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There can only be one...(12 posts)

There can only be one...snwbdrhoon
Dec 9, 2002 4:59 PM
I've seen a lot of discussion on pedal selection. Let's hear everyone's thoughts on THE best pedals for cyclocross. ATAC, Eggbeaters, 959, 747?
re: There can only be one...p lo
Dec 9, 2002 6:39 PM
re: There can only be one...atpjunkie
Dec 9, 2002 7:02 PM
I'm not going to slag the eggbeater but I'm a Time guys as well. So are the majority of top pro's (unlesss they are sponsored otherwise) Shimanos clog and won't work in a bog. They are getting better but Times are simple and smooth. Eggs are too! I just happen to like the Time platform. In reality an Eggbeater is a bodyless 4 sided ATAC but they must work quite well.
re: There can only be one...mackgoo
Dec 9, 2002 6:55 PM
I traded my egg beaters in for some Time carbon Titan. I picked them up for 90 bucks on E bay. I like them better, little bigger platform.
opinion of eggbeatersweiwentg
Dec 9, 2002 7:09 PM
great pedal, light, relatively cheap, but small platform. some call them legbeaters. I have hit my shins on them. if I were to smash my shins into the pedals repeatedly, I would be getting carbon ATACs.
admittedly, I haven't tried Times or Shimanos. the Times definitely have more float. if you want lighter, you can get the ti Frogs if it's not too muddy.
opinion time and eggbeatersbuffalosorrow
Dec 10, 2002 4:54 AM
My first cross race I forgot my shoes...doh!

A nice masters rider let me borrow a new pair of eggbeaters and sidi dom 4's, thank you Chris. I liked the eggs, easy to get in and out, float was also fine for me. Although the course was not muddy, I did notice I tended to overstep the engagement, being used to the times.

Following races I have used my times. Last weekend at the New York States, I found my cleats clogging up, not that I could not clip in, but to some extra time... so to speak. Riding a single speed, I was forced to run alot. Luckily I faired well despite the sand and snow mess.

I am condisering replacing the times with eggs to shave some weight, but can not sell the idea to myself. When my times are perfectly functional.
I've used all 4 of the pedals and....(long)SS_MB-7
Dec 10, 2002 5:32 AM
Over the years, I've used all 4 of the pedals you have listed. I first started with 747s, but hated them in the mud and snow, so I bought a set of ATACs 5-yrs ago and kept those until last winter when I bought a pair of Eggs. I had some reliability issues with the Eggs (more info below) and stumbled across a sweet deal on the 959s 2 months ago.

At the time I went to ATACs 5 yrs ago, I was so frustrated with performance of my 747s in mud, snow, ice, etc. that I had to try something new. I was either locked-in or locked-out. ATACs alleviated this. They are easy-in, easy-out no matter the conditions. However, I did have problems with my ATACs.

The inboard bearings on the ATACs (be it the Titans or Carbons) developed side-to-side play very early. Also, I cracked numerous bodies and have also cracked 2 of the cleat clips.

Last winter, I decided to a set of EggBeaters. They are light (283g/pair vs 405g/pair for the ATAC Carbons and 360g/pair for the Titans) and very, very easy to get into and out of. I find them to be the easiest pedal for entry/exit. With 4 sides to enter from, it's a no-brainer -- just slam your foot down and you are in!

Unlike some riders, I have not experienced "hot-spots" from the tiny pedal platform and have no problems with pedaling while not engaged. However, I have had several severe issues with regards to the Eggs....each was quickly warrantied by Crank Bros.

First, I've cracked a pairs of cleats. When it happened, I thought it strange because I was pretty sure I had properly torqued the bolts, so I considered it a fluke. However, after looking closely at the cleat design and the failure, I emailed CB with my findings and they immediately mailed me 2 new pairs of cleats (same design though). In my opinion, the cleat had a design flaw in that it had a space/void/gap on the underside of it such that when the bolts were tightened, the void collapsed and allowed the cleat to deform. After a couple hard rides, the cleats eventually cracked.

So, I installed my new cleats and made sure to properly torque the bolts. The cleats were fine for several months, but wore very quickly (~2 months). Then during a pre-ride before a race, my right pedal completely separated from the spindle. Upon examining the failure, it was apparent that the outboard bearing had completely desintigrated leaving the pedal in two separate pieces: the body and the spindle! Obviously, I missed the race (grrr!) and emailed CB as soon as I got home. They quickly mailed me a new pair of pedals with a re-designed spindle/seal to prevent contamination of the bearing.

These new pedals have been much better than the first, but have started to develop a slight amount of side-to-side play.

Unfortunately, during a night group ride with some buddies, I cracked yet another set of cleats! These cleats failed in the exact same manner as the first (as one would expect since they were the same design and had the same design flaw). I emailed CB yet again and they indicated that they had made some changes to the cleats and quickly sent me 3 new sets of the new cleats. These new cleats are completely flat against the sole of shoe, with the exception of some dots to bite into the sole. I don't expect to have any more cleat problems due to the new design.

Lastly, as of recently, my right shoe has become very, very sloppy on the pedal. From what I can tell, it's attributed to the fact that the EggBeater cleat bars really dig into the base of the sole fore and aft of the cleat....FWIW, ATACs do the same thing. With more riding, these ridges are becoming deeper and deeper. This means that the cleat bars are sitting further and further away from the actual cleat. This is causing excess slop in the interface. To alleviate this, I'm going to install a thin steel plate on the base of the shoe between the cleat and the sole.

This 'cross season, I had an opportunity to test the Eggs and 959s in back-to-back '
I've used all 4 of the pedals and....(part 2)SS_MB-7
Dec 10, 2002 5:36 AM
[for some reason, my post was's part 2]

This 'cross season, I had an opportunity to test the Eggs and 959s in back-to-back 'cross races (a time trial and a race) in some very muddy conditions.

For the 3 warm-up laps and TT, I used the 959s but after jamming them up on the TT, I quickly pulled them off and replaced them with my Eggs for the second race.

Perhaps it was a combination of the slick and sticky mud, leaves and the forced dismounts and running, but I had some severe entry/exit issues with the 959s that forced me back to the Eggs for the second race.

The second race consists of 6 laps on the same course as the TT and the Eggs performed flawlessly despite the mud, leaves, etc. For nasty conditions, the Eggs are hands-down the winner followed by ATACs.

Curiously enough, I noticed several other racers with 959s and each was having similar problems. Unfortunately for them, they didn't have the option of swapping pedals. In fact, during the last race of the season which consisted of lots of snow and mud, I was right behind a Shimano-sponsored rider who was having a very difficult time clipping-in whenever he remounted. I yelled to him "Mike, you gotta get some new pedals!" "I can't....I work for Shimano!" ;)

I really do love the feel of the are definitely in whereas, with the Eggs and ATACs and their large amount of float and lateral movement, your feet sometimes feel vague in the pedal -- not so with the 959s. As one magazine reviewer wrote....this is the best pedal Shimano has made. And I agree. In looking at the 959s vs the 747s, you can truly see an incredible difference in the pedals in terms of mud-shedding abilities, etc. However, they are still not as nice as the Eggs and ATACs in nasty conditions.

In summary, I will keep using the Eggs and 959s, but will be swapping between the 2 when the conditions dictate. For everything but mud and snow, I'll be using the 959s since they are a very nice and secure pedal with 0 entry/exit issues when clean and should be more reliable. However, when things get nasty, you can be assured I'll be using the Eggs.

Ride Hard,
Mike B.
re: Timesrichpierce
Dec 10, 2002 7:48 AM
they work well. nuff said.
Shimano 959sBipedZed
Dec 10, 2002 8:44 AM
I used ATACs for 2 seasons and agree they are the best in adverse conditions. But personally I couldn't get into them fast enough after remounts. Sometimes it would click first try, but more often than not I was fumbling for the pedal.

This season I switched to 959s and the ease of engagement is fantastic, easier for me than ATACs or Eggbeaters. I now find my pedals on the first try almost all the time and can power away from an obstacle section and gain important seconds. The 959s work fine in muddy conditions, but do suffer in mud/snow, but that's more due to my Sidis clogging up than the pedals clogging. For typical CO conditions (dry) the 959s rule. And as someone else mentioned, the 959s feel super solid when clipped in compared to ATACs.
re: There can only be one...morati
Dec 10, 2002 5:56 PM
I used to run 747's but had entry issues with them when conditions got nasty. Then picked up a pair of Titan ATAC's. These were much better in the mud but I couldn't rotate my foot enough to get out of them. Tried shaving the cleats but still didn't like them for this reason. Then picked up a set of the first Eggbeaters which were a little better in the slop then even the Time's, but I had "hot spots" on my foot because of the small platform. Also after using them in some mud races I heard some grit inside them when spinning them to clean. Took them apart to discover water and mud had gotten into the pedals. Finally went to the 959's. Excellent entry and release, large platform and maintenance free. Spray some Pam on them before the race starts and they will not let you down. Have raced and won on these my new favourite pedals.
re: There can only be one...lktool
Dec 13, 2002 10:40 AM
I've used atacs and eggbeaters, and both have strengths and weaknesses, but I think the eggbeaters are the best for 'cross because they are the best at shedding mud and are the easiest to clip into. I also think you should take a look at your shoes. I have a new pair of nikes that have an elliptical shape where the cleat attaches. Easier to clip in, and I didn't have to reach down and scrape the mud from my shoes once this past season.
I found that I like the smaller pedal of the eggbeaters because I can put my arch on the pedal and not worry about slipping. I won't even consider riding without being clipped in, even in the most technical sections. The eggbeaters are so easy to clip in, making them perfect for my riding style.
I had hotspots when I first started riding (a few years ago), but found that as I relaxed my ankle and pulled the pedal through, they dissapeared. Not hot spots since.