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Advice/experiences from speedplay owners...(16 posts)

Advice/experiences from speedplay owners...arcadiandj
Jan 1, 2004 6:51 PM
I am an ex-cyclist who hopes to be one again some day. Was forced to climb off the bike because of runner's knee/patellar femoral knee pain that evolved into IT band pain. After a recent fitting, a fitter remarked that I might benefit from speedplay pedals. Do any of you have any thought/experience that are relevant to my issue? Also, how did you decide you wanted to buy the pedals with less or more float? Any thoughts/guidance would be greatly appreciated. Thank you in advance.
re: Advice/experiences from speedplay owners...Woof the dog
Jan 1, 2004 8:16 PM
mmmm, i like the pedals, all this float is great, but I start to question who needs all that float. it's 30 degrees of float, but when you pedal, unless you are some kind of freak, your feet don't rotate/move around more than say 5-10 degrees. If you did, you'd be hitting your cranks and/or chainstays with the toe/heel of your shoes, respectively. So, it seems to me that it is not all that float that makes your knees feel better. Rather, it is how easily can you move your foot around. I had some looks, and the cleats, new or used, were not rotating all that well with the pedaling motion, which caused knee discomfort. 5 degree spd's do not have enough float as I tend to move my heel out on the downstroke. So, if you find any other pedal that has very nice smooth unrestricitve! float over 10 degrees without any kind of centering, it should work as well. I also have time ATACs for my mtn bike, and these pedals allow me to pronate (if thats the right word) without restrictions too.

if you are looking for more info, search past posts for speedplays. There have been TONs of threads. Some praise them, some others like other pedals. Bottom line, speedplays are not known to be low quality; cost just about as much as any other good pedal, so give 'em a try. But don't expect them to not mug up with dirt. They ain't all apple pie, ya know, but I haven't heard of any pedal that is apple pie, and those who say that their pedals/cleats work just as new... well, they all either lie, or they don't ride enough. Speedplays are not that light if you factor in the cleats, cleats do wear, metal butterflies do wear, plastic pedal bodies do wear, so expect some sloppiness after decent milage.

Speedplays are also good because when you are not pedaling, say down the hill, you can move your feet around into a more comfortable position. Sprinting may be not as good as with more restricitve pedals because your feet move around too much. Set up the cleats right, cause if you put them too much forward you won't like them i bet. I had to move my cleats all the way down the shoe to get proper positioning over the spindle.

I have no clue about the new X series with adjustable float though. People say they are harder to click into.

good luck

Not all float is the samerubbertoes
Jan 5, 2004 4:01 PM
I have been a Speedplay user since the Magnum days. I have had chronic knee troubles. I have also used other limited float systems, (SPD,Look). The advantage of the Speedplay system is that there is no detent. The Look system has a "preferred" center despite the float. This light pressure is enough to aggravate a sensitive knee. The Speedplay float is truly pressure free float. I will never use anything else again.
re: Advice/experiences from speedplay owners...Al1943
Jan 1, 2004 8:28 PM
I've had petellar problems all my life and have had 5 knee surgeries. After switching from SPD road pedals to Speedplay X1 pedals my knees have felt much better. Another advantage to the X series is how quickly they engage and release, and I've never had an accidental release. The X1's with titanium spindles have a 185# rider limit. The X2's are the most cost effective in the long run. The X1's have a slightly shorter spindle. I use cleat covers at rest stops to avoid getting the cleats loaded up with dirt.
Ex runner - Speedplay Zerosoutofthesaddle
Jan 1, 2004 9:50 PM
I quit running last year because of IT tendontis. During my first marathon, I has some IT pain and it didn't resolve with rest. I did an extensive course of PT and even had a cortisone injection but no luck. I'm still unable to run. I use Speedplay zeros on both of my road bikes. I've never experienced IT pain from cycling. I was concerned about all the float that the X series pedals had so I bought the Zeros - the Zeros have adjustable float that you can limit (15 degrees to 0 degrees). I've got them maxed out at 15 degrees and have just left them that way. Hope that helps.
re: Advice/experiences from speedplay owners...Juanmoretime
Jan 2, 2004 2:00 AM
I've been a Speedplay user since 1992. I've had some IT band problem, I'm a runner also, and chronic tendonitis in the knees. Look pedal used to really set off the pain in my knees, with Speedplays I have zero knee issues. Buy a pair and try them, if they don't work out you can easily sell them on this site or Ebay. Speaking of Ebay, it should be the place to get a decent price on them has some decent prices on them too.
re: Advice/experiences from speedplay owners...arcadiandj
Jan 2, 2004 4:57 AM
Thank you so much for the input. I tried to search the archives for additional info, but didn't come up with any speedplay specific threads. Perhaps I need to be more patient? Thanks each of you again.
Try thisLen J
Jan 2, 2004 6:08 AM

At the bottom, just hit search button again.

General IT band fix = stretchesKerry Irons
Jan 2, 2004 5:30 PM
I've not had this myself, but several people have reported on the syndrome, and the "cure" seems to be aggressive stretching (not injections or surgery, in most cases). People describe a streching routine they've gotten from a PT, and it seems to involve more suffering than most stretch programs, but is also the common thread for people who have gotten through the IT band problem.
re: Advice/experiences from speedplay owners...trek5900cyclist
Jan 2, 2004 6:16 AM
Read my review on the Speedplay Zero Ti. I have never trusted Speedplay pedals and you might not either after reading my review. It is at the very top.
It's unfortunate....divve
Jan 2, 2004 7:51 AM
...your friend sustained injury. Arbitrarily blaming the equipment for his unfortunate accident however is unfair.

Aside from a possible (rare) manufacturer defect, I can only think of user installment error for this type of problem. The Speedplay manual clearly warns against fastening the cleat screws too far. It may cause the whole set-up to warp and bind, which seems to have happened to your friend.
They also recommend regular application of a dry lube on cleat mechanism and pedal ties. It will make things smoother and reduce wear. Not lubing is unlikely to actually cause you to be "welded" in however.

Personally, I've been using the Zero pedals for over a year now in all weather conditions, without any releasing problems whatsoever. The design in my opinion is solid and reliable.
It's unfortunate....MShaw
Jan 2, 2004 8:52 AM
I didn't read the review, but I've had friends that have such a funky pedaling style that they've twisted their feet out of their Speedplays once or twice before they changed.

I've owned Speedplays in the past. I even raced them at the track with no worries. But then again, I don't move my feet around all that much pedaling either.

If you've never used them before, its going to feel like you are pedaling on ball bearings for about 7-10 rides. After that, your feet find their "natural" position and you don't notice it any more.

That help?
re: Advice/experiences from speedplay owners...arcadiandj
Jan 2, 2004 6:22 PM
How do I find your review? Sorry, new to this forum. Thank you for your input.
There were many factors involved there...biknben
Jan 5, 2004 3:06 PM
The pedals only played a part in what happened. I've experienced similar binding with Speedplays. If you crank those bolts down you inhibit the springs from working properly. This is stated in the installation instructions. I backed out the bolts a little and everything worked properly.

The improper installation may be why the pedal didn't release. Beyond that, the rest was his fault. Many of us have tipped over when we couldn't get out of our pedals. You don't "tip over" and go sliding into an intersection. Sounds like he panicked, locked his breaks, and made it worse for himself.

I could see why you may bash the product because it is difficult to set up. Yes, it's not as easy as Look or SPDs. On the other hand, the manufacturer is not totally to blame for what you witnessed.

I sincerely hope your friend is doing well.
Zeros have been great for meB2
Jan 2, 2004 8:23 AM
I don't have any knee problems. I just like the pedal. Easy in and out. Two sided entry. Light.

Buy the "Coffee Caps" and keep em handy in your jersey pocket. The cleats don't like the pavement or especially gravel much.

Highly recommend
re: Advice/experiences from speedplay owners...Broomwagon
Jan 2, 2004 8:18 PM
I had arthroscopic surgery on my left knee in 1995 due to Chondromalacia (pain beneath the kneecap). My surgeon, who is a cyclist, recommended Speedplays. I've been using them ever since and have experienced very little pain if any at all. While the lack of pain is probably more a direct result of the surgery than the pedals, I can say that the pedals haven't hurt either.

All I can say is that I like the free float of pedals.

Good luck.