SPDs on a Road Bike?

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  • SPDs on a Road Bike?
  • munrobiker
    Member

    I find on a road bike that if I use small MTB pedals I get a lot of pain focused in the middle of my feet- due, I assume, to a smaller contact area and a lack of constant body change position as on the mountain bike. So I use proper road SPDs and find them much better for the pain, as well as feeling (not neccessarily being) more efficient.

    fubar
    Member

    Most of my riding is commuting, transport or social –

    If I was you I’d stick with mountain bike style if you haven’t suffered with hot / pressure spots on your feet. I did suffer and so swapped to road pedals. I find single sided pedals a bit of a pain when in traffic, starting at temporary lights etc.

    Premier Icon GrahamS
    Subscriber

    I find on a road bike that if I use small MTB pedals I get a lot of pain focused in the middle of my feet- due, I assume, to a smaller contact area

    I could see that being an issue with EggBeaters or the like but with my Mallets the contact area is huge – it’s like using a flat pedal with a cleat in the middle to hold you on.

    Premier Icon mboy
    Subscriber

    I favoured a pair of Crank Bros Mallets like you first, until I got fed up with Crank Bros reliability and then went back to some Shimano M530’s. This was when I was using a road bike more like you describe.

    These days I only really go out on the road bike for a proper road ride every so often. I bought some Look Keo Max 2’s off a friend that had gone over to Shimano’s on all his bikes, and a pair of Sidi shoes, and I really like them. Wouldn’t say it’s night and day in terms of efficiency, but they’re more comfortable on a long ride and my average speeds have gone up (very slightly mind).

    That said, come winter, the MTB SPD’s will be back on as I can use my Shimano Goretex boots that way! And if I was mainly still commuting, or transport otherwise, I’d probably revert back to some platform type SPD’s quite quickly as MTB shoes are so much easier to walk in!

    trail_rat
    Member

    Where as i got the same pains in the centre of my feet with my road shoes ( normal spd) and when i moved the cleats on them to the correct position it went away.

    Poor cleat position n spds will be magnified on a road bike to to limited movements during riding.

    Premier Icon mboy
    Subscriber

    I could see that being an issue with EggBeaters or the like but with my Mallets the contact area is huge – it’s like using a flat pedal with a cleat in the middle to hold you on.

    People used to question why I used a, in their words, “Freeride pedal” on my road bike… My answer was precisely as you describe! They may not be light, but hot spots aren’t an issue…

    Premier Icon portlyone
    Subscriber

    I use SPDs on my road bike and not had any hot spot issues, I only do 60 miles at most though.

    I find it handy since I ride with SPDs on my MTB too (well, one of them).

    trail_rat
    Member

    If your “freeride” pedal had any effect on hotspots it was due to crapy flexy shoes.

    Even mt41s dont flex that much.

    My m300s are niticably stiffer

    My aldi shoes i once had – they flexed

    I think the efficiency/hotspot issues will depend on the sort of shoes just as much as the type of pedal.

    IME, unless you are racing, there isn’t a lot of difference between a stiff soled XC racing shoe on SPDs and a road shoe on LOOK.

    organic355
    Member

    did you say its a CX bike?

    Then just get normal spds, road pedals would look daft on that.

    cheap shimano M520’s will be fine

    Plenty of people in the club use SPD’s, I far prefer roadie (shimano SPD-SL) style pedals though.

    MTB shoes/cleats are far better if you hve to do any walking through.

    Incidentaly I’ve just gone from CB to shimano on my MTB after destroying a £70 set of candy’s in 5 months.

    Edit: missed the CX bike bit, don’t try and use road pedals off road, they clog with mud in 30s flat.

    tonyd
    Member

    I wouldn’t get road cleats/shoes if you’re mostly commuting and socialising. Road cleats aren’t particularly practical when it comes to walking around.

    I commute with road shoes/cleats but leave some flip flops in my bike locker for the 300m walk to the office.

    Premier Icon GrahamS
    Subscriber

    My shoes are/were Specialized Body Geometry MTB ones (with laces and proper grip on the sole) – they aren’t flexy, but certainly not stiff by road standards. I can walk normally in them, which I like!

    did you say its a CX bike?

    Aye, with discs and 28mm tyres too, so I’m not too worried about meeting the roadie “rules” 😀


    (note: yes the saddle height has been increased since this photo was taken 🙂 )

    Toasty
    Member

    Using touring pedals on my road bike:

    http://www.chainreactioncycles.com/Models.aspx?ModelID=28051

    Shimano MTB cleats, single sided, thin, light, road style pedals. There’s an A530 and A600 too, the top being 280 odd grams per pair, which isn’t far off Dura Ace road pedals.

    missnotax
    Member

    I have spd’s on my road bike, basically because i’ve got a few pairs of mtb shoes and it makes it all transferable. I’m not racing on my road bike so the few extra grams or whatever doesn’t bother me!

    Premier Icon GrahamS
    Subscriber

    missed the CX bike bit, don’t try and use road pedals off road, they clog with mud in 30s flat.

    I don’t actually do an “real” CX (yet) – but I do ride bridleways, towpaths etc

    I wouldn’t get road cleats/shoes if you’re mostly commuting and socialising. Road cleats aren’t particularly practical when it comes to walking around.

    I guess the trouble is I want the best of both worlds without having to change pedals and shoes when I go for a more serious road ride.

    Clearly n+1 is the correct answer 😀

    fasthaggis
    Member

    The closest I got to road pedals

    IME ..Get a good stiff soled pair of shoes and pedal size is less of a problem with regards to hot spots.

    Premier Icon zilog6128
    Subscriber

    I find single sided pedals a bit of a pain when in traffic, starting at temporary lights etc.

    Speedplay. Double sided, dead comfy, no hotspots, as easy to clip out of and almost as easy to clip into as SPDs.

    Premier Icon GrahamS
    Subscriber

    Get a good stiff soled pair of shoes and pedal size is less of a problem with regards to hot spots.

    Okay – so can anyone recommend some SPD-compatible shoes with good stiff soles that look “normal” enough to happily wear on a casual ride to the pub where non-cycling humanoids may be present?

    Toasty
    Member

    http://www.bikeradar.com/mtb/gear/category/clothing/shoes/product/review-bontrager-ssr-multisport-trail-shoes-12-46399

    Wearing a pair of those at work right now, getting far less odd looks than I used to get in proper disco slippers.

    Premier Icon zilog6128
    Subscriber

    There are a lot of shoes that look like nerdy hiking shoes (like those Bonts above) or space-age trainers (like the 661 Filter) but very little in between.

    I really like the look of DZR shoes https://www.dzrshoes.com/shoes but they are bloomin’ expensive for what they are IMO.

    fubar
    Member

    Speedplay. Double sided, dead comfy, no hotspots, as easy to clip out of and almost as easy to clip into as SPDs.

    I’ve been considering making the move to speedplay…think they might be my birthday pressie this year

    Premier Icon GrahamS
    Subscriber

    My name is Graham, I’m currently running some original Crank Bros Mallet Cs on my (CX) road bike and.. and.. well.. I like them.

    There, I said it.

    But those Mallets are getting pretty ancient now, as are my shoes which are slowly splitting apart at the cleat, so it is probably about time for something new.

    So do I seek out a similar MTB-style SPD system (possibly modern Mallets, or Time Atac) or do I take the plunge and get some silly clippy-cloppy roadie shoes?

    Most of my riding is commuting, transport or social – but I do put in longer road rides too. I did a 150-odd mile 3-day road ride in the Highlands in the Mallets and didn’t feel they held me back particularly.

    Pros Of My Current Mallets:
    – they support a large area of my foot (all the platform touches show) so they are nice and comfy, without the need for ultra-stiff soles.
    – I get to wear normal-ish looking shoes that I can happily wear and walk in when I go to the pub, cafe, shops, park etc
    – I can walk up the five flights of stairs when I get to work without wearing out my cleats.

    Disadvantages
    – less efficient?
    – heavier
    – look a little odd on full-lycra days
    – not Pro

    Any thoughts from the mind? Does anyone else favour MTB-style pedals on the road? What you riding with?

    m1kea
    Member

    With regards hot foot, I’m the other way. I’ve been using Look pedals for over 20 years on my road bikes and originally SPDs on the MTB’s but I’ve been on Egg shoeeaters for the past four years.

    I’ve never suffered with hot foot when MTBing but occasionally do with the road.

    Odd

    Anyhoo, as someone with four pairs of road shoes and two pairs of MTB,I’d say stick with MTB shoes and pedals.

    crikey
    Member

    I’ve always used road pedals for road and spds for anything off road, mountain biking and ‘cross, but I’d be happy using spds on the road.

    I think the example of Andy Wilkinson is the best advert for using what you want;

    http://www.cyclingweekly.co.uk/news/latest/538831/andy-wilkinson-s-dolan-time-trial-bike.html

    mogrim
    Member

    I use Time Atacs on my road bike, mainly as that’s what I’ve got on my mtb. Can’t say I’ve ever noticed hot spots, and I’ve done 200km+ rides with them. I do use “proper” xc shoes though.

    stevious
    Member

    Have just made the change from SPDs to SPD-SL on my roadbike for reasons too boring to go into. HEre are my thoughts:

    – The shoe/pedal combo are lighter, which is nice.
    – Feet feel a bit more ‘locked in’ when sprinting.
    – Cleat position is more sensitive because there is less float.
    – They are a wee bit harder to clip/unclip so if you do change expect a slight learning curve.
    – They feel more efficient, probably as a result of some kind of bike placebo.
    – Don’t do a bike race on them the third time you ride with them. Getting dropped at the start of the race because you can’t clip in properly does not make you feel like a hero.

    brakes
    Member

    I use Crank Bros Candies off and on road. Got a nice pair of Giro shoes with an Easton Carbon(ish) soul and don’t get pain anywhere – even on 100 mile rides. They’re strong enough for MTB, strong enough for fixie riding up steep hills at 30rpm. Comfortable enough for walking round the shops.
    Not sure they fit your wants for looking passable in polite company though.

    jamiea
    Member

    Tick from me too. I’ve SPDs on the hardtail and commuter and put the wife’s unwanted pair on the roadie I got in earlier this year. Will probably switch in the future but its fine so far, have only done one ride over 50 miles but no issues with hot spots. I’ll get a stiffer, SPD & SPD-SL compatible shoe in the near future- I’m using a pair of Shimano M075s at the mo.

    Cheers,
    Jamie

    LMT
    Member

    I run candys on my road bike and my mtb, i use speshi bg shoes for the road bike and the storm trooper shimano on the mtb. Using the same cleats on all shoes means i can swap and change and tbh ive got good use out of my candys. If it works then why change.

    Creg
    Member

    I’m running some Shimano A530’s with Spesh Body Geometry MTB shoes on my road bike which I am using for commuting.

    I wanted some proper road shoes but I have to walk up a rough, steep gravel driveway at work which according to the shop would destroy the shoes. Shame as I have some unused new Time iClic 2 Carbons here which are sat doing nothing.

    They seem OK so far, however I am suffering from cleat burn and eventually numbness in my left foot on longer rides (although I think that is coming from clenching my toes when I ride, no idea why I do it)

    drlex
    Member

    I really like the look of DZR shoes https://www.dzrshoes.com/shoes but they are bloomin’ expensive for what they are IMO.

    They’re sometimes on offer – sport pursuit had them recently. Bought a pair last year to replace some ancient Answers to commute in and they’ve been excellent; sometimes wear them all day at work. As usual, convert £ to $ should you be travelling to the U.S.

    persona
    Member

    +

    WTF are hotspots?

    Premier Icon zilog6128
    Subscriber

    They’re sometimes on offer – sport pursuit had them recently

    really? Dammit! Normally scour the SP emails pretty thoroughly. I really want some DZR shoes but no way am I paying that kind of money just to look a bit more normal in the pub!

    stevious
    Member

    Oh, just remembered an advantage of SPD=SL over SPDs: Having a plastic cleat instead of a metal one means you get less of a ‘heat sink’ effect so it’s easier to keep your toes warm. Which is nice.

    antigee
    Member

    missnotax – Member

    I have spd’s on my road bike, basically because i’ve got a few pairs of mtb shoes and it makes it all transferable. I’m not racing on my road bike so the few extra grams or whatever doesn’t bother me!

    same here plus I like to be able to walk into a public convenience and not slide the length of the facility
    even have those ones that look pedals on one side on my cx at moment as ride to school with little un and means I don’t have to go looking for shoes to ride for 15mins – function over style

    cynic-al
    Member

    SPDs on my road bikes always (15 years, including tours, winter training, road races).

    I’ve never felt any pressure from the cleat at all (I am using carbon soled shoes though).

    For commuting I wouldn’t consider anything else, though I do use cage-side/spd-sid pedals (PDM324 IIRC) pedals so I can use normal shoes too.

    Premier Icon mikewsmith
    Subscriber

    I use candies on my road bike with Spec Shoes, work fine but the shoe is stiff anyway. I have mallets on the mountain bike but I am venturing back to candies and stiffer shoes.

    Current mallets/candies can be rebuilt really easily so I’m happy with them.

    m1kea
    Member

    Persona

    Hot spots are painful pressure points, typically on the ball of the foot.

    Can be caused by a variety of things, flexing soles, tight toe box etc.

    Last month I spent 9 hours in the saddle riding the Evans King of the Downs sportive without any issues. A couple of weeks later I got foot cramps two hours in on a flatish ride. Weird.

    _tom_
    Member

    I switched to SPD SL and apart from it being much easier to clip in/out I haven’t really noticed much difference. SPD SL cleats don’t seem as adjustable and I still can’t get my right one as far back as I’d like but think I’ve got used to it now.

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