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spd's Vs spd-sl's

nick1972nick1972 Posts: 144
edited May 2013 in Road beginners
Im currently riding Spd's but thinking of changing to spd-sl's. Can someone tell me pro, cons of changing.

Cheers

Posts

  • prawnyprawny Posts: 5,421
    Pro's

    Look more Pro, better choice of shoes, slightly more stabe pedalling platform

    Cons

    Cost's money to change, cleats wear faster, can't walk like a human in SLs, No huge benefit in pedalling.

    I swapped over the winter. Not sure it was worth it in all honesty, but my silver shoes do make me look rather fetching on a Saturday morning 8) but I'm dreading the day I have a mechanical and have to walk any sort of distance.

    If you're purely road riding I think you can pay your money and make your choice, if you do any commuting/riding in built up areas I'd stay with SPDs over SLs purely for the cleat wear issue.
    Saracen Tenet 3 - 2015 - Dead - Replaced with a Hack Frame
    Voodoo Bizango - 2014 - Dead - Hit by a car
    Vitus Sentier VRS - 2017
  • slowbikeslowbike Posts: 8,498
    cons - cost.


    q1 - why do you want to change?
    q2 - are your current pedals/shoes in need of replacement?
  • nick1972nick1972 Posts: 144
    Slowbike wrote:
    cons - cost.


    q1 - why do you want to change?
    q2 - are your current pedals/shoes in need of replacement?

    My shoes are looking a bit tired and need upgrading. Ive been looking around and prefer the look of road shoes. Walking isn't an issue ( unless I have a mechanical).
  • prawnyprawny Posts: 5,421
    Why not give it a whirl then?

    You could always get shoes that will take SPD cleats as well, if it doesn't work out you've only lost the cost of the pedals then.

    EDIT:

    There's always the touring shoe option as well these days. They do look a bit 'Dawes Galaxy' though.
    Saracen Tenet 3 - 2015 - Dead - Replaced with a Hack Frame
    Voodoo Bizango - 2014 - Dead - Hit by a car
    Vitus Sentier VRS - 2017
  • iPeteiPete Posts: 6,076
    Greater availability of stiffer shoes, about the only pro I've found.
  • slowbikeslowbike Posts: 8,498
    Nick1972 wrote:
    Slowbike wrote:
    cons - cost.


    q1 - why do you want to change?
    q2 - are your current pedals/shoes in need of replacement?

    My shoes are looking a bit tired and need upgrading. Ive been looking around and prefer the look of road shoes. Walking isn't an issue ( unless I have a mechanical).

    As the pedals are not overly expensive and you're needing to replace the shoes then why not go for the change.
  • BobbinogsBobbinogs Posts: 4,841
    I think there are some decent looking SPD shoes. I have the 2013 Specialized BG Experts. They look good (to me), are good for walking at cafes and around the house, etc. (although I wouldn't want to hike too far) and they have a very stiff carbon sole (so no hotspots, etc.).

    Matched with SPD M540s they make a very good combo, IME.
  • prawnyprawny Posts: 5,421
    iPete wrote:
    Greater availability of bling shoes, about the only pro I've found.

    FTFY :wink:
    Saracen Tenet 3 - 2015 - Dead - Replaced with a Hack Frame
    Voodoo Bizango - 2014 - Dead - Hit by a car
    Vitus Sentier VRS - 2017
  • slowbikeslowbike Posts: 8,498
    prawny wrote:
    Look more Pro

    That's got to be one of the worst reasons to change!

    I'd rather ride around in civies if it meant I could clean up on strava segments!
  • prawnyprawny Posts: 5,421
    Slowbike wrote:
    prawny wrote:
    Look more Pro

    That's got to be one of the worst reasons to change!

    I'd rather ride around in civies if it meant I could clean up on strava segments!

    But, but, but

    G0000932.jpg

    That said, since I got them I've been a lot slower :lol:
    Saracen Tenet 3 - 2015 - Dead - Replaced with a Hack Frame
    Voodoo Bizango - 2014 - Dead - Hit by a car
    Vitus Sentier VRS - 2017
  • CalpolCalpol Posts: 1,039
    I switched earlier this year. I wanted lighter, stiffer and blingier shoes. Was a bit worried at first but after a couple of rides its like you never used anything else. I think there is a discernible better connection to the pedal making for more comfort, particularly on longer rides and also when standing up to climb (the latter may be more a factor of increased stiffness in the sole). Looking and feeling more pro will surely make you ride more pro - so I say go for it.
  • slowbikeslowbike Posts: 8,498
    prawny wrote:
    Slowbike wrote:
    prawny wrote:
    Look more Pro

    That's got to be one of the worst reasons to change!

    I'd rather ride around in civies if it meant I could clean up on strava segments!

    But, but, but

    G0000932.jpg

    That said, since I got them I've been a lot slower :lol:

    shimano-m087-sh-11-zoom.jpg

    Whats the difference?
  • nick1972nick1972 Posts: 144
    Thanks for all the advice guys. You've certainly given me food for thought.
  • paul_mckpaul_mck Posts: 1,058
    Nick1972 wrote:
    Thanks for all the advice guys. You've certainly given me food for thought.

    I found the SLs a nice platform to pedal on than regular SPDs. Foot feels more planted and I found them easier to clip in/out of. I also think with SPDs your foot is free to rotate more.

    I use Time i-Clics though, didnt like the shimano ones as much (105s).

    cleats are a killer though they get wrecked so easily.
  • prawnyprawny Posts: 5,421
    Slowbike wrote:
    Whats the difference?

    The ones you posted are grey, mine are silver 8)

    But still, we should all be aiming for this

    222-659x440.jpg
    Saracen Tenet 3 - 2015 - Dead - Replaced with a Hack Frame
    Voodoo Bizango - 2014 - Dead - Hit by a car
    Vitus Sentier VRS - 2017
  • Kingsmill1Kingsmill1 Posts: 103
    i had exactly the same question last week but it would mean changing pedals on both my road bikes to SL, however i found the Shimano RO88 which allow for SPD and SL. These are light, look like pro shoes and are not badly priced. However you do need a SPD modification which is about £15.00 to protect the SPD cleat and allow you to walk. However given that I had to change two sets of pedals at about £60-70 and wanted to still be able to walk the SPD is still a good choice for me.
    Giant TCR Comp 2
    Specialized Allez Sport
  • markhewitt1978markhewitt1978 Posts: 7,614
    The ability to walk is always one of the things that I think is important. I use SPD and last weekend I cycled to Gibside (National Trust property with lots of gravel paths, grass etc) and was able to walk around several miles with the family, then cycle home again, without having to change shoes.
  • Jon_1976Jon_1976 Posts: 690
    I've both systems and the biggest difference is weight. I was using M520 pedals and cleats, which weigh a lot more than the I-Clic 2 I''m using now. The Shimano are bomb proof though.

    On the bike ( with similar shoes, both Northwave stiff soled) I noticed very little difference between the two. About the only thing I can say, and this is subjective, I feel more connected to the pedal using the Time pedals/cleats. Times are also easier to clip in and out IMO.

    Also, My feet tend to get cold pretty easily and I found most overshoes are designed for road shoes. I did have some MTb/spd designed ones but I still find road specific (on road shoes) fit better.
  • monkimarkmonkimark Posts: 938
    I've just switched my spd-sl to spd because I was sick of hobbling round the yard on my way into work and after snapping a chain a mile from home i pretty much wore out the cleats after a few months.

    The mtb shoes/pedals are also easier to clip in/out of so better suited to the endless traffic lights I have to contend with on my commute.
    I was planning on changing them back for weekend rides but I'm not sure I'll bother - no great benefit to the road shoes from what I can see
    Everyone's always telling me how much better the stiffness/platform size is with road pedals/shoes and I can see the point, I'm just not sure if it makes that much difference - maybe I'll change my mind after a longer ride this weekend.
  • djm501djm501 Posts: 378
    I posted on this subject a few weeks back when I blithely commented that I was pleased with a few months of lifetime out of my SPD-SL cleats.
    It's the only system I've ever known as when I got into cycling last year I just went out and bought some 'cycling shoes' because I thought they might be useful. I then ended up having to buy new pedals and cleats! Doh, but it was good move of course in the end, even if I did get it rather the wrong way around.

    Anyway, I got a reality check when several posters immediately replied 'months???!!!, I get _years_ out of my SPD cleats' Got to admit, this I did not know and had I, I would not really have gone for the SL's. However, you can get cleat covers for SPD-SL's - so with a small investment you can reduce the wear considerably.

    I've been stranded 2-3 miles out with just my road shoes on - I managed to walk it OK - but the cleats were beaten to hell when I got home. Annoying as they were new at the time but they're nearly worn out now, 2 1/2 months later.
  • HaughjdHaughjd Posts: 93
    I'm not Bradley Wiggins so I don't need anything more than my spd peddles.

    I've never tried spd sl so I can only comment on the spd.

    They work well easy to clip in out etc. but for me the reason why they are the perfect choice. It's because you can walk easy in them. So if on a ride with some friends that takes in a nice tea room you'll still be able to walk. Without looking like you're on ice.

    Go for spd's then you can still walk when you get to where you're going.

    Cheers

    Jon
  • I have SPD-SLs and I love them, but they are the only system I've tried.

    The best thing I can see about them is that they are difficult to walk in, removing any temptation for the beginner to get off and walk up a hill.

    The worst thing I can see about is that they are difficult to walk in, removing any ability to get off and walk.
  • simon_mastersonsimon_masterson Posts: 2,740
    monkimark wrote:
    Everyone's always telling me how much better the stiffness/platform size is with road pedals/shoes and I can see the point, I'm just not sure if it makes that much difference - maybe I'll change my mind after a longer ride this weekend.

    At a certain price point it would seem that there is greater availability of stiff shoes in the 'road' category; simply because a lot of entry-level MTB shoes are aimed at commuters and tourers, whereas road shoes are good for nothing else. All MTB-type shoes are obviously designed for a certain degree of 'walkability', but it's not as if road cyclists are the only ones who like stiff soles. It's not as if you can't get SPD pedals with large platforms: see the 'touring' pedals that Shimano offers. (A530 and A600, IIRC)

    The key factor here is that the SPD cleat is necessarily smaller to allow it to recess. This simply means that it may not be quite as sure underfoot as a larger cleat, though some riders and not others find this a problem. It hasn't come up, thankfully, but all you need to know is that anything anyone tells you about 'better power transfer' and the like is tosh; concocted by marketeers and perpetuated by the gullible. ;)
  • paul_mckpaul_mck Posts: 1,058
    big benefit for me is the increased power transfer.

    :P

    For a commuter its a no brainer Id go SPD but for my commuter I got some good big nukeproof flat pedals. Means no unclipping at lights and feel much safer in heavy traffic and bad weather etc.

    btw I had some Diadora road shoes at the start that took SPD cleats. They stuck out from the flat sole of the shoe which made walking awkward but the cleats are indestructable so it was no biggie.

    For my time pedals I just ordered some covers as I have to walk down my gravel drive to start any ride from home and it just chews up the plastic cleats.
  • iPeteiPete Posts: 6,076
    dare i ask where this increased power is coming from?
  • paul_mckpaul_mck Posts: 1,058
    iPete wrote:
    dare i ask where this increased power is coming from?

    the increased fulcrum angle of insertion is optimised for the optimal angle to which insertion is optimised.
  • djm501djm501 Posts: 378
    The best thing I can see about them is that they are difficult to walk in, removing any temptation for the beginner to get off and walk up a hill.

    The worst thing I can see about is that they are difficult to walk in, removing any ability to get off and walk.

    Smirk. I tried to climb the Devil's Staircase in southwest Wales a couple of weeks ago. Trust me - I got off and walked - even in SL's ;-)
  • keef66keef66 Posts: 13,123
    I've accidentally ended up with a combination of SPD M540 pedals and Nike touring type shoes. That was nearly 6 years ago and neither appear to be wearing out, so I think I'll be buried with them.
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