Requesting assistance...which bike?

jodi2

Active Member
Your post reads like an ad, sorry.
I don't know these Roll bikes yet, but I did not see why this bike should be perfect for Colleen, what it can do better a Stromer or a SL bike?
 

jodi2

Active Member
Can you cruise around on your SL at 25mph? That was the poster's request. I stand by my remarks that SL is not the model for a person to maintain that average speed.
This is absolutely possible!
If the need for speed is Colleen's biggest point she shouldn't go away from a Stromer. But I had the impression, that her wish for something lighter more agile is more important at the moment. If so, a SL bike is one of the best choices at the moment, she should try one. If it's not enough power/speed for her, she should stay with Stromer. As explained she won't be happy with a normal Como/Vado I think.
If the ST3 makes to much trouble, maybe an older model like ST1X or ST2 is more reliable?

If you and your wife haven’t done so, I strongly recommend adding a suspension seat post to her Vado. I have Cirrus Kinect on both ebikes.
The problem is that her short legs forbid normal 350mm seat post, maximum possible length is 300mm, better less. I bought a cheap one with springs which has 300mm, but it's dissapointing. It glides very badly/roughly, starts very late and you can already turn it a few degrees/more than in the beginning.
Someone told me, that you can shorten for example a Thudbuster as the lower part only a simple tube, I guess others seat posts with the suspension the upper part as well. But it still hesitate to buy and shorten a $200-300 seat post, maybe to find out that it's not what we are looking for. With the $35 spring seat post I don't care...
 

PedalUma

Well-Known Member
Region
USA
Your post reads like an ad, sorry.
I don't know these Roll bikes yet, but I did not see why this bike should be perfect for Colleen, what it can do better a Stromer or a SL bike?
I focused on Specialized because Collene requested these bikes. Not because I sell them. The Specialized Turbo Como SL (if that is the SL you mention) is nice and the Small fits riders who are 5'1". It is a mid-drive and that is very good. But the price is high, the power low and the battery very small. It is a Class 3 and that is good. The quality is high.
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The Roll also from Specialized, as Collene inquired about, has a similar comfortable geometry to the Como. It can get a more powerful Class 3 mid-drive motor added then is available with the Como. And a longer range battery while keeping total weight to about 43.5 pounds. Cool.

The Stromer is heavy as heck. It is a hub-drive and that sucks in a major way. I have attached a photo of one that came to me because it died on a twenty-mile ride with a headwind. She will be riding by the L.A. beaches where there are typically strong winds from the West and she will be doing climbs which will also kill a hub-drive. In my opinion the Stromer is over priced and clunky. The fit and finish is okay but the welds are not that great (zoom in on a weld). They are very expensive to maintain and have many proprietary parts so you are stuck going to a dealer and paying through the nose again and again.
 

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DJRib

Member
Region
USA
City
Columbus OH
Can you cruise around on your SL at 25mph? That was the poster's request. I stand by my remarks that SL is not the model for a person to maintain that average speed.
Bio, could you elaborate? (Sorry, newbie question) If you are used to 16-18 mph over long distances on a road bike, is 25 really a stretch on a SL that doesn't weigh that much more? Appreciate any perspectives. Thanks.
 

BioWheel

Member
Region
USA
Bio, could you elaborate? (Sorry, newbie question) If you are used to 16-18 mph over long distances on a road bike, is 25 really a stretch on a SL that doesn't weigh that much more? Appreciate any perspectives. Thanks.
If you have ridden regular bikes than you know the great difference in speed that 16 and 18 are from 25mph. It's a chasm actually. I think if you want to ride at 25 on the SL you can do it. But you said cruise and that implies with ease. 25 on the SL takes effort on anything other than flat roads. And you'll have to do all this speed using the most power draining mode and you'll be disappointed with the smaller battery.

So that's my reasoning. I love the SL - absolutely. I'd recommend it to a different user.
 

Stefan Mikes

Well-Known Member
Region
Europe
City
Brwinów (PL)
Can you cruise around on your SL at 25mph? That was the poster's request. I stand by my remarks that SL is not the model for a person to maintain that average speed.
This is absolutely possible!
I cannot understand your statement Jodi. You are riding a 25 km/h Creo SL, which is a road e-bike, and you are riding it on your own leg power past the limiter. You say you can ride it at 25 mph (40 km/h). In other words, you do not need an e-bike but just a road bike, right?

I own Vado SL that I can derestrict with my thumb press, effectively making it a Class 3 e-bike. The air drag is so tremendous I can effortlessly ride my Vado SL only up to 32 km/h (20 mph), only with no impeding headwind, and only at 100% Turbo mode that drains the battery very fast. With effort, I can ride Vado SL up to 36 km/h (22 mph) but only during very short bursts. Above 36 km/h, air drag becomes excessive.

So no, I don't believe Colleen would be happy with Vado SL disregarding how lightweight the e-bike is. On the other hand, the way full power Vado is made, it is a nimble e-bike, on which you can pedal at speed for long distances, and you don't feel it is heavy.

I think the main difference is Stromers are equipped with very heavy hub Direct Drive, and Vado is a mid-motor e-bike that gives totally different riding experience. Despite its 53 lb weight, Vado 5.0 feels nimble and agile.

You own both Stromer and Creo SL, Jodi. I own both Vado and Vado SL. Vado SL is my everyday e-bike because I can carry it down- and upstairs in one hand. I don't speed on my daily solo rides. However, I take my S-Pedelec Vado out of my car's trunk on weekends and join long and fast group rides with my strong and younger friends and family. And we are zooming! I could not go for group rides on my Vado SL...
 
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jodi2

Active Member
The Roll also from Specialized, as Collene inquired about, has a similar comfortable geometry to the Como. It can get a more powerful Class 3 mid-drive motor added then is available with the Como. And a longer range battery while keeping total weight to about 43.5 pounds. Cool.
I thought the "Roll" is an ebike model maybe sold only in the US. But it's a normal bike and you suggest to convert it into an ebike? Than I understand even less. I've got high respect for people how do this and of course this is normally cheaper than a ready made ebike. This is great to discuss, but why here? I haven't seen any statement from Colleen that connects her with this way. No complaints about prices, no wish do to such a DIY conversion, no love for a Roll. And as I said before, the Stromer bikes have a different riding position more similiar to the Vado, not like Como or Roll.
The Specialized Turbo Como SL (if that is the SL you mention) is nice and the Small fits riders who are 5'1". It is a mid-drive and that is very good. But the price is high, the power low and the battery very small. It is a Class 3 and that is good. The quality is high.
"SL" is the light assist drive system (motor+battery+control) from Specialized&Mahle which is now available in several Specialized bikes of different types, Vado SL, Creo SL, Como SL, Levo SL.
To complain about less power AND less battery/range with a light assist drive is wrong, you should stay at one point. I get with my Creo SL about 2-3 times the range of my Stromer with only 40% of the battery size in the Creo. I need per mile 15-20% of the energy then with my Stromer. With 25km/h motor limit, with a US 45km/h Creo SL I guess it would be 30-40% (Stefan can compare this... ;-) ). So still more range than a Stromer with it's big and heavy battery. Of course top speed and average speed will by siginificantly less, no doubt about this. But as mentioned before, it's a different type of riding and also fun without any motor support while a Stromer without support is terrible to ride.
The Stromer is heavy as heck. It is a hub-drive and that sucks in a major way. I have attached a photo of one that came to me because it died on a twenty-mile ride with a headwind. She will be riding by the L.A. beaches where there are typically strong winds from the West and she will be doing climbs which will also kill a hub-drive. In my opinion the Stromer is over priced and clunky. The fit and finish is okay but the welds are not that great (zoom in on a weld). They are very expensive to maintain and have many proprietary parts so you are stuck going to a dealer and paying through the nose again and again.
I see many prejudices against Stromer bikes.
Stromer bike ARE heavy, clunky and pricy. But they offer one of the best riding performances of all ebikes according to speed and stability. If this is your primary wish or need, they are almost without alternative. They are also very reliable, much more than many mid motors. I don't know much about Vado/Como and Brose motors, but about Bosch. My Stromer has had much less problems and costs in it's 4 years and 15.000 miles than my Bosch before in the same period. There are several riders in Europe which have already done 30.000-40.000 miles with their Stromer still with the first motor. I doubt that any single mid motor of any ebike has ever reached such milage.
There was a private database until two years ago where many german ebike riders posted since 2012 all problems with their drives/motors. There where about 100-150 of Bosch and already 60 Stromer riders. There was one(!) changed Stromer motor among all these in 600,000 miles of all 60 Stromer together. Seems like you found the photo of this changed motor... ;-)
There were about 40 changed Bosch motors among all these Bosch riders. On average Bosch motors were (are?) changed every 6000-8000 miles.
This comparison is not really fair, as a Stromer motor is very expensive (also for the Stromer factory) and a Bosch motor is quite cheap. So Stromer tries to avoid motor changes while Bosch is very generous in changing the motors for free if a problem or noise appears. But it shows that Stromer motors are far from "unreliable"...
But of course you need an experienced Stromer dealer and with good connections to Stromer in Switzerland. Also the "dealer net" is much smaller/less dense the for example for Bosch. You can't repair much on motor/battery on your own (neither with other drives...) and I also know riders and also dealers who struggled with Stromer Switzerland.

Colleens experiences with the old ST1 and a new ST3 are not typical. The ST5 had some problems in it's first year, ST3 was a little bit more stable. Today/2021 both are normally very reliable.
The ST1 on the other hand was one of the first Stromer with quite old technology and quite some problems and also not that strong and lasting uphill and sometimes with overheating problems like you mentioned. These problems are history since 2014 when the ST2 came out. You can't damage anything uphill in the drive no matter which mountain and you need a very hard and long uphill with Stromer after 2014 to make the system reduce significantly power to prevent overheating. It's correct that hub motors in general are less good for uphills and soon reduce power up to zero power for example with small&light 2kg assist drive hub motors (like X.35). But the big hub motors like in Stromer bikes have enough power to "overrun" any uphill. I did several mountains with my Stromer (so did many others) but I was unable to damage ever anything or to reduce power to zero. On the hardest uphills motor power/support was on near top similar then with my Bosch ebike (but overall support and speed that mountain and on the whole trip much bigger).
 

jodi2

Active Member
I cannot understand your statement Jodi. You are riding a 25 km/h Creo SL, which is a road e-bike, and you are riding it on your own leg power past the limiter. You say you can ride it at 25 mph (40 km/h). In other words, you do not need an e-bike but just a road bike, right?
Maybe this is a misunderstanding Stefan, if you read my post here again. I did NOT say, that you can ride a SL bike (especially not one with motor limited to 25km/h) easily at 40km/h. Instead I agreed to BioWheel, that it's much much easier with a Stromer and that you will never reach the power or speed of a Stromer with a SL drive. I tried to describe where a SL bike (even one with 25km/h motor limit) is still great or better compared to a Stromer and where not. There is no general good or bad bike betqween these two for everyone.

And Colleen didn't say "I'm looking for a Stromer/the full power of a Stromer with half af the weight...". Then the answer would have been easy: "Forget it.". However, she should try Vado and Vado SL and then decide herself. This decision can't be made by others, she has to try what is more to her liking and needs.
 

Stefan Mikes

Well-Known Member
Region
Europe
City
Brwinów (PL)
OK, Jodi, all clear now!

However, she should try Vado and Vado SL and then decide herself. This decision can't be made by others, she has to try what is more to her liking and needs.
The best advice.
 

kahn

Well-Known Member
Region
USA
City
northWET washington
This is a very interesting discussion with all kinds of viewpoints. What is obvious is that there still will have to be tradeoffs until the next generation or rather generations of e-bikes come along that can go fast and far with one charge with a reasonably sized battery. I opted for the Creo because I wanted a light bike and a road bike. It replaced or rather joined my custom titanium road bike with a front hub conversion. That bike is slightly more powerful but handles quite differently with that front wheel motor. I ride with a friend who has another custom bike built as an e-bike and that bike easily beats me up hills no matter which bike I ride. But that bike weighs twenty more pounds than either of my bikes.

A few weeks ago, I took my Creo on a driving trip and I had no problems tossing it on a rack. My friend can barely lift that faster bike off the ground.

But I agree, Colleen must try to test and compare the various bikes. When testing the Creo, I took it up some steeper hills and could tell it was not as powerful as my other e-bike. I liked the way it handled. But I went back two weeks later and tested it again after riding my other e-bike. Yes, it was definitely less powerful and required more leg power on my part. I still decided to purchase it.

Test and Compare.

And good luck with the decision. And as one final comment, my "financial advisor" said I could buy a newer, faster, whatever improved model next year but only if I sold this one.
 

PedalUma

Well-Known Member
Region
USA
This is a very interesting discussion with all kinds of viewpoints. What is obvious is that there still will have to be tradeoffs until the next generation or rather generations of e-bikes come along that can go fast and far with one charge with a reasonably sized battery. I opted for the Creo because I wanted a light bike and a road bike. It replaced or rather joined my custom titanium road bike with a front hub conversion. That bike is slightly more powerful but handles quite differently with that front wheel motor. I ride with a friend who has another custom bike built as an e-bike and that bike easily beats me up hills no matter which bike I ride. But that bike weighs twenty more pounds than either of my bikes.

A few weeks ago, I took my Creo on a driving trip and I had no problems tossing it on a rack. My friend can barely lift that faster bike off the ground.

But I agree, Colleen must try to test and compare the various bikes. When testing the Creo, I took it up some steeper hills and could tell it was not as powerful as my other e-bike. I liked the way it handled. But I went back two weeks later and tested it again after riding my other e-bike. Yes, it was definitely less powerful and required more leg power on my part. I still decided to purchase it.

Test and Compare.

And good luck with the decision. And as one final comment, my "financial advisor" said I could buy a newer, faster, whatever improved model next year but only if I sold this one.
I fully buy into having a lightweight eBike that is not overpowered and has excellent riding qualities, feel, with a longer range and more power than an off-the-rack SL. Here is one such bike that we weighed this week at 17Kg, 37.5 pounds with the battery attached. The Mercian frame was made in 1974. A replacement motor, it fits inside the housing, is $70 for example, and would arrive in about four days and would not require a dealer to replace. Anyone with the capacity to repair a dishwasher could do it, anywhere. Although in four-years I have yet to see a motor that needed replacement. A second charger is $17.50. The photo from the beach arrived yesterday. Those bikes ride the hills of San Francisco. Some people like spending tons of money for less if it has a logo and that is fine also. There is a certain status to that value system akin to a Viking funeral pyre or a potlatch that gives people the warm fuzees inside. I saw a $15,000 bike that had a Gold Sticker reminiscent to the sticker on the brim of a rapper's cap which justified the cost. A 2021 Specialized build came in at 35 pounds. It was an extra-small road bike with a geometry similar to the Vado's.
 

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BioWheel

Member
Region
USA
I fully buy into having a lightweight eBike that is not overpowered and has excellent riding qualities, feel, with a longer range and more power than an off-the-rack SL. Here is one such bike that we weighed this week at 17Kg, 37.5 pounds with the battery attached. The Mercian frame was made in 1974. A replacement motor, it fits inside the housing, is $70 for example, and would arrive in about four days and would not require a dealer to replace. Anyone with the capacity to repair a dishwasher could do it, anywhere. Although in four-years I have yet to see a motor that needed replacement. A second charger is $17.50. The photo from the beach arrived yesterday. Those bikes ride the hills of San Francisco. Some people like spending tons of money for less if it has a logo and that is fine also. There is a certain status to that value system akin to a Viking funeral pyre or a potlatch that gives people the warm fuzees inside. I saw a $15,000 bike that had a Gold Sticker reminiscent to the sticker on the brim of a rapper's cap which justified the cost. A 2021 Specialized build came in at 35 pounds. It was an extra-small road bike with a geometry similar to the Vado's.

Point taken. Beautiful bikes and nice job!! I still believe my Vado SL is worth every penny and then some. I've only had it a short time so I'm not certain about reliability. And, given all the parts shortages I worry about turn-around time if I have a problem. But - again - this is a super fun BEAST. And every time I ride it my mind is far away from the money it cost me. :)