Pedals have without doubt got to be one of the most important components on your bike. At the end of the day without pedals we wouldn’t be going anywhere.
I have and probably always will ride on flat pedals. I’m not interested in marginal gains in pedal efficiency and never getting my feet bounced from the pedals as I’m clipped in. I’m not a racer. I ride bikes for the fun of it and if I can’t go round every single corner sideways with my inside foot out I’m not having fun...
When I was in the market for a new set of flat pedals that were bombproof, idiot proof and looked smart my search didn’t take very long. I didn’t look much further than the new Shimano Saint PD-MX80 Flat pedals.
First impressions of the pedals were great. They looked pretty bombproof yet still had a distinct swarve style with the two tone black/silver colours. They had a good amount of height adjustable pins and a big platform for laying down the power. It looked like it ticked all of my personal boxes and was exactly what I’d been looking for.
These pedals replace the PD-MX30 DX pedals that had been proven to be pretty popular. Compared to the new Saint pedals the DX had an 8.5mm higher profile, 3mm thinner footprint, much smaller traction pins, and were less concaved.
On paper the Saints are thinner, wider, have longer pins and more concaved. If the DX pedals were good the Saint’s should be world beaters!
The pedals feature 18 pins that on arrival were in their shortest setting with the spacers on all the pins. I’ll be honest here… Almost instantly I took every spacer out and ran the pedals all the pins in their longest position and never looked back. It was slightly frustrating that I had to remove every pin individually to take the washer out and then re-install all the pins but that isn’t a real complaint.
The Saints are a great looking set of pedals. The black and silver colour has been great with the surfaces most susceptible to wear in silver meaning they will look less tatty for longer than a painted surface. It’s not going to be a deal breaker in the heavy duty flat pedal market but it’s nice to know your new pedals won’t be ruined after 3 rides!
In the mechanical department the PD-MX80’s are kept turning with a set of high quality angular contact bearings on the nearside and a needle bearing on the outside edge. This is a more sophisticated set up than a cheaper pedal which usually would use a bush on the outside edge that wouldn’t last as long. They also make use of the great steel axles that are seen on all Shimano pedals so you can rest assured you aren’t going to destroy the axles in a hurry!
The Saint pedals generally are great in the mud clearance stakes and I have never had a problem with a hoof-full of slop even during the winter. It does annoy me slightly that the 2 holes on the outside edge of the platform that give you access to the pin from the opposite side of the pedal clog and fill flush with mud but they are very small and certainly doesn’t effect performance.
Since I’ve had them, the pedals haven’t required any maintenance. When curiosity finally got the better of me and I took a look inside the pedals the grease was still in pristine condition with no sign of wear even after many miles of mucky wet rides! I can’t comment on how they would be to service as they have nver needed it but I don’t think that would actually be something you would need to be doing very often! They are 100% a fit forget product!
My pedals have taken a good and proper beating now for 3 months and they have the battle scars to match but they are still running sweet as a nut without a single minute of spanner time being thrown in their direction. I don’t think I have one single complaint especially when you are only paying an RRP of £59.99
For me, one of my highlights is the design. They look great yet are still reasonably understated. There’s nothing truly bling on show but they certainly have an air of style over them. That gold end cap on the axle pulls the whole design together and makes for a cracking set of pedals.
Probably not for you if your weight conscious but If your looking for a reliable, strong, grippy set of flat pedals with a good sized platform. You can't go to far wrong with a pair of Shimano Saint pedals!
The Saint pedals have an RRP of £59.99 and are distributed in the UK by Madison