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We recommend using a clipless pedal system with our bikes. Picture 1. Clipless, or often called “clip-in”, pedal systems ensure that the foot cannot slip off the pedal. They are also effective in improving pedaling efficiency, by allowing you to push and pull on the pedals. This guarantees a more fluid pedaling style. A further advantage is that the ball of the foot is positioned over the axle of the pedal. This prevents accidental toe overlap with the front wheel when cornering.
Clip-in pedal systems operate in a similar way to the systems used on skis. The rider clicks into the locking mechanism of the pedal with the front of the cleat. With single sided pedals you need to flip the pedal to the correct side with the toe of your shoe before clipping in. Many pedals are double sided which eliminates the need to do this. The shoe clicks into the pedal with a clearly audible and noticeable “click”. The shoes is then disengaged from the pedal, on all systems, by twisting your heel outwards. In order to practice getting in and out of the pedals safely lean against a wall or get a helper to support you while you do it.
Adjustment and maintenance
There are often significant technical differences between the various pedal systems. However, there are some fundamental rules for adjusting pedals which apply to all models:
- Position the cleat on the shoe so that the ball of your foot is positioned over the pedal axle. Picture 2 The foot should find its natural position when pedaling. Often heels will be pointing slightly inwards with most people.
- Ensure that the bolts on your cleats are completely tight. If your cleat works loose it will be virtually impossible to disengage from the pedal. This can be dangerous and cause potentially damage to the shoe or pedal.
- Set the release tension adjustment of the pedal to meet your needs. If you are new to clip-in systems, we recommend that you set the release tension initially very low. You adjust the tension by turning the appropriate Allen screw and can then test the tension by clicking in and out with your shoes. Picture 3
- Exposed springs and mechanisms should be cleaned regularly and re-greased.
- Creaking and squeaking noises on cleat can often be remedied by a simple light application of grease to the contact areas between the cleat and pedal.
- Regularly check for signs of wear and tear on the cleats. When they become worn you will be able to feel that they are loose in the pedal. Cleats should be replaced regularly so the clip-in pedal system functions correctly.