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  1. #1
    Platforms For Life
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    Pedal rant, my opinion matters!

    I've been riding for about a year now. I like to consider myself all-mountain. I started off with a stock Trek 4500 Hardtail which had some generic cage pedals I rode on, after a few times cutting up my shins from a few molecules of moisture getting on my pedals I decided to go clipless, bout the eggbeater SL's and some sweet Specialized Shoes.
    The difference between clipless and cage pedals was immediately apparent, in uphill sections I could really apply the power and found myself hopping off the bike and making the walk of shame a lot less often. As I became a better rider I paid less attention to my feet being stuck on my pedals and more attention on gracefully navigating the trails, and conserving energy so I could flow all the way around the trails without having to stop and sweat breathe hard. Wait what? I am an all-mountain rider, but I felt as if I was becoming XC and I couldn't figure out why I was getting more skilled, to become more boring. Well I found a solution...
    This is a stupid reason to try anything! But I noticed in a lot of bike porn that the people doing really cool ****, were almost always riding platforms. Ok whatever, what's the harm in trying that for a while. I purchase some Crank Brothers 5050 XX's in gold(because they are pimp), and some FiveTen Impact 2 lowtops.
    Upon hitting the same trails that I rode with the eggbeaters, it was as if I just got unplugged from the Matrix, and was seeing the real world for the first time! I guess somewhere in my subconscious was a minute level of fear that would keep me from trying to ride hard. Now that I am on the 5050's, I corner like I am furious at the dirt, and I want to put my tires to the test. I push off small jumps as hard as I can, and ponder in mid-air, who would make such a small gay dirt jump? I go into my big ring and pedal hard on whatever downhills I come across. I will attempt to bunny hop anything, and am no longer afraid of catching my back wheel and falling(like I have in the past.) And the best thing of all? I like to personally challenge myself to see how long I can go without touching the brake levers, did you know you don't actually have to break for half the **** you think you have to hit the brakes for? I didn't, until now.

    I doubt you really read that wall of text, but if you did. The message is simple. For me at least. If you want to push your aggressive riding to the limits. Try platforms. Don't just ride clipless because everybody else does, give them both a shot. I mean, what's the harm in trying something new? You can always ebay your used pedals if you don't like them. The freedom to bail, or put your foot down at ANY TIME can set you free!

    "If you wanna play blindman, go walk with the shepard. But me? My eyes are now wide f**king open!"
    2008 GT Force 3.0
    2009 Bianchi Pista fixie

  2. #2
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    I'm with you I guess it just comes down to a personal choice but I ride platforms so just too be free and have the ability to shift my feet around where as being clipped in you don't have that option. For me it works better but to someone else it may not but like you said just try different things and find the sweet spot in my opinion there is no hard fast rule on gear or equipment to do any task just have fun.

  3. #3
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    I heard that guy gee atherton, no wait, maybe steve pea....nono, it was greg minnar, I heard that guy rode clipless alot, I guess he rides pretty aggressively.

    At any rate, glad that you're enjoying flats, I go back and forth, but its definitely possible to ride aggressively with clipless

  4. #4
    mtbr member
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    Platforms + Impacts =

  5. #5
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    I like platforms on downhills, but climbing up rocky stair steps clipless pedals give me way more ability to drive my foot over the top of the stroke, and pull the bike up with me.

    On platforms I dabbed on more uphills from my foot flying off the pedal. And on my 647 pedals, I can dab almost as effortlessly as platforms(using the multi-release cleat)

  6. #6
    Platforms For Life
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    Changed my avatar so everybody knows I mean business
    2008 GT Force 3.0
    2009 Bianchi Pista fixie

  7. #7
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    OP- You could also try some platform/ clipless combo pedals.
    roccowt.
    rocnbikemeld

  8. #8
    mtbr member
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    Confidence and the perception of safety make you go faster. Most people don't understand why i ride with these water wings, but i guess you do.

  9. #9
    local trails rider
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    Quote Originally Posted by zarr
    OP- You could also try some platform/ clipless combo pedals.
    I don't think so: they are not really good as either platform or clipless.

    My solution:
    clipless on the tough singlespeed hardtails, flats on the stupidly heavy geared FS bike.

  10. #10
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    clipless is the shiznit.

  11. #11
    UK Bike Whore
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    I ride both I like my 50/50s for fun short rides and DH but when on longer rides I put on my m647s. I think both have their uses.

  12. #12
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    so you cant ride clipless pedals and therefore think they suck? that really doesnt make sense.

    sounds like you just bailed on it too soon. you lacked the confidence to get the advantage of clipless pedals.. not really the pedals fault.

  13. #13
    Sheffield,South Yorkshire
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    I ride all the stuff clipless that my riding buds ride on flats.Clipless don't suit everyone,neither do flats.I personally feel naked if not clipped in especially on the really rocky technical downs.
    Horses for courses i suppose.

  14. #14
    mtbr member
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    Quote Originally Posted by Halfrican
    The freedom to bail, or put your foot down at ANY TIME can set you free!
    Um, It's EASY to bail, or put your foot down at ANY TIME, with clipless.

    Enjoy your platforms.

  15. #15
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    Maybe you didn't enjoy your clipless because you were on eggbeaters. SPD's allow some tension adjustability which is good for people new to clipless.

  16. #16
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    I tried and liked clipless (SPD), but found that it gave me knee pain. I typically do triathlon stuff because I also enjoy running and swimming, but more than that, it spreads out the damage to other parts of my body.

    Ultimately I decided that grippy narrow platforms (Tioga Spyder) with a grippy stiff-sole shoe (trying 5.10s soon) might be best for me in everyday training. But then, I'm different.

    For races, I use clipless.
    ***

  17. #17
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    That's funny, I could have posted this exact same thread about switching TO clipless pedals. I know that feeling of being uncorked now that I'm not worried about being bounced off the bike if I make a mistake.

    Enjoy the ride!

  18. #18
    Platforms For Life
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    Quote Originally Posted by keiichi189
    That's funny, I could have posted this exact same thread about switching TO clipless pedals. I know that feeling of being uncorked now that I'm not worried about being bounced off the bike if I make a mistake.

    Enjoy the ride!
    Funny, I like the feeling of knowing I WILL be bounced off if I make a mistake, instead of being welded to the bike.

    If you think you can get off your bike just as fast with clipless as you can with platforms, why would ANYONE ride platforms? It would be all cons and no pros.
    2008 GT Force 3.0
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  19. #19
    :\ ping of death
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    Quote Originally Posted by Halfrican
    Funny, I like the feeling of knowing I WILL be bounced off if I make a mistake, instead of being welded to the bike.

    If you think you can get off your bike just as fast with clipless as you can with platforms, why would ANYONE ride platforms? It would be all cons and no pros.
    Clearly youve never tried spd's. With a low tension and multi-release cleat, it doesnt even feel like youre clipped in. I started in 03 with flats and switched to clipless just last year and have never looked back.
    What the hell is an aluminum falcon?

  20. #20
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    On a suggestion from another thread, I switch back and forth. I must admit that I can jump with a LOT more confidence on platforms (the old BMXer in me tells me so), but when I ride clipless, I get a lot less winded on uphills, and I find I have been able to use my feet to maneuver around/over obstacles with ease. I feel more connected clipless, but when I want to go aggro, I change up to platforms.

  21. #21
    Fort Valley = Gnarl Fest
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    Quote Originally Posted by William42
    I heard that guy gee atherton, no wait, maybe steve pea....nono, it was greg minnar, I heard that guy rode clipless alot, I guess he rides pretty aggressively.

    At any rate, glad that you're enjoying flats, I go back and forth, but its definitely possible to ride aggressively with clipless
    Now how do you explain Sam Hill?

  22. #22
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    The AM forum on mtbr has the worst case of "its not me its my bike" of any forum I've ever seen. Fast people will go fast on clipless or flats. Slow people will go slow on clipless or flats.

    There are advantages to both. Its much easier to "flow" with flats, because you're forced to. I find I'm charging into rock gardens much faster, with clipless, and plowing through them much more. With flats, I flow through them. My speeds are probably roughly even - I start faster but end slower with clipless, and I maintain speed alot more with flats.

    My bike control is way better with flats. Not because I'm worried about falls, but because I can't have bad habits. Bad habits mean you get bucked off and can't control the bike. With clipless, bad habits are really easily gained and established. I can accelerate way harder with clipless though. I'd say average times down the hill are pretty similar. Up the hills, couldn't care less either way, unless my gearing is too steep and I'm forced to yank up on the pedal. If I can spin at a proper cadence though, don't really care whether its clips or flats.

    Everybody has their own preferences. If you find you like flats alot more, awesome! If you're more of a clipless person, thats cool too! Doesn't hurt to play around and try some of each.

    The people who feel uncomfortable on either are the people who never learned to use them correctly.

  23. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jekyll_Jockey
    Now how do you explain Sam Hill?
    3 out of the top 10 guys (that I know of) are on flats, and 7 of them are on clipless.

    Rennie, Kovarik, and Hill are the main "flat" users that I know of, although blenki might use them too? At any rate, like I said in the post before, fast people will go fast, slow people slow. Its a matter of preference, but there isn't one end all pedal choice.

    I'm on clipless right now, but I have a set of flats. I just lost one of my 5.10's (sitting on the back of my car and I drove off ) so I'll be on clipless for awhile. For techy stuff, I'm still definitely better with flats, but hopefully I can get there with clipless and feel just as comfortable on everything with either set!

  24. #24
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    Dude the avatar is as childish as you can get, jesus christ if you don't like/use clipless pedals you don't need to make a freaking parade out of it.
    Either way you have the freedom of bailing when you need to or put your foot down any time you need, because YOU decide when to let go, not the clips.

  25. #25
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    I thought the avatar was kinda funny. It's his opinion, and I took it as kind of a joke, anyway. I mean, if somebody were wholeheartedly serious about crusading against clipless pedals, well, their issues may run deeper than how they pedal their bike.

    But I just figured it was a tongue-in-cheek type of thing.

    MY avatar, on the other hand, is about as childish as it gets lol...

  26. #26
    Platforms For Life
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    If I find a good deal sometime down the road on some SPD's I will try them out too. I still use clipless on my hardtail, just not for all-mountain.
    2008 GT Force 3.0
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  27. #27
    I Have Cookies
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    Quote Originally Posted by Luigiugueto
    Dude the avatar is as childish as you can get, jesus christ if you don't like/use clipless pedals you don't need to make a freaking parade out of it.
    Either way you have the freedom of bailing when you need to or put your foot down any time you need, because YOU decide when to let go, not the clips.
    +1 to that......


    Well any way here is my .02$
    I think it matters a bit on where you ride and the mousture levels that you have to deal with. Where I ride The trails always have a fail ammount of wetness that we have to deal with and If I attempted them on flats I would probably have more shin scars than I can count. For us here in Hawaii and our forest trails clipless is a MUST! I think if I was in SoCal or somewhere like that I'd probably concider flats.
    The most important thing is what God thinks about it. He will have the final say.” – Joshua Stinebrink

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  28. #28
    Bicyclochondriac.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Halfrican
    The freedom to bail, or put your foot down at ANY TIME can set you free!
    But I already have that freedom with my Frogs. I drop a foot on the inside of turns all the time, and I'm back in by the bottom of the next stroke. Same with many other obstacles. I've tried going back to flats (heck, I learned on flats), and I did not find I was any more at ease than with the Frogs. I did not feel this way about the spd's I used to run, however.

    If flats works for you, go for it, but I think you need to try more kinds of clipless before you write them all off.

  29. #29
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    Uh..........For me, (oooolllddd sloooow guy).........my opinion is hey whut ever..wurks 4 YOU!! I've seen many a faster than me person (BOTH men and women) ridding in tennies and platfroms. I love my clipless 747's (got them in like '96 or so I think, still running strong).
    I'm sooo old school there were NO clipless pedals when I started all there was was toeclips and straps, or ratraps(platforms were called that back then). In fact.......one old saying was:"REAL men bike in flip-flops and laoncloth"..........never tried that setup.
    Training on Hills Builds Character, That's How I Got To Be One!

  30. #30
    backwoods and backwards
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    I would like the phrase " My opinion matters!" to be included in the title of every thread on these forums. Well..... maybe not every new thread, just the important ones. That way I'll know who I can believe and who I should ignore.
    I ride Time pedals and avoid racer type shoes.

  31. #31
    MattSavage
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    You lie!!!!

    Quote Originally Posted by Halfrican
    If I find a good deal sometime down the road on some SPD's I will try them out too.

    Your avatar says "Platforms for Life"... Make up your mind!!! Platforms for life or just until you realize that at this point you've only been riding for a year and really don't know what you're talking about and really have no frame of reference...???

    I think you should rock one platform and one clipless... Then determine which one is better from a side by side comparison...
    "I wrote a hit play! What have you ever done?!"

    Have Ashtray, Will Travel....

  32. #32
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    Quote Originally Posted by phoeneous
    Clearly youve never tried spd's. With a low tension and multi-release cleat, it doesnt even feel like youre clipped in. I started in 03 with flats and switched to clipless just last year and have never looked back.
    +1 for this statement

    I used toe clips and straps since 1985 until just a couple years ago. Then 5/10 shoes and platforms.

    I swore I would NEVER go clipless, after trying out a number of types. Now with the 647's and multi-release cleats I am very happy. I started with them very loose and have since tightened them up a fair amount, and I am not the least bit hesitant to ride anything I previously rode with platforms

  33. #33
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    I have an extra set of odyssey triple traps from a GT Mach One I used to ride. I think I even have some old Hutch rattraps too.

    I wonder if they would fit my crank arms?

    Like I said, though, I'll ride both. It doesn't matter, as long as I'm out riding!

  34. #34
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    [QUOTE=Halfrican
    If you think you can get off your bike just as fast with clipless as you can with platforms, why would ANYONE ride platforms? It would be all cons and no pros.[/QUOTE]
    Ding, Ding, we have a winner

    Now you've got it

  35. #35
    Platforms For Life
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    Quote Originally Posted by mattsavage
    Your avatar says "Platforms for Life"... Make up your mind!!! Platforms for life or just until you realize that at this point you've only been riding for a year and really don't know what you're talking about and really have no frame of reference...???

    I think you should rock one platform and one clipless... Then determine which one is better from a side by side comparison...
    That is what I do, I won't change from platforms on my all-mountain bike. I will try something inplace of the eggbeaters on my hardtail XC bike however. I do different stuff with each bike, and clipless is better for my hardtail.
    2008 GT Force 3.0
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  36. #36
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    Then make up your mind dude, this thread failed horribly lol

  37. #37
    Platforms For Life
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    I did make up my mind, this is the all-mountain forum and I will ride nothing but platforms for all-mountain. I just happen to have a hardtail I use for fitness/commute/xc as well that eggbeaters work better on. I made that clear in the last post as well.
    2008 GT Force 3.0
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  38. #38
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    Quote Originally Posted by Halfrican
    I did make up my mind, this is the all-mountain forum and I will ride nothing but platforms for all-mountain. I just happen to have a hardtail I use for fitness/commute/xc as well that eggbeaters work better on. I made that clear in the last post as well.
    So you have a different avatar for each forum?

  39. #39
    Platforms For Life
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    No, what the hell would I want to go to a commute/fitness/xc forum for? A bunch of guys in spandex talking about weight and lights.
    2008 GT Force 3.0
    2009 Bianchi Pista fixie

  40. #40
    i call it a kaiser blade
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    i'm not man enough to be able to do some of the serious climbs unless i'm clipped in.

  41. #41
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    Quote Originally Posted by navymtbkr
    I have an extra set of odyssey triple traps from a GT Mach One I used to ride. I think I even have some old Hutch rattraps too.

    I wonder if they would fit my crank arms?

    Like I said, though, I'll ride both. It doesn't matter, as long as I'm out riding!
    Triple traps are so awesome, I rode those on my bike for the last 5 years. I've recently switched to these bad boys
    http://www.backcountryoutlet.com/out...ike-Pedal.html
    and I love them as well. They are lower profile than the platform shoe-like triple traps and dont seem to bang into as many rocks
    My opinion matters!

  42. #42
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    Quote Originally Posted by Halfrican
    No, what the hell would I want to go to a commute/fitness/xc forum for? A bunch of guys in spandex talking about weight and lights.

    Oh Noes you didn't!


    Those spandex wearing, clipless, shaved legs doods could probably "out-mountain" your "all -mountain" bike and skillz. (I am most certainly serious about that).

    O'Doyle rulez and my opinion doesn't matter

  43. #43
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    Quote Originally Posted by Halfrican
    . . . I just happen to have a hardtail I use for fitness/commute/xc as well. . .
    Quote Originally Posted by Halfrican
    . . . what the hell would I want to go to a commute/fitness/xc forum for?
    Contradict yourself much?

    All biking is awesome.
    Last edited by antonio; 03-20-2009 at 08:22 AM.

  44. #44
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    Quote Originally Posted by antonio
    Contradict yourself much?

    All biking is awesome.
    The whole thread is based on contradiction lol

    And OP bashing, apparently

  45. #45
    old broken downhiller
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    Quote Originally Posted by navymtbkr
    I think I even have some old Hutch rattraps too.

    I wonder if they would fit my crank arms?
    They should be 9/16" just like your mtb pedals, I don't think Hutch even made pedals w/ 1/2" shafts. Don't ride them though, especially if they are in good condition. They're very collectable these days and are worth quite a chunk of money if they are minty.

    Pedals share one common aspect with seats and grips - they are points where you as a human interface with your bike. That makes them all matters of personal preference.

    Me personally, clipless pedals hurt my old beat up knees, and I don't like being pinned to one set foot position on the pedal. I've used them for years for the obvious performance advantages they have over flats (mainly power transfer) but these days I'm back on flats for good.

    I've never ridden a clipless pedal that had enough "float" to satisfy me, and I've never had a clipless compatible shoe that I did'nt have to take apart and modify to get the cleat to move far enough back for me. I've always had to make compromises somewhere in either the shoe or the pedal or both.

    Depends on your background also. I have a BMX background, so that in itself influences my thoughts on the matter. I've ridden on flats since the late '70's. My riding friends who have road backgrounds, they are all die-hard clipless users. Being so used to Times and Speedplays and pedals like that, they feel "disconnected" from the bike if their feet ain't attached...
    Refusing to grow up since 1978...

  46. #46
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    Quote Originally Posted by antonio
    Contradict yourself much?

    All biking is awesome.
    Not really... Like, at all. I can see wanting to make fun of the OP, because he's asking for it, but its not a contradiction at all. Saying that is like that "Isn't it Ironic" song by Alanis Morrissette song, where nothing she sings about is actually the correct use of irony.

    There is a difference between having a commuter bike (I haven't driven to work once in the past 3 years) and wanting to go talk about weight savings, spandex, and other "commuter" type subjects on an online forum. I couldn't care less about what other people are doing on and with their commuter bikes - although I think its great they're commuting by bike. I just have no desire to talk with them about it. I'm sure the OP feels the same way.

    Anyway, the XC...er, ahem, AM forum needs to man up and start riding harder. So far everybody here thinks its impossible to ride hard with clipless or flats (depending on which one they ride), and its definitely impossible to ride fast with both! One is "clearly" better.

    If you ride clipless, go out and ride flats harder then you've ever ridden before. If you ride flats, go out and rock clipless hard enough to pull two wheeled drifts in every corner. If you find yourself going faster on one or the other, barring cleat/shoe/interface problems (or if you have CB pedals) you should just go faster and push yourself harder!

  47. #47
    Platforms For Life
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    Thank you william.

    I definately haven't contradicted myself here as you said. I have TWO seperate bikes for TWO seperate purposes. I am not trying to ride hard when I take a 20mile stroll around town running errands, so I ride clipless.

    There is more pedalling power, especially noticeable in climbs. HOWEVER, when I ride the trails around here, I ride MUCH harder and have MUCH more fun on platforms. That is what my "rant" is about. Maybe you guys can ride your best with clipless, more power to you. Me? No freaking way, when my back wheel slips out on a moss covered rock or root, when I'm clipped in, I just brace for the fall because I cannot personally twist my foot off in that amount of time. If you can, awesome. I can't, and I'm aware of this subconsciously, and it affects my all-mountain riding.

    Platforms for life! -for all-mountain. Since apparently I need to clarify that...in the all-mountain forum.

    Maybe when I'm a much better rider I will never have to tap my foot down.
    2008 GT Force 3.0
    2009 Bianchi Pista fixie

  48. #48
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    Quote Originally Posted by Halfrican
    this is the all-mountain forum and I will ride nothing but platforms for all-mountain. I just happen to have a hardtail I use for fitness/commute/xc
    The rider makes the bike, not the other way around.

    My hardtail is my AM bike. My hardtail is my XC bike. Hell, my hardtail is my only bike. You are only limiting your skill by deciding not to ride clipless just because youre on an AM bike. Thats just dumb.

    Grow a pair and just ride already.
    What the hell is an aluminum falcon?

  49. #49
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    Quote Originally Posted by phoeneous
    Grow a pair and just ride already.
    Amen.

  50. #50
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    Quote Originally Posted by William42
    Not really... Like, at all. I can see wanting to make fun of the OP, because he's asking for it, but its not a contradiction at all. Saying that is like that "Isn't it Ironic" song by Alanis Morrissette song, where nothing she sings about is actually the correct use of irony.
    I see what you mean regarding my questionable use of the word.

    My original intent was to convey that it's immature to deride one "sub-group" of cyclists, especially since so many of us (like the OP), fit in several of those sub groups.

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