Pedals for commuter/mtb/roadie

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Pedals for commuter/mtb/roadie

Postby m@ » Fri May 02, 2008 12:29 pm

Hello all, another newbie with a dumb question... :)

I'm currently riding an unmodified ~1990 steel frame roadie as a commuter and for the occasional longer weekend ride. Overall I'm happy with the bike for now, but I think the time has come to upgrade to clipless pedals. I'm hoping to replace the bike with something a bit lighter in 12-18 months if all goes well, and would prefer to buy something decent now that will transfer well to a better roadie. But the plot thickens - I also do a tiny bit of off-road and ideally I'd like pedals I can swap onto my mtb as well.

My thoughts are that mtb pedals like Shimano M520s would work as all-rounders, but am I overlooking something? Are there any massive advantages to single-sided roadie pedals - or are there higher-end pedals that would do a better job as all-rounders?

Alternatively, am I barking up the wrong tree entirely in thinking that a single set of pedals can do duty as both mtb and road?

I really do very little off-road and don't see that changing anytime soon, and have no racing ambitions - I just want something better than sneakers and platforms, but on the other hand I don't want to buy something cheap and cheerful now, just to upgrade again in six months...

Any thoughts appreciated! Great forum, this :)
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by BNA » Fri May 02, 2008 12:35 pm

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Postby stryker84 » Fri May 02, 2008 12:35 pm

I don't yet ride clipless, but have heard/asked this question enough, that I'll venture my opinion. Correct me if you wish, anyone! ;)

2-bolt SPDs, like the M520 will do very well. Advantages of a 3-bolt wide road pedal are wider platform for perhaps better power transference, less hot spot issues etc. MTB pedals like the SPD give a smaller contact area, but allow more versatility in that you can walk around off the bike due to the recessed cleat. Nothing stops you wearing them on your roadie, except perhaps the reasons outlined above, and perhaps less blinginess.

Get a pair, if you like them, a compatible pair for the second bike will allow you to use the same cycling shoes without having the hassle of un-wrenching and refitting pedals each time.

Hope that was accurate. At least, that's the reasoning I'll be going on when I finally buy my set of pedals/shoes.
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Postby kukamunga » Fri May 02, 2008 12:38 pm

Shimano 520's can be got for as little as ~$43 + p online - buy two pairs. I use my one pair for both on and off road - must get second pair myself.....
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Re: Pedals for commuter/mtb/roadie

Postby Bnej » Fri May 02, 2008 12:47 pm

m@ wrote:Are there any massive advantages to single-sided roadie pedals - or are there higher-end pedals that would do a better job as all-rounders?


A road pedal holds your foot more securely. SPD-SL pedals vs SPD - when you're attached to the road pedal you're really attached! The pedal engages a wider area and will not pull out unless you mean to.

Initially I found SPDs sufficient for road use, and as a commuting & MTB pedal they're pretty much fine. If you like to sprint and really pull on the pedal through the back of the stroke then you might find they're not secure enough - I pulled out by mistake a couple of times - tightening up the release tension helps but in this respect going to SPD-SLs is much better.

You can use them for both, and if you decide it's not enough you can go to road pedals - but you'll probably find they suit you for quite some time.
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Postby simonn » Fri May 02, 2008 12:49 pm

FWIW...

My roadie came with SPDSL pedals (R540s), but I swapped them for M540s mainly because I use it to commute and MTB/SPD shoes are much easier to walk in for things like the supermarket on the way home, to showers at work etc.

I have M424 pedals on my MTB and was a bit worried that they might have allowed me to get away with to much, e.g. if I miss the cleat it is not a problem with them, so would struggle a bit with the M540s. However, I have had no problems whatsoever with the M540s. Just dial them all the way out and you can remove the cleats very easily, but they do not remove accidentally either - at least for me.
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Postby uMP2k » Fri May 02, 2008 12:53 pm

Take a look at some of the Crank Brothers offerings.

I use the Quattro SL road pedals but they have quite a range of pedals that would be equally at home on a road bike or MTB.
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Postby TethAdam5 » Fri May 02, 2008 1:26 pm

I use crank bros. candy pedals on my road bike with Shimano MO75 MTB shoes. They release easily and help a LOT in pedalling efficiency, but then all clipless will do the same thing.

I have contemplated putting a pair on my MTB as well - but after a fall off the bike last time down a hill (minor scuff really), I am a bit gun shy at being attached to the MTB!

Nothing bad to say about the Crank Bros yet!
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Postby Deanj » Fri May 02, 2008 7:42 pm

TethAdam5 wrote:I use crank bros. candy pedals on my road bike with Shimano MO75 MTB shoes. They release easily and help a LOT in pedalling efficiency, but then all clipless will do the same thing.

I have contemplated putting a pair on my MTB as well - but after a fall off the bike last time down a hill (minor scuff really), I am a bit gun shy at being attached to the MTB!

Nothing bad to say about the Crank Bros yet!


A good price on Crank Brothers Egg Beater pedals at the minute, just ordered myself a pair. It is a bit scary on the MTB for the first few times but definatly worth getting used to.
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Postby crhoo1 » Fri May 16, 2008 10:20 am

If you wanna MTB and commute buy MTB pedals. If not buy road pedals. You cann really MTB with road pedals.
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Postby m@ » Fri May 16, 2008 3:44 pm

Thanks for the replies :)

Guess I can't really go wrong with the M520s for the price... And if I decide to go to SPD-SLs later I can put them on the MTB.

Crank bros pedals look good but there seems to be a price premium!
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SPD pedals

Postby PiCO » Fri May 16, 2008 4:28 pm

Hi,

Just to add th the discussion.

I've been using SPDs for 20+ years and generally found them reliable.

The cleats do eventually wear out (after LOTS of kilometres) but if you hunt around you can buy them for a reasonable price.

I run the pedals on two bikes (mountain bike and old steel frame commuter) - the convenience of being able to walk is great, I also own two pairs of Shimano shoes, the older pair gave been going since 1995 with a few running repairs and almost daily use. I bought a new pair for days when the old ones get saturated or for the day they wear out.

I also have Look type pedals on a road bike - walking any distance is a pain and chews up the cleats.


Go for the SPDs but remember to have a few practices of the release mechanism to become accustomed to turning your heel - it will become second nature. The extra power you get from cleated shoes makes it all worthwhile.

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Postby nzdans » Sat May 17, 2008 12:13 am

Hi all (I think this is my 1st post here?!),

I have had plenty of sets of SPDs but about 5 years ago I switched to the Time Z-Controls on my MTB. The Time system is far more reliable and has better feel:I have never pulled out. Re the "hot spot" if you have a nice stiff sole with a bit of carbon this is difficult to detect.

I have just purchased a shiny new Cervelo RS Dura-Ace to use primarily as a work commuter and (you guessed it) I bought some Time ATAC carbons for it as I won't be racing for at least 6 months and can't be arsed with shoes I can't walk in.

1 vote for Time.

Oh, I probably should mention I worked more than half my working life in the bike trade (managing workshops) and have always seen happy Time users..
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Re: SPD pedals

Postby il padrone » Sat May 17, 2008 10:37 am

PiCO wrote:Hi,

Just to add th the discussion.

I've been using SPDs for 20+ years


Maybe 20 years... no more than that, I believe :?: I still recall my first ever sighting of SPDs on a bike in use, on the 1990 GVBR. At this time they were $250 for pedals and $250 for shoes ie. hugely expensive!! You must have been a pioneer gear freak, and wealthy at that :wink:

Agree with all other comments.

But +1 for Time. Now using Time on all bikes except for the Cecil Walker roadie - it's been recently converted from old skool cleats to SPD-SL.

Time pedals are almost as solid and positive a connection and release as the SPD-SL. Never pulled out of the Time pedals, and no sloppy feel when the cleats wear a bit, the Time cleats are always solid and firm right to the last. The cleats are a bit more subject to wear though from walking, as your shoe soles wear down.

And I bought my last Time pedals, the Time Z, here, for $100 to my door - half the price that LBS charged!!!
Last edited by il padrone on Sat May 17, 2008 11:05 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Postby Tubular Swells » Sat May 17, 2008 11:01 am

I've been using Crank Bros Candy SL's for commuting and light off road for afew years. I think they are great! I recommed not getting the chrome ones, different internals to the SL's, and don't last nearly as long.

Candy has just enough contact area, no hot spots. Comfortable and reliable.
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Postby MJF » Sat May 17, 2008 11:36 am

As a heavier rider....

M324's - bearings kept on coming loose. So bought some M520 - bearings kept on coming lose. As you can't adjust the bearing without the Shimano special tools.... I switched to Crank Bros' Egg Beaters.

The CB's have been good, but I've already rebuilt them once after ~ 100 hours, and the right pedal needs rebuilding again. They use a nylon sleeve for the inner side, and it wears a bit quickly. Rebuild kits are ~ $40, but the nylon bush can be ordered online from bearing suppliers, the roller bearing is a common part, the only tricky bit would be the seal. Before I rebuild mine again, I'm going to visit a bearing shop and see if I can get standard parts instead of buying the OEM kit.
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Postby mikeg » Sat May 17, 2008 3:26 pm

+1 Crank Brothers

Have Smarty models on the flatbar road and the old steel road bike
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Postby Hawkeye » Sat May 17, 2008 4:09 pm

MJF wrote:The CB's have been good, but I've already rebuilt them once after ~ 100 hours, and the right pedal needs rebuilding again. They use a nylon sleeve for the inner side, and it wears a bit quickly. ... Before I rebuild mine again, I'm going to visit a bearing shop and see if I can get standard parts instead of buying the OEM kit.


I was wondering about that when I saw an exploded diagram.

If I can make a suggestion, if that bush is actually nylon see if you can get one made of delrin instead. It has much better wear properties.
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Postby MJF » Sat May 17, 2008 5:46 pm

j.r.hawkins wrote:
MJF wrote:The CB's have been good, but I've already rebuilt them once after ~ 100 hours, and the right pedal needs rebuilding again. They use a nylon sleeve for the inner side, and it wears a bit quickly. ... Before I rebuild mine again, I'm going to visit a bearing shop and see if I can get standard parts instead of buying the OEM kit.


I was wondering about that when I saw an exploded diagram.

If I can make a suggestion, if that bush is actually nylon see if you can get one made of delrin instead. It has much better wear properties.


That would be a pain - they are thin walled. But - they are a standard bushing, which means you can buy the same size in a variety of materials including 'extreme load' varieties. I did track down a company which sold them online - but now that I need to rebuild again, I'll make the effort to confirm the size of the bush. It's pretty much the only part that wears out. But - so much for 300 hours between lubes!!! :evil: I didn't even get close!
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Postby PiCO » Sun May 18, 2008 9:10 pm

il padrone wrote

Maybe 20 years... no more than that, I believe Question I still recall my first ever sighting of SPDs on a bike in use, on the 1990 GVBR. At this time they were $250 for pedals and $250 for shoes ie. hugely expensive!! You must have been a pioneer gear freak, and wealthy at that


Hey il padrone,

I think I may have been a bit tired when posting :oops: – the first pair of SPDs was 1992 – I bought them from Christies, can remember how much but I remember saving for them. So that makes it 15 years...

The first pair of pedals wore out and were not repairable as the new ones are, cost all up perhaps close to $220.00 :?: at the time.

And to add to my fessing up, I did do the classic SPD tumble on one of my first try outs of the shoes. :oops: :oops: It was OK only in front of all the Sunday lunchers on Lygon street in Carlton. I did jump up very quickly .:oops: :oops: :oops:

:?: Can the Time cleats be used with other shoes.


PiCO :lol: :lol:
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Postby bigfriendlyvegan » Sun May 18, 2008 10:41 pm

M@, I have a pair of look pedals in the marketplace section which are going for essentially free (trade me something). If you can get some Look cleats, you could try them out for next to nothing. Maybe someone here has some lying around they wouldn't mind parting with.

Cheers,
David
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Postby il padrone » Sun May 18, 2008 11:02 pm

PiCO wrote:I think I may have been a bit tired when posting :oops: – the first pair of SPDs was 1992 – I bought them from Christies, can remember how much but I remember saving for them. So that makes it 15 years...

The first pair of pedals wore out and were not repairable as the new ones are, cost all up perhaps close to $220.00 :?: at the time.


Ah, the same time I bought my first SPDs. The second model came out, a lot cheaper priced. :)

PiCO wrote:And to add to my fessing up, I did do the classic SPD tumble on one of my first try outs of the shoes. :oops: :oops: It was OK only in front of all the Sunday lunchers on Lygon street in Carlton. I did jump up very quickly .:oops: :oops: :oops:


Yes, very embarassing :oops: I did the same sort of thing in about 1982 even though using cleats and straps, at Maroondah Hwy and Springvale Rd, peak hour, lots of traffic onlookers. Trying to track stand, forgot to reach down and loosen the strap. Finished up on my back like some big beetle with the bike sticking up in the air :roll: :oops:

PiCO wrote:Can the Time cleats be used with other shoes.


Sure can. Use them with any two-bolt shoes that can take SPDs.
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