Leaning toward Kona Dew-e. Your experience

Bikeknit

New Member
Region
USA
City
Kansas City
My Surly Long Haul Trucker and I have been happily aging together. But both of us are showing some wear. I'm 68 but my Surly would rather not say. I'm thinking an e bike is in my future to keep up with friends who are getting ebikes and give me some help on hills or windy days. I have a list of features I'm looking for: light weight as I want to be able to get it on the rack myself (yes, I know you can buy racks with ramps but it all seems unwieldy to me), mid mount motor, class 1 or 2 (Do they make these?), no more expensive than $4,000 though less is nice.

I keep coming back to the Kona Dew-e though my local bike shop says they won't have any til 2022, possibly spring. I tried the Kona Splice-e and liked that it was lighter than the other bikes she had me try (A gazelle and a class 3 giant). Both the Gazelle and the Giant felt heavy to me. I liked that the Kona was more bicycle like and I could ride it comfortably in the off mode, at least on the flats. I just don't think the mountain bike features of the Splice are for me.

My questions are: If you have a Dew-e, either the regular model or the dl, what is your experience with it? Can you suggest other bikes that might work for me? I do day rides usually topping out at 20 miles, though occasionally up to 40 or 45 miles. I also do some (rather rare) light touring (no camping gear and no days longer than 45 miles). I like rails to trails sometimes. I'm a pretty slow rider a nd that is generally fine with me but the hills are getting difficult.
 

Stefan Mikes

Well-Known Member
Region
Europe
City
Brwinów (PL)
Kona Dew-e looks a nice e-bike by its specification. There are lightweight gravel e-bikes from Cannondale or Specialized but if you have an LBS you can trust, go for the Kona.
 

Dewey

Well-Known Member
The Kona Dew-e and e-Coco models are good Class 1 commuter ebikes, more than just a conversion adding a motor to a popular pedal bike, it’s a purpose built ebike frame with the wiring run internally and geometry corrected where necessary. The Shimano Steps e6100 motor is similar in power to the Bosch Active Line Plus, but without shift detection according to Court’s reviews here on EBR
 

Bikeknit

New Member
Region
USA
City
Kansas City
The Kona Dew-e and e-Coco models are good Class 1 commuter ebikes, more than just a conversion adding a motor to a popular pedal bike, it’s a purpose built ebike frame with the wiring run internally and geometry corrected where necessary. The Shimano Steps e6100 motor is similar in power to the Bosch Active Line Plus, but without shift detection according to Court’s reviews here on EBR
I've heard that a bike shop a couple of hours from here has a 2020 Dew-e, which I believe had a Bosch motor. I can hold out for the Shimano Steps motor on the 2021 if it is substantially better.
 

Dewey

Well-Known Member
I've heard that a bike shop a couple of hours from here has a 2020 Dew-e, which I believe had a Bosch motor. I can hold out for the Shimano Steps motor on the 2021 if it is substantially better.
I’d recommend a test ride, I gather the Steps e6100 (60nm) is 20% more powerful than the Bosch Active Line Plus (50nm) on last years Dew-e
 

timacn

Active Member
The Kona Dew E looks great. Did anybody ever A/B it against a Cannondale Tesoro? Would the Kona Dew E do well on rail trails, single tracks, and "tame" dirt roads? (as opposed to "crazy" dirt roads)
 

indianajo

Well-Known Member
The kona dew E has a shimano steps motor. These don't drag unpowered, and bikeknit said he likes to ride that way sometimes. Bosch motors, except the top of the line, do drag unpowered. I've ridden as much as 27 miles unpowered after the throttle quit in the rain, & I find that capability important.
Any bike with tires over 1.5" cross section & >24" diameter should be fine in mild off road trails. I dodge off the pavement sometimes when motor vehicles won't allow me 24" space. I have no suspension and 26"x2.1" tires.
 

Bikeknit

New Member
Region
USA
City
Kansas City
The kona dew E has a shimano steps motor. These don't drag unpowered, and bikeknit said he likes to ride that way sometimes. Bosch motors, except the top of the line, do drag unpowered. I've ridden as much as 27 miles unpowered after the throttle quit in the rain, & I find that capability important.
Any bike with tires over 1.5" cross section & >24" diameter should be fine in mild off road trails. I dodge off the pavement sometimes when motor vehicles won't allow me 24" space. I have no suspension and 26"x2.1" tires.
Thanks this is really useful.
 

Bikeknit

New Member
Region
USA
City
Kansas City
The Kona Dew-e and e-Coco models are good Class 1 commuter ebikes, more than just a conversion adding a motor to a popular pedal bike, it’s a purpose built ebike frame with the wiring run internally and geometry corrected where necessary. The Shimano Steps e6100 motor is similar in power to the Bosch Active Line Plus, but without shift detection according to Court’s reviews here on EBR
Thanks Dewey. Can you elaborate a little on shift detection? Why would I want it and how to compensate without it?
 

Dewey

Well-Known Member
Thanks Dewey. Can you elaborate a little on shift detection? Why would I want it and how to compensate without it?
I added a shift detection sensor to my DIY Bafang mid-drive kit on my first bike with a derailleur because that motor tends to run on a little after you stop pedalling, and I found this was pulling the chain while in the process of changing gear leading to crunching, and leaving me out of gear at a stop light. I have since swapped the motor kit over to a second bike this time with an internal geared hub in the rear, and the shift detection sensor again is helping by pausing the power, I have found my Shimano Nexus 8 IGH does not like there to be any torque on the chain while shifting or it refuses to complete the shift. There are other ways to pause the motor on a Bafang mid-drive including pulling the brake handle, back pedalling, or pause pedalling prior to shifting, or even a separate power kill switch (aka the big green button) but I found it to be one extra hassle to remember to push it before every gear shift, the gear sensor means I can just shift gear.

The Bosch and Shimano systems are more sophisticated than the simple pedal cadence sensor on my BBS01, both have a torque pedal assist sensor that identifies pedal effort. I test rode a Gazelle EasyFlow ebike for a month 3 years ago that had the earlier Shimano Steps e6000 system and the same Nexus 8 IGH as on my current bike. I experienced no problems shifting gear on the Gazelle and I suspect the Shimano system is very quick to cut power once it detects you pause/stop pedalling, Court Rye has mentioned this in a few reviews of ebikes with the Steps e6100 system on this site, his advice is to ease off a bit while shifting when you are in the higher power settings, but this is the same with Yamaha or Brose mid-drive systems which also don't have shift detection.