Ultegra SPD SL pedals....cleat help needed ???

blackgoff

Guest
About a few wks back I switched from Speedplay (zero's), which is a great pedal but the cleats are just soo expensive + the cleats need keeping in PRIME condition. Nice pedal though lol

Anyhow, never used SPD-SL's..but it was either them or Looks and the wide body pulled me' over Speedplays. I've also used Time Mag Ti's - which aren't such a bad pedal either
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The 'problem':

The cleats are pretty hard to release from the pedals, i've got them on the slackest spring tension. I run 3 pairs of shoes i make use of (bad weather pair / good weather pair etc...)

I have 1 set of yellow cleats (which are way too much movement imo) and 2x sets of blue which are just right for float

= ARE SPD-SL pedals stiff at 1st, after a wk or so, then get easier to release or is their a 'situation' here

???
 

DaveS

Active Member
Location
Suffolk UK
Check you have the tension backed off of course, but I have used SLs since they were introduced and also experience this issue. Trick seems to be to have a little weight on the pedal when you twist out, then they are silky smooth.
 

bpsmith

Veteran
My Ultegra pedals were very right when I got them, but had used only the cheap Light Action Shimano's before that, so thought nothing of it. Adjusted the tension recently and so much easier now. Have a fiddle with the tension some more?
 

Levo-Lon

Guru
I find spdsl's stiff with yellow cleat.
as Dave says ,I find putting a little downward pressure and twist works best.
after mtb spd they are a little bit of a faff but so much better on the road..imo
 

zacklaws

Veteran
Location
Beverley
Never had a problem with them, if anything I find them a bit loose, but still only set them to about 50% of the tension. The reason being for that is, on very long rides when I'm tired, I can sometimes struggle to unclip as I don't have the strength left to unclip.

But based on the above, maybe its the technique used to unclip, I snap my shoe out with a quick flick of the ankle, rather than a steady twisting action which is what I find I do when I'm tired and being unclipping all day, I just don't have the "snap" left in my leg for that quick unclip and thus find it hard to unclip.
 

buggi

Bird Saviour
Location
Solihull
They are easier to clip out if your foot is at 6 o'clock position. But remember to put your foot back to 12 o'clock position before actually stopping or you'll try and put the wrong foot down :biggrin:
 
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blackgoff

blackgoff

Guest
Thanx for all the replies... I was right then ;) yes Buggs' 6pm it is but on that fact ive realised that the foot has to be exactly level and square to release... The back spring ain't the problem it's the fact the cleat is held soo well with them! (maybe ize spoilt with the Speedplays lol) and a little pressure like DaveS says... Tho I can't help but feel they'll have a job of 'springing you out' should I take a flyer like the Time's - ejected you from them lol...

Such an interesting pedal tho. Doing some digging and they've more stack height of all the line of spd-sl's than the 105's and Dura Ace model/s, in that order. On the whole they hold your foot good and secure (as I know lol) and the platforms nice n wide ;) #recommended
 
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blackgoff

blackgoff

Guest
Also, got some yellow copy cleats from 'ebag' (5.99) and other than the bolts, they seem OK but longevity, reliability etc... #upfordiscussion
 

DaveS

Active Member
Location
Suffolk UK
Or better still, get some copy red cleats and file away the sides of the toe area to give the float you want.
 

wajc

Über Member
I bought some Ultegra pedals a couple of months ago and have only tried them when on my turbo trainer for a few minutes to practice unclipping. I'm saving them for my summer bike. I found them to be far more difficult to unclip than the spd pedals I normally use - even when set on the lowest tension setting.

Hopefully once I get the technique right it will be easier.

I also bought some covers to protect the cleats if I'm walking into a café etc as they can wear fast - hopefully will be safer as well !

not cheap for a couple of bits of rubber and these were the cheapest I could find

http://www.tweekscycles.com/cycling-clothing/shoe-spares/shimano-spd-sl-cleat-covers
 

DaveS

Active Member
Location
Suffolk UK
Not cheap as you say but lbs wants twenty quid for them so you got a good deal I use them and they last well. Ignore the obvious way of putting them on and off. For on, lift up your toe, resting on your heel, slide the cover on from the front to engage the toe lip first, then press the rear into place with your fingertips. For off, lift up your foot and rest down on the toe, heel upward and use your thumb to pull one of the back corners away from the shoe. Trying to use the tab is hopeless, especially when wet.
 

Billy Wizz

Über Member
Location
North Wales
I bought the shimano 105s with the yellow cleats because they where a little cheaper, i have them set on the slackest position i have only covered about 60 miles with them over the xmas break but i find them perfect cant wait for the good weather to see how they fair through the season.
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blackgoff

blackgoff

Guest
Out of desperation, (whisper) I sprayed wd40 on the inside of the cleat which faces the back of the cleat, and they're fine now. Though I done this whilst washing them & the bike, thus leaving a 'film' on the backplate. The post bike WAJC hits the mark on what ize pointing at, they are tight ! which isnt great for confidence esp. if youre a beginner with these pedals, like i mentioned, in a, dare i say it - crash, the cleats should release easily, on the 1 occasion when i did crash on Time and ive only stacked about 3 times in 10 yrs, but if you - do you WANT a pedal to release you. The Times were great for this, like an ejection motion. Speedplay much tougher but once it did release it was OUT...

Ive had the chance to click into an alu version of these and they release far more 'clearly', this is evident of the metal instead of the carbon body.

These're totally worth it tho, for the movement of the Blu cleat and the width + the overall practicality of the pedal.
 
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blackgoff

blackgoff

Guest
This is an UPDATE to this thread as someone may find it helpfull...

I've recently bought some Red tipped SPD-SL's cleats and these are exact to this:

Their is no movement from the back & front of the cleat like the Yellow & Blue, ONLY the front. This offers a little alleviation as well as the spring which moves if needed. If you've your foot position exact and only require slight offering of angular motion for the foot then the Red are your cleat.

So now run the Blue's on the training shoe and the Red on the racing shoe.
 
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