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  1. #1
    bee
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    New question here. Is heal strike an issue for MTB commuters or road bike commuters?

    I've heard about how some people have issues with their heal hitting their pannier bags when pedaling and I was wondering if this is really an issue for mainly for road bike commuters. Or if this is an issue mainly for MTB bike commuters.

    I'm asking because I just put a rear rack on an old MTB and now I want to buy some panniers for it. I saw that Nashbar has some euro compact panniers that are shaped in a curve so that your heal does not hit the pannier when pedaling. I was thinking about getting them, but they sure are ugly. And really, I'm not sure if this heal strike thing is an issue more for road bike commuters or MTB commuters.

  2. #2
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    It can affect any bike. Has to do with rack mounting and chainstay length, as well as shoe size, crank arm length, etc. See if you can get someone to take some measurements of clearance from your heel to the back of the rack on your bike, then find panniers that are that wide or a little narrower. Did that make sense? hehe.

  3. #3
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    I don't have an issue, but I have Surly Nice Racks and Ortlieb rollertops on an early 90's 700c mountain/hybrid bike. Cheap racks and non-adjustable panniers (fore/aft) may produce a heel overlap problem.

  4. #4
    bee
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    Quote Originally Posted by JAG410
    It can affect any bike. Has to do with rack mounting and chainstay length, as well as shoe size, crank arm length, etc. See if you can get someone to take some measurements of clearance from your heel to the back of the rack on your bike, then find panniers that are that wide or a little narrower. Did that make sense? hehe.


    I don't understand what you mean. What does the width of the pannier have to do with heal strike? I thought heal strike was more an issue with the fore/aft adjustment of the pannier and not the width.

  5. #5
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    The wider the bag, the closer it'll be to your feet. I've only tried one pannier, and it was the TransIT Metro from performance bike. It was significantly wider than any other pannier I've seen, and my heel hit it frequently. I returned it to the store and chose to go the backpack route. My bike isn't intended for touring, so it's chainstay length is shorter than a true touring bike. If you look at the pic linked below, the bag fits fine. So width is a factor, in relation to chainstay length. Fore/Aft adjustment can only go so far until you run out of rack to mount it on.

    Here's the Metro bag http://www.performancebike.com/shop/...tegory_ID=2312

  6. #6
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    I'm running an old Blackburn mountain rack with the metal strip down the middle to double as a fender. I just bought some Ortlieb classic roll top rear bags. The roll top fronts can also be run in the rear but they are slightly smaller. The Ortliebs have an insane amount of fore and aft adjustment. The hooks that grab the top of the rack run in a track along the top of the bag. I was concerned about my heel hitting the bag also so I adjusted them back until my foot cleared by about an inch.

    The down side...they are very expensive and a little inconvenient if you need to get in and out of them a lot. No external pockets and no zippers. However, for wet commuting, I don't think anything else is as good.

    Here's a great picture of the bags. You can see the mounting hardware on the bag in the back of the picture.

    http://www.sjscycles.com/xxlimages/9462ortlieb_xxl.jpg

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