Another beautiful ride RUINED by )(&*&%$ CLIPLESS PEDALS!!!



king4wd

New Member
Feb 19, 2005
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A couple of tips for dealing with clipless pedals.

1) Everybody falls. Every last one of us has come to a stop and started lurching like mad as we slowly fell over. All you can do is laugh it off. Much like the buttered bread theory you will almost always go down with an audience. I don't know why, it just is that way.:D
2) Wellgo makes pedals for almost everybody (including nashbar, K2 and ritchey). One quirk with them I found is that the cleat has to be especially tight on the shoe. If it gets loose for any reason, it becomes much harder to clip out.
3) With some pedals such as SPDs one can clip out twisting either toe or heel out. With look type cleats best results come from clipping out heel first with slight backward pressure.
One other note. As a purely recreational cyclist I know you can't always plan your clipouts. However that little trepidation of not being able to confidently unclip has given me the extra motivation to make it up many hills I might have given up on.
 

Hypnospin

New Member
Apr 10, 2005
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Mr. T and I both have our release set at the absolute highest release setting, and never have any problem either.

so now the blame has never been so clear.

"one crack from my staff if you do not understand, one if you do" Zen Teaching

tcklyde said:
Your pedals didn't ruin your ride, you did. Make an effort to learn clipless pedals or stop complaining. It's your fault you fell, not the pedals.
 

chevo1412

New Member
Apr 16, 2004
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I had a few 'anxious' moments until I learnt it is far easier to swing your heel in towards the frame. I use the left side. Plus try to plan your stops.
 

-={T}Bone=-

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Feb 10, 2005
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How about crashing, when your stopped at a stop light, with many cars around you, and your foot is touching the ground?!?

That was me about 3 years ago. It had just rained a little and I was on my way home. I felt good. I stopped at a traffic light and put my foot down as normal. A few seconds later, I just fell over.

No wind hit me, my foot didn't slip ( I don't think )...as I was lying on the ground, I thought, what an idiot! I never laughed harder in my life. One of the cars next to me asked if I was alright. Of course I was.

That was the best crash I ever had. Unfortunately, not my only one.

Crashed hard taking a right-hand turn at 30 miles an hour in San Diego's Balboa Park. Middle of the day, tons of people around. There was sand in the turn. I was banged up pretty badly. Have bad scars to show for it. People always asking me what I got them from.

The sad part of that was, with all the people that saw me go down, not one came over to ask if I was OK. After almost a minute of lying on the ground, I got myself up, sprayed water on my wounds to get some of the dirt out, checked my bike, and rode another 20 miles home in severe pain.

When I got home, my girlfriend drove me to the hospital where they scrubbed my wounds! :eek:
 

ender Wiggins

New Member
Sep 7, 2004
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Your legs look really pale (and bloody) in the photos you posted. Mine already have a nice tan line going by biking one day a week. You need to get out more often:p
 

mds2076

New Member
Jul 27, 2004
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A good example of why I'm sticking to cage/platform pedals even on a $6500 mtb. Inefficient, yes, but the bike can go into the side of a car without me attached to it.
 

tcklyde

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Dec 17, 2003
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cydewaze said:
Sweet! You just won me $5. I bet Jess we'd get a troll in this thread, and I was about to fork over the cash until you showed up.

I owe you one man. :)

I deserved that for my sh$tty attitude. I apologize for the attitude. I guess I feel like the exasperated computer tech support guy: a thousand people calling up screaming about how they're computer broke when they never read the instructions.

My point is just that one shouldn't go out for a nice ride without a good command of the machine they're riding and then blame the machine when they fall. I got my share of scrapes and bruises learning to use my pedals. But one shouldn't blame the pedals. If you learn to use them, they're much more effective and in many cases much safer than traditional pedals. Don't blame your equipment. Learn to use it and it will treat you well. Would you blame the bike if you'd never ridden one before and fell the first time you tried?
 

cydewaze

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Jun 17, 2004
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Of course I understand, but this was really meant to be more of a "vent her frustration" thread than a "blame the pedals" thread. Jess is new to riding, and has been really enjoying it, but just when she thinks she has the pedals mastered, something like this happens to her.

Interestingly, now that I've switched her pedals out from the Fortes to my old Shimanos, she's having no problems at all. We had a 20 mile ride on Sunday that included at least two unexpected stops for her, and she was out of the pedals in an instant.

If using a different pedals makes it easier for her, that's fine. I don't mind spending the money. I just don't want something like a set of pedals turning her off to cycling when she's just getting into it. It's easy for me because I've been using clipless pedals for close to 20 years, but she's 34 and jumping into cycling on the deep end, and I expect her to have a bit of a learning curve. I'm very impressed at how well she's doing actually. Last summer we did a 45 mile ride through hilly terrain, 30+ miles of which were in the rain, on a bike that she'd owned less than 6 months.

It helps her to come here and make a post like this and know that she's not the only one to have had problems getting comfortable on clipless pedals. It doesn't help her to be told that it's her fault and not the pedals' fault, because of course she already knows that. ;)

Cheers! :)
 

tchak attack

New Member
Dec 3, 2004
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You have to stick with it (puin intended) Clippless pedals will give you the best power tranfer than standard platform pedals and the next step up strap peddals. When I first started ridding clippless I took two embarassing falls similar to yours. eventually you will learn when to "twist to unlock" trust me it will become second nature, just like driving stick shift. Stay with it
smile.gif
 

juf2m

New Member
Aug 2, 2004
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Hi guys! Just thought I'd write a note of thanks for all your words of sympathy, encouragement and sound advice.


For some reason bicycles and I are not getting along too well lately. It turns out that in my clipless fall I wrecked my wheel and have to have the whole thing replaced. Crazy, isn't it?

But here is today's anecdote. Today was another nice day so I thought I'd do a little mountain biking. No clipless pedals to screw me up there! (although the ones I am using now work much better for me :) )

As I go along the pathway, I noticed (too late) that there were a couple of broken beer bottles on the path and glass everywhere. I went through the thinnest patch, and kept an eye on my front wheel as I rode along. Looked great. Turned off onto the offroad path. Rode at least an hour until I noticed that my reer wheel was making a funny rattly thumpy sound. I stopped and looked and discovered to my HORROR that I had a flat! :eek: Flat as a pancake. Great, I thought, I brought my repair kit........but found out that I had left the pump on the other bike! DOH!!! :eek:

So................I half rode, half walked the bike for miles home. That thing is heavy! I couldn't ride up the steep hills because the wheel was just flapping so I had to hoist it up, slipping in mud etc. And even riding slowly on flat terrain I'm sure you can guess the rolling resistance of a flat tire....

I am pooped!!! If these things go in threes hopefully there will only be one more minor incident and then I can ride free and clear for the rest of the summer.
 

cydewaze

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Jun 17, 2004
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juf2m said:
So................I half rode, half walked the bike for miles home. That thing is heavy! I couldn't ride up the steep hills because the wheel was just flapping so I had to hoist it up, slipping in mud etc. And even riding slowly on flat terrain I'm sure you can guess the rolling resistance of a flat tire....
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It's just extra training resistance. :)
 

DavidfromLondon

New Member
Nov 12, 2004
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I got the clipless pedals about a year ago for my Decathlon hybrid
587014s.jpg

because someone told me that toe-clips were dangerous as they don't let you out and could break your legs if you crash. Probably an exaggeration (and would depend on how tight you keep the things, but anyhow I haven't (yet) fallen over due to the clipless pedals. I'll keep you all posted on that one! Once I got used to them they were great. The only drawback is that my pedals are hybrids (i.e. you can use them without cleats), so I have to have a shoe with a cleat protruding, which makes walking a slippy affair. Now I'm so used to the things I can't cycle without them (I end up lifting my feet off the pedals when attempting to pull the pedals up :) )

I use the chevo1412 method of release (as it were :p ), i.e. heel of left foot inwards; watch the back wheel though...

I think the reason I've been lucky (and I've had a few of those heart-stopping moments when you go to put your foot on the floor and forget), is that I've adjusted the things to release my feet at a loose tension. But I haven't had my feet fly off when pulling up on the pedals.

I cycle 20 miles a day to and from work in London, and the cleats do add to efficiency. I suppose toe-clips would too.

Someone turned left today and nearly wiped me out, so I'm going to get an Air Zound thing I think. But that is another story (will attempt to find the correct thread)...
 

Eden

New Member
Feb 28, 2005
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I've come up with a odd bit on these lines. I just purchased my first pair of road shoes. I usually use mt shoes as the clips are recessed and easy to walk on, but the road shoes were a good deal - $17 down from $99 - I wear a size 4.5 (36) so there's not such a big demand - and I have a bad habit of curling my toes up up, which I am hoping the smaller toe box on the road shoes will cure me of. I put my extra set of spd cleats on them, but boy are they hard to get into the pedals. Its easy enough to get out thankfully. I'll work around adjusting them to see if I can make it easier to clip in, but maybe I'll have to replace the pedals with a more road friendly cleat?

Anyone else have experience using shimano spd's with road shoes? I'd like to keept the spds and be able to swap shoes back and forth depending on where I'm going and if I want to walk when I get there.
 

DavidfromLondon

New Member
Nov 12, 2004
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Eden: I tried a Shimano recessed cleat shoe first of all when I decided to try that type of binding, and the things would not clip into the pedals at all. I had to take the shoes back to the shop for shoes with the protruding cleat.
 

Eden

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Feb 28, 2005
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DavidfromLondon said:
Eden: I tried a Shimano recessed cleat shoe first of all when I decided to try that type of binding, and the things would not clip into the pedals at all. I had to take the shoes back to the shop for shoes with the protruding cleat.
My husband had the same problem with his first pair of recessed cleat shoes too - we had to cut the soles up pretty good to make them work, but the problem I've having now is a little weird. These new shoes don't have a recess, they are normal road shoes so the cleat just sticks on the bottom. My recessed mt bikes shoes clip in easily. I am hoping I just need to get the cleat positioned better - my new shoes are a size smaller than the old ones.
 

JRobert

New Member
Feb 25, 2005
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tcklyde said:
Your pedals didn't ruin your ride, you did. Make an effort to learn clipless pedals or stop complaining. It's your fault you fell, not the pedals.
Now, that IS the most compassionate response I've seen here in a while
(said tongue in cheek, thinking a pointy shoe up someones behind is warranted).

That will truly encourage beginners to stay with it and improve the sport.
 

hun1948

New Member
May 7, 2005
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I have been riding over 50 years, racing for 7 years and I hade only 1 fall because of the clipless pedal. I bought my first clipless in 1980 and had a fall on the second day I went out to ride. It happened at a very busy intersection because I forgot that I had new pedals. I just went down on my left in front of more then 50 onlookers. I could hear some people gigling as I got up and pretending that something was wrong with my pedals, that was wery humiliating:)
juf2m said:
Today was a gorgeous day....ideal for riding. I put on my very cute new riding outfit, loaded up with water, map, money, health card, phone, granola, sunglasses, gloves and was off.

I'll start by mentioning that this is only my 2nd year riding, but my abilities and confidence have made great strides. Today however, the cycling gods had it in for me. :(

I rode down the nature path for about 10 minutes until I got to the first intersection I had to cross. I started to roll slowly toward it and planned on riding across but then I heard a car and though I'd stop. But I had forgotten I was wearing those )(*&*&^%$$# clipless pedals! I have been riding my mountain bike lately and it has ordinary pedals so I guess I forgot. Then I got the sickening feeling as I began to topple over that I wouldn't get unhooked in time. It is the most helpless feeling in the world, isn't it?

CRASH

I crashed onto my side, with my knee hitting both the bike and grinding into the gravel/pavement. Lots of expletives rang through the air. A garbage truck rolled by and the guy asked me if I needed any help. I smiled and said noooooooooo. :eek:

It's not the knee, or the pain or the ugly way it will look for weeks to come, but the total loss of dignity that I hate. And to have to cut the ride off that soon and go home!!! After all the time it takes to get ready!! There was a huge flap of skin hanging down, all white and rubbery and I knew I'd have to turn back. So my bike and I limped home. The breaks must now be mis-alligned because it went "tsh tsh tsh" all the way home. I was too ****** off even to check which wheel it was, will deal with that later.

What a waste of a good riding day!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I think this is my fifth crash and considering how often I just fall down on the pavement walking, it's a miracle I have any knees left!

Some pictures for your interest....sorry about the long post, I just thought I'd vent to some people who might have gone through this humiliation too! :p
 

jack rackham

New Member
Apr 7, 2005
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king4wd said:
A couple of tips for dealing with clipless pedals.

1) Everybody falls. Every last one of us has come to a stop and started lurching like mad as we slowly fell over. All you can do is laugh it off. Much like the buttered bread theory you will almost always go down with an audience. I don't know why, it just is that way.:D
2) Wellgo makes pedals for almost everybody (including nashbar, K2 and ritchey). One quirk with them I found is that the cleat has to be especially tight on the shoe. If it gets loose for any reason, it becomes much harder to clip out.
3) With some pedals such as SPDs one can clip out twisting either toe or heel out. With look type cleats best results come from clipping out heel first with slight backward pressure.
One other note. As a purely recreational cyclist I know you can't always plan your clipouts. However that little trepidation of not being able to confidently unclip has given me the extra motivation to make it up many hills I might have given up on.
4) Always stop directly adjacent to really soft patches of grass...
 

David I am

New Member
May 9, 2005
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It was kinda fun and kinda intimidating reading this thread:

as a 60 year old dude who used to be a consistent rider:
now gettin back ino it:

having just purchased some "Frog" pedals
beCAUSE they are supposed to be infinitely easy
to get in and out of
:and allow the pronation i know I'm prone to....

pronation I'm prone to ain't that cute and i din't even notice..:p

Anyway ....
I don't think I'll fling away my trap pedals JUST yet
 

nsanelizardking

New Member
Feb 14, 2005
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i just got clipless pedals in march. I have been riding with them really frequesntly and havent fallen yet at all....they are speedplay and reaaaaallly easy to get in and out of......this thread makes me think that it is only a matter of time though :)