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Speedplay Pedals(14 posts)

Speedplay Pedalsnetso
Sep 28, 2001 8:36 AM
I have heard about the wearability factor of speedplay pedals. My experience has been extremely positive. I keep them well lubricated, and clean. They are very easy to engage or disengage. I love the float feature, which has helped my knees greatly. I have had these over 1 year with no problems. What is your experience?
Question for you on climbing and sprintsMick
Sep 28, 2001 8:42 AM
I've read that Speedplays don't do as well as Looks in climbing or sprints because of all the float they have.

That is, if I'm pushing hard in a climb or sprint, the float allows my foot to push at an angle, with less efficiency than a Look pedal which keeps my shoe cemented to the pedal.

Is this your experience?
Too much of a good thing is badLC
Sep 28, 2001 9:02 AM
If you do a lot of miles, especially hills, then the excessive float can hurt tendons in your heel. I know of a couple of people that have had that misfortune happen.
re: Speedplay PedalsTig
Sep 28, 2001 9:49 AM
Sometimes I feel the float getting away from me, but it is simple to correct my peddling form. It's kinda' like when you get sloppy riding, your line wobbles until you clean up your form as if you were on rollers. I've been using these pedals for only a few months but have quickly adapted to the extra float. The real test is during climbing and sprinting. I've managed to do both without much problem. Tuesday's ride ended in a long 53x13 sprint and I didn't even notice any float. I think it is up to the individual's peddling style. I rely on my big calves and tend to keep my heels level throughout the pedal stroke. My knees stay close to the top tube. I've noticed that if I start pointing my toes, the float feels sloppier. The soon to be released Speedplay Zero pedals have adjustable float from 0 to 15 degrees.
re: Speedplay PedalsElefantino
Sep 28, 2001 11:10 AM
If, like me, you are coming from Looks (or SPD, SPD-R, Time), the float at first seems excessive, like you're wearing rubber-soled shoes on an ice rink. At first, I hated them.
But you get used to it. I find that I am actually stronger on hills and in sprints with my Speedplays (X-2s) because I no longer have sore knees and, although I can't verify it, I think the floating actually has strengthened my legs by using more of my muscles. It feels that way to me, as if my riding style has changed.
As for the heel tendon thing, I've never experienced it.
I do know this: I will never go back to any other pedal.
If youre using more muscles, youre using more oxygen,Bas Vanderwahl
Sep 28, 2001 3:18 PM
wouldnt this be less efficient?
That's OK. I have big lungs. (nm)Elefantino
Sep 29, 2001 9:02 PM
re: Very pleasedCliff Oates
Sep 28, 2001 11:45 AM
I just replaced my cleats after 18 months, mainly because the screwdriver slots were nearly worn off of a couple of the screwheads and if I didn't do something soon I'd have to cut them off the shoes. Buy the coffee shop caps for these cleats. I don't find the float to be anything remarkable -- my feet find a natural position on their own and they hold that position of their own accord. As a denizen of Northern California, nearly every ride I go on involves climbing. My ability to climb is not limited by cleats.
re: Speedplay Pedalsnetso
Sep 28, 2001 12:28 PM
I did not like the float at first, however I got used to this very fast. I have not had my heels ache, nor are my knees sore like they used to be. The ease of engagement of these pedals has been a plus. I too would not go back to any other pedal i have used.
re: Speedplay Pedalsmoschika
Sep 28, 2001 1:20 PM
i've had the speedplay road pedals for over a year and have had no problems. they are easy in and easy out. the float doesn't seem excessive at all. most of the time i don't even notice the feel.
i've been using the speedplay frogs for mountainbiking the past 2.5 years, so may be i'm used to the float "feeling". before that i was using clips and straps so i can't compare to haveing the feeling of "locked" in, which to me sounded horrible so that's why i went to speedplays in the first place.
re: Speedplay PedalsChen2
Sep 28, 2001 2:13 PM
Switched from Dura/Ace SPD's to Speedplay X-1's, and I'm glad I did. The float is very nice, took one ride to get use to the pedals and float. My knees feel better during and after riding. I use cleat covers for walking but they tend to come off when walking through gravel.
Sep 28, 2001 2:14 PM
Been riding them for over four years. The unrestricted float took a few hours to get used to. Now they are on all my road bikes.

Re sprints and climbing: When coming out of the saddle coupled with the exaggerated lateral motion of the bike, being able to point your feet at the most comfortable and/or efficient angle relative to the bike is much easier than fighting the centering detent on other pedal systems.

The cleats are just awful to walk around on. As previously mentioned, they don't wear well off the bike so the cleat covers are a worthwhile investment. I usually take off the shoes as soon as I'm off the bike; I'd rather be trashing sox than cleats (at $35 for a replacement set).

I looked at a set of Speedplay Zero pedals (stainless spindles) at the LBS a couple days ago. The float is adjusted on the cleat itself with a screw adjustment, and it's not a self-centering type of mechanism. The adjustment is rather exposed, so stepping on something that could impair the cleat's functionality is a consideration, and they look to be even more susceptible to problems due to mucking up with the usual road grit.

Having said that, I'll give them a trial when the Ti spindle versions show up.
re: Speedplay PedalsBirddog
Sep 28, 2001 8:55 PM
Ditto to all the positives listed above. I've had one set for over 5 years and am half way through using my third set of cleats. I just bought the X1 model for my new bike. I've found that the cleats last me a little over 10,000 miles. It's actually not the miles on the bike, but I don't know how else to guage it other than they last a little over 2 years of year round riding. At $35.00 a pop, that is not much more if at all than what I invested in Look cleats which would last about 2/3 year @ $12.00 a pop. I am going to get the cleat covers however, because there are times when I could and should use them, like on RAGBRAI last year.
one potential problemjacques
Sep 29, 2001 3:27 PM
Speedplays don't release when your heel rotates into the frame, which is great for all-out sprinting. However, in certain crash situations your heel could be pushed forcefully into the frame. No release could result in huge torsional forces acting on your ankle, knee or hip.