Need advice on clipless pedal system selection.



hutchewon

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Aug 27, 2011
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I am a 63 year old male returning to cycling after a 23 year absence. My new bike came with toe clips which I find inconvient and dangerous. I am currently riding my bike about 9 miles a day trying to get in shape for much longer distances. I have been looking at two very different clipless systems, Look and Speedplay. I must admit I am a little biased in favor of the Look Classic because I have a young french friend who races for Look, but I realize there is no practical basis for my bias. Could someone offer some insight into the differences between these two systems? I am also willing to consider other options if appropriate. Thanks in advance, hutchewon
 

vspa

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Jan 11, 2009
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In practice, they are not that different. I have heard that the Speedplays give you a bit more clearence when pedalling in a bend, you can clip/engage into the pedal from both sides and they give you more floating percentage (floating is the ability to move your feet while clipped and riding, from left to right from the heel perspective). Other than that they follow the same functioning philosophy,
 

vspa

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Jan 11, 2009
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yes it does,
the good news is that you can buy a pair of cycling shoes that you can use on almost any brand of pedals that you finally choose,
in the sole there are screws and a platform to adapt to the pedals through a cleat that they provide,

but checkout pedal + shoe compatibility before purchasing !
 

hutchewon

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Aug 27, 2011
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Thanks for all of the info.:) if the dual side entry is a plus for the speedplay, what advantage do the look pedals have that would make them so popular?
 

tafi

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Jul 31, 2003
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The Looks are more reliable, cheaper, have fewer bearing problems, and have a far simpler cleat which doesn't cost the earth to replace (remember you also have to walk around on them occasionaly). They also already have more float than most of us will ever need. I can already hit my ankle on the chainstay with the Look Keos so I don't see the sense in having more float than that.

Look is also the company which invented the clipless pedal (it is simply a downsized mechanism based on the ski binding) so they have also been around a lot longer.

I don't find I have too many problems clipping in to single sided pedals. Single sided ones are usually weighted so that they "sit up" to catch the front of the cleat.

In the end it is a matter of personal choice. I can see how double sided entry could be attractive to a clipless newcomer. But I learned to use clipless before speedplay became widely available so I don't think it need be that big an issue.
 

hutchewon

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Aug 27, 2011
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Excellent information! I think I am going to buy the graphite Keo Classic. If I can use clips without killing myself, I should be fine with the Look pedal. What type of foot motion is required to release the cleats? Thanks again for the info, Hutchewon
 

digibud

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Nov 29, 2010
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Occasionally I ride into town and have occasion to walk around and I have chosen to use some Shimano mtn bike pedals (I don't recall the number) that rotate and use SPD. I have Shimano road pedals that are a bit awkward to walk in since the SPD cleat isn't recessed but when I know I won't need to walk around they are great (nice BOA system). When I want to be able to walk I use my mtn bike spd shoes. Very nice hybrid for my use.
 

vspa

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Jan 11, 2009
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Originally Posted by hutchewon .

What type of foot motion is required to release the cleats?

Thanks again for the info,

Hutchewon
rotate your foot - heel first - to the right, it becomes second nature quite soon, in some models (like the Keo Classic) you can also adjust the pedal to release your feet from easy to hard, it is recommended that you start with the easy or medium release pressure, this is done by turning a small bolt in the back of the pedal,
good choice, i also prefer the look style pedal systems,
 

hutchewon

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Aug 27, 2011
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Thanks to everyone! Great information. I took the plunge and bought the Keo 2 Max. I came home from the bike store and practiced getting in and out while leaning against a tree. Right now, I am lying on the couch watching the bike race, waiting for it to cool off so I can ride with my new pedals.
 

64Paramount

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Jul 25, 2009
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Originally Posted by hutchewon .

Thanks to everyone! Great information. I took the plunge and bought the Keo 2 Max. I came home from the bike store and practiced getting in and out while leaning against a tree. Right now, I am lying on the couch watching the bike race, waiting for it to cool off so I can ride with my new pedals.

Good for you, Hutch! /img/vbsmilies/smilies/icon14.gif

I'd advise that you ride around close to home for awhile and practice clipping in and clipping out over and over before you go on a ride. I'd probably do that before each ride for the next week or so, just to help you get that clip in/clip out motion down so you can do it without thinking....

Have fun!