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Clipless pedals: Time ATAC vs SPD

pw1brownpw1brown Posts: 243
edited October 2008 in Commuting chat
I'm just in the process of going clipless. Can anyone advise on the actual differences in using Time ATAC vs Shimano SPD pedals for commuting? Preferably someone who has used both?

Thanks

Posts

  • ChrisLSChrisLS Posts: 2,749
    ...never had any problems with SPD's, huge variety of pedals and shoes...sorry I have never used Time so can't comment...
    ...all the way...'til the wheels fall off and burn...
  • Mike HealeyMike Healey Posts: 1,023
    ATACs excellent, better mud clearance than SPDs, no adjustments to make, except alternative fitting for cleat.

    Easy to clip in/out of, cleats last longer (anecdotal), more float and also some sideways movement which helps if you've got minor knee problems
    Organising the Bradford Kids Saturday Bike Club at the Richard Dunn Sports Centre since 1998
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  • belgiangothbelgiangoth Posts: 2,849
    (I assume you are talking about MTB pedals and not Race pedals. If you are not racing, then use the double-sided MTB pedals).
    I started on Shimano SPDs as they were the cheapest available. They are simple to use and a good starter for going clipless.
    I have since switched to time ATACs, which I preffer. The advantage is that they lock more firmly without being harder to uncllip from (with SPDs the tighter you set them the harder they are to unclip) have more float (better for your knees) and require less maintanence (and they are newer too). I do find that I have to stomp harder to clip in to the ATACs than I do with the SPDs tho.
  • pw1brownpw1brown Posts: 243
    Thanks for the advice. Yes, I think I'll go double-sided, as I'm a beginner. My knees happen to be a bit dodgy, so I'm leaning towards the ATACs. On the other hand, I won't turn down a Shimano at a good price, and they seem to have a lot more choice.
  • omegasomegas Posts: 970
    Shimano is a good pedal to learn with as you can slacken off the mechanism in the pedal so you disengage very easy and will even release with a hard pull upwards on the soft setting.

    Try something like a MT30 Shimano shoe £28 (not a great winter shoe)

    http://www.chainreactioncycles.com/Mode ... delID=7612

    and Shimano 424 pedal £25

    http://www.chainreactioncycles.com/Mode ... delID=7808

    (which has a platform around)

    Small outlay to start with, has loads of float and less chance of falling off while you get used to them.

    Not many people go back to flat pedals when you have used clipless and see the increased efficiency when pedalling.

    An important point is if your buying shoes on line, sizing between the different manufactures vary greatly, Shimano shoes are very small (I am size 45 (11) and have a size 47)
  • (I seem to keep hijacking other people's threads - apologies, but it's kinda related).

    I've got Shimano 424 pedals and they're a good cheap beginner SPD pedal. If it's of any interest I have Specialized Taho Shoes:

    http://bicycleswest.com/itemdetails.cfm?catalogId=39&id=2827

    they're my first cycling shoewhich I love...and I'm very hard to please with shoe-buying of any sort!!!

    But to my questions...

    There's another thread on here about someone who got pulled over for not having pedal reflectors, and it seems that this is a legal requirement:

    http://www.bikeradar.com/forum/viewtopic.php?t=12550214

    So:

    1) Does anyone know where I can get reflectors for Shimano caged pedals like the 424? The shop I bought them from didn't have them.
    2) How can we be legal if we have uncaged SPD pedals which can't fit reflectors?

    MR
  • PlaxPlax Posts: 33
    I've just bought some of these;
    http://cgi.ebay.co.uk/Shimano-324-SPD-P ... dZViewItem
    clipless on one side and normal on the other.
    I've fitted them on the bike (they came with cleats and I have a pair of Shimano SPD shoes), and had a go at trying to clip and unclip in them. I'm having difficulty in getting them locked in though. I'm quite happy at twisting my foot to get out of them, but takes me ages to get my foot in them. Any kind of special technique to it - like the angle of the pedals?
  • pw1brownpw1brown Posts: 243
    Thanks for all the advice folks. I hoped to try Time ATACs, but there were loads of SPDs on eBay, so I've gone for them instead. We'll see how I get on.
  • clantonclanton Posts: 1,287
    (I seem to keep hijacking other people's threads - apologies, but it's kinda related).

    I've got Shimano 424 pedals and they're a good cheap beginner SPD pedal. If it's of any interest I have Specialized Taho Shoes:

    http://bicycleswest.com/itemdetails.cfm?catalogId=39&id=2827

    they're my first cycling shoewhich I love...and I'm very hard to please with shoe-buying of any sort!!!

    But to my questions...

    There's another thread on here about someone who got pulled over for not having pedal reflectors, and it seems that this is a legal requirement:

    http://www.bikeradar.com/forum/viewtopic.php?t=12550214

    So:

    1) Does anyone know where I can get reflectors for Shimano caged pedals like the 424? The shop I bought them from didn't have them.
    2) How can we be legal if we have uncaged SPD pedals which can't fit reflectors?

    MR

    I wear yellow reflective strips around my ankles when commuting at night (or if my night ride covers a road section). I have Time pedals and no way of mounting reflectors to them so this is an attempt to obey the spirit of the law if not the actual letter! Not sure if it would stand up in any legal challenge though.
    They do work very well at making you more visible though and are IMHO much more effctive than pedal refectors.
  • alfabluealfablue Posts: 8,497
    (2) How can we be legal if we have uncaged SPD pedals which can't fit reflectors?

    MR

    Uncaged SPD's can have reflectors, my M520's came with these SM-PD22 reflector inserts:

    spd.jpg

    They clip on to one side, unfortunately it also converts a two sided spd to a single sided one!

    These reflectors should be available as a spare part, though I'm not sure where, however SJS sell these cheap spd's with them

    spd2.jpg
  • I think SPDs are VHS to ATACs Betamax, if that makes any sense :-).

    I use SPDs, they are cheap and plentyful, and I have never had any problems with them or my knees.

    As for "Egg Beaters" just don't bother, a gimic that has run it's course.

    The reflector issue: is this really a problem? surely if you have lights you are legal.
    If you see the candle as flame, the meal is already cooked.
    Photography, Google Earth, Route 30
  • Plax wrote:
    I've just bought some of these;
    http://cgi.ebay.co.uk/Shimano-324-SPD-P ... dZViewItem
    clipless on one side and normal on the other.
    I've fitted them on the bike (they came with cleats and I have a pair of Shimano SPD shoes), and had a go at trying to clip and unclip in them. I'm having difficulty in getting them locked in though. I'm quite happy at twisting my foot to get out of them, but takes me ages to get my foot in them. Any kind of special technique to it - like the angle of the pedals?
    I have some similar pedals on my hybrid (Decathlon knock-offs of the ones you have) and I sometimes have trouble clipping in also - sometimes it's immediate, other times I've ridden half a mile before the poxy things clip! I've found the easiest way is just to get them the right way up, pedal and not worry about it. They clip in eventually...

    I don't have this problem with the uncaged pedals on my other bike so I assume it's something to do with the cage. Unfortunately I can't fit uncaged to the hybrid as my son sometimes uses it and he doesn't do clipless! :?
    Even if the voices aren't real, they have some very good ideas.
  • alfabluealfablue Posts: 8,497
    The reflector issue: is this really a problem? surely if you have lights you are legal.

    Unfortunately pedal reflectors (BS approved ones) are a legal requirement in addition to lights (BS approved if they have a steady state), as is a BS rear reflector (may be included in the BS rear light). I think this is a legal problem rather than a practical problem if you are well illuminated, though I can see that the particular appearance of flashing pedal reflectors is distinctively "bike". Personally, I really want to be legal, but I am unwilling to turn my two sided SPD's into single sided ones by fitting the reflector inserts.
  • alfabluealfablue Posts: 8,497
    Shadowduck wrote:
    I have some similar pedals on my hybrid (Decathlon knock-offs of the ones you have) and I sometimes have trouble clipping in also - sometimes it's immediate, other times I've ridden half a mile before the poxy things clip! I've found the easiest way is just to get them the right way up, pedal and not worry about it. They clip in eventually...

    I don't have this problem with the uncaged pedals on my other bike so I assume it's something to do with the cage. Unfortunately I can't fit uncaged to the hybrid as my son sometimes uses it and he doesn't do clipless! :?

    Possibly genuine SPD's will clip in more sweetly.
  • alfablue wrote:
    Possibly genuine SPD's will clip in more sweetly.
    Maybe, though I suspect the problem is more with the cage making it difficult to feel my way into the clips as I do with the uncaged ones. I've given some thought to weighting them so they hang clip side up (but haven't got round to it yet), that'll probably help.
    Even if the voices aren't real, they have some very good ideas.
  • alfabluealfablue Posts: 8,497
    Shadowduck wrote:
    alfablue wrote:
    Possibly genuine SPD's will clip in more sweetly.
    Maybe, though I suspect the problem is more with the cage making it difficult to feel my way into the clips as I do with the uncaged ones. I've given some thought to weighting them so they hang clip side up (but haven't got round to it yet), that'll probably help.
    This clip-side up thing is why I only use double-sided ones now, much easier to use.
  • alfablue wrote:
    This clip-side up thing is why I only use double-sided ones now, much easier to use.
    Thankfully my "normal" pedals are double sided - I couldn't find any dual-use (SPD and flat) ones that were also double sided. Maybe I should give the lad a pair of flats and a pedal spanner! :lol:
    Even if the voices aren't real, they have some very good ideas.
  • ajotenajoten Posts: 321
    Any idea where one can buy these adapters on their own without pedals?
    alfablue wrote:
    Uncaged SPD's can have reflectors, my M520's came with these SM-PD22 reflector inserts:

    spd.jpg
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  • cougiecougie Posts: 22,512
    I wouldnt bother too much getting reflectors. Spend the money on two Smart 0.5 Watt rear lights and a decent front light too. I've never heard of anyone being prosecuted for not having reflectors ?

    (and its a bit unfair to call Atac - Betamax - as far as I can see Atacs are still going strong ?)
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