WHAT: Straitline Flat Pedals
WHERE: (250) 655-6603, www.straitlinecomponents.com
HOW MUCH: $135 US
Good flat pedals require a few key elements. They should be thin to keep your foot as close to the center of the spindle as possible for stability, they need to have good traction and they also require durable bearing assemblies. Finding an acceptable compromise between strong bearings and a thin profile can be a challenge however. The folks at Straitline have gone about solving the problem using a polymer bushing assembly instead of traditional roller or needle bearings.
Straitline flat pedals hail from Sidney, British Columbia, just across the sound from Bellingham, Washington. Their pedals appear to be nicely manufactured with a high-quality anodized finish and laser etched logos. Chamfered and broken edges are found all around to illustrate Straitline's attention to detail.
At only 17.5mm thick at the spindle, the pedals are some of the thinnest on the market—on par with the Specialized Lo Pro Mag models. As for traction, 14 stainless pins per side insure your shoes stay glued in place. The traction studs use a standard-sized hex nut at their base, which can't get filled with rock or deformed on impact as easily as tiny hex head set screws.
The pedals have 12mm chromoly spindles with standard MTB pedal threads and weigh 518 grams per pair, but are also available with titanium spindles for a weight savings of 68 grams. Spindles are secured to the body by not one, but two E-clips for added safety and peace of mind.
The polymer bushings that Straitline's pedals spin on weigh less and are supposed to run smoother, quieter and longer than typical bearings. The bushings are maintenance free and double-sealed from dust. They feel very smooth but also a little stiff, compared to regular bearings—we'll be riding a pair of these for the next few months and report back on how they break in and hold up.