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Singlespeed & Fixed Gear "I still feel that variable gears are only for people over forty-five. Isn't it better to triumph by the strength of your muscles than by the artifice of a derailer? We are getting soft...As for me, give me a fixed gear!"-- Henri Desgrange (31 January 1865 - 16 August 1940)

View Poll Results: What kind of pedals do you use with your FIXED GEAR bicycle?
ATB SPD 7 13.21%
ATB Time ATAC 5 9.43%
ATB Egg Beater 8 15.09%
ATB Other 1 1.89%
Road Generic LOOK Style 2 3.77%
Road Speedplay 0 0%
Road Other 2 3.77%
Platform 6 11.32%
Platform/SPD Combo 0 0%
Toe Clips 28 52.83%
Multiple Choice Poll. Voters: 53. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 08-10-08, 08:06 PM   #1
cooleric1234
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Definitive Pedal Thread!

I'm looking at getting a fixed gear bike for commuting for a few reasons: low maintenance, low initial cost, still fairly lightweight, good training, to name a few. The one thing that really confuses me is the pedals. I saw the thread recently on what type of pedals to get and it seems like it would be much better suited to a poll.

So, what kind of pedals do you use for your fixed gear bike?

On a personal note, if it's a clipless system, HOW do you do that? On my road bike I have to take a half revolution with the side clipped in, then coast while I clip in the other side. I wouldn't know how to clip in to any type of pedal when I have to move the cranks. Do you just put your foot on the pedal and fumble around until it gets in as you're spinning? Thus relying on the slow cadence after a start?

As you can tell, I've never ridden a fixed gear bike. I have many other questions, but I'm trying to search in the forums and online to get them answered. Speaking of which, I have some suggestions for a much more useful sticky FAQ type thread than the current one with very deep links. It'll have to be for another post.
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Old 08-10-08, 08:10 PM   #2
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woot first vote!

//edit

Toe clips for now. I plan to invest in some mtn shoes with some shimano SPDs or candy/eggbeaters in the next few months.. but til then, clips do me well
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Old 08-10-08, 08:13 PM   #3
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Originally Posted by cooleric1234 View Post
On a personal note, if it's a clipless system, HOW do you do that? On my road bike I have to take a half revolution with the side clipped in, then coast while I clip in the other side. I wouldn't know how to clip in to any type of pedal when I have to move the cranks. Do you just put your foot on the pedal and fumble around until it gets in as you're spinning? Thus relying on the slow cadence after a start?
First, I recommend clipless to all riders and especially commuters with a distance of over 15 or so miles RT. If you have a very serious job you will just have to swap shoes I guess, but as a student I wear my SIDIs all day. Since I spent the money properly and bought good shoes I can wear them around without my feet dying or my cleats wearing out.

For fixed clipless entry, first realize most riders use 2- or 4-sided entry systems. Time ATACs and the high-end Crank Bros offerings are the best. To get in I clip in with my right (dominant) foot first, pedal, and basically do an "organized fumble" for the other foot. Eventually you learn to catch the pedal as it's coming around and, with a good dual or quad sided system, it will catch with no difficulty. To unclip fixed I used to fumble around at lights but now I will take one off the roadies and unclip both feet and use my brake to do the final stop. (FWIW I find trackstanding outside urban areas more of a hassle and energy-drainer than a worthwhile technique.)
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Old 08-10-08, 08:18 PM   #4
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Need an "other". I rock with PowerGrips on my fixie. But that's because my fixie is my "ride in regular clothes" bike; I ride my gearie (heh) in SPD/SL Ultegra pedals.
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Old 08-10-08, 09:42 PM   #5
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Didn't realise my eggbeaters were "ATB" specific

I run Eggbeater SLs on my road bike and fixie, you get naturally used to where your cleat/pedal position needs to be and basically it just happens. SPDs I find slightly more thought-invoking just because of the slightly different clip-in feeling, and you have to 'aim' a tad more. With the 4-point entry of the eggbeaters I just put my foot down and it'll find itself. Riding fixed with pedal retention also allows you to not necessarily need both feet on/in the pedals, so taking off from a light still gives you the chance to put power down while trying to find your clip-in spot on the off foot. This becomes a no-brainer once you start track standing, etc. On my geared bike (gearie? ) I just wind the cranks around with the foot that's in until I get the other in, which is typically right on the next upstroke anyway - maybe I'll have to look/check myself, but usually it's just stomp->clipped->sorted.

I rarely ever unclip my right (dominant foot) - starting off I push with that foot and on a fixed, you'll learn to know where/when the other pedal is compared to your other foot that IS in, so you just kinda put your foot down and it'll clip in. I alternate trackstands with just left foot down resting, depending on how I feel.

You'll get used to riding clipless fast, and likely have a fall or two at 0mph when you realise you can't get your foot off the pedal as you may have been used to - the unclip action becomes a second nature thing very quickly, and a 0mph falldown is almost required learning - it's also really funny, just learn to laugh at yourself.
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Old 08-10-08, 09:49 PM   #6
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Need an "other". I rock with PowerGrips on my fixie. But that's because my fixie is my "ride in regular clothes" bike; I ride my gearie (heh) in SPD/SL Ultegra pedals.
I actually use PowerGrips with my hybrid bike, but there was only room for 10 options and I thought them to be less likely used on a FG bike. As others have pointed out, I'm no pedal expert. Some of my options may not be ideal, I tried to go based on what I've seen and what was in the similar thread a day or so ago.
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Old 08-10-08, 09:52 PM   #7
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You'll get used to riding clipless fast, and likely have a fall or two at 0mph when you realise you can't get your foot off the pedal as you may have been used to - the unclip action becomes a second nature thing very quickly, and a 0mph falldown is almost required learning - it's also really funny, just learn to laugh at yourself.
Thanks for the comments. I actually use SPD pedals (Shimano 520's) on my road bike, but you make a good argument for egg-beaters. My bike came with one-sided road pedals that fit the SPD shape, but I've found the two sided pedals loads better. Perhaps the egg-beaters would be even easier to get into.

I also didn't think about track stands, thus negating the need to unclip. I try to time stops and intersections now to minimize unclipping, but it's not always possible with lights.
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Old 08-10-08, 10:07 PM   #8
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Originally Posted by peabodypride View Post
(FWIW I find trackstanding outside urban areas more of a hassle and energy-drainer than a worthwhile technique.)
Maybe I'm just special, or a really good trackstander, but I trackstand to get my energy back at stoplights... it's no different than standing on the ground for me.
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Old 08-10-08, 10:35 PM   #9
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I use ATACs but where's the POWERGRIPS option?

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Old 08-10-08, 10:38 PM   #10
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^^^ see above. I asked the same question. PowerGrips FTW.
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Old 08-10-08, 10:45 PM   #11
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I use ATACs but where's the POWERGRIPS option?
As I mentioned above I ran out of room and, for some reason, didn't think many people here would be using PowerGrips. I actually use them on my hybrid. I don't know why, I just didn't think it would be a popular option.

Keep the posts coming from those who use PowerGrips, since it's not on the poll.
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Old 08-10-08, 10:46 PM   #12
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hey idiot OP.... might want to search the forums.

my poll wins

it has an Other and a Powergrips option

Last edited by Judge_Posner; 08-10-08 at 10:49 PM.
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Old 08-11-08, 12:57 AM   #13
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Do powergrips fit on most pedals? I have pedal similar to http://velo-orange.com/mkstope.html and i've been thinking about getting powergrips. Are they easier to get into than clips?
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Old 08-11-08, 06:05 AM   #14
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MKS for the win!

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