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Pedal Adapters - Part II

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Pedal Adapters - Part II

Old 10-20-21, 01:11 PM
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ciclista_pazza
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Pedal Adapters - Part II

I recently created a thread asking about pedal adapters because at the time, my mechanic incorrectly told me that my '79 Schwinn Le Tour required 1/2" pedals. However, he was wrong and it turned out it needed 9/16" pedals, so I was able to use the pedals I wanted and adapters were not required.

However, I've found that with this vintage bike, for some reason it seems like my feet don't sit out as far (width-wise) as they do with my modern bike. This is not only uncomfortable, but I'm suddenly having knee pain where I hadn't had that previously. So now I'm thinking of actually getting pedal extenders so that the pedals sit out a little wider, as several members had mentioned that the extenders help the "Q-factor" and those with knee pain.

When I created that original thread, one forum member posted this comment:
The problem with pedal adapters, besides the increased "Q-factor" mentioned by others above, is that it creates a longer lever arm for the pedal, which can increase risk of crank failure at the pedal eye. This is particularly a problem if your pedaling style tends toward "mashing" rather than spinning. That said, my wife has been using pedal extenders on her bike for years, to increase the Q-factor, and has yet to see a problem. But she's not a "masher."

Do other members agree that this is a serious concern? I looked up crank failure and a Sheldon Brown article on that subject makes it sound pretty serious. On the other hand, I don't want to develop chronic knee pain. I'm not sure exactly what a "masher" is but I don't do anything weird pedaling - I pedal like a normal cyclist . Any suggestions on what I should do?

Here is the original thread for reference: Pedal Adapters
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Old 10-20-21, 01:16 PM
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i doubt that mashing would be a problem. but getting out of the saddle to put down a lot of power, that might be a problem.
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Old 10-20-21, 01:33 PM
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Originally Posted by spelger View Post
i doubt that mashing would be a problem. but getting out of the saddle to put down a lot of power, that might be a problem.
Thanks. I find that I don't tend to stand up on the pedals of my Schwinn as much as I do with my hybrid bike, so maybe that won't be an issue.
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Old 10-20-21, 02:03 PM
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If you keep everything tight it would take so much more force than you could ever apply to create a problem. Mash away!
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Old 10-20-21, 02:11 PM
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Take these things before I throw them out.
If they don't work for you, you throw them out or give them away.... deal?
They are only $20 new in the first place and I've sold the bike I used them on.
Easy-Peasy



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Old 10-20-21, 03:42 PM
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I talked to my bike shop and they don't have any extenders in stock but they said they come in different sizes like 18, 23, 28 mm. I found one on Amazon that's 20 mm. I asked the bike shop guy and he was saying I'd probably need to get a fitting to confirm which size I'd need. Would you all recommend a specific length for the extenders? I have no clue and am guessing maybe 23 mm is a good start? Any suggestions about that? Thanks.

Edit - almost all options on Amazon are 20mm so is that what is typical for extender length?

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Old 10-21-21, 01:44 PM
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Originally Posted by macstuff View Post
Take these things before I throw them out.
If they don't work for you, you throw them out or give them away.... deal?
They are only $20 new in the first place and I've sold the bike I used them on.
Easy-Peasy


Thanks. I appreciate it. I sent you a private message to ask about this but haven't heard back so just let me know. Thanks again.
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Old 10-21-21, 02:49 PM
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It's just physics. You'll simple exert more force on the junction of the pedal and the crank when you move your foot away from the crank. If the force is great enough, the crank will break. You have to find a compromise that works for you.

I use extenders because my knees are much more stable with them; with extenders, they move up and down with no discernible sideways deviation. Without extenders, my knees move in and out (WRT the top tube) as a I pedal. I've chosen to adapt my bike to my body rather than train my body to adapt to my bike.

Why are you considering extenders?
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Old 11-03-21, 05:05 PM
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FWIW - I climb out of the saddle w/ my extenders & easily weight 225lbs clothed & never broke an extender or crank. these are what I use during winter months when my clown feet are wearing winter boots

SUNLITE Pedal Extenders

FGT Motorsport Bicycle Pedal Extenders for 9/16 Inch Cranksets (21mm Spacers) Bike
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