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Speedplay Zero and a weak bladder in the Mudlands

ugo.santaluciaugo.santalucia Posts: 26,773
edited April 2017 in Road buying advice
OK, I was luring after these, but I am not convinced by the design of the cleat... basically it is a hole with a screw mechanism.

Now, imagine this scenario, which happens to me basically once or twice a week from October to April: I stop at the side of the road, typically in proximity to a gate leading to an open field, marginally sheltered from viewers... as I remount, I notice a lump of mud has accumulated around my cleat... I shake it off, engage and go... but if the mud had clogged a hole, that would be a nightmare scenario, involving removal of the shoe and deep cleaning of the area... and potentially damage to the expensive little thing

Where in my assumptions am I going wrong?

Posts

  • mrb123mrb123 Posts: 3,727
    Buy the Speedplays. They're brilliant.

    Then find somewhere less muddy to piss, or get some of the little cleat covers to put on while you do the deed, or save them for summer and use SPDs during the winter.
  • fat daddyfat daddy Posts: 2,605
    Where in my assumptions am I going wrong?


    nowhere ... I think when speed play invented the zeros they didn't envision people getting off the bike, especially with mud around ..... gentlemen please, this pedal is for the road, none of this childish cyclocross or heaven forbid cobbles, one might scratch something.

    of course over time they realised that the elder gentleman did need to get off the bike when not in a place he could go whilst cycling, so they invented the zero pave for clearing mud
  • ugo.santaluciaugo.santalucia Posts: 26,773
    As I suspected... they seem bollox for PROs who wee in their shorts

    One has to be practical about these things... there is nowhere not-muddy round here
  • bsharp77bsharp77 Posts: 533
    As I suspected... they seem bollox for PROs who wee in their shorts

    One has to be practical about these things... there is nowhere not-muddy round here

    Couldn't agree more Ugo. Its nigh on impossible to find anywhere on my routes with any sort of privacy without going across a load of muck and puddles for at least 6-8 months of the year.
    I've always wanted to try the speedplays - but this is one of the major reasons I'm staying with SPD-SL.

    For some infuriating reason I can no longer go for more than an hour on the bike without needing a pee stop, which can get mighty annoying when I'm out at the weekend for 3-4 hours..... :oops:
  • sungodsungod Posts: 14,360
    these... http://www.wiggle.co.uk/speedplay-coffe ... at-covers/ ...work well, just tuck in a jersey pocket, they last for years

    the walkable cleats are another matter, they come with some round bungs but these are pretty useless, fall out as soon as looked at

    fwiw i've used speedplay zero for years, including on the commute bike, they've had all kinds of cack in them, sand, gravel, mud, worse, just wipe with a tissue or some leaves or a stick so that the hole is clear, check you can clip in/out ok or if you missed a bit, carry on riding
    my bike - faster than god's and twice as shiny
  • ugo.santaluciaugo.santalucia Posts: 26,773
    sungod wrote:
    these... http://www.wiggle.co.uk/speedplay-coffe ... at-covers/ ...work well, just tuck in a jersey pocket, they last for years

    the walkable cleats are another matter, they come with some round bungs but these are pretty useless, fall out as soon as looked at

    fwiw i've used speedplay zero for years, including on the commute bike, they've had all kinds of cack in them, sand, gravel, mud, worse, just wipe with a tissue or some leaves or a stick so that the hole is clear, check you can clip in/out ok or if you missed a bit, carry on riding

    Bit of a hassle though, then I have to take them off, stick a pair of muddy rubber covers in my pocket, hoping it's just mud and not a mix of mud with dog's wee and cow shoot...

    Alternatively I can go around with a bag of baby wipes, a plastic bag to dispose of them

    It'sa probably just simpler to stick with Shimano cleats
  • graeme_s-2graeme_s-2 Posts: 3,382
    I use Speedplays, am renowned amongst my riding companions for my frequent pee stops and ride a lot of the same roads as you Ugo. I've had a problem with mud clogging a cleat once. Which admittedly is worse than never, but I wouldn't say it's been a significant issue.
  • indypindyp Posts: 735
    I also use them and find them great for my knees due the amount of float. I don't walk about through mud though and can see that being a problem. You can walk on your heels if not too muddy which will prevent the plates getting clogged up. And the earth is only going to get drier heading towards summer.
    I used coffee stops for years and they are very good but you do have to put them in your pocket even when dirty. It's not really a faff taking them off/on once you get used to it, and you can use a small wafer thin poly bag which weighs nothing to put them in if dirty which would be easy enough.
    I've just bought a set of walkable covers off ebay for less than a fiver, and so far they've been great and have stayed in place.
  • meesterbondmeesterbond Posts: 1,240
    After an incident with a horse on our club's Open Hilly TT a few weeks ago I took an unplanned detour through a front garden and ended up foot down in mud... first time the cleats have been blocked and one refused to engage. A good bang of the side of the shoe on the crank cleared the cleat enough to clip back in but it was a bit sketchy to start as I was in a bit of a hurry to get going again!

    So, they're not perfect but I'd happily swap the occasional blockage for happy knees...

    Fortunately my bladder is such that I don't usually need to stop but when I do the cleat covers work very well.
  • ugo.santaluciaugo.santalucia Posts: 26,773
    indyP wrote:
    I also use them and find them great for my knees due the amount of float. I don't walk about through mud though and can see that being a problem. You can walk on your heels if not too muddy which will prevent the plates getting clogged up. And the earth is only going to get drier heading towards summer.
    I used coffee stops for years and they are very good but you do have to put them in your pocket even when dirty. It's not really a faff taking them off/on once you get used to it, and you can use a small wafer thin poly bag which weighs nothing to put them in if dirty which would be easy enough.
    I've just bought a set of walkable covers off ebay for less than a fiver, and so far they've been great and have stayed in place.

    You are basically proving my point... it is a lot of faff to have a pair of marginally lighter pedals with a bit more float... not that I think I need more float than Shimano offer
  • fenixfenix Posts: 5,437
    I use speedplays and love them - but they're on my summer bike. In the winter I use Time Atacs - means I get to wear Stouter (and warmer) MTB shoes - better for cafe stops and mud doesn't bother them at all.

    CBA with coffee stop covers - they're a pain - but I do have the non Speedplay cleat surround on the shoes which protects the cleat, is less slippy and you don't need to put on and take off for coffee...
  • Ugo,
    You appear to have totally written off the SP's based on whether your pee stop will result in a muddy underfoot scenario!!
    I have used them for 4yrs, and quite honestly..in the back roads of the Peak District have never had them clog up to the point they were unridable..each to their own but I found that Shim/Look cleats etc wear out soooooo quickly, I know they are cheaper, but the SP cleats I have have been on the shoes for 2 1/2 yrs, I use cleat covers regularly too which definitely helps the longevity issue.
    So don't write them off Ugo, give them a real try, you won't go back..I never have/will.
  • earthearth Posts: 934
    OK, I was luring after these, but I am not convinced by the design of the cleat... basically it is a hole with a screw mechanism.

    Now, imagine this scenario, which happens to me basically once or twice a week from October to April: I stop at the side of the road, typically in proximity to a gate leading to an open field, marginally sheltered from viewers... as I remount, I notice a lump of mud has accumulated around my cleat... I shake it off, engage and go... but if the mud had clogged a hole, that would be a nightmare scenario, involving removal of the shoe and deep cleaning of the area... and potentially damage to the expensive little thing

    Where in my assumptions am I going wrong?

    It's not an issue. I've used them for 10 years (the same pair, albeit new cleats). First off the cleat is a hole with a split washer for a spring. From time to time mud does get in there. It has happend to me easily 4 times in the last ten years so it really is a reason to avoid them at all costs. But if you are brave or stupid enough as I am then when it happens you find a twig and poke the mud out.

    If that doesn't work carry a spare bidon and wee into that while on the move. Just make sure you don't get it mixed up with your sports drink.
  • ugo.santaluciaugo.santalucia Posts: 26,773
    Ugo,
    You appear to have totally written off the SP's based on whether your pee stop will result in a muddy underfoot scenario!!
    I have used them for 4yrs, and quite honestly..in the back roads of the Peak District have never had them clog up to the point they were unridable..each to their own but I found that Shim/Look cleats etc wear out soooooo quickly, I know they are cheaper, but the SP cleats I have have been on the shoes for 2 1/2 yrs, I use cleat covers regularly too which definitely helps the longevity issue.
    So don't write them off Ugo, give them a real try, you won't go back..I never have/will.

    I've lived in Manchester and ridden in the peaks extensively... it's different terrain, it drains a lot more and there is no mud. The midlands are flatlands where 10 mm of rain means it's muddy for a week, so in practice it's covered in mud autumn to late spring.
    I sued to enjoy a bit of off road up-norf and then even down south in Surrey, but round here it's so muddy it's not worth bothering
  • Learn to do the "Speedplay Shuffle", i.e walk like an idiot on the balls of your feet/ shoes :lol:

    Must say, I've never encountered the problem on the three pairs I have on separate bikes, but some people do call me "The Camel", due to my water retention skills :idea:

    I do have a friend/ team mate who got a small stone stuck in a cleat once resulting in (luckily), a pretty comical fall...

    Main reason I use them is they're easier to shim than other cleats (leg length descrep').
  • StillGoingStillGoing Posts: 5,207
    I use Speedplay Zeros, fast nearing 60 and can go 5 hours without any desperation to jump off the bike for a pee. Ugo just seems to be seeking an excuse not to use them. You don't need an excuse if you can't fathom out how to keep them clear or think its too much hassle to carry coffee covers. Buy your Shimano/Look pedals and countless plastic cleat replacements.
    I ride a bike. Doesn't make me green or a tree hugger. I drive a car too.
  • mrb123mrb123 Posts: 3,727
    I would guess the number of people on this forum who have switched to Speedplay and stuck with them vastly outnumber those who have moved from Speedplay to something else.
  • Thick MikeThick Mike Posts: 337
    You're not sweating enough Ugo!
  • A non issue. Been using them for 10 years and no occasional nip to the bushes has ever caused a problem.
  • on-yer-bikeon-yer-bike Posts: 2,974
    I use Speedplays and Look (Garmin Vector). I still prefer Speedplays. The mud in the hole is the only drawback. I very rarely stop for a slash on a ride but I have learnt to avoid the mud. For those that need to stop regularly to wee on a ride your saddle may be to blame.
    Pegoretti
    Colnago
    Cervelo
    Campagnolo
  • ugo.santaluciaugo.santalucia Posts: 26,773
    SO, to sum it up... the problem exists, as acknowledged by a few of you and by the internet wisdom, but most people either don't experience it, use cleat covers or clean the mud with a twig...

    On the bright side, over 2 hours and not a drop to speak of... :-)

    https://www.strava.com/activities/921846677
  • coops1967coops1967 Posts: 99
    Get the (even more expensive) Pave pedals.

    and get the walkable cleats too...
  • scott_w1987scott_w1987 Posts: 316
    Pee less discreetly and keep your foot on the edge of the road...
  • 964cup964cup Posts: 1,362
    Paves are the answer. I fitted some to my winter bike, and no longer have problems clipping in after stopping on muddy verges. They're a little heavier than normal Zeros, but not by much, and work perfectly well with the standard cleat. The only issue is cost, which is ridiculous. I bought mine from Evans ex-display clearance and they were still something like £125.

    Otherwise, just be careful where you step. I'd also recommend the aero cleats, as they're significantly more walkable, but otherwise get Keep-on-Kovers (or cheap, but identical, Chinese copies). They work brilliantly at avoiding the ice-skating sensation of an uncovered Speedplay cleat, but don't have to be removed to clip in. The Cafe Stop covers are completely useless, and usually get lost or left behind fairly quickly anyway.
  • northpolenorthpole Posts: 1,499
    Cheers Ugo!

    You've just reminded me that I bought some speedplays and never got round to fitting them. The posts on this thread provide me with sufficient comfort to give them a go. The shimano cleats seem to turn to tat as soon as you expose them to daylight! Thanks chaps!!

    Peter
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