Flat pedals are something of a rare sight around the Bicycle Times office. From full-lycra to full-face mountain bike rides, chances are we’re clipping in.
All this cleat-lovin’ makes it even more interesting that when the Spike pedals from Spank showed up at the office there was a bit of a scrum to see who would get to ride them. With a massive platform and 10 adjustable pins per side, it was pretty clear they would be taking traction to a whole new level.
The aluminum alloy body is cold forged rather than extruded for a better strength to weight ratio, is only 12mm thin (not including pins) and features an angled leading edge and sides to help deflect pedal strikes and for cornering clearance. Each pedal features eight hex head pins and two grub screws per side and they all come uninstalled for a little DIY setup. The body spins on a steel spindle with an oversized steel bearing on the inside and an IGUS bushing on the outer. The body itself mounts fully flush against the crankarms and requires a pair of included washers to keep it spinning freely. The bearing’s bulge is also imperceptible underfoot. At 400g per pair, they aren’t super light, but competitive with other high quality flats.
Riding with a pair of super-sticky shoes like the FiveTen Freerider VXI, the Spike pedals deliver an insane amount of grip. While it obviously cannot replicate the lifting forces of a clipless pedal, the combo all but eliminates foot rotation, so if you need to adjust you have to lift up your foot and place it back down. With less aggressive footwear this issue largely disappears.
Over the past few months I’ve ridden the Spikes on all sorts of bikes, from trail riding to city rides to fat bikes in the snow (they shed snow very well). One little turn of the acorn nut to tighten up some free play was all the maintenance needed. Safe to say the thin profile and massive size of the Spikes has spoiled me against all other flats. They’re available in five colors for $129.