Cycling Along The Way...

My photo
Silver City, NM, United States
Riders of the wheel. Racers, Roadies, Mountain bikers, Touring cyclists, Commuters, and others. Diamond frames, recumbents, trikes, and more. Sharing a web of connections often misunderstood or unappreciated by those who don't ride. Herewith, my attempt to share some of the more rational thoughts that flit around inside my head while bicycling, knocking back a brew or three, or just thinking about life. Reviews of bicycles, gear, touring, and more, plus some unsolicited posts about people, politics, and philosophy. Other things, too. Me: retired, gave up my TV in 1988, avid cyclist, several cross country tours completed with more to come. Your thoughts?

Monday, September 19, 2011


This is an update on the Keen Austin Pedal cycling shoes that I bought in 2010 to use on my cross country bicycle ride, which incidentally ended one year ago tomorrow when I rode 100 miles from my friends' (Clyde and Margaret) camp on Lake Canadarago just south of Richfield Springs, NY, to my hometown of Glens Falls, NY.  I had spent the previous 3 nights and two days at the camp.  Luxuriously quiet and hanging with two good friends from college (SUNY Oneonta) days.  Beer, wine, food, and Cooperstown, too.  What's not to love about that?  More on that last day's ride in another post...

Ok, so back to the Keen shoes.  To refresh your collective memories, whoever in their right minds that may possibly read these posts, I had gone out for a short bicycle ride on Friday, July 29, 2011, and noticed that I was having some difficulty getting my left shoe out of the Shimano M324 SPD pedal.  Nothing seemed suspicious to me then.  On arriving home in Silver City, I rode through the carport to the back patio, unclipped my right shoe, tried to unclip my left dice.  I struggled a little with it and, when I finally got my shoe off, the SPD clip was still connected to the pedal along with a chunk of the sole from the Keen Austin Pedal shoe.  Sucked.  Here's the photo of what the shoe looked like:
Note the hole in the bottom of the shoe!
As you can see, there is a hole in the bottom of the Keen Austin Pedal shoe where the SPD cleat should be attached.  Glad it happened outside my backdoor rather than on the road, but, with the dual platform on the Shimano M324 pedals, I probably would not have had a serious problem getting home.  A plus with these pedals.  I actually laughed when this happened, then thought, "Are these covered by a warranty?".  With that thought in my head, I went inside, powered up the laptop and checked the Keen website.  I also tried to see if I had kept a digital copy of my bill of sale from where I had purchased the shoes.  No luck.  What was good, however, is that there was a good chance these would be covered by Keen's warranty.  I completed the form sans some info that I wasn't able to find, i.e., Where did I buy the shoes? What did I pay for them?  Couldn't remember nor could I find any digital info in my laptop.  So, I called Keen and spoke to Nina, one of their reps.  What I distinctly remember about that interchange was that she told me to take a photo of the damaged shoe, attach it to the digital warranty claim and email it to them and that there was cause for cheer since it most likely would be covered.  I also noted that Nina assumed that I knew how to take the photo, store it in my laptop, then attach it....things are changing, eh?

Now, it was time to wait, which I am not good at.  In the interim, I used my Keen Commuter Bicycling Sandals that I had just purchased before the Austin shoes went belly up, er, soles up.  So, I had sandals to wear and the weather was right for these.  I made a few calls to Keen after a period of time that their website stated was about how long it would take to process my claim.  I had submitted the claim on July 29, 2011, and the rep I spoke with stated this was their busiest time of the year.  My claim might take a bit longer than normal.  On Aug. 22, 2011, I received an email from Keen stating that my claim had been approved and included in the email was a code for me to use on the Keen website, where I could select a replacement pair of the Keen Austin Pedal shoes.  Loved it.  They even mailed them to me for free and they got here fast, too.  Got to love this kind of attention to customer service.

So, here are the new Keen Austin Pedal cycling shoes.  They look so clean and new....and new SPD cleats.  Between the time I submitted the warranty claim and I received the new shoes, I lost the cleats!

To bring this to a happy closing, the Steep Canyon Rangers bringing you their style of bluegrass!