1. The most important thing about buying a new bike is to make sure it fits. The only way you'll know if the bike is right for you is to size up the bike and make sure that the bike's geometry matches your body's geometry. Ask questions and do some research.
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2. If possible, try to find a shop that will let you demo the bike on real dirt. Five minutes in a parking lot won't cut it. You wouldn't buy a car without a real world test drive, and a bike should be no different.
3. Don't belive the hype. Just because your favorite rider or best friend rides a certain bike, that doesn't mean that's the best one for you. Have an open mind and be realistic about your needs and ability.
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  1. #1
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    Entry level clipless pedal and shoe recommendations

    Ok, Im just getting into the sport. I purchased a DB Coil EX for only $250 at *****. A steal I figured afterlooking into a Trek. Again its a starter bike OK and my son will get it and when and if I get more serious and have already upgraded the front shock to Rock Shox 318 Solo Air and shifter/derailleurs to SRAM X7's. Still $500 bike.

    I purchased a mountain bike because I do own ATV's, Dirtbikes, and a buggy I love dirt and the outdoors. Also I enjoy working out in the gym 5 days a week and I figured why not move my workout outdoors!

    Now that you know what why Im riding, (thanks for your patience). I started riding this bike on the street and have hit my local parks for I believe is XC riding (fire roads really). I purchased old school Cradle pedals because I want to work out both my quads and hamstrings push/pull right? It seems that clipless is the way to go cause Im sure I get smerks when they see me with cradle pedals

    What do you folks recommend I start with that do not cost an arm and a leg and I do shop on fleabay alot. Thanks again for your patience and advice!!

  2. #2
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    This is just my opinion if you want to do it cheap but have some decent stuff!!

    Pedals - http://www.pricepoint.com/detail/132...y-C-Pedals.htm

    Shoes - http://www.pricepoint.com/detail/145...-MTN-Shoes.htm

  3. #3
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    I also like the Crank Brothers pedals, BUT I've been running these for 7-8 years and they still work. I've smacked these pedals on rocks and roots, ridden them in the mud, the wet, and only cleaned them once. The cage around them makes it easy to ride with or without clipless, and protects the clip mechanism when you smack it on something in the trail.

    Shimano M424 - $48: http://www.jensonusa.com/store/produ...24+Pedals.aspx

    For shoes, I'd just go to the LBS and try some on. They should have some decent shoes for under $60 that will last you many seasons. Just make sure they fit snug around the instep, but not too short in length. The worst advice I've ever been given about shoes is that I should get one 1/2 to 1 full size smaller than my normal shoes. I took those back and got shoes that were snug, but comfortable.

  4. #4
    Disgruntled Peccary
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    Quote Originally Posted by TwoHeadsBrewing
    The worst advice I've ever been given about shoes is that I should get one 1/2 to 1 full size smaller than my normal shoes. I took those back and got shoes that were snug, but comfortable.
    that sort of works for road shoes.
    mike

  5. #5
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    I've been riding for 3 months now in tennis shoes, and I am really starting to notice the flexing of the shoe when I am climbing and mashing on the pedals. This tells me that it is time to graduate out of tennis shoes to something much stiffer. Personally, I am terrified of going clipless, since I dab alot and just don't have the stamina to make most of my climbs without stopping and letting my legs rest for a few seconds.

    How easy is it to get out of these clipless pedals? The last thing I want is to keep wiping out and fall out of addiction with this sport.
    Since I don't like writing, I don't have a blog to pimp. This space for rent.

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by GrayBeard Pirate
    I've been riding for 3 months now in tennis shoes, and I am really starting to notice the flexing of the shoe when I am climbing and mashing on the pedals. This tells me that it is time to graduate out of tennis shoes to something much stiffer. Personally, I am terrified of going clipless, since I dab alot and just don't have the stamina to make most of my climbs without stopping and letting my legs rest for a few seconds.

    How easy is it to get out of these clipless pedals? The last thing I want is to keep wiping out and fall out of addiction with this sport.
    It's VERY easy, especially if you adjust the cleats correctly. On the Shimano pedals at least there is an adjustment screw for the cleat spring. If you tighten it, it will hold your foot to the pedal tighter and make it more difficult to clip out. For beginners it's best to leave it VERY loose, so that if you panic you can still pull your foot more or less straight out of the pedal.

    Actually, after years of riding clipless I still ride with mine fairly loose. Almost all of my trail riding has some dicey, slow moving sections where I need to be able to clip out at a moments notice. If you're new to clipless, just ride around the neighborhood for a while, coming to a stop and clipping out. Clip back in, ride a short distance, and then clip back in. After a few times, you'll see it's not that hard to do. You just need to be conscious of the fact that you are clipped in, which takes a few rides to get used to.

  7. #7
    Disgruntled Peccary
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    Quote Originally Posted by GrayBeard Pirate
    I've been riding for 3 months now in tennis shoes, and I am really starting to notice the flexing of the shoe when I am climbing and mashing on the pedals. This tells me that it is time to graduate out of tennis shoes to something much stiffer. Personally, I am terrified of going clipless, since I dab alot and just don't have the stamina to make most of my climbs without stopping and letting my legs rest for a few seconds.

    How easy is it to get out of these clipless pedals? The last thing I want is to keep wiping out and fall out of addiction with this sport.
    You will very likely fall a couple times due to not being able to unclip. It's really part of the learning process. That being said, it rapidly becomes second nature to kick your heel out and generally the spills are low speed stall-outs anyway. It's all about making that movement habitual.
    mike

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by GrayBeard Pirate
    I've been riding for 3 months now in tennis shoes, and I am really starting to notice the flexing of the shoe when I am climbing and mashing on the pedals. This tells me that it is time to graduate out of tennis shoes to something much stiffer. Personally, I am terrified of going clipless, since I dab alot and just don't have the stamina to make most of my climbs without stopping and letting my legs rest for a few seconds.

    How easy is it to get out of these clipless pedals? The last thing I want is to keep wiping out and fall out of addiction with this sport.
    I am in the same boat as you. Started riding last sept using flats and tennis shoes. I was also terrified of going clipless but did it anyways. Got these from jenson and a pair of Time Z from price point. I have taken three rides in them and I can honestly say I am hooked. I still have issues with downhill and some steep uphills but I know I will not be going back to flats anytime soon. As for getting out...first time riding...8-10 falls and not once was I able to get out of my pedals in a emergency, after that its starting to become second nature to get my feet out, had only a couple of issues with uphills so I am going to practice my track stands and see if that helps. To the OP I recommend those shoes and the Time Z pedals

  9. #9
    local jackass
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    $80 shimano spd

    Specialized BG Sport $90


    i have those shoes and the xt version one that pedal and i love them they are adjustable tension so u can make it very loose to learn on then tighten once you get comfortable you will fall a few times learning and when u stall out going up a climb and panic but im yet to actually be hurt for a fall due to my clips
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  10. #10
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    I've bee using SPD type cleats for a few years now. I still fall.

    Worst... when you are in a parking lot and fall.

    I can tell you... your feet will come un-clipped when you crash... much like ski bindings release when you hit too hard.

    Greatest thing about being clipped in, is being able to push-pull with climbing. I don't do it unless it's a real steep climb.. Even on short steep climbs it's good to go.

    I'm considering going from SPD to Crank Bro. Not sure if I want to make the leap...

    Hardwarz

  11. #11
    My other ride is your mom
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    I originally learned to ride on SPD's....but then switched over to Time ATAC's. What a difference....my confidence in tech sections went up because I felt I could get out of the ATAC's easier than the SPD's. In hindsight, had I known what I now know, I would have gone with Time's or any other of the similar type pedels out there with lots of float. Just my two cents....

  12. #12
    Former Bike Wrench
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    One of the best deals going...good shoes, great pedals
    http://www.pricepoint.com/detail/135...ium-Pedals.htm

  13. #13
    Rod
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    crank bros pedals Candy C pedals, you can rebuild these very cheap, and a shoe that fits. I've ridden on this setup for 3 years now and I have no reservations. I highly recommend this setup.
    There is not much choice between rotten apples.

  14. #14
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    You can get a set of EggBeater SL's on ebay for about $80.00 You do not have to adjust them at all and they are very easy to clip in and out...

  15. #15
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    I got crank bros. Smarty pedals last fall. They have been great. You can get them for $40 and under so if I have to junk em out and buy another set... Big deal. I also have bontrager race mountain shoes:
    http://store.trekbikes.com/jump.jsp?...&bShopOnline=1
    these are the most comfortable shoe I have ever worn. I love them! But please, go to your LBS and try on shoes!!! My brother made the mistake of ordering "his size"(which I warned him about) and they were way too big!!!

  16. #16
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    I just got my new crank bros Candy C pedals from my lbs for $70 and I also picked up some Shimano M182 shoes from Nashbro.com for $65 - love this setup and it was fairly cheap. I'll never go back to tennis shoes and non-clipless pedals.

  17. #17
    usually cranky
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    i got some shimano shoes and eggbeaters. kinda gard to get into but pretty easy to get out of, if i had to do it over i would have probably got shimano or time pedals.

  18. #18
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    I have Time Attac pedals and I love them. They are very simple.

    Don't be ashamed of using the pedals you have as you progress into terrain that you would not be comfortable in with clipless pedals. As you are more comfortable with you limits in harder terrain, then use the clipless. By then you will be more comfortable with the pedals anyway.

  19. #19
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    Thanks everyone!! Well I went on my first real XC ride in San Diego yesterday. Several good rocky climbs and downhills. I liked climbing since I have a heavy bike using my cage pedals, But things got a little hairy down hills cause when I felt I started losing control, I wish I wasnt locked in. I started thinking that it would be easier to turn my foot if I had clipless vs having to pull my foot out of the cage. I will start to shop for all the about mentioned pedals and shoes. Thanks again!

  20. #20
    Suffers From Binge Biking
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    Make sure you consider this combo deal
    http://www.pricepoint.com/detail/134...-M3-Pedals.htm
    In my experience Sette makes some real cheap (but good quality) products. I wasn't sure if I would like clipless so I didn't want to spend too much to try it out. I ordered the shoe in my current size and while I haven't had a full season of riding on them yet, they seem to be good enough.

    To the others:
    What is the main difference between SPD and eggbeater type pedals? Or is this just a SRAM/Shimano type preference?
    If it ain't broke, fix it 'till it is.

  21. #21
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    http://www.jensonusa.com/store/produ...520+Pedal.aspx

    Is one of the best bang for the buck pedals. Work very well, good bearings that are easy to service. Adjustable tension, dual sided. Heavier than XT and XTR but a fraction of the price. I have had pairs on a few different bikes and have always been pleased. Wet, rocks etc no problem. The only caveat with SPD's is clogging in the worst of worst mud. Even then they have clipped back in for me. It is usually just working through the mud caked to the shoe, not the mud on the pedal. Good luck. Also have had a pair of Sette Epic shoes and was pleased. Another good value item.

  22. #22
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    My wife ordered these pedals for me.

    http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00...outThisProduct

    Any good? They say PD-M520 but don't look exactly like the ones posted above me, well at least to me.

    Also since I am new to the clipless thing. Do they normally come with cleats or do you need to buy them separately? Figure when they come in I'll go down to the LBS and see about shoes.

  23. #23
    Disgruntled Peccary
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    those are indeed M520's, they come with single angle release cleats, if you wanted the multi-angle ones you'd have to get those separately. Personally I can pull out of single release cleats if I'm hammering on it anyway, the multi-release (which are designed to allow you to pull up and out too, not just twist) would cause me no end of issues.
    mike

  24. #24
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    SPD's rule. 520 is a best buy.

    CB's suck.
    Nobody cares...........

  25. #25
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    Thanks guys....

    The wife just told me that she didn't know if the ad I linked to was for one or two peddles so she ordered 2. After looking at the site I can't tell either. If the add is for 2 then I'll just have an extra set. lol

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