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Thread: Gone Clipless

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    Gone Clipless

    Well I put clipless pedals on my bike yesterday. Spent all day today moving my daughter into her new place. Tomorrow will be my first clipless ride. Here's hoping I don't bust my big ole butt.

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    I've often contemplated going clipless, but haven't yet.

    I'm sure you'll be fine, but if you join Club Tombay"...I understand that pics are required.

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    Grandpa with spunk Randy Bosma's Avatar
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    I just went clipless about two weeks ago. At this point I still have to work at fully engaging the brain while riding so I remember to downshift and unclip prior to the stops I can anticipate. The whole process was not a difficult as I was imagining, and there is a positive effect on acceleration and speed, However, Lance has nothing to worry about.
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    Practice over the lawn some. I drew some curious looks in doing so but...

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    Legs; OK! Lungs; not! bobthib's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by old and new View Post
    Practice over the lawn some. I drew some curious looks in doing so but...
    Good advice, me thinks...

    I went clipless and did several rides "around the block" with frequent stops, thinking about what I was doing: which foot, when, how slow can I go, etc. I was never afraid, but I did dump 2x. Once was because I ALWAYS unclip my left foot and lean left. But this one time I leaned right....

    The other time was riding up the sidewalk to the house. I unclipped left and coasted up to the left hand turn..... and leaned right. Right into the shrubs! Now I get off and walk the bike up the side walk.

    Now we've graduated to a tandem. I've thought about going clipless rather than the stock MTB platforms. Since all of my stokers are not "into" cycling, I decided to go with "Powerstrips"

    These are leather straps that go over MTB platform pedals. Unlike Clips, you can ignore these and just crush them and stomp on the pedal, with no ill effects. And, like clipless pedals, to disengage, you move your heel out. The main difference is that to engage them you have to point your foot inward at about 45deg.

    I like them because they provide all the benefits of clips, AND they are good training for exiting clipless pedals. To top it off, the can be crushed or ignored, as needed. I think they are a perfect fit for our trainer tandem.
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    Before you know it, unclipping will be as automatic as fastening your seatbelt. If I ride with regular shoes --- which is very rare, but when I do, I automatically twist my foot on the pedal as if to unclip. It's second nature now. Start with the tension set to a low or lowest setting. Since I ride a lot in traffic, I keep the tension very low so unclipping is very fast and easy, and I've never unclipped without intending to.
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    gone ride'n cyclinfool's Avatar
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    I went clipless back in the mid 90s, what I find is that when I removed my toe straps from my commuter I found my feet shooting forward off the pedals at the top of the stroke, I had to go to a non-strap toe clip, I can't ride normal pedals anymore.

    Clipless is easy - do as you are doing, be conservative in your riding for awhile until you are no longer thinking about it.
    "Of all the things I ever lost I miss my mind the most." Mark Twain
    If all you have is a hammer, every problem looks like a nail.

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    Senior Member ilmooz's Avatar
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    I'd recommend practicing clipping out with each foot when you stop. If you regularly clip out with the same foot and you start doing a tip-over the other way your lack of familiarity disengaging your opposite foot could cause you to drop.

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    Small Member maddmaxx's Avatar
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    When you are learning, be aware of the many ways that we who are members of Club Tombay have invented to gain our membership.

    1. Forgetting to unclip. This may be the most common beginner mistake

    2. Unclipping the wrong foot. Unclipping the intended foot only to find oneself leaning the other way. This is common among those of us who are expert unclippers (pride goeth before a fall)

    3. Failure to anticipate a quick or emergency unclip. Sometimes this happens around tourists or dogs or when maneuvering through tight places like gates at road crossings on trails. Sometimes it pays to unclip before you have to.

    4. Aborted starts. I often start with my right foot clipped in and my left on the ground. On occasion, just as I have placed all of my weight on the right foot to start, I have had to grab a handful of brake and stop because someone has walked in front of me or something else. The right clipped in foot is welded to the pedal at this point and if you are leaning to the right............instant Tombay membership, usually in front of witnessis.

    Enjoy the clippless.........they really are worth the time to learn...........let us know if you invent any new and interesting causes for membership application............remember, it will become automatic eventually.............really................eeeeeeeeeeeeeeee, splat.

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    Gone DnvrFox's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ilmooz View Post
    I'd recommend practicing clipping out with each foot when you stop. If you regularly clip out with the same foot and you start doing a tip-over the other way your lack of familiarity disengaging your opposite foot could cause you to drop.
    I do just the opposite - clip out of the same foot each and every time.

    Haven't had a "clipless fall" fallen in 10 years.
    Gone >> Gone >> Gone >> Gone >> Gone >> Gone >> Gone

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    Junior Member Melliman's Avatar
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    I, too, went clipless this week - going on my first extended ride today. Hey, Shimano spd users (M540) - is the cleat supposed to jiggle around in the pedal a bit? No matter how tight I adjust the pedal tension, the cleat still jiggles - is this how it's supposed to be? I was under the impression that the union was supposed to be rock solid.

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    Gone DnvrFox's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Melliman View Post
    I, too, went clipless this week - going on my first extended ride today. Hey, Shimano spd users (M540) - is the cleat supposed to jiggle around in the pedal a bit? No matter how tight I adjust the pedal tension, the cleat still jiggles - is this how it's supposed to be? I was under the impression that the union was supposed to be rock solid.

    Is the cleat firmly affixed to the shoe? Sometimes they come loose.

    Mine is solid. No jiggling, but there is side-to-side "float."
    Gone >> Gone >> Gone >> Gone >> Gone >> Gone >> Gone

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    I used Speed Play Frogs, for years on road and Mt bikes and never had a problem. If you have knee issues (I do) check these out. They have 26 degrees of float so finding a personal sweet spot is not an issue. I stopped using them for no real reason. I ordered a set of Frog cleats for some Shimano shoes I have been using w/o clips. They are stiff, comfortable and you can easily walk in them. Mine are gray if color matters.

    http://www.performancebike.com/bikes...00_20000_54005

    Unless you are a die hard roadie this combo should work well. I will post after the cleats arrive.

  14. #14
    Senior Member BigBlueToe's Avatar
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    I'm another recent clipless guy. I don't say convert because I'm still debating whether I want to remain clipless. But I haven't fallen yet.

    I had my first panic stop with them last weekend. I jammed on the brakes to avoid death, and for a split second braking was all I could think about - not rotating my foot to unclip. But as I quickly came to a stop and began the gradual process of tipping over, I remembered, thought about what to do, and unclipped. It happened fast - I was probably only 10-20 degrees away from vertical when I unclipped, but it brought home that there are going to be times when I don't have much time to think, so I'd better be well-trained.

    My previous ride had been on my non-clipless tourer, so I think my subconscious muscle-memory had been mildly corrupted. Early in each ride I need to re-burn my synapses (the ones in my brain, not the bikes from Cannondale) with the thought of how to undlip.

    P. S. What's the derivation of Club Tombay?

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    Junior Member Melliman's Avatar
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    Just returned from my first clipless ride - broke my speed record by .4 mph (which was probably due more to a good, pre-ride BM than the pedals).

    For a guy used to cleats, clips and toe straps, this seemed a lot easier to me. One think I learned: it's easier to get out of the clipless at the bottom of the stroke than the top.

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    Going clipless is easy- Just like falling off a bike.
    How long was I in the army? Five foot seven.


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    Small Member maddmaxx's Avatar
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    For Big Blue Toe. Club Tombay (tombier from the french for the fallen) is our humerous joke about the trials and tribulations of clipless pedal users. Almost all Tombay events involve a 0mph tip over that causes much more harm to the ego than the body. We appreciate observers to make the embarrasment complete. Stories are good, pics are better. Most here are members. For those who aren't..........we are waiting............

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    Today was my first clipless ride.Everything went well. My speed and climbing was better, and no falls. Yayyyyy me.

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    Gone DnvrFox's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Robin48 View Post
    Today was my first clipless ride.Everything went well. My speed and climbing was better, and no falls. Yayyyyy me.
    Good for you.

    But, the honor of joining Club Tombay is not far away.
    Gone >> Gone >> Gone >> Gone >> Gone >> Gone >> Gone

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    With the clipless shoes, I am having a burning pain in my feet. Any ideas?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Robin48 View Post
    With the clipless shoes, I am having a burning pain in my feet. Any ideas?
    Seems to be a common problem. My wife on a Tandem complained about it all the time and so did my partner on a CC Tour.
    Several ideas:
    She used the most padded insoles we could find. I think it was at Walgreens.
    He used bicycle specific socks and SIDI shoes with padded insoles. No problem after that.
    I have no problems because I use SIDI shoes, bicycle specific socks, padded insoles and high cadence cycling with very low pressure on my shoes.

  22. #22
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    Also make sure your straps are snug but not overtight; you could be compressing the arch of your foot too much or cutting off circulation. This is also a common problem with over-tightened ski boots.

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    Dharma Dog lhbernhardt's Avatar
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    Just remember that there is a "dead spot" at about 10 o'clock (viewed from the right of the bike) where it becomes extremely difficult/awkward to disengage. The best place to unclip is at 4 to 6 o'clock.

    L.

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    Senior Member gear's Avatar
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    Now whenever you fall off your bike, for whatever reason, you can blame the pedals.
    Also you can make out like switching to clipless was a big accomplishment that only a seasoned rider could pull off.


    This is how we subtly keep other riders from enjoying the benefits of clipless pedals. We scare them off.

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    Small Member maddmaxx's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by gear View Post
    Now whenever you fall off your bike, for whatever reason, you can blame the pedals.
    Also you can make out like switching to clipless was a big accomplishment that only a seasoned rider could pull off.


    This is how we subtly keep other riders from enjoying the benefits of clipless pedals. We scare them off.
    It's sort of like "hey you..........get off the lawn".

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