My first Clipless experience

Discussion in 'Cycling Equipment' started by Jaguar27, Jan 24, 2004.

  1. nutbag

    nutbag New Member

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    You're right, I have been scarred:)

    All good points.

    The main benefit with clipless is obviously comfort, but I'm just a club hacker who hardly ever rides more than 2.5 hours, so it's not really an issue.

    Like I said, when I can afford to supply all four of my bikes with clipless (and buy new shoes), I'll give them another try.
     


  2. Insight Driver

    Insight Driver New Member

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    Good luck, nutbag. In a lot of ways, I'm set and don't want to change. It just happened that my bike came with SPD pedals. As anyone else who has told you, once you get used to them, you don't want to go back.

    I am able to use more of the muscles in my legs because I can change my pedaling techniques as easily as I change my hand position on the bars. The advantage the clipless have over clips is I can pull backward on the pedal (which I do in some modes of pedaling) where if I did so in clips my feet would pull out.

    I've gone from platform to clips to clipless over a 40 year period.
     
  3. colbydmay

    colbydmay New Member

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    I got clipless pedals for my mountain bike about a year ago and love them. Rode around the neighborhood for an hour or two practicing and tinkering with the tension on the pedals and the alignment of the cleats. As others have said, I'll never go back...too efficient to give up. And fear will only contribute to further accidents while using clipless, so fret not...ride on!
     
  4. Greg-O

    Greg-O New Member

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    i work in a bike shop, and I am the only guy there without clipless pedals. I'm going in on tuesday, and after the shop closes, I'm gonna ask my boss about staying after and looking at the pedals and shoes. hopefully i'll be trying some soon. i'll be sure to keep you guys updated :)
     
  5. davek

    davek New Member

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    No, I'm deadly serious. If brakes are so good, why don't track racers use them? You've got to wonder, right?

    All these brake manufacturers with all the money they've got to throw at track riders and they can't persuade them to use brakes. Must be something wrong with the technology.
     
  6. trekrider

    trekrider New Member

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    I am of the opinion that on a road bike there is absolutely no question of the best choice for pedals. Clipless is the only way to fly. Mountain biking may be different...

    I no longer ride Mt. Bikes as I am no longer young and single with the time I used to have to enjoy trekking off to the mountains for the entire day with my bike on top of the car. Back when mountain riding was ALL I did I used something called the Powerstrap. Eventually I went and purchased clipless pedals for the mt. bike but seriously never liked them as much as the Powerstrap.

    Has anyone else tried these? They are absolutely incredible for releasing in a crash and hold rock solid while pedaling. Your feet come out and back in much easier than clipless for the occasional "toe tap" needed when mt. riding. If I was to ever ride again in the mountains I would ditch my clipless and go find these once again without question.
     
  7. nutbag

    nutbag New Member

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    Well, once again, I assume you're gaggin'. :D

    It's a different argument; to me, it's almost as silly as asking why they don't have drink bottles -- they don't need 'em, but the big guys NEED toe-straps. All that money in drink bottle companies...etc, etc.

    Just incase you're not gaggin', gov.......removing any unnecessary equipment from track bikes is, in my opinion, an over officiated safety issue; we know what the bloody UCI is like -- just ask Graham Obree. The idea is obviously not to have any superfluous equipment on the bikes.

    Brake levers and cables sticking out provide something to get caught on the guy next to you when you're sprinting shoulder to shoulder. There are so many crashes that I supposed they don't want a big STI lever piercing someone's sternum. Similarly, you're not permitted to use quick-release skewers because there's an increased risk of getting something stuck on another bloke's bike. Back when I hacked around a velodrome, we even had to use rounded wheel nuts!! Check out the UCI rules, they're ridiculous.

    They probably could have brakes on track bikes even though they don't need them, but like I said, the big guys NEED toe-straps.:)
     
  8. John Ewing

    John Ewing New Member

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    I went clipless about 5 or 6 years ago. My first fall occurred approx. 23 yards from the door of my workshop, right at the end of my driveway. It was my habit to mount the bike just outside the shop, ride to the end of the drive, then stop to look for traffic. This I did.

    When I reached the end of the driveway there was a car coming, so I braked to a halt and pulled my foot out of the pedal - backwards. Of course, nothing happened, at foot level that is. At head level the world started to slip sideways and then upwards as the bike and yrs trly cowped over sideways. I managed to get a hand down, so not much more than pride was hurt. The occupants of the car were treated to the sight of a beautiful pratfall, free admittance, This Way to the Egress.

    I think that was the only fall I've had due to the pedals (Shimano SPDs). However, for the first few weeks I rode in dread of what might happen in case of a crash - I had visions of the bike remaining hooked up on something while my body tried to cartwheel off somewhere, with my legs taking the brunt. I reckoned on a broken leg or torn ligaments at the least.

    When, three years later, I finally did come a cropper, the bike *did* remain hung up and I *did* do a cartwheel. But the pedals let go perfectly and the damage was limited to impact injuries only.

    Advice to beginners: don't tighten the clips before flipping your heels out sideways is second nature. But don't expect second nature to help you in a crash - you don't have time to think. So don't overtighten the clips anyway!
     
  9. Bolo Grubb

    Bolo Grubb New Member

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    The style of pedal can make a big difference.

    My bike came with SPD CLIPLESS and I had a very hard time with them. My brother-in-law has Shimano brand "look" style (not sure of the model. He likes his alot.

    So I went to the local bike store and found they had a pair of "Wellgo" look style pedal and i love them.

    I found they are much easier for me to clip in and out of.

    so I guess what I am saying is, if you have alot of problem with one style, maybe try another. Worked for me
     
  10. Greg-O

    Greg-O New Member

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    i tried my eggbeaters for the first time today, and I'm a little sore.

    First attempt:
    I pulled the bike next to a wall in my shop. I hopped on the seat, put my right arm on the wall, and rested my feet on the pedals. what now? do i push down? i pushed down. no result. I then remembered the manual said something about a different method of clipping in. Apparently you could put the pedal right behind the cleat, pull your foot back, and the pedal would roll onto your cleat. after about 10 minutes of this I managed to get my right foot in. My left foot followed shortly after. I then unclipped, and decided to try again. This time I could not get them in. I put all of my weight on my left foot and began to sort of wiggle my foot around. I also bounced up and down, hoping to find a sweet spot. No result. More bouncing. I was getting frustrated (uh oh) and bounced and wiggled a little harder. I heard a faint click, but kept bouncing (mistake!). My left foot had gotten clipped in, and I pulled the bike up with me. Without even time to react I was lying on the cold shop floor with my left foot still clipped in. Perhaps I should try this outside :D

    Second attempt:
    I put my bike next to a wall in the driveway. I did the rolling method of clipping in. Success in the right foot! Again, the left foot followed shortly. I started to pedal. I WAS DOING IT! I rode around in a circle, and decided to try to unclip. Which foot would I unclip? Left? no! right? do i turn the bars to the direction that i'm unclipping? what if i fall to the opposite side like everyone else? maybe i should try left? no! right! wait! left! turn the bars! wait! THUD. fall number two. this time I was outside, but i don't think anyone saw. After brushing myself off, I got up and tried it again. Sure enough, i clipped in, rode around in a circle, and clipped out :). I was getting the hang of it. Before I knew it, I was shooting up and down the block. I think I'm finally getting the hang of it :)
     
  11. westcj

    westcj New Member

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    I had been using clipless pedals for a only month or so before I had my 3rd or 4th bike race. I cruised up to the start line and guess what?......... stopped, couldn't get out of my pedals and went arse over head in from of 30 odd riders ,very embarrassing! only thing injured...............my ego!
     
  12. vkhalsa

    vkhalsa New Member

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    ya so as we speak i'm icing my knee. before i got my pd-r600's i read everything single piece of i could on clipless and this whole thread. i was dertermined that falling would not happen to me. i put the pedels onto my old mountain bike so if i did fall it wouldn't mess up my road bike. i road around in the back yard thinking that if i did fall i would hit the grass so it wouldn't be that bad. after clipping in and out a million times and trying different positions i decided to take a step up to my road bike. as i pulled the bike into the garage i forgot for one second that i couldn't get my feet out that quickly with zero momentum before i hit the ground. i fell onto the concrete smacking my knee and scratching my new pedels (i guess you guys were right, we all have these marks on our first set of pedels.) maybe i need some more practice...
     
  13. mingcat9

    mingcat9 New Member

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    I must've gotten lucky. my first time with clipless pedals, i was in a almost fully paved campground for the weekend. lots of grass, not hazards like psyco dogs (and mine's one of 'em), or little kids running around. I didn't even fall...once I actually started to pedal.:D
    it took a couple rides, but i love clipless and wouldn't have any other type of pedal.:D
     
  14. beels99

    beels99 New Member

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    Ok so, I love my new clipless pedals and i've had them for over a month, and i've been HOPING that the almost necessary falling wouldn't happen to me but lo and behold if finally did and i landed hard and bumped my STI to the side so i had to realign that, and just got like a little scratch or 2 barely noticable, but no actuall harm done thankfully...

    -The story goes like this.....
    I was pulling into my driveway after a hard ride and one of my brothers just parked along the street, and i said hello, and my other brother was sitting next to my car with his baby and that is like where i always pull in after my ride its just what I do and i didn't think that him and his baby were there for some reason and kept going forward pretty quickly and much to my dismay finally realized i was heading way to fast right for him and his baby so i turn to the side and brake hard COMPLETELY forgeting that i'm clipped in even though i've beef riding for a month and i fall over like an idiot into the grass...
     
  15. caligurl

    caligurl New Member

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    after reading this thread.. i have decided that my husband is out to hurt me.... you see.. i just got a brand new bike yesterday.. and he picked me out some clipless peddles... i now see that i'm in grave danger... i hope i don't fall tonight when i finally get to ride it!
     
  16. mingcat9

    mingcat9 New Member

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    you'll probably be fine! :) it's a bit scary to nearly fall, but as long as your pedals are somewhat loose, you should clip out if you fall.
    have fun!!!:)
     
  17. beels99

    beels99 New Member

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    yeah, its pretty easy not to fall, you should have little to worry about.
     
  18. Walrus

    Walrus New Member

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    I got clipless pedals a couple of days ago and will be trying them this weekend for the first time. I'm gald I've read some of your stories. I think I'll ride up and down the street for a while before joining my friends for our weekend spin (I too don't like the thought of falling over at traffic lights). For the record, I bought '03 Carnac Comet shoes for 50% off (couldn't resist), and the entry level Shimano's.
     
  19. Tuschinski

    Tuschinski New Member

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    My first Year I raced with toeclips and Cleats (it was actually the year of bernard hinaults introducing the look pedal).

    I was pretty lucky as I got the "brake hard, then unclip left foot with left hand" routine immediately. So when I started using Clipless the year after I was having np at all.

    Then I bought a bike for my bro, kinda forgetting to warn him of the dangers... We went cycling and sure enough we had to stop for a traffic light. You guys can imagine what I heard behind me

    *METAL+HUMAN ON TARMAC NOISES*
    LOUD AND PERSONAL CURSES.

    I had a very ANGRY Brother... he didn't say much nice to me that week:)

    -Nutbag:
    Sean Kelly agreed with ya:)

    On the Track/clipless.: Boardman used Time Atac (cheapo!)clipless pedals when he broke the Hour-record. Pursuit athletes often just go with Clipless.

    But for Sprint/keirin nothing beats a DOUBLE toe-strap. On the road you never saw doubles though :)

    On your insecure dealings with clipless: I think I know what your problem was. Clipless systems can feel really "loose", this can be solved by

    -Adjusting springresistance
    -Different cleats. Look and SPD have "LOCK" and "LOOSE" variants. Usually the pedal is shipped with the "Loose" cleats. Ask your LBS for the "Locks"
    -Look has pedals where you can set the "float" from 0 to 9 degrees. This way you can put the float where you want it.
    -Time has a lot of Float. try look or SPD if you don't like it
    - And lastly... the easiest is just stay with Toe-Clips. if you are happy, who cares? 99.99% prefers clipless. Well, you are perhaps one of those who doesn't.
     
  20. RC2

    RC2 New Member

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    Haven't fallen yet.

    But still have a good story to tell. Was driving around the neighborhood a while back. A lady was coming down a fairly steep/long driveway on a Trek... looked like a new bike, and she had a shiney new helmet, and what looked like brand new shoes and a gaudy jersey on.

    I thought she looked a little shakey on the bike so slowed down a bit. She made eye contact with me and came to a stop... and slowly fell to the ground. Came unclipped about the time I saw her take a small bounce and scramble to her feet.

    Took all I could muster not to laugh.

    :p
     
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