How to Add Toe Clips to Your Bicycle

You push on the pedals to make your bike move. Wouldn’t it be nice if, while you were pushing with one leg, you could be lifting with the other? Twice as far for half the work? Sign me in!

Toe clips attach to the front of the pedals, and on your bike. When you want to go up hills more easily, or give yourself a boost of speed without pedaling any faster, these are just the thing.

Unlike expensive racing shoes that lock into the pedal, these guys have a lightweight plastic toe, and a leather strap that keeps your shoe on the pedal.

They are amazingly inexpensive – the pair pictured cost around $15, and are easy to install.

You’ll need a 15mm open-ended wrench. That’s it.

Turn your bike upside down and let it rest on the handlebars and seat.

Right Pedal

We’ll start with the right side first – it’s the side with the chain on it.

Put the wrench onto the shaft of the existing pedal. You’ll find a pair of flat spots on the pedal that exactly match the wrench.

Hold the pedal shaft with one hand while you push the wrench hard towards the rear of the bike with the other. It might take a little force, but it will suddenly turn easily.

Take off the old pedal and put it somewhere where you’ll wonder why you’re holding on to it for years to come.

Examine the new pedals, and select the one marked with an “R”. Make sure you use that one.

Put it into the hole on the pedal shaft, and turn it toward the front of the bike until it’s tight.

Left Pedal

Now we’ll do the left pedal. This one’s different because…well, we’ll get to that.

Put the wrench onto the flats of the existing pedal, and, supporting the pedal shaft with one hand, again, push the wrench toward the back of the bike.

“What?!?” you cry, aghast, your hand over your mouth. “Tha… That’s backwards!”

Yes, yes it’s true. It’s reverse-threaded. If it was your standard lefty-loosey, righty-tighty thread, as you pedaled your bike around town, the pedal would eventually unthread and fall off. Some smart person somewhere suggested reversing the threads and, well, pedaling has never been the same!

Remove the existing pedal.

Put the remaining pedal into the hole on the pedal shaft. As before, put the wrench on the flat spots and push it toward the front of the bike until it’s tight.

Adjusting the Toe Clips

The easiest way to adjust the strap on the clips is to put a shoe onto the pedal. Tighten the strap only enough to hold the shoe on, but not so tight that you can’t slip the shoe out easily. Don’t grab tightly onto the shoe or your might fall off your bike.

Riding with Toe Clips.

Some people are intimidated by toe clips at first. Once you get the hang of them, you’ll find that they’re easy to use.

Get onto the bike the way you normally do. If you prefer a rolling mount, with your left foot on the pedal to start, put your foot into the toe clip before you mount.

Let the right clip dangle under the pedal until you get rolling. Once you’re under way and safe, kick the pedal around with your foot and slip it into the clip.

That’s it – you’re in!

Now try lifting with your left leg while you’re pushing with your right – zoom! That’s power!

You did it! Pedal on!

Please note: do not do this procedure if you are not certain that you can complete it safely, or if it doesn’t seem accurate. Skippity Whistles provides this information as advice, and cannot accept any liability for your usage of it.


©2022 All right reserved


Published by John D Reinhart

Author, technical writer, videographer, actor, and naval historian John D Reinhart is a very busy guy. You can find his novels as

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