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Old 02-24-09, 05:50 AM   #1
freeranger
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Who ISN'T "clipless"

With all the clipless pedal threads, was wondering who on here (besides myself) isn't using clipless. And if not, did you every try clipless? I am using what some refer to as BMX pedals on my mtn and road bike (platforms with traction pins). Yes, I did try clipless, but didn't really ever "feel good" in them. No matter how I adjusted the cleats, didn't seem to ever get a position that felt good to me. Still have the shoes, cleats and pedals in case I want to try again (and mostly because I was unable to sell them!). So, how many of us are NOT clipless converts?
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Old 02-24-09, 07:25 AM   #2
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Moi

Edit: I do use toe clips + straps.

Last edited by doctor j; 03-03-09 at 10:27 PM.
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Old 02-24-09, 07:48 AM   #3
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Me. I'm too lazy to drive, so convenience trumps everything.

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Old 02-24-09, 07:59 AM   #4
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I have the clipless and when I go on longer rides use them but for my 'exercize' rides around town and on the bike path I just pedal...I am comfortable both ways ....cept last time with clipless I was feeling it in the knees... need to do some adjusting.
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Old 02-24-09, 08:10 AM   #5
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Tried them didn't like what they did to my knees, went back to toe clips and leather straps on my road bike and trying power straps on my local rider.
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Old 02-24-09, 08:12 AM   #6
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I'm bi (clipless). Sometimes I am and sometimes I'm not. I've been known to take the clipless pedals off for vacation riding in crowded tourist towns with many unexpected dismounts. In fact, I've been know to take both types of pedals on a vacation and to change depending on the nature of the ride.

Last edited by maddmaxx; 02-24-09 at 08:48 AM. Reason: spelling or lack thereof
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Old 02-24-09, 08:22 AM   #7
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If you really ride, and I mean, really ride, especially up hills, there's just no substitute for having something that keeps your foot down on the pedal without you having to waste effort doing it yourself. If it's not a clipless pedal, then it would have to be a toe clip with straps (or something similar). Just a bare pedal is only good if pedaling at a relatively slow cadence on level ground, and even then, only if you are a flat foot pedaler. You can't really pedal toes down very well on a bare pedal.

Clipless is more convenient to use than toe clips, but they do have to be adjusted in a way that suits you. No matter what instructions you might follow, a first time clipless pedal buyer should really buy them from a reputable local shop that can be relied on to install the cleats for you.

Clipless is best seen as a refinement on toe clips, not as an entirely new concept. Even a hundred years ago, serious riders knew the benefits of having something hold their feet down on the pedals. So it's not like it's really a new thing. If you don't want to use clipless pedals for whatever reason, you still owe it to yourself to at least use toe clips rather than just a bare, unadorned pedal.
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Old 02-24-09, 08:37 AM   #8
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Variety is the spice of cycling. Clipless for the road bikes. On my singlespeed around-town commuter, I ride in "normal" shoes and platform pedals.
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Old 02-24-09, 08:40 AM   #9
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Depends on the bike. One clipless, two with toe clips.
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Old 02-24-09, 08:42 AM   #10
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That would be ME, I've never tried the clipless, I've been around too many riders that really beat themselves up, just getting the "hang" of clipping out! Mainly I'm a CHICKEN, I don't even like "full clips/w straps I only use either "metal or plastic half-clips". They keep the foot on the pedal and I don't have to "think" to get my foot out. Yes, I ride a MTB and do fall off now and then but the dirt is a little more forgiving than the pavement so I'll be the last rider using 1/2 clips one day
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Old 02-24-09, 08:52 AM   #11
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Toe clips, straps, and slotted cleats for me.....and leather shoes
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Old 02-24-09, 09:09 AM   #12
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Road bike has MTB SPDs; touring bike has dual sided pedals, SPD one side, platform the other; city bike has Pedalite pedals with mini-toeclips. (http://www.pedalite.com/default.aspx) I try to get things to suit the intended purpose.
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Old 02-24-09, 11:27 AM   #13
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Toe straps for me ... and somewhat loose, since I am mainly concerned with preventing my feet from sliding off the pedals.

Each time I lose momentum and have an emergency "withdrawal" from the straps, I think to myself: "Couldn't have done that with clipless pedals!"

One severely wrenched knee and it would all be over for me - so I'm staying with the straps.
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Old 02-24-09, 12:51 PM   #14
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I have used old school toeclips and straps on all of my bikes since 1968. I set the straps just loose enough to permit me to yank a foot out, so that I get most of the benefit without the risk of getting trapped. I have a pair of smooth-soled Lake shoes and a set of treaded Diadoras, which were presumably designed for mountain biking, but I really miss my old Avocets with the steel shank and the four parallel grooves in the rubber outersole.

Others have urged me to convert at least the Bianchi to clipless, but I do not trust myself to adapt freely and reliably between two completely release motions.
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Old 02-24-09, 12:59 PM   #15
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BMX pedals on the daily, old school toe clips on the fixed, SPD's on the MTB.

But SPD on one side and platform on the other? I'll have to try that out...
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Old 02-24-09, 01:11 PM   #16
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Five bikes, all with platform pedals. Two of them have the nice platforms with pins. One of them does have a plastic half-clip on it, but I will likely be taking that off as I can't position my feet where I want them.
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Old 02-24-09, 02:39 PM   #17
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Toe clips and loose straps here also. Reasons:

1. My clips really do keep my foot anchored to the pedal.
2. A single club Tombay fall could break something important
3. I save the $100-$300 it would cost to go clipless
4. It's nice to use normal shoes when off the bike

True, I may be missing out, but I'm happy with my current system.
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Old 02-24-09, 02:54 PM   #18
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Moi
ditto
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Old 02-24-09, 03:47 PM   #19
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I rode with clipless for over two years because 'it was the way to go' and 'it's the modern solution' and 'it does everything except kickstart your jumbo jet while still making toast for breakfast'.

I tried to ignore the suspicion that they seemed to offer no additional benefit over the toe clips and Specialized touring shoes (again with the steel shank) that I'd been using since the eighties. Tried to ignore the graunching and crunching noises everytime you tried to walk everywhere. I tiired to ignore the fact that even SPD shoes aren't particularly comfortable off the bike especially seeing my ancient Specialized shoes were pretty good apart from that stiff shank. Then the rubber sole of my SPDs wore to the point where I was walking on the cleats rather than the sole of the shoe (actually, this happened really early but it reached the point where it was really pissing me off).

Because I include my bikes in my normal life rather than just treating cycling as a specialist activity, I realised the clipless (even with SPDs) was just a bunch of compromises so I bought a pair of flat soled, BMX shoes and returned to toe clips.

I can wear the same pair of shoes all day - why should you have to carry a second pair of shoes?
There's no drop off in pedalling efficiency - when you're spinning a fixed gear bike down a hill and pulling a cadence in excess of 120, you need to be able to pedal properly and I do this regularly with this setup.

I do miss the stiffer sole ... I think. My old Specialized shoes are too small for me now (and very tatty) and the modern industry doesn't provide a real alternative because they want everyone using the same gear. Hoever, the BMX shoes I'm wearing haven't given me any problems so far, so maybe it's not a problem. Interestingly, I've read a couple of articles now from serious bike fitters that throw doubt on the 'benefits' of stiff soles (suggesting they don't actually offer any). It's also interesting that I used to have a lot of foot problems (hot spots etc) with SPDs but have had none with the return to toe clips.

I like being able to move my foot around on the pedal - having your foot locked in one place is only a benefit if it's locked in the right place and seeing no-one really knows where that is and considering you do seem to need your foot in different places for different jobs, clipless could be seen as a retrograde step from a positioning point of view. I do move my foot depending on whether I'm spinning or sprinting or climbing and I also move it for comfort and I also move it because I flamin' well feel like it.

So it's toe clips for this little back duck ... until I get all silly and buy another set of clipless shoes I suppose, none of this sort of stuff is religious, it's just fun defending your position as though it is.

Richard

Last edited by europa; 02-24-09 at 04:51 PM. Reason: the original post was written in a hurry without time to proof read it (kid late for school) - sorted ... I hope
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Old 02-24-09, 04:05 PM   #20
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Toe clips, no straps for me.
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Old 02-24-09, 04:09 PM   #21
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Speedplay drillium platforms. The only way to go. bk
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Old 02-24-09, 06:02 PM   #22
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Each time I lose momentum and have an emergency "withdrawal" from the straps, I think to myself: "Couldn't have done that with clipless pedals!"
I used toe clips with and without straps for decades, and I really do mean decades. Got clipless pedals in 1998. My experience has been that with the right clipless pedals and the right adjustment, there's probably more chance of not being able to exit fast enough with toe clips than there is with clipless pedals. My bike is a classic-type lugged steel road bike. Can't say vintage, since it was only built in 1998, but I much, much prefer the look of my old Campy quill pedals on it with the Christophe toe clips and leather straps. Sometimes I let myself be tempted to put them back on, but just one ride makes me realize that my clipless pedals are more practical even if uglier. Nostalgia and contrarianism only go so far when faced with reality. Have a look at some SPD with the multi-release cleat, and back off on the release tension. I give you my personal guarantee that you will NOT feel like you would be locked in, and you will fall over at a stop only if you're a total idiot, like the little tricycle guy on Rowan & Martin's Laugh-in.

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Old 02-24-09, 06:07 PM   #23
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Clipless on the roadies, platforms on the mountain bikes, tourer, folder, and vintage.
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Old 02-24-09, 06:16 PM   #24
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New CF Roubaix last month - first new bike in 29 years. Immediately added 29-year-old Ideale 90 leather saddle and toe clips/straps. Kinda gave a pedestrian bike some class, ya' know?
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Old 02-24-09, 07:25 PM   #25
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Quote:
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I have used old school toeclips and straps on all of my bikes since 1968. I set the straps just loose enough to permit me to yank a foot out, so that I get most of the benefit without the risk of getting trapped. I have a pair of smooth-soled Lake shoes and a set of treaded Diadoras, which were presumably designed for mountain biking, but I really miss my old Avocets with the steel shank and the four parallel grooves in the rubber outersole.

Others have urged me to convert at least the Bianchi to clipless, but I do not trust myself to adapt freely and reliably between two completely release motions.
I think this is exactly where I am -- I've used toeclips since then, too, first with sneakers and any old street shoe, then in the '80s with Adidas Col d'Izoard touring shoes which I still use. I also have some Diadora hard-slotted cleat shoes, which seem to spin better, but also raise my foot on the pedal.

I like having help to keep my foot in one place. I use toestraps just tight enough to help hold my foot still, prevent all blood flow restriction, and pull out my foot when I need to. This also allows me to tip in very easily. I can also do the Hinault "scrape my foot" thing at teh bottom of the power stroke - you don't need clipless to enable it.

Clipless might help me or might not, but walkability is something I do not want to live without.

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