Friday, 24 August 2012

Review - Raleigh Outback SPD type pedal

My daughter has treated herself to a pair of these pedals for her Birthday Bike Project.  She went into our LBS and selected a pair of shoes, having tried on every conceivable pair (at least twice), walked around in them, looked in the mirror and negotiated the price.  According to Rachel (Mrs Ramblings) it took ages.  Much quicker was the selection of the pedals with the friendly LBS man saying "you can have the lot for £75".  We'll do a review on the shoes soon but in the meantime, we're not too sure about these pedals.

To put them in context, the ticket price is £29.99 and are distributed by Raleigh  and manufactured in Taiwan.  I don't think SPD compatible pedals come very much cheaper than that very often.  They are double sided, with adjustable spring tension and come complete with a pair of cleats.  The box says they have "smooth running ball bearings" which we may dispute a little.  One side is perfect, the other is a little on the rough side but I'm sure that'll wear in quickly.  The price is curious in a way.  By the time you take off 20% VAT, bear in mind the LBS will probably make around £8 to £10 profit, Raleigh themselves will take a slice, someone will pay for the cost of shipping them half way around the world.  Then there's the packaging and the ex-factory price.  No one is getting rich out of these pedals.  The actual cost of making these must be very little.

Becky seems to have adapted very well to using them and fully recognises the benefits of this type of clipless pedals.  All good stuff.

Then, out of curiosity, I thought I would try these myself, while wearing my own SPD compatible Specialized Sonoma shoes.  They snapped in with the familar click alright but it was less easy to get out.  Twisting my heal outwards was simple enough but then I realised the technique required pulling my foot slightly backwards.  This is a little unnerving and on closer examination of the pedals the metal guide that guards the cleats in is more pronounced.

Would we buy these again?  Probably not but they do work in a satisfactory manner but  without setting the world on fire

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