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Pedals (Another Newbie Question)(5 posts)

Pedals (Another Newbie Question)EOWilson
Jun 2, 2002 6:43 AM
Which pedal is more efficient (transfers power better from foot to pedal) .... toe clip pedals or toe-in pedals? Is one more comfortable than the other? I will be riding road bikes on century's and triathlons.
Jun 2, 2002 7:37 AM
Pedals with a cage attached that have straps that secure your foot by tightening the strap are old-fashioned. You don't want these.

Modern clipless pedals have mechanical retention and rely on a cleat that stays permanently attached to the bottom of your cycling shoe. This you want.

Deciding on types is difficult for some. There are Looks, Time, Speedplays, Shimano SPD's, Campagnolo, and several other makers.

All the above offer the most efficiency possible. Comfort comes mostly from the quality of shoe and fit. Some float or give in the cleat/pedal interface is necessary so your ankles and knees aren't locked into a less than perfect position that develops into injury.
re: Pedals (Another Newbie Question)JOM
Jun 2, 2002 2:15 PM
Dear Newbie,
Forget the straps and immediately buy a set of Speedplay X3's (or a higher model if you prefer). They are very light, easy to get out of, and provide the most freedom for your knees. After riding everything from straps, Time, Look, and Shimano, all of my bikes now have SpeedPlays.
As a track racer my take on this...PODIUMBOUNDdotCA
Jun 2, 2002 2:57 PM
I'm a track racer and have used both clips and straps (toe clip pedals) and clipless pedals. Both have their advantages and disadvantages.

Toe clips are great to keep your foot securely in the pedal but if you tighten them up as much as I do which would be unlikely since I'm a sprinter... you'll break straps. And the worst part about clips and straps is they are hard enough to get out of with regular shoes let alone cycling specific shoes with a cleat that slots into the pedal. Basically if you ever bail... your in trouble. Then if your scared of this and undertighten the straps you can't pull up as efficiently as you should. Which for a little ways won't hurt you but over a long distance it will rob a lot of energy.

So my vote is for clipless pedals. I'm a fan of the new Shimano SPD-R pedals. The new generation with the teflon coated claw are silky smooth to get in and out of and have a wide variety of adjustment for release tension. Paired with Shimano shoes they have almost no height difference between your foot and the axle spinkle which is very important 1) for comfort and 2) for power transfer which over the course of a triatholon or century can save you minutes.

Nick and supporter of Shimano pedals and shoes
re: Pedals (Another Newbie Question)raboboy
Jun 3, 2002 6:54 AM
Also, depending on where you ride, and what you are planning on doing, you might also consider Mountain Bike shoes & pedals. Road shoes have NO tread. So, if you plan on doing some walking on your rides (ie, going into a store, coffee-shop, etc.) i'd reccommend MTB shoes & pedals. Besides regular riding, I try to do all my errands & whatnot on my bike and they have come in handy. I have Time ATAC and have found them sturdy, very easy to clip into and out of, with plenty of float. Also, all MTB pedals are double-sided so it doesn't matter which side you clip into making it all that much easier.

Just something to consider.