Clip less commuting- Mtbr.com
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  1. #1
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    Clip less commuting

    I am debating of changing my pedals to clipless was wondering how many people do it to there commuters

  2. #2
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    I do. I just make sure to have an extra pair of shoes, because the clipless ones are terrible for wearing all day, and I'd consider my clipless shoes to be pretty dang cozy.

    How far are you commuting?

  3. #3
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    I do. And frankly the *sole* reason I prefer it is that it makes shoe covers work way better, which I need because I'm too cheap to buy dedicated winter riding boots.

    edit: I have a change of shoes at work. Boat shoes/no socks all day, because I'm that guy.

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    It depends on the route but minium Is 5 miles but I also use the same bike for my longer riding trips. Yea am a diesel mechanic so I need to use steel toe boots

  5. #5
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    Yes. Much more efficient for me. And I am so used to clip less pedals that anything else frankly seems strange.

  6. #6
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    If I were you, I'd go with those pedals that are clipless on one side and platform on the other. That way since your work commute seems pretty short, you may as well ride in your boots. That way, you can also clip in for longer rides.

    If you can store boots at work, clip all the time though. I think sneakers are annoying to carry around, much less work boots.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by sunvalleylaw View Post
    Yes. Much more efficient for me. And I am so used to clip less pedals that anything else frankly seems strange.
    That's another thing, once you get used to clipped, everything else seems weird, but if you ride a mix of each you may not get that.

  8. #8
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    Which pedals do you recommend

  9. #9
    NDD
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    Oh phooey, I'll leave that to someone else. I can't think of a specific one. Shimano pedals work alright for me, but they have so many models I don't know what's what.

  10. #10
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    Yea am looking at the performance bike website and it's either the shimano A 530 for 80 bucks or forte campus pedals for 50 bucks.

  11. #11
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    I saw your other post. I hated dual-purpose pedals. I felt like I was always finding the wrong side.

    I've commuted with both clipless and toe clips at different times. I prefer clipless for athletic riding for a number of reasons. But IME, casual cycling shoes are kind of crappy. They're not enough better than running shoes on the bike and they're still uncomfortable and sometimes noisy and slippery off the bike.

    One summer, I left a pair of shoes where I was working and rode in on my racing bike, in cycling shoes. That worked pretty well. If you don't have to shuttle your work boots back and forth, that would be my suggestion.

    When I was doing stage craft at different locations every day, I just wore my work boots. They were a somewhat awkward fit in my toe clips, but worked okay. If I was riding somewhere where it didn't matter what shoes I wore, I wore runners. So if you can't leave your boots at work, that would be my other suggestion.

    I like Time ATACs and Speedplay, depending on whether it's for off-road or road riding.
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  12. #12
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    I would say the clip less pedals are good for commuting because once you are attached, you can push and pull to increase speed. That is good when at busy intersections and you need to get away from the silly automobile drivers. The dual clip less/flat pedal is good IMHO, because when I commute, I can clip in.....when I am casual riding with the kids around the neighborhood, I can wear regular shoes and not worry about anything....

  13. #13
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    Shimano M520. Cheaper, heavy duty, and they just work. I run them on all of my bikes, and will continue to. Commuting to work clipped in works for me because of the fixed gear for one, and that I can store my work shoes at work. Been clipping in now longer than I have used flats.
    The pedals turn, not just the left one, but the right one too.

  14. #14
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    I have Time ATACs on the cross bike and pinned flats (Deity) on the mountain bike, and commute on both. On my 8 mile ride, I save about 5 minutes with the cross bike, but I don't give the pedals much of the credit. The more traffic lights, the less I would be inclined to choose clipless.

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by sepulvd View Post
    Yea am looking at the performance bike website and it's either the shimano A 530 for 80 bucks or forte campus pedals for 50 bucks.
    The Shimano 530's will last near forever. I have the older 520's on two bikes that can attest to that.

    I have very little faith in anything Performance. Everything I've bought from their house brand sucks.

  16. #16
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    I'll be the dissenter, and say that a good pair of platforms (ones with replaceable pins - the molded ones just aren't grippy enough) can work fantastic. I've resisted clipless because around here it's winter for 6 months of the year, and I like being able to use random boots or whatever.

  17. #17
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    I use the shimano PD-M324 clipless on one side and normal on the other. I actually have them on both my bikes. I chose these cause they are all metal and you can use regular shoes with them for quick trips. I have mine on the lowest tension and have no issues slipping out. Only thing is gotta get used to twisting your feet slightly to disengage.

  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sanath View Post
    I do. And frankly the *sole* reason I prefer it is that it makes shoe covers work way better, which I need because I'm too cheap to buy dedicated winter riding boots.

    edit: I have a change of shoes at work. Boat shoes/no socks all day, because I'm that guy.
    LOL.

    I am the guy from that thing and wear these SPD puppies all day @ work Too bad Lake discontinued them... Keen makes a heavier/clunky variant of them too.

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  19. #19
    jrm
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    I commuted using clipless for 12 years and just recently switched to platform pedals in the last year due to repeated ankle soreness and achilles tendon injuries from riding clipless for so long and getting old. I began using running shoes and the shoes would deform so badly under pressure that it would reek havoc with my ankles so recently bought some 510 freeride shoes and diety platform pedals really like um.

  20. #20
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    Bicycle Stackexchange has a very detailed and good discussion relevant to this:
    Are there any scientific studies proving the benefits of clipless pedal systems? - Bicycles Stack Exchange

    I would advise checking it out as unlike MTBR it has a very high ratio of people who back up what they say, rather than type whatever fancy or myth first pops into their head.

  21. #21
    I'd rather be on my bike
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    I will back up what I say. I clip in all the time, on all of my bikes, to commute, and for fun rides. What do I need to back up? OP asked if anyone clipped in to commute. I said yes, and suggested some pedals.

    Not sure what in the hell you have going on here, but you need to check it.
    The pedals turn, not just the left one, but the right one too.

  22. #22
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    As someone who now makes his living dealing with quantitative reasoning, I still find it a bit off topic when someone tries to use science in a pedal discussion.

    Absent some reason not to, I prefer clipless pedals. I don't need a measurement to tell me that.

    I also prefer not to spend all day wearing clipless pedal shoes. Even if I lost 20% of my power output using toe clips and runners, I'd probably still commute that way for rides of five miles or less. I think the difference is much smaller. So it's really, for me, a matter of what shoes I want to wear, how positively I want my foot to be located, and that I find toe clips more annoying to use.
    "Don't buy upgrades; ride up grades." -Eddy Merckx

  23. #23
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    When I recently went to job training, my co-workers hooked me on the phrase, "All I got to do is ...," which they learned from Nate. They said Nate would work real slow and around when it was time to clock out, he would still not be close to finishing so the foremen would have send them to help him and he would invariably state, "All I got to do is," and basically list almost his entire workload minus the maybe 20-40% he actually finished.

    Well in the case of how most North Americans cycle before a commute, "all they got to do is,":
    1) Change in to their special spandex cycling uniform.
    2) Change their shoes or put on their special purpose built cycling clipless cleats, that are most often sub-optimal to the say the least for actually walking.
    3) Pack whatever they need for work like lunch and whatever clothes they will actually wear at work.
    4) Get the bike out the house/apartment.

    And it is not done there, because at work:
    5) take off the cleats and put whatever normal or work related shoes on.
    6) transform from their Lance Armstrong wannabe uniform to their normal Clark Kent clothes.

    I would advise checking out this article that shows a little bit of why in contrast to the typical nonsense above that is likely very common amongst higher income bicycle commuters in the dismal cycling culture of the USA, how the Dutch who actually have a real-life connected, utilitarian cycling culture look at their bikes:
    A view from the cycle path: Anatomy of a reliable, everyday bicycle

  24. #24
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    Not everybody that uses cleats wears spandex for every ride. I never wear spandex. It takes literally 45 seconds to swap out shoes. If it's hot enough/cold enough/wet enough you'll probably have to change clothes anyway.

    Not everyone who clips in does so for every ride. I don't unless I'm going at least 10 miles at a time, which is most of the time. I respect others opinions to not clip in. Because it's riding a bike and there's no reason to be so uptight and pretentious about it.

    Quite simply, just get over it.

  25. #25
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    Roy, your posts got old quick.

    I commute on platforms. Couple reasons why:

    For one, pedaling efficiency doesn't even factor into the equation for me. If anything, the flexy soles of running shoes during the summertime is less efficient. I just don't like wearing my 5.10's all day at work (tried that). It has everything to do with dealing with a 2nd pair of shoes. I tried carrying my shoes with me, but hated the space they take up. For awhile, I had an office situation where I could leave a pair of shoes in the office for the day. That system worked really well and if I could still do that, I'd probably have my clipless pedals installed on my Vaya. I currently am not able to leave a pair of shoes at work, so I am using platforms so I don't have to deal with another pair of shoes.

  26. #26
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    I work in a hospital. Regardless of what goes on, I have to change into scrubs when I get to work. I don't wear spandex. I don't even wear a jersey. Shorts and a t shirt or whatever the weather dictates. So yeah, while I am changing my clothes at work, the shoes have to come off any way, so that 45 seconds or whatever that it takes me to change my shoes, I live with it. Wearing my biking shoes at work wouldn't work as I am on my feet most of the day, and walk anywhere from 4-7 miles depending on what my job entails for the day. So even if I didn't clip and rode platforms, my shoes would still be coming off to change.

    I am trying really hard to not be sucked in by what I think might be a troll, but my buttons are being pushed, and my patience tested.

    OP - if you want to clip in, do so. If not, no biggie, rock the platforms. Me being on a fixed gear requires something, either straps, traps or clips. Just going with what I am already familiar with. Makes it that much easier when I ride and if I decide to ride more after work on a nice night I am already set to do so.
    The pedals turn, not just the left one, but the right one too.

  27. #27
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    Another pinned platform fan here. Just feels better on my feet and knees.
    Recalculating....

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    A lot of people here hate them but I use spd/platform double-sided pedals since I use the same bike on longer rides as well. And to complete the weirdo set-up, since I wear a suit&tie to work I normally just walk (it's not far), but when I ride I bring a change of clothes -but I'll have shorts and a t-shirt on with my leather shoes since I find carrying an extra pair shoes a hassle (I know I'm particular).

  29. #29
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    Quote Originally Posted by jrm View Post
    I commuted using clipless for 12 years and just recently switched to platform pedals in the last year due to repeated ankle soreness and achilles tendon injuries from riding clipless for so long and getting old. I began using running shoes and the shoes would deform so badly under pressure that it would reek havoc with my ankles so recently bought some 510 freeride shoes and diety platform pedals really like um.
    Hey JRM....I have never heard of anyone having tendon or other types of issues like that.....were you racing, jumping or some other type of activity....I am curios to know.

  30. #30
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    Yea My Main Reason For Asking Was I Might Be Able To Get Some Crank Brother Pedals For 40 Bucks Its Dual Purpose. One of the guys I worked with crashed on the trail second time using it and he wasn't able to disengage fast enough and and crashed into some broken twigs and got it embedded in his shin and calve

  31. #31
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    I've been using these shoes for years. They are so great for commuting I've purchased a few pairs as spares. No longer made but maybe you can find them still. They're comfy to walk around in and still have SPD clip in capability. Shimano SH-MT41

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    Also, when it rains, I put some neoprene covers to keep my shoes/feet dry..........Works great!!

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    Gmats I just found a pair for 46 bucks I wonder if it legit

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    I ride my mountain bike to the hospital to work and love my clipless...it's all downhill on the way there, so one the way home they help me get up the hills a little easier.

  34. #34
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tan&Green View Post
    Hey JRM....I have never heard of anyone having tendon or other types of issues like that.....were you racing, jumping or some other type of activity....I am curios to know.
    It`s actually quite common. Not everybody, and sometimes a different cleat system can fix it, but "infinite float" removes all doubt. For me, the biggest thing is being able to slide my foot forward or back at will.. Otherwise, I get foot pain after a few hours.
    Recalculating....

  35. #35
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    Go with the dual sided pedals. Shimano m530 at amazon for $45.

    I prefer clipped in but also ride with the kids and to coffee often and would like to have both options as well. I'm actually using m520 and dealing with it when wearing sneakers. Sucks but pedals are low on the list of bike stuff to buy

  36. #36
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    I've done both but have been riding flats for past couple years with cheap skate shoes. I leave the clipless pedals for trail riding. Either way, I change shoes at the office. There are advantages to each type of pedal/shoe, but I it's mostly a preference thing.

  37. #37
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    Clipless. I get a lot of my training miles in on my commuter to and from work. I like being securely attached to the pedals and it's more efficient. I keep another pair of shoes at work.
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  38. #38
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    Quote Originally Posted by sepulvd View Post
    Gmats I just found a pair for 46 bucks I wonder if it legit
    Could be, yes, the prices would be great because they've been out of "print" for a few years now. Still great, comfy. Only drawback - need some kind of covers when it is raining. I hate having wet feet all day long.........But oh, so comfy.

  39. #39
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    started on clipless for the commute (45km round trip) but now use 510 freeriders and flats. Stiff and grippy sole means I don't lose much in terms of contact with the pedal, and my commute ends in the CBD so stop/start and heavy traffic (cars and in the cycle lanes) so I'm on and off the pedals a lot. easier to walk around carpark/change rooms etc, but still change shoes when I get there

  40. #40
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    I use these on my commuter bike. Almost as good as clippless but don't need special shoes. You get extra-long ones you can use with large boots. Cheap and effective.

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  41. #41
    I'd rather be on my bike
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    I worry about not being able to get my feet out of those quickly enough in an emergency stop if needed. If the strap is tight enough to hold your foot in place, and with the teeth on the pedal and any traction on your shoe, I could foresee a problem getting my foot on the ground.
    The pedals turn, not just the left one, but the right one too.

  42. #42
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    If I didn't reach down and tighten my toe straps, it wasn't a big deal.

    I've never tried power straps, but I think they were supposed to be easier.

    The old school setup was a cleat and a toe strap. I'm not quite old enough to have used it, but that had a really nasty reputation for being difficult.
    "Don't buy upgrades; ride up grades." -Eddy Merckx

  43. #43
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    Quote Originally Posted by TenSpeed View Post
    I worry about not being able to get my feet out of those quickly enough in an emergency stop if needed. If the strap is tight enough to hold your foot in place, and with the teeth on the pedal and any traction on your shoe, I could foresee a problem getting my foot on the ground.
    No, they work well.

    The clever part is that the strap is diagonal. You put your foot in and out at an angle and when you straighten up your foot it tightens into the strap. It becomes second nature. Even with the straps loose enough to let you get your feet in and out very easily they still offer good security and inspire confidence. I've put a few people onto them and they all like them.

    Ultimately not as good as clippless but ideal if you want to use normal shoes.

  44. #44
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    ^ I ride my errand bike with classic toe clips and straps, and never tighten them. They even fir my winter boots. I hate open rat traps and I just like how the toe clip positions my foot and the light feeling of the foot being gripped. So with loose straps it is fast to get out of. The classic Campy pedals present well when mounting for getting the second foot in and it is an old well established process. My long gone Italian shoes with clips needed more anticipation of dismounting when the straps were cinched tight than clipless systems do. In town, I did not fully tighten the straps so I could get my foot out fast.

  45. #45
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    I started using clipless on my commuter when I started wearing my winter MTB shoes in the rain. I keep sneakers in the office and other wise wear my work stuff on the bike.
    I use platform style clipless (Crank Brothers Mallet) on the dedicated commuter so I can do short hops in sneakers. I also use my CX bike a lot for summer commuting and I don't want to swap pedals so I commute clipless a lot.
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  46. #46
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    Being a clipless user for mtb and road riding, I thought I ought to try it for my commute. I found it a hassle and a waste of time. I find it so much more convenient just to run flats and the difference in efficiency is really not that big of a deal. Actually, unless I was really hammering it, it probably makes no difference in speed for me. On my 5 mile commute I am sure I spent more time changing shoes then I saved by running clip-less, and it was just one more thing to think to pack (extra shoes).
    15mm is a second-best solution to a problem that was already solved.

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