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PostPosted: Wed May 11, 2011 11:28 pm 
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Posts: 55
I was looking for pedals with increased float. I noticed some weight weenies use bebops.

I decided to try them out:

I ordered the chromoly axle versions from niagaracycles for about $96 shipped. They came with all the necessary accessories - the 3bolt adaptors, extra screws, caps, and hardware.
Image

I actually ended up ordering extra 3bolt adaptors because I was confused and thought that the adaptors didn't come with the kit.

The pedals themselves are tiny.
Image
Image


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Posted: Wed May 11, 2011 11:28 pm 


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PostPosted: Wed May 11, 2011 11:30 pm 
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The bebop pedals were lighter than advertised: 207g (210g MFG claimed)
Image

Old Look Keo Plus Pedals (actually very light):
Image

A great thing is that there are affordable eBay Ti spindles for the bebops. Of course I bought them before the bebops even arrived;) ($65 w/ shipping eBay)

Chromoly Spindles:
Image

Ti Spindles:
Image

Final weight:
Image

I'm happy that they are even lighter than the official Bebops with Ti Spindles which retail for $335. Luckily total for mine are a little over $150. Total weight savings 109g from previous pedals.

The stack height is described as very low, but with 3bolt cleat adaptors they are around the same height as my previous Look Keo cleats.
Image
Image

The pedal system has 20º of float which I understand is a lot. I previously was using Look Keo's and started to get right knee pain. My bike fit was OK'ed by my LBS and after numerous adjustments with the looks I decided to try out pedals with more float.

I've done 4 rides so far, and two on rollers.

Here's my description of the feeling of bebops. I can concur with others descriptions that it really does have a lot of float that "feels like pedaling on ice".

Clipping in is a tiny click and you're REALLY connected to the pedal. Its kind of scary when you're coming from Look pedals because with Looks when you start to pivot your foot there is a feeling of tension like a joint being forced out of a socket. But with Bebops there is only icy float and complete connection until you pivot 15+º outward or 5+º inward then there is a tiny bit of tension and a small audible click.

There is a method where you lift your heel while pivoting to smoothly get the pedal out.

So far so good is my experience with the Bebops. I love the dual sided entry - no looking down to clip in, and even if you're in a hurry (like starting to pedal when a traffic light turns green) you can pedal directly even when not fully clipped. I remember how looks are very slippery on the underside especially when in contact with a flat carbon road bike shoe sole.

The large amount of float really did help - there was no knee pain from the first ride in. I did end up getting slight foot and hip cramps on my first longer 20mile ride because there probably was more intrinsic muscles being utilized with new increased float.

So I did a couple 45min sessions on rollers the next days to acclimatize my body to the new increased float, and its affect on my cadence/form. Fortunately there were no more cramps. But rollers with the bebops was very scary at first (icy feeling pedaling coupled with icy feeling on wheels with the rollers).

So far:

Pros:
  • impressive amount of float 20º
  • super smooth "icy" float
  • easy installation with both options: 8mm allen wrench socket or with a normal pedal crank wrench
  • price was good
  • weight was good even for lowest end heaviest model
  • very easily/cheaply upgraded to titanium axle with aftermarket parts
  • metal pedal and cleat seem very durable and easy to walk on
  • all cleat adaptors, hardware, ect are included with the basic kit.
  • dual sided entry for easy urban riding

Cons:
  • "icy" excessive float may not be positive for some
  • needs an adapter for normal (which is probably 85%) 3 bolt road shoes.
  • metal cleat may damage wood/delicate flooring
  • cleat connects to pedal VERY SECURELY. when you're in YOU'RE IN.
  • small pedal platform requires rigid shoes for optimal power transfer
  • probably hard to ride with regular shoes on when you need to make a quick ride to the gorcery store/post office/ect
  • not widely carred by LBSs so if you need an extra cleat/parts you have to order online
  • cleats are relatively expensive (around $50) although made of metal and are reported as very durable.


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PostPosted: Wed May 11, 2011 11:35 pm 
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I did eventually switch over the cleats directly to my Bont-A-one shoes. No more adapter needed after drilling in the standard SPD cleat hole pattern.
Image
Image

now the stack height is extremely low. I have adjusted my bike saddle height and stem spacer height accordingly. after about 3 weeks on these pedals I really like them. They are great for city riding where you must stop and go a lot. my knee pain has disappeared.

I was informed by other users of bebops that there could be a problem with cleat wear from constantly clipping in/out. I have already purchased extra cleats just in case.


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PostPosted: Thu May 12, 2011 12:53 am 
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Location: Los Angeles / Glendale, California
Excellent review!

I used Bebops for a few years up until ~2006, when I made a switch over to Time RXS Ulteam.
I've still got a pair of the original ultra-light steel that I plan on using again when I build up a 'dream commuter' type thing.

From experience, those are the only cleats (non-SPD) that are truly 'indestructible' and you can indeed walk for miles in them if you have to.
When things were less smooth I sprayed a little cooking oil on the cleats, wiped off the excess, and they worked perfectly without any stiffness for months on end.
They are far, far superior to Speedplays so long as float is desired, there is no way to turn the float off. But on the plus side: you can walk through mud and still click in (the mud will be pushed through the pedal), and you don't need a cover to protect the cleats.

Great product, glad to see that a new manufacturer picked up the design. :thumbup:

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PostPosted: Thu May 12, 2011 12:57 am 
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Joined: Tue Nov 02, 2010 12:13 am
Posts: 325
Thanks for the informative review!
I like to use SPD shoes on my road bike, and I think these would save me a tidy 210grams.

I will tell Niagara you sent me :thumbup:


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PostPosted: Thu May 12, 2011 1:16 am 
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Posts: 347
I assume but will ask anyway - two bolt cleats, good to go w/ MTB shoes?

Also, on road shoes, is there any reason you couldn't use the pontoons that you can bolt on w/ 2 bolt cleats?

Would their three hole adapter work with normal SPD cleats and three hole road shoes? It looks quite a bit thinner than the ones Shimano sells.

I'm kind of looking for a pedal like this to use w/ both road and MTB shoes so I can use either pair for either the dedicated road bike or the roadbike/commuter. Just so I don't have to ever get burned by having grabbed the wrong shoes some day.


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PostPosted: Thu May 12, 2011 2:54 am 
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Camilo wrote:
I assume but will ask anyway - two bolt cleats, good to go w/ MTB shoes?


yes it will work great with regular MTB shoes. the only thing is the super low stack height. you may have to cut a groove into the soles on the spindle side.

Camilo wrote:
IAlso, on road shoes, is there any reason you couldn't use the pontoons that you can bolt on w/ 2 bolt cleats?


I'm not totally clear on what your asking here. But if your road shoes already have SPD 2 bolt holes then you can attach the cleat directly without an adaptor.

Camilo wrote:
Would their three hole adapter work with normal SPD cleats and three hole road shoes? It looks quite a bit thinner than the ones Shimano sells.


I don't know. But then again the normal kit already comes with a proper bebop to 3 hole road adaptor. I've only used bebops with the adaptors because those are the only pedals/cleat I've used other than my looks. I don't know if the bebop adaptor is compatible with SPD 2 or 3 bolt cleats.


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PostPosted: Tue May 17, 2011 3:49 pm 
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I've actually gotten a couple PMs about how to swap the spindles.

first I got the Ti spindles from eBay (the same guys who sell the time/look/speedplay kits).

swapping out the bebop spindles are very easy:
Image

just take out the yellow rubber seal on the outside that has VP on it. i used a dull knife to pop them off. under the seal there is a phillips head screw under. Unscrew - Both the right and left pedals unscrew with the standard counterclockwise turn.

From there you just pull out the spindle. Then replace. The Ti spindles I bought are not labeled Right or Left so you have to use the thread patterns to determine which is which.

Since the spindles aren't that expensive (around $65 shipped USA) I decided to buy the cheapest Bebop Chromoly model - which are also anodized black ($96 shipped). The black pedals are nice, but the more expensive stainless steel and Ti versions are very very slick too.
Image

compare:
Image



Over all weight savings again is great, even a little lighter than the official Ti Bebops
Image
Image


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PostPosted: Tue May 17, 2011 4:28 pm 
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Location: SC, USA
what is the weight of the cleat? and shim?

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PostPosted: Tue May 17, 2011 4:50 pm 
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Here are the weights for the cleats:
Image

And 3 bolt adaptors:
Image


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PostPosted: Tue May 17, 2011 4:54 pm 
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Joined: Mon Jan 24, 2011 8:09 pm
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prendrefeu wrote:
Excellent review!
They are far, far superior to Speedplays so long as float is desired, there is no way to turn the float off. But on the plus side: you can walk through mud and still click in (the mud will be pushed through the pedal), and you don't need a cover to protect the cleats.




If they added an ability to adjust the float, then I would agree they would be equivalent, or better than speedplay. But as you said, since you can't adjust it, that is a problem for me personally. I like a few degrees of float, and that can be dialed in on the speedplay. These require you to just deal with the float and whatever happens.


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PostPosted: Tue May 17, 2011 5:01 pm 
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Location: Los Angeles / Glendale, California
I agree Zigmeister, that is definitely a downside, which is why I no longer use them. For commuting, however, they would work well, or bmx/freestyle riding, which is the market that VP-One has been targeting with the lower-end versions of these pedals.

The float is there, yes, but unless you've already got stability problems like a cartoon character's knees you won't be skating around as much as you think. People are imagining that the entire ride your feet are twisting around in all sorts of angles and that couldn't be further from the truth. :roll:

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PostPosted: Tue May 17, 2011 5:10 pm 
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I like to think of it like free weights compared to using machines for weightlifting exercises.

There's the school of thought that its better to rely on your own muscles and muscle memory to produce the best form - like in the case of using free weights/dumbells.

But there's the other logic that once you've locked into the machine you can really put extra power into it - like squat machines.

as i stated in my review the 20º of icy float is both a PRO and CON.

when doing normal cadence of 90-100 its a great tool to keep form. but when hammering it can be advantageous to be locked in with minimal float. my knees love the float, and i like the challenge of having to use my own muscles to keep form when hammering.


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PostPosted: Tue May 17, 2011 6:38 pm 
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Location: SC, USA
Float aside, the weight of these pedals w/ cleats is on par with the lightest! The Speedplay nano and Egg 11s.

Of these three pedals, so far, the nano is the only ones that have fixed cleats. I'm not including the Aerolites.

Of these three pedals, these Ti mod-ed bebops are the cheapest. $160. The Nanos are $650 and the Egg 11s are $350. So that gives the nod to these pedals for best $/g ratio as well.

Too bad there is no fixed cleat for the bebops. :-(

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Posted: Tue May 17, 2011 6:38 pm 


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PostPosted: Tue May 17, 2011 7:10 pm 
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Excellent write-up. :thumbup:

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