The official cycling thread

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Gospel
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Re: The official cycling thread

Post by Gospel »

For a weekend warrior its often far more confidence inspiring to be able to move your foot off or back onto a flat pedal. A lot of MTB coaches have a preference for teaching people on flats to give them proper technique.
I can't remember the last time I saw anyone other than a fat old granny or kids riding without SPDs and I get every kind of rider passing the door as I'm situated on one of the most popular cycling routes this side of Londinium. It really is quite interesting to read the differences in thinking. Whatever works for you I guess but it's just plain daft in my view because you're giving up on so many advantages.
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Gospel
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Re: The official cycling thread

Post by Gospel »

Don't need 'em, don't want 'em. Not sure how getting out of the saddle is an issue on flats tbh, and the sweet kiss of V8 on shinbone is one of life's great pleasures. Meanwhile, I'll take being able to lose the front end and run out of it, rather than going down like a sack of spuds.
Have you ever tried them for an extended run? I'd be interested to see you compare times. I bet you'd be quicker.
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Re: The official cycling thread

Post by Armchair_Superstar »

Gospel wrote:
For a weekend warrior its often far more confidence inspiring to be able to move your foot off or back onto a flat pedal. A lot of MTB coaches have a preference for teaching people on flats to give them proper technique.
I can't remember the last time I saw anyone other than a fat old granny or kids riding without SPDs and I get every kind of rider passing the door as I'm situated on one of the most popular cycling routes this side of Londinium. It really is quite interesting to read the differences in thinking. Whatever works for you I guess but it's just plain daft in my view because you're giving up on so many advantages.
The only advantage you're giving up on is maybe 10% pedalling efficiency, assuming you're a decent bike handler. If you compare that to the consequences of not being able to get a foot out and back to stop yourself crashing into rocks, trees, and other solid objects, then its easy to see why people go for flats.
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DOB
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Re: The official cycling thread

Post by DOB »

Apposite wrote:Always been a toeclip man, on MTBs and on the road. Just like being able to wear my own shoes and free my feet in a hurry.
Best of both worlds;

Image

These were my road pedals for a long time, recently got a round-town bike and switched these over (pair of double-sided SPDs on my road bike). My feet never slip with my runners on them, but I can bring my clip-ons and go for a longer ride if I so wish.
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Apposite
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Re: The official cycling thread

Post by Apposite »

DOB wrote:
Apposite wrote:Always been a toeclip man, on MTBs and on the road. Just like being able to wear my own shoes and free my feet in a hurry.
Best of both worlds;

Image

These were my road pedals for a long time, recently got a round-town bike and switched these over (pair of double-sided SPDs on my road bike). My feet never slip with my runners on them, but I can bring my clip-ons and go for a longer ride if I so wish.
I'd still prefer clips on one side so I get the extra power when wearing normal shoes.
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DOB
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Re: The official cycling thread

Post by DOB »

Apposite wrote:
DOB wrote:
Apposite wrote:Always been a toeclip man, on MTBs and on the road. Just like being able to wear my own shoes and free my feet in a hurry.
Best of both worlds;

Image

These were my road pedals for a long time, recently got a round-town bike and switched these over (pair of double-sided SPDs on my road bike). My feet never slip with my runners on them, but I can bring my clip-ons and go for a longer ride if I so wish.
I'd still prefer clips on one side so I get the extra power when wearing normal shoes.
Fair enough.

If I'm on my bike in normal shoes, the extra bit of power is the least of my concerns.
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Re: The official cycling thread

Post by Womack »

Gospel wrote:
Don't need 'em, don't want 'em. Not sure how getting out of the saddle is an issue on flats tbh, and the sweet kiss of V8 on shinbone is one of life's great pleasures. Meanwhile, I'll take being able to lose the front end and run out of it, rather than going down like a sack of spuds.
Have you ever tried them for an extended run? I'd be interested to see you compare times. I bet you'd be quicker.
Well, no - I've never used them at all in fact!

As I say, if I do get more into longer recreational riding I will give them a go and will probably benefit from them, but for the purposes of a 10-mile commute I don't see the need for them, and for MTBing I have been influenced by the idea that it is better to learn your skillz on flats, and just generally feel that I don't want to use SPDs. Again, were I to get into longer XC riding then maybe that perspective would change.

Partly I also like being a maverick* - I do sometimes think that SPD use is so pervasive that many people don't even think about why they use them.

*In a rather pathetic, inconsequential way, that is.
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Re: The official cycling thread

Post by Seez »

Not using clipless? :? Next thing you'll be telling me you have hairy legs.
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Re: The official cycling thread

Post by Armchair_Superstar »

Seez wrote:Not using clipless? :? Next thing you'll be telling me you have hairy legs.
I have considered shaving them but I reckon its a fashion thing really, unless you're getting regular massage?
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Re: The official cycling thread

Post by Womack »

Seez wrote:Not using clipless? :? Next thing you'll be telling me you have hairy legs.
Hairy like a fox!

Well, not quite - I'm not a ghinge like.

I do so enjoy scalping shaved roadies with my BMX pedals, hairy legs, baggies and less-than-stellar physique. Of course, from time to time I'll pass one who's actually half-decent and will be summarily put in my place, but that's all part of The Game...
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Re: The official cycling thread

Post by Laurent »

some little shit is stealing anything that is not locked at my train station :x
Seez
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Re: The official cycling thread

Post by Seez »

Armchair_Superstar wrote:
Seez wrote:Not using clipless? :? Next thing you'll be telling me you have hairy legs.
I have considered shaving them but I reckon its a fashion thing really, unless you're getting regular massage?
Culture rather than fashion, please. I took the plunge when I went up to Cat 3 cos I didn't want it to mark me out as a noob shitehawk in races.

(Of course, yo-yoing off the back for a couple of laps until I get dropped is doing a much better job of marking me out as a noob shitehawk.)
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Re: The official cycling thread

Post by Seez »

Womack wrote:
Seez wrote:Not using clipless? :? Next thing you'll be telling me you have hairy legs.
Hairy like a fox!

Well, not quite - I'm not a ghinge like.

I do so enjoy scalping shaved roadies with my BMX pedals, hairy legs, baggies and less-than-stellar physique. Of course, from time to time I'll pass one who's actually half-decent and will be summarily put in my place, but that's all part of The Game...
Ah, SCR. The worst thing about shaven legs is that when you scalp someone riding a hybrid or road bike when you are on Brompton or Boris Bike, they may take solace from the fact that you are probably a fairly serious rider, and thus they are not completely broken mentally. :x

Wommers, I am surprised to see that you are actually in accordance with Rule 33 on this.
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Re: The official cycling thread

Post by Nieghorn »

Womack wrote:
Seez wrote:Not using clipless? :? Next thing you'll be telling me you have hairy legs.
Hairy like a fox!

Well, not quite - I'm not a ghinge like.

I do so enjoy scalping shaved roadies with my BMX pedals, hairy legs, baggies and less-than-stellar physique. Of course, from time to time I'll pass one who's actually half-decent and will be summarily put in my place, but that's all part of The Game...
:nod:

I've I high kill rate in town, and doing so safely I might add. I fully met my match on several occasions while taking my hybrid up a very hilly area that over-looks the river valley Ottawa is in. I thought it was 8kms up. Turns out it was 22. I was one of two people not on a $1000+ road bike and in lycra, and was over-taken by all of them. :(

My friend is an urban warrior like myself, but has been tackling this climb with her single speed and challenges people to races up it. (Best time is 56 mins or less.) Apparently I'm next on her hit list, though we share similar thoughts with regard to types of bike, dress, headphones on while ... etc.
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Re: The official cycling thread

Post by DOB »

I look for rabbits all the time on my rides, but I think my average speed is too low to catch up with anyone worth drafting behind, and too high to sit behind tourists. On the weekend I went past a bloke on a recliner bike stopped at the side of the road. 2 minutes later he blazed past me, so I picked it up to grab his wheel. I learned 2 things; 1) recliners have a much smaller draft profile, so no matter how close to his back wheel I got, I still had the wind in my face and 2) I wouldn't have been able to keep up with him at those speeds anyway. Think I hung on for about 2 miles.
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Re: The official cycling thread

Post by Seez »

How cool is this:

http://road.cc/content/feature/63359-ex ... arge-do-it

What were those things called in Star Trek that would knock you up a cheese burger or whatever?
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DOB
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Re: The official cycling thread

Post by DOB »

Seez wrote:How cool is this:

http://road.cc/content/feature/63359-ex ... arge-do-it

What were those things called in Star Trek that would knock you up a cheese burger or whatever?
Replicators I think?

I was starting to wonder what had happened to titanium bikes. Pretty much all the bikes I'm seeing now are either Carbon (expensive level) or Aluminium (mid-lower range), with the occasional frame still built out of steel. Am I missing something, or is Ti not now as common as you would've thought it would be by now?
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Re: The official cycling thread

Post by Apposite »

DOB wrote:
Seez wrote:How cool is this:

http://road.cc/content/feature/63359-ex ... arge-do-it

What were those things called in Star Trek that would knock you up a cheese burger or whatever?
Replicators I think?

I was starting to wonder what had happened to titanium bikes. Pretty much all the bikes I'm seeing now are either Carbon (expensive level) or Aluminium (mid-lower range), with the occasional frame still built out of steel. Am I missing something, or is Ti not now as common as you would've thought it would be by now?
My understanding is that it is very expensive and time-consuming to machine/weld. Aluminium offers a slightly inferior strength to weight ratio (for frames) but greater stiffness and lower cost. At the higher end of the market CF offers better strength and stiffness but lighter weight.

I think Ti is still desirable for some MTB and touring applications where you want immense strength plus a little give.
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Re: The official cycling thread

Post by DOB »

I googled it, and it seems there are some dedicated Ti builders out there, but it doesn't seem to be a common thing. In fact, any google reference to Ti and bikes seems to bring up the EADS/Charge link above.

I do seem to recall seeing various Ti parts available, bars, seatposts etc, which would lend to the idea that since it's difficult to machine, it's fine for straightforward parts, but not so fine for more detailed components. Hence why 3D printing could be the factor that kicks it back into vogue (though, of course, CF and Al could both benefit from the same advances in the same way).
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Re: The official cycling thread

Post by Apposite »

There are quite a few manufacturers making Ti frames and as you say lots making parts.

That printing style of manufacturing is going to be amazing for the likes of aerospace, automotive, bikes etc. where we want to construct complex, high performance, lightweight parts out of expensive materials. Still, there are significant issues of speed and scale to be addressed before items made like this will have low sticker prices.
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DOB
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Re: The official cycling thread

Post by DOB »

Apposite wrote:There are quite a few manufacturers making Ti frames and as you say lots making parts.

That printing style of manufacturing is going to be amazing for the likes of aerospace, automotive, bikes etc. where we want to construct complex, high performance, lightweight parts out of expensive materials. Still, there are significant issues of speed and scale to be addressed before items made like this will have low sticker prices.
You just know that within 50 years they'll be giving away free 3D printers with every iPad, but the ink cartridges will cost more than a new car.
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Re: The official cycling thread

Post by Petej »

DOB wrote:I googled it, and it seems there are some dedicated Ti builders out there, but it doesn't seem to be a common thing. In fact, any google reference to Ti and bikes seems to bring up the EADS/Charge link above.

I do seem to recall seeing various Ti parts available, bars, seatposts etc, which would lend to the idea that since it's difficult to machine, it's fine for straightforward parts, but not so fine for more detailed components. Hence why 3D printing could be the factor that kicks it back into vogue (though, of course, CF and Al could both benefit from the same advances in the same way).
I have a titanium hard tail. Essentially Titanium is very expensive, heavier than Al and tricky to weld and machine. It is lighter than Steel and has better dampening properties than Aluminium but with decent relatively cheap prodominantly Al full suspension bikes and improved composite production it has been priced out. composites are lighter can be produced to have decent dampening properties and not much more expensive. Al is lighter and cheaper with full suspension not being so heavy and expensive anymore essentially Titanium has kind of lost its niche. That is why I think Ti bikes haven't become more common in moutain biking.

Note: this could be complete rubbish.
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DOB
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Re: The official cycling thread

Post by DOB »

Petej wrote:Note: this could be complete rubbish.
We're sitting here speculating about market forces, manufacturing processes and intricacies of bicycle design and handling, when it could be as simple as "well we were offered a job lot of Xkgs of Y-grade Al for US$Z per, and couldn't turn it down."
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Apposite
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Re: The official cycling thread

Post by Apposite »

DOB wrote:
Petej wrote:Note: this could be complete rubbish.
We're sitting here speculating about market forces, manufacturing processes and intricacies of bicycle design and handling, when it could be as simple as "well we were offered a job lot of Xkgs of Y-grade Al for US$Z per, and couldn't turn it down."
Nah, he's right.

Increasingly advanced CAD/CAM plus cheaper Al have made Al bikes lighter, cheaper, stiffer and stronger than they were. A revolution in composites made CF bikes possible, then made them lighter, cheaper, stiffer and stronger than they were. Ti got sandwiched between them in a shrinking niche.

Because it's always in demand for other applications such as automotive (where much greater strength is needed for some parts) and aerospace (where heat resistance, ductility, strength, hardness and corrosion resistance can all be important) it is never going to be a cheap material. Some of the properties I just cited make it difficult and expensive to work with.

No mystery why it was always a rare material to make bike frames from and now it's even rarer.
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Re: The official cycling thread

Post by Womack »

Seez wrote:
Womack wrote:
Seez wrote:Not using clipless? :? Next thing you'll be telling me you have hairy legs.
Hairy like a fox!

Well, not quite - I'm not a ghinge like.

I do so enjoy scalping shaved roadies with my BMX pedals, hairy legs, baggies and less-than-stellar physique. Of course, from time to time I'll pass one who's actually half-decent and will be summarily put in my place, but that's all part of The Game...
Ah, SCR. The worst thing about shaven legs is that when you scalp someone riding a hybrid or road bike when you are on Brompton or Boris Bike, they may take solace from the fact that you are probably a fairly serious rider, and thus they are not completely broken mentally. :x

Wommers, I am surprised to see that you are actually in accordance with Rule 33 on this.
:o

That's pretty much the only one I am in accordance with, although I seem to have inadvertently set up my bike in accordance with all the strictures on stem height, saddle position and so on.

Re the Brompton, a folder would be an excellent weapon for SCR, especially if you could fashion a special cycling suit out of a high-performance merino blend so that you could do your scalping in full suit and toe clips. Talking of which, I had one of those guys who just refuses to accept defeat the other day, wearing suit trousers, shirt, and tie which he was wearing in a strange dog-collar configuration. He practically shoved me out of the way at one set of lights in order to lead the pack up Tooley St. I had to admire the unhinged quality of his competitive instinct, even as I finished him off with a devastating burst of speed over London Bridge.
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Re: The official cycling thread

Post by fisgard792 »

Armchair_Superstar wrote:
Gospel wrote:
For a weekend warrior its often far more confidence inspiring to be able to move your foot off or back onto a flat pedal. A lot of MTB coaches have a preference for teaching people on flats to give them proper technique.
I can't remember the last time I saw anyone other than a fat old granny or kids riding without SPDs and I get every kind of rider passing the door as I'm situated on one of the most popular cycling routes this side of Londinium. It really is quite interesting to read the differences in thinking. Whatever works for you I guess but it's just plain daft in my view because you're giving up on so many advantages.
The only advantage you're giving up on is maybe 10% pedalling efficiency, assuming you're a decent bike handler. If you compare that to the consequences of not being able to get a foot out and back to stop yourself crashing into rocks, trees, and other solid objects, then its easy to see why people go for flats.
set of dmr v12's and some five ten impact low's give you some amount of grip,

other advantage of spuds over a juicy set of grub screwed flats is that the pedal kiss is less painful
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Re: The official cycling thread

Post by Petej »

DOB wrote:
Petej wrote:Note: this could be complete rubbish.
We're sitting here speculating about market forces, manufacturing processes and intricacies of bicycle design and handling, when it could be as simple as "well we were offered a job lot of Xkgs of Y-grade Al for US$Z per, and couldn't turn it down."
One of the most important parts of material selection is how expensive is it (particularly for short sighted company bean counters who don't see beyond the end of the financial year). For example power company A and power company B can buy a load of T91 steel from the previous company they bought it from (for slightly more) or from a new company in far east (for slightly less) both choose to buy from the cheaper producer. Power company A then fit said T91 to their power station alas half a year later it has a catastrophic failure of a pressure part while power company B hasn't fitted it but has it tested and finds it is shite. Money saved = none at all. increased power station down time = money lost. Congrats well done fuckwits.
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Re: The official cycling thread

Post by Womack »

fisgard792 wrote:
set of dmr v12's and some five ten impact low's give you some amount of grip,

other advantage of spuds over a juicy set of grub screwed flats is that the pedal kiss is less painful
That's more or less exactly what I rock on my MTB, not sure what 5.10s I've got but they are ridiculously grippy - almost too grippy, if you don't place your foot properly when setting off it can be a bit of a nuisance to shift position to something more comfortable. Not a problem to get the foot off the pedal if need be mind.

Re pedal kiss, under my anti-clipless version of the Velominati rules (which I have just this minute conceived), hideously disfigured shins and calves are something to be cherished and admired.
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Gospel
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Re: The official cycling thread

Post by Gospel »

The only advantage you're giving up on is maybe 10% pedalling efficiency
That's a figure oft' quoted for professionals who spin their legs properly. Most amateurs will derive huge benefits from using something like SPDs because they make you pedal more evenly. I suspect the nay-sayers are just afraid of getting their feet stuck and falling off. I'd be amazed if anyone who's tried them for an extended period has ever gone back to flat pedals.
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Re: The official cycling thread

Post by Womack »

Gospel wrote:I suspect the nay-sayers are just afraid of getting their feet stuck and falling off.
I don't mind admitting that's true in my case, but that's only partly it. As I keep saying, I just don't feel the need to be clipped in, and the lack of clipping in does not inhibit my enjoyment of the cycling that I do in any way, shape or form. And I may come across as delusional in this regard, but I also don't think I need to be clipped in in order to be able to pedal a bike effectively, or at least effectively enough for what I want to do with it. And in general, I take the view that if there is a weakness in my technique, I should improve myself to overcome it rather than beat it with technology. This is undoubtedly the misguided perspective of the luddite and inveterate tosser, but there we go.
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Re: The official cycling thread

Post by Petej »

Womack wrote:
Gospel wrote:I suspect the nay-sayers are just afraid of getting their feet stuck and falling off.
I don't mind admitting that's true in my case, but that's only partly it. As I keep saying, I just don't feel the need to be clipped in, and the lack of clipping in does not inhibit my enjoyment of the cycling that I do in any way, shape or form. And I may come across as delusional in this regard, but I also don't think I need to be clipped in in order to be able to pedal a bike effectively, or at least effectively enough for what I want to do with it. And in general, I take the view that if there is a weakness in my technique, I should improve myself to overcome it rather than beat it with technology. This is undoubtedly the misguided perspective of the luddite and inveterate tosser, but there we go.
Having only recently started using spds they really make a huge difference particularly on uphill sections as you smooth out your pedalling so your back tire doesn't slip so much. Admittedly I have fallen over a several times due to them (the last time I had enough time to pick a soft spot to land). Don't pull up at the traffic lights next to police car and fall into it like one of my mates did.
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Re: The official cycling thread

Post by Womack »

Yeah, I do struggle with really steep, sharp uphills on the MTB, but I refuse to accept SPDs are absolutely necessary to surmount them. Occasionally grinding to a halt, taking a pedal to the calf and having to push the rest of the way up is nature's way of telling me to MTFU and sort my shit out. Or something like that.
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Re: The official cycling thread

Post by Gospel »

Womack wrote:Yeah, I do struggle with really steep, sharp uphills on the MTB, but I refuse to accept SPDs are absolutely necessary to surmount them. Occasionally grinding to a halt, taking a pedal to the calf and having to push the rest of the way up is nature's way of telling me to MTFU and sort my shit out. Or something like that.
Hey I use SPDs and usually stack it on very steep, very tight uphill corners .. there's no accounting for bicycling talent or in my case the distinct lack of.
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Re: The official cycling thread

Post by Mat the Expat »

Gospel wrote:
The only advantage you're giving up on is maybe 10% pedalling efficiency
That's a figure oft' quoted for professionals who spin their legs properly. Most amateurs will derive huge benefits from using something like SPDs because they make you pedal more evenly. I suspect the nay-sayers are just afraid of getting their feet stuck and falling off. I'd be amazed if anyone who's tried them for an extended period has ever gone back to flat pedals.
To be fair that is bollocks.

I've ridden for years without them and whilst I like using them now, they do not give that much extra power on runs.
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Re: The official cycling thread

Post by Gospel »

Mat the Expat wrote:
Gospel wrote:
The only advantage you're giving up on is maybe 10% pedalling efficiency
That's a figure oft' quoted for professionals who spin their legs properly. Most amateurs will derive huge benefits from using something like SPDs because they make you pedal more evenly. I suspect the nay-sayers are just afraid of getting their feet stuck and falling off. I'd be amazed if anyone who's tried them for an extended period has ever gone back to flat pedals.
To be fair that is bollocks.

I've ridden for years without them and whilst I like using them now, they do not give that much extra power on runs.
They provide stability and stop your feet bouncing off the pedals which can be a f**king disaster. Do you know of any pro-riders who still use flat pedals?
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DOB
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Re: The official cycling thread

Post by DOB »

I'd call 10% a conservative estimate of the difference clip-in pedals make.

Fuckit, I'd say stiff soled shoes over runners/street shoes would make that much difference at least, before you get into the effect of the clips. And I've found there's a level of acceleration available when you can power on the back/upstroke as well as the downstroke that obviously wouldn't be available with a flat pedal. I used to strain on the straps of my toe clips back in the day too; being tied/clipped/bolted to the pedal definitely gives you more go-forward. A lot more.
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Re: The official cycling thread

Post by Bindi »

The benefit of being attached to your pedals is immense. Anyone who says otherwise needs to man the fudge up and learn to use them properly. You simply cannot accelerate nearly as fast without them. Add in less rotational weight + a stiff set of carbon-soled shoes and you waste no energy whatsoever. I use them for everything - from downhill racing to road. Dirt jumping is the only thing I would avoid (not that I do it anyway).
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Re: The official cycling thread

Post by farmerdave »

One of the benefits for me as a old amateur is that on sections with a steep drop, usually to a riverbed round here, I can still shit myself but I don't inadvertently start flailing my feet in the air. I hate heights and some of these are just to much.
Heaps more comfortable on long rides.
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Re: The official cycling thread

Post by Armchair_Superstar »

Gospel wrote:
Mat the Expat wrote:
Gospel wrote:
The only advantage you're giving up on is maybe 10% pedalling efficiency
That's a figure oft' quoted for professionals who spin their legs properly. Most amateurs will derive huge benefits from using something like SPDs because they make you pedal more evenly. I suspect the nay-sayers are just afraid of getting their feet stuck and falling off. I'd be amazed if anyone who's tried them for an extended period has ever gone back to flat pedals.
To be fair that is bollocks.

I've ridden for years without them and whilst I like using them now, they do not give that much extra power on runs.
They provide stability and stop your feet bouncing off the pedals which can be a f**king disaster. [img]Do%20you%20know%20of%20any%20pro-riders%20who%20still%20use%20flat%20pedals?[/img]
A lot of top downhillers still ride flat pedals regularly, Sam Hill dominated the World Cup scene on them, Brook MacDonald recently won a World Cup stage on them. To race, most of the top downhillers wear SPDs because they give them a very slight speed advantage

As for being afraid of getting your feet stuck and falling off, that is exactly why I use flats for downhill. If you're clipped in on rough ground, you're going down with your ship. I far prefer being able to get a foot out and back in again without thinking about it.

If you need clips to stop your feet coming off the pedals then you need to work on your technique.
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Mat the Expat
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Re: The official cycling thread

Post by Mat the Expat »

Bindi wrote:The benefit of being attached to your pedals is immense. Anyone who says otherwise needs to man the fudge up and learn to use them properly. You simply cannot accelerate nearly as fast without them. Add in less rotational weight + a stiff set of carbon-soled shoes and you waste no energy whatsoever. I use them for everything - from downhill racing to road. Dirt jumping is the only thing I would avoid (not that I do it anyway).
You are talking to an ex courier and BMX jumper.

I used toe straps with loose bindings for the first. Never bound when jumping.

Just because everyone clips in doesn't make it the default route - we are not all pros, just cyclists.
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