Sunday, July 7, 2019

More Rides, More Miles, More Fun...E-8000

I've had plenty of time to settle in with my ICE Sprint FS Steps E8000. My main concern, thinking I would always be tempted to overuse the assist, has waned. I like the feeling of using my own muscle power to ride but I don't like hills for reasons talked about in my last post, Climbing With the E8000. And the west coast has more than enough hills to climb. Also worried that my ego would take a hit. I waited a good year before popping on the E-Assist. Ego is intact and better then ever as the assist has become a game changer for me. More rides, more miles, more fun.

Here is how I've settled in with the E8000 and hopefully it might be of some value in helping others who are on the fence about making a decision to go with an assist.  

Let me start out my mentioning that the Shimano Steps E8000 has three pedal assist modes. 
1. ECO - 70% support 
2. TRAIL - 150% support
3. BOOST - 230% support

I keep the assist OFF on descents and OFF or on ECO riding the flats and slight ascents. I find that ECO compensates for the weight of the trike and it feels more like I'm pedaling my Catrike 700. That leaves TRAIL and BOOST. The TRAIL mode serves most of my climbing needs but I switch over to BOOST as the grade steepens. So far this year my local rides have averaged 71 feet of gain for every
one mile. The BOOST takes me up the hills so comfortably I've been able to extend my rides.  I reach the batteries limit before I reach my physical limits. I feel like I can just keep going all day but I'll need to carry another battery in my pannier for that to happen. 

E8014 Battery
Right now with the E8014 - 418Wh battery I get a range of about 40 miles where I ride. Climbing sucks up a lot of power. I'll be purchasing an extra battery, the E8010 - 504Wh. But it's not available until September so I'll have to be happy staying under 40 miles per ride or load the trike into my car and find less hilly areas to ride. When I have two batteries on board I hope to squeeze out 100 hilly miles. Carrying the weight (2.6kg - 5.7lbs) of a second battery is not a problem. I have little help. (BTW... the E8014 battery is only a couple of ounces (.05kg) lighter.)

There's more, using the BOOST to get through dicey road conditions such as construction zones and busy intersections is awesome.

And yes...I get plenty of exercise. I'm riding more often and more miles without climbing anxiety. The only thing I'm not doing is getting my heart rate up to where the exercise gurus say it should be.   Even without an assist I climb so slow that my heart rate never did reach the "optimal range". But  I must be doing something right. After my last stress test a couple of months ago I had to work pretty damn hard to get my heart rate to where the doctor wanted it for testing. More on that in my next post.


  1. I concur with everything you shared. I also own an e-assist "750w Bafang" on a Sprint X 26". It has become the best recovery "post cardio/cancer" piece of equipment ever. You are spot on when saying "more rides, more miles, more fun." Wish you the best and ride well Sir.

    1. And all the best to you. Enjoy the ride and stay strong!

  2. Excellent review, we ride a much heavier TT Rover Tandem Trike with a NuVinci N330 CVT rear hub and a Efneo 3 speed IG gear in front and were thinking of either going to a Roloff 14 speed rear IG hub or a E-assist system. After reading a few reviews like yours, I think we will be looking into a E-assist system by Jan. 2020! :)

  3. You won't be sorry. I've already added many more miles since this post.