Loose Motor on Como 2.0 UPDATE: Cracked Frame (Vados too)

I am not convinced that Specialized has solved the problem... the frame appears to use the mid-drive motor as a structural element.
If the mounting bolts come loose, the frame could experience additional stress that may cause crack propagation and potential failure.
I see no evidence of frame re-design in the 2020 models... if I owned a Specialized I would use Loctite on the bolts and check the frame regularly. YMMV
I'm not convinced that this is a widespread problem. With estimated annual sales of 685 million dollars, Specialized sells a lot of bikes, and I've only heard of a very small number of issues of this nature (granted, one of which is my bike). I will not be doing any Loctite for two reasons. First, when I pay a premium, it is partially to avoid having to monkey around. I will drop the bike off for it's recommended inspections, and pay attention to any unusual sounds, and that is it. I think opening it up and applying Loctite could very well void the warranty. Second, I am not worried this will happen again, but if it did, I have even more confidence in Specialized (and my LBS) standing behind the product, given the way they treated me. I personally do not mind getting a brand new, updated bike for my bike that had quite a few kilometres and battery cycles.
 

FlatSix911

Well-Known Member
I'm not convinced that this is a widespread problem. With estimated annual sales of 685 million dollars, Specialized sells a lot of bikes, and I've only heard of a very small number of issues of this nature (granted, one of which is my bike). I will not be doing any Loctite for two reasons. First, when I pay a premium, it is partially to avoid having to monkey around. I will drop the bike off for it's recommended inspections, and pay attention to any unusual sounds, and that is it. I think opening it up and applying Loctite could very well void the warranty. Second, I am not worried this will happen again, but if it did, I have even more confidence in Specialized (and my LBS) standing behind the product, given the way they treated me. I personally do not mind getting a brand new, updated bike for my bike that had quite a few kilometres and battery cycles.
As a pilot and tech, I doubt very much that Loctite will void the warranty.
I would recommend a pre-flight inspection of the frame before riding... ;)
 

Uburoibob

Active Member
As a pilot and tech, I doubt very much that Loctite will void the warranty.
I would recommend a pre-flight inspection of the frame before riding... ;)
A good amount of disassembly needs to be done to inspect the frame. And long before the frame breaks, the motor becomes loose (which I believe is what causes the frame to break).
 

Uburoibob

Active Member
One thing...long before I heard any noises or felt anything weird, I noticed that the front chainring/sprocket was oscillating slightly. Looking straight down at it, I could see that there was slight movement, but at the time figured it was a part of the e-bike mid-motor experience. Clearly, I know now that it was not normal.

Now when I ride, that's the first thing I look at. So, in lieu of a pre-ride frame inspection, I'd suggest an as-you-ride sprocket inspection. First 500 miles on my replacement bike and not a hint of movement...
 

PDXzap

Active Member
...the motor becomes loose (which I believe is what causes the frame to break).
So you're saying the motor is an integral part of the frame and without the motor the frame would break or the motor moving around is what broke the frame?
 
So you're saying the motor is an integral part of the frame and without the motor the frame would break or the motor moving around is what broke the frame?
The motor has three mounting bolts. If one is even slightly loose, the motor will crack the mount by torquing it back and forth, and pretty quickly. I agree with Uburoibob, if you pay attention early signs should warn prior to serious damage occurring. There should be zero creaking sounds. There should be no oscillating. But aside from keeping my eyes and ears open, I'll let my LBS worry about it.
 

Uburoibob

Active Member
Here are two photos - the open motor is taken from a Specialized video. You can see how and where the motor mounts. While the motor is not exactly integral, the frame down there gets pretty thin. I would imagine that Specialized could reinforce this area with a piece of steel brazed onto the frame or something like that. But you can see, if the motor gets loose, it will create enough force to crack the frame where I've indicated with the blue arrow. Please excuse the poor Photoshop work - the images were shot at two different angles.
 

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Here are two photos - the open motor is taken from a Specialized video. You can see how and where the motor mounts. While the motor is not exactly integral, the frame down there gets pretty thin. I would imagine that Specialized could reinforce this area with a piece of steel brazed onto the frame or something like that. But you can see, if the motor gets loose, it will create enough force to crack the frame where I've indicated with the blue arrow. Please excuse the poor Photoshop work - the images were shot at two different angles.
Very well explained. And although the idea that it may not void the warranty to go in there and apply Loctite or whatever, I'm sure not putting that to the test. Specialized did have my bike shipped back to them, and I can just imagine them turning down a claim if there was any sign of non authorized work.
 

Perpixel

New Member
Just came back from my LBS and they cannot get a matching or better replacement.

My 3 options are,

- Platinum 2.0 and they swap all the parts.
- Getting a vado
- Wait March for new models...

I will be going with option 1 but still feel I'm getting screwed in a way. Plus the serial number will be of a 2.0 so what if next time it break specialized claim it's a 2.0 or if it get stolen....

My LBS seems to be doing what they can but I will be contacting specialized directly to complain.
 

Uburoibob

Active Member
Just came back from my LBS and they cannot get a matching or better replacement.

My 3 options are,

- Platinum 2.0 and they swap all the parts.
- Getting a vado
- Wait March for new models...

I will be going with option 1 but still feel I'm getting screwed in a way. Plus the serial number will be of a 2.0 so what if next time it break specialized claim it's a 2.0 or if it get stolen....

My LBS seems to be doing what they can but I will be contacting specialized directly to complain.
So, it will be a 2019 2.0, platinum color? In exchange for your 3.0?
 

Uburoibob

Active Member
Correct.

They swap the drivetrain, wheels, brakes from my 3.0. lots of labour. Even the battery they swap the top plate.
Well, if there's any good news in this, it's that your LBS will be able to make sure the motor is Loctited in and do whatever they can do to ensure it won't come loose. As far as the serial, doesn't that follow the bike? I would think that you could get some sort of certificate that makes it clear what's happened with the bike. As far as the battery, because you'll be keeping the class-3 motor, you'll need the higher power battery from your 3.0.
 
Correct.

They swap the drivetrain, wheels, brakes from my 3.0. lots of labour. Even the battery they swap the top plate.
That does not sound great to me. I'd go for the Vado, or wait, or ask for a refund and get a different brand. I think they discussed something similar for my bike, and my LBS pushed back. But if you are okay with it, hope it all works out for you.
 

RonV

New Member
Here are two photos - the open motor is taken from a Specialized video. You can see how and where the motor mounts. While the motor is not exactly integral, the frame down there gets pretty thin. I would imagine that Specialized could reinforce this area with a piece of steel brazed onto the frame or something like that. But you can see, if the motor gets loose, it will create enough force to crack the frame where I've indicated with the blue arrow. Please excuse the poor Photoshop work - the images were shot at two different angles.
The Motor of my Vado got lose on the front. The mount on the back is cracked. I'm now waiting on my LBS for the solution.
 

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Perpixel

New Member
That does not sound great to me. I'd go for the Vado, or wait, or ask for a refund and get a different brand. I think they discussed something similar for my bike, and my LBS pushed back. But if you are okay with it, hope it all works out for you.
So I called Specialized support directly and they made things rightish I guess. I will be getting a 4.0 2020 bike in the spring and gave me a loaner 2019 2.0 while I wait for that.

Let me tell you that tektro brakes + alivio setup is Uber crap. Death machine level. The 3.0 brakes are far from great but it sure is several level better.

Anyway in the end I'm ok and my LBS is too since they they have to put tons of labour swapping things. And I'm glad I won't be stuck with the gold colored frame. Too much bling bling for me and would never buy that really.
 

Uburoibob

Active Member
The Motor of my Vado got lose on the front. The mount on the back is cracked. I'm now waiting on my LBS for the solution.
I am sorry to hear about your bike, Ron. Thanks for the photos of the cracked area - they are the first I’ve seen of the actual crack.
 

Uburoibob

Active Member
So I called Specialized support directly and they made things rightish I guess. I will be getting a 4.0 2020 bike in the spring and gave me a loaner 2019 2.0 while I wait for that.

Let me tell you that tektro brakes + alivio setup is Uber crap. Death machine level. The 3.0 brakes are far from great but it sure is several level better.

Anyway in the end I'm ok and my LBS is too since they they have to put tons of labour swapping things. And I'm glad I won't be stuck with the gold colored frame. Too much bling bling for me and would never buy that really.
The Tektro brakes on my 2020 3.0 Como are better than the brakes on the 2019 2.0 were. Glad to hear you have a solution. Hopefully, spring will come early.
 
The Tektro brakes on my 2020 3.0 Como are better than the brakes on the 2019 2.0 were. Glad to hear you have a solution. Hopefully, spring will come early.
Agree, the Tektro on my replacement 2020 3.0 seem terrific. Also, sounds like both Specialized and his LBS have done everything they could to satisfy and make things right for Perpixel. After my own experience, and from all I have read, I am convinced Specialized is just plain outstanding in the customer support dept.
 

FlatSix911

Well-Known Member
The Motor of my Vado got lose on the front. The mount on the back is cracked. I'm now waiting on my LBS for the solution.
Thanks for sharing the detailed photos. Has the frame design changed on the new 2020 models?

1572069084536.png
 

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Perpixel

New Member
Agree, the Tektro on my replacement 2020 3.0 seem terrific. Also, sounds like both Specialized and his LBS have done everything they could to satisfy and make things right for Perpixel. After my own experience, and from all I have read, I am convinced Specialized is just plain outstanding in the customer support dept.
Did my daily commute today and the bike is ok. The brake did get a bit better after bedding the pads. Also absolutely NO noise from the frame. My previous bike was definitely squeaking.