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Newbie Notes and Questions About Clipless

Road Cycling “It is by riding a bicycle that you learn the contours of a country best, since you have to sweat up the hills and coast down them. Thus you remember them as they actually are, while in a motor car only a high hill impresses you, and you have no such accurate remembrance of country you have driven through as you gain by riding a bicycle.” -- Ernest Hemingway

Newbie Notes and Questions About Clipless

Old 08-22-15, 04:31 PM
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Inpd
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Newbie Notes and Questions About Clipless

Hi,

I wanted to cheaply try clipless so bought these shoe/pedal/cleat package (Amazon.com: Venzo Road Bike For Shimano SPD SL Look Cycling Bicycle Shoes & Pedals 46: Sports & Outdoors)

Here are my observations.

Clipless is nice. I feel connected to the bike and I feel and am measured as faster. Note that one of the reasons I'm faster is because I'm petrified of stalling and falling over so I climb hills really fast :-) After getting used to the float I feel comfortable climbing out of the saddle but I still don't feel as confident as when I have regular pedals.

The down side is that it seems with SPDs you can only clip out when the pedal is at the 12 oclock position which takes some getting used to. If I suddenly have to stop I'm toast as I can't clip out after a sudden stop.

Another is that if you fall its really hard to unclip when on the ground. The shoe that hits the ground naturally unclips but the other side does not easily. God help me if I fall on the road.

I would never commute in clipless initially. Its just too easily to stall when your learning.

Walking in road bike clipless is a real pain. On hard surfaces you can easily fall over.

So some questions:

a) With MTB clipless can you more easily clip out at any position?
b) If MTB clipless are similar in power transfer than road clipless (as some purport) then why would I ever not buy them?
c) Has anyone tried this MTB clipless package? http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00...26R0FQ7QSZ8MJF
I like them since they are mountain bike clipless but also have a double sided pedal that can be used for regular shoes.
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Old 08-22-15, 05:03 PM
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Insert comment about your theory of ultimate performance here, and why everyone must do the same.

SPD set the standard for overall ease of use, security, and being able to clip out easily in any position, toward the inside or out. Yes, some are better at specific traits, but few are as well rounded. Beginners should loosen the retention force screw most of the way. Commuters also may want to loosen simply because of the shear repetition of clipping out.

SPD is very common on the road, and very efficient, especially when wearing a shoe with a comparible stiff sole. SPD pedals usually allow the foot some float or rocking motion, which, like any sort of float, can be good or bad depending on the rider and situation. Yes, some road specific systems are better, mainly where extremely high forces, especially retention is needed. If you are not measuring your performance down to seconds per hour, well, then maybe other attributes are more important.

Give what you got some time, chances are it will fade from thought completely. If it isn't right, you will know it, and exactly what characteristics you want to improve on next try.
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Old 08-22-15, 05:46 PM
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To clarify...SPD is mtb cleats....what you have, road cleats, are called SPD-SL.

Also, when I started riding with a group, I expected to be the best not one there with the mtb style...but at least half had them.
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Old 08-22-15, 06:14 PM
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Look on the back of the pedals, there might be an adjustment screw to loosen the tension. that will let you clip in and out easier.

Clipping out... I think you mean the 6'oclock position. at the bottom of the stroke is the easiest way to clip out. You should become proficient at clipping out quickly as you have discovered. Go in a field and ride around in a low gear and practice over and over clipping in and out at different speeds. you should be able to come to a complete stop, keep your balance briefly then clip out. Generally get used to clipping one foot out before you stop (or both to start out) so you aren't rushing once you stop.

road cleats are made for riding, not walking. Most people don't walk very far in them.. maybe into a gas station/coffee shop to get water/food on long rides.

personally, i find SPD (mtn bike) cleats to be too floaty for road riding. love them on the dirt but not the road.
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Old 08-22-15, 09:46 PM
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It's easier to clip out when your leg is straight than bended.
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Old 08-23-15, 12:11 PM
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Thanks. What's a good road bike pedal that is easy to get in and out off. Dual use I.e. platform one side clip in the other would be useful for weekend rides with kids.
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Old 08-23-15, 01:11 PM
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Originally Posted by Inpd View Post
Thanks. What's a good road bike pedal that is easy to get in and out off. Dual use I.e. platform one side clip in the other would be useful for weekend rides with kids.
Amazon.com : Shimano Deore XT Trekking PD-T780 track pedel Trekking black : Bike Pedals : Sports & Outdoors

This will do the trick. It's good for both clip and non clip shoes.
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Old 08-23-15, 01:30 PM
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I would also look at the M324 and A530. Both are also SPD one side, flat shoes other side.
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Old 08-23-15, 02:21 PM
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Originally Posted by Hornplayer View Post
I would also look at the M324 and A530. Both are also SPD one side, flat shoes other side.

Thanks, but correct me if I'm wrong. These only accept SPD on one side and road bike shoes have SPD-SL (look) cleats. Am I missing something?
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Old 08-23-15, 08:06 PM
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I don't know of any SPD-SL or other road style cleat systems that have dual-sided pedals. If you have two bikes, you might want to set up the ride with kids bike with dual sided SPDs.
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Old 08-23-15, 08:21 PM
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Originally Posted by bassjones View Post
I don't know of any SPD-SL or other road style cleat systems that have dual-sided pedals. If you have two bikes, you might want to set up the ride with kids bike with dual sided SPDs.
Thanks
. That's good to know.

i ended up buying a road bike shoe ( Shimano A65) and Shimano A530 dual use pedals which come with SPD cleats.
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Old 08-24-15, 07:43 AM
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You are correct. I don't know of a Dual purpose shoe with a flat side for street shoes that accepts road cleats. Plenty of people ride road bikes with mountain (SPD) cleats. Many road shoes will accept either cleat.
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