Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Custom Midsole Cleats

Jim Vance, a pro triathlete who uses midsole cleats, just got his new D2 custom-made shoes. I thought you might like to see what they look like. This is a Speedplay pedal system with a 4-bolt cleat. If you have midsole cleats please send me a picture like this one. I'll post some of them here. Here is my email contact.

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At December 23, 2009 12:54 PM , Blogger linda said...

is there an advantage to the midsole cleat when time trialing?

At December 23, 2009 1:45 PM , Blogger Joe Friel said...

Linda--Read this

At December 26, 2009 7:59 PM , Blogger Eric Johnson said...

have any of your athletes had a negative experience with the midsole cleat, joe?

At December 27, 2009 6:57 AM , Blogger Joe Friel said...

Hi Eric--yes. I changed one of my triathletes to midsole at midseason a few years ago. She experienced quad cramps as she was already doing high-intensity intervals. This just illustrates how much more work is done by the quads with a midsole cleat since the calf is no longer a limiter for force application to the pedal. We changed her back to traditional position for the remainder of the season. That experience scared her away from trying it again.

At January 2, 2010 1:10 PM , Blogger z4kc said...

It looks like the soles were drilled for 3 holes. Do you have any pictures without the cleats attached?

At January 2, 2010 2:27 PM , Blogger Joe Friel said...

z4kc--which shoes are you talking about? The ones in this post were drilled 4 hole. Or are you referring to my Shimano? The only 3 holes in those were the original under the ball of foot.

At January 2, 2010 9:10 PM , Blogger z4kc said...

It looks to me like the pair of D2's with Speedplay cleats have the 3 hole adapter plate under the sole?

At January 3, 2010 9:23 AM , Blogger Joe Friel said...

z4kc--Could be. I can't speak to that. Not my shoes.

At January 5, 2010 11:14 PM , Anonymous Götz Heine said...

z4kc - from what it looks its a three-hole configuration which attaches SPEEDPLAY's BasePlate.
As it requires a royalty for a professional to build and use a bicycle shoe sole where cleats can be mounted in the middle third of the sole this shoe's maybe the result of a private job like Joe's is.
Until some US-based manufacturer takes up the task to produce shoes on behalf of the patentee, this exception had been tolerated so far to promote the idea of bio-mxc²/midsole cleats throughout the U.S..

At January 8, 2010 9:42 PM , Blogger Joe Friel said...

Anon--No, I didn't say anything about that. You must have read Goetz Heine's comment here. I believe he said he has a patent on that position.

At March 17, 2010 7:17 AM , Blogger Me said...


I have the Speedplay adapter and have fallen in love with it....just wow. Nagging Achilles injury gone. I have the mounting plate all the way back AND the cleat in the most rearward of the two mounting pre-drilled holes.

However, I'm constantly wondering if I have gone far enough. I'm certainly not at the midfoot position, but have a spare set of older Shimano SH-T120's with a very flat-ish sole which might be perfect for an experiment. Since I have become dependent on using shims to fix my horrible forefoot varus where my knee would actually HIT the top tube.....I can't see how I can use MTB cleats.

Any ideas, suggestions on how I can drill for Speedplay cleats in a midfoot? Your idea on cleat positioning has prolonged my 28 year cycling career....thank you:)!

At April 26, 2010 11:11 PM , Anonymous Götz HEINE said...

if you plan to use SPEEDPLAY pedals and cleats for midfoot choose the manufacturer's FROG version with its two-bolt cleats and you will discover that its worth the change. First because when pedalling midfoot there is no such thing as lateral movement or need for extra-heel- or ankle-play. Also, with the patented biomac cycling shoe sole the central position of the cleat automatically inhibits in-efficient and sometimes even harmful wobbling of your feet.
Good alternatives to your PEDALS are provided by companies like
RITCHEY, CrankBros., LOOK MTB and MAVIC. Send your current shoes to us for modification if you feel that you first want to test this highly efficient pedaling style.
Cheers, Götz Heine


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