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  1. #1
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    PD-M985 Pedal issues

    Just picked up a pair of the new PD-M985 trail pedals and love them.
    But after only a couple of rides have found that the bearing seem to already be contaminated. I only noticed this because of a bit of grease being "pushed" out onto the spindle. After cleaning it up BOTH pedals are a bit "crunchy". Just wondering if anyone else had noticed this issue?
    I've owned many shimano clipless pedals thru the years and haven't notice this on any of them (but they do develop a bit of play but nothing like this). Just a heads up.

  2. #2
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    Seals and ALL of the grease blew out first time I rode mine, ~1hr ride. Thought it was strange so I called Shimano and they said send them back. They sent me a new pair which have been golden for several months now.

  3. #3
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    So it looks like I'm not the only one with these bad seal's. I'll contact Shimano myself and give another pair a try. Thanks for the reply.

  4. #4
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    Same problem here. The pedals have less than 100 miles on them and there is considerable play in them and the bearings on both are crunchy. Never ridden them in the wet or submerged them. Will contact Shimano and see what they have to say.

    This is my first set of "expensive" pedals, I have until now used Wellgo MG-18 which last me a few years before they are worn out.

  5. #5
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    My old 970 XTRs spin very free. New 980 XTRs spin with a drag after several rides.

  6. #6
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    Shimano SPD Pedals

    I have the 959s and the new XTR trail pedals.

    I have used my 959s for almost 3 years....I swapped the new XTR trail pedals on my TXO which I have been using for almost 3 months.

    I prefer the 959s.... but I think the same has been discontinued by the big "S"...

    Sad indeed....The 959s are almost indestructible...IMHO

  7. #7
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    I had the same problem as above , took them apart & repacked with new grease as Slowly put back on the axel so the seals dont pop out. All ok now

  8. #8
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    Shimano replaced mine with a new set and the bearings seem to be holding up so far, just a tiny amount of play has developed and it doesn't seem to be getting worse.

  9. #9
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    Same thing for my set. Started having heaps of side play after the grease started coming out and I sent them back to my LBS. Coming 2 months not but no news yet

  10. #10
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    Same issue's with my 980's, they lasted about 5 months. Sent them back to Shimano and had a new pair about 5 days later. Only three rides on them but no problems so far.

  11. #11
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    Returned mine

    I contacted Shimano and they said they hadn't heard about any M985 bearing issues (isn't that what they always say). He said to return them to LBS ( which I did) and got a new pair.

    The new pedals have also been spewing a little grease from around the spindle area but so far they haven't developed any of the contamination/play issues. Still digging the pedals.

  12. #12
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    I take back my last post, grease all over the place after todays ride. Loose and crunchy once again.

  13. #13
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    To add my $.02, I have had the same problem with the dust seal blowing out on my Shimano XTR M985's. The LBS has already replaced them, but after another 2 weeks of riding, the new ones have blown out again. LBS is sending them off again. They are awesome pedals when they are sealed and working well, but I'll be on my 3rd set of these. I don't trust them enough to keep them without something better than 'here is a new pair of the same'. Anybody had any luck resolving the issue?

  14. #14
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    I am on my third pair as well since February. My newest set I received two weeks ago, and they are starting to blow the grease out yet again. As far as a fix goes I'm just going to ride out the two year warranty then get some eggbeaters.

  15. #15
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    As an update...
    I just dropped off the 3rd set of pedals at the LBS for another set of blown seals. BUT this time, the LBS says that Shimano has acknowledged that they are having an issue and are sending new axle assemblies that are supposed to resolve the issue. I hope they fix the problem because I like the pedals otherwise. New parts should be in sometime next week. I'll post again after I get the new ones.

  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by jason300b View Post
    As an update...
    I just dropped off the 3rd set of pedals at the LBS for another set of blown seals. BUT this time, the LBS says that Shimano has acknowledged that they are having an issue and are sending new axle assemblies that are supposed to resolve the issue. I hope they fix the problem because I like the pedals otherwise. New parts should be in sometime next week. I'll post again after I get the new ones.

    Did you get your pedals back yet? I am waiting for mine to return and hoping they fixed them. I love the pedals so I don't plan to give up on them.

  17. #17
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    I had one actually break. The threaded end of the axle broke in the lock nut and the pedal body fell off the axle. There's a thread about it here:
    XTR Trail pedal failure

  18. #18
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    Sorry it took me a while update this...but, the new axle seal seems to be holding up. I've only had a few rides so far, but everything is still sealed. The new dust seal sits inside the pedal a little more (like 2 mm or maybe a little bit less...it is harder to see now that it is recessed, but it is still there). Having said that, I am in Colorado and haven't had a ton of riding time since its been cold and snowy.

  19. #19
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    I noticed yesterday that my replacement pair have blown the seal on the right pedal and there is a lot of play. Back to the LBS!

  20. #20
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    That sucks. I wanted to get these pedals.

  21. #21
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    Shimano is sending another replacement set. This pair had only 100 miles or so on them, I am considering just ebaying the replacements as I am not all that confident in them. Does anyone know if there have been similar issues with the newer XT level pedals?

  22. #22
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    I think I figured out the seal issue last night. Shimano lowered the stack height on the new 980 pedals compared to older versions, lower profile means that the sidewall of the seal must have got shorter (assuming axle diameter has stayed the same). I am guessing that as the pedal wears in and play starts to develop the seal is not able to flex enough to maintain the seal with the axle and therefore grease is able to weep out and crap can get in. With enough play in the pedal the seal may even be pinched up enough to start getting dragged out of the pedal body which is what I suspect happened to mine.

    I will be putting this replacement set up for sale and picking up a new set of the old 970 pedals which seem to be bulletproof.

  23. #23
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    Need to service my m985s the seals have come out and the right hand pedal has play in it and isnt spinning smoothly. Never stripped a Shimano pedal before which way is the thread on the gold nut. Is it righty tighty lefty loosey on both pedals or is one of the pedals a left hand thread.

    Not at all impressed only 4 months of use and need a service might go back to my old battered never touched but still spinning after 5 years Time Aliums.

  24. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by stubs View Post
    Need to service my m985s the seals have come out and the right hand pedal has play in it and isnt spinning smoothly. Never stripped a Shimano pedal before which way is the thread on the gold nut. Is it righty tighty lefty loosey on both pedals or is one of the pedals a left hand thread.

    Not at all impressed only 4 months of use and need a service might go back to my old battered never touched but still spinning after 5 years Time Aliums.
    Try calling Shimano...they'll likely send you a new set. I've had good luck in the past with the Shimano people on the phone.

  25. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by Wheelman55 View Post
    Try calling Shimano...they'll likely send you a new set. I've had good luck in the past with the Shimano people on the phone.
    Thanks will try that route before I get the toolbox open and invalidate my warranty. Cant believe how little use they have had before the problems set in. Havent got exact numbers but probably not much more than 500 miles though admittedly the weather has been wet, gritty and muddy or icy every ride since I got them.

  26. #26
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    Quote Originally Posted by stubs View Post
    Thanks will try that route before I get the toolbox open and invalidate my warranty. Cant believe how little use they have had before the problems set in. Havent got exact numbers but probably not much more than 500 miles though admittedly the weather has been wet, gritty and muddy or icy every ride since I got them.
    Those kind of conditions should have very little effect on your pedals. Chains, cassettes and rings however can wear pretty fast in the grit. Let us know how it goes with Shimano.

  27. #27
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    Quote Originally Posted by stubs View Post
    Need to service my m985s the seals have come out and the right hand pedal has play in it and isnt spinning smoothly. Never stripped a Shimano pedal before which way is the thread on the gold nut. Is it righty tighty lefty loosey on both pedals or is one of the pedals a left hand thread.

    Not at all impressed only 4 months of use and need a service might go back to my old battered never touched but still spinning after 5 years Time Aliums.
    The pedal bearings themselves are quite easy to service. Just make sure you have a thin enough spanner or the proper Shimano tool to hold the locknut in place when you set the bearing tightness.

    Shimano XTR M985 Trail pedals exploded diagram
    http://techdocs.shimano.com/media/te...9830713903.pdf

    The thing that you have to be extremely careful of with the Shimano XTR M985 Trail pedals is that the threads on the gold nut that screws into the pedal are delicate and can strip. On my original set of pedals I took the pedal apart and serviced it but when I put it back together the threads on the gold nut stripped or cross threaded.

    XTR 2011 Pedals (first impressions)

    That set of pedals was warrantied in the end. On my current Shimano XTR M985 Trail pedals there's a lot of grease coming out from inside the pedals but the seals themselves have stayed in place so far.

  28. #28
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    I now have a couple of hundred miles on the last generation (970) XTR pedals and they are still rock solid. Zero play and just a little grease weep which I would think is normal. Not sure whether to give the last replacement pair of 980's another try or just ebay them.

  29. #29
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    From crunchy to broken

    Second set of PD-M985's. And these also developed serious play and crunch.

    Guess I hadn't seen the thread regarding the pedal failures.
    http://forums.mtbr.com/drivetrain-sh...re-751821.html

    But that's what happened to me. Looks like the pedal "untreaded" from the pedal body vs. some of the others that broke the out-board treaded end of the axle.

    I've been riding Shimano clipless pedals since "91" (737's I think ) and never had a total failure like this. All of the pedals developed some play but never like either of these 985's.
    Lucky for me I wasn't bombing down some technical section when they decided to let loose.

    Shimano will be out another set of pedals soon.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails PD-M985 Pedal issues-img_0459.jpg  


  30. #30
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    Yup. I'm waiting for the next version of XTR or if I see another crazy deal on M520/M540 pedals I'll grab them.

  31. #31
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    I hope the Shimano importer in your country is better than the importer in my country Britain. Madison the British importer treated me like dirt and accused me of trying to fiddle a new set of pedals out of them. Didnt want new pedals I wanted a set of pedals that worked and didnt fall to pieces every 2 months. They grudgingly repaired them under warranty but butchered the gold nuts on both pedals and overtightened one pedal so it barely turned. Gave up on the pedals and gone back to my old Time ATACs. Annoying that I have a set of expensive pedals sitting in a drawer which I just dont trust to work and cant sell.

  32. #32
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    Quote Originally Posted by H2o-Bar View Post
    Second set of PD-M985's. And these also developed serious play and crunch.

    Guess I hadn't seen the thread regarding the pedal failures.
    http://forums.mtbr.com/drivetrain-sh...re-751821.html

    But that's what happened to me. Looks like the pedal "untreaded" from the pedal body vs. some of the others that broke the out-board treaded end of the axle.

    I've been riding Shimano clipless pedals since "91" (737's I think ) and never had a total failure like this. All of the pedals developed some play but never like either of these 985's.
    Lucky for me I wasn't bombing down some technical section when they decided to let loose.

    Shimano will be out another set of pedals soon.

    I have broken several Shimano pedals just like this.

    A couple of older 959's and a 540. Neither unthreaded, but all broke at the tip of the spindle. First one Shimano warrantied.....the rest I just chalked up to wearing out.
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  33. #33
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    Another pair have just taken a crap, right pedal seal has gone again and grease is everywhere and play is developing. Hopefully Shimano will send me another set.

  34. #34
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    I have a pair of these and I have the exact same problem as all of you. The bearings are just a bunch of loose balls and the way the pedal play is stabilized is with a rubber gasket. Yup, just a rubber gasket. The same gasket is what keeps the grease inside. That gasket disintegrated on my drive side and I had to replace it with a similar sized piece of tube that also disintegrated. Pretty crappy design. Too bad I removed one side SPD clips to make them into flat/clips or they would be going back to Shimano.

  35. #35
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    I've had a pair of the XTR trails (PD-M985) for a year and a half now and it's been through all sorts of conditions from wet and muddy to dry and dusty and it's still performing fine. Just took it apart for a service and it's pretty easy to disassemble, clean and regrease. A couple of things to keep in mind:

    1. There are 22 loose and tiny ball bearings inside. They are easy to drop and lose if you're not careful.

    2. As others in this thread pointed out, the gold nut on the axle is fairly easy to strip when putting the thing back together. Take your time with reassembly.

    PD-M985 Pedal issues-uploadfromtaptalk1359401843455.jpg

    Sent from my S3 using Tapatalk 2
    Last edited by hmorsi; 01-28-2013 at 12:57 PM.

  36. #36
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    Shimano helped me out

    I finally got around to sending in my 2nd pair of PD-M985's (good thing XTR has a 3 year warranty).

    I just called Shimano USA/NorthAmerica and they had me print off a returns form off there website. About a week later I received a new pair of pedals. This was one of the few manufactures that acually answered there phone. Cool.

  37. #37
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    do the spindles on the newer m985s or m980s look different in any way than the spindles that have been breaking?
    any photos?
    if a change occurred, when?

  38. #38
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    Have the pedals been updated at all by Shimano?
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  39. #39
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    PD-M985 Pedal issues

    I don't think so. I had a pair of 985T from the first year which broke at the axle and received a warranty pair last summer. Identical. How come the 970 axles were so great and these suck...all due to the lower height?

    I have a pair of DuraAce which are prob 10 years old, still running awesome.

  40. #40
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    Servicing the bearings I have cross threaded the right lock nut, I was not careful enough. Does anyone know where I can obtain a replacement nut or axle?

  41. #41
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    Your local Shimano bike shop should be able to get it for you but it might take a week or two to arrive. I have ordered a couple of really obscure parts from my local Shimano shop and they always arrived even if they had to come from overseas.

    Have a look at this link and you should be able to find the part number if you want to try the internet

    Shimano

  42. #42
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    Quote Originally Posted by hmorsi View Post
    I've had a pair of the XTR trails (PD-M985) for a year and a half now and it's been through all sorts of conditions from wet and muddy to dry and dusty and it's still performing fine. Just took it apart for a service and it's pretty easy to disassemble, clean and regrease. A couple of things to keep in mind:

    1. There are 22 loose and tiny ball bearings inside. They are easy to drop and lose if you're not careful.

    2. As others in this thread pointed out, the gold nut on the axle is fairly easy to strip when putting the thing back together. Take your time with reassembly.

    Click image for larger version. 

Name:	uploadfromtaptalk1359401843455.jpg 
Views:	855 
Size:	48.9 KB 
ID:	756676

    Sent from my S3 using Tapatalk 2
    I took mine apart after they developed a lot of play but are still smooth thinking it would be an easy adjustment. I was amazed that the load could be entirely on those sets of tiny bearings. I cleaned and rebuilt the axle and put it back. What your photo doesn't show it the bushing inside the cold nut on the inner end. After rebuild my pedals still have play and I think this bushing is to blame. I can't find anything on the net about replacing it. What a bummer, what happened to shimano's legendary durability? Guess I should stick with XT.

  43. #43
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cyclotoine View Post
    I took mine apart after they developed a lot of play but are still smooth thinking it would be an easy adjustment. I was amazed that the load could be entirely on those sets of tiny bearings. I cleaned and rebuilt the axle and put it back. What your photo doesn't show it the bushing inside the cold nut on the inner end. After rebuild my pedals still have play and I think this bushing is to blame. I can't find anything on the net about replacing it. What a bummer, what happened to shimano's legendary durability? Guess I should stick with XT.
    My replacement pair have been alright after a season's worth of use so far. Jury's out on long term durability.

  44. #44
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    I picked up a set of the latest XTR trails for my latest build and after 200 miles there was play and the left seal had popped out so it looks like they still haven't figured this s*it out.

    I ended up buying one of these wrenches so I can adjust them on a regular basis. I really shouldn't have to be checking them every couple of rides.

    Stanley Proto Facom FM-31.8X9 Tappet Satin Open-End Wrench, 8 by 9mm - - Amazon.com

    My old 970 series are still going strong despite never having been apart or adjusted. WTF!

  45. #45
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    Another pedal set that didn't make a full season. Both side developed Lot's-O-play so I got into them for a look.

    One side had a damaged rubber gasket so now I'm back using my PD-M785. I know Shimano really likes loose ball bearings (vs. cartridge bearings) but the whole "pre-loading" and reassembly doesn't make them very service friendly. That and knowing that they will have to be serviced again in 6 months doesn't make thing easier as well.

    Love Shimano SPD's for the positive clip-in/out but hate the bearing/spindle design.

  46. #46
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    Quote Originally Posted by jason300b View Post
    To add my $.02, I have had the same problem with the dust seal blowing out on my Shimano XTR M985's. The LBS has already replaced them, but after another 2 weeks of riding, the new ones have blown out again. LBS is sending them off again. They are awesome pedals when they are sealed and working well, but I'll be on my 3rd set of these. I don't trust them enough to keep them without something better than 'here is a new pair of the same'. Anybody had any luck resolving the issue?

    I have similar issues, my PD-985 pedals are 18 months and the seals are busted. I took the pedals apart and cleaned and regreased. Issue is the axle seal, but no one can get me new seals. LBS wants me to replace the entire axle assembly to get a new seal, I am not sure I understand the logic, but they say they cannot get the seals only! Anyone knows how to get the seals?

  47. #47
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    Quote Originally Posted by usdansker View Post
    I have similar issues, my PD-985 pedals are 18 months and the seals are busted. I took the pedals apart and cleaned and regreased. Issue is the axle seal, but no one can get me new seals. LBS wants me to replace the entire axle assembly to get a new seal, I am not sure I understand the logic, but they say they cannot get the seals only! Anyone knows how to get the seals?

    There is no logic. They don't provide replacement brake seals either. The upside of XTR is the three year warranty so print off the return (or get your shop to do it) and Shimano will send you a new set, and they are pretty quick too.

    In fact if you bought your pedals at your LBS then they should know Shimano well enough to swap them immediately at the shop as Shimano will send them a new set to go back into stock.
    Last edited by AndrewBikeGuide; 02-02-2016 at 09:47 AM.
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  48. #48
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    My replacement pair just failed in the same exact way as the original pair.



    Shimano will not honour the warranty on the replacement pair as 3 years have passed since original date of purchase. Very disappointing.

  49. #49
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    It appears that the pedals are the only XTR item that don't deliver a premium level of performance above XT. Disappointing considering that the original 636 pedals are still going for many people (twenty years later). You need to write a letter (not an email) to Shimano head office expressing your disappointment especially as how a product from their Japanese factory does not appear to be lasting as well the versions produced in their Malaysian factory. Pedals should have full service kits and other than bearings and seals should really last for a very long time if they are serviced properly.
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  50. #50
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    Quote Originally Posted by hmorsi View Post
    My replacement pair just failed in the same exact way as the original pair.



    Shimano will not honour the warranty on the replacement pair as 3 years have passed since original date of purchase. Very disappointing.
    Am I wrong? It appears as though your pedal just unscrewed from the spindle. Or, is something broken that I can't see from the photo?
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