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  1. #1
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    Switched to Wahoo Bolt

    I have run a Garmin for 15 years+. Most recent was a 510 that lasted the better part of 6 years. It finally started acting funny.

    I love the Wahoo Elemnt Bolt. I don't do turn by turn navigation. I am an avid XC rider who loves metrics though (100+ miles a week). The backlit screen is great for under the canopy. I used to struggle with the 510 and visibility while riding in all conditions.

    It's only 2 weeks in, but I haven't lost an upload yet. I used to lose 3 a month on the Garmin for lord knows what. I love the ease with which I can switch the screen around. I also don't need different big rigs. I overloaded the Bolt with 1 power meter, 2 speed sensors, and a heart rate monitor. It picks them up accordingly and I don't need to change over to a different "bike" on the computer.

    So far - love it... Thanks for the advice on the forum.

  2. #2
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    Quote Originally Posted by SSNut View Post
    I have run a Garmin for 15 years+. Most recent was a 510 that lasted the better part of 6 years. It finally started acting funny.

    I love the Wahoo Elemnt Bolt. I don't do turn by turn navigation. I am an avid XC rider who loves metrics though (100+ miles a week). The backlit screen is great for under the canopy. I used to struggle with the 510 and visibility while riding in all conditions.

    It's only 2 weeks in, but I haven't lost an upload yet. I used to lose 3 a month on the Garmin for lord knows what. I love the ease with which I can switch the screen around. I also don't need different big rigs. I overloaded the Bolt with 1 power meter, 2 speed sensors, and a heart rate monitor. It picks them up accordingly and I don't need to change over to a different "bike" on the computer.

    So far - love it... Thanks for the advice on the forum.
    Garmin addressed a lot of those issues with the 510.

    Namely the bike profile crap they used for awhile. I hated that crap, too. I don't have any power meters, but I have 2 speed sensors, a cadence sensor, and a HRM and the 520 doesn't care which "bike" I'm on (there's not even a setting for that anymore). It has different "ride" profiles, but those don't have anything to do with paired sensors. All those do are change the displayed data fields and you can use them with any bike/sensor combo. Sensors with settings (like wheel circumference on speed sensors) have those settings applied to the sensor, so whenever the computer picks up that particular sensor, the correct settings are applied.

    Nice that the Bolt just works, though. How many rides have you done in your 2 weeks of ownership? What sort of battery life do you get out of it? That's an issue I have with a lot of computers nowadays. 15hrs is considered "good battery life" and I'm just not happy with that. I consider it bare minimum, but I'd prefer 20+hrs.

  3. #3
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    Lovin the Bolt here too. First bike computer that was any better than the typical Walmart $25 speedometer type. I had previously been using my phone and either Endomondo or Strava, paired to a Wahoo Tickr X and didnt really have any complaints, except for it being a touch screen that doesnt respond well to sweaty hands.

    Having stats on my bars is nice, phone safely tucked away. Also kinda hooked on the Strava live srgments in my neverending quest to improve.

    Live tracking function of the Bolt is damn nice too, at least for general safety on my usual local rides. (The almighty Inreach satcom comes out for bigger rides out of cell range though.)

  4. #4
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    Agreed Thoreau!

    As to the battery question, I have taken it out for 12 rides at about 25 hours. I charge it around 6 hours of use. It shows between 50 and 75% at that point. I am going to guess stressed it would run 15 hours. Without turn by turn, I am guessing 20 hours of life based upon averages. I can give it a run and see how long it lasts before croaking with regular use...

  5. #5
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    Just bit the bullet and bought a Bolt myself (triple points weekend at Performance bike got it down to almost the price of the crappy Lezyne I had previously).

  6. #6
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    Just bought one, too, though itís my first bike GPS unit. Quite pleased with it.
    Just like a raindrop, I was born to fall.

  7. #7
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    Yeah i switched from Garmin to Wahoo this winter and it's night and day.

  8. #8
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    I got one about 3 months ago, and like it better than my 520, especially when it comes to controlling my Kickr. Zoom in / out is also a great feature.

  9. #9
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    I just bought one too! Love how easy it is to customize the screens. As soon as I'm home, it's connected to my wifi and uploaded my ride.

    Only issue I've had is the auto-pause is too sensitive. I do steep, slow climbs (in trees) and it pauses while I'm grinding it out. I tried turning it off but I forget to resume my ride. Might just keep it off and never pause.

  10. #10
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    Switched from 5+ years with a Garmin to a Wahoo Bolt and not looking back. Everything is better, setup using the smartphone app is how it should be done. The zoom in/out is really handy, more so then I thought until I used it the first time. I also have a KICKR and it of course works extremely well with it.

  11. #11
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    Thinking about switching out my 510 to a 520 plus. After reading about the Wahoo I am having second thoughts. What is the difference between the bolt and element? I only see the element on Amazon.

    Pretty much I like the idea of Trail Forks on the computer hence why I was looking at the 520 plus.

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by Hulka View Post
    Thinking about switching out my 510 to a 520 plus. After reading about the Wahoo I am having second thoughts. What is the difference between the bolt and element? I only see the element on Amazon.

    Pretty much I like the idea of Trail Forks on the computer hence why I was looking at the 520 plus.
    The Element has a larger screen and two sets of LEDs but otherwise I think they're much the same.
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  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by JohnMcL7 View Post
    The Element has a larger screen and two sets of LEDs but otherwise I think they're much the same.
    Thank you sir!


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  14. #14
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    I have the bolt and love it. It's screen is comparable to the 510 I had. I looked at the Elemnt, but the bolt was plenty for when riding. The always on backlight makes it far easier to read than the 510 I had as well. Garmin may have added that feature on a newer model, but it wasn't on the older 510 I had.

  15. #15
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    Used to love my Garmin Edge 510. Got sick of the unit losing rides and randomly having miscellanious bike profiles in there.
    My dad's Edge 510 was replaced once under warranty after 13 months, and then kept losing rides and being stupid after another year and a half.
    Mine at 4 years, his two at three years combined. We both dumped Garmin.
    I took a chance on an Elemnt for road, and then an Elemnt Bolt for mountain.

    Much, MUCH, MUCH better. No failed uploads, no droped rides, no freezes, no failures of any kind for either my Elemnt, or Bolt, nor my dad's Bolt.


    The Elemnt is MUCH larger and thinner than the BOLT. It also has two rows of LEDS (whooptie doo) for fast visual information.
    I find the BOLT to be much more of a mountain bike computer, as you can't fit as much on the screen in any reasonable size. My Elemnt, I have 9 data fields open. My Bolt, I use 4-5.
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  16. #16
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    Thank you!


    Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk Pro

  17. #17
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    Where do you mount it?

  18. #18
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    Its my first computer and I'm a noob but I like it. The back light is great and I can't complain about anything.

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  19. #19
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    I've been on both sides using a variety of Garmin's for quite a few years, then using a Bolt and now using a Garmin again.

    For reference, my most recent Garmin's are the 1000 and 1030. I also have an older 510. The Bolt I have was mainly used on a Emonda road bike, not on my mountain bikes.

    The Bolt size and set up are both fantastic. It's small and light, and technically more aero, but the aero part likely less of an issue on a mtn bike. Battery life is great. It picks up powermeters, HR sensors, etc, without issues. I did have a problem initially with Di2 on my road bike, but it likely had more to do with a faulty Di2 battery than with the Bolt. The only other issue with connectivity that I ran into was my LG V20 android phone. It often wouldn't connect and required me to reboot the phone, after which it always connected. I think this is something funky with my phone though.

    For me, the downside of the Bolt was the integration with some other things. On my road bike I have Di2, and you can't change the screens on the Bolt with the Di2 buttons, something you can do on Garmins. It also doesn't work with Garmin's Varia radar system. You can use a separate head unit for the Varia, but that means mounting something else on your bars. Finally, the Garmin integrates better with lights, including Bontrager's. For mtn biking, many of these things are less relevant so they might not be a big deal for you.

    One of Garmin's strengths are the apps. I use Trailforks a lot when travelling to areas I haven't been before. I used to pull out my phone and you MTB Project or Trailforks, but now I just use the Trailforks app. There are a few other apps I like on the Garmin side as well.

    The Garmin fitness statistics are ok, but may be important to some. I sync all my rides with Strava, Trainerroad and Training Peaks, and this worked equally well with the Bolt or the Garmin. I do like seeing the training impact data Garmin spits out after a ride, but honestly I don't really do anything with it.

    Ultimately it's good to have options as well as competition in the market. I don't think Garmin would be innovating if it weren't for companies like Wahoo pushing them.

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