beginner question clip in pedals



mogse

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Jul 11, 2007
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up til now i have been using normal trainer and standard pedals on my road bike. would wearing cycling shoes with the clip in pedals make a big different to performance?
 

Pendejo

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Apr 8, 2006
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mogse said:
up til now i have been using normal trainer and standard pedals on my road bike. would wearing cycling shoes with the clip in pedals make a big different to performance?
Yes. Once you use them you'll never want to go back. Your feet supply the energy to the pedals and thus you want them as tightly coupled as possible.
 

mogse

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Jul 11, 2007
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Pendejo said:
Yes. Once you use them you'll never want to go back. Your feet supply the energy to the pedals and thus you want them as tightly coupled as possible.
thanks for the quick reply
are the semi clips that sit at the front of the pedals and go over the front of the shoe any good? so I could use normal trainers?
 

SweetLou

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Jun 11, 2007
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Those are called clips, not semi-clips. The other type are called clipless, because they don't use the clip.

Yes, you can use them with your normal shoes. But, the clipless type are generally considered better. Cycling shoes are made with a very hard sole so there is less flexing. This means better transfer of energy from your foot to the pedal. Most people also think clipless are safer. It is much easier to pull your foot out of the pedals than it is to pull out of clips.

Also, to really benifit from clips or clipless, you need to learn to spin, not mash the pedals.
 

flash79

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Jul 13, 2007
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A few years ago I was working in a bike shop and everyone kept telling me to get clipless pedals and ditch my clips. I never thought I would like them but once you are used to them you will never want to go back. I only have clipless pedals on my bikes. Not only does it make a difference climbing hills but your acceleration on the flats is also improved as I have seen in my riding. Of course you do have to learn to spin like mentioned before. But all in all they are great once you get used to them and over the fear that they will not come undone fast enough. Believe me you can get out of the clipless pedals a whole lot faster than the clips.
 

Kinema

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Jul 17, 2007
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flash79 said:
once you get used to them and over the fear that they will not come undone fast enough.
This would be the biggest downside to clipless pedals (everyone i know calls them cleats /shrug)

They really are fantastic, but for a amateur cyclist like me, not knowing how to unclip correctly has caused a few tumbles. I rode through town the other day with them and you learn how to clip in and out pretty quickly when theres cars around you :D
 

mogse

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Jul 11, 2007
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Kinema said:
This would be the biggest downside to clipless pedals (everyone i know calls them cleats /shrug)

They really are fantastic, but for a amateur cyclist like me, not knowing how to unclip correctly has caused a few tumbles. I rode through town the other day with them and you learn how to clip in and out pretty quickly when theres cars around you :D
i think i will get some,
whats this spin term i keep hearing?
 

flash79

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Jul 13, 2007
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Spinning is the proper circular flow of your pedal stroke. Whereas you are pushing down with one crank arm and pulling up with the other in one constant motion. Thus it looks like you are just "spinning the crank arms".
 

City

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Mar 26, 2007
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I always used standard pedals for a few years but yesterday out of the blue I decided to go and get some clip on's!!!

WOW!!!!! what took me soo long is all I can say and yes once you get them you will never go back! :D promise






mogse said:
up til now i have been using normal trainer and standard pedals on my road bike. would wearing cycling shoes with the clip in pedals make a big different to performance?
 

ishiwata

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Jul 25, 2003
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The terminology for pedals in the post toe-clip era has always annoyed me. What do you call the act of engaging your cleat with your clipless pedal? I call it "clipping in." So I'm clipping into my clipless pedal. Whereas with toe clips, I called it "sticking it in" or something else filled with innuendo. I understand the difference, but it's confusing to new cyclists, who just want things to be simple.

Anyhow, Mosge, I definitely suggest trying out clipless. If you really want to stir the pot, you should ask the forum which type of clipless system is the best.
 

travelgirl

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Jul 31, 2006
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Anyhow, Mosge, I definitely suggest trying out clipless. If you really want to stir the pot, you should ask the forum which type of clipless system is the best.



So, I'll stir the pot. As I was riding tonight with my cross-trainers snugly encased in the clips on my pedals I got to thinking about this clipless thing.

For a relative beginner, basically in my 2nd summer of riding - and total newcomer to the very idea of clipping in to cliplessness - where does one start? And what system should I look at.

I have a Trek hybrid and am working towards a 100 mile ride in September.
 

j.r.hawkins

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Jan 13, 2007
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hi travelgirl,

I’m a beginner cyclist coming up on my first anniversary. I ride roughly 7-9 hours a week commuting to and from work.

If you’re contemplating clipless pedals for the first time I’d suggest mtb-style systems. The advantages are:
  • recessed cleat allows you to walk reasonably safely across a variety of surfaces when off the bike
  • some models of touring shoes are available that are indistinguishable from casual shoes, except for the strap to keep laces safe from hungry chainrings. These have limited flex to make walking comfortable while still being stiff enough to ensure efficiant pedalling and avoid the dreaded “hot spot” from insufficient support.
Having tried the second-tier manufacturers like Wellgo I’d recommend sticking with Shimano as good value for money. The Wellgo’s bearings were gritty within the first 500km. :mad:

I use Shimano's M520’s on both my bkes. The bearings are still smooth after a year and about 5,000km on the commute bike, getting in and out is easy and they don’t let go when they’re not supposed to. :)

You WILL take a tumble the first time you use them, so I'd suggest you find a grassed playing field and practice coming to a stop and clipping out (actually, you should reverse that order - clip out first! ) for a few sessions each day on the weekend before venturing into traffic. When you do go over, which you'll do at least once, take the hit on the side of your hand and focus on turning the fall into a roll.

I would never go back to flat pedals, let alone toe clips, and that goes for techy off-road too.
 

ishiwata

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Jul 25, 2003
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travelgirl said:
Anyhow, Mosge, I definitely suggest trying out clipless. If you really want to stir the pot, you should ask the forum which type of clipless system is the best.



So, I'll stir the pot. As I was riding tonight with my cross-trainers snugly encased in the clips on my pedals I got to thinking about this clipless thing.

For a relative beginner, basically in my 2nd summer of riding - and total newcomer to the very idea of clipping in to cliplessness - where does one start? And what system should I look at.

I have a Trek hybrid and am working towards a 100 mile ride in September.

I've only used two types of clipless pedals in ten years -- SPD and Look. I started with SPD on my mountain bike, and then put them on my road bike, which was fine with me. Then someone gave me a set of Looks and I loved them. They're out of fashion now, and the cleats are humongous, making walking a real chore. If I were just getting into clipless now, I think I'd give Speedplay a try; people seem to really like them.
 

monkeymagic

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Jul 23, 2007
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ishiwata said:
I've only used two types of clipless pedals in ten years -- SPD and Look. I started with SPD on my mountain bike, and then put them on my road bike, which was fine with me. Then someone gave me a set of Looks and I loved them. They're out of fashion now, and the cleats are humongous, making walking a real chore. If I were just getting into clipless now, I think I'd give Speedplay a try; people seem to really like them.
Just tried clipless pedals for the first time, eggbeaters - fantastic. Though I'm obviously very new to the pedal world I found these were easy to use and did exactly what I anticipated. Managed to stay vertical the whole time too :D
 

travelgirl

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Jul 31, 2006
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monkeymagic said:
Just tried clipless pedals for the first time, eggbeaters - fantastic. Though I'm obviously very new to the pedal world I found these were easy to use and did exactly what I anticipated. Managed to stay vertical the whole time too :D
Any tips or tricks to keep in mind? I'm going to get mine this week and give it a try...
 

Jace1283

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Sep 3, 2006
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i rode up and down my street just practicing unclipping and stopping, i haven't fallen over yet in several rides 10-20 miles. I bought some shimano cycling shoes with some tread so you can still walk around in them and the pedals can clip in or have small pedals should i use regular shoes. I just twist my heel outwards and they pop out. If i got real serious i'd put them on my mountain bike and get some carbon fiber shoes for my road bike but for everday use i got the ones above. If you can, bring your bike and try them before you buy em to check fit(important) and see how you like em.
 

Frigo's Luggage

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Sep 16, 2006
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The standard systems are Look and SPD. Looks are considered the gold standard and SPDs are frequently preferred by beginners. I rode Looks for about ten years and went to Speedplay X series about three years ago. I would never, ever think of going back.

If you are new to clipless pedals, I would definately recommend the new Speedplay Light Action pedals that are specifically designed for beginners and ease of use. Do not buy anything else. Really, do not get anything else, except maybe other Speedplays.
 

kyrlos

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Aug 2, 2005
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travelgirl said:
Any tips or tricks to keep in mind? I'm going to get mine this week and give it a try...
Practise Practise Practise...and don't even think of going into heavy traffic until clipping in and out is like second nature. Once you got that down ,you'll never go back...:D