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 Post subject: Re: DELETED
PostPosted: Wed Jan 19, 2011 11:28 am 
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Joined: Sun Dec 17, 2006 12:02 pm
Posts: 944
Location: EU
Had speedplays for about one year. Been there, done that. Now I see how horrible they've been in their maintenance. Also glad I don't use any product from a company with such attitude any longer.

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 Post subject: Re: DELETED
PostPosted: Wed Jan 19, 2011 12:35 pm 
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Joined: Sat Apr 22, 2006 12:38 am
Posts: 1725
Location: Dutchess County, NY
lancejohnson wrote:
Mr. Gib, thanks for taking this one on. I am a SPD-SL user, and personally dislike Speedplay pedals quite intently on their design merits. I must say though, that a company harassing someone who posts on a forum about how to service their pedals being intimidated by corporate counsel drops them down a notch in my book even further. Are there safety concerns? Possibly, but the more appropriate thing to do - as Gib posted - would be to join the conversation and point out the concerns and address the problems.



I think speedplay's main issue (other than the info about their bearings) was the OP was selling the bearings on ebay. That's what they were trying to shut down. That said, I also think it's a load of crap and I'm glad I gave up on speedplay pedals years ago.

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 Post subject: Re: DELETED
Posted: Wed Jan 19, 2011 12:35 pm 


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 Post subject: Re: DELETED
PostPosted: Wed Jan 19, 2011 6:19 pm 
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Joined: Fri Mar 18, 2005 4:12 pm
Posts: 2312
Location: eh?
Notwithstanding the Ebay sales situation, it remains an extraordinarily obnoxious move by Speedplay. Is there anything wrong (legally or otherwise) with selling bearings/parts on Ebay? Of course not. Speedplays reaction is typical of inexperienced and foolish executives with poor understanding of the essence of good marketing and brand management. The modern consumer reacts very poorly to the slightest hint of BS. Watch as Speedplay's fortunes decline over the next couple of years.

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 Post subject: Re: DELETED
PostPosted: Thu Jan 20, 2011 1:00 am 
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Joined: Sun Dec 28, 2008 10:15 pm
Posts: 1248
Location: Hungary
Huh??

Just let me know what to copy in, I will write anything anywhere for a good cause.

Of course their next step would be be to threaten the forum owner, and I'm afraid i don't expect much good in that case either... :|


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 Post subject: Re: DELETED
PostPosted: Thu Jan 20, 2011 2:22 am 
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Joined: Fri Mar 18, 2005 4:12 pm
Posts: 2312
Location: eh?
Check page two, all the info is there.

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swinter wrote:
Mr.Gib got it right


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 Post subject: Re: DELETED
PostPosted: Thu Jan 20, 2011 2:55 am 
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Tubbie Guru

Joined: Tue May 03, 2005 2:20 am
Posts: 5793
Location: Belgium
Hi,

Mr.Gib wrote:
Notwithstanding the Ebay sales situation, it remains an extraordinarily obnoxious move by Speedplay. Is there anything wrong (legally or otherwise) with selling bearings/parts on Ebay? Of course not. Speedplays reaction is typical of inexperienced and foolish executives with poor understanding of the essence of good marketing and brand management. The modern consumer reacts very poorly to the slightest hint of BS. Watch as Speedplay's fortunes decline over the next couple of years.


No idea what kind of people are running the management at Speedplay but it sure is a suicidal (kind of "hubris", old greek for overly courageous), curious position they've taken.
One that does not show any insight on how markets work and more over one that seems to forget how humans respond to such threats.

Naturally there are limits and one shouldn't encourage people to steal other people intellectual property but clearly this is not the case.

People should not be frightened by these kind of menaces and I'd certainly hope no company (or nation for that matter) would go as law-crazy as what you'd see in the U.S. (not wanting the start a debate here) as common sense should prevail. Allways.

Ciao, ;)

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 Post subject: Re: DELETED
PostPosted: Thu Jan 20, 2011 7:53 am 
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Joined: Sun Apr 13, 2008 4:27 pm
Posts: 151
Location: Seattle
To all of those who posted replies: Thanks for all of your support.

I am compelled to take the time to tell you the whole story.

In 1995 I began using Speedplay X2 pedals. Shortly thereafter I began racing. After one season my pedals felt notchy and needed a rebuild. I contacted Speedplay about a rebuild and was shocked at the high price. At that point I decided to take the pedals apart and try to rebuild them myself. What did I have to lose? They were no longer useable in their current condition and a Speedplay rebuild was not a good economical choice.

After taking the pedals apart I found that they were a beautifully simple design. Ingenious, in their simplicity. After sizing all of the bearings, screws, o-rings and retaining ring it took about two weeks to locate and order all of the parts. At full retail price the cost for bearings, o-rings and retaining rings was around $45. The rebuild went smoothly. I used the rebuilt pedals for a full three seasons greasing them every 1-2000 miles before rebuilding them again.

During that time many of my racing teammates and riding buddies were using Speedplay pedals and had the same problem I initially had. I offered to rebuild the pedals free of charge they just had to cover the cost of parts.

As time went on I found myself rebuilding pedals for friends of friends of friends. I then began ordering bearings in larger quantities lowering the hardware cost to around $20.

I got so good at rebuilding pedals that I can now do a full rebuild on a pair of pedals in around 15 minutes if the spindle screws didn't strip out. When Speedplay switched their hex head screws to torx head the problem became very prominent. With the hex head screws only about one in ten were a problem. With torx head screws it was one in two. Some came off very easily. Others would not budge without extreme heating.

Side note: Have you noticed that Speedplay has been using red loctite on their bowtie screws for models 2009 and newer? I guess they are trying to keep people from replacing bowties as red loctite is for extreme/permanent applications and the glue does not let go until the temperature reaches 350+ degrees farenheit. There is no need for anything more than blue loctite on the bowtie screws as they are not subject to extreme pressure. You can probably get away with out using loctite at all for the bowtie screws. This will not stop anyone who really wants to replace their bowties. It just makes it difficult causing screw heads to strip out.

I am not saying I rebuilt hundreds of pedals a month. More like 2-3 a month, but over the years the numbers add up. Everyone who has had pedals rebuilt by me continue to come back to me since my rebuilds have met or exceeded the performance and longevity of their original Speedplay builds.

This past year I began researching how big the demand was for quality bearing rebuild kits for do-it-yourselfers. I found hundreds of posts from people trying to find the right bearings, screws and instructions. Many of the posts, I found, posted either the wrong bearing size or very bad incomplete instructions. I even found post where someone broke the retaining ring for the cartridge bearings and was instructed that it would probably be OK to put the pedals back together and use them without the retaining ring. Not to be confused with the needle bearing
thin wire retaining ring which really serves no purpose in my opinion and was only added to later models. The cartridge bearing retaining ring is structurally necessary and is the only thing keeping the pedal body from sliding into the spindle damaging the spindle and possibly causing catastrophic failure.

I was compelled at that time to begin selling bearing kits on eBay with sound and proven instructions and at a good price point. To this day I have not made a penny selling rebuild kits. I am just happy to help fellow riders keep using Speedplay pedals instead of switching brands due to the high cost of OEM parts and the complete lack of good rebuild instructions.

My first auctions on eBay had the word Speedplay in the title. The auction description clearly stated that the parts were aftermarket. eBay notified me that the owner of the copyright asked for the auctions to be removed and subsequently cancelled the listings. eBay's email instructed me to put the words 'fits Speedplay' in the title so that consumers did not think that the bearings are OEM.

I relisted the kits with the word 'fits' before Speedplay. One week later I received an email from eBay stating that Speedplay asked for these auctions to be removed. eBay went on to state that the auction DID NOT violate any copyright laws. Only that the Verified Rights Owner asked that the items be removed. Reading more into eBay's VeRO rules found that their stand is that if the original copyright owner asks for an item to be removed, they will comply. Speedplay even had my listing for a New-In-Box X1 cancelled. No modifications to them at all.

I then relisted the bearings omitting the name 'Speedplay' completely. I only referenced them as lollipop shaped pedals. I then posted rebuild instructions on Weight Weenies. Speedplay continued to try to have my eBay listing removed, but had no grounds and so the listing went on undisturbed. I guess I was really eating into Speedplay's profits. On average I was selling (at my cost/no profit) 3 bearing sets a week!!! Retirement in Costa Rica, here I come!!!!

Finally, last week I received a letter from Speedplay's lawers with a Cease-And-Desist order naming the Weight Weenies post with instructions as well as my auctions. If I did not immediately delete the posts and end the auctions they would press charges against me. Their main points were that if someone used my instructions and rebuilt the pedals and became injured I would be held liable. Furthermore, I have not had the bearings I sell bench tested to meet Speedplay requirements.

Speedplay knows full well that any good industrial grade bearing is overkill when it comes to pedals. Pedals are low rpm and not under extreme torque or stress and so this is a non-issue. All the bearings I use are rated at 85000 rpm (needle bearings rated at 23300 rpm) with a total dynamic load capacity of well over 400 lb per pedal.

Speedplay also stated that with my instructions someone could now manufacture Speedplay pedals and in so doing infringe on their copyrights. Huh??? If someone wanted to manufacture Speedplay pedals they would take a set of pedals apart and copy them. There is no need for my instructions. That is like saying that instructions on how to change a car tire can directly result in someone manufacturing car tires. How the hell can I, a regular do-it-yourselfer go from maintaining and changing out bearings to being able to mass produce Speedplay copies? Does anyone here have a secret Chinese factory they would like to give me access to?? Just kidding here.

I know that legally Speedplay has no grounds to come after me, but I know that the US legal system is such that it could make life very tough for me. If I am subpoena'd in court, I would have to travel to San Diego and appear. Even with no ground they could try to press all kind of charges and I would need to get a lawyer. Afterall they have lawyers on their payroll. How much will that cost me?

I have finally decided to throw in the towel and give up. After using Speedplay pedals for my road bikes exclusively for 15 years I am now looking for something else. I will be selling 7 sets of X1 pedals in the near future.

Hey Speedplay: I bought all 7 sets brand new at my LBS. This is a prefect example of the ability to rebuild your pedals actually increasing sales. Had I not been able to inexpensively rebuild my Speedplay pedals I would never have bought them for all of my bikes. I would have switched brands 14 years ago. How many hundreds of sets of pedals did they sell as a direct result of my extremely positive comments and recommendations over the years.

Can't sell my X1's on eBay because Speedplay will use the VeRO rule and have it cancelled since I know that they are watching me. So I will list them in the WW for sale section soon. I will probably not get as much as I want because of this post, but I don't care.

I used to be a huge fan and proponent of Speedplay pedals recommending them to all of my racing buddies. After experiencing first hand Speedplay's tactics and 'mob mentality' I am very sad, but at the same time very relieved to say: good bye Speedplay, and good riddance.

Now the search begins for a suitable replacement........


Last edited by frikinspit on Thu Jan 20, 2011 8:32 am, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Re: DELETED
PostPosted: Thu Jan 20, 2011 7:59 am 
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Joined: Sun Apr 13, 2008 4:27 pm
Posts: 151
Location: Seattle
Oh, and I almost forgot to thank my fellow WW members who reposted my original instructions.


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 Post subject: Re: DELETED
PostPosted: Thu Jan 20, 2011 8:31 am 
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Joined: Mon May 24, 2010 4:18 am
Posts: 370
Location: Australia
Well done on fighting the good fight. I too was thinking about trying Speedplays but in light of their threat of legal action against you, will never, ever, go near them (as a matter of principle)

Perhaps Keywin CRM Ti's may be worth a try? I've had mine for ~15,000km - still buttery smooth. No rider weight limit (i'm >130kgs and have had no probs!). 192g/pair. Have tried Looks, Time and VPs in the past and have found Keywins to be my fave option.

Usual disclaimer: no connections/vested interest with them.

Cheers
I


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 Post subject: Re: DELETED
PostPosted: Thu Jan 20, 2011 9:03 am 
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Joined: Mon Oct 25, 2010 5:51 pm
Posts: 133
Location: UK
See below taken directly from the speedplay site

"Rebuildable
Bicycle pedals are subject to impact damage, abuse and general wear and tear on a daily basis. Pedals are exposed to rain, sweat and dirt, and are subject to hitting curbs, bouncing off rocks, clipping corners, sliding against walls, and getting kicked. Eventually, all pedals need servicing or rebuilding. While some manufacturers prescribe to a "bust it and chuck it" philosophy with the hope that consumers will do so as well, others make parts for rebuilding available. It does not make sense to trash a whole pedal system when the replacement of a single component could make it serviceable again. It is important, therefore, to make sure the company that manufactures the product you choose offers a full line of replacement parts.
Speedplay pedals can be rebuilt, and are easily serviceable with common tools."

You can make up your own jokes from here...

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 Post subject: Re: DELETED
PostPosted: Thu Jan 20, 2011 9:21 am 
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Joined: Tue Sep 19, 2006 5:59 pm
Posts: 100
Lol, thats hillarious. What a nutsacks over there.


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 Post subject: Re: DELETED
PostPosted: Thu Jan 20, 2011 11:13 pm 
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Joined: Mon Oct 10, 2005 1:19 am
Posts: 230
Location: Central PA
You can also chalk me up as another former owner of Speedplays. I have a pair on my winter/beater bike, but after reading this thread I'm going to remove them tonight. I will never EVER buy another pair of their pedals.

-efwd


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 Post subject: Re: DELETED
PostPosted: Fri Jan 21, 2011 12:41 am 
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Joined: Thu Jan 26, 2006 6:01 pm
Posts: 1538
I've got 4 sets of Speedplay zeros currently and needed to get a couple new pair (some are 5 years old!). After seeing what speedplay did with this post and the ebay deal I'm selling the ones I've got a getting something else. Screw them.


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 Post subject: Re: DELETED
PostPosted: Fri Jan 21, 2011 1:27 am 
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Joined: Fri Mar 18, 2005 4:12 pm
Posts: 2312
Location: eh?
Frikinspit, you are a great asset to the cycling community and should have zero regret about giving up. Definitely the right move in your situation.

By the way AFAIK there would be no pressing of charges. It would be a civil suit in which Speedplay would claim that your actions have resulted in damage to their company. Really the only way for that to happen is if someone was injured using a pedal that you rebuilt improperly and successfully sued Speedplay. Then Speedplay might go after you in an attempt to recover losses. If you demonstrate that your rebuild technique was the equal of Speedplays, they would get laughed out of court. Many judges despise corporations that pick on individuals.

If someone was injured using your instructions the determination of liability would be partial at best and again would only be against you if it was demonstrated that you were negligent in supplying the materials or instructions somehow and that said negligence caused or contributed to the injury.

So as you are well aware you would probably win in court - but even getting a lawyer to bring a motion to throw out the case would cost you a few thousand dollars.

I would ask one favour of you - could you rename this thread to properly reflect the content. Perhaps something along the lines of: Speedplay Threatens Customers. You should be safe with that statement - just reporting the news.

By the way Speedplay, the correct course of action (because you are obviously too stupid to figure it out) is to offer frikinspit a job in your tech/R&D department.

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 Post subject: Re: DELETED
Posted: Fri Jan 21, 2011 1:27 am 


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 Post subject: Re: DELETED
PostPosted: Fri Jan 21, 2011 2:47 am 
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Joined: Sun Dec 28, 2008 10:15 pm
Posts: 1248
Location: Hungary
Quite a story...

Thing is speedplay (lowercase from now on) probably doesn't want to go to court at all...
They threaten... That's all it takes... It seems it worked quite well in your case. :|


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