Deepthi Velkur reviews the Shimano Ultegra PD R8000 Carbon SPD SL Road Clipless Pedal, a recommended buy for cyclists.
Growing up, getting on a cycle meant open roads, gorgeous natural beauty and the rush of wind in your hair. I’m sure you never really thought about the type of bike pedals you had on. Other things mattered – that cute little basket hanging in front of your bike, a fancy looking bell or the colourful streamers on your handlebars. Times change and so do we, I’m sure the way you think of cycling today is a whole lot different.
We all have different reasons to cycle – fitness, fun, the thrill of participation, whatever be the reason having the right type of pedals could make all the difference for a smooth and powerful ride.
Choosing the right bike pedal depends on the type of riding you prefer- road biking, MTB or general commute. It also depends if you’re looking for pedalling efficiency from different pedals such as the clipless pedals, the manoeuvrability, and ease of flat pedals or get the benefit of both from the hybrid pedals.
In this read, we’re going to take a look at clipless pedals in a bit more detail:
This system of pedalling keeps the riders foot attached to the pedal with the help of special cycling shoes and cleats attached to the bottom of the shoe. When the shoe comes in contact with the pedal, it is clipped in and stays intact. The key benefit is that they allow you to utilise more of your key muscles throughout the pedal stroke which gives greater forward propulsion with every revolution, particularly in the upstroke when the hamstring is engaged.
Here are some of the most popular features you would find in the clipless shoe pedal –
|Road Biking||Mountain Biking, commute or touring|
|Pedal style||3-hole (Look, Time or SPD-SL styles)||2-hole (SPD, crankbrothers, Time styles)|
|Cleat style||Protrudes from sole||Recessed into sole|
|Shoe sole||Very stiff||Stiff|
Mountain Bike Pedals: MTB Clipless pedals feature cleats with a 2-hole design and is often referred to as the “SPD” system (Shimano Pedalling Dynamics)where screws go through 2 holes securing the cleat to the 2 slots at the bottom of a compatible shoe. This allows you to move the cleat back and forth to achieve a proper angle for ease of engagement and maximum comfort. Shimano is one of the first companies to develop this system and continues to be a leader in the market today.
Road Bike Pedals: Clipless pedals for road biking feature cleats that come with a 3-hole design. This is called a “Look” type cleat or the newer SPD-SL system. These cleats are made out of plastic and are larger which protrude farther from the sole of the shoe when compared to the 2-hole design. The advantage of this larger cleat design is that it is able to spread the force applied to the pedal over a wider area.
Our choice of pedals that we are looking into further is the Shimano Ultegra PD-R8000 SPD-SL Pedals
The latest model of Shimano’s Ultegra PD-R8000 pedals are time tested, reliable and is considered one of the most proven pedals on the market. It comes as an incremental change from its previous model R6800 and with a design very similar to that of the top end Dura Ace models. They are light- weight with lower stack height that keeps you low on the bike allowing you to confidently maneuvre around the corners. The pedals are very slim, durable, cheap and easy to maintain. With a carbon body, stainless steel spindle and a slightly longer axle to prevent heel rub, the pedals provide a hassle-free ride for longer durations.
- Weight 248g
- Stack height-0.7mm lower than R6800
- Cleat included- SM-SH11
- Road clearance- 33 °
As a standard, the pedals come with cleats and can be adjusted +/- 3 degrees. The wide platform provides a solid connection with the three bolt cleats leaving you feeling secure and confident. These pedals are available on www.amazon.in and are priced at INR 22,648.