Cannondale Synapse Neo

Nev

Esteemed Pedelecer
May 1, 2018
647
672
North Wales
I weighed the Neo yesterday came out to 18.46 kg, which is a fair bit heavier than the Orbea Gain I think.

This past week I have stopped wearing my cold weather clothing and switched to fairly tight fitting summer cycling clothing. Its surprising how much of a difference that makes, I think I'm around 1.5 to 2 mph quicker on average for the same level of my effort when riding above cut off speeds.
 

Nev

Esteemed Pedelecer
May 1, 2018
647
672
North Wales
I did 51 miles and well over 2000 ft of ascent yesterday on the Neo. I still had 3 bars of battery left at the end of the ride. So if my body could cope with it (couldn't at the moment) then the bike would easily be capable of 100 miles or more on one charge.

As an indication one of the lads with me was on a Cube e-mtb equipped with the CX motor, and he had only 1 bar left. Although his bike is a lot heavier than mine, I weigh more than him so the combination of rider plus bike weight would be about the same.

He did have mtb tyres on though so his rolling resistance would be a lot higher than mine. His battery is about a year old, but has only done about 800 miles and he looks after it. Keeps it indoors and at about 30 to 40% charged if he wont be using it for a while, and charges it on the day he is going to use it.

For most of the ride I just kept it in either sport or turbo mode, I now do this most of the time, however I ride above cut off speed a lot. I don't tend to bother with either Eco or Tour mode. I find that if I am riding along in Eco or Tour mode at say 14 or 15 mph without much effort. I will put it into Sport or Turbo accelerate up to about 18 mph and then stay at around that speed (ie using no battery) but every now and then if there is a bit of an incline my speed will drop and the motor will cut in.
 

GLJoe

Esteemed Pedelecer
May 21, 2017
401
168
UK
Other things that make a noticeable difference ... tyres pumped up as hard as they can take...
That's indeed been the conventional wisdom for decades.
However recently ... some people bothered to do some testing and look at the actual data ;)
 

GLJoe

Esteemed Pedelecer
May 21, 2017
401
168
UK
Unfortunately it does not look as though I will be able to use the battery from the Neo in my MTB. Even though they are both 500 wh, the shop didn't think they would fit.
Have you double checked this?
You might be right, but I've not yet come across any manufacturers that have bosch motors but custom battery units - they all seem to be standard parts (just with custom decals!)
(unlike say Giant who use Yamaha motors but do have their own custom battery housings)
It would be interesting to know for certain.
 

sjpt

Esteemed Pedelecer
Jun 8, 2018
390
142
The Bosch downtube and rack batteries have different fittings; at least I think that was the reason I couldn't fit a neighbour's Cube downtube battery in my Motus rack. As far as I know the different bike manufacturers don't have differences in that battery apart from that.
 

Nev

Esteemed Pedelecer
May 1, 2018
647
672
North Wales
The Bosch downtube and rack batteries have different fittings; at least I think that was the reason I couldn't fit a neighbour's Cube downtube battery in my Motus rack. As far as I know the different bike manufacturers don't have differences in that battery apart from that.
I think this is what they told me in the shop when I bought the Neo, but I will have a good look at both batteries either today or more likely tomorrow.
 

GLJoe

Esteemed Pedelecer
May 21, 2017
401
168
UK
The Bosch downtube and rack batteries have different fittings; at least I think that was the reason I couldn't fit a neighbour's Cube downtube battery in my Motus rack.
Er ... well yes. I (possibly foolishly) assumed that was a given!
As far as I am aware, there are three current 'standards' of Bosch battery type.
Rear rack mount.
The most common frame mount
The more recent , totally enclosed in-tube type.

All three are different in appearance and I'd have thought it was obvious that one wouldn't physically fit into bikes designed for a different type.

However if you have say a frame type battery, you can take this from ANY manufacturer's bike, and use it in ANY other bike that also uses a Bosch frame type. Same for in-tube etc.
 
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DLB

Finding my (electric) wheels
Mar 24, 2019
20
14
It’s been a few weeks and I have to say I really am loving this bike.
It’s just so easy to ride, and I still haven’t found any hills that have caused it any problems.
Had a nice hilly ride today and the bike just did it’s job. So much so that I think I may even repeat it tomorrow
Check out the link below.

 
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DLB

Finding my (electric) wheels
Mar 24, 2019
20
14
Oh while I’m here just a quick note to anyone else with a Neo. Keep an eye on the seat bolts. Mine had worked a little loose and just as I was getting home the seat came loose. As a result of this I lost one of the small barrel fixings that the bolt goes into.
Here lies the problem.
The barrels are unique size to the Cannondales rails on the Save Seatpost and you can’t get them in a bike shop.
They have to be ordered direct from a Cannondale Supplier.
Price £14.99.
I’ve had to use an oversized one on mine until I can get a replacement from Cannondale next week.
 
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bike4fun

Just Joined
May 14, 2019
1
1
I have been riding the synapse neo se for a few month now, and what I can tell you is this: If the bike is a means of transportation, closing distances without sweating but also having a vehicle to go to have fun explicitely not using support, the synapse neo is a great deal. Soft offroad feels great, also that you can face a curbstone opposed to a racing bike where you have to worry about flats in that situation does stand out on a gravel bike configuration.

It does have custom tire dimensions, as it has custom nuts for securing the tires which can be refitted for obvious reasons, but if you want to emphasize having a bike to be a sports tool to focus on your sportive capability, maybe the Orbea may be the right choice.

I am happy with the Cannondale as I use it to expand my range in the city taking the place of a scooter while providing me the control to be a sports vehicle if I choose so. I use max support so traffic lights do not bother me, but I can still push my limits if I want to which is most of the time. I am very glad about my choice in the urban area, and I can say that the climbs or wind I encounter, I can completely tackle them effordlessly if I choose to ride with support.

I would prefere to have a flatbar instead the racing cockpit which I do not see a use to me at least, but the version with flatbar has worse components so I stuck to the neo se.

But to sum it up, I love this bike, I am very happy about the Bosch drive as well. While many people are concerned about the weight, I can tell you from experience that the only time it bothers me is, when I am carrying it up several stories into my appartement. Otherwise, with or without support this bike feels very agile and nimble. But this is subjective, of course if you want to create your own oppinion you should take it for a ride and compare it to its adversaries.

Addition: The saddle is probably the most personal part since it is the most important interface of the bike, when you buy it it should be one of the first parts that has to be adjusted to you.
 
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Crambie

Finding my (electric) wheels
Dec 8, 2018
11
2
18
My Neo SE arrived today, the 650b one. It seems good so far, couldn't spend much time on it though.

There was a really decent headwind along the cliffs and was still doing 16-16.5 without really trying. I never felt the power just stop and start it tapers it smoothly. I hardly ever heard the motor, only when I was doing a very slow U turn and even then it was no noisier than the tyres.

I tried the steepest places around here which are a 16% road and 20%+ cobbled cuts from the beach level to the cliff top, neither particularly long but it was fine. You do have to work out the best way to get the best assist, on this either a gear where you pedal slowly or spin. But you had to tweak your style on the hub drive too.

You really don't notice the weight once you're going and it's not insanely heavy anyway, well not compared to my brother's Cube FS with Bosch CX. I wondered if it would and it does remind me quite a lot of a 90's mtb (apart from the drops) and that's a good thing to me. The tyres measure a bit wider than indicated, about 49mm. They roll really well though with the slick centre but are fine when you get a bit off road too. I like the tan walls on them. I don't know if I'll do tubeless, will chat with my brother (they run 35-55psi, which I'd normally call flat)

I did sometimes try to use the lever blade to shift to a lower gear and did sometimes go up a gear and not down but that's just me needing to get used to sram (I think Shimano did it right with STI). I was expecting it to be a bit harder on the fingers changing down than it is.

I'll make sure to keep checking the bolts.

There are a few minor'ish things. In my opinion the drop bar ones are a slight rip off when you see how much the flat bar one costs and what you get with it. Fortunately I got a big enough discount it didn't matter. The "colours" are rather boring, black or grey whereas they have some nice colours on the pedal synapses. The seat binder on the pedal synapses is hidden and neat, no reason they couldn't have done the same on the neo's. On the SE they cheaped out a bit by using the same bars rather than flared gravel bar.

I still think it's cheap of companies not to include pedals when you're spending thousands yet they're usually included on cheaper bikes. But it has been like that for ages and people seem just accept it for some reason.
 
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Crambie

Finding my (electric) wheels
Dec 8, 2018
11
2
18
I have been riding the synapse neo se for a few month now, and what I can tell you is this: If the bike is a means of transportation, closing distances without sweating but also having a vehicle to go to have fun explicitely not using support, the synapse neo is a great deal. Soft offroad feels great, also that you can face a curbstone opposed to a racing bike where you have to worry about flats in that situation does stand out on a gravel bike configuration.

It does have custom tire dimensions, as it has custom nuts for securing the tires which can be refitted for obvious reasons, but if you want to emphasize having a bike to be a sports tool to focus on your sportive capability, maybe the Orbea may be the right choice.

I am happy with the Cannondale as I use it to expand my range in the city taking the place of a scooter while providing me the control to be a sports vehicle if I choose so. I use max support so traffic lights do not bother me, but I can still push my limits if I want to which is most of the time. I am very glad about my choice in the urban area, and I can say that the climbs or wind I encounter, I can completely tackle them effordlessly if I choose to ride with support.

I would prefere to have a flatbar instead the racing cockpit which I do not see a use to me at least, but the version with flatbar has worse components so I stuck to the neo se.

But to sum it up, I love this bike, I am very happy about the Bosch drive as well. While many people are concerned about the weight, I can tell you from experience that the only time it bothers me is, when I am carrying it up several stories into my appartement. Otherwise, with or without support this bike feels very agile and nimble. But this is subjective, of course if you want to create your own oppinion you should take it for a ride and compare it to its adversaries.

Addition: The saddle is probably the most personal part since it is the most important interface of the bike, when you buy it it should be one of the first parts that has to be adjusted to you.
Not sure what you mean by custom tyre dimensions, it's just an off the shelf wtb bypass. Don't think the through axles are custom either although you obviously need the correct lengths.

The flat bar version does have lower spec components but Deore's not exactly rubbish, plus a bit of XT too, and it has quite a few extras. When you look at the difference in price, far more than the difference in groupset, far, far more if you take in to account the extras, then it's obvious that they're thinking that road riders will put up with the higher inflated price, flat bar people won't.

If they did a 650b flat I would have gone with that too. It's possible I'll convert it but will give it a while before I think about that. Plus converting sram to flat doesn't seem as straightforward as swapping levers as they don't seem to sell them separately. So it could be that you have to dump the levers and callipers and swap to shimano plus the apex 1 shifter pod.

As it was I got mine with £700 off so if I do convert to flats, even if I need to swap to shimano brakes, it will still be cheaper than the best price I've seen for the flat version. Plus grey is very slightly less boring then black.
 

Roberticus

Pedelecer
Mar 4, 2018
34
14
60
Rotherham
Just joined the Neo 'club'
Went for a test ride on Sunday, loved it. Really comfy ,relaxed ride and very smooth to pedal. Oh and it's bright red !
Not been out on it yet as I've been a bit ropey the last couple of days but should manage tomorrow. Can't wait !
 
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DLB

Finding my (electric) wheels
Mar 24, 2019
20
14
Just joined the Neo 'club'
Went for a test ride on Sunday, loved it. Really comfy ,relaxed ride and very smooth to pedal. Oh and it's bright red !
Not been out on it yet as I've been a bit ropey the last couple of days but should manage tomorrow. Can't wait !
 

DLB

Finding my (electric) wheels
Mar 24, 2019
20
14
I’m sure you will love it.
Not used mine for a week or so due to terrible weather.
The bike is amazing and eats up the miles.
 
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Roberticus

Pedelecer
Mar 4, 2018
34
14
60
Rotherham
Well, went out on the Neo today. Absolutely loved it. Took it on one of my regular routes and was really pleased with how it performs. Then the saddle fell off ! Had just set off from a junction when I felt the saddle move ,so I stopped and dismounted and the saddle fell off, one of the seat bolts had disappeared!
Had to get t'missus to recover me.
Will be taking it back to Evans tomorrow to be sorted. Needs the gears sorting as front won't drop onto smaller ring and the back is a bit clunky!
I'm guessing the only prep it has had was straightening the handlebars when it came out of the box !
Not been a very good experience shopping at Evans so far, nearly walked out on Sunday but have been wanting this bike for ages and wanted a shop close to home in case anything goes wrong........!
 
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DLB

Finding my (electric) wheels
Mar 24, 2019
20
14
The same happened to mine.
The seat retaining barrels are specific to the Cannondale Seatpost. The small barrels that sit on top of the bolt are smaller than standard barrels and can only be replaced/ sourced direct from Cannondale. They cost ££14.99 plus delivery.
I got mine replaced by the bike shop I purchased the bike from.
I spoke with Cannondale who advised me that the probable reason this had happened was incorrect torque being applied when the bike was built.
It took two weeks to get the barrels sent out to me.
I’ve now replaced them and have not had any problems since.
 
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Roberticus

Pedelecer
Mar 4, 2018
34
14
60
Rotherham
That seems quite ridiculous doesn't it ?
When I went for my bike the seatpost was badly scratched so they swopped it
off another Neo they had in. Assume this is when the seat post bolts weren't tightened enough Taking bike in today to be sorted using bits off this other Neo !
 

DLB

Finding my (electric) wheels
Mar 24, 2019
20
14
Yes I agree.
I had to use a larger barrel to hold it in place until I got the replacements.
You have to be careful as the Cannondale ones are smaller and fit into a receiving groove on the clamp. The larger non standard to not fit so you have to be careful when tightening not to cause damage to the carbon.
It kept me going until I had replacements sent.
They can be ordered direct from Cannondale but just like me I let the store sort it out.
Having said that it probably would have been quicker if I had ordered them.
The part ref is : K26007
Just in case.
 

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