Sunday, May 15, 2011

New Pedals?

Since learning that rotational weight matters and is very different than just dead weight, I'm looking at other ways to save on rotational weight. What else moves round and round? Pedals! I first chose the pedals I have now based on price, being SPD compatible, being dual sided so friends can ride w/o special shoes and having the cool red accent color to them.

It's been over a year and now that most of my friends who want to ride the trike have already ridden it, I'm not so concerned about the pedals being dual sided with a platform on the other side. This gives me a few more choices.

Not being restricted to dual sided pedals with platforms one on side opens up the range of choices.

I'm considering the Shimano PD-M520. It's got the chrome and black look, very minimalistic, weighs 86g less than my current ones and is priced at only $4 more. Amazon's listing them for $34 shipped.

The 86g savings is pretty minimal though. And that's per pair - not each. That equals 0.19lbs - almost a 1/4 lbs worth of shedded weight.

What does that actually mean relatively speaking?

One way is to find the priciest cheapest pedals and compare those to these 380g PD-M520's. Chainreaction Bicycles however, reports that these are 420g. According to the Weight Winnie chart at the bottom of this post, it's 374g. What's with the discrepancies?

I'm not sure who spends $350 (most expensive price for these is $486) on pedals, but that's the price of these puppies. So how much do these weigh? The weight of a feather? With a price tag like this, do they pedal for you? No and no. They weigh174g. Compared to my current ones at 466g, that's a difference of 292g or 0.64lbs. They're 63% lighter.

These are road pedals though and probably not a fair comparison.

These Shimano PD-A520 weigh 315g and cost $45. That's a 65g difference from the one's I'm eying and a 151g (32%) difference from the ones I'm currently using.

These Shimano PD-MM770 Deore's weigh 350g and Amazon wants $78 for them. This model is a step higher than the $34 ones I want. Difference in weight is only 30g.

Perhaps the best way to find out what the Shimano PD-M520's spec means relative to what's available is to look at the mountain bike racing version.

It's called the Shimano XTR 980 (priced $165) and weighs......315g. These make the PD-A520's look like a sweet deal!

So what does all this tell me?

1. 466g is a lot for a pair of pedals.
2. 86g savings if I buy the Shimano PD-M520's is quite a substantial difference.
3. I could save almost twice that by getting the PD-A520's that weigh 151g (0.33lbs) less than the ones I have.
4. If racers are using 315g pedals and cheap ones are 466g, 390g is right smack in the middle.
5. Remembering that 0.4lbs (181g) in the new rear wheel setup made a world of a difference, I'm thinking that a similar reduction in weight may increase performance on the front end with the pedals.

I guess I'm not the only nut that compares grams of pedals. Check here for a full list.

My research addition continued and I searched for more pedals. This one's impressive. It looks a lot like the Shimano PD-A520's, but these are the PD-A600's. Two-toned and way lighter. That's a 175g or 0.39lb difference compared to my current setup!


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