Turbo Vado 6.0 ?

Marci jo

Well-Known Member
Agreed e-levity,
I also felt the original stock Electrak tires were stiff and made the Vado 6.0 fell slightly ponderous and a bit cumbersome. Although I did not rebuild my wheels, I simply had smaller tires with a little more tread switched on the bike. Made a huge difference. My understanding is that the Vado 5.0 (the 6.0 replacement) now comes with a smaller more forgiving tire.
Still loving my Vado. It’s my go-to bike. It still has that same “wow” feeling like it is new.
 

Stefan Mikes

Well-Known Member
What model year is your Vado 6.0, Marci jo? Is your fork equipped with a shock absorber? Now I own a 2019 Vado 5.0. I was slightly surprised to get the bike with the rigid fork and Electrak tires as well as TRP Zurich brakes. My opinion on the 29x2.0 tires is different from yours. I do love the rigid fork and the tires that both give me a feeling of perfect control at high speeds, during braking; and the tires absorb shock in rough terrain very well; I would neither return to shock absorber fork nor to narrower tires again .

The 2019 Vado 5.0 with BLOKS display exhibits all known issues of the older display. The Specialized dealer promised replacing BLOKS with TCD-W under warranty or to replace the 2019 Vado 5.0 with 2020 Vado 5.0 or 6.0 by paying extra. I'd rather have the display replaced as the bike I own now is just a marvel as long as it works. It seems to me Specialized have downgraded new models for 2020.
 

Marci jo

Well-Known Member
Stefan Mikes,
Glad you like your Vado 5.0 My Vado 6.0 is a 2018 year model. I ordered it in Oct 2017 and because we were having such fabulous Fall weather, I was hoping to receive it quickly. Unfortunately it didn't arrive until mid Dec, one day before a major snow storm here in the upper Midwest. I was very bummed!!! Had to wait until Spring of 2018 to start riding it. But I love it!!
Yes, it has a front fork but I'm not so sure it helps with small bumps. Bigger ones, yes.
By far the best accessory I added was a suspension seat post. I use Kinect, but I'm sure there are many types available in Europe.
The original tires were Electrak 2.0. One of the bike shop personnel said these tires are specific for Europe's laws. He was kind of vague as to those laws. I found not only were the tires stiff, the sidewalls were so high, making the bike higher off the ground than I liked. I'm not very tall. Specialized has since change the tires to Trigger brand, at least here in the United States.
My Vado still has the Bloks display. I'm indifferent as to if I'm going to change it. And I'm not sure the fix is available for a Vado year 2018. My philosophy is if it's not broken, don't change it!! I just simply watch the battery usage. So far no problem with running out of power.
Right now, I have about 2500 miles (4023 km) over two seasons on the Vado. I also have a new 2nd ebike which I've ridden about 650 miles (1040 km). Love the Brose motor, so powerful and quiet.
Hope you have many great miles.
 

Stefan Mikes

Well-Known Member
I understand your preferences Marci jo now. No, I don't think the tires have anything to do with the law in Europe. The bikes I used to ride before Vado both had Suntour NEX suspension fork and 700c x 40 tires. There are many gravel, unpaved and badly paved roads where I live so I was really unhappy with perceived vibration. The fixed fork of Vado plus quite fat tires do miracles for me.

The Brose motor was the primary magnet that attracted me towards Specialized in general and Vado in particular. I'm equally impressed. I watched several Electric Mountain Bike Network videos on YouTube and could not understand how people could live with the Bosch motor noise; it's where I discovered Specialized e-bikes but I'm not into the MTB stuff like Levo, Kenevo. Pity not many e-bike brands use Brose motors.

I could say the rear hub motor e-bike I also own might do; yet use anything more than the lowest pedal assist and you have the feeling you're pushed; the quiet whine of the hub motor is distracting too. The excellent noiseless mid drive Brose motor is just fantastic!
 
I have ridden my Vado 6 a bit over 800 miles this summer, some city riding, but mostly out on country roads. To this point, the only problem I have encountered is reseating the battery. My dealer (and some of my friends) can do it instantly, but I seem not to have the "touch". My solution has been to simply leave the battery on the bike and charge it while it is on the bike. Aside from that small inconvenience, the bike has ridden like the proverbial top all summer. I regularly degrease and lube the chain and cassette and wipe the bike down once in a while. I ride in some pretty hilly countryside and the bike has been superb in every instance and I have not had to take it to the dealer all summer. I use a torque wrench if I remove the tires to clean the fenders or for tightening up loose connections simply to keep up the specs outlined in the manual. Sadly, Specialized has apparently dropped the ball on their Mission Control app which was to be such a large part of customizing the bikes power. That by itself is a huge disappointment in regard to the Vado 6, but I use a Garmin 1000 bike computer to keep track of mileage and all of the other parameters it is capable of, along with navigation. It would have been really great if the app could have been made to work with the Blok's controller unit. Hopefully, i haven't jinxed myself with this report on my positive experience with the Vado 6!!
I have the same battery problem. I am looking for a solution because I am forced Tom remove my battery to charge it
 

Stefan Mikes

Well-Known Member
Reviving this older thread since there is a question to @Marci jo:

Could you describe practical range of your Vado 6 at different assist modes and different weather conditions? Here's what I found during my Autumn/dry Winter rides, almost always windy and with temperatures below 13 C (55 F) but above 0 C (32 F):

Eco mode: Maximum estimated range of less than 75 km (46 miles)
Sport mode: Maximum achieved range 45 km (28 miles)
Turbo mode: Not more than 40 km (less than 25 miles)

I wonder if that's normal range. Of course, there are many more factors to be taken into account but I am interested with your figures, Marci.
-----------
Regarding the battery removal/re-insertion, I see to finally mastered the chore. Aligning the bottom battery part so the battery is almost parallel to its chamber, "a good slap", done! It is not the nightmare I had in the beginning anymore.
 

smitty

Active Member
Wow...I follow exactly with the problem you discuss in regard to refitting the battery when removed. I simply have tried not to remove it and simply charge the bike on the bike itself and it has worked fine. I think you have the ranges spot on. My buddy with his Vado 6 that we ride a lot together, he more often will be in ECO, while I use more of the Sport than he does. We compare battery usage during our trips and I may use 15 -17 more % over the same terrain, lots of hilly riding and generally 20 -25 miles on a trip. My sense of your numbers on your Vado are excellent in terms of the battery usage given the battery used on the Vado 6. I too am frustrated wit the Blok's and not being able to use the Mission control and I have experienced plenty of emails from specialized on the problem and all of us riding a Vado 6 with Blok's should have had them replace the Blok's computer! I am happy to read these reviews on the Vado 6 as I have loved mine riding it and I have a Stromer St-2 as a companion. The major difference between rear engine and mid engine are surely different but either ride is a lot of fun and the weight difference sometimes simply makes it more fun to not think about the weight of the Stromer. The battery on the Stromer of course provide add more miles, so the charging can be a lit less recharging...
 

Stefan Mikes

Well-Known Member
You see, @smitty, my cellar garage almost never reaches temperatures below the freezing point but it is cold. For that reason I learned removing and re-inserting the battery to charge it and store in the flat. Re-inserting the battery is even not hard after some practice. The point is the bottom part of the battery cover needs to be neatly aligned with the chamber.

1581338203906.png

This is the properly aligned bottom of the Vado battery on re-insertion.

1581338309476.png

This is how the top part of the Vado battery should look like before locking it in the frame. There is a very small gap, almost invisible in this picture. Now, this part needs a slight slap to lock. It doesn't even need the "ye ole good slap"! :D

Regarding the BLOKS display: Instead of hating it, I started loving it ;) After the software update by a Specialized dealer, I had a single hang-up of the display in months that required me to reset it. The European Specialized distributor "pre-ordered the conversion set to TCD-W" and I'm waiting patiently...

I need to add something. We all complain about the BLOKS. The Bosch Purion is I think not better and the Intuvia is not good either. BLOKS gives me these parameters:
  • Current time
  • Actual speed
  • Battery level in % (many displays only show bars)
  • Assistance mode
  • Distance covered
  • Ride time (I always switch the power off on longer stops)
  • kcal burnt - calculated from the pedal power of the rider
  • Cadence
  • Graphical indicator of rider's power vs motor power.
Many displays cannot even do the above.

Now, it is possible to calculate the average rider's power from the kcal reported.
  1. Divide the kilocalories reported by the display for the ride by 4. (The human body has 25% efficiency in cycling).
  2. Multiply the figure by 1.16 and you will get the energy provided by your legs to the pedals in Wh
  3. Divide the figure as under (2) by time spent riding in hours (it has to be decimal value, so 3 h 20 mins = 3.33 hours)
The result is the average rider's power in Watts.
 
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I have a 2020 Vado 4.0 with 1,000km. I live in a condo so I must remove the battery after every commute to charge it. Originally the battery would not come out at all. Dealer adjusted the shim. Then I could not get the battery in unless used a very hard slap to to the point it hurt. Even then sometimes the battery would not catch fully and would come off during the ride. Dealer then replaced the lock cylinder. Now the battery was easier to latch in but came out during the ride often. Dealer played around with the shims now it goes in reasonably easy and only comes out occasionally during the ride.
I love the bike but the battery lock design is pitiful.
A total battery latch redesign is in order.
 

Marci jo

Well-Known Member
Reviving this older thread since there is a question to @Marci jo:

Could you describe practical range of your Vado 6 at different assist modes and different weather conditions? Here's what I found during my Autumn/dry Winter rides, almost always windy and with temperatures below 13 C (55 F) but above 0 C (32 F):

Eco mode: Maximum estimated range of less than 75 km (46 miles)
Sport mode: Maximum achieved range 45 km (28 miles)
Turbo mode: Not more than 40 km (less than 25 miles)

I wonder if that's normal range. Of course, there are many more factors to be taken into account but I am interested with your figures, Marci.
-----------
Regarding the battery removal/re-insertion, I see to finally mastered the chore. Aligning the bottom battery part so the battery is almost parallel to its chamber, "a good slap", done! It is not the nightmare I had in the beginning anymore.
Stefan, not sure on those ranges. I’m not as tough as you regarding cycling in cooler weather. I rarely ride below 10 C (50 F).

I’m around 135 lbs (61 kg) and estimate these ranges above 10 C on mostly flat, no wind conditions.
Eco 140 km Rarely ride in eco, only when I need to conserve battery or with slower cyclist. (Prefer to talk with them than rush away).
Sport 96 km. Favorite mode. Cruises effortlessly 27-34 kph.
Turbo 56 km. The last few km from home, a little tired or up a big hill.

However I will say that any sort of headwind significantly affects my range. If I try to hold a familiar and comfortable speed the motor responds as expected, by putting out more power and thus drains the battery faster. That was a tough but well learned lesson.

Maybe it depends on your definition of “windy” day.

Still using the original Bloks system. I’m used to it and for me it works just fine.
 
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smitty

Active Member
You see, @smitty, my cellar garage almost never reaches temperatures below the freezing point but it is cold. For that reason I learned removing and re-inserting the battery to charge it and store in the flat. Re-inserting the battery is even not hard after some practice. The point is the bottom part of the battery cover needs to be neatly aligned with the chamber.

View attachment 45485
This is the properly aligned bottom of the Vado battery on re-insertion.

View attachment 45486
This is how the top part of the Vado battery should look like before locking it in the frame. There is a very small gap, almost invisible in this picture. Now, this part needs a slight slap to lock. It doesn't even need the "ye ole good slap"! :D

Regarding the BLOKS display: Instead of hating it, I started loving it ;) After the software update by a Specialized dealer, I had a single hang-up of the display in months that required me to reset it. The European Specialized distributor "pre-ordered the conversion set to TCD-W" and I'm waiting patiently...

I need to add something. We all complain about the BLOKS. The Bosch Purion is I think not better and the Intuvia is not good either. BLOKS gives me these parameters:
  • Current time
  • Actual speed
  • Battery level in % (many displays only show bars)
  • Assistance mode
  • Distance covered
  • Ride time (I always switch the power off on longer stops)
  • kcal burnt - calculated from the pedal power of the rider
  • Cadence
  • Graphical indicator of rider's power vs motor power.
Many displays cannot even do the above.

Now, it is possible to calculate the average rider's power from the kcal reported.
  1. Divide the kilocalories reported by the display for the ride by 4. (The human body has 25% efficiency in cycling).
  2. Multiply the figure by 1.16 and you will get the energy provided by your legs to the pedals in Wh
  3. Divide the figure as under (2) by time spent riding in hours (it has to be decimal value, so 3 h 20 mins = 3.33 hours)
The result is the average rider's power in Watts.
I think that this maybe helpful...a little more practice might go a long ways
 

Stefan Mikes

Well-Known Member
Stefan, not sure on those ranges. I’m not as tough as you regarding cycling in cooler weather. I rarely ride below 10 C (50 F).

I’m around 135 lbs (61 kg) and estimate these ranges above 10 C on mostly flat, no wind conditions.
Eco 140 km Rarely ride in eco, only when I need to conserve battery or with slower cyclist. (Prefer to talk with them than rush away).
Sport 96 km. Favorite mode. Cruises effortlessly 27-34 kph.
Turbo 56 km. The last few km from home, a little tired or up a big hill.

However I will say that any sort of headwind significantly affects my range. If I try to hold a familiar and comfortable speed the motor responds as expected, by putting out more power and thus drains the battery faster. That was a tough but well learned lesson.

Maybe it depends on your definition of “windy” day.

Still using the original Bloks system. I’m used to it and for me it works just fine.
Thank you @Marci jo!

A month ago, I was 236 lbs. With diabetes/insulin resistance diagnosed, I've changed my diet drastically (no sugars, low-carb, eat less). Taking pills and riding my e-bikes as much and long as I can. Now I'm 225! Did anybody say e-bikes aren't good for fitness? :D However, with low rolling resistance (possibly slick tyres, inflated to the max), the weight mostly matters during positive elevation change (hills); there are no hills in my area.

Air resistance. You may ride in forward position. I've modified my Vado so I'm riding in more upright position. It is a very important factor. When I'm getting upwind gusts, I literally feel the bike slowing down. I cannot ride aero until my tummy flattens :D "Significant wind" in my terminology is 4 m/s (13 ft/s) or 14 km/h (9 mph) and over. As you already know, the bike speed is also important. When intentionally restricted to 25 km/h (15.5 mph), my other bike demonstrated huge range, 45% higher than unrestricted! (Summer ideal riding conditions).

Outside temperature. Batteries lose capacity at low riding temperatures. I cannot estimate that effect properly but it exists.

Having said all of that, I can see you are getting twice the range I'm getting (except the Turbo mode). I have to wait for the Spring to judge. It still might be my battery which could be in bad condition.

Nice to talk with you, Marci!