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

Pedal/shoe investment

Old 08-09-09, 10:58 AM
  #1  
limelitesc
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Pedal/shoe investment

Hello everyone. Been lurking for a while here. Thanks for all of the great information.

I am sure this has been beat to death, but I am ready to upgrade to some road shoes/pedals.

I just dumped some money in my new ride (MB le champion CF), so I am limited on funds to make a huge purchase. I am currently using some old NIKE mtb shoes and the cheapo spd pedals supplied by bikes direct.

I have a couple bucks left and I feel the pedal/shoe upgrade would be the most beneficial.

I generally ride 30-50 miles with some longer rides on weekends. Average about 18.5 mph.

Seemingly overwhelming. Obviously, I see carbon fiber and think "Oh, must have that..." etc.

But like I said, I can't throw down 400-500 bucks on the combo. Where to look for value and performance?

Thanks again!

GP

*Ps - sorry my first post had to mention BD.
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Old 08-09-09, 11:06 AM
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Daytrip
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I'd recommend Shimano 105 pedals, which will run you around $50 if you shop around. You can pick up a decent pair of road shoes for under $100. Not Sidis, but you'll get plenty of comfortable miles out of them if they fit properly.
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Old 08-09-09, 11:20 AM
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limelitesc
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Pricepoint is running a sale on the Time RXS pedal for $110 and the Sidi Zeta for $120.

Can't help but be attracted to brand names in this game. I hate myself for it.

What should I be looking for in a set up?
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Old 08-09-09, 12:00 PM
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Kai Winters
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Use what you have now and save your money until you have enough to get some high quality pedals and shoes. They are worth the cost.
Spending up to $300 for shoes alone is a worthwhile investment. The feet take the biggest beating of your entire body and ill fitting, uncomfortable shoes make a ride miserable...ask Greg LeMond, he is a huge proponent of good fitting shoes.
I prefer Look pedals...quality of components and reliability...My pedals are Look 396 which are years old lol. They have a solid aluminum body and good bearings which too me is more important than shaving a few grams for a "plastic" body. I had a pair of Look pedals with a cast non-metal body and after one season they wore out where the spindle met the pedal body and I heard many other people suffer the same problem...and I'm not a heavy rider nor am I heavy.
Because my pedals are old I have no experience with the new pedals and will hope to hear from others. The Look Keo pedals seem pretty nice though if I were buying again I may look at the Campy pedals for durability...but would ask for peoples thoughts on the subject here.
Speed Play pedals are also a quality pedal that are either loved or not so by riders. They use a different "float" system and if they work for you, you love them.

Regarding shoes: Sidi makes a wonderful shoe with a price for everyone. They tend to be a bit on the narrow side using a European style last but if your foot fits a Sidi shoe you can not really go wrong. You can spend a huge bundle on Sidis...over $500...but you are buying "fancy" once over the $250ish price point and not necessarily a much better shoe. I have ridden varied Sidi shoes for years and prefer them for cool weather riding still owning a pair of Genius'. I'm not a fan of the "fishing line" closure. I could feel the "line" closure and thought it uncomfortable. I like 2 velcro straps and their top strap closure system. You can also easily buy replacement parts for them.

Carnac, Northwave, etc. are also very nice shoes but they all have fit/size specifics I believe. I found Carnacs to have a bit of a higher instep than I needed or felt comfortable with.

My favorite shoes are Northwave. Unfortunately they are not widely in bike shops but you can find them online pretty easily. I find they have a bit wider toe box and allow a bit more "movement" room for the toes. I had been using a pair of the Evolutions for around 8 or 9 years now and have recently replaced them with a pair of the top of the line Aerlite SBS. Very comfortable, light and secure fitting for my feet.

Go to your local shop or shop that carries at least Sidi and start trying them on. DO NOT walk in them. That is not a test for cycling shoes lol...surprising how many people I have sold shoes to walk around the shop and say they are not comfortable lol. Just feel them on your feet...are there tight spots that seem to be pinching. If so try the next half size. Try their Mega wide...these are wider for us "American Feet" lol. If the Sidi's fit you but they don't have the style you want do not worry too much because Sidi uses the same "last" for all their shoes and generally all models will fit nearly the same but not perhaps exactly. Usually bike shops will work with you if you have to order them.

I suggest a carbon sole because of the stiffness and ability to spread the pedaling force across the entire sole eliminating hot spots, etc. I prefer the "Look" style pedals for exactly the same reason...they tend not to have hot spots.

Sorry so wordy but I can't emphasize enough how important shoes and pedals are in contributing to a good ride experience.
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Old 08-09-09, 02:20 PM
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limelitesc
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not too wordy at all - just the information i was looking for.

My feet area already taking a beating, which is why i feel like i need to get into a new set up now.

I will head to the LBS, per your suggestion and see what I find.

thanks again,

GP
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Old 08-09-09, 02:26 PM
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Originally Posted by limelitesc View Post
Hello everyone. Been lurking for a while here. Thanks for all of the great information.

I am sure this has been beat to death, but I am ready to upgrade to some road shoes/pedals.

I just dumped some money in my new ride (MB le champion CF), so I am limited on funds to make a huge purchase. I am currently using some old NIKE mtb shoes and the cheapo spd pedals supplied by bikes direct.

I have a couple bucks left and I feel the pedal/shoe upgrade would be the most beneficial.

I generally ride 30-50 miles with some longer rides on weekends. Average about 18.5 mph.

Seemingly overwhelming. Obviously, I see carbon fiber and think "Oh, must have that..." etc.

But like I said, I can't throw down 400-500 bucks on the combo. Where to look for value and performance?

Thanks again!

GP

*Ps - sorry my first post had to mention BD.
I'm very happy with my Cat-1 Stelvio shoes from Performance Cycles. That have a stiff CF sole and accept both 2-hole SPD cleats and 3 hole SPD-SL & Look cleats. They cost $100 on sale.

I used them with my SPD pedals for a while but have now upgraded to Look Keo Classics.

Shoes are a great investment. The bike became more comfortable, faster and I can mash or spin with greater results.

Michael
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Last edited by Barrettscv; 08-09-09 at 02:43 PM.
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Old 08-09-09, 02:41 PM
  #7  
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My first road pedels ended up being a Shimano SPD setup. Not knowing any better I thought they were OK, until I started getting some knee pain on longer rides. Talked with the owner of my LBS and he hooked me up with a set of Speedplay Zero Chrome Molys. I also spent a little time on Ebay and found a great pair of Specialized road shoes for a dirt cheap price. Putting the two together I could tell the difference right away from my SPD setup. Like night and day. When I bought my Felt Z25 I moved the Speedplays over and have been a happy rider ever sense.

Your getting a good bike so don't cheap out on the pedals/shoes. You'll be happy you didn't!
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Old 08-09-09, 03:07 PM
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AndrewP
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Spend the money on shoes that really fit. I just paid $300 on SIDI mega MTB shoes that have much of the look of road shoes but I can walk with SPD cleats. I have super wide feet, but normal width SIDIs were $180. Thes are half the weight of my previous MTB shoes and are more comfortable every time I use them. Save money on the pedals, but note that Shimano and Wellgo pedals and cleats are not totally interchangeable - Wellgo cleats didnt unclip as easily from my Shimano pedals..
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Old 08-09-09, 03:15 PM
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frank828
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just use the pedals that came with the bike
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