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  1. #1
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    Flats vs Clipless "SHOWDOWN"

    "I'm sick of it" !! Let's get our gloves on and get dirty! Been mtb riding seriously for about 7 years... Used to race MX professionally in my junior days, so the transition to mtb has been simple and natural. 7 yrs ago, I was told, if you are ever going to be a "serious" rider, learn now and go clipless. I did... Ok - stage is set - lets get ready to rumble... Tired of thinking about it... I am willing to go flat or stay in my clips. I'm fine either way... But not "both ways" (hassle switching based on different riding conditions) - lets hear from the "pros" and the avg joes.... Make your points short and to the point! I will be keeping score and at the end- I will declare the winner... FLAT or CLIPLESS... Ding ding....

  2. #2
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    Do a search and read the insane amount of opinions already out there. Report back with your "winner"

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by ZmyDust View Post
    Do a search and read the insane amount of opinions already out there. Report back with your "winner"


    Ding, ding!
    Earnest Hemingway once said "The world is a fine place and worth fighting for." I agree with the second part.

  4. #4
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    Left foot flat pedal, right foot clipless, all the benefits of both with none of the drawbacks of either. The pros know it but can't ride that setup because of their sponsorship requirements.

  5. #5
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    Not so fast ZD, I have... That's why we need this showdown once and for all... Without the Thread showing bias...
    Oh yes... One ground rule... Learning curve can't be an issue... I can ride clipless in my sleep and no fear...so " I'm not willing to learn" is lame and can't be an argument.
    However, you "rocky mountain" freaks may say... " you simply can't ride highly technical rocky trails clipped in... Maybe so... I have never ridden in the Rockies....

  6. #6
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    ... Is this true....?
    Once you see that there is no magical pedal stroke only allowed by being attached to your pedals you'll be shocked to find out just how fast you can be on flats.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by J.B. Weld View Post
    Left foot flat pedal, right foot clipless, all the benefits of both with none of the drawbacks of either. The pros know it but can't ride that setup because of their sponsorship requirements.
    Or left foot clipless and right foot flats. The setup totally depends on if the course runs clockwise or counterclockwise.

  8. #8
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    I can't believe I'm responding here (if you've ever seen my bike), but it seems like if you are riding flats on serious terrain, you
    A) Also require a dropper post.
    B) Always ride with your seat in a position that is not optimized for pedaling - and maybe you just stand all the time.
    C) Have to stop frequently to fiddle with your seat height.


    -F
    It's never easier - you just go faster.

  9. #9
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    There should be a tool on the forum that functions like google.

    As a user types in the title for a new thread, the hundreds of other threads already created will pop up for the OP to search through.

    We should come up with a clever name for it.......swinny, swanny, samsontine....SEARCH!! Dammit, SEARCH!

  10. #10
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    Flats vs Clipless "SHOWDOWN"

    OP, if you have actually read the threads, you would know that any pedal discussion will never be devoid of bias because everyone's pedal choices are based on -gasp- personal preferences! Nebulous concepts like confidence, rider skill, riding style, terrain, bike setup, peer pressure, and others have more influence on that decision than the oft-cited pedaling efficiency.

    Frankly, shoe selection (specifically sole stiffness) has more of an impact on pedaling efficiency than pedal choice.

    Most people ride what they like because they have tried other options and have found what works for them.

    You are really just trying to start another flame fest because you are bored.

  11. #11
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    Personal preference and goals. Or you could do what someone else likes.
    "Tortured by mental illness" ~monogod

  12. #12
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    Scoring update... So far we've had mostly "non thinkers" whom would rather write a thesis on goggle search rather than passing up the discussion to better informed and stronger opinionated riders.. Sorry folks... Maybe we'll get a few that actually are willing to "get off the fence" and take a stance...

  13. #13
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    Re: Flats vs Clipless "SHOWDOWN"

    I might be able to help here...former pro-am motocross guy myself that is starting to race XC on the Mtb.

    I've been running flats as long as I've been riding, and always got crap from my buddies about not running clipless. I was able to keep up just fine, so I figured it was all in their head and I was just as efficient on the flats.

    Fast forward to last week...I finally pulled the trigger on a set of SPDs and tried them out. Unbelievable how much less effort it takes to pedal and maneuver the bike. So in the end, I noticed significant gains by switching to clipless. (who knows, maybe it's just in my head too)

    You also want to keep in mind that it is good to ride flats every once in while to maintain the proper motions of maneuvering the bike so you don't rely on the clipless pedals too much. That's my two cents anyways...

  14. #14
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    Probably because it's like asking what's your fav flavor ice cream.
    I guess I'm really on the fence because I like both for different reasons.
    -clipless gives you more pedals stroke and power. And for mtbing more control and lift.
    -flats can have crazy grip and allow much more movement and options.
    If I had to fall off the fence, let's say onto a stranded island and could only chose one, hmm, that'd be a tough call. I guess flats so i could wear sandals at the beach.
    I like chocolate
    Seriously
    "Tortured by mental illness" ~monogod

  15. #15
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    Re: Flats vs Clipless "SHOWDOWN"

    Road flats all last year and back to my SPD this year. Makes a big difference climbing over technical terrain in my opinion. Flats were fun but I'll stick with my spd if only for the confidence factor when technical climbing comes in that I won't be coming off the pedal even when wet.

    Sent from my SCH-I605 using Tapatalk 2

  16. #16
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    I started in MX then moved to mountain bikes. I tried clipless but flats just feel more natural and also give me more confidence.

    I use five ten shoes and canfield ultimate pedals. Very happy with this combo.

  17. #17
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    Former non pro Motocross rider, never really raced, barely rode at the track, usually just wrecked anyhow.

    Uhm I suck so my opinion on this matter is fairly irrelevent, but I do like both and long strolls with asian women on the beach.

    That is all

  18. #18
    Sleek Jamis Exile Rider
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    Riding Clipped in now. The term "Clipless" is a misnomer as our shoes have clips and we are attached to the bike. But I digress. Who am I to try and correct the terminology.

    Being able to power up hills spinning the back wheel out on an upstroke is pretty cool.

  19. #19
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    Re: Flats vs Clipless "SHOWDOWN"

    The clipless vs flats issue has been beat to death for mountain bikes, but what about running clipless on a dirt bike? I heard it adds 4-5 HP!

  20. #20
    I didn't do it
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    I prefer baggies....oops wrong thread. Never mind.

  21. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by nwbikur View Post
    I prefer baggies....oops wrong thread. Never mind.
    ^^^ Superior poast.

  22. #22
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    Clipped-in MotoCross ... What balls !

  23. #23
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    The 1993 500cc World Champion rides clipped in; you lose and are loser if you don't know who that is.

    Later fat slow pokes!

    Nice KOM, sorry about your penis.

  24. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by ImaginaryFriend View Post
    Or left foot clipless and right foot flats. The setup totally depends on if the course runs clockwise or counterclockwise.
    Don't forget that it reverses in the southern hemisphere. Geesh...can't believe you'd post that advice without specifying.
    I live with fear and danger every day. And on the weekends she lets me go mountain biking.

  25. #25
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    Refreshing ! Great answer. Thx dude! Where do u ride and how much technical stuff do u encounter? What I mean, do u ride in some areas that even seasoned riders have to put your foot down to negotiate... Ie a super tight uphill switch back with a 12" loose unavoidable rock boulder step in the apex of turn....

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