Clip ins

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Clip ins

Postby grantc84 » Mon Sep 29, 2008 8:38 am

Hi guys, I have just recently gotten back into the mtb scene and am enjoying rides most weekend down at lysterfield. Just wondering what difference people think clip in shoes make? There are a fair few small jumps on the tracks there so what are they like for that?
Also what type would you reccomend / average price for pedal and shoe?
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by BNA » Mon Sep 29, 2008 2:24 pm

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Postby Kalgrm » Mon Sep 29, 2008 2:24 pm

G'day Grant,

Welcome to the forum.

Clipless pedals (as they are known) help me stay connected to the bike and make me feel more secure when hitting technical stuff, up or down, or over, as the case may be.

They also help provide better (smoother) power transfer to the pedals, meaning I'm less likely to lose traction when climbing or accelerating out of a corner.

I wouldn't ride the mountain bike off road without them now. I don't feel like the bike is part of me if I use platform pedals.

(Edit: or are you actually referring to toe clips with straps for your feet? If so, avoid them for MTB riding.)

The price of shoes is around $120 (for Specialized brand) and pedals can be $60 to $300, depending on what you get. I love Crank Brothers Eggbeater pedals (especially the SL ones, $120 from Chain Reaction), but you'll get good performance from most systems.

Cheers,
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Postby grantc84 » Mon Sep 29, 2008 3:29 pm

Thanks for that. Yer no way would I go for the toe clips. Used them about 6 years ago when I did a lot of riding in my younger days and found them to be a death trap.
I've done are fair bit of searching and googling today and a lot of people say the crank brother eggbeaters are good. Do they have the ability to tighten how hard it is to get in and out of? Do most shoes work on any pedal?
Sorry for all questions but haven't really gotten to know guys at local bike shops yet and not sure on how helpful they are so want as much info before I go in so I "sound" like I know what im on about.

Oh and from what I read today I should expect a few good falls when I first get them especially when going to stop.
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Postby Kalgrm » Mon Sep 29, 2008 3:50 pm

Eggbeaters don't have any adjustment for "tightness", but you don't need it. They are easy to get into and out of. The release angle is determined by the positioning of the cleat and choosing which cleat to put on which foot (they are asymmetric, so swapping the feet gives you either 15º or 25º (?) release angle.

You really can't pull your foot off the pedal unless you want to, so tightening them is not needed. The only time your foot might be released accidentally is if you hit the pedal on a rock, opening the pedal. It's only happened once to me in the two years I've been using them though, so it's not a problem.

I've never taken a slow speed spill in these pedals, but I did when I first started using clipless on a MTB. They were Shimano pedals, but the brand is irrelevant - you are likely to fall once or twice when you're not used to disengaging before stopping, regardless of the brand. I've never been trapped in Eggbeaters though - I seem to unclip almost subconsciously from them.

You will need MTB shoes to fit MTB cleats (ie "SPD compatible shoes"). Some road shoes have the right bolt pattern too, but they leave the cleat sitting proud of the sole of the shoe, making walking in the shoe difficult. Sometimes, regrettably, you will need to walk ... ;)

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Postby grantc84 » Mon Sep 29, 2008 4:04 pm

Thanks a lot you have been very helpfull. I am convinced I need them...........especially for the uphill sections.
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Postby Kalgrm » Mon Sep 29, 2008 4:42 pm

One more thing - if you get Eggbeaters, don't be tempted by their "Candies" or other platform versions - the proper eggbeater style of pedal is easier to get into and allows a little more float.

I bought some Candies and didn't like them as much as my orginal Eggbeaters, so I sold them off. I couldn't abide the rubbing of the platform on the soles of my shoes.

And yes, they are great up hills .....

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Postby grantc84 » Mon Sep 29, 2008 6:49 pm

Excuse my stupidity but what do you mean by allows a little more float? So your opinion is that clip ins with a bit of a platform as well are not as good? As someone who hasn't used them before the only problem I can see with non platform (looking at pictures of crank brother range) is that they just look tiny i guess. But once your clicked in I guess size doesn't matter. lol.
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Postby rog on a bike » Mon Sep 29, 2008 7:52 pm

Hi grantc84

I agree with everything Greame has said, with one exception. You will note , Greame is coming from a pro position re clipped feet on MTBs.
That's something I disagree with.
On the bent and roadie I run spd.
On the FSR enduro I now run flat top pedals with plastic toe clips and the straps removed. I used to have a set of crank brothers egg beaters but got sick of injuries caused by not being able to release quickly enough.
You need to be sure what works for you, the toe clips position my feet exactly where I want them on the pedal and believe it or not you will get some positive drive on the up stroke after about the 8.30 position, leaving your feet free should you get hooked up or snagged.
Remember there is no right or wrong way with this, it's simply what works best for you.

Cheers Rog
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Postby toolonglegs » Mon Sep 29, 2008 8:22 pm

I feel weird if I am not clipped in..I run XT pedals and carbon sole shimano shoes.Works for me.
I agree that some people like running flat pedals and some like being clipped.Don't agree that being clipped is more likely to make you fall off.I have never had a problem releasing my foot even in the toughest terrain...so really it depends what sort of terrain you will be riding.
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Postby Kalgrm » Mon Sep 29, 2008 8:36 pm

G'day Grant,

Float is the amount of sideways movement (pivoting) the pedal allows whilst still clipped in. With Eggbeaters, I can twist my foot freely until the foot unclips, which means I'm less likely to hurt my knees when I move around on the bike. And on a MTB, I need to move around a fair bit.

I initially had SPD pedals with a platform around the pedal (PD-540s?), and they were okay for starting out, but I found the Eggbeaters much more positive to clip in with and much easier to pull out of when desired, even with the SPDs loosened off to their minimum settings. I'll never go back to Shimano SPDs now.

I'd obviously disagree with Rog about getting out of Eggbeaters in a hurry, but that's okay - everyone has differing experiences. I'd also have to disagree with Rog (strongly) about coming from a Pro perspective! :) If Rog had ever met me, he'd see just how bizarre that statement is: I've only been in two MTB races, neither of which was a serious attempt at winning anything. I'm just a hack who loves riding.

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Postby rog on a bike » Mon Sep 29, 2008 9:08 pm

Greame

And I the same mate, just a hack that doesn't heal as fast as I used to.
The pro reference was, that of the for case and not that of the opposed position, in the debate.

Cheers Rog
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Postby grantc84 » Mon Sep 29, 2008 9:13 pm

Thanks guys. Well I ride cross country that has a fair bit of technical stuff but I am pretty confident and rarely "need" to put feet down while attempting it so cant see I will need to more with clipless. Thanks for the help guys.
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Postby Kalgrm » Mon Sep 29, 2008 11:11 pm

rog on a bike wrote:Greame

And I the same mate, just a hack that doesn't heal as fast as I used to.
The pro reference was, that of the for case and not that of the opposed position, in the debate.

Cheers Rog

Ah - that makes much more sense! I'm far happier to be labelled as "in favour of" rather than an expert cyclist. :D

Cheers,
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Postby acorn » Tue Sep 30, 2008 8:26 pm

I have shimano PD-M520 with northwave lizard shoes

the shimano pedals has worked well. I have to say I hate damaging the base of the shoe but you cannot stop that happening when walking on rocks.

How tight should I make the pedals? (my foot has never came out)
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Postby Mulger bill » Tue Sep 30, 2008 9:23 pm

Back off the tension a bit at a time Acorn. When you do come out, tighten one click.

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Postby Deanj » Tue Sep 30, 2008 9:27 pm

Missed this thread,

Everything Graeme said, eggbeaters!!
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Postby grantc84 » Wed Oct 01, 2008 9:04 am

One more thing. When you guys started off using clipless how often did you want to not be clipped in and would want to just stand on pedals. As obviously cannot do this with eggbeaters.
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Postby Kalgrm » Wed Oct 01, 2008 9:20 am

That's going to be a hard one to answer with any relevance to you.

I "went clipless" within a week of taking up MTB riding for the first time, so I was still quite inexperienced with off-road riding. Combined with some fairly hairy tracks, it meant I was not clipped in more often that I should have been.

However, I soon learned (through painful lessons) that I was much better off clipped in and that those tracks were much more negotiable if I were connected to the bike securely. My inexperience was causing me to be tentative when I shouldn't have been.

Another reason why my experience would be less relevant for you was that I was on Shimano pedals, not Eggbeaters. I am sure that, had I been on Eggbeaters, I would have felt more confident about being able to unclip in an emergency and would not have felt the desire to be unclipped for "quick dabs". Eggbeaters release more easily.

Cheers,
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Postby grantc84 » Wed Oct 01, 2008 1:06 pm

Well I made a decision. Just saw a set of SL eggbeaters on e-bay for a good price so thought why not. Once I get the shoes I will let you know how I find them......and how many times I fall over. Will give my riding buddies a laugh anyway.
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Postby Kalgrm » Wed Oct 01, 2008 5:00 pm

Good to hear. You'll love them.

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Postby grantc84 » Mon Oct 13, 2008 6:48 am

Ok I got some shoes on the weekend and gave the pedals a run down at lysterfield lake. They work great. Took me a while to get them in sometimes trying to find the cleat on the bottom of my shoe. Very easy to get out of them when you want to. Thanks for all the advice guys.
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Postby Mulger bill » Tue Oct 14, 2008 9:23 pm

grantc84 wrote:Took me a while to get them in sometimes trying to find the cleat on the bottom of my shoe.


Don't look at your feet as you clip in Grant, your legs will work it out easier without your eyes confusing the issue.

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Postby grantc84 » Wed Oct 15, 2008 6:34 am

Ah thanks for the tip. Must be why it got easier as ride went on and wasn't really looking at the pedals. When I was trying to do it by looking I couldn't get one in for like 2 minutes....was frustrating but got the hang of it by the end.
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Postby mountain tamer » Wed Oct 15, 2008 3:22 pm

Thanks for the discussion guys Ive been a silent observer, lots of great info in there. I was previously very apprehensive about cleats, but to hear that they give Greater security on the rough stuff was assuring because i have lost my feet a couple of times and scraped down my shins and calves with my pedals (dont try this, very painful!)

I am getting a new MTB in Nov and it comes with Shimano M520 pedals, I might ask for a swap to eggbeaters.

My question is about shoes. Does anyone have any they would recommend, i need ones that are good quality and can take a lot of walking (the nature of tracks in my area). are there any features in particular (apart from weight saving) that are worth getting? some brands that are good?

cheers :D ,

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Postby Kalgrm » Wed Oct 15, 2008 3:40 pm

My Specialized shoes are very comfortable (good arch support), the sole is stiff and they were not too expensive ($120), but I was disappointed with the fact that within 15km of off-road riding in rocky ground, the leading edge of the uppers around the toes had been ripped by rock I had put my feet onto. The rips don't go all the way through - just cosmetic, but they should be tougher than that. It's the choice of material used that's the problem: a synthetic leather instead of tough rubber. My old Shimano ones never ripped like these did, but they weren't as stiff or as comfortable either.

My advice is to firstly get ones that feel comfortable, then look for durability in the construction. A stiff sole is important for riding, but a more flexy one might be good for when you're still finding your way on the MTB (ie walking a lot).

Cheers,
Graeme
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