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Drilling hole through cycling shoe ?

Old 02-08-16, 05:17 AM
  #1  
itzwill
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Drilling hole through cycling shoe ?

First of all I wanted to say is that I have very wide feet and finding shoes for me can be a very very fought challenge, 99.90% of the shoes out in the market don't fit my feet very well except for "Crocks", since my right foot is bigger than my left and my smallest 5th right toe always point's outright wards causing it to have discomforts and swell.

My first pair of shoes were really basic Shimano XC30 and I had to wear a size 43 which is 1 - 2 sizes big than what I normally wear just to accommodate the right foot. After a while I got really annoyed of the low quality shoe and decided to purchase a pair of Northwave Extreme Tech MTB shoe for $270 since it fit me the best. How ever I can't move the cleat further back as it's so close to the front as I'm trying to get the ball of my foot to align with the axle.

While comparing my old shoe and my new shoe the cleat position is approx 5mm to 10mm in difference, this got me thinking is it appropriate to drill some holes in the carbon sole shoe ?

The shoe fits me but the cleat position doesn't thus making it unusable.

I did not think of this as I got to carried away at the bike shop, but at the same time I can't return it back.

Any ideas guys ?

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Old 02-08-16, 05:49 AM
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Do you want to extend the slot or drill 2 new holes at the final position ?
It would be helpful to see under the cleat.
Perhaps 2 holes can be drilled, the sole liner removed, and new nuts inserted from inside the shoe ? You won't get any adjustability though.
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Old 02-08-16, 06:01 AM
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Originally Posted by Homebrew01 View Post
Do you want to extend the slot or drill 2 new holes at the final position ?
It would be helpful to see under the cleat.
Perhaps 2 holes can be drilled, the sole liner removed, and new nuts inserted from inside the shoe ? You won't get any adjustability though.
I will most likely extend the slots, I'm just cautious because it's carbon :S

Drilling new holes would kind of be a pain.

Heres the shoe with out the cleat.

Where the black line is, that's where my cleats should be sitting at.




It will look similar to this

mtb_shoes_mod1.jpg
mtb_shoes_mod2.jpg
mtb_shoes_mod3.jpg
mtb_shoes_mod4.jpg
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Old 02-08-16, 06:49 AM
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Extending the slot doesn't seem too difficult ... worth a try. At some point the interior of the slot will stop, so no matter how far you extend it, the cleat nuts will not be able to slide further, but maybe there's enough space for what you need.

Maybe drill a hole at the line, possibly a second hole in between, then use a sharp blade like a box cutter to cut away the plastic between the new holes & existing slot.

I have completely different Northwave winter shoes, and notice their cleat adjustment doesn't allow me to move the cleats much more towards the arch.
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Old 02-08-16, 06:54 AM
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There is a recess on the inside of the sole for the nut plate so that it sits level with the sole inside the shoe. It may not allow the plate to be slid rearward beyond what's already available with the existing slots. You may need to extend that recess with a dremel, perhaps use t-nuts instead of the plate, or something.
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Old 02-08-16, 09:54 AM
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No guarantees it won't effect the strength of the sole but I would do it if I was in your situation as I think it's probably safe and the shoes aren't worth much to you since you can't get the cleat position right as they are. I would just extend the slot but would want to be very precise about getting the same width of the groove and making it perfectly straight. I'm worried that if the groove is even slightly too wide any bolt anchor could eventually pull through the sole. All just speculation of course but experience is my guide.
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Old 02-08-16, 10:02 AM
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File the slots (chainsaw file works excellent here) & grind/shape the plate to fit its recess.
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Old 02-08-16, 10:08 AM
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Be sure to wear a dust filter mask while filing or grinding CF. It's not good for your lungs.
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Old 02-08-16, 10:15 AM
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Originally Posted by dprayvd View Post
File the slots (chainsaw file works excellent here) & grind/shape the plate to fit its recess.
That sounds right. Work on the shoe and the plate, if needed.
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Old 02-08-16, 10:41 AM
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A wood working, steel T nut can be re threaded 5x.8 metric to use the bolts that come with the cleat.

Its a round hole .


use some more Carbon Fiber to fill the old one in..

probably add some on the inside to make up for removing the original shimano nut plate..

what you add will stick up because the new place wont have the recess ..

hope your new Insole hides its feel.. .

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Old 02-08-16, 10:53 AM
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How does it feel to use the shoes the way that they are now?

If you can't tell the difference, I'd leave well enough alone.

If they bother you, then you have nothing to lose. Drill those puppies. Life is too short to put up with such a petty aggravation every time that you ride your bike.
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Old 02-08-16, 04:33 PM
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OMG, could you guys make this any more complicated?

Lift the insoles and you will see a cut-out that willl allow you to access the nut plate.

Remove the nut plate.

Use a round file to lengthen the slots as needed.

Don't breathe the dust.

Replace the nut plate and insole and install the cleat.
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Old 02-08-16, 06:07 PM
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I could not remove the nut plate as the cut out was super glued shut, but I got my old man to use some of his tools to slowly file and drill out the bottom.
Here are the pics. I don't think the material is carbon, seems more like hard plastic with a bit of nylon coating, but I might be wrong.

Went for a quick spin, much better improvement, but will follow this up with my bike fitter in next fort nights time. It took me 30 minutes to try and accurately determine where the cleat should be at since I don't have a round bulge in my foot, had to make a educational guess and feel on the pedals.

But thanks for all the replies from the forum.

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Old 02-08-16, 06:19 PM
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Originally Posted by itzwill View Post
First of all I wanted to say is that I have very wide feet and finding shoes for me can be a very very fought challenge, 99.90% of the shoes out in the market don't fit my feet very well except for "Crocks", since my right foot is bigger than my left and my smallest 5th right toe always point's outright wards causing it to have discomforts and swell.

My first pair of shoes were really basic Shimano XC30 and I had to wear a size 43 which is 1 - 2 sizes big than what I normally wear just to accommodate the right foot. After a while I got really annoyed of the low quality shoe and decided to purchase a pair of Northwave Extreme Tech MTB shoe for $270
Me too. That's why I gave up on clipless and just went to pinned platforms, and whatever old sneakers I have laying around. My bike shoes for the past months have been the crappiest running shoes you've ever seen, with the inside heel hacked off with a boxcutter so my duckfeet don't hit the cranks or chainstay.
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Old 02-08-16, 08:59 PM
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Me too, but I also hate hot sweaty (and resulting in stinky feet) so I just ditched the shoes all together. Now cool dry happy feet! Cheaper too!
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Old 02-08-16, 09:39 PM
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I will give these shoes ago for 1 year, if any discomforts my next shoe will be the Bonts, should of done research before my purchase.
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Old 02-09-16, 10:15 AM
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Originally Posted by itzwill View Post
I got my old man to use some of his tools to slowly file and drill out the bottom.
Compliments to your "old man" for doing an excellent job on extending the slots. Very nice work.
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Old 02-09-16, 10:37 AM
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Originally Posted by itzwill View Post
I could not remove the nut plate as the cut out was super glued shut, but I got my old man to use some of his tools to slowly file and drill out the bottom.
Here are the pics. I don't think the material is carbon, seems more like hard plastic with a bit of nylon coating, but I might be wrong.

Went for a quick spin, much better improvement, but will follow this up with my bike fitter in next fort nights time. It took me 30 minutes to try and accurately determine where the cleat should be at since I don't have a round bulge in my foot, had to make a educational guess and feel on the pedals.

But thanks for all the replies from the forum.

Nicely done.

BTW, have you noticed my signature line?

It's from the movie Silverado. There's another line I love, by Linda Hunt; "If the world doesn't suit you, change it!"

That's why we have tools...
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Old 02-09-16, 10:55 AM
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Question: what are the screws at the toe for? Is that front toe-plate somehow a replaceable wear item?
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Old 02-09-16, 11:12 AM
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Originally Posted by RubeRad View Post
Question: what are the screws at the toe for? Is that front toe-plate somehow a replaceable wear item?
For optional toe spikes- better traction during cyclocross race.
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Old 02-09-16, 12:05 PM
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Interesting, I never heard of that before.
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Old 02-09-16, 12:21 PM
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Originally Posted by woodcraft View Post
For optional toe spikes- better traction during cyclocross race.
Originally Posted by RubeRad View Post
Interesting, I never heard of that before.
Not just for cyclocross races, useful for any kind of climbing...
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Old 02-09-16, 04:18 PM
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Originally Posted by rmfnla View Post
Nicely done.

BTW, have you noticed my signature line?

It's from the movie Silverado. There's another line I love, by Linda Hunt; "If the world doesn't suit you, change it!"

That's why we have tools...
<Cough> One of my favorite movies. And the line is: "the world is what you make of it friend, If it doesn't fit, you make alterations." (Which doesn't change the sentiment of your quote.)

Here's another of my favorite lines: "...Jake...fell off his horse...?" And: "I think there's only a couple a guys up there, and this *******'s one of them!"

OT, I know, but I LOVE Silverado.
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Old 02-10-16, 10:13 AM
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Originally Posted by Wheever View Post
<Cough> One of my favorite movies. And the line is: "the world is what you make of it friend, If it doesn't fit, you make alterations." (Which doesn't change the sentiment of your quote.)

Here's another of my favorite lines: "...Jake...fell off his horse...?" And: "I think there's only a couple a guys up there, and this *******'s one of them!"

OT, I know, but I LOVE Silverado.
Thanks for the clarification! I Googled it to get the exact wording but nothing came up so I had to wing it. You still got the right idea.

I became friends with James Gammon, the actor who played Dawson, who spoke the last line in your post; his daughter lived in my building. I saw him in the elevator one day and said that line to him and cracked him up. Great guy; was so sorry when he passed.

BTW, Silverado is never OT...
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Old 01-03-21, 12:40 PM
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I have the same issue, bought some Northwave Celzius winter shoes and I cannot move cleats back as I have them on my Shimano shoes. I prefer cleats more towards the back instead directly under the ball of my foot. I would still need to move cleats about 10-12mm back.

First problem is these shoes are winter shoes and when you remove the insole you cant access cleat plate, inside of the shoe is shut for insulation.

Looking from the bottom of the shoe, the cleat is at most backward position, I would want to put them to the red dots approximately, but the cleat plate extends beyond screw holes (until the blue line). So to move the cleat to red dots, the cleat plate would need to move that much beyond, and then I try to push with something from the inside I can feel that actually the slot ends somewhere around blue line, so even if I drilled from the bottom to the red dots, the cleat plate couldnt move backwards any more.

I am so pissed, I dont understand how can there be such difference in cleat position between Shimano and Northwave, I can move cleats on my Shimano 15mm backwards compared to cleats on the Northwave shoes.


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