Homage feels rock solid

Where I do notice the weight is carrying it - up our flight of stairs, into the back of the car, lifting over logs etc (we do a lot of off-road riding).
 

Jay Kay

Active Member
Indeed @Stefan Mikes , the R&M suspended racks work really well and are an underrated feature not found on many bikes. Keeps 2 bottles of pinot noir from breaking on the way home from the local vinyards 😎
 

Stefan Mikes

Well-Known Member
Indeed @Stefan Mikes , the R&M suspended racks work really well and are an underrated feature not found on many bikes. Keeps 2 bottles of pinot noir from breaking on the way home from the local vinyards 😎
I tell you Jay Kay, the only feature that attracts me to R&M Homage (but not Rohloff!) is the suspended rack :) If I ever bought an R&M, that would be the Homage HS with the derailleur :)
 

marektel

New Member
@Jay Kay You recommend the Fox shock, what about this GX option on the Delite? Seems to bundle a few things including an air shock from Suntour? If one is spending 10k, what’s another 200$?
 

Jay Kay

Active Member
The GX gives you the knobbly tires, dropper post, fantastically comfortable handlebar grips, and 140mm of suspension. I havent ridden 140mm Suntour (only the 100mm Suntour on the Homage), so cant comment with much confidence. My money is the Fox still being a notch or 2 up on the Suntour in terms of comfort.

in order of priority I’d advise getting the GX upgrade, and secondly the Fox - get both if you can afford it. While the bike specs we are now talking about are geared more for off-road, without them you may not want to venture off-road, but with them I bet you find the excuse to do more off-road ridding than you thought you ever would.
 

PeterK

Member
I’m not overly keen on the looks of the Homage ”rear end”

i intend to transfer these panniers from my old bike to the Homage when it arrives.

They will serve a dual purpose - hide some of the industrial looking rear end and provide some good on bike storage.

ECC11E4A-EB54-4C87-8883-F440831E46E1.jpeg
 
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marektel

New Member
Hi everyone, wanted to thank you for your recommendations.

I stopped by The New Wheel in SF this afternoon and tried the Delite again. I love the aesthetics but the riding position is too far forward for me. I'm 6', 160lbs and have fragile wrists from too many years of programming. I tried a 2020 Homage and that worked a lot better so I ordered a:

2021 Homage HS Rohloff !!

I prefer the white so single battery. I opted for the air shipping after The New Wheel said they would go havsies on it. Delivery date is 2/1/2020.

They have some Touring Homages on order that arrive in December, so I might switch to that if I get tired of waiting.

Thanks again everyone!

Marek
 

Stefan Mikes

Well-Known Member
Can anyone tell me what's so exciting about this Rohloff compared to Enviolo?
(I also wonder whether anyone has used the Bosch ABS option, only available in Europe).
 

Alaskan

Well-Known Member
Can anyone tell me what's so exciting about this Rohloff compared to Enviolo?
(I also wonder whether anyone has used the Bosch ABS option, only available in Europe).


The advantages for a rider of the Rohloff over the Enviolo are substantial

According to bench testing of efficiency as measured by wattage loss from motor to rear wheel, a Rohloff drive train looses around 6% of the power delivered from the crank set through the chain. This is the same range as a clean, well lubricated derailleur drive train. For Nuvinci/Enviolo the power loss is 14-16%, a not insignificant difference.

The gear range on the Nuvinci/Enviolo is 380% while the range on the Rohloff is 520% The gear range on the Rohloff makes it both faster on flats and much better in very hilly territory such as they have in San Francisco which has several extraordinarily, steep hills.
 

Alaskan

Well-Known Member
@marektel Welcome to the world of Riese & Muller. I am sure you will be thrilled with your new bike when it arrives. My wife rides a 2018 Homage Rohloff and loves it. I had a 2019 which was an amazing bike but did have some design issues (weak battery cover design and issues with rear swing arm fit). Those have been corrected in the upcoming 2021 Homage so it should be a wonderful and solid performer.

If you have not already done so, please consider joining the Riese & Muller Owners Group on Facebook. We have almost 1,500 members from all over the world. Much like this forum we share our experience, maintenance tips, stories and photos.

 

BMWzenRider

New Member
Hi @marektel , I don't believe there were any noticable geometry changes to either the Homage or Delite for 2021 (?), other than the dual battery Homage having a different downtube configuration to accommodate the two batteries.

My wife and I own a 2020 Delite and Homage. Both are great bikes. I can't comment on the Rohloff as we have the Vario hubs. I love the maintenance free drive trains!

For city recreation/commuting riding with some light off-road use the Homage gets the nod over the Delite in my view. The riding position is just the best. "Plush" is one word to describe it. Just try imagining again how it felt when you test road the Homage , and then realise it will feel like this every day you ride it. The upright position would cause too much wind resistance if training or possibly even bike touring were your thing.

The Delite seating position and geometry gets the nod if off-road riding is your thing, and you will likely also want the GX and Fox upgrades as well. Its handlebar reach is adjustable up to a point, so that a more aggressive bent over position (not quite like a real MTB) can be a set for off-road use, or a more comfortable upright'ish position for riding bike paths or commuting - but still not able to touch the Homage in this respect. This is a 5-10 minute job with tools required.

I get the aesthetic uniqueness of the Homage not being for everyone. On the positive side when you are riding it you won't see it. :)

The biggest con for the Homage in my view is the weight (oh, and no Fox upgrade - see below). Its approximately 5kg heavier than the Delite. The Delite stripped down of mudguards and rear rack (it would look very similar to the Delite Mountain) is approximately 8kg lighter than the Homage which is stuck with the rear rack.

Regarding the Fox upgrade, my wife and I both notice the better ride on my Delite because of the Fox 140mm suspension. We notice this on-road with changing pavement quality and finishes - we definitely notice the difference off-road. I will never get a R&M without Fox, my wife says it is less of a priority for her (she is also 30kg lighter than me!). If the Homage had a 140mm Fox option I honestly don't know whether I'd go Homage or get another Delite for my next bike. It would be a real quandary!

One other thought on the suspension. In my mind the Fox is safer without a doubt, and in real terms will save you from a pothole or pavement edge when you are distracted that the standard full-suspension wouldn't.

And finally, to be honest, they are both great bikes and you will be happy with both.


Nice to read a review of both models from someone who owns both.

I was leaning towards a SuperDelite for the longer travel GX/Fox suspension for better ride on rougher roads/trails.
However, in the end the step-thru frame and more comfortable riding position of the Homage won out for my old and broken body.

I have done some playing around with overlaying photos of the Delite and SuperDelite on top each other as well as that of the Homage, and as best I can tell the rear suspension triangle/fork is the same on all three models.

So I am wondering if the 140mm travel rear shock and forks could be fitted to the Homage frame?
Those should be off-the-shelf parts that can be ordered separately.
That would add a better suspension to the advantages of the step-thru frame and more upright riding position.

Or even just install a longer travel fork, which would also have the net effect of creating a bit more slack head tube angle as well as more trail for more stable tracking.
In my experience with motorcycles, I know that extra front suspension travel is of greater benefit to comfort & control on rough roads and trails in most cases.
My previous dual-sport motorcycle had 9" of front travel and only 7" of rear.
On my current motorcycle I dropped the rear ride height by 2" while leaving the front end at stock height, and I really like the slightly slower and more stable steering that the geometry change has created. It suits my relaxed style of riding, and makes the bike MUCH more stable off-road.

I suppose that any fork with the right dropout spacing and offset would work...
Hmmm.....