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Pound Solid
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
In an effort to preserve my knees (more float),I am going to buy some speedplay zero's. I see that they are available with a half inch longer spindle. Can anyone tell me what are the advantages to a longer spindle? I am a fairly tall person 6'2". Is anyone using the longer spindle? If so why and have you seen any benefits?My current pedal is the shimano 6700.

Thanks!
 

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Q-factor

Per Sheldon's site:

Tread ("Q Factor")

The tread, or "Q factor" of a crank set is the horizontal width of the cranks, measured from where the pedals screw in. The wider the tread, the farther apart your feet will be. It is generally considered a good idea to keep the tread fairly narrow. There are three main reasons for this:

* The hip joint is optimized for walking, and in normal walking the footsteps are pretty much in line, with little or no "tread."
* For standing pedaling, the farther out the pedals are from the centerline, the harder you have to pull on the handlbar to counterbalance the tendency of the pedaling force to tip the bike sideways.
* The wider the tread, the higher the bottom bracket needs to be to prevent clipping a pedal while pedaling through a turn.
 

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Some caution needed, IMO.

Banky said:
In an effort to preserve my knees (more float),I am going to buy some speedplay zero's. I see that they are available with a half inch longer spindle. Thanks!
If you have a serious knee problem now, guessing at the need for more float and longer spindles might not be all that wise. Some knee problems can be made worse by more float, a wider tread or both. Also, a half-inch longer spindle would put you at the statistical extreme end of tread width, as you can clearly see if you click through the illustrations at the link.

Not saying that lots of float and an extremely wide tread couldn't work for you. But it sounds like your question is based on an assumption rather than a diagnosis.

http://www.speedplay.com/index.cfm?fuseaction=cg.thumbs&cgid=6

/w
 

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Cycling induced anoesis
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I agree with Kuma and wim. More (or wider) is not necessarily better, with the (potential) adverse results just being different than the opposite (too narrow). If your knees aren't causing you discomfort with your current setup, why look for a solution to a problem you don't have.

If you want to be kind to your knees, read up on the positive effects of maintaining proper cadence.

Once at the link below, check out knee pain (medial) and the Cleat Position section, but there is also info re: cadence near the top of page.
http://www.cptips.com/knee.htm
 

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Well, it's a Saturday morning so I can't resist.

I asked the wife if 1/2 an inch would make much difference. She says another 1/2 inch would probably kill her.

I tried not to say it, I really did..but you cant just lob a title like that one into this forum and not expect a few swings at it. :) Ok, as my penance....I'm going to really torture myself on the bike today. Bad me...bad! woohoo!
 

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Pound Solid
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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
PJ352 said:
I agree with Kuma and wim. More (or wider) is not necessarily better, with the (potential) adverse results just being different than the opposite (too narrow). If your knees aren't causing you discomfort with your current setup, why look for a solution to a problem you don't have.

If you want to be kind to your knees, read up on the positive effects of maintaining proper cadence.

Once at the link below, check out knee pain (medial) and the Cleat Position section, but there is also info re: cadence near the top of page.
http://www.cptips.com/knee.htm
Thanks for the input, I have ridden with Time for 15 years, good float tough to get in and out of. Switched to Shimano (7 years) less float and not very free even with the lightest spring setting. My knees are not digging them. So I am going to change to the speedplay I just need to decide between the zeros or X's.
 

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Why Zero's????

If you want lots of float, why not Speedplay X-Series??
 

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How 'bout Look Keo pedals?

Banky said:
Thanks for the input, I have ridden with Time for 15 years, good float tough to get in and out of. Switched to Shimano (7 years) less float and not very free even with the lightest spring setting. My knees are not digging them. So I am going to change to the speedplay I just need to decide between the zeros or X's.
When I went to clipless, I chose Look pedals and have stayed with them. The red cleats have lots of float, gray a bit less.

A half inch change in the Q Facter seems like a lot, especially in the middle of the cycling season when your body and legs are grooved into your old system. Why not make the change in the spring?
 

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Banky said:
Thanks for the input, I have ridden with Time for 15 years, good float tough to get in and out of. Switched to Shimano (7 years) less float and not very free even with the lightest spring setting. My knees are not digging them. So I am going to change to the speedplay I just need to decide between the zeros or X's.
The X's huge amounts of float might be too much and even the Zero has plenty. Proper positioning combined with good technique-form does wonders. If all else on the bike is set-up well, .5-1mm cleat position changes might help in refining your pedal and cleat positioning. Bike fit can be very challenging and what may seem like one problem may not be.

For me, if I have the saddle low, I see-feel my knees doing figure 8's. Too high I toe more and it is uncomfortable on the calves. The body tells you and all these little symptoms can be hard to decipher. A bike fitting might also provide some hints for resolving your knee unhappiness.
 

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How did you come to the conclusion that your pedals are to blame for your knees?
I'm not saying you're wrong but reading between the lines it sounds like you're skipping the more logical places to look first first (cadance, cleat position, overall bike fit) and putting the blame on something that really shouldn't have any impact on your knees. yeah, zero degrees could do it but the pedals them self are just the platform for all else that goes on above them (in other words all pedals are pretty much the same as far as what they do once you're pedaling goes). If you have the proper form and cleat position you really shouldn't be using all the float anyway so getting 'more' is n/a. Unless you have some biomechanical issues, in which case again, randomly changing pedals is just guess work.
 

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Cycling induced anoesis
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I agree with those saying this is more likely a bike fit (specifically cleat setup) issue, not a signal to switch pedal systems. Doing so may either compound the problem or further muddle the fit issue, and you'll end up having to fine tune cleat set up with the new system as well.

Similar to Q factor, more (float) isn't necessarily better, but proper cleat positioning is critical. If you really want to spend some money, go for a bike fit.
 

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Fork out the cash and get a proper in depth fitting! I've seen more guys wreck themselves and spend thousands on parts when dropping $200-300 dollars for some objective opinion and analysis would have been far cheaper and less painful.

I know because I had also started down that path. Spent 3 hours and $300 on a rainy Saturday afternoon a year ago and, voila! No more pain, far better power, and I really enjoy riding for the first time in years.
 

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Pound Solid
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Discussion Starter · #15 · (Edited)
Lazy Spinner said:
Fork out the cash and get a proper in depth fitting! I've seen more guys wreck themselves and spend thousands on parts when dropping $200-300 dollars for some objective opinion and analysis would have been far cheaper and less painful.

I know because I had also started down that path. Spent 3 hours and $300 on a rainy Saturday afternoon a year ago and, voila! No more pain, far better power, and I really enjoy riding for the first time in years.
All good comments, I think my set up is ok but could be better. My seat hieght is good high enough with out any rocking of the hips. I plumb Bob my knee to the pedal spindle to get the proper seat position, I have moved my cleats back over the years but I am looking into finding some one to give me a fit. I will say one thing, I do not like the feel of the shimanos, they seem to fight against me if I have any heel float and I have the spring tension as light as it can go.
 

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Banky said:
All good comments, I think my set up is ok but could be better. My seat hieght is good high enough with out any rocking of the hips. I plumb Bob my knee to the pedal spindle to get the proper seat position, I have moved my cleats back over the years but I am looking into finding some one to give me a fit. I will say one thing, I do not like the feel of the shimanos, they seem to fight against me if I have any heel float and I have the spring tension as light as it can go.
No pedal system is right for everyone, so if the Shimano's aren't for you, so be it. But just as a FYI, adjusting spring tension has no effect on float, only the force required to clip in/ out.
 

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Pound Solid
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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
PJ352 said:
No pedal system is right for everyone, so if the Shimano's aren't for you, so be it. But just as a FYI, adjusting spring tension has no effect on float, only the force required to clip in/ out.
Yes but it also allows the float to move "slightly" more freely, not enough for my liking.
 

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Pound Solid
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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
MR_GRUMPY said:
Why Zero's????

If you want lots of float, why not Speedplay X-Series??
That was my thought, but after talking to someone who is more knowledgible on the knee than I, I was told that the knee is designed to rotate only so much approximately 6 degrees and to much rotation is not necessarily a good thing. Made sense so I am going to move on the zero's which have plenty of FREE float and I can dial it down if neccessary.
 

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Banky said:
Yes but it also allows the float to move "slightly" more freely, not enough for my liking.
You may think this is the case, but it's not true. The adjustment only relaxes or stiffens entry/ exit. That's all.
 

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Pound Solid
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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
morning ride

Well went out for a short spin this morning, PJ was right that adjustment on my shimano 6700's is strictly tension release not float. Checked my cleats and they were a little jacked toe in on the right. Made the adjustment to nuetral currently both cleats are all the way back. Seat height seems fine no side to side movement of the hips. I went ahead an ordered some zero's, I will give some feed back once I get them on and get some miles. Thanks for the input from everybody. Of course I did not go with the additional 1/2 inch spindle, I guess size does not always matter.
 
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