pedal/cleat help

by muddydwarf   January 15, 2014  

Hello, new here.
I have a set of Shimano 105 pedals to go with my Diadora road shoes that are fitted with the yellow-tipped cleats with inbuilt float.
My problem is that no matter what i do to set up the pedals and cleats i just cannot get them to engage properly.
I have set the tension on the pedals to minimum, move the cleats around on the shoe etc, but they are really difficult to engage. I'm worried I'm going to have/cause an accident because I'm wrestling with getting my foot back into the pedal after setting off from a junction.

I went with Shimano because I'm used to their MTB pedals and find them very easy and reliable to use, the SPD-SL type though are a bloomin' nightmare!

Any help/tips gratefully received Smile

8 user comments

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Can you give us the model of pedals? Do they go in eventually, or not at all? I use SPD-SLs and some basic Shimano pedals, no problems on maximum tension. I cant think what the issue might be unless its something to do with the width of the access hole in the pedal...

posted by edster99 [160 posts]
16th January 2014 - 0:25

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Are you sure you have the Shimano cleat? It's an obvious question, but I believe Look do a yellow cleat. Apologies if that sounds patronising. My girlfriend has the 105s and yellow cleat and beyond her own initial problems with riding with cleats has never had a problem. Sometimes she gets crud stuck in the clear where it engages at the back. Only things I can think of. Anyone you can get to look at your cleat while you try to engage?

posted by Colin Peyresourde [1118 posts]
16th January 2014 - 3:50

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The pedals are Shimano 105's, 2013 models i believe & the cleats came with the pedals.
I find i have to force the cleats into the pedal with the heel of my hand sometimes, its that difficult!
Even when they do engage i cannot feel a 'click' that tells me I'm in & secure, unlike MTB SPD's.

posted by muddydwarf [12 posts]
16th January 2014 - 12:52

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I had a set of ultegra spd-sl pedals before they changed design from the plastic engaging plate to a metal one. I have the 105 pedals and I found that I have to have them at maximum tension to get a click but it is subtle and I do find myself giving a quick tug up before pushing down.

Not much of a help im afraid but it was something I played around with till I got a medium I was content with. I think there is a bedding period for sure.

posted by NIrish [23 posts]
20th January 2014 - 17:04

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I've got 105s also although on Specialized BG shoes. I did find when I first started with them that they were harder to engage than expected but that has improved over time.

What I can't say is whether that is me getting the hang of them, springs etc bedding in or wear on either the cleat or engaging mechanism. What I can say is that there has always been an audible 'clunck' when they were in. I haven't adjusted the tension from factory settings. It seems to me that the higher the tension the harder it will be to get them to engage?

Have you had a look at the cleat/shoe interaction? Don't know if some shoes work better than others with Shimano cleats?

posted by Nixster [73 posts]
20th January 2014 - 17:52

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That's a good point. Perhaps it is a very flat shoe base which means the gap for the pedal to engage between the shoe and the cleat is slightly undersize. That would make it tricky to get the pedal to engage. My Sidi sole is slightly curved so that there is definitely enough gap to get the cleat down past the pedal and for the pedal to snap shut immediately. If that is the case, I'm not sure what the answer would be other than to file down the thickness of the cleat a bit.

posted by edster99 [160 posts]
20th January 2014 - 19:20

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Yo ain't screwed them cleats on upside down, has yo?

Oi'll get me coat.


mike the bike's picture

posted by mike the bike [128 posts]
20th January 2014 - 19:44

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If you're sure they aren't upside down, make sure they are very tight into the shoe, as any slack makes them hard to get in....and out.

I use Look myself and if they're slack, they are a nightmare.

All Campag

posted by Flying Scot [524 posts]
20th January 2014 - 20:40

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