Cleats - whats that about then?

General cycling advice ( NOT technical ! )
mercalia
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Re: Cleats - whats that about then?

Postby mercalia » 8 Dec 2013, 5:32pm

I wonder if falling off a mtb with spds is the same as being hit by a car/bus. doubt it.I suspect for one thing that collisions happen far faster than in mtb tumbles. I dont want to find out either. its not as if clipless dont need adjusting to get them to work proper? I dont use toe clips either. it would be interesting if any one knows any research on this matter.
Last edited by mercalia on 8 Dec 2013, 6:08pm, edited 1 time in total.

Mike Sales
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Re: Cleats - whats that about then?

Postby Mike Sales » 8 Dec 2013, 5:44pm

Si wrote:
Nope, totally wrong. In a crash you don't need to think about unclipping - it just happens by itself. Think about it for a bit - who were the first set of cyclists to use SPDs? Yep, MTBers. Who crash all the time? Yep, MTBers....so if people were getting stuck to their bikes due to using SPDs don't you think that MTBers would have given up with them ages ago? But, guess what...they haven't! That's because they know that in a crash they will get unclipped...indeed, in my experience, you are more likely to unclip from a SPD than you are to get out of a traditional clip and strap.

Sounds to me like you've not actually done much riding or crashing with SPDs - you'd have a much better idea about them if you did (the riding that is - I'm not wishing you to crash).


I quite agree about crashing. You don't need to think about unclipping in a crash.
I disagree about MTB riders being the first. My recollection is that it was road riders using Look pedals, in the Look team.

coast 2 coast
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Re: Cleats - whats that about then?

Postby coast 2 coast » 8 Dec 2013, 5:50pm

mercalia wrote:there is another issue that is worth noting considering the spate of ( urban )deaths. They are just not safe to use in an urban situation.


With all things on this board, unless otherwise stated, I always assume we are talking about cycle touring. Not mountain biking, BMXing, commuting, track racing etc. But since you have raised a concern about the safety of SPDs in urban environments, I simply have to respond, pedals are the one of the least significant items to discuss in that situation. You may as well be talking about choice of shorts over trousers for safety preferences, while urban cycling. You un-clip pretty much instantaneously with SPDs, which is a great deal faster and safer than clips and straps. Which is precisely why mountain bikers, who have a much greater chance of spills and unscheduled dismounts, than your average cyclist, took to them so quickly.

mercalia
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Re: Cleats - whats that about then?

Postby mercalia » 8 Dec 2013, 6:26pm

well I am an urban tourist mainly. maybe coast-2-coast you wouldnt mind me side swiping you with my car to see if your cleats release well? I did a bit of googling, many happy users, quite a few incidents, many with new users, some issues about not adjusting the tension properly ( whats the correct tension ? ), a case where shoe left on pedal and foot out of shoe,another just one cleat releasing the other not. some attributed accidents, one very bad. I also read that seems that re mtb with harder technical sections that clipless out of favour, if I got it right. I just ride flats, am not concerned with max efficiency and like to keep things simple. Any mechanical device will not work well under some circumstance or other, rather you than me.

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mjr
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Re: Cleats - whats that about then?

Postby mjr » 8 Dec 2013, 7:08pm

If you unclip from SPD so easily, why have I seen users - both new and old, but admittedly more new - fall over onto their sides, still clipped in, when they could have stopped the fall with a simple foot down? Bad adjustment?
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Mick F
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Re: Cleats - whats that about then?

Postby Mick F » 8 Dec 2013, 7:31pm

I fell over many times with clips because I didn't loosen the straps prior to stopping. :oops:

Clipless OTOH you can unclip even during a track-stand!
Just a flick with the ankle, and you're out.

Anyone who falls over, just hasn't got the knack yet.
All it takes is knowledge and a little practice.
Mick F. Cornwall

mercalia
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Re: Cleats - whats that about then?

Postby mercalia » 8 Dec 2013, 7:43pm

ok but the opinion being expressed here that is you auto disconnect if in an accident - seems like not as noobs dont when they fall over?

Brucey
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Re: Cleats - whats that about then?

Postby Brucey » 8 Dec 2013, 7:50pm

overall I think they are a very good thing.

Best to start off with them set very slack. Most newbies do topple once or twice; about a week or two in when you think you have got it, you can get distracted and forget.

When MTBing you come out but often not until you are having an accident.

I rode 20 years with clips and straps before converting to SPDs and (because the release is different with SPDs) I toppled with those, too.

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[XAP]Bob
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Re: Cleats - whats that about then?

Postby [XAP]Bob » 8 Dec 2013, 7:53pm

mercalia wrote:ok but the opinion being expressed here that is you auto disconnect if in an accident - seems like not as noobs dont when they fall over?

You auto disconnect in an accident because your ankle gets twisted by the accident - cf+ ski bindings.

Of course as you get used to them you clip out even before that. When you are "having a clipless moment" is normally at a standstill (setting off an a chain slip is what caused mine, others have had them at lights) - that's when you try to move your foot rather than twist it - and that is normally only done once (or twice, when you are feeling cocky)
A shortcut has to be a challenge, otherwise it would just be the way. No situation is so dire that panic cannot make it worse.
There are two kinds of people in this world: those can extrapolate from incomplete data.

Mike Sales
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Re: Cleats - whats that about then?

Postby Mike Sales » 8 Dec 2013, 7:56pm

mercalia wrote:ok but the opinion being expressed here that is you auto disconnect if in an accident - seems like not as noobs dont when they fall over?


In an earlier post you asked.
Not if you have an accident, you will go where the bike goes and probably get into a real tangle. I

The answer was that you will become easily detached in a fall. You do not go where the bike goes.
I guess that not being able to get your foot out when you stop is your fear. In practice the small twist of the heel needed for release becomes second nature very quickly. If you are moving when you fall your feet will comeout.
If you don't want to use clipless, then fair enough.

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NUKe
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Re: Cleats - whats that about then?

Postby NUKe » 8 Dec 2013, 8:00pm

Although a convert to SPD's, I dont remember clips and straps being a problem. only when racing did I every fully strap up, any other time the left strap was always left just slack enough that you could rip your foot out in a hurry. I would say the main advantage of SPD is that you dont have the faff of trying to do up the strap. I doubt they are any more efficent pedaling wise. I have one bike with SPD And one with flats And I would say unless your riding fast, the advantages of SPD's are minimal
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Si
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Re: Cleats - whats that about then?

Postby Si » 8 Dec 2013, 8:12pm

mercalia wrote:ok but the opinion being expressed here that is you auto disconnect if in an accident - seems like not as noobs dont when they fall over?


You are discussing two different things. The "clipless moment" isn't down to having an accident - it's down to some one not used to clipless pedals trying to get out, panicking and remaining in the pedal as they slowly fall over. If you have clipless moments once you have gotten the knack for using them (doesn't take long) then I'd say that it's more down to the user than the pedal.

In a crash, where the impact comes before any purposeful attempt to disengage, you will find that your feet come out before you even think about getting them out - thus you don't get the panicky "clipless moment" as suffered by newcomers when stopping.

I really would urge you to actually get some proper experience and understanding of using them before you start giving advice to others on their pros and cons.

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Mick F
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Re: Cleats - whats that about then?

Postby Mick F » 8 Dec 2013, 8:20pm

The thing is, I used clips and straps for many years. I used trainers at first, and they were terrible for gripping tight when the straps were done up.

Later, I used cycling shoes with hard flat soles, so they slipped out easier, but still later I used shoes with cleats that had a slot that located with the rear plate of the pedal. The strap fixed you in and your foot was locked solid into position. If you failed to loosen the strap at least on one side before you stopped, you'd fall embarrassingly. I did that many times. :lol:

It was bad enough with trainers, but shoes and cleats were devilish. :shock:

Contrast that with clipless.
As I said before, you can flick an ankle and you're out. Even during a trackstand. In an accident, you just flick out just the same.

Absolutely second nature and so much easier and simpler than clips and straps.
Mick F. Cornwall

coast 2 coast
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Re: Cleats - whats that about then?

Postby coast 2 coast » 8 Dec 2013, 8:45pm

mercalia wrote: maybe coast-2-coast you wouldnt mind me side swiping you with my car to see if your cleats release well? .


Nice. If you try that, just be sure for you own safety, I can't stand up after. Maybe you think most people think like you, which is why you see the urban cycling environment to be such a dangerous place. Most people I know, don't think to drive deliberately into cyclists.

mercalia wrote:I did a bit of googling,


Because you have no personal first hand experience from which to draw on. It is a shame that you feel like dispensing advice from such a position of ignorance. Not only that but you decide to arm yourself with the most negative reports you could find." If you had been fair minded and Googled, "SPDs", instead of Googling "SPD problems and accidents", you may have found a more reasonable and balanced account that reflects the reality, rather than your ill founded prejudices.

.

coast 2 coast
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Re: Cleats - whats that about then?

Postby coast 2 coast » 8 Dec 2013, 8:50pm

mjr wrote:If you unclip from SPD so easily, why have I seen users - both new and old, but admittedly more new - fall over onto their sides, still clipped in, when they could have stopped the fall with a simple foot down? Bad adjustment?


Who knows? Worn cleats, poorly set cleats, absent mindedness, poorly serviced pedals, wrong spring tension?????? I really do tire when speculating over the inadequacies and in-competencies of unknown others. Having the right kit does not make you a better cyclist. But better kit can improve the cycling experience of those with the wit, will and desire to appreciate it.