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  1. #1
    Senior Member Bikey Mikey's Avatar
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    Really?!? On the first day clipless on the road--tombay, LOL.

    Here I am, about 10 miles into my ride using clipless for the first time(other than on a trainer) and I slow to look carefully in order to cross an intersection(yield sign). I'm trying to unclip in case I need to stop and it's not working out and then, down I go on my right side. Very soon, a car rolls up and asks if I'm okay. I say I'm fine, just embarrassed--she chuckles and goes off. Bike's fine. I'm okay except some sore ribs and slightly tender hip--bet they'll have a nice bruise each. I can breath fine, walk fine, raise and move my right arm fine(just some tenderness on the ribs). Well, I'm in the club now--in my mind at least(not an official BF member of the club yet).

    Reenactment(pain to take a pic of yourself with the sun in the eyes and with a crappy cell phone):





    And no, this will not convince me to go back to toe clips and abandon clipless. BTW, I did a tombay with toe clips a couple of times in the past(with them loose, not tight)--toe clips are not immune to tombays.
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    My nephew's and his two friends' blog about their riding the East Coast, Maine to the Keys:
    http://brobreak.wordpress.com/

    Check out my 43.5 mi Ride on Strava: http://app.strava.com/activities/218575771

  2. #2
    Time for a change. stapfam's Avatar
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    Just waiting for the votes to come in now.

    But it is quite obvious you need more practice.

    Not in unclipping- or falling----but in the landing.

    Practice will make perfect but hopefully you won't get the situation arise for a while.
    How long was I in the army? Five foot seven.


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  3. #3
    Senior Member Bikey Mikey's Avatar
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    I think my issue is that I can unclip much easier and realiably twisting my heal inward towards the bike whereas I keep hearing that you have to unclip with heel going out away from the bike. When I had the tombay, I was trying to unclip with twisting the heel out,. I mentioned this to the LBS guy who was a racer in his youth and he stated that heel toward the bike is the only way he does it--heel out hurts his knee. Also, with the float, there is less to reach the unclipping going in--there is much more distance to reach the unclipping point going outward.
    Please support diabetics like myself, a red rider, by supporting the American Diabetes Association.
    If you see a Tour de Cure event, consider participating or supporting a Red Rider or other participant.


    My nephew's and his two friends' blog about their riding the East Coast, Maine to the Keys:
    http://brobreak.wordpress.com/

    Check out my 43.5 mi Ride on Strava: http://app.strava.com/activities/218575771

  4. #4
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    You're a good man for sharing your experience so others can learn and understand that tombe is not an exclusive club.
    Last edited by SwampDude; 05-25-13 at 04:01 PM.

  5. #5
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    I've had both hips replaced and I can't twist my heel outward. I've been twisting inward for years with no problem. You just have to be careful not to put your heel thru the spokes. I always unclip with my foot forward or at the bottom of the stroke. Practice my
    friend.

  6. #6
    Senior Member TromboneAl's Avatar
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    My Book: Drive, Ride, Repeat: The Mostly-True Account of a Cross-Country Car and Bicycle Adventure

  7. #7
    Senior Member Shp4man's Avatar
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    Reinactment. Ha! LOL.
    "Life is like a ten speed bicycle. Most of us have gears we never use." -Charles M. Schulz

  8. #8
    Senior Member GeorgePaul's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bikey Mikey View Post
    I think my issue is that I can unclip much easier and realiably twisting my heal inward towards the bike whereas I keep hearing that you have to unclip with heel going out away from the bike.
    I always unclip my SPDs with heel going outward. What kind of pedals/cleats do you have? If you're using SPDs and want to unclip with your heel going inward, you need SM-SH56 multiple release mode cleats, not the standard SM-SH51 single release mode cleats.
    Last edited by GeorgePaul; 05-25-13 at 05:03 PM.

  9. #9
    Senior Member Bikey Mikey's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by GeorgePaul View Post
    I always unclip my SPDs with heel going outward. What kind of pedals/cleats do you have? If you're using SPDs and want to unclip with your heel going inward, you need SM-SH56 multiple release mode cleats, not the standard SM-SH51 single release mode cleats.
    Hmm, the cleats have SM-SH51 imprinted on them and I seem to be able to release inward with them. I'll check with the LBS to see if they have any SM-SH56 cleats. I remember the literature for the pedals state to use only the SH51 or SH56 cleats. Although, I'm not sure how the 51s would be unidirectional as the structure is perfectly symmetrical and they do not have a L or R to indicate which shoe to attach them too. I can unclip easily when twisting in, but if the 56s would be better, I'll spend the little extra and get those. The pedals I have, as indicated further up, are the PD-M530s.

    BTW, the tension on the pedals is set to the lowest, easiest to unclip.
    Last edited by Bikey Mikey; 05-25-13 at 05:51 PM.
    Please support diabetics like myself, a red rider, by supporting the American Diabetes Association.
    If you see a Tour de Cure event, consider participating or supporting a Red Rider or other participant.


    My nephew's and his two friends' blog about their riding the East Coast, Maine to the Keys:
    http://brobreak.wordpress.com/

    Check out my 43.5 mi Ride on Strava: http://app.strava.com/activities/218575771

  10. #10
    Senior Member GeorgePaul's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bikey Mikey View Post
    Hmm, the cleats have SM-SH51 imprinted on them and I seem to be able to release inward with them. I'll check with the LBS to see if they have any SM-SH56 cleats.
    According to Shimano, SH51s are designed to release only when the heel is twisted outward -- see http://bike.shimano.com/media/techdo...9830732589.pdf. I use SH56s and they definitely release in multiple directions, including inward, and they are shaped differently from SH51s.

  11. #11
    Team Poseur Metric Man's Avatar
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    Yer a good sport BM, I love the reenactment.
    The thoughts and opinions expressed by this poster are his own and should not be misconstrued as gospel. They are and were not meant to inflame, enrage or otherwise tick anyone off, usually.
    2012 Ti Motobecane with SRAM Red 2013~2008 Trek Madone with SRAM Force~2010 Specialized Hardrock 29er~2006 Trek 4300~Garmin 800 CTR
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  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bikey Mikey View Post
    I think my issue is that I can unclip much easier and realiably twisting my heal inward towards the bike whereas I keep hearing that you have to unclip with heel going out away from the bike. When I had the tombay, I was trying to unclip with twisting the heel out,. I mentioned this to the LBS guy who was a racer in his youth and he stated that heel toward the bike is the only way he does it--heel out hurts his knee. Also, with the float, there is less to reach the unclipping going in--there is much more distance to reach the unclipping point going outward.
    On most pedals, the direction in which your heel moves shouldn't matter. If you don't know how yourself, I'd ask your shop to decrease the pedal tension for you for a while until you get used to it. Truth be told, if you're not doing tough hills, light tension's fine all around, although if you are doing hills and your tension is too loose, your cleat could unexpectedly come out of the pedal. Even in that case, your worse risk is a low-speed fall.

    Personally, I always prefer twisting away from the bike, as that avoids any possibility of coming in contact with anything on your bike. When I was renting a road bike in Florida and didn't bring my own pedals and used their SPDs, the pedal tension was too tight until I adjusted it. The only way to unclip for a bit was toward the bike and I unexpectedly broke a spoke after having difficulty twisting out. Not a huge deal, but a pain nonetheless. If that way works best for you, there's no real harm in it, just be a bit careful.

  13. #13
    Senior Member Bikey Mikey's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by GeorgePaul View Post
    According to Shimano, SH51s are designed to release only when the heel is twisted outward -- see http://bike.shimano.com/media/techdo...9830732589.pdf. I use SH56s and they definitely release in multiple directions, including inward, and they are shaped differently from SH51s.
    If you didn't think I believed you, I did. I was just relating that I could unclip rotating inward. I think I'll definitely get a set of 56 cleats and use those instead of the 51s.
    Please support diabetics like myself, a red rider, by supporting the American Diabetes Association.
    If you see a Tour de Cure event, consider participating or supporting a Red Rider or other participant.


    My nephew's and his two friends' blog about their riding the East Coast, Maine to the Keys:
    http://brobreak.wordpress.com/

    Check out my 43.5 mi Ride on Strava: http://app.strava.com/activities/218575771

  14. #14
    Senior Member GeorgePaul's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bikey Mikey View Post
    If you didn't think I believed you, I did. I was just relating that I could unclip rotating inward. I think I'll definitely get a set of 56 cleats and use those instead of the 51s.
    It's cool. I just hope you stay safe and never fall again.

  15. #15
    Senior Member Mobile 155's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bikey Mikey View Post
    Here I am, about 10 miles into my ride using clipless for the first time(other than on a trainer) and I slow to look carefully in order to cross an intersection(yield sign). I'm trying to unclip in case I need to stop and it's not working out and then, down I go on my right side. Very soon, a car rolls up and asks if I'm okay. I say I'm fine, just embarrassed--she chuckles and goes off. Bike's fine. I'm okay except some sore ribs and slightly tender hip--bet they'll have a nice bruise each. I can breath fine, walk fine, raise and move my right arm fine(just some tenderness on the ribs). Well, I'm in the club now--in my mind at least(not an official BF member of the club yet).

    Reenactment(pain to take a pic of yourself with the sun in the eyes and with a crappy cell phone):





    And no, this will not convince me to go back to toe clips and abandon clipless. BTW, I did a tombay with toe clips a couple of times in the past(with them loose, not tight)--toe clips are not immune to tombays.
    As a club member in good standing myself at first if it hadn't been a reenactment I would consider voting for you. However much like a jury trial it is hard to convict when there is reasonable doubt that all of the aspects of the crime have been committed. A group of friends or club members should have been there. In my case one was a nurse and she almost fell over laughing. There should be at least a drop of blood. Road rash will do. The fall should take place in mental slow motion and in full knowledge going down because of your own mistake.

    However if in the future you want to make an official application have someone take your picture before you get up. The Certificate is worth of framing and pretty much makes members brothers and sisters for life.
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  16. #16
    Senior Member JimF22003's Avatar
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    Yer a good sport, Mikey!

    BTW my last clip-in failure was a week ago today. Landed hard on my elbow. Ouchies!

    Pro Tip: Do not try to clip in going UPHILL if you can avoid it. If you don't make it on the first try, you get slower, and sloooower, and sloooower, and then you tip over. Does not impress the wimmen.
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  17. #17
    Senior Member Bikey Mikey's Avatar
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    The witness I had was the driver who was down the road and stopped to ask if I was okay, a woman(Women seem to be more likely than men to stop to see if you're alright in my experiences.). I thought I posted this information, but now realize it was info I posted elsewhere or in a PM. I realized as I got up and going that I forgot to take a photo and thus made a loop back to the location to take a reenactment pic. If I don't get certified, that's fine--not something that is an important goal. I value my wife, kids, friends, cycling, my improved health, and the camaraderie I have here at the BF forums. Of course, if I never make it because of no other incidents, that would be fine with me. Really, the primary reason for the post wasn't as an application, but more informational, a report.

    Now, I'll keep reading some of the other threads while wincing from my bruised ribs.
    Please support diabetics like myself, a red rider, by supporting the American Diabetes Association.
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    My nephew's and his two friends' blog about their riding the East Coast, Maine to the Keys:
    http://brobreak.wordpress.com/

    Check out my 43.5 mi Ride on Strava: http://app.strava.com/activities/218575771

  18. #18
    Senior Member
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    Mikey- Does this experience cause you to have any reservations about clipless?

  19. #19
    The Recumbent Quant cplager's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Trek51 View Post
    I've had both hips replaced and I can't twist my heel outward. I've been twisting inward for years with no problem. You just have to be careful not to put your heel thru the spokes. I always unclip with my foot forward or at the bottom of the stroke. Practice my
    friend.
    I have Nashbar Ragster SPD sandals and when I first got them, I was also usually twisting my ankle in instead of out. I was pulling up to a light and unclipping when I hear this horrible thump-thump-thump sound and my drive wheel screeches to a halt. I tore up the corner of the heel of my left sandal pretty good and scared the $h|t out of myself. I now generally twist outwards although I agree one can twist inward if paying attention (which clearly I was not).
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  20. #20
    feros ferio John E's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gnosis View Post
    Good to hear that you’re o.k. Bikey Mikey, but that’s one club whose membership I want no part thereof. Though I had been thinking about them, I’ve since decided there won’t be any clipless pedals in my future. I do absolutely fine with platform pedals.
    This ol' klutz has been using good ol' clips and straps for almost 45 years and feels no urge to learn anything different.
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  21. #21
    Senior Member John_V's Avatar
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    The cleats will get easier to unclip as they and the pedals go through the break-in period. One thing you can try to help unclip easier is to take a wire brush and brush the front and rear of the cleats (not the flat part) and also brush the area on the pedals where the cleats make contact with the pedal. BTW, the main difference between the two cleats (51 and 56) is that the 56 cleats are designed to release with an upward motion as well. I have a pair that I bought with my first set of pedals and didn't like them. Because they release with upward pressure, it was too easy for them to release when I didn't want them to. Also, I have no problems releasing either foot when turning them inward, although I usually use the outward motion to release. I think if you find a spot, during the crank stroke, where the release is the easiest, always release in that position. For me it's right foot at 12:00 and left foot at 6:00.
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  22. #22
    Senior Member GeorgePaul's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by John_V View Post
    BTW, the main difference between the two cleats (51 and 56) is that the 56 cleats are designed to release with an upward motion as well. I have a pair that I bought with my first set of pedals and didn't like them. Because they release with upward pressure, it was too easy for them to release when I didn't want them to.
    Interesting. I've been using 56 cleats for a long time now and have never had a problem with unintended unclipping. Also, I have never had a problem getting out when I wanted/needed to and have never needed to do anything to the pedals or cleats to make releasing easier.
    Last edited by GeorgePaul; 05-26-13 at 03:12 PM.

  23. #23
    Senior Member Bikey Mikey's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by SwampDude View Post
    Mikey- Does this experience cause you to have any reservations about clipless?
    No, it doesn't. If you read one of my posts you'll see I failed to come out of toe clips/cages, which were loose and not tight, and did a tombay, twice. Tombays are possible even with toe clips. The toe clips are not good for my feet--I developed a toe issue and I could tell that the cage(front) was partially a cause for the irritation. I don't just mash down--I try to extend my pedal stroke by lifting up(to release the weight of my foot and I also drag back(scrap the mud)). Also, the quill adds narrow pressure points on the balls of my feet(wearing running/walking shoes) which result in hot spots(mainly after about 70 miles. Just riding the trainer and doing 33 miles on the road with the clips, it felt like it was going to work out better for my feet. This AM I was back in the cages because I returned the shoes to have the LBS order(none in stock) the better size(42.5 rather than the 43s).

    Quote Originally Posted by John_V View Post
    The cleats will get easier to unclip as they and the pedals go through the break-in period. One thing you can try to help unclip easier is to take a wire brush and brush the front and rear of the cleats (not the flat part) and also brush the area on the pedals where the cleats make contact with the pedal. BTW, the main difference between the two cleats (51 and 56) is that the 56 cleats are designed to release with an upward motion as well. I have a pair that I bought with my first set of pedals and didn't like them. Because they release with upward pressure, it was too easy for them to release when I didn't want them to. Also, I have no problems releasing either foot when turning them inward, although I usually use the outward motion to release. I think if you find a spot, during the crank stroke, where the release is the easiest, always release in that position. For me it's right foot at 12:00 and left foot at 6:00.
    Which position are you releasing(at the 6:00 or 12:00)? I tried at the 12 but I can't get it to release and at the 6, once it releases, the left foot(I release the right) then pushes the pedal down and has the right pedal come flying around(possibility of whacking the back of my right calf). Where would I be brushing on the cleat?

    Quote Originally Posted by GeorgePaul View Post
    Interesting. I've been using 56 cleats for a long time now and have never had a problem with unintended unclipping. Also, I have never had a problem getting out when I wanted/needed to and have never needed to do anything to the pedals or cleats to make releasing easier.
    I was reading that and I'm not sure I want 56s since they can release by pulling up.



    ===========================================

    P.S. I will never try to convince anyone that the system I use is better than their system of pedal. Whatever works for you is what you should do.
    Last edited by Bikey Mikey; 05-26-13 at 03:28 PM. Reason: Adding a P.S.
    Please support diabetics like myself, a red rider, by supporting the American Diabetes Association.
    If you see a Tour de Cure event, consider participating or supporting a Red Rider or other participant.


    My nephew's and his two friends' blog about their riding the East Coast, Maine to the Keys:
    http://brobreak.wordpress.com/

    Check out my 43.5 mi Ride on Strava: http://app.strava.com/activities/218575771

  24. #24
    Senior Member John_V's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by GeorgePaul View Post
    Interesting. I've been using 56 cleats for a long time now and have never had a problem with unintended unclipping. Also, I have never had a problem getting out when I wanted/needed to and have never needed to do anything to the pedals or cleats to make them releasing easier.
    When I first got the 56 cleats, I didn't keep any tension on the pedals at all and I have this habit of stretching my feet when riding on long rides. Often this caused me to raise my heel which caused a disengagement of the pedal. This is why I no longer use the 56 cleats. Also, by brushing the face and back of the cleats and the pedals where they make contact, it gives the contact points a much smoother surface and allows for an easier disengagement. Not that it is difficult to disengage if you don't brush them, but it is a smoother release. I have also noted that after time, the nickel plating on the pedals start to wear off and the metal beneath the plating starts to pit and/or rust. I have almost 12,000 miles on these pedals and they are starting to show wear in the contact areas. Brushing them and keeping them clean and smooth aids in ease of disengaging. It may be time to get some new ones.
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  25. #25
    Senior Member TromboneAl's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by cafzali View Post
    ...decrease the pedal tension for you for a while until you get used to it.
    I did that (made it very loose) and left it that way. I've never released by accident.
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