• Posted Jul 16, 2016

Shimano’s SPD sandals have developed a cult-like following, and new for 2017 is the redesigned SD5, with a two-strap enclosure.

Iowa is the world's leader in cycling sandal sales and Shimano shines through with theirs new 2017 Explorer Collection.

Shimano’s new Explorer Collection integrates together a broad line of technology-driven and stylish products for cyclists who commute, tour (on- and off-road), or ride for fun and fitness. Designed to perform as well off as on the bike, this cohesive collection includes: apparel, jackets, gloves, accessories, packs and bags and SPD and Click’r footwear.

Focusing on design, comfort and safety, the Transit range of the new 2017 Explorer Collection was created for anything from a cross-town commute to mountain touring. While simplistic and elegant on the surface, cleverly integrated technical features increase comfort and safety throughout the product line.

The SD5 gives riders the option of securely clipping into pedals and still having a cooling breeze on their toes. Both RT and MT models are available for men and women whilst the SD5 sandal is unisex.

Iowa - the Sandal Tribe

Shimano and the other cycling shoe companies never "got it". "Why are all these Iowans in love with cycling sandals?" Well.. Iowans "got it" and they love their sandals. Out-of-staters that come to RAGBRAI have learned how comfortable a cycling sandal can be. When we still ride out-of-state wearing sandals, we still get strange looks and strange questions. We cannot believe this cult following has not taken off outside Iowa. Here is an old Feature form 2008 that we posted about the "Sandal Tribe"

Shimano chose Iowans to provide input and feedback during the development and prototype phases for these new sandals. Shimano went back to the two-strap version that was so popular back in the early 2000s. The previous 3-strap models did not go over too well as there were too much coverage. Lots of wearers "customized" their sandals back to 2-straps, by hacking on of the straps off with a utility knife.

OK, we think it is a bit strange that Shimano classifies these sandals under their "Mountain Touring" section, but what-eves... We like them and they are finally available.


  • A great choice for casual riding with pedaling efficiency in seasonal weather
  • Flat foot bed for long distance comfort
  • Glass fiber reinforced shank plate for optimum sole rigidity
  • Wide, stable rubber sole for comfortable riding and walking
  • Durable synthetic leather upper with moisture control mesh layering
  • Classic dual strap design for an efficient, secure, comfortable fit
  • More info


AVAILABILITY - Many Iowa Bike Shops starting to get them in-stock July 14th.
MODEL: SH-SD500 (SD5) 2017
MSRP: $120
COLOR: Dark Gray
WEIGHT 387g (size 42)


We purchased a pair on July 15th from BikeWorld in Urbandale. We have always worn Lake sandals and Justin, the manager said "We'll convert you...". In fact Justin sent us an email a week ago letting us know when their shipment was arriving.

Even though our Lake Sandals were only a couple years worn and... we had a brand new pair of Lakes in the box, we still decided to try these new "Mountain Touring" sandals out.

First Impressions - We like 'em. Comfortable and lightweight. We wore them walking out of the store, ran a few errands and kept them on into the evening with no hot-spots or pinch-points.They are much lighter than the Lake sandals, but they don't have the toe-lip like the Lakes does. We like that toe-lip, but time will tell. When wearing some sandals our feet seem to stick to the bottom. The Shimano foots bed seems a bit slick, but still comfortable. We'll see how they do when wet too.

We've worn Keen sandals too and thing the foot coverage is way too much. These Shimano sandals offer minimal coverage with good stability while walking and cycling.

We'll be mounting our cleats and riding 60+ miles in them on Sunday. So stay tuned...

What to do?

Get into a local bike shop like BikeWorld in Urbandale and purchase a pair asap in you are in need.

Many shops say they'll have an inventory on RAGBRAI, but we are betting they will sell-out quickly! If you do purchase on RAGBRAI, it may be wise to bring your own cleats just in case the shop does not have them in stock.






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I've been thinking about getting bike sandals and the Shimano version is one I'm considering. I'm curious how you liked them.

#1 - Greghalf posted Aug 2, 2017

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