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  1. #1
    Senior Member iamtim's Avatar
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    Who has ridden both SPD and SPD-SL?

    I have Ultegra SPD-SL pedals and I love them. My son uses some Shimano SPD pedals (M505s, I think) and he has trouble clipping in his unclipped foot when we take off at a stop. I have a set of SPD-SL pedals I can put on his bike (which would require a cleat change) but I am loathe to do it if it won't help much.

    What sayest thou? Be SPD-SL easier to clip in to than SPD?

  2. #2
    Body by Guinness cjbruin's Avatar
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    Mrs. Bruin had trouble with the SPDs when we rented a bike for her in Hawaii. I think my SLs are very easy to use.
    Fredo, you're my older brother and I love you...but don't ever take sides, with anyone, against the family again...ever.

  3. #3
    ... Brandy's Avatar
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    I use spd's when I take Spinning classes and I HATE THEM! I have trouble clipping in on a stationary bike, I can't imagine trying to do it on my road bike. I like my SPD-SL's that I have on my road shoes much better and other than a couple of newbie falls, they've been very easy to clip in and out of.

  4. #4
    no more nellie
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    Quote Originally Posted by iamtim
    What sayest thou? Be SPD-SL easier to clip in to than SPD?
    I agree with Brandy, Tim, SPDs were tougher for me to use as well (and I started with those in Spin classes before moving to road). I could never get the pedals loose yet tight enough (does that make sense?). I kept falling over trying to unclip (of course, part of that was my being a newbie at the time). Now I use Looks and I love them, but it's just my personal preference.

  5. #5
    It is fantastic. voltman's Avatar
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    I've used both outdoors. It was harder for me to find the pedal interface on the SPDs. Step. Nope. Step. Nope. Step. Nope. With the SLs, even if I miss the first time, I can generally feel where the pedal is and slide my food accordingly.

  6. #6
    Senior Member iamtim's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by merider1
    Now I use Looks and I love them, but it's just my personal preference.
    I've never ridden Looks, but they seem at first glance to be much more SPD-SL like than SPD.

  7. #7
    no more nellie
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    Quote Originally Posted by voltman
    I've used both outdoors. It was harder for me to find the pedal interface on the SPDs. Step. Nope. Step. Nope. Step. Nope. With the SLs, even if I miss the first time, I can generally feel where the pedal is and slide my food accordingly.
    Funny, I'm having trouble with that NOW (go figure). For some reason recently I'm not able to clip in on my first try with the right pedal. I've tightened the cleat and base, so perhaps it's just me, but I feel like such a dork taking off and missing on my first try.

  8. #8
    ... Brandy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by iamtim
    I've never ridden Looks, but they seem at first glance to be much more SPD-SL like than SPD.
    They're very similar and clipping and unclipping seems to be the same.

  9. #9
    no more nellie
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    Quote Originally Posted by iamtim
    I've never ridden Looks, but they seem at first glance to be much more SPD-SL like than SPD.
    Yes, only the pedal base is larger (at least with the ones I have that are not top of the line) which for some reason I just prefer. Some cyclists will, of course, scoff at that since they want super light components everywhere (I had a guy take my tube ring off the other day claiming it adds weight...I just laughed at him! )

  10. #10
    hello roadfix's Avatar
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    I've used SPD's (spuds) in the past. Are the SL's road specific or can the cleats mount on mtb shoes as well? Just asking....
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  11. #11
    It is fantastic. voltman's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by The Fixer
    I've used SPD's (spuds) in the past. Are the SL's road specific or can the cleats mount on mtb shoes as well? Just asking....
    Road specific. They have a different mounting pattern and all the MTB shoes I've seen have lugs where the cleat would sit anyway.

  12. #12
    . Luwin1026's Avatar
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    You might want to try a set of Crank Brothers Candy's or Eggbeaters - if he already has a pair of SPD-compatible shoes, then you wouldn't have a problem with it working with those cleats. As this is my first clipless experience, I preferred something that was 4-sided and easy to clip in/out, and haven't had any complaints about them. When I get better/faster/more OCP, then maybe I'll consider switching to a road-specific setup. In the meantime, the ease of walking is another plus

  13. #13
    Embracing the fredness herbm's Avatar
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    I have SPD on my mtb/hybrid and originally on my road bike....changed the road bike to Speedplay X2...
    honestly...clipping and unclipping was really not a whole lot differnet..what was really different was the float!

  14. #14
    Meow! my58vw's Avatar
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    SPD-SLs are easier to find and eventually clip in, I have had no problems with SPDs though.
    Just your average club rider... :)

  15. #15
    Senior Member iamtim's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Luwin1026
    You might want to try a set of Crank Brothers Candy's or Eggbeaters
    The only reason I'm contemplating the switch for him is that I have a set of the black, 105-level Shimano SPD-SL pedals sitting around doing nothing that I could install for the cost of new cleats alone.

    It all comes down to whether or not the problems he's having are HIS problems or if other people encountered the same thing, which is what I'm seeing in this thread.

    Nothing against Crank Bro's or Eggbeaters, but already-paid-for pedals are better than need-to-buy pedals.

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