Singlespeed Shoes - Ratchet or No Ratchet?- Mtbr.com
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  1. #1
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    Singlespeed Shoes - Ratchet or No Ratchet?

    As a singlespeeder is the Ratchet necessary or do shoes with 3 velcro straps work just as well?

    Currently trying to decide between the Spec BG Expert/Sidi Giau (3 straps) or Spec BG Comp/Sidi Dom 5 (w/Ratchets).

    Thanks

  2. #2
    Ovaries on the Outside
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    I think the Sidi Giau will be the sweetest looking sleds for your dogs. Don't get them muddy.

  3. #3
    artistic...
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    you should ask sidi to release a singlespeed shoe.
    i believe sidi shoes are geared.
    WTB: Bomber Z2 1 1/8 steerer, in good to excellent shape OR bomber rebuild kit.

  4. #4
    is buachail foighneach me
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    i'm not a big fan of ratchets on shoes.

  5. #5
    Birdman aka JMJ
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    I like 'em

    I've got some well-worn Sidi Dominators and love them. I actually use the ratchet quite often, reaching down to snug-up or reduce the cross strap tension while riding (without stopping).

    Just get to a smooth section, rotate that foot up to the 12 o'clock position and adjust as needed by feel - no need to even look down.

    Works great.

    JMJ

  6. #6
    is buachail foighneach me
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    you can do the same with velcro....

  7. #7
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    I have 3 velcro straps ad they work fine, however my road shoes have ratchets and it's the dog's danglies.

    Next pair of off-raod shoes will have ratchets.

  8. #8
    xls
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    When I bought my last pair of shoes, I wondered about the same thing. Saw some reports about problems with the ratchets in rocky terrain. Like when you have to take your foot off the pedal and happen to hit the ratchet on a rock. More people seemed to dislike them than to like them.

    I don't really have the urge to adjust the tightness of my shoes while riding, but what Birdman says is the first thing I read where the ratchets have an advantage over regular velcro.

    For me, the fact that I could see no real advantage of the ratchets and the higher price made me buy shoes without them (Spesh Trail 110). I do like the fact they protect my ankle a little bit and they work great for SS.


  9. #9
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    laces are fine and/or dandy

  10. #10
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    I like the ratchet. Gives me a nice, easy to tune snugging band around my ankle and the other velcro straps can put on as loose as possible to still be tight enough to keep my foot in place but maintain my circulation. I find the ratchet a bit stiffer and more solid than a velcro strap.

  11. #11
    Caca pasa
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    Chez rachet.
    "합니다 행사에서 디비 판매 합니다 관련해" Lesleybien

    Hogan Lake blog. A section of Hogan Lake trails here.

  12. #12
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    click.click.click.

  13. #13
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    Ratchets are nice because you truly feel in your shoe. 3 straps gives more micro adjustment but seems to have a bit more give; which can be good or bad.

    +1 Ratchet for any application.

  14. #14
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    I've had bad luck with ratchets malfunctioning.. so now I'm running 2 strap velcros, hahahaha, seriously, I am. they are just ok, but at least when the ride is over, I can get em off. If I had money to blow right now, 3 strap velcros for sure. but I see the appeal for ratchets.


    read reviews before buying, not all ratchets are created equal.
    no chain no gain.

  15. #15
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    get the specialized. way better than the Sidi.

  16. #16
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    Ride what you like best, SS or not.

    Another for the rachet here. I feel it's easier to adjust while riding a mtn bike and my feet tend to settle in and I usually tighten them down at some point.

    Sidi Doms forever for me even though they have gone from $189 to $299 overnight it seems

    Just make sure you get the SS water bottles though
    nobody reads your blog

  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by scoutcat
    get the specialized. way better than the Sidi.
    see thats funny cause me and 4 of my buddies all happened to buy the same specialized shoes last season, on sale for approx. $100 at LBS, and 3/4 of us are strongly dissatisfied with the ratchet on it. maybe the design has changed.
    no chain no gain.

  18. #18
    local trails rider
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    Quote Originally Posted by colker1
    i believe sidi shoes are geared.
    My new shoes are Shimanos with ratchets: I suppose I must have bought gearie shoes by mistake... but they fit great.

    The old shoes have 3 velcro straps and I've never had any problems with them. They are just getting a bit worn.

  19. #19
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    Unless you're pedaling up everything, I'd take a look at the sole of the shoe to make sure it can handle a lot of off bike scrambling. Sidi's pedal nice, but can be the suck for dealing w/ rocky hike a bikes (too much exposed plastic, not enough tacky rubber), the higher end Spec shoes I've had didn't hold up all that well either, rubber pulled away from the plastic sole, toes blew out. A few upper end Shimanos look decent in this regard, but no first hand exp.

    I've been rocking the Shimano MT-31 (laces w/ decent tread) for the last year and I'm currently breaking in a pair of the Spec Tahoes (laces w/ a strap). Laces work fine for foot retention, ratchets are good too until they jam up and don't release. Not a fan of velcro only as they don't seem to work as well when it gets muddy and yucky out....

  20. #20
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    Agreed. The Specialized insert is great to avoid foot pains too. Sidi are over priced and not comfortable.
    "When the end of the world comes, I want to be in Cincinnati because it's always 20 years behind the times." Twain

  21. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by MellowCat
    Agreed. The Specialized insert is great to avoid foot pains too. Sidi are over priced and not comfortable.
    My Speshy shoes were really comfortable for almost a year and then they seemed to fall right apart. I went with Sidi's and 5yrs later have never looked back.

    How could SIdi manufacture and sell so many shoes at the prices that they do if they were uncomfortable??

  22. #22
    Birdman aka JMJ
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    Comfort is king

    Quote Originally Posted by MellowCat
    Sidi are over priced and not comfortable.
    Depends on the person. My Sidi Dominator 4's felt like I'd been wearing them for a year right out of the box! I've had them at least 7 years now. Bought them on sale at a steep discount too.

    I've owned Specialized, Shimano, and Diadora MTBing shoes, and the Sidi's win hands down for comfort and stiffness. I picked up a pair of Sidi Bullets (3 velcro straps) for about $50 on closeout just in case my Dom's die.

    My wife has owned Northwaves, Diadoras, and Shimanos and also swears by her Dom's.

    The only weakness has been the toe spike threaded inserts stripping (I don't use toe spikes anyway) and the ratchet buckle starting to get a bit finicky on release.

    As for the hard plastic soles, I rarely have to hike-a-bike, so it's a non-issue for me.

    I'd say they're worth every penny!

    JMJ

  23. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by 10speedbiopacefreewheel
    see thats funny cause me and 4 of my buddies all happened to buy the same specialized shoes last season, on sale for approx. $100 at LBS, and 3/4 of us are strongly dissatisfied with the ratchet on it. maybe the design has changed.
    Pretty damn funny, I'd say.
    I only know 2 guys who've bought Specialized shoes, one is on his first warranty pair, the other on his second.

    Specialized Shoes!
    Craig, Durango CO
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  24. #24
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    Ratchets all the way! Velcro always gives out on REALLY muddy days. For example, just last weekend I did a 50mi marathon race on my SS in which the course got 5" of rain the day before. By the end of the race, the only thing holding the shoes on my feet were the ratchets.... I did have to spray them with water to open them, but they stayed on!

    Also, buy shoes according to fit, not brand... my wide toes love Shimano or Carnac. Skinny feet fit into Sidi. I had one pair & it was torture!
    Rule #5 almost always applies!

  25. #25
    jdg
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    I have a pair of those Specialized Tahoes and they've held up great through wet and dry after two years, well made. They are good for walking as the sole is a bit flexible. I bought a pair of Shimano M 182's which I like very much, stiff sole. Broke a ratchet and could not find a direct replacement for that model but found the ratchet from other models fit fine.

  26. #26
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    Quote Originally Posted by workingcat2
    Also, buy shoes according to fit, not brand... my wide toes love Shimano or Carnac. Skinny feet fit into Sidi. I had one pair & it was torture!
    Sidi Mega all the way.
    Craig, Durango CO
    "Lighten up PAL" ... King Cage

  27. #27
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    Quote Originally Posted by cbrossman
    Sidi Mega all the way.
    Back when I rode Sidi's, that wasn't an option! Now I just roll into new Shimano's almost out of habit every few years.
    Rule #5 almost always applies!

  28. #28
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    I've tried Sidi's several times. The issue is the lack of any base padding, their too narrow, and the support side to side is lacking. My Specialized shoes are 5 years old and work perfect. The pair I had before that I threw away mostly due to the sole chunking up and breaking afte several years of hard use. I don't like specialized as a company, but their shoes have worked great for me.
    "When the end of the world comes, I want to be in Cincinnati because it's always 20 years behind the times." Twain

  29. #29
    SSolo, on your left!
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    Quote Originally Posted by xls
    When I bought my last pair of shoes, I wondered about the same thing. Saw some reports about problems with the ratchets in rocky terrain. Like when you have to take your foot off the pedal and happen to hit the ratchet on a rock. More people seemed to dislike them than to like them.

    I don't really have the urge to adjust the tightness of my shoes while riding, but what Birdman says is the first thing I read where the ratchets have an advantage over regular velcro.

    For me, the fact that I could see no real advantage of the ratchets and the higher price made me buy shoes without them (Spesh Trail 110). I do like the fact they protect my ankle a little bit and they work great for SS. [/IMG]
    Laces and one top velcro strap for me, bought the Specialized Taho MTB shoes and love em. They are the best fit for my feet.....buy what FITS you the best and work with the fastening system unless you absolutely hate it. Spesh has a newer replacement ratchet buckle (supposed to be better) that is black/white instead of black/red. Less prone to mud fouling and breaking when smashed against rocks....supposedly. Bought the green (high arch) Spesh insoles at the same time and they really work great!
    Get off the couch and ride! :)

  30. #30
    is buachail foighneach me
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    Quote Originally Posted by workingcat2
    Ratchets all the way! Velcro always gives out on REALLY muddy days. For example, just last weekend I did a 50mi marathon race on my SS in which the course got 5" of rain the day before. By the end of the race, the only thing holding the shoes on my feet were the ratchets.... I did have to spray them with water to open them, but they stayed on!

    Also, buy shoes according to fit, not brand... my wide toes love Shimano or Carnac. Skinny feet fit into Sidi. I had one pair & it was torture!

    i've used velcro closure shoes from nike, carnac and shimano in absurdly muddy conditions with alot of walking and usually do not have to adjust at all, when i do, it's never been a problem, and taking them off is a snap.

  31. #31
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    As i was reading this yesterday morning I was pro ratchet. Then i went for a ride and took a digger and ripped out the part that receives the screw to keep the ratchet in place. So now i am anti ratchet. I hope pearl izumi will replace my shoes. If not looks like I am back to riding flats until I can get enough money for new shoes.

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