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  1. #1
    Mouth-Breather / Huffer
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    Clipless Clydes with Bad Knees

    I didn't want to hijack the "Clipless for Clydes" pedal threads (links below), so I hope it's alright to start a new thread for Clipless Clydes with Bad Knees...

    Based on the collective experience of this group, what are the best clipless pedals for those clydes who currently have - or have had - knee problems. What is is that allows your current set-up to work with your knee issues?

    Also, which clipless pedals *didn't* work? Why?

    Thanks!




    Other "Clipless Clydes" threads:

    What clipless pedals are clydes not breaking??

    A clyde and his clipless pedals
    Last edited by dog.gone; 03-31-2009 at 02:55 PM.

  2. #2
    Former Bike Wrench
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    Well...if you have a smooth pedal stroke and get a professional fit, just about any of the clipless pedals will work.

    However, if your mounting them up yourself and/or you have a uneven pedal stroke (like your heels rotate through the stroke) then something with more float or lateral movement is nice. Both Time and Crank Bros are more forgiving than say Shimano. While they list 6 degrees of float (Shimano lists 8 degrees of float, but they release soon after)...that is "free float" meaning there is no tension on the cleat. But you can set the cleats up with 15 or 20 degree release angles so they allow for a lot of rotation. They also have some lateral movement in them. If you need even more, the Speedplay Frog has 20 degrees of pure free float. No tension at all...to me they feel like I'm pedalling on a ice cube but I kn ow a lot of riders who swear by them.

  3. #3
    Mouth-Breather / Huffer
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    Mtnbiker72, allow me to thank you for answering many of my questions in this forum, both directly and indirectly. I truly appreciate your help. This particular answer is very detailed and will certainly help in my search for a proper clipless set-up!

  4. #4
    Fat boy Mod Moderator
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    the biggest thing is getting the cleats set up right... I can't imagine riding with 20* of float myself... but then again i've only ever used shimano SPD's and wellgo SPD knock offs...

    the first few times you go out with clipless (or setting up new shoes) keep your hex key in your pocket... just a small change in the rotation of your cleat makes a huge difference in how it feels... I like to have it clip out right before my heel hits the chain stay myself (don't know why but it's what works for me)... and just small fore-aft adjustments also make a huge difference...

    side note... dosen't time have some side to side "foat" as well?
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  5. #5
    some know me as mongo
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    the best pedal for people with bad knees IS speedplay Frogs. i have talked to many people about the whole knee problem and know many people with bad knees that have switched to them.

    the conclusion is that they are the best for people with bad knees. its not that they have alot of float but more that there is no rotation tension in the pedal. that is the key point about the pedals.

    i have ridden them in the past and they are a very nice pedal for sure. they worked in all kinda of conditions and are also very light yet strong.

  6. #6
    Mouth-Breather / Huffer
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    Thanks donalson and sir_crackien! Great suggestions; it looks as if I'll need to try all three styles. Since I live close to a Performance retail store, I could probably get away with try all three styles, but that might be pushing my luck, huh?

  7. #7
    Former Bike Wrench
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    The Time and Crank Bros will feel almost identical (I've owned both)...it is the Speedplay Frogs that will be significantly different. So you really only need to try two, but once they're mounted you pretty much own them at most shops.

  8. #8
    Mouth-Breather / Huffer
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    Yeah, my suggested method is a bit flaky. Maybe the techs/wrenches at the shop will have bikes with the relevant pedals and I can just rotate cleats. I'll figure out something more equitable for testing purposes.

  9. #9
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    Crank Bros have great float. I'm sure Time ATACs do as well from what I hear from friends. I used to play basketball on concrete and had trouble with shin splints and "jumper's knee." Got back into MTB riding with some cheap Nashbar pedals and started having really random, painful shin splints that would have me yelping!

    I switched to Eggbeaters Ti 2 and have had only 2 episodes of shin splint pain in the past 3-4 months vs every day before them.

  10. #10
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    I swear by Times. I have them on both my bikes. That said, I would love to try the speedplays because I have read so much good stuff about them... probably never going to happen, though.

    I am too happy with the Times.

  11. #11
    Mouth-Breather / Huffer
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    I've decided to start with a set of Time's mtn pedals. I almost purchased a pair of Time ATAC XS today for $104, but waivered at the last minute (the Sidi Doms kinda blew the weekly budget...). I'll probably end up with the entry-level model and go from there...

  12. #12
    Former Bike Wrench
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    The entry level Alum is a awesome pedal...its only downfall is weight, but hey were Clydes so who really cares.

  13. #13
    Mouth-Breather / Huffer
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    Quote Originally Posted by mtnbiker72
    The entry level Alum is a awesome pedal...its only downfall is weight, but hey were Clydes so who really cares.
    Yeah, at 300 pounds, a few extra grams certainly don't make a big difference. I'l just blow my nose before the ride and shed the weight that way...

    I think I saw the entry-level pedals from Time for $49 online today. I'll have to see if I can find them somewhere cheaper. I like cheap.

  14. #14
    Mouth-Breather / Huffer
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    Found 'em. I wonder if I can find a coupon for Price Point?

    http://www.pricepoint.com/detail/115...ium-Pedals.htm

    Besides weight, Is there no other appreciable difference in the lower-level Time products (ROC, ROC Control, Z, XS)?

  15. #15
    some know me as mongo
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    yeah the atac alums are every bit as good as the SX and other models just heavier. i keep a set as a back up, not that i have needed them!

  16. #16
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    Found 'em. I wonder if I can find a coupon for Price Point?
    Price Point doesn't do coupons, but they have great prices and super quick shipping...I use them more than anyone else for this reason

  17. #17
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    Okay, I got the Times. Installed 'em. Got me some shoes (Sette Epic). Wearin' 'em. Had my first-day of fun with clipless pedals:

    Went clipless for the first time yesterday

    With that incident out of the way, I can focus a bit more on my shoe/pedal situation. I wasn't getting the 'float' I was hoping for from the pedals, so I trimmed away some of the cleats in hopes that would allow more lateral movement of the foot. Didn't seem to work. Now, to top it off, it seems like I'm having an even harder time getting the shoes to disengage from the pedals.

    It could all be in my head, but I *really* have to rotate my heels to disengage - to the point that I can't even rotate my feet any further even if I wanted to do so. And, for the life of me, I can't figure out where the tension adjustment mechanism is for the pedals.

    I may not be the sharpest tool in the shed, but damn, do I feel stupid right about now... help?
    Last edited by dog.gone; 04-17-2009 at 05:03 PM.

  18. #18
    Former Bike Wrench
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    A few things:

    -Since your a beginner, make sure you have the cleats mounted for a 15* release. It will be easier to get out of them.

    -Cleats wear in...this is true of all clipless pedals. Give them some time (no pun intended) and some mileage. My Crank Bros now feel almost like "free float" where they were tighter when new

    -Its natural for beginners to also try and pull up when trying to get out of their pedals, this actually binds the mechanism and makes it harder to get out.

    So keep with it...if you have a trainer, sometimes it helps to practice on it.

    BTW-your profile picture is clearly from Cannon Beach...where do you normally ride?

  19. #19
    Mouth-Breather / Huffer
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    First, thanks for always being so helpful. Your insight is very much appreciated.

    Second, yes, that's Emma enjoying Cannon Beach. That was an interesting day; as a matter of fact, that's the day I learned she was afriad of water that was more than eight inches deep. I ended up carrying my 150# Dane across the river outlet at high tide. Fun stuff.

    Third, right now, the breadth and depth of my riding experience is limited strictly to my West Linn driveway. Fortunately, it's hidden from all the neighbors, so I can wreck freely and frequently until I get my biking legs (and feet) back.

    Before I moved to Portland (and promptly had my Diamondback and Gary Fishers stolen...), I lived in Eugene. My favorite areas down there were Brice Creek and, of course, McKenzie River Trail.

    How about you - where do you find yourself riding most?
    Last edited by dog.gone; 04-18-2009 at 09:18 AM.

  20. #20
    local trails rider
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    Quote Originally Posted by dog.gone
    Besides weight, Is there no other appreciable difference in the lower-level Time products (ROC, ROC Control, Z, XS)?
    the Z obviously has the big platform.

    The shape of the ROC ATAC models is different from the ATAC: it seems to support the shoe more and guides my shoe into the mechanism better when clipping in.

    The ROC (and Z and Alium) models have steel bars, instead of aluminum, which may be more durable. Some complain that the aluminum bars on ATACs get sloppy.

  21. #21
    Underskilled
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    I gave up with clipless as apart from other problems they hurt my knees, used shimano from basic to XTR and a few in between and time atac.

    I now use a good pair of flat peddles (tioga MX pro) and the brand is important here 5.10 cycling shoes. For people who don't go rock climbing or have a good understanding of polymer chemistry, trust me no other shoes is close to 5.10 performance.
    I can fully circular pedal as the grip is unequalled, but I can take my feet on and off the pedal when I want. clippies are easy to get out of, but to get back in, while bouncing down a rock garden at high speed, not so easy!

    5.10 are the way to go, might cost you a few seconds in a race, but for everyday riding there is no better way.

  22. #22
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    Another vote for Time ATAC
    I have used Time pedals on road and mountain bikes and love the little things.
    Tried Shimano with no real problems so might be a case of picking the pedal you need rather than the brand
    Maybe get a consultation with someone who does sports medicine/physio/cycling kind of thing ... an expert i think they are called
    Your knee issues may be completely different from ours

  23. #23
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    I know it's an old thread, but I hadn't see it before. I'm a baby Clyde (200 lbs.) with bad knees. I credit Speedplay Frogs with keeping me cycling- huge float, no springs pulling on your knees. They're the only mountain pedals I know that are like that, and they're also stupid simple and seem to last forever. I can't imagine why anyone would want to mess around with something like an SPD (other than price) when Frogs are available. I have them on my road bikes as well.
    To the troll mobile, away...

  24. #24
    Get out and ride
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    Go for the time XS for road and the Time XE for mountain. I have two screws in my left knee form a motorcycle accident and I am 40 years old. Been biking for last 15 years, I originally bout the XS for my SS and full Suspension. For some reason, I could actually feel the springs pull as I climbed (stood and pulled up with the legs), Ive never noticed this before on SPD's. I moved the XS to my road and never felt that again. Purchased XE for the mountain and never experienced this problem again.

  25. #25
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    I know pedals can make a big difference, but I wanted to put a plug in for some knee strength and flexibility exercises too. Strengthening the muscles in my hips and knees has made a big difference to me in keeping knee pain down after a long ride.

    For me this means squats, lunges, and hip ab/ad ductors machines at the gym. You can do a lot of good with leg lifts at home too.

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