Azonic is probably best known for
building hard parts that can really take a beating. As a result, its products
have a reputation for being overbuilt
and rarely are the lightest or sleekest
choice. Azonic wants to change that.
Their newest designs are more streamlined, lighter and much more aesthetically appealing.
The Flat Iron
pedal is Azonic’s minimalist platform
pedal. It sports a super-thin, 10-millimeter platform designed to bring the
rider closer to the axle of the pedal to
improve rider feel and control. The aluminum pedal body also houses a super-short chromoly axle, which makes the
thin profile possible. The bearings are
oversized and housed near the crankarm to handle the abusive loads a
downhill-specific pedal must endure
while still offering significant weight savings. The pedals also feature 40
replaceable pins that can be customized
to suit any rider’s traction preference.
Our test pedals tipped the scales at
13.8 ounces and retail for $150 at any
reputable bike shop or Azonic’s online
Field test results:
The Flat Iron
pedals look pretty unconventional.
They’re remarkably thin, which made
us eager to pedal them around the
rocky trails we do most of our testing
on. Within the first few rides, we found
ourselves becoming accustomed to the
clearance. If you’ve ever ridden high
speed into a rock garden, only to see
a boulder waiting to grab your pedal
like a carny grabs cash at a crooked
ring-toss game, you know what we’re
talking about. Those extra millimeters
of clearance make a big difference; we
frequently found ourselves biting our lips, waiting for a crash that never happened.
The shape of the pedals will satisfy
most riders; however, we found ourselves riding on the slippery and bulbous
bearing portion of the pedal rather than
the safer pin-littered portion more than
we would have liked. While the pedal’s
shape is adequately concave when your
shoe is on the platform, riders who tend
to move around on the pedals will prefer
a traditional shape without an oversized
bearing right next to the crank.
Overall, aside from our minor issues with the shape of the pedal near the spindle, the Flat Irons have a low weight and thin profile that
will make other flat-pedal riders jealous.
While we wish the oversized bearing
next to the crankarm were less obtrusive, we can’t help but recommend these
pedals for riders looking for the most in
rock clearance, weight savings and overall performance.
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