Got a few comments and a handful of emails about the Shimano shoes.
I like Damian’s comment about Adam having a thing or two to say to Shimano about the slickness!
So, here comes a photo or two and a brief tutorial.
First: take a dremal or similar and grind out a 5-8mm wide section of your lugs. You are basically creating a lug near the front of the shoe. When I race, I use toe spikes unless the course is bone dry.
With the new smaller front end lugs your shoes are now lighter and have a more aggressive tread.
Second: prep your shoe like you would a sweet new carbon tubular wheelset. A light sanding, clean with rubbing alcohol; prep the bottom of shoe with at least 3 thin coats of tubular glue. Vittoria or Panaracer are my favorites.
FMBs work best. You should have a few of those laying around eh? The lighter the better. You don’t want to be adding too much rotational weight to yourself.
Coat and prep the cut-up tread section like you would if you were mounting it to a rim. At least 3 coats. Thin coats. Let them dry in between each application.
Make sure you have prepared more surface area of the carbon on the bottom of your sole than the size of the tread you are laying. Otherwise the edges will not seal up and the tread will peel off.
Put a final wet coat on the shoes and stick the tread on the bottom of the sole! Apply even, firm pressure. Overnight if possible. Use a vice, or cinder block or electrical tape. Get creative. You could stick them in one of these.
Now, due to the nature of clipping in to your pedals, you are constantly “scraping” the bottom of your shoes. And if your technique needs work, you will find your newly glued up tread peeling up just behind the cleat.
Not a lot you can do about that. Except work on your technique. I’m experimenting with mounting the tread right behind or even under the cleat. Let you know how that goes.
I put about %75 of a cx season on a pair of the M300s with a TUFO glued to the bottom of it. Once I went to Belgium in December, it eventually peeled off and I took to using some replaceable “bathtub grippy strips” before every race. And even double sided foam tape worked pretty good.
You are not adding the strip for running traction, you just don’t want your foot to slip around when you are flailing-searching for the pedals. Sandpaper or griptape could work though it may clog in the sand and mud.
Have you seen the PROs racing in Europe? Their technique is so good, they are in the pedals and sprinting away before hacks like us even have our hips over the saddle. They NEVER slip a pedal!