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Clipless Pedals in Winter

TarqyTarqy Posts: 14
edited October 2014 in MTB general
Hi All,

I've just ordered a new bike and I need to purchase a set of pedals as it doesn't come with any. I'm considering switching to clipless but being a clipless virgin I'm a bit hesitant about starting out with this during the winter months.

I live up in the North East so we tend to get pretty bad weather and I'm just not sure I like the idea of being clipped in on an icy morning!

What are other peoples experience of this? I've been saved a few times by managing to get a foot down and I'm not sure on how easy this would be if I'm clipped in.

Cheers
2015 Cube Reaction GTC SL 27.5
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Posts

  • Don't wind the mechanism up too tight (SPD) and you'll release so easily when you need to that you'll wonder why you ever thought there might be a problem (get the multi-directional release cleats as well.

    Or alternatively just get the best clipless system out there from Crank Brothers. Easy engage (four sided so always ready to go), easy release, good float - can be varied with cleat mounting, a variety of pedal options depending on whether you want no/small/medium/large platform around the clip.
    Trail fun - Transition Bandit
    Road - Wilier Izoard Centaur/Cube Agree C62 Disc
    Allround - Cotic Solaris
  • In the winter is probably better than trying them in the summer as in the winter there is more mud about and this can give you a softer landing.

    Put the tension on low and sit on your bike between a doorway hold your self up and practice unclipping, most of us have fallen over when clipped in, after a while it becomes natural and do not be indecisive if you decide to unclip then unclip as the occasions I have fallen over is when I changed my mind about unclipping, deciding to stay clipped in then changed my mind again and fell over.
    A mouthfull of mud, i guess ive crashed

    Giant xtc se
    Trek 1.2compact
  • Or alternatively just get the best clipless system out there from Crank Brothers. Easy engage (four sided so always ready to go), easy release, good float - can be varied with cleat mounting, a variety of pedal options depending on whether you want no/small/medium/large platform around the clip.

    Couldn't agree with this more!! When I switched to clipless I tried my bosses SPDs before buying any pedals, tension fully undone and didn't like them at all, couldn't unclip and I was all ready for just sticking with flat pedals. I was advised by someone on here to try Eggbeaters instead, which I did and they were so much better for me. The unclipping 'motion' feels different...easier and I've never looked back since. I've done my best to fail to unclip and fall off, especially in the first few weeks but with the eggbeaters I've found I'm not able to do it - even in moments of sheer panic as I realise I'm still clipped in and I've started to fall over, the panic just ends up with me unclipping. I've come very close twice, but always managed to unclip just in time!! If you have any concerns about clipless I would fully recommend trying the Crank Brothers pedals. Be prepared for a bit of maintenance though - had no problems myself (2,500 ish miles on mine so far, 1,000 on my other bike) but I have read of some problems if you don't strip them down and re-grease them from time to time - it isn't hard to do though...

    If you go clipless now, you should be used to unclipping before the bad weather arrives.
    "I look pretty young, but I'm just back-dated"
  • apreadingapreading Posts: 4,532
    Schoie81 wrote:
    When I switched to clipless I tried my bosses SPDs before buying any pedals, tension fully undone and didn't like them at all, couldn't unclip and I was all ready for just sticking with flat pedals. I was advised by someone on here to try Eggbeaters instead, which I did and they were so much better for me. The unclipping 'motion' feels different...easier and I've never looked back since. I've done my best to fail to unclip and fall off, especially in the first few weeks but with the eggbeaters I've found I'm not able to do it - even in moments of sheer panic as I realise I'm still clipped in and I've started to fall over, the panic just ends up with me unclipping. I've come very close twice, but always managed to unclip just in time!!

    If you take out the bits in yellow about eggbeaters, you could be exactly describing my experience with SPD. Just took a couple of weeks riding for it to feel second nature.
  • ilovedirtilovedirt Posts: 5,798
    You'll get used to it quickly enough, unclipping and clipping back in is second nature to me. I run SPDs in all weather, though they do tend to get clogged up in snow
    Production Privee Shan

    B'Twin Triban 5
  • apreading wrote:
    If you take out the bits in yellow about eggbeaters, you could be exactly describing my experience with SPD. Just took a couple of weeks riding for it to feel second nature.

    Yeah... I did say "they were so much better for me" I've spoken to lots of people about pedals and most haven't had problems with SPDs, so I'm not saying there's anything wrong with SPDs, but for me personally, I didn't get on with them at all. The best way I can describe the difference I found was that the SPDs felt like they'd got my foot tight, even whilst unclipping, until there is a bit of a 'click' and suddenly your foot comes free (theoretically :wink: ) - the eggbeaters feel to me as if your foot is stuck to them with glue, or chewing gum and twisting your foot to unclip is a smooth movement until it comes free - it feels a bit more subtle. I was very nervous about going to clipless and for me it was simple - I fell over with the SPDs (indoors..) and I didn't with the eggbeaters. That...and they're not as common as SPDs! :)
    "I look pretty young, but I'm just back-dated"
  • ilovedirt wrote:
    You'll get used to it quickly enough, unclipping and clipping back in is second nature to me. I run SPDs in all weather, though they do tend to get clogged up in snow

    That's the other advantage of Crank Brothers. NOTHING clogs them up!
    Trail fun - Transition Bandit
    Road - Wilier Izoard Centaur/Cube Agree C62 Disc
    Allround - Cotic Solaris
  • njee20njee20 Posts: 9,613
    They weigh a lot less too. Finally got myself a set of Egg Beater 11s a couple of weeks ago after dithering for ohhhhh 6 years or so.

    Bear in mind though they don't have adjustable tension, whilst I've not met anyone who complains about them it is fixed. I also don't think they're quite as easy to get into as SPDs myself, and cleats wear out more quickly.
  • njee20 wrote:
    They weigh a lot less too. Finally got myself a set of Egg Beater 11s a couple of weeks ago after dithering for ohhhhh 6 years or so.

    Bear in mind though they don't have adjustable tension, whilst I've not met anyone who complains about them it is fixed. I also don't think they're quite as easy to get into as SPDs myself, and cleats wear out more quickly.

    Not as easy to get into as SPDs is one I've never heard before. I've heard a lot of moans that people don't know whether they're engaged or not because they don't have the positive click of the SPD but definitely no comments about being a harder engagement.

    Definitely true about cleat wear.
    Trail fun - Transition Bandit
    Road - Wilier Izoard Centaur/Cube Agree C62 Disc
    Allround - Cotic Solaris
  • njee20njee20 Posts: 9,613
    Dunno, not much in it, just find that I'm more prone to missing the pedal with EBs than I was with SPDs, dunno if the smoother pedal surface is less likely to 'catch' the cleat.

    Most noticeable if I'm trying to clip on a short run up before an obstacle or something.
  • I use spd all the time and it's second nature clipping in and out. (I am feeling generous having changed to xt pedalsI have my old pedals doing nothing . Pm me and you can have them for 0 quid. They're shimano with a resin cage .... may find that handy as if in a tricky area you can ride unclipped... at a pinch I have ridden in flip flops. M424. In very good condition.
  • A mate of mine commuting home from work in winter slid out on a wet/icy road and smashed his knee to pieces because he couldnt get out of his spd's in time. However, he was booking it and cranked over into a turn so chances are he wouldn't have got a foot down in flats either.

    This story is in no way useful.
    Closet jockey wheel pimp censored .
  • stubsstubs Posts: 5,001
    My mate used SPDs last winter when he fell over the bike burst into flames and we had to cut both his legs off with a multi tool because he couldnt unclip.
    Fig rolls: proof that god loves cyclists and that she wants us to do another lap
  • stubs wrote:
    My mate used SPDs last winter when he fell over the bike burst into flames and we had to cut both his legs off with a multi tool because he couldnt unclip.

    Should have used the multitool too cut the laces/straps off his/her shoes then could have run away from the burning bike, rookie error was your mate new to SPD's.
    Pain hurts much less if its topped off with beating your mates to top of a climb.
  • POAHPOAH Posts: 3,369
    get yourself a pair of time atac pedals. I've had the same pair for about 18 years now. easy to clip in and out but importantly they have a good amount of float.
  • apreadingapreading Posts: 4,532
    Getting out of the clips shoudnt be a problem: https://www.facebook.com/video.php?v=38 ... 70&fref=nf
  • njee20njee20 Posts: 9,613
    POAH wrote:
    get yourself a pair of time atac pedals. I've had the same pair for about 18 years now. easy to clip in and out but importantly they have a good amount of float.

    That's personal rather than important...
  • POAHPOAH Posts: 3,369
    njee20 wrote:
    POAH wrote:
    get yourself a pair of time atac pedals. I've had the same pair for about 18 years now. easy to clip in and out but importantly they have a good amount of float.

    That's personal rather than important...

    getting in/out and lots of float is kinda important plus the fact they have lasted so long. none of that is a personal opinion really.
  • I think njee meant float is a personal thing - some people dont like it and float can make the feeling of getting in and out less positive.
    Closet jockey wheel pimp censored .
  • njee20njee20 Posts: 9,613
    POAH wrote:
    njee20 wrote:
    POAH wrote:
    get yourself a pair of time atac pedals. I've had the same pair for about 18 years now. easy to clip in and out but importantly they have a good amount of float.

    That's personal rather than important...

    getting in/out and lots of float is kinda important plus the fact they have lasted so long. none of that is a personal opinion really.

    Why is lots of float important? Why can you get different amounts of float with different cleats? Why can you get cleats with no float at all? Maybe because it's personal. If more is better why not have 90 degree float? :roll:

    I find too much float feels vague, prefer a tighter feeling.
  • stubsstubs Posts: 5,001
    I used Time ATACs for several years but found myself struggling to unclip the right foot because of an old knee injury. having to twist the 15 degrees hurt when I was tired near the end of a ride. Went back to SPDs which have 5 degrees of float.
    Fig rolls: proof that god loves cyclists and that she wants us to do another lap
  • njee20njee20 Posts: 9,613
    Case in point...
  • POAHPOAH Posts: 3,369
    stubs wrote:
    I used Time ATACs for several years but found myself struggling to unclip the right foot because of an old knee injury. having to twist the 15 degrees hurt when I was tired near the end of a ride. Went back to SPDs which have 5 degrees of float.


    did you know you can turn the cleat round to get less float :|
  • Tried egg-beaters and hated them, went back to spds and much happier.
    On my commuter I have these: http://www.wiggle.co.uk/shimano-a530-sp ... ng-pedals/
    which are perfect for the bike as I use it with casual shoes as well. Good option if you're a bit nervous about it as well.
    Music, beer, sport, repeat...
  • stubsstubs Posts: 5,001
    POAH wrote:
    stubs wrote:
    I used Time ATACs for several years but found myself struggling to unclip the right foot because of an old knee injury. having to twist the 15 degrees hurt when I was tired near the end of a ride. Went back to SPDs which have 5 degrees of float.


    did you know you can turn the cleat round to get less float :|

    14 or 15 degrees is standard turning them round gives you even more float
    Fig rolls: proof that god loves cyclists and that she wants us to do another lap
  • njee20njee20 Posts: 9,613
    Good option if you're a bit nervous about it as well.

    Not so sure, single sided are harder to use, and the non clip side isn't particularly grippy.
  • I never liked CB pedals - always felt like there was too much float for me, felt like I was skating somehow. The XT (and XTR, SLX, Deore) "Trail" SPD's are nice, bit of extra pedal size if you cant get clipped back in quickly in a marginal situation.

    You will probably fall off forgetting to unclip at some point, but it will be once you think you are used to the pedals and forget to remind yourself to clip out. For me it was on the road, I was about 13/14 at the time, rode up beside the local girls schools minibus at the traffic lights..... and toppled gracefully off to raucous laughter.
  • njee20 wrote:
    Good option if you're a bit nervous about it as well.

    Not so sure, single sided are harder to use, and the non clip side isn't particularly grippy.

    In an MTB context they are rubbish. For their intended use, touring, they'll be just the job.
  • njee20njee20 Posts: 9,613
    njee20 wrote:
    Good option if you're a bit nervous about it as well.

    Not so sure, single sided are harder to use, and the non clip side isn't particularly grippy.

    In an MTB context they are rubbish. For their intended use, touring, they'll be just the job.

    But I'm not sure they're a "good option if you're nervous", being single sided they're harder to use than a conventional double sided SPD.
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