Eurobike 2012: Crank Brothers' new pedals, wheels and pumps

John Stevenson John Stevenson

Accessory maker Crank Brothers rolled out new pedals, wheels and pumps at Eurobike last week.

The new Mallet downhill pedal is bigger and beefier than last year’s skinny incarnation, but still fairly light at a claimed 479g.

Probably most notable for British trail riders are the new Mallet pedals. Crank Brothers’ gravity riders asked for a pedal with a wider platform than the previous narrow Mallets with their polycarbonate hybrid bodies. The broad, beefy Mallet (which by our counting is version 4 of the design) is the reply.

As well as a wider body, the new Mallet has a longer axle to provide clearance for bulkier BMX-style shoes favoured by downhillers and riders who like to be able to walk comfortably when they get off the bike.

The body is extruded and machined aluminium, and with a simple perimeter cage, it’s the least fussy Mallet design yet. There are eight grub screws each side for grip and the four0sided Crank Brothers mechanism nestles in the middle, as ever.

All-mountain wheels with carbon rims were a Eurobike mini-trend. Crank Brothers is on board with the iodine 11 wheels.

Carbon fiber wheels aren’t just for racing any more as everyone looks for ways to save weight on do-everything bikes, and word spreads about the ‘quiet’ ride of carbon rims. Crank Brothers is in the fray with the new Iodine 11 rims which boast a 21mm internal rim width and a claimed weight of 1550g.

While some high-end wheel makers have all but abandoned 26inch wheels, Crank Brothers’Andrew Herrick says they still have plenty of demand for the original mountain bike wheel size, especially from riders looking to upgrade their existing bikes.

New Crank Brothers Gem S and Gem L. Plastic bodies and double-ended valves are gone.

On a smaller scale, Crank Brothers has completely revamped its range of mini-pumps – one of the company’s original product lines. The frankly slightly downmarket plastic bodies of the old pumps are gone, replaced with gleaming anodised aluminium, and the twin-port head has been replaced with a single port design that works with presta or schrader valves.

Crank Brothers admits that the twin-port design was confusing – we could never remember which way the switch was supposed to go either.

The new pump line falls into two categories, the simple, inexpensive Gem series, and the premium Sterling pumps with optional gauges.

Crank Brothers Speedier Lever has a built in knuckle guard so that when a tight tyre finally comes lose you don’t skin your fingers.

If you struggle to get tyres on and off, Crank Brothers new Speedier Lever might be the answer. Its loop handle gives a firm grip and the knuckle guard protects your skin when a tight tyre finally lets go.

At the other end there’s a lip to help lever tyres on to the rim.

We’ve had a quick go with a Speedier Lever and it’s definitely easier to use than a regular lever – worth adding to your tool kit.

More information from Crank Brothers

Crank Brothers wheels and accessories are available in the UK via 2Pure

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