Since getting the Sidi Dragon biking shoes, I’ve been using them almost everyday, not for actual mountain biking, mind you, but for Spinning, or rather Studio Cycling (that’s what my gym calls the class). You know, indoor, group exercise class on a stationary bike……Um, yea… I know that these professional-grade shoes are way over the top for indoor bike class, but heck, they look cool!
Anyways, during this time, to clip in to the pedals at the gym, I attached to the soles, a pair of Shimano SPD SH-51 cleats that I received for free from purchasing my previous biking shoes. Though the SH-51s (lateral release), in my opinion, are inferior to the SH-56s (multi-directional release), I didn’t think it would affect my spinning experience, or really matter. They were made by the same company, as well as looked pretty much the same. And, these shoes were going to primarily perform indoors.
For the most part, my experience with the Shimano SH-51s were okay. They allowed me to clip in to the bike pedals and kept me secure. However, the daily clipping and lateral-unclipping of the shoes took a toll on the reinforcement plates, and eventually, stripped out a thread….
I prolonged the need to replace the reinforcement plates by switching holes (in both shoes for consistency) to thread the cleats in. But recently, the last set of holes gave way, and now, here I am, sharing my experience in replacing the Sidi Reinforcement Plates…. which was not all that fun, considering that access is granted only through the inner sole.
To get started… I removed the blue outer-inner liner (green arrow below) to expose the inner-inner sole (mustard yellow arrow). You’ll notice that there are two screws embedded at the heel – there’s no need to remove them (Trust me, I did myself and that did nothing but waste time).
Next step was to unbuckle the straps. This exposed the inner sole better and allowed for better access to the reinforcement plate.
Flipping the shoe over, all I did was take a screwdriver and jammed that thing through the inner sole….
.. anticipating the need to eventually replace this plate, Sidi pre-cut the inner sole. I used my screwdriver to help widen the flap opening to pop out the broken reinforcement plate…
did a quick switcheroo…
…After replacing the inner-inner sole flap and the outer-inner sole, the shoe was almost ready to rock-n-roll.
For good measure, I got rid of the SH-51s, and replaced them with the SH-56s, so hopefully, I will not have to ever replace the reinforcement plates again.
You can pick up replacement reinforcement plates from pretty much any bicycling shop.
I picked mine up from Huck n Roll via Amazon.