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Getting feady to purchase a "real" road pedal, need opinions(25 posts)

Getting feady to purchase a "real" road pedal, need opinionsjoekm
Feb 7, 2003 9:34 AM
Up till recently, I've been using dual-sided spd's and mountain bike shoes for riding. last week, I picked up some Specialized Pro Road bike shoes (last year's model, got a reasonably good deal). Since I'm trying to maintain some semblance of an equipment budget, I'll be getting pedals in March. Here are my choices:

I've all but decided on Speedplay X2's. However, the latch mechanism in the cleat makes them expensive and prone to getting debris in them. Cleat covers would be a must I'd think.

Look pedals appear to have a nice large platform. My concern though is that the large stack height may interfere with cornering. Not that I typically ride that aggresively, but there have been cases when I've done a mid-turn correction at speed and wondered if I was going to strike the pedal on the pavement. If they make a low stack height Look, I think I'd be more interested.

Then there are Time pedals. They seem to have the platform of the Looks with a lower stack height. However, it does not appear that they will attach to my shoes.

Suggestions would be appreciated.


"feady" = "ready"............Oops....(nm)joekm
Feb 7, 2003 9:36 AM
re: Getting feady to purchase a "real" road pedal, need opinionsNo_sprint
Feb 7, 2003 9:39 AM
I've got 396s on all my bikes. I do not recommend them for non-racers though. They are rock solid. I use the black cleat for no float. I'd say the 357 is better suited for a non-racer. Much easier to get in and out of.
I'd say try some Looksfracisco
Feb 7, 2003 9:48 AM
You can start with a PP136 or PP206 (or whatever the entry price equivalent it). They won't be a huge investment, and will get you going. If you like them, and as they wear out, you can either upgrade to a 'nicer' Look pedal, or jump sideways and try the Speedplay.

I would not worry about stack height. If you're not out rubbing elbows in a crit, I think you would find out that you are a lot higher off the ground than you think you are.
If you go Look, get the cleats aligned properly!DoubleK
Feb 7, 2003 1:21 PM
My advice to you, if you get Look pedals (which are a proven design and a good value in most cases) is to have a cleat alignment session done with someone who knows what they are doing and has the RAD pedals as part of the Fit Kit system. They are special padals with indicators to judge proper cleat alignment. This is done while you ride your bike on a stationary trainer. This is very important.

Many people will say things like, "Just look at your feet when you walk and make it like that." This is a half-assed way to do something that is critical to your biomechanical efficiency (not to mention health) on the bike. The red Look ARC cleats are also used in a lot of cases to mask poor cleat alingment. People think their knees love the float because with the black cleats they had knee pain but in a lot of the cases I have seen, it's more likely poor cleat alignment that causes the pain.

I first started cycling with Looks back when they were the only game in town. I, like the hack that I was at the time, just "eyeballed" the cleat alingment. Well, it wasn't long before my left knee was screaming at me so I did a little research and found a former National Team coach who then had a shop nearby. I made an appointment for a bike fitting and spent about 1.5 hours with him. I absolutely could not believe the difference it made. Not just in how my knee felt but I was so much more efficient (i.e. faster) on the bike. It was inclredible. Unfortunetly, he also told me that my frame was at least 1cm too small. Doh!

Anyways, sorry for the rant but you now have a chance to do this right from the start and not to learn the hard way. Yes, when you've been road riding for years you will be able to set your cleats up by feel but not now. Be smart, get an alignment done. Good luck with whatever pedals you decide! (I ride Time Equipe Pros now and have no plans to switch to the new Impact design.)
Good job doublek!!!!!!!!No_sprint
Feb 7, 2003 1:37 PM
I have always thought that any more than a hair of float means you're not adjusted properly as well.
I had cleat alignment performed this week.fracisco
Feb 7, 2003 1:58 PM
I had cleat alignment performed this week using the RAD pedals. I'll go back in a couple of weeks to double check. My foot/pedal interface feels really good right now.
go with TIME! now...yodlebike
Feb 7, 2003 9:51 AM
having said that, i have to admit i'm a little biased. i've ridden Time exclusively for the last 10 years. but maybe that's good. they are easy to get in/out of, comfortable (no hot spots) and practically indestructable.

the new Time pedals (Impact) have a new cleat. they are compatible with all 3 bolt(Look type) shoes. the new Time's finally address, somewhat, the major complaint about Time pedals: they are relatively heavy.

be prepared to pay though, they ain't cheap. but they will probably last you 10 years, so not a bad deal really.
Have you actually ridden the Impacts?joekm
Feb 7, 2003 11:03 AM
Time's website is a little sparse on details. Reviews on RBR tend to say they are hard to clip into but very secure once you are in them.

Still, they look like a viable candidate.
Speedplays are the way to go.triple shot espresso
Feb 7, 2003 9:52 AM
The float is great and it makes set up easier. Getting in and out is really simple. The double sided pedal amkes it easier to get into than the looks and the Times. Sand, dirt and grit are not a problem unless it's really excessive and then they clean up fast. And the cleats don't wear out.
BTW, I tried the others and prefer Speedplay, my 2cents. nmtriple shot espresso
Feb 7, 2003 9:53 AM
often overlooked 206DougSloan
Feb 7, 2003 9:56 AM
I have tried lots and lots of pedals, including Speedplays. I now have 5 sets of Look PP206, a simple, relatively (for Look) light pedal, with decent float and ease of entry/exit.

Check them out:

I wouldn't worry about cornering clearance.

Yep, and unlike more expensive LooksOldEdScott
Feb 7, 2003 10:03 AM
they don't have that maddening squeak.
No squeak on any of my 396s. nmNo_sprint
Feb 7, 2003 10:05 AM
righto--never squeek nmDougSloan
Feb 7, 2003 10:14 AM
how much float with black look cleats? any? nmJS Haiku Shop
Feb 7, 2003 10:33 AM
None with the black cleat.No_sprint
Feb 7, 2003 10:44 AM
Then I set the float knob to 0 or 3, which is virtually un-noticeable. I believe the red cleat offers 6 or 9 degrees right off the bat with the setting on 0. I can't stand it.

I do not like float at all.
on 296s i use black cleats with float set at 9*...JS Haiku Shop
Feb 7, 2003 10:55 AM
it's a noticeable difference between same pedals with red cleats and float set at 0* (as the red cleats are supposed to be automatic 9* float). however, riding red/0* setting feels like i've no control/i'm sliding all over the pedal, but black/9* setting gives a little "wiggle room" without that insecure feeling.

what gives with that?
206 a good callvelocity
Feb 7, 2003 10:53 AM
And don't forget to get Kool Kovers along with the cleats and pedals.
There are a lot of advantages to Look pedalspmf1
Feb 7, 2003 11:03 AM
You should consider them if you're starting out.
1. They're relatively cheap
2. You can get cleats for them anywhere
3. The cleats fit in damn near any type of shoe
4. They have a wide platform
5. They have good level of float

Cornering is about the same for all pedals. Don't worry about it. I use Time pedals mainly because I've used them for years and am used to them. They are similar to Looks, but the cleat is funky and only fits a few types of shoes. The new Time pedals do fit Look drilled shoes, but I'll be3 damned if I'm going to fork out $300 for a set when I have 3 sets of equipe pro ti pedals.
3 sets? hmmm interested in parting with a set?yodlebike
Feb 7, 2003 11:21 AM
or are they all in use?

email -
Caution on getting Speedplays from mountain bike pedalsPODIUMBOUNDdotCA
Feb 7, 2003 1:01 PM
Honestly if your coming from a mountain bike pedal that has a SPD-cleat and limited float I'd caution you with getting Speedplays. Speedplays are great for people with knee problems since the knee aren't fixed into an unnatural position but on the mountain bike you are so you may find your heels being able to move around very unnerving especially switching from road to mountain. On the track and road I began to ride pedals with little or no float so my Time ATAC's drove me to the point where I couldn't even ride my mountain bike anymore until I got Shimano 959's.

Maybe consider the new Shimano pedals. The cleat makes for (relatively) easy walking with raised sections.

Thanks everybody...joekm
Feb 7, 2003 1:59 PM
Lots of good info and suggestions.

I'm imagine I'd eventually get used to the float of the Speedplays but, with the new shoes, I'm starting to notice a pressure point with the SPD's. I suspect I may have the same problem with the Speedplays so that makes them less of an option.

If nothing else, the Looks are cost effective and the cleats are as common as SPD cleats. I should probably give them serious consideration.

At first glance, however, the Time Impacts seem to meet most of my criteria. The big complaint in the review section of RBR being that they are hard to clip into (although very stable once that is accomplished). I'd have to say that these are the current "front runner".

I'll look into getting the cleats aligned at my LBS as well.

Thanks again all,

well if you're gonna get themEpicX
Feb 7, 2003 4:02 PM
if you end up getting the time impact, Total Cycling has the Ti/Mag for just $220 (shipping included i think). For comparison, these are $334 at Colorado Cyclist

i think i may have to order some. that's too good of a deal to pass up.
well if you're gonna get themjoekm
Feb 7, 2003 7:09 PM
Actually, the aluminum body pedals will be sufficient and I don't entirely trust titanium for a spindle material. The durability of stainless is worth a few extra grams to me.

Besides, the aluminum Impacts compare well to the Look pedals in weight anyways.

That should make their price comparable to the Speedplays.

Actually, looking at the Total Cycling website, the price is even better.

hmmm....I wonder what overseas shipping cost is.....

Now that I think about it, I suppose what I should have said is that I pedal so fast that I'm afraid that magnesium pedals would catch fire due to frictional heating ;)