SPD SL vs XPEDO cleats

Ok almost ready to pull the trigger on the Assioma DUO but the only concern I have are the cleats. I’ve only ever used Shimano, and am quite happy with them, but heard some concerns with the XPEDO cleats that come with the Assiomas as far as lacking adjustability to the same extent that Shimano has.

For those who have made the switch from SPD-SL to XPEDO/LOOK, we’re you able to set the cleats up with relative ease or did you have to make other adjustments to get things to line up correctly?

1 Like

I have not used assioma pedals or xpedo cleats. However, after using spd sl pedals for many, many years, I did move to look compatible (vector) pedals one year back. I have used only Exustar cleats with all my pedals since that and with them even the look pedals work fine. Even better than with the original look cleats, according to the cyclingtips article:

The Garmin vector pedals come with the Exustar cleats , but you can get them separately too. The British Planet X bikes has them 67% discounted now, so it is quite cheap to test ride them.

After using SPD-SL cleats for quite a while, I wanted to move to a pedal-based PM and moved to Assioma. I was reluctant to change to Xpedo cleats after all the great comments about the Shimano, but I’m actually liking the Assioma/Xpedo just as well or perhaps better.

In terms of cleat position I did have to play a bit. I looked to find the location on the cleat that fell directly over the spindle (my yellow Shimanos had a mark, for CL but I run my pedals about 15mm rear of center so marked the cleat itself). With the Shimano cleats on the shoes I outlined them with a gold sharpie (so I could see it on the black carbon) marked the CL of the cleat on both sides and drew a line connecting them. Removed the Shimano cleat, mounted the Xpedo to fit with equal margins relative to the Shimano outline and positioned the cleat rotation. Tightened it down and put the shoe/cleat into the pedal and eyeballed where the spindle fell. Marked that on the lateral edge of the cleat. Took the shoe off the pedal and centered the mark o n the CL drawn on the shoe.

After a few rides I tweaked the position a bit rotationally, but overall found myself in a good position. I am a princess and pea guy with my fit and am good with where I sit today.

FYI, the Q-factor of the Assioma is 54mm without washers, so you want to compare that the spindle length for your model of Shimanos and adjust laterally accounting for any washers used or not used with either brand.

1 Like

I don’t believe the Shimano SPD-SL Cleats have any more adjustability than the Assioma cleats? Where did you hear concerns about cleat adjustability?

The Assioma cleats are basically the same shape as Look Keo cleats, and they can be adjusted on the shoe in exactly the same way as the Shimano cleats… Fore, aft, left, right.

Now, as for migrating from one cleat system to a new one, that is another matter. I was using SPD-SL for the last few years before switching to Assioma 6 months ago.

The Assioma cleats do have a different footprint to the SPD-SL Cleats, so the transplant was not a straight forward exercise.

In spite of my best efforts to fit the Assioma cleats to ‘match’ the Shimano position, it just didn’t work out and after a couple of KM I knew something was amiss because I felt knee pain.

Rather than making matters worse and getting frustrated, I went back to my bike fitter, had him set them up correctly and it was happy days. I now have an accurate reference on 2 pairs of shoes for future cleat replacement.

1 Like

Sounds like we had similar experiences @mancunian. The fitter who set up my shoes is in another state, so I played with them myself. Will likely have him look at them next time I’m in the area, but for now I feel I’m good.

1 Like

I haven’t had any problems. To say I’ve “switched” would be wrong. I still have Shimano SPD-SL on one bike and Assioma DUO on another, with Look/Xpedo cleats. The Assioma took a while to “break in” … but a little oil/teflon in strategic places helps immensely.

Should be said that I had used Look pedals before, so it didn’t feel all that new. I haven’t really thought about there being a difference, not any more than a difference between Look and Shimano, where Shimano has a nice, fat contact surface. If it makes a difference? On paper, probably. Nothing I worry about. The Assioma pedals are so, so useful and, for me, reliable. I’ve done 1000 km (60+ hours) using them without needing to charge them. I’m fine with that.