Hope’s New F22 Flat Pedal REVIEW
Review by Robert Johnston
Hope Technology’s F20 flat pedals first hit the market in 2013, and became a bit of a classic in the UK. One thing that Hope does better than most is creating products that are built to resist the elements, and the F20’s were no exception. However, for many riders the platform didn’t have the real estate nor the ultimate grip that the most aggressive mountain biking calls for, so they began to be ignored in favor of alternatives. This may be about to change though, with their new F22 flat pedals, which Hope have designed to offer improved performance all around. I won’t beat around the bush here – Hope has nailed it with these, instantly rocketing them up to the top of my aggressive flat pedal list. Check out the press release below, and what it is that makes them so good in my impressions further down.
THE PRESS RELEASE
Stronger, Bigger, Sturdier, Grippier
At Hope Technology we don’t believe in making new products for the sake of it, so after ten years of the much-loved F20, we give you the F22 Flat Pedal. The culmination of years of knowledge and expertise to make a more durable and better performing flat pedal.
Manufactured in Barnoldswick, the platform has been re-designed with a clever dual concave profile as well as a new asymmetric shape that extends further (where the F20 did not) to give better shoe support and a superior planted feel. Platform grip comes from 22 pins, with an all-new design the pins are height adjustable and feature a unique hex shape to help keep your shoe locked in place.
We kept the same proven F20 internal layout but revised the axle design for more strength, and long-term durability.
Like everything we manufacture the F22 is fully serviceable with three internal cartridge bearings and all the internal and external seals you’ve grown accustomed to from our pedals.
– Redesigned platform – 5 axis machined body (in Barnoldswick, UK) – Larger concave dome profile for stable foot support and a superior planted feel. – Asymmetric and Tapered shape for the right balance between foot stability & clearance on tight trails and in ruts. – Longer and adjustable pins with a unique hex shape face for extra bite – Enhanced concavity with shorter pins used towards the centre of the platform – Reverse loading pins so less chance of getting stuck or untightening on the trail – Proven internals from F20 remain – Three cartridge bearings and an IGUS bush – Internal and external sealing prevents any ingress of dirt and debris – Fully serviceable and re-buildable – Revised axle design for improved strength and impact resistance – Weight 360g per pair
Availability and pricing
In stock at retailers from January 10th
£145.00 // €180.00 // $183.00
*end of press release*
I was very surprised when I first picked up the F22’s. One thing I’ve never really associated Hope with is lightweight components, yet their F22’s have managed to lose a reasonable chunk of weight compared to the F20s, while gaining platform, and feel very light for their size at 364g for the pair. As with the F20 and the Union GC clip pedals, they’re shipped without any pins preinstalled, giving you the option to set them up to deliver your preferred grip. I opted to go all-out with the grip from the get go, installing the leading and trailing edge pins without any washers. The pins come supplied with loctite, making the pins thread in with reassuring resistance and giving the notion that they’ll stay put for the long haul. I measured the dimensions of the Hope F22 pedal platform to be 102mm long and 104mm wide at the extremeties, with the end of the body protruding 115mm from the crank. The pins are arranged in a 98mm square overall footprint, with a slight taper in at the outer corners down to 84mm at the leading edge and 62mm at the trailing. The body sits at 16mm thick around the perimeter, and tapers down to 14mm for the knurled center section.
First things first, how well do the F22 pedals grip? They rank up there with the grippier flat pedals I’ve had the pleasure of using, including DMR Vaults with the hilariously long optional King Pins. A combination of the thin hexagon pins that protrude 6mm from the body, and the concavity offered by the shorter mid-section pins and slightly recessed central section of the body, leaves your foot feeling beautifully sunk into the center of the pedal body, and forces the sole to bend slightly to maximize the effective penetration of the pins into the rubber. Even when your foot is sat slightly askew, there’s plenty of pin edges to find traction on your shoes and keep things in check until you get a moment to unweight and reposition. I can’t tell how much benefit the knurled center of the pedal bodies add, but they feel grippier to the touch than the smooth body sections and didn’t produce any unwanted mud build up, so I assume they aid in the grip at times without any real drawbacks. Riders who like to constantly micro adjust their feet should not look to run the pins in their maximum aggression, or even with a spacer beneath when combined with a sticky rubber shoe – different pins entirely would likely be required to reduce the purchase. Personally, I’d much rather have a better feeling pedal with maximum traction, than a pedal that makes repositioning easier.
The pins shook off some hard impacts without bending or breaking, and the reverse loading design of the more damage prone leading and trailing edge pins means you’ll always have a fresh hex key head available to undo them. There’s the risk of a bent pin causing damage to the pin hole unless straightened or snapped off before removal, but it’s still the preferred option for longevity’s sake. The tapered edges all around the body are great to see, helping the pedal to slide over impacts with trailside obstacles and the edge of ruts, without eating into platform space. As is often the case in the Tweed Valley, the F22s were in the firing line of rocks, roots and the edge of ruts every single time they left the garage, and shrugged it all off without anything more than a scar to the anodizing. Their relatively large overall size means they protrude slightly more than the thinnest and most tucked in options, so it’s a good thing they have these provisions in place to shrug off damage, but they’re by no means excessively large, with the extra size over their predecessor being put to good use.
As with all of the Hope pedals, there’s a reassuringly smooth resistance out of the box that speaks to the sealing quality, but doesn’t feel to add any drag when pedaling. This resistance lessens after the first few rides, settling at a nice comfortable zone. I’ve not spent enough time on these F22s to speak for their long term durability, though the few weeks I’ve had my set has amounted to a lot of abuse in the saturated Tweed Valley. I had a set of the F20s last for a year on a mountain bike then a further two years on a dirt jump bike without developing any play or roughness, and spent a load of time on their Union GC clipless pedals last year with the same result. With the same internals, I don’t foresee the F22s being any different, and expect I’ll be able to rag on these for the entirety of the year without needing to pull them apart. They’re a good chunk of money, comparable to the high end offerings of most companies, but their construction and performance would go a long way to justifying it for a rider looking for a killer pedal for the long haul.
The Wolf’s Last Word
Hope have done it again, taking their time to craft one of the best component offerings on the market. The F22 flat pedals are thought out incredibly well, and have set my new benchmark for future flat pedals to battle against.
Price: £145.00 // €180.00 // $183.00