SPDs or SPD-SLs?

gabriel959 Posts: 4,227
edited July 2009 in Road buying advice
Hey guys,

I have been a long term user of SPDs now (15 months) and find them comfortable and easy to clip in and out but now that I am getting a new bike (Sabbath Silk Road) I am wondering on what to do?

1.)Should I stick with SPD pedals (and therefore save some money on shoes) and just buy some SPD touring pedals? At the moment I have got SPD M520 on my Giant. I find them ok for commuting but sometimes I feel that they don’t let me go as fast as I could so I was thinking on something slightly more up-market like these http://www.wiggle.co.uk/p/cycle/7/Shima ... 360027292/

2.)On the other hand I could go and get myself some SPD-SL pedals (probably the entry level ones 540R from Shimano) and some new SPD-SL shoes but have got concerns about walking with them and cleat durability.

Seeing as my main activity for this bike will be Sunday Club Runs (60mile +). What do you recommend?

Commuting / Winter rides - Jamis Renegade Expert
Pootling / Offroad - All-City Macho Man Disc
Fast rides Cannondale SuperSix Ultegra


  • Shaggy_Dog
    Shaggy_Dog Posts: 688
    Stick with the SPD's Don't even bother with A520's. The only advantage they give is cosmetic.
    I had to beat them to death with their own shoes...
    HiFi Pro Carbon '09

    LTS DH '96

    The Mighty Dyna-Sore - The 90's?
  • zoglug
    zoglug Posts: 212
    Im about to invest in pedals and shoes, and have pretty much decided to go the SPD route. Reason being, i commute to work and need to be able to walk reasonably well in the shoes once i arrive in work, but something thats sturdy enough to provide some stiffness on my longer rides.

    Going with these pedals and im off to Harry Halls soon to try these shoes to see how they fit and how good they are for walking in.
  • kingrollo
    kingrollo Posts: 3,198
    I disagree with the previous poster - I have found spd-sl a massive improvement over spd's - if you can handle the fact that it isn't as easy to click in - I would definitley go SPD-SL
  • gabriel959
    gabriel959 Posts: 4,227
    Thanks everyone for their comments!!!

    Shaggy_Dog - cheers about that, I will stay clear of the A520s!!!

    Zoglug - I currentlty have exactly the same configuration you are about to buy. I find it excellent for commuting and definitely quite good for long rides but I am looking for something slightly better for my new Ti bike.

    kingrollo - I can cope with the fact that it won't be easy to clip in as I am not going to be involved very often in heavy traffic situations.
    Commuting / Winter rides - Jamis Renegade Expert
    Pootling / Offroad - All-City Macho Man Disc
    Fast rides Cannondale SuperSix Ultegra
  • absolute
    absolute Posts: 2
    All depends on the miles you do. If you ride long distance go for spd-sl as the cleat has a wider fit on your shoes. So far more comfortable. The spd has a very small fit which after some miles can start to hurt your feet.
  • bing gordon
    bing gordon Posts: 662
    i was in the same boat , the SPD's are practical and the look keo's sometimes were a nightmare clipping in/out in traffic.
    i only use the look keo's for long early sat, sunday morning rides but i must say the keo's are far more comfortable than the SPD's but the SPD's win for stop/start- in/out city traffic.