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Old 07-09-13, 07:04 PM   #1
fixedgearinker
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clipless and gnarly stuff?

I am a roadie rediscovering fat-tires after a couple of decades of riding/racing paved stuff: I have been riding most fireroads/easy-ish singletrack/trails but have recently ventured onto some fairly technical stuff with mossy rocks, roots, loose climbs and stuff like that. I have had occasion to biff it on some climbs due in part to being clipped in. I like the idea of being clipped in for obvious reasons but would like the option of a platform to ride on without being clipped: I have been looking at crank bros mallots though I think these are intended more for DH type of riding. I am just wondering what pedals everyone is riding?
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Old 07-09-13, 08:28 PM   #2
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I use Time's Z-control. It's a clipin but when I need to I have a nice platform to ride on top... but you will get used to being clipped in on technical trails. Keep at it...BTW I am typically a cross-country rider who enjoys an occasional gnarly downhill...

http://www.bikeradar.com/gear/catego...l-pedals-32360
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Old 07-09-13, 08:40 PM   #3
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I use Time's Z-control. It's a clipin but when I need to I have a nice platform to ride on top... but you will get used to being clipped in on technical trails. Keep at it...BTW I am typically a cross-country rider who enjoys an occasional gnarly downhill...

http://www.bikeradar.com/gear/catego...l-pedals-32360
Thanks Pamestique, I like the idea of having a bit of a platform which would also come in handy in the event of riding to campus I won't need to wear my cycling shoes. I checked the link you attached, the pedals seem to be what I am looking for and the price is reasonable- I will definitely give them some consideration
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Old 07-09-13, 10:09 PM   #4
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You can easily practice speed unclipping in a safe environment, such as your yard or a park. You'll probably tip over now and then so wear your helmet and possibly knee & elbow pads. Definitely leave your ego at home. Really good practice would be to trackstand or do some ultra-slow maneuevering and then unclip when you need to put a foot down. You will get fast at it and you will gain balance which you'll need for slow sections on trails.

However it is naive to think that you'd ever be exactly as fast at unclipping as simply putting your foot down from a platform pedal. It just isn't true. But can you be fast enough? Sure.

What I have found when riding downhill while clipped in is that not only do you have to get out fast, you need to get back in very fast as well, so that you don't fly off the pedal and so that you can be ready for the next transition. Left corner to right, right to jump, jump to left corner, corner to rock garden. Obviously if you're very skilled on your bike and you know the traction limits of it, the terrain, and your tires, then you do all that clipped in and look sweet doing it. Normal people who aren't being paid to ride probably need to unclip and hover a foot, or actually put it down somewhere in that mix.

This applies to any sort of going fast, not just gravity. It takes a lot of practice and skill to ride at the limit and not dump it now and then. Being clipped in just adds another layer of difficulty, but with practice, it's not impossible.

But it also applies to going slow when you might need to put a foot down due to slipping on a rock, wet root, and so on.
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Old 07-10-13, 06:54 AM   #5
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You can easily practice speed unclipping in a safe environment, such as your yard or a park. You'll probably tip over now and then so wear your helmet and possibly knee & elbow pads. Definitely leave your ego at home. Really good practice would be to trackstand or do some ultra-slow maneuevering and then unclip when you need to put a foot down. You will get fast at it and you will gain balance which you'll need for slow sections on trails.

However it is naive to think that you'd ever be exactly as fast at unclipping as simply putting your foot down from a platform pedal. It just isn't true. But can you be fast enough? Sure.

What I have found when riding downhill while clipped in is that not only do you have to get out fast, you need to get back in very fast as well, so that you don't fly off the pedal and so that you can be ready for the next transition. Left corner to right, right to jump, jump to left corner, corner to rock garden. Obviously if you're very skilled on your bike and you know the traction limits of it, the terrain, and your tires, then you do all that clipped in and look sweet doing it. Normal people who aren't being paid to ride probably need to unclip and hover a foot, or actually put it down somewhere in that mix.

This applies to any sort of going fast, not just gravity. It takes a lot of practice and skill to ride at the limit and not dump it now and then. Being clipped in just adds another layer of difficulty, but with practice, it's not impossible.

But it also applies to going slow when you might need to put a foot down due to slipping on a rock, wet root, and so on.
Thanks for the advice and tips, all great ideas which I will be sure to do! I remember learning to ride clipless road pedals- way back when clipless first came out in the late 80's- and the learning curve was quick. I am sure the same is true for this. I think I still like the option of having a platform to settle onto either from choice or necessity when the going gets tight or for taking a commute to school
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Old 07-10-13, 07:08 AM   #6
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I don't like single-sided pedals because they are problematic for clipping into quickly on the trail.

You could instead use a large platform clipless pedal like a Crank Brothers Mallet, which has enough meat to ride with regular shoes for a short, casual outing.
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Old 07-10-13, 07:08 AM   #7
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crank 50/50 3. I like them. I wouldn't mind them being a little lower profile though.
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Old 07-10-13, 10:58 AM   #8
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Odessey Oreos. Basic $40. pair. I am hoping for a pair of Canfields for Christmas

http://canfieldbrothers.com/components/pedals

I like clipless on my road bike, never again on the fat tire bike.
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Old 07-10-13, 12:45 PM   #9
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I don't like single-sided pedals because they are problematic for clipping into quickly on the trail.

You could instead use a large platform clipless pedal like a Crank Brothers Mallet, which has enough meat to ride with regular shoes for a short, casual outing.
Those pedals are good too - there are very comparable to the Time pedals (which are also two sided).

Riding clipped in or not down steep - there are advantages to each...I have found not being clipped in can be as dangerous especially if the trail is bumpy enough to cause your foot to slip off the pedal. Trust me, that's scary too... we call it "supermanning" hands on handlebar but feet flying off the back. 9 times out of 10 I feel more secure being clipped in. If I am going down, being clipped in is generally the least of my worries.
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Old 07-10-13, 12:46 PM   #10
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http://canfieldbrothers.com/components/pedals

I like clipless on my road bike, never again on the fat tire bike.
Those are the pedals i want

and ditto on road clipless and not MTB clipless.
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Old 07-10-13, 12:50 PM   #11
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schweeeeeet! Post a picture if you get them, a truly well done pedal 100%.
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Old 07-10-13, 02:43 PM   #12
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I like clipless on my road bike, never again on the fat tire bike.
+1. Just too many opportunities to fall and hurt yourself - heck I do a pretty good job of that even with platforms. Having said that, some of the best mtn bike riders I know do use clipless.
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Old 07-10-13, 02:53 PM   #13
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It is about likes and what you trust. I like solo rides as far back as I can get. I need to minimize risk as I can tumble at the weirdest times.
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Old 07-10-13, 03:36 PM   #14
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. . . some of the best mtn bike riders I know do use clipless.
Conversely, some of the best ones I know of do not.
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Old 07-10-13, 03:45 PM   #15
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Conversely, some of the best ones I know of do not.
I'm in neither category.

However, since I do ride clipless, I wonder how I would pull off a whip without accidentally unclipping one of my feet. It's purely a mental pursuit, because I need to focus on jumping properly in a straight line.
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Old 07-11-13, 01:53 AM   #16
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A mix of Shimano M540 and XT pedals here.

I've had some variations on "platform clipless" in the past, and IMO, they don't really offer much. There isn't much stability on the platforms if you aren't really clipped in. Any time on them around town in regular shoes always had me wishing I'd either worn actual riding shoes, or that I was on my townie with flat pedals anyhow. The flat-cliples pedals offer a chance to not be fully commited to a move, with one of your feet not well connected to the bike. Trying to do something half-assedly clipped in, IMO, usually ends painfully. Suck as the times when you accidentally clip out when you would least want it to happen.

It's all in what ou get comfortable with and used to. Flats or clipless, there is a learning curve that will probably result in some bruises, cuts, scrapes either way.

YMMV.

Flats vs. clipless is a whole 'nother "argument" that has been done to death. Try 'em both if interested, stick with what you feels works for you. I ride all sorts of ugly terrain, with jumps, drops, log rides, skinnies, rock spines, tight twisty slow speed tech and trialsy stuff - all in clipless. I know plenty of my fellow local riders are doing the same. I also know plenty who do the same on flats. *shrug*
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Old 07-11-13, 06:21 PM   #17
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If you ride Shimano SPD, you owe it to yourself to check out the multi-release cleats:

Shimano SM-SH56 SPD Cleat Set

I'm using those with the "Shimano XT PD-M785 Mountain Pedals" and I've not had any occasion where I could not clip out quickly.
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Old 07-12-13, 05:31 AM   #18
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I use Shimano M324: cleats on one side and platform in the other.. I use SPD side 90% of the time though.
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