Shimano E5000 Seems Faster After 1,500 miles


Well-Known Member
This is definitely kind of crazy.

I rode my new Marin build for a few weeks, then got a flat, and took the opportunity to start work on experimenting with the cluster to improve the chain line, which is taking me a really long time because the mechanical part of my brain only lit up a few years ago, and I have to take baby steps. (I seem to be going senile in some ways, but getting smarter in others.)

When I went back to my Motobecane with it's widdle bitty 40nm E5000, I felt like I was flying. My first reaction was, "Wow, the E5000 is more powerful than the Tongshen." Then I thought, "maybe I just got in really good shape riding the Marin."

But now that it's been a few weeks-- which has included two weeks when I took it easy due to a very slightly torn meniscus-- that doesn't seem to make sense. I can't possibly be that much stronger than I was two months, or two years, ago.

I distinctly remember that that the E5000 seemed like it barely provided any assistance at all when I first got the bike, and it did seem to get better over the first 500 miles. Then I went to narrower tubeless tires and dropped a few pounds from the bike, and it was significantly more powerful. But now, I could swear that it's even punchier. I took some really gnarly hills today, and I didn't have to go into "HIGH" until the very steepest part near the top.

Is this possible, I mean, just mechanically? With cars, I've definitely had that experience, and it was most dramatic with most underpowered vehicle. The CRX could barely hit 95 for the first 30,000 miles, but by 50,000 miles, it could do 104, though it took forever to get up there.

There are confounding factors, of course. I have a connective tissue disorder, and I do lose energy sometimes for absolutely no reason, but I usually am aware that I'm feeling weaker or stronger. Just curious.
I suspect that the Marin has been teaching you how to pedal a mid-drive more efficiently. It also gives more when it gets more to achieve its extra sweet spot. So, you are giving more to get there. Your improved technique has transferred back to riding the E5000. The Marin likes smooth light pedaling, not pounding and rewards you for doing that. So, now you are not spiking the E5000's controller and it is delivering an even flow of assistance.
@Catalyzt: Uma must be right.

Since I started consistenly pedalling my Vado SL unassisted, soon I discovered I could reduce the assistance on the same e-bike or on the powerful Vado 6.0 down to ridiculously low levels on the assisted rides. My pedalling style has changed, and now my leg input increased while I became happy with somewhat lower speed. Before, I was not even aware I was overpowering my rides!
The pedaling style theory is reasonable, but I am actually going faster, too. My times are quicker-- not much, but maybe 20 seconds on a 20-minute ride.

I thought that maybe it was tire pressure-- maybe my inflator was reading 50 PSI (I know, very high, these tires are rated for 60, though) and actually delivering 75 or 80. But no-- i just had my first post-COVID ride yesterday, the tires have lost some air, and I was too lazy to top them off.

Bike still felt surprisingly powerful, and I'd had no exercise for 10 days-- zero, zip, nada.

I did back off somewhat-- went 90% as far, and I slowed down deliberately, maybe 85% as fast. But I was deliberately holding back because I didn't want to relapse, which can happen with COVID if you exercise too much too soon. It still felt easier.

I am just really relieved that at least so far, my lung capacity does not appear to be impacted. My breathing FELT a little weird and raspy-- just a tiny little bit-- but pulse ox looks good, and I could have gone a lot harder. I'm in a high risk group medically as well as due to age, so I feel really lucky.

People are telling me the fact that I was in good condition when I got COVID has probably helped me. They are probably right.
20 seconds on a 20-minute ride
It does not sound at first like much, but what if 20 seconds was the difference between First Place and Second Place in a race? That is significant. That is all great news in the right direction. I am glad you are well.