Chromag Synth Pedals
Words by Drew Rohde | Photos by Chili Dog
Modeled after one of my all time favorite pedals, the Scarab, Chromag’s Synth piqued my interest right away. I’ve long been a fan of synthetic pedals. As a SoCal native who spent way too much time riding in axle deep rain ruts and dragging pedals on exposed rocks, the benefits are many and range from affordability to reduced drag across trail obstacles. Let’s dig in and take a closer look at the new Chromag Synth pedals.
At just $65 the Synth pedals are designed to be affordable while retaining the reliability of other Chromag offerings. The Synth pedals may not look as flashy as their Scarab counterpart, but they spin on the same high-end axles and bearing assembly so you can rest assured knowing the internals are easily serviceable and will last a long time.
The platform is an injection molded, nylon reinforced polycarbonate/nylon material and measures 110mm x 105mm. The concave pedals have 12 pins on each side and weigh 382 grams. If black isn’t loud enough for you, Chromag has four other flavors to choose from so you can be sure to keep your style game on point.
When I first pulled the Synth pedals out of the box I was impressed with the overall appearance, feel and build. The threaded pin inserts looked clean and the platform was a great size for my size 10.5 foot. Unfortunately by the third ride all those pins were just about gone as they had backed themselves out at an alarming rate. I sent Chromag an email and found out they had a batch of pedals that were assembled incorrectly and they’d get me a replacement set.
The second pair of pedals looked identical to the first but I was assured the pin issue was fixed. I installed the new pedals and have put them on multiple bikes ridden by a couple different riders. Now a couple months old, the pedals are still in great shape and have retained every single pin.
I ride with Fiveten Freerider High Tops and found pedal traction to be completely acceptable on most bikes. I found that while riding bikes with less than desirable suspension performance on choppy or rough terrain my feet did bounce forward a little bit more than I’d like. I blame that on the bikes more than the pedals, but this should be taken into account if you ride a stiff set up or want the grippiest pedals ever.
They aren’t the outright grippiest pedals on the market but they offer a good amount of traction while still allowing for foot adjustments on the move. One of my favorite things about synthetic pedals is their ability to glide passed hard obstacles with minimal resistance or drag. While my new test grounds in Oregon don’t have tons of deep ruts outlined with sandstone, I was able to hit a few volcanic boulders and large roots during my testing. I even drug them across some granite boulders in Whistler and breathed relief as they slid along the rocks rather than catching or digging in. Throughout the test period of bike washing, extreme dust and bike park impacts, the pedals remain unphased.
To put it simply, the Chromag Synth pedals have found a regular spot in my test bike rotation. Often times I’ll ride a pair of pedals just long enough and then they collect dust in my pedal box. The Synth’s have remained on my current test bike and will very possibly find their way onto the next.
Weight: 382 grams