No, it is not possible to install Shimano cleats on crank brother pedals, the reason is that Shimano cleats and crank brother cleats have different cleat systems, Shimano cleats are compatible and are specific for 3 cleat nut bolts while crank brother pedals have two cleat bolt system, there is a difference of one cleat bolt. there is a big difference between them Shimano cleats are SPD cleats and are specific for Shimano cleat pedals while crank brother pedals are non-Shimano brand and are non-SPD and are also non-compatible with the Shimano cleats, you can read the box of the crank brother pedals where the instructions and guidance are written, you cannot find anything about their compatibility with the Shimano cleats.
There is a big difference between Shimano cleat and crank brother pedal brands, all the cleats which are Shimano brands and are manufactured and branded by Shimano brands are compatible with all those pedals of cycling categories which are SPD pedals, so if your bike pedals are SPD pedals you can easily install Shimano cleats due to compatibility but all the crank brother pedals are not SPD pedals and these pedals are compatible with all those cleats which are non-SPD pedals and are non-compatible with the SPD cleats.
Why We Cannot Use Shimano Cleats With Crank Brother Pedals?
There is a big difference in their manufacturing and making. Shimano cleats are made up of stainless steel while crank brother pedals are manufactured in brass material, now you would know much better steel is too much strong, stiff, firm, and more durable as compared to brass material, there is no any strictness of not using of Shimano cleats with the crank brother pedals, if you cannot afford new compatible cleats and pedals for your bike and you have decided to use the same setup for riding on trails, then yes you can use them, but cleats will not install within the crank bros pedals and you have to place your Shimano cleats on the flat surface of the crank bros pedals, now their are many disadvantages of using this setup, after a few rides you will notice the upper and lower surfaces of your crank brother pedals are ruining and damaging and rubbing badly, steel material of the Shimano cleats is responsible for this damage and pedals would wear out in a less time, if you are still using Shimano steel cleats on brass material crank brother pedals.
Advantages Of Shimano Cleats With Crank Brother Pedals:
Ignoring the materials of these cleats and pedals, it has been proved from experiments that Shimano cleats are heavier in weight while crank brother pedals are lighter in their weight, now if you use heavier cleats with lighter pedals, surely you will get better, more comfortable, and easier ride without any fatigue and tiredness, crank brother are also lighter from the Shimano SPD pedals when you push crank bros pedals, it will give much better feel and you will start pushing pedals rapidly without andy tensioning, mostly on uphill, trails, wet and muddy trails and also on beachside areas where its sand all around, these crank brother pedals are going to help you a lot more than that of Shimano SPD pedals. but if you are living in those areas where it snows all around even on the roads, then these pedals are not going to help you, crank brother pedals would slip and skid without even alarming you due to their lighter weight, you have to keep the speed of your bike in a limited and normal range.
Difference In Clipping, Mounting, And Installing Of Shimano Pedals, Cleats, And Crank Brother Pedals And Cleats:
Shimano or SPD cleats are much more difficult to mount within the pedals, but crank brother pedals are much easier and install in less time without any difficulty. you have to install or clip Shimano cleats by bringing the clipped place of cleats in the upward direction. if you have not mounted or clipped Shimano cleats accurately and properly within the Shimano pedals, it will result in slipping and skidding of your shoes from the pedals, so crank brother cleats are easier to install within the 2-bolt pedal system as compared to Shimano cleat 3 bolt pedals.
When you are riding on hard and rough terrains, or even on road trails, and you want to stop your bike, you can easily install crank brother cleats, but if you are wearing Shimano cleats then you will feel a little bit irritated about these shoes and cleats, it is the reason that most riders are buying and ordering crank brother pedals due to their easier wearing and uninstalling within the pedals.
Compatibility Of Shimano And Crank Brother Cleats With Shoes:
Crank brother cleats are simply designed and you can use any type or any kind of shoes to produce rotating torque force in these pedals but SPD pedals have limited cleats due to differences in the angle of degree in these cleats, it is not possible to use random shoes for these cleats, it is the reason that both Shimano and crank rother cleats and pedals have their own advantages on an individual basis.
Disadvantages Of Crank Brother Pedals:
Stretching and tensioning is the most important thing for a rider who is wearing Shimano SPD or crank brother shoes, you have to push your bike pedals to maintain the tension between your feet, pedal, and the rotating force.
When you push crank brother pedals you will not notice any tensioning in these pedals, it is due to their lighter weight, lesser price, and backward brand, most those manufacturers which are making these crank brother pedals and cleats, these are not paying enough attention to them, and when they make a single brand, they will not keenly observe their product and they people will start to order them and when the manufacturers know that their product is selling too much in the market, these will not invent any new features in their product, it is the reason that Shimano SPD pedals and cleats are still more valuable and more popular due to their better working than crank brother pedals.