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Clydesdales/Athenas (200+ lb / 91+ kg) Looking to lose that spare tire? Ideal weight 200+? Frustrated being a large cyclist in a sport geared for the ultra-light? Learn about the bikes and parts that can take the abuse of a heavier cyclist, how to keep your body going while losing the weight, and get support from others who've been successful.

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Old 07-23-17, 08:17 PM   #1
Staypuft1652
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More durable spd's?

I've had some shimano m520's about a year, roughly 1000 miles on them. Only commuting use, no rain or offroading. While I weigh a substantial amount, I would expect these to last a lil while longer, but they're both audibly clicking/grinding now. I know they are rebuildable, but the cost does not seem justifiable seeing as they go for $25 or so new. Does anyone know of a more robust spd style pedal that's reasonably priced ~$50 or so? Got some candy 1's but they eat cleats. TIA.

Edit: Let me know if I am being unreasonable.
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Old 07-23-17, 08:38 PM   #2
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I'm a big guy and have been riding m520s for 10 years. You probably got a bad set. One consideration is the 540s and XTs are supposed to have better bearing seals which would hopefully increase longevity.
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Old 07-23-17, 09:04 PM   #3
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I'm a big guy and have been riding m520s for 10 years. You probably got a bad set. One consideration is the 540s and XTs are supposed to have better bearing seals which would hopefully increase longevity.

Thanks!
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Old 07-24-17, 04:21 AM   #4
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Are you certain that they are not just loose? That sounds like a cleat rattling in the pedal problem.
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Old 07-24-17, 08:22 AM   #5
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Are you certain that they are not just loose? That sounds like a cleat rattling in the pedal problem.
The pedals and cleats are tight. The noises only occur while pedaling also.
For the time being I put some old look delta's on. Will get either a new set of m520's or m540's.

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Old 07-25-17, 06:09 AM   #6
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Some "clip less" click even when they are new, and tight. I've had success with a blast of Teflon lube to the mating area.
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Old 07-29-17, 09:41 AM   #7
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I've had some shimano m520's about a year, roughly 1000 miles on them. Only commuting use, no rain or offroading. While I weigh a substantial amount, I would expect these to last a lil while longer, but they're both audibly clicking/grinding now. I know they are rebuildable, but the cost does not seem justifiable seeing as they go for $25 or so new. Does anyone know of a more robust spd style pedal that's reasonably priced ~$50 or so? Got some candy 1's but they eat cleats. TIA.

Edit: Let me know if I am being unreasonable.
I have had the same problems, I assume that I got more miles out of them. There is a cheap shimano tool for taking them apart link to tool

The M520 are cheaply made, they have 62tiny ball bearings (3/32"** that can get crapped up. This happened to a couple of sets of the M520s.

For low priced pedals got some VP vx race a couple of years ago for about $20. I like some of the higher end VP's because they have sealed cartridge bearings.

The shimano xt pedals are a better design and use 24 larger ball bearings, I haven't had problems with my XT's but they aren't cheap ~$60.
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Old 07-29-17, 09:43 AM   #8
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I have had the same problems, I assume that I got more miles out of them. There is a cheap shimano tool for taking them apart link to tool

The M520 are cheaply made, they have 62tiny ball bearings (3/32"** that can get crapped up. This happened to a couple of sets of the M520s.

For low priced pedals got some VP vx race a couple of years ago for about $20. I like some of the higher end VP's because they have sealed cartridge bearings.

The shimano xt pedals are a better design and use 24 larger ball bearings, I haven't had problems with my XT's but they aren't cheap ~$60.
Thanks! For the time being I put the crank bros back on but they arent my favorite. I was looking at the VP's, thanks for the recommendation!
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Old 07-29-17, 09:44 AM   #9
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The pedals and cleats are tight. The noises only occur while pedaling also.
For the time being I put some old look delta's on. Will get either a new set of m520's or m540's.
take the pedal off the bike a turn the spindle slowly feeling for a gritty feel or tightness. When I have problems with mine they felt tight enough that it was hard to turn the axle by hand.
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Old 07-29-17, 09:46 AM   #10
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take the pedal off the bike a turn the spindle slowly feeling for a gritty feel or tightness. When I have problems with mine they felt tight enough that it was hard to turn the axle by hand.
The grittiness comes and goes, by hand. I sacraficed them and took them apart with channel locks. The grease had turned to liquid and the axle/bearings/bushings were loose. I just tossed them.
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Old 07-30-17, 08:52 PM   #11
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Thanks! For the time being I put the crank bros back on but they arent my favorite. I was looking at the VP's, thanks for the recommendation!
I like the sealed roller cartridge bearing especially on my touring bike, I want as little trouble on a tour as possible.
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Old 07-31-17, 08:54 AM   #12
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The pedals and cleats are tight. The noises only occur while pedaling also.

I tour and commute using SPD pedals. What you are hearing could be caused by the cleats wearing down. (Wear can be accelerated if you walk on hard surfaces like concrete.) When that happens, they can move around slight while pedaling, causing noise. When is the last time you changed the cleats?
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Old 07-31-17, 10:04 AM   #13
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Just like the others; I'm surprised you got so little mileage out of your Shimano SPD's. I'm a long time user of SPD style pedals.
My first step into clipless pedals were Shimano M520. Used them for a few years for everything; 35 mile roundtrip commutes,
long club rides, century charity rides, etc. In all kinds of conditions; summer heat, rainy nights, light snow, light off roading, etc.
I wanted something lighter; switched to titanium Xpedo SPD's. I was still able to sell my used M520 on Ebay, even after all of the
abuse I gave it. Are you a spinner or masher? I also rarely stand on my pedals. Maybe give M540's a try.
HUDSON RIVER, NYC by 1nterceptor, on Flickr
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Old 07-31-17, 02:06 PM   #14
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I tour and commute using SPD pedals. What you are hearing could be caused by the cleats wearing down. (Wear can be accelerated if you walk on hard surfaces like concrete.) When that happens, they can move around slight while pedaling, causing noise. When is the last time you changed the cleats?

I changed the cleats a couple months ago. I tossed the pedals but thanks for the input.
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Old 07-31-17, 02:11 PM   #15
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Just like the others; I'm surprised you got so little mileage out of your Shimano SPD's. I'm a long time user of SPD style pedals.
My first step into clipless pedals were Shimano M520. Used them for a few years for everything; 35 mile roundtrip commutes,
long club rides, century charity rides, etc. In all kinds of conditions; summer heat, rainy nights, light snow, light off roading, etc.
I wanted something lighter; switched to titanium Xpedo SPD's. I was still able to sell my used M520 on Ebay, even after all of the
abuse I gave it. Are you a spinner or masher? I also rarely stand on my pedals. Maybe give M540's a try.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FFyX...IoDLA&index=67
[url=https://flic.kr/p/aw8Qcn]
I try to stay between spinning and mashing. I dont have a cadence sensor of any type but try to find a happy medium. I dont stand on the pedals either except for bumps, I try to lessen the stress on the rear wheel from my weight. I hope to find a decent pair of spd's as I love their easy reliable engagement.
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Old 07-31-17, 02:30 PM   #16
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One other question, do you use a power washer to clean your bike?

Definitely give Shimano SPD another shot. They're the standard others try to copy;
Wellgo, MKS, VP, Ritchey, Xpedo, etc., etc.

US$9 more than you budget; but looks good:
Shimano Deore XT PD-M8000 Mountain Pedals
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Old 07-31-17, 02:38 PM   #17
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One other question, do you use a power washer to clean your bike?

Definitely give Shimano SPD another shot. They're the standard others try to copy;
Wellgo, MKS, VP, Ritchey, Xpedo, etc., etc.

US$9 more than you budget; but looks good:
Shimano Deore XT PD-M8000 Mountain Pedals
Thanks for the link. No power washer, if I ever clean the bike I only wipe it down. Im not overly confident in the seals, I get where your coming from. Both these and the pair of r540's I had briefly ooze grease from around the axle seal shortly after first use but I had inquired about it and was told it was normal. If I try shimano again it would be at least the m540's for that reason, and I could service them without extra tools.
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Old 07-31-17, 03:01 PM   #18
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...I know they are rebuildable, but the cost does not seem justifiable seeing as they go for $25 or so new...
Ball bearings are not expensive. Just service the ones you have.
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Old 07-31-17, 03:03 PM   #19
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...I could service them without extra tools.
The tool is not expensive either.
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Old 07-31-17, 03:09 PM   #20
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They exist no longer. Tool + ball bearings negates the $25 original price of pedals.
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Old 07-31-17, 04:14 PM   #21
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Huh? you can get new ball bearings and the tool for less than ten dollars.
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Old 07-31-17, 04:20 PM   #22
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Huh? you can get new ball bearings and the tool for less than ten dollars.
My mistake, sorry. When I had checked before, the tool was around $15. I just ordered some VP spd knock offs, so I can give them a shot. Thanks all for your help/experience.

When I have some disposable cash I will hit nashbar up for some m540's or the xt's linked. I did love how well the shimano's functioned. Anything's gotta be better than these crank brothers, sometimes they work great, others you have to scrape till they catch. I don't know if eggbeaters work better not having the platform cage or not.

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Old 07-31-17, 04:30 PM   #23
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I've also worn out a pair of M520s. I couldn't tell you how many miles I had on them, but I bought them in 2010 so they had plenty of use and I don't feel that they owed me anything. Part of the issue may be that for several years this was my only bike, so these saw plenty of year round use.

I replaced them with some M540s which I expect will last me a long time, especially now that I've got several bikes and I switch up my ride quite frequently.

I do like SPD and I've got them on all my bikes, including a pair of XT's (great pedals!) and some XTR M9020s.
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Old 07-31-17, 04:38 PM   #24
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I've also worn out a pair of M520s. I couldn't tell you how many miles I had on them, but I bought them in 2010 so they had plenty of use and I don't feel that they owed me anything. Part of the issue may be that for several years this was my only bike, so these saw plenty of year round use.

I replaced them with some M540s which I expect will last me a long time, especially now that I've got several bikes and I switch up my ride quite frequently.

I do like SPD and I've got them on all my bikes, including a pair of XT's (great pedals!) and some XTR M9020s.
Yea I shouldn't really complain, I do weigh alot and did use them to climb some steep hills around here. I guess $25 for a year roughly and 1000 miles or so isnt so bad. I think they just don't use the best grease and the seals on the cheaper pedals aint the best.
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Old 08-03-17, 01:51 PM   #25
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Just also ordered a set of the vp vx trail race.
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