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SPD vs LOOK STYLE?????(5 posts)

SPD vs LOOK STYLE?????cjwill
Apr 23, 2003 12:28 PM
I just started road riding on a trek 1000 (2002) bike is totally stock. I have put some low end SPD pedals on the bike. but i am looking at my first set of "LOOK" (337)pedals.

Is one more stable then the other? which do you perfer? Why?

Thank you for your input. :-D
re: SPD vs LOOK STYLE?????Steve Bailey
Apr 23, 2003 12:43 PM

- Pro's:

- Stable platform with good sole support
- Easy entry/release
- OK float, though they have a bit of spring tension

- Cons:

- Single sided entry
- Pain to walk around in plastic cleats, slippery, awkward
- Cleats wear faster
- The dreaded Look squeek


- Pros

- Double sided entry
- Compatable with other SPD shoes and pedals (generally)
- Easy to walk around in
- Decent float, depending on cleat type
- Cheaper then the 357 Looks, yet just as light and functionable.

- Cons

- Less support in sole area, best to use a good stiff racing style mt. bike shoe with a stiff sole that makes good contact with the pedal platform, not rely-ing on the cleat for support, all to avoid "Hot Foot" syndrome.

I have 5 pairs of SPD style pedals on: 1 - Mt. Bike, 1 - tourer, 2 road bikes and 1 - recumbent. Thus I can swap any of my 3 pairs of shoes (Big winter shoes, stiff/lighter road use shoes and general commuting shoes) with any pedal/bike. Makes life much easier. By choosing a stiff Shimano racing SPD shoe I don't get hot foot when doing long road rides on hot days in summer. FWIW, I used to use both Look pedals (thus the dreaded squeek) and Ultegra road pedals and have finally gone over to Mt. SPD style all around.

Steve B.
some questions:colker
Apr 23, 2003 1:01 PM
what spd's do you use? does it make a lot of diferrence if use a sidi mtb shoe or a road shoe?
i'm on time atacs and can't decide to switch to road style pedlas.
i do a lot of commuting on my bike but like the ocasional 4hr long ride. i don't get hot foot but the times in my biike are old and give me huge q factor, which i don't like..
some questions:Steve Bailey
Apr 24, 2003 9:17 AM
"what spd's do you use?

Pedals - all Shimano unless noted

- 737's original SPUDS, purchased very used, on the recumbent.
- 535's, original LX SPUDS, 12 years old ?, on my commuter
- 2 pair of 515's, used on the Heron and Klein road bikes.
- Nashbar NR-PDL's, $25 models, used on the Mt. Bike, 8 years old ?.


- Shimano SM82's, rigid mt. shoes
- Shimao SM37's, commuters
- Specialized Ground Control's, winter as they're a size large

Assorted Shimano 51 and 71 cleats as well as the original Nashbar cleats. I have no idea what cleat is on what shoe any more as they all work on all pedals. Note that this is not as per Shimano spec's and I've read much from folks who say that they have release/entry issues when not following standard. I don't race and can keep the pedal tension low enough to not have issues with mix/matched cleats. The Nashbar pedals are a steal, IMHO. They cost $25 8 years ago and seemingly last a long time, though the mt. bike is my least used bike.

"does it make a lot of diferrence if use a sidi mtb shoe or a road shoe? ".

Yes. A road shoe, having a stiff, flat plastic sole and the 2 bolt SPD hole pattern will not have lugs that sit on the SPD pedal adjacent to the binding, as will a true mt. bike shoe. Not having that lug interface on the pedal will lead to discomfort as all the pressure of the sole is on that tiny SPD cleat. Getting a good interface is critical and using a stiff soled shoe for long distance road riding is also critical.

Steve Bailey
re: SPD vs LOOK STYLE?????The Human G-Nome
Apr 23, 2003 1:23 PM

if you're swithching from MTB to road, use SPD.
if you walk A LOT, use SPD.

otherwise, use Look. not all are the same, however. lots of folks seem to love the 206s, but i think they're horrible. honestly, the 396s are the best pedals i've ever used. the easy of entry between them and the 206s is night/day. if you haven't already bought road shoes, go to and take advantage of their Sidi Energy/396 special. you can't beat that deal anywhere.