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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
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Well I am sure that there is a thread here somewhere regarding this but..
I have an XC rider for around 11 or 12 years now. I started seriously riding with a 1996 ProFlex Beast with platform pedals. After it was stolen, I bought my 2001 K2Razorback. It came with clip pedals and shoes so I gave it a try. After 5 minutes I shattered my right wrist and vowed to never ride clips again. Up until October of 09' I was on platform pedals, I rode great and kept up to everyone, often being up front, I hardly ever crashed, had no major injuries, and was very comfortable. But... I was getting tired of being questioned and somewhat ridiculed that I was the "only" guy in the group on platforms, so I went ahead and purchased some nice pedals and shoes just to give it a second chance and to see how my riding ability would be "drastically improved" as I was told by numerous riders (including my son). Well, since October, I have crashed at least 5 times very hard and have been hurt in some fashion, once even with a serious concussion and I have gone over the bars more times than I can count. In almost every case I was not able to get out of my pedals, even on the loosest settings. I was really getting pretty used to the clip pedals finally, but this past weekend I decided to go back out with my platforms on. It was a muddy, cold day and knew that I would need to be on and off the pedals quite a bit just because of the extreme technical nature of the trail. As soon as we left the parking lot though, I instantly felt much more confident on my bike, I did not crash or even get close to crashing and was actually able to clean a large section of a very technical trail that I had NEVER been able to before. I am now convinced that that pedals alone will NOT make you a better rider. I have decided at least for now that I will continue to ride with my platforms with a smile on my face. I would love to see what others opinions are regarding this.
 

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My opinion...

My opinion is that you should break up your posts with some white space. Paragraphs are your friend.

I didn't read your post but the answer is:

Ride what you like and like what you ride.
 

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After a couple years of hearing how I need clippless I finaly did it over a year ago.I ride 4 times a week or so over pretty rugged trail.In my whole time of riding clippless I think I can remember one little fall over while my rear tire slipped out on a steep uphill.That was about 6 months after useing them.I could never go back.
Most of the people I know that have a hard time a re useing cheap pedals.Try some Shimano spds.I use the 520s.Work great and are cheap.If it works out you can try Crank Brothers or Times.I am staying with what I have but I have friends that like the others.Cheap pedals can make you want to go back but once you get used to them clipless are really great.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
I was using brand new Shimano SPD 520's and they were set nice and loose. I also ride with another guy that refuses to go clipless and he is the fastest rider in our entire group. I thought the clipless pedals would really help but they did not help me, actually went the other way and I was not nearly as comfortable.
 

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From the sounds of it you didn't learn to ride clipless pedals before taking them out.

For me it probably took 15-20 easy rides; paved multi-use trails, road, etc before I felt comfortable riding clipless on even the least technical single track. Even before that I spent quite a bit of time leaning up against a wall in my living room practicing clipping/un-clipping.

In any case if you don't feel comfortable don't ride them. But for me the confidence of being attached to the bike when I need it makes me a more confident rider.
 

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I'm SUCH a square....
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It's a matter of personal choice; some, like already posted here, prefer platforms. Others, like me, prefer clipless.

Started out with Wellgo SPD clones; they rode well enough, no problems. Had fallover issues 2x, neither caused anything but a scrape or two. Between the Wellgo's and a set of 515's, there was a week or so when I was forced back onto platforms.

Never again.

I'm on Time ATAC now, and they are the BEST pedals I've ever used. I don't expect, or even want to try, to change anyone's mind. When you're riding, you're better off than the walking dead couch potatoes who think you have to own/drive a gas hog to be a man. So ride what suits you. As long as you ride.

You'll never hear from me about riding platforms. You're riding, that's good enough!

The ride leader on the two Rides of Silence in my town rides a fat-tire Cannondale... with flats. He's the only one of the group who never puts a foot down during the entire ride. Props to him.
 

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...a wiggle theres a way
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i use clips in the spring and summer (when its warmer)

platforms in the early spring, late fall and all of winter because they allow me to wear boots and something that has insulation.

in your case sounds like it would be far better for you to roll platforms -
i would honestly stop worrying what other people think and if they give you sh*t about it show them that you can do everything they can and probably better -(what comes instantly to mind is bunny hopping, balance, tricks etc...)

anyways keep on riding and most importantly ENJOY the ride

cheers
joe
 

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I'm a newie to clip-ins as is my teenage son; as of 3 weeks ago in fact.

I've had a couple of crashes because of them, mostly due to the fear of getting caught in them; once I just forgot and put the wrong foot down.
I'm just sorting that fear business out now. I liked platforms as I watched my mates crash repeatedly from being clipped in (we're all fairly new to biking btw).

Now though I love the clips... they are better on climbs, downhill, flat.
Switchbacks bother me but I started sorting that yesterday thanks to advice from someone.... he told me his wife had trouble on rh corners but not lh ones. I was the same.

My son has had them for 6-7 rides (they've all been hard technical off-road) and has improved out of sight. He likes to learn the hard way and didn't want to start easy.

His climbing has improved dramatically, yesterday cleaning all of the three climbs we did except for 3 rock steps. He's had crashes too.....low speed ones. Couldn't unclip.

I've sprayed our pedals with dewatering fluid. Even though they were as loose as possible they still took some effort to release quickly before that.

I'm not sure if it's good or not but it saved me a few times yesterday. Unclipping is much easier now.

I decided a month ago after watching good riders climbing in clips that mechanically they have to be better than platforms, they take up less track room and that I was going to make them work for me......straight away (I was wrong about that bit).

If you really don't want them that's ok too.
It's your body. But if you can give them another shot maybe it'll be worth doing.
 

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Elitest thrill junkie
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Lugi said:
I was using brand new Shimano SPD 520's and they were set nice and loose. I also ride with another guy that refuses to go clipless and he is the fastest rider in our entire group. I thought the clipless pedals would really help but they did not help me, actually went the other way and I was not nearly as comfortable.
It sounds like you are not going to a grassy field and spending time practing entry and exit. This is akin to buying a new porsche 911 turbo and taking it out on the racetrack as your first "drive". You are going to kill yourself.
 

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one sick puppy
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You are a mountain biker. We don't care what people say about us. Road bikers care about that stuff. The answer to your question is easy. Clipless = Crash and owwees
Flats=fun ride I had the same problem and I love my 5-10's and flat pedals.
 

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Just a flesh wound
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We are mountain bikers (not cyclists)

Do what works for you. I love being clipped in. If the free heel works for you then kick some large hairy butt and go fast.

I ski with teli folks and we get along... Baskets are dead!
 

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"I am now convinced that that pedals alone will NOT make you a better rider. I have decided at least for now that I will continue to ride with my platforms with a smile on my face. I would love to see what others opinions are regarding this."

Of course pedals alone will not make you a better rider. Clipless, and knowing how to use them instinctively, probably would. But if clipless pedals don't work for you, then don't worry about it and it doesn't sound like you need them anyway. If you're happy with flats, then stick with them.
 

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Ken, the Paragraph Nazi strikes again. :D (all this white space is for you)

Lugi, ride whatever is comfortable and ride it well. Care less about what you hear.

When you have tried clipless, it sounds like you were trying to move your feet in the same patterns that you do with platforms.

I am experiencing something similar as I have recently gone from straps to clipless. Dabbing a foot from the strap is different motion than dabbing from the clipless. I have gone over a time or two in a couple rides, almost panicking because my foot won't come loose in the way I have trained it over the years.

I have decided that I will change pedals as needed while I get better with the clipless--straps on my more technical rides and the clipless on easier and more familiar trails. I'll try the complete transition when I feel ready.
 

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i am considering being new to clipless also. looking at crankbrothers mallet style pedal. clipless with a plat form. that way i can be unclipped and still have enough surface area to pedal. does anyone go this route? how well does it work.
didnt mean to jack your thread.... just thought it could help.
 

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Elitest thrill junkie
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deli152 said:
i am considering being new to clipless also. looking at crankbrothers mallet style pedal. clipless with a plat form. that way i can be unclipped and still have enough surface area to pedal. does anyone go this route? how well does it work.
didnt mean to jack your thread.... just thought it could help.
Once again, unclipping during the technical or rough sections is a SURE WAY TO CRASH. It means you lack the confidence and skills to ride through the section. Clipless pedals give you MORE control and stability in such situations, and unclipping deceases that control, clipless pedals with platforms are NOT intended to be ridden unclipped, and you are significantly INCREASING your chances of crashing. Learn how to use whatever clipless pedals you want. Also, any decent clipless pedal will clip you in if you're standing on it centered, that's kind of the point of it, so either the cleat will ride on some part of metal (not great traction) or it will "fall" into the recepticle and "clip-in". You also can't really choose to leave the cleat-shoes at home and ride these pedals with tennis shoes or something, this is because the mechanism protrudes up in the middle of the pedal, making it impossible to get any kind of decent traction. It's ok to ride a block or something, but not on a mountain bike ride. I'm not a fan of the mallets for several reasons, including the fact that I broke them, but if you want a bigger platform such as on a mallet, shimano 545, 647, or time Z, then realize that the purpose for this is stability and ease of finding the pedal and clipping back in when necessary. It's also good to have a bigger pedal in the unlikely situation that you may unclip while riding unintentionally, but again they are not intended to be ridde unclipped, especially when you're trying to control the bike in challenging terrain.
 

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Jayem said:
Once again, unclipping during the technical or rough sections is a SURE WAY TO CRASH.
thanks... that was the info i was looking for.

again...sorry for the thread jack.
 

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Here's what I wrote the last time this came up

Nearly every group ride I show up to, "why don't you try clipless, it's so much better, efficiency blah blah blah." I too am really not all that in to the clipless thing. I've been the first one up the hill and I've been the last too. I've tried them maybe 10 rides or so now. They put me in a bad mood. I ride bikes to get out of bad moods. Just like you, time passes and I look at them again and say, "ok, another shot, can't be that bad'. I'm not gaining efficiency by walking up any technical uphill sections I would normally attempt on flats.

I have done one ride clipped in that was steep fire road for the entire length and enjoyed them on that. Did another one where it was just simple buff singletrack where either would have been ok, and enjoyed them on that too. It's in the rocks that I feel they are going to be the cause of an injury for me.

If you don't know already, 5.10's with flats is where it's at. Somewhere in between skate shoes and clipped in is what it's like. At first they feel weird because your foot is stuck wherever you put it down on the pedal, but they do allow you to turn circles to a certain degree, as well as bail or dab when it goes bad.

For DH, I would never ride clipless, but there are those who do. Honestly, I'd like to be proficient at both, but the clipless may be awhile for me.
 

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i dont think anyone else has said this.. but i like different pedals for different bikes. beaters for the HT and flats for the FS.. ive had too many slips on the hard tail going through a tech section with some speed. oh and when my shoes get wet i panic. The fs soaks up the bumps so your foot keeps better contact with the flat pedal. make sense?
 
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