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Shimano R550 SPD-SL Road Pedals


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Product Details

Shimano PD-R550 SPD-SL Road Pedals

As is the enlightened Shimano way, PD-R550 pedals share the same fundamental features that make their Dura-Ace SPD-SL pedals the choice of many elite riders.

  • The PD-R550 SPD-SL's wide, lightweight nylon platform makes for a large shoe contact area to maximise power transfer, foot stability and support.
  • The metal plate on the shoe contact zone prevents the nylon resin body wearing prematurely.
  • The PD-R550's open design and the wider cleat and cleat engagement zone (compared with standard SPD pedals) facilitates confidence-inspiring foot engagement and release.
  • The pedal axle spins on a low-maintenance cartridge sealed bearings.
  • Manufacturer's published weight: 300 grams per pair.

Road Bike Clipless Pedals

In 1984, the French company LOOK launched a pedal that introduced ski-binding technology to cycling pedals and shoes. In 1985 French rider Bernard Hinault won the Tour de France pedalling LOOK. Every Tour since has been won on a bike with LOOK or similar clipless pedals, such as Shimano SPD-SL or Speedplays. Today, the vast majority of keen amateur and more and more commuter and leisure cyclists have been won over by the benefits of riding 'clipless pedals'.

LOOK/SPD-SL-style pedals are supplied with a pair of cleats, which are permanently bolted to the soles of you road cycling shoes. Such is the dominance of this system, over 99% of road cycling shoe soles are drilled to take a LOOK-style cleat's 3 fixing bolts. Once the shoes are cleated, it's simply a matter of stepping onto the LOOK/SPD-SL pedals and your foot is secured in the most efficient position for most riders - with the ball of the foot over the pedal axle. Thus engaged, you should never again suffer the potentially dangerous experience of your foot slipping off the pedal.

When you do have to disengage, say when you come to a halt, simply swivel the heel outwards and the foot is released. With practice, it's much easier to engage or release the foot from a LOOK/SPD-SL pedal than it is from a toeclip and strap - the traditional foot binding system. This release is so immediate, clipless systems such as LOOK/SPD-SL are sometimes referred to as 'automatic pedals'.

Be aware that while a LOOK/SPD-SL compatible shoe will work with any 3-bolt pedal system, cleats are not always interchangeable between different systems. You can't fit a Look cleat to a Shimano SPD-SL pedal or vice versa. That's why the cleats come supplied with the pedals or as spares, but never with the shoes.