Clip in pedal /shoe contact with road surface look style

New rambler x30 owner, but 14 year experience riding easy racer gold rush, previously owned catrike expedition. On first ride on rambler I experienced heel of shoe contact while pedaling during normal ankle rotation through full stroke and pull at bottom. Crank arms are 165, shoe size 48(11.5) shimano look style pedals bottom 4.5 inch road clearance. Has anyone had this experience who might offer suggested solutions. My sense is straight boom does not allow proper and safe crank arm / pedal clearance!


  • Same here. 24" wheels and tires all the way around. No heel strike now.
  • Extend the boom to the max line, then move your seat forward to compensate. The frame isn't perfectly horizontal, the front is raised a little. Extending the boom should raise it some more.

    Something else that can help is reclining the seat more, that will naturally lift your heels relative to the ground.

    For comparison, I'm a 6ft tall size 14 feet rider of a Rover with the standard 20 inch wheels. When I first got the trike, and still rode in an upright position, I could occasionally feel my heel scrape the ground. That usually meant my foot wasn't extending enough during the stroke, though.

    - PaulNM
  • While going over average speed bump shoe made hard contact, no damage or injury, but straight boom / pedal clearance is a real concern . I really question having to up-grade wheel size on a new purchase picked-up 8/3/16. Since this is holiday week-end I am waiting TerraTrike answer expected tomorrow.
  • Boom is already extended max, seat forward, which shifts body forward and increases sudden braking safety concerns. Dealer used max extension(I need small/med ext) so as not to need to shorten chain.
  • edited September 2016
    I set up my Rambler so that there was around 1/2" clearance between the horizontal crossbar and my heel. pushed my cleats back as far as possible on the shoe, size 47 shimano, never had an issue. If your LBS will not set your Rambler up properly because they don't want to break a chain I would find another shop. 

    Maybe you should have someone measure the heel to road clearance just to put your mind at ease. I think making contact on a speed bump is just a timing issue as in go over them with level pedals? 

    As to braking it is true you can lift the rear wheel during hard braking but as soon as you feather the brakes the rear will drop back down. As with two wheeled bikes it is always a good idea to practice hard emergency braking in a deserted parking lot so you understand how the trike will respond to lifting the rear wheel before you have to do the same in traffic.
  • Problems solved, returned to dealer and he made some super adjustments.Now proud owner of Rambler!!
  • Sounds like they still haven't designed shoes to be worn on trikes.  Now I understand why the expensive bikes have the pedals so far above the seat.  And, I guess that's why Terra Trike still doesn't sell them.
  • My Terra trike Zoomer has pedals that are 10" above ground in the low position. This is with a angled boom.
    Unfortunately the models with horizontal booms and riders with larger feet may have a heel strike issue using shoes that mechanically fasten.
  • edited September 2016
    I recently bought a Rambler and have discovered the same even with size 12 shoes with the stock 20 in. tires.  I have considered swapping the pedals out for clipless but concerned that depending upon where the shoe connects with the pedal, it might actually make the problem worse.  I know there are different clipless types as well as shoes where the cleat is adjustable (jeffacme above mentions his Shimano shoes).  If someone has successfully utilized a particular type of clipless pedal, it would be helpful to know what that might be.  Thanks.

  • edited September 2016
    I have a thought for a possible fix for heel strike on the Rambler. One could mark the boom where it enters the frame. Then remove the boom, leave the cranks on it, and take it to a shop that can bend pipe. Have a slight bend put in the boom between the point where it enters the frame and the water bottle mount. This bend is to put the bottom bracket (and pedals) higher off the ground. It wouldn't take much to increase the ground clearance by a couple inches, and this shouldn't affect the routing of the chain. I'm not talking much of a bend here. Maybe a degree or two. If the boom is secured solidly enough there won't be any twisting of the boom in the frame either.
    As far as clipless pedals are concerned, I used the Shimano dual pedals. They have the SPD clipless on one side and regular pedals on the other. That way I don't need the clipless shoes if I'm doing a quick ride to the store or something.
    For longer rides I DEFINITELY  use the clipless as I don't need to struggle to keep my feet where I want them on the pedals.
  • Good idea Gern
  • That will work as long as the chain still has a clear path to the back sprocket.  If it rubs against the tube with each pedal stroke, you will soon be buying new tubes and possibly a new chain as it will be clogged with black plastic.
  • edited September 2016
    The chain routing was foremost in my consideration. That is why I suggested only a couple degree bend. That will give a couple inches more clearance of the pedals to the ground and should not affect chain length or routing. I have a 2014 Rambler and looked it over before putting forth this suggestion.
    This possible fix doesn't require any parts purchase and/or replacement.
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