Switching to road clipless pedals

After 40,000+ km on mountain bike style SPD clipless pedals, I’ve finally made the transition to “proper” road pedals.

I’ve had regular SPD pedals on all my bikes and never had an issue.  I don’t feel like I’m losing any watts in power transfer, although it’s hard to quantify that one. I like that the metal SPD cleats basically never wear out and you can walk easier. So why the “upgrade” then? Well, actually I don’t really know. It just seemed like time. I’ll keep the old shoes/pedals for use on my winter/turbo bike.

The larger contact patch and cleat size of the road clipless pedal and shoe combo is supposed to give better support, increased efficiency and higher overall comfort. The soles on road shoes are usually much stiffer too, the ones I bought rate at 10 on the Shimano shoe stiffness scale, as opposed to 9 on my older shoes. Not exactly an earth shattering difference but I guess it’s all about those marginal gains!

Does size matter? Road cleats VS mountain bike SPD cleats.

And yes, I pretty much bought the same shoes as I had! My Shimano XC7 mountain bike shoes have been replaced with the road equivalent, RC7 shoes.

With only a single 100km ride under my belt using the new shoes and pedals I have no complaints, but that’s not enough time to give any true judgements yet. I’ll let you know my thoughts as I rack up a few more rides.

8 Comments Add yours

  1. i would imagine you never walk up a hill so will be great. if you have to walk then if does look odd.


    1. No walking up hills. I’m more concerned about spilling my double espresso as I clatter around the cafe!


  2. bgddyjim says:

    You won’t feel much difference from a 9 to a 10. Guessing your mtb shoes are carbon as well?

    I went from a 5 mtb shoe to a 13 pro road shoe and let me tell you, I could tell the difference!

    The larger cleat area should be better on your feet over long rides, though. That you should notice.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. sevencyclist says:

    I remember when I switched from SPD to Look, that it just felt different. I don’t know if it means more power, but I guess there was more of a comfort factor with me … but then again, this was about 8 years ago.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Marco says:

    I’m thinking about the same as things get more serious. So far I’m happy with SPD and my stiff Giro Republics. Let us know if you feel a difference!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Will keep you posted! :-)


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