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· chamois creme addict
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I have been a loyal Time user for the past 10 years. Equipe Pro (TBT system), then Impact, then RXS, then back to Impact. I am currently not happy with my Impacts, they creak, they look like death and I am finding I have too much outward roll of my feet. I tried the Time RXS last season but I didn't really care that much for them. I had some vertical play and clicking on the right pedal after only one month.

At any rate, I'm thinking of changing but the competition is also not without issues. Here is a summary of complaints from reviews and general feedback.

Speedplay Zero - cleats wear relatively fast and are fussy for setup. If left too long, a worn cleat will damage the pedal body and possibly score the spindle.

Shimano SPD-SL - cleats wear the pad on the pedal and if not replaced soon enough, eventually the pedal body will wear as well. Excessive lateral float sensation with floating cleat.

Look Keo - cleat wear is rapid, no bumpers to protect cleat during walking and unclipping. At least one report of a broken spindle. Some claim the tension adjuster interferes with the shoe sole.

Time RXS - I had some vertical play in the system after only one month. The wire clip that sits in front of the cleat was loose in the pedal body and I'm sure this was the source of the play. I also have this with one of my Impact pedals. There was no way to tighten it up. A few reports of the right pedal body on the RXS unscrewing from the spindle assembly (it is not reverse threaded).

Crank Brothers Quattro - sorry, not on my list.

Any thoughts or opinions? I'm leaning towards the Dura-Ace SPD-SL at this time. Does the lateral float sensation feel like Time's lateral float? Also, I have read reports that the SPD-SL fixed cleat is really not that "fixed" and still allows some rotation. True?

If it matters, I'm using Sidi Genius 5 Carbon shoes (same sole as this year's Genius 5.5 Carbon HT). And my components are Campy, so there is obviously a part of me that cringes at the thought of using S-pedals.

Maybe I should just find some NOS Time Equipe Pro pedals and Carnac Quartz shoes and go back to my 2002 setup. Heavy, ugly and comfortable!
 

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I guess I view the whole setup as "wear items"- not unlike tires. I use Ultegra SPD-SLs-- no point paying double to save a few grams (with the DA) on a bike part that will be thoroughly uglified in a few weeks. Yes-- everything wears. But at around $100 to replace-- inlcuding a new set of cleats, why worry if the pedal body will eventually wear out?

Frankly- I would avoid the reviews. Most are from people who love a new bike part that they have owned for a few weeks (or days)-- or else people with an axe to grind because they had a bad experience. If you don't like the Shimano, get the Keos... I probably would have if they existed when I was buying pedals.

Eric_H said:
I have been a loyal Time user for the past 10 years. Equipe Pro (TBT system), then Impact, then RXS, then back to Impact. I am currently not happy with my Impacts, they creak, they look like death and I am finding I have too much outward roll of my feet. I tried the Time RXS last season but I didn't really care that much for them. I had some vertical play and clicking on the right pedal after only one month.

At any rate, I'm thinking of changing but the competition is also not without issues. Here is a summary of complaints from reviews and general feedback.

Speedplay Zero - cleats wear relatively fast and are fussy for setup. If left too long, a worn cleat will damage the pedal body and possibly score the spindle.

Shimano SPD-SL - cleats wear the pad on the pedal and if not replaced soon enough, eventually the pedal body will wear as well. Excessive lateral float sensation with floating cleat.

Look Keo - cleat wear is rapid, no bumpers to protect cleat during walking and unclipping. At least one report of a broken spindle. Some claim the tension adjuster interferes with the shoe sole.

Time RXS - I had some vertical play in the system after only one month. The wire clip that sits in front of the cleat was loose in the pedal body and I'm sure this was the source of the play. I also have this with one of my Impact pedals. There was no way to tighten it up. A few reports of the right pedal body on the RXS unscrewing from the spindle assembly (it is not reverse threaded).

Crank Brothers Quattro - sorry, not on my list.

Any thoughts or opinions? I'm leaning towards the Dura-Ace SPD-SL at this time. Does the lateral float sensation feel like Time's lateral float? Also, I have read reports that the SPD-SL fixed cleat is really not that "fixed" and still allows some rotation. True?

If it matters, I'm using Sidi Genius 5 Carbon shoes (same sole as this year's Genius 5.5 Carbon HT). And my components are Campy, so there is obviously a part of me that cringes at the thought of using S-pedals.

Maybe I should just find some NOS Time Equipe Pro pedals and Carnac Quartz shoes and go back to my 2002 setup. Heavy, ugly and comfortable!
 

· Old enough to know better
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720 Posts
Why not consider regular Crank Bros Eggs? I ve had my pair for two years now, none of the issues that some have stated with the Quattro. I think you d like the "road cleat" design they have as the rubber lifts the metal cleat body pretty much off the ground. Super easy to care as well. Give em a try you might just like them.
 

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Dura Ace SPD SL

I had my for over 1 year now and I'm pretty satisfied with it. At first I didn't like the "pin down" feeling and I was getting hot spots. But after several centuries I got use to the feeling and my hot spots went away. I feel that these are more secure fit than other pedals out there. I like "Free Float" feeling of the Speedplay pedals their easy on the knees. But their cleats are a pain to take care of? Also if you get a little dirts or rocks in the cleats, you will have a devil of a time clipping in and out. I also like the Crank Brother's pedals because of their simple design (no spring tension and adjustments) and dual entry features.

I agree that this is more of a "Feel issue" than a product issue. All the different pedals have their Pros and Cons so buy the pedals that you feel the most comfortable with?
 

· Adrenalina Italiana
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987 Posts
I like the Look Keos myself

and agree that the cleats do wear rather rapidly when walked on alot.This is the only complaint that I have and this is easily solved by using the cleat covers that come with the cleats.

I also like the new time RXS pedals,but prefer the Keos because of the larger contact area and feel more stable while digging out of the saddle.
 

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I like the SPD-SLs. The cleats last a long time. The wear pad on the pedals last too. I think I need to replace the ones on my oldest Ultegra pedals soon. They have about 15,000 miles on them.

If you don't like float, get the non-float cleats.
 

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I'm also going to have to cast my vote for DA SPD-SLs. What can I say? They just work. I feel kind of the same way about hubs, though, and everything else, and might be a little skewed: there's no real point to buying a moving part from anyone other than Campy or Shimano. (Sounds a little ridiculous, but I can't think of any exceptions...OK. I do use a King headset, but I think my next frame will get Record, just for yucks.)

SPD-SLs seem heavy on paper, but the cleats are light (lighter than my RXS at least, and I broke two sets of those before eBay'ing the pedals and four broken cleats, and getting the DAs) and the pedals are usually below stated weight (274g for mine). They feel very solid, and the float actually floats, unlike my experience with Looks, both delta and Keo. As for the little plastic thing - they give you a spare set with the cleats that come with the pedals, and then new cleats ($12 or so retail?) also include two new sets. They're a cinch to change, and (I think) better that than the ultra-light, ultra-plastic pedal body on the RXSs.
 

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Great Synopsis

ERIC,

good succint rant...you pretty much nailed the drawbacks of all these pedal systems on the head. another reason that I have a big problem with three bolt pedal cleats is consistancy. I am a big fan of LOOK pedals. I think they have the best platform, but the constant cleat replacement gets old. And you always wonder if you really got the cleat back in the exact place. I know LOOK supplies a sticker to help with cleat replacement, but I usually end up screwing around with cleat adjustment more than once.

SOOO, switched to TIME RXS Carbons. You can get these cleats in a neutral position, and it is very consistant and reproducible. Cleat wear is very good but there is no "zero float" option. I used the black fixed cleat when I rode LOOKS.

Anyways you are absolutely right, my pedals are guilty of the dreaded CREAK, and there is a bit too much lateral play for my preference.

I have been tempted to look into Speedplays again. Last time I tried them, I hated the feel.

The best pedals are ones that you don't have to think about. Hopefully someone will come up with one in our lifetime.
 

· n00bsauce
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13,627 Posts
Well, every pedal will look like death after a bit of use so throw that reason for changing out. Many, if not most pedals, will creak at one time or another. Some more than others. Have you tried Pledge or other types of wax or dry lube (graphite) on the pedals/cleats? FWIW, I have four sets of impacts of various vintages and none of them creak. Regarding outward roll. I suspect it's a cleat alignment problem or a shoe problem rather than a pedal problem. The Impacts have a large platform as road pedals go. I've got a big foot (sz. 12) and used to have some hot spots on the outside of my right foot in particular. I also thought or felt like my foot was rolling to the outside of the pedal. A slight modification of the footbed in the shoe cured this problem.

I'm not trying to convince you that your Impacts are the best pedal for you but I'd sure try some of these very inexpensive fixes before resorting to buying new pedals.
 

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keo's.

keo sprints are really really cheap off probikekit. add in some cleat covers and a backup set of cleats (come together) for around 20 bucks and you are good to go.

edit - i should say i got the keos maybe 3 months ago and i am very very happy with them. i use cleat covers religiously and the wear (While not as good as that of a metal cleat) isn't really THAT bad.
 

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Look pedals

I have tried them all - but I still think that Look (next to Time) makes the best pedal bar none. For three years (with regular rehaul), my pedals (Look CX-6 - the carbon fiber ones, with a cro-moly axle and adjustable float and Q-factor) NEVER creak. I ride about 100-175 miles a week, it's hell on tires, wheels (especially the bearings), and the drivetrain (derailleurs, cassette, chain, shifting, shifting indexing, etc.). For sure, Look pedal cleats wear out like that - I wear Kool Kovers over my Look cleats. My Look cleats last me 800-1,000 miles, and the new Look Delta cleats (Teflon added on three corners) last a little bit longer - I never have a problem with arranging my cleats perfectly. I like Look because it has a decent platform and my knees are so-so (adjustable float). I never liked the old SPD, and the new SPD cleat is too large for me and doesn't have enough float. A friend of mine let me borrow some Speedplay pedals - the platform was too small on a one-hour ride (I felt like a spike was going through the ball of my foot). Look is the oldest clipless pedal maker around.

The problem with the Keo pedal is that is doesn't have adjustable float (fixed or 9 degrees, that's it), and it's set at a lower stack height, so I have to adjust my saddle to compensate.

Pedal manufacturers (just like every road bike component manufacturer) overestimate the lightness of the pedal. Saddles, wheels, skewers, tires, tubes, handlebars, cranksets, brakes/shifters, brakes, derailleurs, headsets, seatposts, etc, It seems the only accurate weight measure is the frame. I noticed that Italian component manufacturers are more accurate, but not always. My Selle Italia Flite saddle (advertised weight is 215 grams) weighed at 238 grams, I have a very accurate scale. The weight difference is over 10 percent!
 
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dhtucker4,

there is a grey keo cleat available that allows only 4.5 degrees of float, so that will get you in between the 9deg and fixed options.
 

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The pedal inserts on the Shimano SPD-SL pedals cost $7 for a new pair when I ordered a set through the local shop. It's a 'maintenance replacement' type part for the pedals, that Quality carries. Compared to the way look cleats wear out and develop slop the first time you walk across a parking lot, the SPD-SLs last forever. I replace mine at the beginning of each season (and the inserts) just out of habit, to keep things nice and tight. It's also nice to be able to easily clean out the spindles and relubricate the bearings. Add a 2 year warranty (3 on the DA) and I can't beat them with a stick. Although I still yearn a bit for the 'tight' feel of the SPD-R setups (even if they were hard to engage/exit)...

RARELY (if ever) am I not clipped in with my second foot before I complete my first pedal stroke, and when racing, that means right to safety at the front into the first crit/crash corner.

Time Impacts were too hard to get into compared to shimano, and all the new Look/Time designs just look too gimmickey to me. Double sided entry for the cranks/speedplay designs are a moot "advantage" because the single sided shimano/look designs are weighted to consistantly hang in toe up orientation, which makes entry the same, every time.

I also argue against adjustable float. I rotate my cleats such that I naturally wind up at the "heels inward" edge of the float window, and pretty much just stay there. I don't think anybody with a good pedal stroke needs their foot to be able to move around from one stroke of the crank to the next. Rather, float just gives you the flexibility to make sure your ankles are 'set' in the right position, versus the tedious "get it in the perfect spot" maneuvering of fixed cleat setup.

I've always heard great things about the campy pedals, and tried a set myself. Liked them as much as the shimanos, but had no reason to switch.

I've got 2.5 full seasons on my set of D/A pedals. I've switched them from bike to bike twice now. That comes out to about 15,000 miles. Never heard a peep out of them. Generally I swap cleats/pedal covers at about 5 or 6000 miles. Lost faith in one of them last month, but turned out to be a bottom bracket on the way out, so all is good. I lubed the axles about 2000 miles ago, and the bearings/axles looked great. I've got two sets of ultegras that I got for backups years ago - and looks like they'll stay on the slelf for a long time. They look like crud from clipping them in corners, but functionally they're like new, and since they hang out on the bottoms of my feet, I can't complain about appearance. I just hope shimano isn't about to 'redesign' them, like they tend to do every few years.
 

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I've progressed through Time Impact, Shimano SPD-SL, Look Keo and Campy Pro-Fit Plus. I ride the Campy now because they match the bike and are shiny.

Pay me and I'll ride any pedal you want me to. They all work fine.

I had minor problems with each pedal, but no deal breakers. I have ridden each pedal system thousands of miles except the Campy, which I just got this month.


Time Impact: Impossible to find cleats locally. Cleats are a bit expensive. Pedal body got beat up fast, but it never affected the function of the pedal. A pal of mine had one of the wire bars pop out during a ride once. Easy to walk in. Cleats lasted a very long time. The self centering float didn't hurt me but I wouldn't choose it on purpose. Never had an accidental unclip. Very easy to clip in due to way pedal hangs. Personally don't need lateral float.

Shimano SPD-SL (Ultegra): I wore out pedal body inserts at an alarming rate. Cleats easy to find and reasonably priced. Very easy to walk in. Cleats lasted a long time. Had one accidental unclip. Very easy to clip in due to way pedal hangs. Personally don't need lateral float. Would feel weird using them on a Campy bike.

Look Keo (Carbon): Very light weight. Very easy release. Pedal body and mating surfaces wear very fast. Cleats wear out quickly. Nice float feeling. Impossible to buy rubber cleat buttons, which I wear out very quickly. Very hard to walk in. Cleats pretty easy to find and priced reasonably. Never had an accidental unclip. Moderately easy to clip in due to way pedal hangs.

Campy Pro-Fit Plus (Record): Very pretty. Cleat engineering appears to be wear proof. Will have to order cleats online. Built in cadence magnet is cute. Right now the bearings are not broken in so the pedal doesn't free-hang, so clipping in isn't easy. No other comments because I have very few miles on them yet.


Cleat cost is a major issue for me. As much as I liked Keo pedals the fact I wore out 6 sets of cleats last year worries me. The previous year I wore out 5 sets of SPD-SL cleats. I only wore out 2 sets of Time cleats. We'll see how the Campy cleats hold up.
 
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