Author Topic: Wahoo Elemnt BOLT  (Read 23994 times)

Wahoo Elemnt BOLT
« on: March 19, 2017, 08:39:16 pm »
I've been using my trusty Garmin 500 for the last few years but time has come to upgrade to something with better mapping. The 'breadcrumb' feature is fine but does result in quite a few about-turns. Not a big issue for occasional use but I'm doing LEL this year and reckon after several days I'll end up throwing the thing into a river.

I've reviewed the options and the new Elemnt Bolt looks just the ticket. The only question I have (and it's a big if) is if you can charge the device while recording. I've searched here and on google but can only find a single reference to the original Elemnt and not the BOLT. Does anyone know if the BOLT will support charging while recording?

Ta

Re: Wahoo Elemnt BOLT
« Reply #1 on: March 19, 2017, 09:54:23 pm »
I've got one on order - should be here tomorrow (from Sigma). Using the aero mount sits the Bolt tight up against the stem and effectively blocks the charging socket which is at the bottom (with a blue cover). There are other mounts which should overcome this, inc Wahoo's own stem mount, or the Elemnt out front mount (I think). I can't answer your question directly, but take a look at the unofficial forum - https://groups.google.com/forum/#!forum/wahoo-elemnt-users

I had an original Elemnt but eventually returned it - issues with mapping not rendering and I hated the vague side buttons - I'm hoping this redesign addresses that - certainly the buttons look different.

Edit - looking on the forum it certainly seems possible for the Elemnt, so it should be ok with the Bolt as they are identical inside the case.

Re: Wahoo Elemnt BOLT
« Reply #2 on: March 20, 2017, 10:35:50 am »
I can confirm that it can be charged whilst using. I saw this confirmed by Wahoo themselves on the DC Rainmaker site. I have an Elemnt and I've not had any issues with map rendering so I imagine that this is a bug that they have fixed.

simonp

  • Omnomnomnipotent.
Re: Wahoo Elemnt BOLT
« Reply #3 on: March 20, 2017, 09:19:29 pm »
When the Elemnt (argh keep having to undo the auto-correct - just added to dictionary) first came out I was interested but it seemed to not be the right fit. It seems from DC Rainmaker's review of the Bolt that a lot of missing features have been added via firmware updates.

I got the impression that charging might be possible with the right connector - I'll receive mine in a couple of weeks and I got a down micro USB connector. I had worried that the charging port might not be accessible at all but they've moved it to the rear. I think this arrangement might be more secure than having it on the bottom.

I've become a bit of a Wahoo collector having an RFLKT+, TickrX and KickR already.

Will report back once it arrives and I've tested it out. One issue I need to solve is how to generate routes for it.

Re: Wahoo Elemnt BOLT
« Reply #4 on: March 20, 2017, 09:23:22 pm »

I got the impression that charging might be possible with the right connector - I'll receive mine in a couple of weeks and I got a down micro USB connector. I had worried that the charging port might not be accessible at all but they've moved it to the rear. I think this arrangement might be more secure than having it on the bottom.

I've become a bit of a Wahoo collector having an RFLKT+, TickrX and KickR already.

Will report back once it arrives and I've tested it out. One issue I need to solve is how to generate routes for it.

The charging port is on the bottom, not the rear. Routes are generated in ridewithgps and synced.


simonp

  • Omnomnomnipotent.
Re: Wahoo Elemnt BOLT
« Reply #5 on: March 20, 2017, 10:09:00 pm »

I got the impression that charging might be possible with the right connector - I'll receive mine in a couple of weeks and I got a down micro USB connector. I had worried that the charging port might not be accessible at all but they've moved it to the rear. I think this arrangement might be more secure than having it on the bottom.

I've become a bit of a Wahoo collector having an RFLKT+, TickrX and KickR already.

Will report back once it arrives and I've tested it out. One issue I need to solve is how to generate routes for it.

The charging port is on the bottom, not the rear. Routes are generated in ridewithgps and synced.

On the Elemnt, the charging port is definitely on the underside. Although DC Rainmaker describes it as being "on the bottom" that does not match what is in the pictures on his site:



I would say that's on the rear.

Now, as for the downloading of routes created with RideWithGps - this is not a route I want to go down. So I'll be investigating how to download routes I already have once I get my hands on one. As the device can be accessed as a removable media from a mac or pc, this may allow me to experiment a bit. That's how I get routes onto the Etrex 30 at present.


Re: Wahoo Elemnt BOLT
« Reply #6 on: March 20, 2017, 10:18:48 pm »
Upload routes into RWGPS , then download to Bolt. Can be done wirelessly

Re: Wahoo Elemnt BOLT
« Reply #7 on: March 21, 2017, 12:20:52 am »

I would say that's on the rear.


The rear would be on the back side of the face. The socket is on the bottom. For a Mac to access the Bolt as a drive, Wahoo say 'For Mac Users: An additional application is required to function as an interface'. I have asked them for info on this. Windows can mount as a drive out of the box it seems.

Re: Wahoo Elemnt BOLT
« Reply #8 on: March 21, 2017, 12:10:58 pm »
For Mac you need to use the Android File Transfer program.

Re: Wahoo Elemnt BOLT
« Reply #9 on: March 21, 2017, 12:14:15 pm »
For Mac you need to use the Android File Transfer program.

Ah, useful thanks, I have that for other stuff (although it’s a bit flaky) as I use an Android phone - so presumably the Elemnt is built on Android then?

fuaran

  • rothair gasta
Re: Wahoo Elemnt BOLT
« Reply #10 on: March 21, 2017, 12:45:39 pm »
For Mac you need to use the Android File Transfer program.

Ah, useful thanks, I have that for other stuff (although it’s a bit flaky) as I use an Android phone - so presumably the Elemnt is built on Android then?
Not necessarily.
Sounds like it works as an Media Transfer Protocol (MTP) device. This is pretty standard for any Android or Windows phones, or most MP3 players or cameras etc.
Windows supports MTP as standard, but Mac OS doesn't. So you need some extra software.

simonp

  • Omnomnomnipotent.
Re: Wahoo Elemnt BOLT
« Reply #11 on: March 21, 2017, 02:33:37 pm »
USB cable has arrived.

Just need the Bolt now. :)

Re: Wahoo Elemnt BOLT
« Reply #12 on: March 21, 2017, 07:55:10 pm »
I wonder if a 90-degree cable could be used to charge this, given the proximity of the port to the bars/stem?


simonp

  • Omnomnomnipotent.
Re: Wahoo Elemnt BOLT
« Reply #13 on: March 21, 2017, 08:14:39 pm »
I wonder if a 90-degree cable could be used to charge this, given the proximity of the port to the bars/stem?
.

Rather than left or right I bought a down cable. Pics suggest it should work. To be seen.

Re: Wahoo Elemnt BOLT
« Reply #14 on: March 29, 2017, 08:58:36 pm »
Just received my Elemnt Bolt, not tried the routing yet, but am looking to try all the main available options, RideWithGPS, Komoots, and the "look up place in companion app and get directions to there" feature...
Old enough to know better, but young enough to do it anyway

Re: Wahoo Elemnt BOLT
« Reply #15 on: March 30, 2017, 12:37:27 pm »
My problem with the outfront mount is that the mount for my bar bag gets in the way (on my Hewitt Cheviot tourer), so I'll probably just have to use the basic mount on the stem or handlebars.

I ordered an extra basic mount, hope this will work on my M6R-X Brompton​'s bars when that's ready to collect.
Old enough to know better, but young enough to do it anyway

Re: Wahoo Elemnt BOLT
« Reply #16 on: April 01, 2017, 05:54:18 pm »
Just received my Elemnt Bolt, not tried the routing yet, but am looking to try all the main available options, RideWithGPS, Komoots, and the "look up place in companion app and get directions to there" feature...

Been trying out the routing on the Bolt a little today, though only routes from Komoots and the "look up place in companion app and get directions to there" feature. Both seem to do pretty well, in terms of finding a reasonably sensible route, though I only got Turn by Turn directions and audible warnings/LED alerts of turns when following the Komoot route, the route from the Elemnt companion app location search feature was just an "snake" shown on the Bolt's map, despite it having a route card I could view on the Bolt, which I thought a little disappointing, though the "snake" was easy enough to follow.

After completing the routes, the ride nicely synced back to the Elemnt app and to Strava and RideWithGPS.

I'll try creating a route in RideWithGPS next and will see how following that on the Bolt works.
Old enough to know better, but young enough to do it anyway

vorsprung

  • Opposites Attract
    • Audaxing
Re: Wahoo Elemnt BOLT
« Reply #17 on: April 01, 2017, 06:09:45 pm »
Has anyone used this in heavy rain yet?
Wondering how it performs in real world conditions
Audaxing Blog follow @vorsprungbike on

Re: Wahoo Elemnt BOLT
« Reply #18 on: April 04, 2017, 10:38:18 pm »
I'm still on the fence with the Bolt - what it's capable of, it does very well and with no obvious bugs (assuming the lack of TBT directions for the "look up place in companion app and get directions to there" feature is not a bug), and the phone integration and syncing is fantastic (I have a Google Pixel running Android 7.1), with clear turn by turn directions from Komoots (and you can even create routes on your phone with that and send them to the Bolt whilst out on ride, this can even be done without a network connection, if you pay for offline maps), and presumably from RideWithGPS too (I've still to try this) too, and once you've sent the route to the Bolt, you can turn off the phone (or at least Bluetooth), if desired. The display of the data fields is very clear and the "Perfect Zoom" feature, which lets you easily change how much data is shown on the screen, works very welll.

The main thing that still bugs me a little is that the maps are *very* basic (and small, not surprising considering the unit's size), with no street names displayed, even at max zoom (which only goes as close as 200ft, would be nicer to be able to go closer for tricky turns) and once you zoom out further than 1000 ft are pretty useless in terms of seeing anything helpful, which combined with the lack of being able to pan around the maps really does make the maps *only* really suitable for following existing routes (preferably with Turn by Turn directions - though at least such routes are easy to get onto the device), rather than getting a general sense of orientation and checking what's around you. The lack of colour on the maps also makes differentiating types of roads and tracks difficult.

This is a bit of an issue for me, as the main thing I want a GPS unit on my bike for is navigation - I'm not a competitive cyclist, and don't really need any "training" features (though some basic stats are nice, as is the ease of uploading my rides to Strava and RideWithGPS), but I *do* want to be able to navigate when cycle touring, both for single day 50 mile+ outings, as well as much longer extend touring trips in the UK and abroad. The TBT route display is good, but I think the Bolt is only going to be up to the job if I also regularly check the map on my phone to get a better sense of orientation.

On the other hand, all the current Garmin Edge units with navigation capabilities seem to have major problems (though I have considered getting a secondhand Edge 810), so the alternatives don't seem that great...
Old enough to know better, but young enough to do it anyway

Re: Wahoo Elemnt BOLT
« Reply #19 on: April 05, 2017, 05:23:19 pm »
Thanks for that, Oxford. Very useful info.

I was ready to pull the trigger on a Bolt because a couple of months ago my 810 was driving me mad...freezing, crashing etc. However recently it has been behaving, and I have to say the navigation side of things is excellent.

I'm not sure what I want from a GPS these days. I'm audaxing less on unknown roads but I'm more in need of reliable connectivity for uploading rides automatically to Strava.


Re: Wahoo Elemnt BOLT
« Reply #20 on: April 05, 2017, 07:00:17 pm »
Thanks for that, Oxford. Very useful info.

I was ready to pull the trigger on a Bolt because a couple of months ago my 810 was driving me mad...freezing, crashing etc. However recently it has been behaving, and I have to say the navigation side of things is excellent.

I'm not sure what I want from a GPS these days. I'm audaxing less on unknown roads but I'm more in need of reliable connectivity for uploading rides automatically to Strava.

Well the Elemnt Bolt is fantastic for Strava connectivity, just syncs (via your phone) without having to do anything, can also set it up to sync rides with RideWithGPS and various other online services (I currently have it syncing to BOTH Strava and RideWithGPS

I don't have a paid Strava account, though, so have not tested how it performs with Segments yet (though I guess I could trial a Strava Premium account for free...)

BTW what firmware are you running your Garmin 810 on? I've read that version 5.0 seems pretty solid, but 5.10 was unstable, but they've also recently released firmware 6.10, which has had mixed reports...

Still half thinking of getting an 810 or maybe even Etrex 25 or 35, but those are quite different beasts... The 820 still sounds too flakey.
Old enough to know better, but young enough to do it anyway

Re: Wahoo Elemnt BOLT
« Reply #21 on: April 05, 2017, 08:34:16 pm »
I'm using the latest firmware. In theory it should automatically upload to Strava but it frequently drops the Bluetooth connection (don't know if that is a phone issue or a garmin issue.)

I quite like the idea of being to load up routes without a cable. You can do that on an 810, but only if you plot routes on Garmin connect. ..and Garmin connect is shit for plotting routes.

I have a distinct impression that what shags up the 810 is asking it to do the things it is supposed to do...like strava live segments.

Re: Wahoo Elemnt BOLT
« Reply #22 on: April 05, 2017, 09:43:37 pm »
I'm using the latest firmware. In theory it should automatically upload to Strava but it frequently drops the Bluetooth connection (don't know if that is a phone issue or a garmin issue.)

I quite like the idea of being to load up routes without a cable. You can so that on an 810, but only if you plot routes on Garmin connect. ..and Garmin connect is shit for plotting routes.

I have a distinct impression that what stags up the 810 is asking it to do the things it is supposed to do...like strava live segments.

All the synching on the Bolt has worked flawlessly so far...
Old enough to know better, but young enough to do it anyway

Re: Wahoo Elemnt BOLT
« Reply #23 on: April 06, 2017, 09:30:39 am »
I’m enjoying mine - everything has worked fine so far - it’s nice to have something compact on the bars for a change. The buttons are great - positive and light even with gloves - the side ones a million times better than the original. Sound is very loud - ideal for the hard of hearing! The only disappointment is that the led’s are not that visible in sunlight. Bluetooth is fine, rides upload via wifi to Strava as soon as I get home fine without me doing anything. Sync’d with my RidewithGPS account and downloaded all my routes in a few seconds. Locking onto the GPS signal is taking about a minute, so slower than my Garmin, but ok and it seems to be getting quicker (I understand it pre-loads positioning to speed up this process). I’ve not tried turn by turn as yet.

Ref the mapping - I have a Garmin E1000 and yes, its nice to have everything in colour, but now I’ve concluded it’s a mindset - a simple mono screen with big arrows and warning sounds is really all you need to get around, certainly outside of cities and if you're not going off-road. I find the 200ft scale more than adequate. As a back-up I have a phone in my bag with all manner of maps on it, inc Viewranger OS, so I'll pull that out if I’m really stuck.

cameronp

  • upside down
Re: Wahoo Elemnt BOLT
« Reply #24 on: April 06, 2017, 09:59:34 am »
The main thing that still bugs me a little is that the maps are *very* basic (and small, not surprising considering the unit's size), with no street names displayed, even at max zoom (which only goes as close as 200ft, would be nicer to be able to go closer for tricky turns) and once you zoom out further than 1000 ft are pretty useless in terms of seeing anything helpful, which combined with the lack of being able to pan around the maps really does make the maps *only* really suitable for following existing routes (preferably with Turn by Turn directions - though at least such routes are easy to get onto the device), rather than getting a general sense of orientation and checking what's around you. The lack of colour on the maps also makes differentiating types of roads and tracks difficult.

This is a bit of an issue for me, as the main thing I want a GPS unit on my bike for is navigation - I'm not a competitive cyclist, and don't really need any "training" features (though some basic stats are nice, as is the ease of uploading my rides to Strava and RideWithGPS), but I *do* want to be able to navigate when cycle touring, both for single day 50 mile+ outings, as well as much longer extend touring trips in the UK and abroad. The TBT route display is good, but I think the Bolt is only going to be up to the job if I also regularly check the map on my phone to get a better sense of orientation.

I've been using an Elemnt (non-Bolt) for the last few months and at first I thought I was going to find the maps inadequate, but in practice they've been fine for navigation. My biggest annoyance is that if you get too far off course, the Elemnt can stop displaying the route entirely - something has been overly optimised to keep everything running smoothly on low-powered hardware, at the expense of usefulness. One thing that I do is have the "distance to next cue" visible on one of my data pages and then switch to the map page (zoomed in fairly closely) as needed.

I used RideWithGPS for all of my mapping because that's what Audax Oz have standardised on, and it integrates beautifully with the Elemnt.

I’m enjoying mine - everything has worked fine so far - it’s nice to have something compact on the bars for a change. The buttons are great - positive and light even with gloves - the side ones a million times better than the original. Sound is very loud - ideal for the hard of hearing! The only disappointment is that the led’s are not that visible in sunlight.

Interestingly, that's the opposite of my experience with the original Elemnt: sound is not loud enough but the LEDs are plenty bright, even in direct Australian summer sunlight.