I gotta say, that’s one nice looking clipless pedal.
The designer, Sam Hunter of Ogden, says he created this pedal with “Infinite Engagement Positions” because of the problem of engaging the cleats when the pedals aren’t aligned just right. The pedal appears to have a spiral mechanism; the cleat slides into that no matter the pedal position. Hunter claims this allows super quick and easy engagement of cleat to pedal.
I don’t have this problem — I quickly pop my cleats in on the upstroke; the first thing I see with this pedal is hotfoot, but your mileage may vary.
A part of me wonders if this might infringe on Cranks Brothers’ patent for their Eggbeater pedals. Pedal spindles are also one of those things that are more difficult to design than you might think, even with with field testing on Utah singletrack. The 236 grams claimed for both pedals, cleats and hardware makes me a little bit nervous.
In any case, I really like this design. Hunter already has $40,000 in pledges for this Kickstarter project, taking him nearly halfway to his $85,000 goal with 50 days to go, so plenty of people obviously see the need for this solution.
From the video it seems that the spiral mechanism is just a spring and the base plate is engaged on the sides of the two end cylinders. Two issues I think could be relevant are a) the rotation of the cylinders might wear off the base plate contact points quite quickly, and b) there is no float control (they mention it on the kickstarter, but don’t give a solution). I must say, though, that it sure looks good!
If you ride more than say, once a year, and you have as much trouble clipping in as the guy in the video, I recommend platforms. Except for those silly, one-sided pedals like the Shimano 324, I’ve never encountered a clipless pedal I had to look at or orient, and I don’t even care for clipless–I prefer platforms (not because I can’t clip in, though). Plus, the pedals I’ve found most difficult to use off-road are the tiniest, like the basic Eggbeater–and this one is even smaller. Couple finding the small pedal in rough terrain with, as Richard notes, likely hotfoot, and I can’t see this as a major game-changer, especially for mountain bikes.
Still, while I don’t agree with his premise that modern clipless pedals are just too difficult to use, I certainly admire his better-mousetrap motivation. That’s why bikes just keep getting better.
Victor, I’ve personally ridden hundreds of miles with Sam Hunter with these pedals and there is virtually no wear. From the beautiful single track of the Bonneville Shore Line to the crazy technical down hill tracks of Brian Head. These pedals rock!
I’m sure the pedals work but “hundreds of miles” is not a reassuring statement. That’s a single weekend of riding for a lot of us.