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sudden failure of spd cleat during ride?

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sudden failure of spd cleat during ride?

Old 04-11-17, 09:47 AM
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Randybb
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sudden failure of spd cleat during ride?

I ride shimano spd pd-a530 pedals on my road bike, and this past weekend I was going for a long casual ride, nothing too fast or hilly. I was just cruising along, not putting much power to the pedals when suddenly this clunk clunk clunk developed right under my left foot with each pedal rotation. I got off the bike, spun the cranks and pedals to make sure it wasn't on the bike, inspected my cleat, didn't see any problem. I loosened the cleat and then tightened it back down. Still, clunk clunk clunk every time my foot passed over the top of the pedal stroke. I eventually realized my foot had a fairly significant vertical play while clipped in, so as I go from pulling up to pushing down during my stroke, it develops the clunk. I tried increasing the tension on the pedals, made no difference.

The cleats are fairly new, I replaced them at the end of last summer, and I just started riding again this spring. Maybe ~1000 miles on them tops. I don't see anything obviously different between the left and right cleats. It's super strange that this happened suddenly while just cruising along. Could it be something wrong with the pedals rather than the cleats? I was thinking it could be the shoe itself but the cleat seems completely solid on there.
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Old 04-11-17, 09:54 AM
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How old are the pedals? Have you kept them clean? Checked the pedal screw/bolts are tight?
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Old 04-11-17, 10:03 AM
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Pedals probably have more like 7-8k on them. I can't tighten the pedal bolts any more than they already are.

I should also mention on my next ride, the problem wasn't there initially, but then returned about 10 miles in, once again while cruising on a flat section, this time after powering up a few steep hills. It lasted for the final 30 miles of my ride, but if I kind of figured out how to change my pedal stroke to minimize it.
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Old 04-11-17, 10:04 AM
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This isn't likely to be the problem, but I'll mention something I experienced years ago while mountain biking with SPD's. After a short, intense climb, something felt and sounded terribly wrong with my shoe/cleat/pedal, I wasn't sure what was going on. I stopped and inspected things, and it was the sole of shoe, it had cracked. Just one more thing I'd recommend you check.
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Old 04-11-17, 10:35 AM
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Sometimes my pedals will click a little when puling up. Other times I don't notice it. I really haven't paid much attention to it, and consider it a sign of effort I'm putting in. I'll have to observe, but I'm not sure all brands are the same.

Is it only one side?

Once I had one of the hinge screws come loose on a pedal, but the symptoms were that one side stopped holding the cleat well. Fortunately nothing was lost, and I just loosened the tension and put it back together, then reset the tension.

Actually that could be a test, if you have double sided pedals, do you hear the clicking on both sides of the pedal?
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Old 04-11-17, 11:22 AM
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I have the same thing. It is not a clunk but I can feel one cleat loose vertically and hear clicking at the top of the pedal stroke.

This happens on two different bikes with the same model pedals, PD-M8000 SPD and it happens with either side of the pedals.

I use two different pairs of shoes and it happens with both pairs. I have changed cleats on both.

Only the brand and model of shoe are the same. One is a winter pair one half size larger to allow for thicker socks.


-Tim-
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Old 04-11-17, 11:35 AM
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Originally Posted by CliffordK View Post
Sometimes my pedals will click a little when puling up. Other times I don't notice it. I really haven't paid much attention to it, and consider it a sign of effort I'm putting in. I'll have to observe, but I'm not sure all brands are the same.

Is it only one side?

Once I had one of the hinge screws come loose on a pedal, but the symptoms were that one side stopped holding the cleat well. Fortunately nothing was lost, and I just loosened the tension and put it back together, then reset the tension.

Actually that could be a test, if you have double sided pedals, do you hear the clicking on both sides of the pedal?
It's only the one side, and it's definitely new and not normal. It's enough of a sensation on the bottom of my shoe that it's super annoying and seems like something is about to fall apart.

I've only ever noticed it while clipped in, not while riding on the bottom side of the pedals. When I ride on the other side of the pedals, it's usually just short trips around town though.
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Old 04-12-17, 08:10 AM
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Try standing beside the bike and clip in the wrong foot. That may help determine whether the offending component is the pedal or the shoe/cleat.
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Old 04-12-17, 12:26 PM
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Now that you are home, I'd carefully check the crank, bottom bracket, chainrings, and chainring bolts again. Perhaps drop the chain and rotate the cranks by hand. A tight chain link can also give weird effects, but not necessarily at the same point in the pedal stroke.

Pedal bearings?

As mentioned above, I've had a hinge pin come loose on one SPD pedal, but the symptoms were that it pulled out too easily. That is something to look at though. Just verify that everything on the pedal appears tight.

Spare parts are handy if you have them. Try different shoes with those pedals, or different pedals/bike with the problem shoes.
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Old 04-14-17, 06:42 PM
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Try a little bike grease in the springs of the pedals. It's best if you have a brush and can work it in between the spirals. It's just a little corrosion/grit causing the spring to cry a bit. Just a little Park Tool grease, and a good long ride with lots up uphill riding (to work the grease into the springs) and it'll go away.
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Old 04-14-17, 06:53 PM
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My first thought was that it was the shoe.
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Old 04-14-17, 06:55 PM
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Originally Posted by shelbyfv View Post
Try standing beside the bike and clip in the wrong foot. That may help determine whether the offending component is the pedal or the shoe/cleat.

+1 Andy
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