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Old 12-15-09, 03:28 PM   #1
fig
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Bent friendly SPD shoes anyone?

I know this has probably been discussed to death here, but I am not having any luck finding real info on google or bing. So I got a new bent a week ago. A used KMX X class. So I immediately took off the pedals that came with it, and put on my shimano SPD pedals. On my first ride, I noticed that my ankles were hurting as I pedalled. I unclipped and put my feet on the pedals with the center of the pedal closer to my heel, and the pain stopped. I haven't been able to find a pair of shoes where the clip is closer to the heel, and not by the ball of the foot.

Anyone seen a bent friendly pair of SPD equipped shoes? Actually any bent friendly clipless pedals of any brand would be nice. I don't mind trying different brands, I just need something where my foot is not like I am pushing on the pedals with my toes. It felt like I was riding with high heels on, not that I would really know how that feels.

For now, it's back to plain ole pedals.

Last edited by fig; 12-15-09 at 03:28 PM. Reason: speeling
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Old 12-15-09, 06:53 PM   #2
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Did you adjust your cleats as far toward the heels as they would go?
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Old 12-15-09, 07:18 PM   #3
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Did you adjust your cleats as far toward the heels as they would go?
No, didn't try that because where I was pushing from with my shoe unclipped wouldn't even be close to where it would adjust to. I was pushing from close to my heel and the clips adjust only around the ball of your foot. I would like the cleat mount about 2 or 3 inches further down the shoe toward the heel.
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Old 12-15-09, 07:33 PM   #4
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Maybe you could try some platform or plain cage pedals to find out exactly where you want your feet to be positioned. Not aware of cycling shoes with as much range of adjustment as you speak of.
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Old 12-15-09, 09:51 PM   #5
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I put the regular pedals back on, and it seems like the center of the pedals are right on my arch. That's the most comfortable for me. But finding any shoes where the cleats mount down that low seems to be impossible. Hence the cry for help on here. I went to my LBS, and they have really gone downhill in the last few years. All I got from the kids behind the counter was "try online". Luckily I didn't go out of my way to stop in there. They didn't have a set of generic panniers, or a set of water bottle holders that clamped on. But they must have millions in DF bikes hanging on all four walls. I don't get it.

So my next idea was maybe I could mount the cleats in a pair of shoes myself. Then I can control where they go. Looking online I found this:

http://www.excelsports.com/new.asp?p...ajor=5&minor=6

Is that mounting brackets as well as the cleat? I am thinking that I could put the metal bracket in the inside of the sole of a shoe, and drill the two holes to screw in the cleat, and even dremel out some of the rubber on the bottom of the shoe. Has anyone tried making their own cleat mounts before?
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Old 12-15-09, 10:20 PM   #6
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The arch over the axle sounds uncomfortable to me. Would rather be applying pressure somewhere in the vicinity of the ball of the foot. That's where the cleats are on my 'bent-friendly' Shimano shoes. Are your pedals far enough away from your seat that your legs are almost-but-not-quite straight when the ball of your foot is on the pedal? That's the standard recommendation. I've never had ankle pain issue riding any kind of bike so I'm not sure exactly what to advise.
Anyone else?
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Old 12-16-09, 04:11 AM   #7
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I have never had any ankle pain either so this was new. I unclipped and basically put the arch of my feet right centered on the pedal. I do have the pedals at the right length, just somehow with the shoes clipped at the balls of my feet it wasn't comfortable. Like I said, I felt like I was in high heels, or walking on my toes, even though I wasn't extending out that far. I can ride my DF with the clipless pedals with no pain whatsoever in my feet or legs. I switched to a bent because I was experiencing pain in my tailbone. I went through about 6 different saddles, and had them in just about every configuration you can imagine. Low, high, forward, backward, leaned forward, etc.

I guess it's not that imperative that I get a pair of clipless shoes, but I was hoping to find something out there I just couldn't dig up online.
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Old 12-16-09, 03:24 PM   #8
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I have never had any ankle pain either so this was new. I unclipped and basically put the arch of my feet right centered on the pedal. I do have the pedals at the right length, just somehow with the shoes clipped at the balls of my feet it wasn't comfortable. Like I said, I felt like I was in high heels, or walking on my toes, even though I wasn't extending out that far. I can ride my DF with the clipless pedals with no pain whatsoever in my feet or legs. I switched to a bent because I was experiencing pain in my tailbone. I went through about 6 different saddles, and had them in just about every configuration you can imagine. Low, high, forward, backward, leaned forward, etc.

I guess it's not that imperative that I get a pair of clipless shoes, but I was hoping to find something out there I just couldn't dig up online.
When I first set up my bent, I did the usual "place the ball of the foot on the clipless pedal (Look MTB), and then made sure my leg was slightly bent at the knee." However, I experienced some discomfort, so I experimented and eventually shortened the main tube bringing the cranks a little closer. (I'm riding a Catrike, so this is fairly easy to do. In doing so, I needed to lose a link or two of chain.) I made sure, as well, that my cleat was mounted as far aft as possible, but it is still under the ball of my foot[/U][/U][/U]. Everything has been fine since then (4,000 km). I would not ride with my arch over the pedal as I would never achieve an efficient stroke (i.e. maximum power) or be able to pull up on the pedal. Mike
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Old 12-16-09, 07:19 PM   #9
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Maybe you have the boom too far out, making you reach for the pedals. That will place too much strain on your Achilles tendon, too. Just as a suggestion, I took my Dremel tool(tm) to one pair of SPD-compatible shoes and elongated the slots about a quarter inch, then slid the cleats all the way back to the new stop. I wouldn't recommend enlarging the slots by too much, but a quarter to three-eights might make a difference.
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Old 12-17-09, 03:29 AM   #10
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Thanks guys. I will try moving the boom in a little.
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Old 12-27-09, 08:59 PM   #11
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I had a similar problem with achiles tendon pain. I couldn't move the cleat far enough back to suit me, so I customized a pair of cycling shoes by machining and drilling and tapping bolt holes in a small aluminum plate that I dug into the top of the shoe, then filled it over with shoe glue and epoxy. Epoxy was too rigid so I used a thin layer of it covered by shoe glue. I was able to put the cleats further back than the stock shoe would allow. Not back to the arch, but a bit past the rear of the ball of the foot. Heel and achilles pain promptly went away and I've had my bent smile return ever since.
I've modified another pair of shoes the same way. The second pair aren't cycling shoes, just very comfortable thick soled runners. Love em!
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