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Shimano SPD-SL test ride! (cross-post from Component)(1 post)

Shimano SPD-SL test ride! (cross-post from Component)TrekFurthur
Dec 11, 2002 7:05 AM
This board seems to get a little more traffic, so here ya go.

Yep, I got 'em last night. The Lance pedal--because, of course, they'll make me faster. Okay, enough with the funnies.

The pedal feels quite light in the hand; did not have a digital scale to put 'em on, but we're working on that. Installation onto the bike was easy enough with an 8mm hex wrench. Also, there's a nice flat at the end of the pedal threads where the pedal contacts the crank arm; I assume this flat is to help protect the arm from torquing on the pedal--very thoughtful.

The cleat is a HARD plastic, not like the softer plastic of the Look cleat (which WILL NOT WORK, btw); hopefully, then the Big S cleat won't creak or squeak (the pedal design seems to combat this also with a black, composite pad where the cleat contacts the pedal body) and should last longer, too. Another caveat, Look Kool Kovers will not fit either, but the Big S cleat features three yellow pads (red if you get the non-float version) to help protect the cleat when walking and to keep it from being too slippery; they also function as wear indicators--when the yellow (or red) goes away, replace.

Okay, the ride. Very low stack height compared to Looks; lowered the saddle a few mm and will have to lower more (maybe comparable to Speedplay). The feel in the pedal is similar to Looks--very solid and stable, with lots of foot support. There is an acceptable amount of float and cleat tension is adjustable. However, even in the lowest position, foot release is very positive (meaning it takes a good amount of pressure to release your foot; I'd compare it to Time ATACS and Eggbeaters, and add for the true roadies that it's more than what a Look requires. Speedplay folks may fall over ;)) It only took a few minutes to adjust to clipping in (very easy) and out, and experienced riders won't have a problem.

I've only had an "around-the-block" test and 30 minutes on the trainer, so I post again after this weekend's ride, but so far so good.