Pedals and shoes

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Pedals and shoes

Postby bigbuzz73 » Mon May 21, 2007 7:06 pm

Hi guys,
When I bought my Bianchi roadie 3 months ago I purchased a pair of Shimano PD-A520 pedals as they suit the cleats on my MTB shoes. they are ok but now I've caught the bug I've decided to buy some road shoes and pedals and would appreciate some feedback.
I've done a bit of research on the 'net and like the concept of the "Lollypop" Speedplays. Any of you have any experience with these pedals? I've heard the cleats give a bit of trouble if they get any dirt in them.
Look seem very popular, but being French I wouldn't purchase them (Never have forgiven the Frogs for the Rainbow Warrior/ Muaroa business... not buying French products is my little protest).
Having an Italian bike (and being a tosser!!! :roll: ) I like the idea of Campag. gear. but I guess they would be really expensive.
My second question relates to shoes.. is a carbon sole a 'must have'? I'm very happy with my Specialized MTB shoes so I'm a bit biased towards the brand. Any suggestions on good shoes around the $200 mark?
Any help/advice on what's good is appreciated.
Regards,
Wayne
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by BNA » Mon May 21, 2007 9:26 pm

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Postby europa » Mon May 21, 2007 9:26 pm

Why change at all? The SPDs work well for me ... and I've got multi-directional release cleats set on a loose setting. I get NO accidental releases, can walk in the shoes, can and do drive in the shoes. Unless you are doing a Robbie McKewan, do you need the bloody annoying, hopelessly impractical but very firm cleating system of road racing clips? It's your choice, but this is one area where you need to consider practicality over bling. My son has SPD-L pedals and cleats ... but they're in the box because he needs to be able to walk after riding. If all you do is ride your bike for 'training', they have their place, but otherwise, I'm not sure they offer anything.

Richard
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Postby bigbuzz73 » Mon May 21, 2007 10:34 pm

europa wrote:Why change at all?

Richard


Hi Richard,
I agree with the practical side of the SPDs, such as being able to walk comfortably, etc. That is the reason I bought the 520s with my bike.
I now find that I only ride my roadie when I go out for a ride.... When I go to the shopping centre or when just running some errands I use "Chuck Norris" (my MTB).
Although I haven't worn 'road' shoes, I assume the advantages in pedalling efficiency and comfort they offer over SPDs must outweigh the disadvantages or everyone would wear the SPDs.
regards,
Wayne
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Postby europa » Mon May 21, 2007 11:07 pm

bigbuzz73 wrote:Although I haven't worn 'road' shoes, I assume the advantages in pedalling efficiency and comfort they offer over SPDs must outweigh the disadvantages or everyone would wear the SPDs.
regards,
Wayne


Well, I'm more than happy with the comfort of my shoes and clips and efficiency? Unless you are really doing the super sprint for line honours, I don't know that you're going to gain much. They are popular because they are the racing standard, and small efficiencies count in racing. But if you aren't racing ...

Everyone's riding habits are different, but I often ride to a place, and after hanging around for a bit, ride on. For example, on the weekends my son is with his mother, I ride down to watch him play soccer, then continue on with my ride - near enough to two hours hanging around with shoes I can't walk in would be murder. Similarly, when he's at training on a wednesday night, I drive him to training, then go for a ride. Sure, I could change my shoes at the car before riding on, but with the SPDs I don't have to. I ride off to visit friends, always wearing my pukka cycling clobber, and can wander through their homes, relax with a coffee or two, without fussing about my shoes. Considering I am not pulling out of my SPDs accidentally, I can not see how there would be any huge improvement for me by going to the racing shoe. Yes, some people aexperience hot spots with them, but the right socks and not lacing them tight, both of which you have to do with the SPD-Ls anyway, solve those problems.

Still, that's just my view on life - you may find you need the extra sized cleat, but if you don't ...

Richard
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Postby moosterbounce » Mon May 21, 2007 11:07 pm

I don't have any experience with SPD pedals I'm afraid (I ride Time pedals), but have recently bought new shoes.

I had a fairly basic pair of Diadora road shoes and wanted to upgrade - the Diadoras have a hard plastic base and I find they can be slippy, so my new ones needed to have a heel and toe pad to alleviate this issue.

I tried on quite a few different brands and found the Specialized ones to be quite narrow - I was wearing a 41 in Diadora and could barely get the same size in the Spesh on!! I ended up with DMTs - they fitted beautifully.

My advice (and much of it given to me by others):
1. Try on many different brands as road shoes are a "closer" fit than mtb ones. As you have a brand allegiance, try these first. There is a different fit to road sheoes, so don't get upset if another brand feels better.
2. Road shoes are meant to have a stiff sole to transfer power to the pedal. Carbon gives you the stiffest sole around...but they can be too stiff for some!! Mine are carbon reinforced so not quite as stiff as full carbon, but more than my other ones (and cheaper than full carbon). Those who don't like the super stiff sole will get sore/tired feet from this on a long ride. Others prefer it.
3. The ratchet closure of some shoes gives you very good adjustment, but can be in slightly the wrong place for some. Mine have 2 fixtures for the closure so I can play a bit.
4. A good way to adjust them is to scrunch your toes up in the shoe and then do them up. Scrunching your toes will lift your foot slightly which allows you to then fasten the straps - this will give you some movement for "normal" riding which should be comfortable. Of course, if you are doing sprints, do them up as tight as possible!!
5. Buy shoes that feel like slippers. You shouldn't know you are wearing them. The more expensive ones may not suit you.

Apparently, your shoes don't need to match your bike, but people will laugh at you if they don't :D OK...that is the only thing I don't like about my shoes...but I'm pro bling :wink:

Hope this helps.

Moo...
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Postby europa » Mon May 21, 2007 11:09 pm

Why does it come as no surprise the Moo talked at length about the carbon fibre :roll:

Richard :D
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Postby moosterbounce » Mon May 21, 2007 11:14 pm

:D

Maybe it is a girl thing? I'm not a normal girl...hate shopping unless it is for sporting equipment!!

I'm not all "pro carbon" though (and Buzz did ask about the carbon sole so I wasn't out of line this time :wink: )...I haven't upgraded my kayak paddle to a carbon one...yet :P

Moo...
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Postby europa » Mon May 21, 2007 11:17 pm

moosterbounce wrote::D

Maybe it is a girl thing? I'm not a normal girl...hate shopping unless it is for sporting equipment!!


It's just your thing Moo. Kev's eccentric. I'm left of eccentric. Tuco rides a pink bike. 521db is still trying to work out why modern fixies have so many gears and Mike only sleeps at traffic lights :D

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Postby sogood » Tue May 22, 2007 7:54 am

Hey Bigbuzz73, sounded just like how I got back to cycling through a Bianchi roadie and SPDs some 9 months back. It's great isn't it (cycling that is)?

My solution was to dump SPDs and go for Crank Brothers' Quattro (thanks to Mikebytes for suggesting CBs). All CB pedals use the same engagement system and permit the use of MTB shoes on them. Their Quattro model (4 price levels within) is their roadie specific model and has a surrounding platform. As I value my ability to walk off the bike and that I don't want to get another road specific shoes, this is a great solution and I would suggest that you look into it. CB's engagement system is very very easy to use and won't pull out in a really hard sprint like what may happen on a SPD (many forum reports). Of course, SpeedPlay is a solid option as well.

As for shoes, I'd say go for the fit. On this point Sidi seemed to have very very few owners who complain.
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Postby MichaelB » Tue May 22, 2007 9:05 am

Sogood - are the CB Pedal clearts a 2 bolt pattern like the SPD's ?

What is so much better about the CB Quattro pedals ?

Bigbuzz73 - I also have the A520's and have no problems with them at all, and to start with only bought some cheapie shoes ($40) as my first foray into cleated shoes.

I am looking to upgrade the shoes so that I can walk in them if need be, but have no problems with retaining the SPD cleats.

Guess it depends on the size of the wallet :cry:
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Postby sogood » Tue May 22, 2007 9:43 am

MichaelB: The standard CB cleat is 2 bolts but they have a 3 hole adaptor that comes with the Quattro if you have 3 holed road shoes. I have a pair of MTB shoes with two holes and the rubber tread rides on Quattro's platform. The cleating in and out action is smoother than SPD in my experience but by design, it can't pull out in a hard sprint (within practial limits). The only issue with using MTB shoes and Quattro is the possibility that you may need to shave a small bit of shoe tread (shoe model dependent) as the inner bearing housing is a little large. It's a minor Stanley knife job and has no other impact.
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Postby europa » Tue May 22, 2007 10:30 am

Good to know there's an alternative, especially one that works for the sprinters.

Richard
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Postby MJF » Tue May 22, 2007 2:22 pm

I have the SPD-SL's... a lot more float than the SPD's, and much nicer to unclip.

Edit : That should be CB-SL's, as in Egg Beater's. It's been a long week...
Last edited by MJF on Tue May 22, 2007 9:54 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Postby mikesbytes » Tue May 22, 2007 5:49 pm

Michael, if your shoes are multi fit, then defintenly go for a 3 hole cleat over the 2 hole cleat. It spreads the load better over the shoe.

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Postby MJF » Tue May 22, 2007 6:06 pm

mikesbytes wrote:Michael, if your shoes are multi fit, then defintenly go for a 3 hole cleat over the 2 hole cleat. It spreads the load better over the shoe.


I'd say that it is likely that most three-bolt cleats have a larger surface area than two-bolt cleats, but 'spreading the load' is not a function of the number of bolts.
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Postby mikesbytes » Tue May 22, 2007 8:27 pm

MJF wrote:
mikesbytes wrote:Michael, if your shoes are multi fit, then defintenly go for a 3 hole cleat over the 2 hole cleat. It spreads the load better over the shoe.


I'd say that it is likely that most three-bolt cleats have a larger surface area than two-bolt cleats, but 'spreading the load' is not a function of the number of bolts.


I went from 2 hole spd to 3 hole look on the same shoes and the difference was noticable.

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Postby Funkymonk » Tue May 22, 2007 8:39 pm

I have a set of Shimano SPD's for sale if your interested PM me ... going cheap :wink:
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Postby MJF » Tue May 22, 2007 10:12 pm

mikesbytes wrote:I went from 2 hole spd to 3 hole look on the same shoes and the difference was noticable.


Same sized cleats? It's mainly the surface area of the nut plate and cleats which transfers the load, not the bolts. The bolts only come into play on the upwards stroke. Pretty much all of the three-bolt cleats are quite large, so don't concentrate the force in the middle of the shoe... (Apologies - I'm one of those pedantic git's).
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Postby McPete » Sat May 26, 2007 10:31 pm

Sorry for the bump, but this thread seemed the most appropriate to raise my questions in...

After a bit of frustration with toeclips dragging along the ground, having to turn the pedal over e.t.c today, I've been giving some serious thought to going to clipless pedals. However, due to my nubishness, I'm rather oblivious to the acronyms. I'll just say what I think I know, based on what I've seen, read and heard, and where I think I might start.

I ride a road bike of quite a vintage, with no real performance credentials, never mind the mug of a rider. I ride quite casually, to school, the odd weekend blast(read: Struggle) up and down the coast.
<uncertain rambling>
Hence, Road shoes seem both overkill and quite impractical for what I use my bike for.
MBT shoes however seem ideal, giving the convenience of walking, as well as the supposedly markedly noticeable improvement in putting down the limited power I have on hand. After a rather short time, I arrive at a possiblity.

Being a student, you can probably guess I'm as close as makes no difference to broke. So, I go a relatively cheap way. A set of pedals quickly grabbed my attention, the Crank Bros. Eggbeaters, for being a beauiful, simple bit of design, and a small added security feature... who could ride on a platform that small without cleats? Then shoes... The message I get from discussion here is that if it fits properly, it's good.
The Shimano MT40s, MT31s and M075s strike me as being the "economy" end of the market.
</uncertain rambling>

What think folks?
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Postby mikesbytes » Sat May 26, 2007 11:50 pm

Since you mentioned that you are a destitute student, I thought I'd mention that Torpedo7 have some quite good shoes on sale at the moment.

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Postby sogood » Sun May 27, 2007 12:07 am

Load response has a lot to do with the shoe design. So called "hotspot" relates more to the shoe than the type of pedal. Of course, a less shoe may benefit from a wider platform.
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