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DH + Clipless pedals?

Do you ride clipless pedals for downhill?

No, clipless for anything but DH
No, too scared my feet will get stuck and I will crash with 40 lbs of metal attached to my feet.
Yes. clipless for everything.
Yes, clipless DH only.
Total votes: 39
June 3, 2008, 7:23 p.m.
Posts: 1828
Joined: Feb. 12, 2007

Hey everybody,

I was wondering if anyone here downhills with clipless (clipped in, whatever!) pedals. I have been wanting to try it, because I have heard that they are very useful. I know that there is a tremendous improvement on the XC (which I will be doing a fair bit of) but I also want to know if it will work for the downhill sesh's. I have been in need of new pedals, and was wondering if my next purchase should be a set of clippies. I was checking out Crank Bro's pedals, and the Mallet seemed like a nice wide platform, and was designed for downhill. It also seemed to be at an alright price. So if anyone has any experience, advice, feedback, options, other models, write ups, or anything about these types of pedals, I would appreciate anything.

thanks for helping a fellow noob to clipless pedals out.

p.s. I am too cheap/poor to be a weight weenie so weight isn't a big factor, unless it is REALLY heavy ;)


June 3, 2008, 7:27 p.m.
Posts: 20
Joined: Aug. 11, 2003

I was in the same boat as you and last year was my first year riding DH clipless. I run Shimano DX shoes and 624 pedals. Good starting point and I have no regrets at all. I do not think I could go back to flats. You will fall, everybody does.
Hope that helps

June 3, 2008, 7:32 p.m.
Posts: 0
Joined: Dec. 27, 2002

It takes practice to get comfortable with them, but once you are its advantageous over flat pedals for most types of riding. It will take you some time to be confidient with clipless. I ride everything with them, its only ever an issue when you crash or need to bail off a skinny, ive been riding them so long I've never been bit (knock on wood). The only way to know is to try it, go for it.

June 3, 2008, 7:43 p.m.
Posts: 2452
Joined: Jan. 8, 2004

I personally prefer clips. I've always used the crankbrothers Mallet pedals for DH and have been happy with the way they work.

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June 3, 2008, 7:51 p.m.
Posts: 0
Joined: Oct. 2, 2006

been riding flats since i started riding bikes so thats what im used too, but im looking to pick up clips because everyone tells me you get a huge advantage on handeling and pedaling so im gonna have to try em

June 3, 2008, 7:55 p.m.
Posts: 338
Joined: Aug. 18, 2007

I started using clips on my DH bike at age 11. It took me a few big bails to get used to them but now that im used to them I cant ride flats at all!

June 3, 2008, 8:08 p.m.
Posts: 1828
Joined: Feb. 12, 2007

thanks everybody, I was just wondering. If you buy.. say a crank brothers clip pedals, do you have to buy a special shoe for that specific pedal?, or do you buy different sizes of clips for your shoes, or… is it a one shoe fits most kinda deal?

June 3, 2008, 8:15 p.m.
Posts: 129
Joined: Sept. 4, 2003

You have to buy the cleat that corresponds to the pedal you are using. But that should come with the pedals. Also I have heard rumour that you need a spacer for the crank bros pedals to get enough clearance but don't take that as doctrin. Hope that helps.

:high: If bikes were crack,I'd be Lindsy Lohan.

June 3, 2008, 10:37 p.m.
Posts: 3801
Joined: April 13, 2003

a lot of the top DH riders are running flats (Sam Hill for example) so I don't think there's an advantage…. I find you have more control of the bike with flats.


June 3, 2008, 10:45 p.m.
Posts: 133
Joined: Nov. 19, 2002

been running clipless for a long time, love'em…..crank brothers I'd stay far far away from…..I got a pair for free, they were brand new….inconsistant releases, at very inopportune times….hard to clip back in in awkward situations….the bearings blow chunks…..and the final straw was when I was sprinting down a section of trail and the pedal body ripped off the axle almost causing me to go head first into a bigass tree…..I will never use another CB product, it's just eye candy……get a shimano pedal, adjustable tension, from super loose, to super tight, and a tracter-beam like entry…..they take a beating too….

June 4, 2008, 12:57 a.m.
Posts: 2835
Joined: Nov. 22, 2002

a lot of the top DH riders are running flats (Sam Hill for example) so I don't think there's an advantage…. I find you have more control of the bike with flats.

but if i'm correct there wasn't a world cup DH champion that rode flats untill sam hill took it. Clips are awesome for racing (planning on picking up a set of mallets this year to try out) but if you want to ride well (aka win races), your approach to the course needs to change. Just watch some of the lines sam hill takes and the style he has. It suits him.


June 4, 2008, 1:36 a.m.
Posts: 4329
Joined: Oct. 24, 2005

I use flats for general playing around: beershuttles/jumping, and Crank Bros clippy goodness for XC (eggbeater 3ti) and racing DH (mallets). I like the Crank Bros system, after running with most others.
If you ever do have a problem with their gear, CB'll take care of you with customer service second to no other business out there.

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June 4, 2008, 1:47 a.m.
Posts: 4627
Joined: July 23, 2004

I got a set of clips (mallet's - thanks again DrewM)…and I'm switching back and forth between them and flats. I dont think I'm quite secure in my skills with them to run races clipped in…but I definitely like the damn things.

…all except for the panic falling over in the backyard when I forgot what pedals I had on my bike…my daughter at least got a good laugh out of it

Loud Hubs Save Lives

June 4, 2008, 6:18 a.m.
Posts: 20
Joined: Aug. 11, 2003

a lot of the top DH riders are running flats (Sam Hill for example) so I don't think there's an advantage…. I find you have more control of the bike with flats.

I think a lot of top DH racers will switch between flats and clipless, depending on the courses and the conditions. A few run flats exclusively and are faced with the usual problems of feet slipping off pedals in rough patches.

You will never know how much of a difference in control you have unless you try them both. Everyone is a little different when it comes to handling their bike.

June 4, 2008, 6:35 a.m.
Posts: 409
Joined: May 29, 2008

Flats and 5.10's seems to be the winning combination in my eyes. Predictable and reliable.

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