Shoes and pedals, I'm confused

john peck

Well-Known Member
I wouldn't say they are snob appeal. More of a cult following. Steel lugged frames are a very niche market these days. I think the Atlantis is a gorgeous bike and I would love to own one, but you get a lot more bang for the buck with a Surly if you want a steel frame.
Oh yeah, they were some gorgeous bikes for those who had more money than they knew what
to do with. I´ve often wondered if certain Surlys were really built on old Chicago Schwinn frames.
I did some yard work for old man Schwinn. He owned a cabin in a private trout ranch outside
of Leadville, CO.
 
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Formernuke

Member
Region
USA
Mentioning the possibility of having to walk the bike is a good factor.

If I get biking shoes I'm gearing towards the Adidas, but I am still undecided.
 

RunForTheHills

Well-Known Member
Region
USA
Oh yeah, they were some gorgeous bikes for those who had more money than they knew what
to do with. I´ve often wondered if certain Surlys were really built on old Chicago Schwinn frames.
I did some yard work for old man Schwinn. He owned a cabin in a private trout ranch outside
of Leadville, CO.
The old Schwinns weighed a lot more. My first ten speed was a Schwinn Junior Varsity. Even though it was a small frame with 24" wheels, I think it weighed five pounds more than my Surly LHT. A lot of that has to do with the components too though. Schwinn made high end bikes too back in the day, like the Paramount.
 

soyabean

Active Member
Region
Canada
I think the real issue is that you do not recognize or understand the advantage of purpose specific shoes and pedals or don't think those advantages warrant any added cost.
I've never told the OP or others what to do. I understand in forums it may be common for strangers to tell others what they must do.

I merely wrote what I choose to do and why.

I would like to say now that you are wrong to assume of what I do know or what I may not know. I would invite you to explore the possibility that I may be working in the industry, and actively continue flip over a hundred bikes of every species and flavor each season.
 
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Alaskan

Well-Known Member
I've never told the OP or others what to do. I understand in forums it may be common for strangers to tell others what they must do.

I merely wrote what I choose to do and why.

I would like to say now that you are wrong to assume of what I do know or what I may not know. I would invite you to explore the possibility that I may be working in the industry, and actively continue flip over a hundred bikes of every species and flavor each season.
Like I said, no right answer that works for everyone. There are several options in between flat city pedal with tennies and clip ins...like mtb flat pedals with pins and a sticky soled mtb shoe. I prefer those pedals with a good Salamon Tral Runner shoe.

Your final statement seemed to imply that anyone who chose something other than flat city pedals and sneakers was wasting money. Perhaps I read more into it than you intended.

....
 
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Stefan Mikes

Well-Known Member
Region
Europe
City
Brwinów (PL)
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Adidas FiveTen FreeRider Pro on CrankBrothers Stamp Large pedal.

These shoes are walkable, although I would perhaps not run in them.
 

Prairie Dog

Well-Known Member
Region
Canada
City
Red Deer
My wife had a set of Specialized Bennies on her Creo. She complained about the odd pedal strike from the pins and metal pedals. I switched the Bennies over to resin CB Stamp 1s from my 30 yr old Trek 970 and now she is happy with the setup. Nice thing about the Stamps is that you can adjust the pins by lowering/raising their height to one’s own personal preference which is what I did in her case. She’s not a hard-core road rider and feels comfortable wearing her trail running shoes. What freaks me out is when I see people cycling around on flip flops.

As for me, I prefer SPD 2-hole clipless pedals on the road as I can still walk in my shoes since the cleats are recessed into the sole. Stamp 1s on the trail because they provide ample grip, aren’t that expensive and take a beating.
 

Elkman

Active Member
Ok my bike experience. As a teen and kid I rode my bike everywhere as I'm sure others did. My parents didn't drive me, I rode a bike.

As an adult I would drive to a campground, park the car and then ride everywhere for the rest of my errands on the week long camp trip.

I have not been on a bike in several years, though I was considering starting to ride to work (4.5 miles away) rather than driving but there is a steep hill and I'm not a spring chicken anymore plus my son just reached riding age. One the guys at work rides in and he mentioned that used a e-bike which I had never heard of. After some research I realized that this will work very well, so I ordered a e-bike.

All the previous times I rode I never realized that there are shoes and pedals just for bike riding.

So now my plans are to ride to and from work, grocery store and all other local errands. I will also by riding with my son and doing local forest type trails (groomed type not actual mountain type).

Will using specific bike shoes with clipless pedals actually matter instead of just my sneakers? Or is it just wasting money?
For the forest trails the flat bike shoes like those sold under the Five Ten brand have a very grippy sole to keep them on the pedals. For normal walking the grippy rubber is going to wear much faster than regular sneakers. There are also "mountain bike" shoes that have a harder sole than the Five Ten type but will provide a much better overall walking shoe when not on the bike.

For hills the problem I see is people not having a low enough gear on the bike and even changing out the rear cog for a larger one can help a great deal. The other mistake is in going half way up the hill is a higher gear and then trying to go to a lower gear at that point. Best to shift into the gear that you know you can use to go all the way even if it means you need to coast into the hill at the start.

Pedals also vary in terms of their surface and how much gripping they provide for shoes. Replacing the pedals may allow for use of a wider range of shoes. A big difference with clipless bike shoes is the greater rigidity of the sole which is much less tiring for the feet of the rider on multi hour rides.
 

soyabean

Active Member
Region
Canada
I second the idea of just try the pedal that comes with your bike. IF you don't like them you may well have a better idea what needs to be changed.
Exactly.

The many pedals I hoard are not for me, but for the installs I do for the buyers. Yet when some newbie insists on a kind of pedal just because of what they read somewhere online, I don't talk them out of it and just do what is easier, which is to take their money.

Having road tested hundreds of bikes and pedals, I like city pedals the best for what I do with my bikes.
 

christob

Well-Known Member
I ride almost exclusively on pavement, suburban multi-use trails and residential roads. I started out on the flat pedals that came with my bike, and riding in my sneakers/tennis shoes. Eventually I decided to try clips -- I put on pedals that had traditional flat on one side, but clip on the other so I could continue to use my sneakers whenever I wished {Shimano PD-M324} and bought a pair of clip shoes as well. (The sneaker-shaped shoes have a fairly rigid bottom, and so they're not ideal for say, biking to a park then walking around for an hour... I bike to work in the clips, with a pair of shoes to change into, in my saddle bag.) The clips took a ride or two to adjust to, but it was fine once I mastered the connect/disconnect. After 2 years riding in this setup, I now much prefer the clip shoes for most of my rides other than say a quick jaunt to the coffee shop. I'm not really interested in the clip solution for power efficiency gains, or the ability to pull up on the upstroke -- though maybe I'm gaining a marginal amount of boost -- I've never tried to analyze that. I just like feeling my feet this positively joined with the pedal (yet with a quick & easy release when needed; I've never encountered a situation yet, knock on wood, where I couldn't disconnect quickly enough.) I found with my sneakers, on longer rides, it was easier for the pedals to feel like they were going to get away from my feet in certain situations - with one or two cases of the pedal spinning back around to whack the back of my leg.
 

RunForTheHills

Well-Known Member
Region
USA
These are larger and heavier but they are super comfy and really work:

They might be worth a try. The only negative I can see is that they don't have reflectors. Pedal reflectors going up and down are very effective at identifying a cyclist to motorists at night. If you don't ride at night it is not a big deal and you can always wear reflective ankle straps.
 

Toomanycats

Active Member
@Formernuke: The world has changed a lot. A perfect alternative to the clipless pedals/shoes exists now.

You've heard about flat and clipless pedals. There is a third flavour: Platform (MTB) pedals. The platform pedals differ from ordinary city flat pedals: the former are profiled and equipped with traction pins. The beauty of the platform MTB pedals is you can absolutely ride them in regular shoes but you also can further improve the experience by wearing specific cycling shoes. The grip for such combination is improbably good, and you actually feel as if you were riding clipless. You can adjust your foot position on the pedal (impossible with clipless), and removing feet from pedals is extremely safe. Let me name some excellent pedals, and one model of specific shoes:
  • Race Face Ride are excellent and safe platform pedals. Instead of metal traction pins, these are equipped with 18 moulded traction studs. You just wear trainers or any regular shoes for these pedals. In case a pedal incidentally hits your shin or calf, no damage. Greatly recommended.
  • Race Face Chester are classical metal-traction-pin MTB platform pedals. The pins hold the sole of your shoe as it were glued to the pedal.
  • Crank Brothers Stamp 1 pedals are equally good as Chesters are. Stamp 1 pedals can be ordered as Large for large feet or for more foot positions.
Now: I often ride Stamps in trainers, and it is perfect. If you would like to get exactly the same feeling as using clipless pedals, Adidas FiveTen FreeRider Pro MTB cycling shoes are the best of the best for MTB platform pedals. Their soles feel as connected with metal-traction-pins of Chesters or Stamps. You actually need to raise your foot to remove it from the pedal!

As I said, Race Face Ride pedals are safe. Metal-traction-pin pedals can hurt your shin or calf a little in case you're not careful.
I agree. I've ridden my ebike about 6000 miles, and have been really happy with the combination metal pin pedals plus Freeriders. I have ridden so much that both the shoes and pedals are getting worn, and will need replacement.
If the OP is reading, the combination of sticky shoes/pedals is really useful, because you want to pedal in a smooth, circular motion. Much more efficient and better for your knees.
I'd only suggest that you wait on the shoes and pedals until you feel reasonably confident on the bike, because as an older returning rider, (like me) you will already have a learning curve.
 

Stefan Mikes

Well-Known Member
Region
Europe
City
Brwinów (PL)
because you want to pedal in a smooth, circular motion.
Extremely well said! I'm currently teaching my new female riding companion "spinning" instead of "mashing" her crank. She cannot spin because she hasn't mastered the "smooth circular motion" technique yet.
 

PDoz

Well-Known Member
This thread and in particular @Stefan Mikes posts have opened some new doors to me and now I'm in full-on pedal investigation. Some higher end options I'm considering:

Hope F20
Nukeproof Horizon Pro

I'm also looking at the Five Ten shoes.

If you really want to deep dive into mtb options , skip the marketing and go straight to the source of cold, hard truth - nb This is from another forum, he has more mtb knowledge in his little toe than most of us have any chance of experiencing.

E21AC05B-9C24-4043-869A-DF9DF3C48FD4.jpeg


I'll confess to not using any of his suggestions, but that has more to do with my deformed foot than any logical or perceived benefit from the one up components that I use.

Shoes......now the discussion gets interesting!! Here I disagree with sir Gary. He wears flexible and less grippy shoes - claiming to prefer the extra feel and to like moving his foot around. I'm not good enough for that, so I NEED grip, but also like a particular stiffness in my shank AND I NEED PROTECTION. This is non negotiable to me, having experienced the joy of crushing my foot and breaking 5 bones , I'll pay whatever it takes to feel relatively safe spinning my pedals past rocks / roots. Feet are complex structures, if you don't believe me, then invite a podiatrist over for an evening of conversation. Bring good wine and great drugs, you will need both.

So I look for shoes with impact zones ( energy absorbing padding) in the toe box as well as outer edge, with enough feel that I know where my foot is but enough stiffness that I can transfer power without foot fatigue. More importantly, they need to fit my foot - so width and torsional stiffness needs to suit my deformities.You simply can't get this information online , and to some extent you need to decide what's important. . My fiveten freeride pro's are too narrow for my feet - ie if I buy them in the size where everything else works, my mid foot gets cramped and after a couple of hours standing on the pegs my foot goes numb.

My older daughter prefers their lighter freestyle shoes, she's crazier than me and does absurd things so needs the agility but still likes grip. Those shoes are extremely comfortable to walk in, less efficient for pedalling, and offer minimal protection. They also look casual enough I'd be happy to wear them into a pub.....

For cycling in low consequence environments, I just wear a decent set of goretex lined trail running shoes. The sole isn't anywhere near as grippy as my five tens, but my pedals have more than enough studs to compensate for that. They have reasonable shank stiffness , fit my foot perfectly , are reasonably weather resistant, and reasonably ok for social outings. There isn't as much protection, but being trail running shoes they are spectacular for walking the tricky sections - ie walking the drops I probably shouldn't be riding...
 
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