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  1. #1
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    Smile Look Vs Shimano road cleats/pedals

    I have heard many conflicting opinions on the choice between Look and Shimano road cleats/ clipless pedals. What are your thoughts, as I am needing to make a decision for my first road bike. I currently use Crank Bros MTB cleats on a flat bar road bike.

    Thanks for your help.

  2. #2
    zac
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    Quote Originally Posted by Optomrider
    I have heard many conflicting opinions on the choice between Look and Shimano road cleats/ clipless pedals. What are your thoughts, as I am needing to make a decision for my first road bike. I currently use Crank Bros MTB cleats on a flat bar road bike.

    Thanks for your help.
    Other than you can "walk" in the Shimano SPD-SL cleat, they're both good. Flip a coin, seriously.

    Sorry, not what you are probably looking for, but you won't go wrong with either and you will like both.

    zac
    Last edited by zac; 03-14-2009 at 03:51 AM.

  3. #3
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    +1 for walkability in Shimano cleats. I used to use the old Look pedals and when I got off the bike I had to know how to ice skate or carry and use the cleat covers ( something else to remember). Other than that not a huge difference.

  4. #4
    RoadBikeReview Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by andulong
    +1 for walkability in Shimano cleats.
    Well, there's not just the walking, but the wear. I went through several Look cleats a season. Shimano cleats are lasting me at least a year. At $20 a pair, that's something to consider also.

  5. #5
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    Look cleats wear out fast and they go for about $20.00 a pop..I've gone through a lot of Look pedals as their bearings eventually go south. I think next time around I will go Shimano.

  6. #6
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    Crank Brothers quattro road pedals are very nice and work with egg beater cleats but are being discontinued. I would certainly consider time rxs pedals. They are similar to looks in design but come with a cafe cleat that is much easier to walk in. Basically you get the nice size of he look platform, secure and stable entry and exit and a cleat that is easy to walk in. I don't want to throw in mode choices but I think you should give the times a look.

  7. #7
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    I was a diehard LOOK fan until about 4 years ago...

    I switched to Shimano and haven't looked back..... The Shimano cleats last much longer and you can walk in them...
    Dave Hickey/ Fort Worth

    My 3Rensho Blog: http://vintage3rensholove.blogspot.com/

  8. #8
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    You know, I ride both look (Keo classic) and shimano (105 level). Admittedly I don't walk around much with my road shoes except into my house after a ride, then I take my shoes off. My look and shimano cleats unsurprisingly are in pretty good condition.
    Of note, you can get cleat covers for when you walk around.
    As for the ride, I prefer the look...I think I can feel the fact that the keo is lighter, and the bearings are a little smoother (maybe because they are newer though). Clipping into Shimano is more natural the way the pedals are weighted I think. With the look I have to kind of flip the pedal to clip in.
    I also ride crank brothers on my cyclocross bike, and they work, still getting used to them though. I prefer the bigger flatter platform of a more road specific pedal for my road bike though.
    In reality, the next pedals I get will likely be look or shimano, whichever one I get for cheaper. I've heard bad things about wellgo and performance brands. I've never used the speedplays, but I think they are supposed to be very light and you can clip in on both sides of the pedals as well as a lot of free float. But again, haven't tried them, and don't know how the cleats are.

  9. #9
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    I have Look & Shimano on my roadies. Slightly prefer Look for ease of entry/exit & lighter weight. Have not noticed a significant difference in cleat wear, unless you walk on regular Keo cleats. BTW- Look now has a cleat you can walk in without covers (Keo Grip).

    I also have Crank Bros but do not have enough miles on 'em to give an opinion except that ease of entry is much easier (2-sides pedal).

  10. #10
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    I havent ridden the Looks. When I was looking for pedals I found the Shimano range easier to understand. I've now got one paid of Ultegra pedals I've owned since new, and two pair of DA7800 pedals I got on ebay for 12 each (no cleats).

    Last year www.probikekit.co.uk had the team edition shimano pedals for very cheap prices, I think like $US30 or 40 incl cleats! They had Gerolsteiner and a few others. I'd def recomend them as a great place to start.

    I found the Looks had a huge range in price, and because I couldnt follow what was what, I wasnt sure where the best value/performance ones were in the range.

  11. #11
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    My first clipless pedals were Looks. They squeaked so much. But I hear the Keos have taken care of this problem. Any way I have ridden Shimano for about 6 years and really like them. Although I have thought about trying out a pair of the Keos.

  12. #12
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    Anyone have experience with Time RXS? How do they compare with Look and Shemano.

  13. #13
    SloPost
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    Like many others replying to the OP's question, I have both on different road bikes.

    Prefer the Look's: a) for me easier clipin b) a 'seemingly' larger platform c) easier for me to adjust float.

    Don't walk in my shoes so cleat wear is only that on the bike and haven't noticed big differences.

    As with most things on bikes it always seems to come down to perception and YMMV.
    Cheers
    I started out with nothing & I've almost got that paid for

  14. #14
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    You can walk in the grey look keo cleats too....they have rubberized contact points now...just check out the website...

    I've used both Look and Shimano road pedals....still in love with my keo sprint pair...

    Cheers,

    A.

  15. #15
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    Looks squeak

    Quote Originally Posted by ryanbwv
    My first clipless pedals were Looks. They squeaked so much. But I hear the Keos have taken care of this problem. Any way I have ridden Shimano for about 6 years and really like them. Although I have thought about trying out a pair of the Keos.
    + 1 I used Looks for many years but finally got to where I couldn't stand the squeaking anymore and switched to Shimano SPD-SL's.

    Look - More comfortable and had a better platform, easier to click in/out (even out accidentally at times), lighter, cleats definitely do wear out faster.SQUEAK no matter what you try to stop it.
    Shimano - Less float than Look, more positive but harder click in/out, quiet (no squeak at all), cleat s last much longer

    I prefer Shimano. I found Shimano DA SPD-SL on Ebay for about the same as the Ultegra MSRP.
    _______________________________
    You might try being a bit more humble. It will most likely serve you well. You probably aren't as good or as fast as you think and you are probably the only person that cares. Unless you're being paid to ride you are taking yourself and the sport WAY too seriously....it's a recreational sport.

    Lighten up Francis!

  16. #16
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    For road use and not much walking, I would get neither SPD-SL nor Keo. I much prefer Speedplay Zero (stainless steel or chromoly).

  17. #17
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    I had forgotten how my Looks used to squeak.

    I had several pairs of Looks, then took a side trip to Crank Quattros, then went to Shimanos on the advice of my bike fitter. Good choice, they don't squeak!
    Not saying I wouldn't use Looks, it's just that with the Shimanos I need look no further.
    It was GREEN, officer!

  18. #18
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    I have both. Shimano on my road bike, Look Keos on my TT bike. I like the feeling of the keos better than the shimanos, but what everyone has pointed out about the cleats is certainly true. The grey look cleats with the rubber on the bottom makes it possible to walk around, but at the same time makes it more challenging to actually clip in. I feel that they spin more smoothly though, but maybe just because I have the bottom of the line shimanos :-P

  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by orthobiker
    Anyone have experience with Time RXS? How do they compare with Look and Shemano.
    I started using Time pedals in 1989 with their 1st gen pedal. great pedal but the front cam would wear out fast. Three years ago I switched to the new RXS Carbons and they are great. Light, large platform, low foot to axle distance, and long lasting cleats.
    they call the cleat the Cafe Cleat wears just fine w/ the outriggers.
    Plus, you have rotation, and lateral movement in them as well.
    my 2cents

  20. #20
    Lost in translation
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    New pairs of DA 7800 and 7810 can be had all day long on eBay for $130 and $180, respectively. Probably less if you go thru the bidding process. And even less for used.

    I use fixed mode cleats. Still no play between cleat and pedal after 10,000 miles. Float cleats do not last as long and will eventually wear out each pedal's contact points, faster if ridden in dirty conditions. So inspect closely if buying a used set. I recommend springing for a new set, but they come with the float cleats, I think.

  21. #21
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    Thanks Brentthetank,

    Orthobiker

  22. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by orthobiker
    Anyone have experience with Time RXS? How do they compare with Look and Shemano.
    I have a brand new set of Time RXS Edge (the mid-grade RXS in their 2009 line up). I bought them because I was intrigued because they're a definite different design than Shimano/Look (which I consider roughly equivalent in design and functioning).

    I have only ridden on my trainer, but I have done a direct comparison with a couple year old pair of Dura Ace 7800s. For a while I had a Dura Ace on one side, the Time on the other.

    The time cleats are equally "walkable" as the SPD-SL cleats. The "bumpers" are very similar and they just feel about the same walking across a tile or wooden floor - no problems at all.

    The RXS cleats are heavier, but the RXS pedal is lighter. The total weight is very close to equal. Time cleat/pedals will be ounces lighter than any other shimano pedal though and those Shimano pedals would cost quite a bit more, unless you find new old stock somewhere.

    The time cleat connection is very different than the Shimano (and Look). There is a metal portion of the cleat at the connection point vs. total nylon/plastic for the Shimano. My guess (and what I've read) is that the time cleat lasts forever, but since the Shimano cleats are quite a bit cheaper, that may be a wash. I dont' think cleat pricing would ever be a factor for me though. I was attracted to the connection method though. It just seems to make more sense to me, but both work extremely well, no big deal.

    The float feel is somewhat different, but I dont' believe it's a major factor. If anything, I believe the RXS cleats have more freedom - lateral as well as rotational, but this can be "tightened" down or made pretty much resistence free.

    I believe clip in might be a little easier with Shimano, but I'm comparing a set of well-broken in Dura Ace to brand spankin' new Times. I've read that the times become easier after a short break in period. It's not "difficult" at all, just not as easy. It clips a little differently because of where the metal cleat sits - a little forward of the actual clip-in point of a Shimano (and look) cleat.

    Platform size seems equivalent. Maybe the RXS is a little larger? But this is the 7800 Dura Ace, not the newest.

    Time has the Q factor adjustment which may be handy.

    Both are excellent. The times are quite a bit cheaper for the weight. (~75US compared to close to $200US). The Dura Ace are metal bodied compared to synthetic (plastic? Nylon?) w/ Time (and Look). I don't know if that will matter to me, I'm not hard on equipment nor am I a 10K per year rider (more like 2K since we have a short season here) and frankly I really don't care if my gear lasts forever or just a long time.

  23. #23
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    Same, it's not that I wouldn't use other stuff but I usually stick with Shimanos.

    Quote Originally Posted by Poppadaddio
    I had several pairs of Looks, then took a side trip to Crank Quattros, then went to Shimanos on the advice of my bike fitter. Good choice, they don't squeak!
    Not saying I wouldn't use Looks, it's just that with the Shimanos I need look no further.

  24. #24
    eRacer
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    Speedplay X2's.
    Can't walk in them.
    IMO, the very BEST Road Pedal/Cleat System.
    Double entry, durable, maintenance free, secure.
    John Lapoint / San Diego
    God is Great, Beer is Good, and People are Crazy!

  25. #25
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    Thanks, Camilo for a very thorough post. I've seen the Time cleats on line and they certainly look like Shimanos and Looks.
    Be sure to look at Shimano Ultegra pedals. They appear to be identical to the Dura-Ace. I have ULtegra on two bikes because, in my opinion, the difference between Dura-Ace and Ultegra is usually
    1. Dura-Ace has a brighter finish
    2. Dura-Ace may have lighter materials (titanium vs. aluminum)
    3. Dura-Ace may actually be better
    4. Dura-Ace costs a lot more.
    It was GREEN, officer!

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