Hi guys, I ordered a set of the Z Team HK Pedals on 03.27.2019 and they arrived 04.07.2019. The communication with the seller was great, I ordered via PayPal, got a tracking number and I think it was UPS that delivered them. I've been riding on them for several weeks now to get a full review going with pros / cons, I also needed to try them with different shoes because the angled ends of the pedals changed what I would want to wear while riding it. For anyone wondering: I paid for these pedals with my own money, I'm not affiliated with Z Team HK, and I'm a US size 10 in shoes!
First impressions, straight out of the box the pedals are nice and thick stainless steel with a grippy matte finish. Included are two strong magnets to swap out the stock magnets, allen wrench, extended pedal padding, and screws (Loctite for the screws not included). When I ordered it there were no instructions / videos online on how to put everything together but I figured it out pretty easily from pictures, since then they've put up an instructional video on Facebook.
The Z Team HK guys decided to laser engrave their logo on the top of the pedal. As of right now they don't offer any other styles / colors. If you won't like how it looks you can always stick sandpaper on top of it. I sprayed mine with Truck Bed Liner then applied the screws in with blue Loctite.
After installing them I couldn't get my new pedals to close properly, it looks like the extended ends hit against the Lower Protective Pads. A couple of quick passes with an Exacto knife created an opening for them and the pedals now fit perfectly. And if you guys haven't figured it out by now, my Z10 is a daily commuter that's been bashed a few times so I wasn't too worried about the overall aesthetics of things. However, if you want to keep your Z10 looking nice, be aware the Lower Protective Pads will interfere with the pedals. I spoke with Z Team HK and they are aware this was an issue but I couldn't find mentions of it anywhere on their pages.
Converse, Vans, Skate Shoe Ride Review:
This part I'm going to review the pedals when using shoes with flat outsoles that were mostly flexible. The pedal pins really lock the shoe in place horizontally, there is no slipping effect when carving or hard turning which was really confidence inspiring and I definitely was turning at higher speeds I would normally do. The extended pedals create a concave effect, I played with my foot positioning a few times and decided to keep them dead center on the pedals. This helped lock my foot in place and the extended pedals also help eliminate some foot fatigue during the longer rides because my foot was no longer hanging off the front or back ends. Now for the CONS: installing these pedals required you the remove the rubber bits that came on the stock pedal and I did not realize how much road cushioning those little bits provided (I think I understand why people like the Inmotion V10F Pedals now haha). Going over speed bumps and some large cracks made me almost want to launch off of the pedals, so even though these things added horizontal grip via the pins/screws some of the stock pedal's vertical "grip" was lost. With my foot perfectly centered I actually found it kind of harder to slip my feet around the pedals to change positions, you now have to lift off a bit to move your foot. I didn't realize how much I would reposition my feet on a ride until I was unable to do it normally. So although my foot can be kept at a comfortable position for a longer period of time, my position options were now more limited.
Moto, Boot, Hard Outsole Shoe Ride Review:
Now I'm moving onto shoes with a mid-ankle, relatively flat outsole, but are more rigid / not flexible mainly due to additional protection like CE Certification. I like wearing these shoes because they provide more of a cushion without sacrificing stability on the stock pedals. Also, these are well padded around the ankles and are my go-to when I'm trying something adventurous like going uphill offroad and such. With the new pedals installed there wasn't much of an impact on the cushioning like I had felt with the skate shoes. The additional horizontal grip is still there as well. However, these shoes are bulkier than my other shoes and when positioned dead center on the pedal for an extended amount of time my foot got tired more quickly. I tried to reposition my feet because on the stock pedal I usually have my feet poking out the front more with these kind of shoes, but with the pedal extensions they got in the way and made me a bit more unbalanced. Trying to move my feet further back had me hit the back extender, I couldn't find an ideal foot position after several rides. These shoes were not the best or most comfortable on the stock pedal, and with the extended pedal the effects are compounded. Final Thoughts:
The pedals provided cornering benefits on flat surfaces using skate shoes. You won't fear slipping off your pedals from leaning too hard on a turn, and we all know how hard turning on the Z10 can be. The extended bit allowed me to go a bit further before having to reposition my foot due to fatigue. I rode for about 3 weeks now and I would be happier if there was an extended pedal version that was flat at the ends instead of angled. I think that angled bit sacrifices foot position variety for handling gain. The added harshness of the ride could be offset with some soft/cushioned deck tape I think but will need more experimenting to find out. If you want that added grip feel the screws provide you can try buying Mountain Bike Pedal Screws and using those in place of the stock screws, you'll get a nice balance of grip / comfort and not lose any of the foot positions. I can see some people REALLY liking these pedals though for that extra grip alone. For anyone wondering if the pins would damage the bottom of your shoes, they usually don't. People have been riding mountain bikes with pins on pedals for a while now and they're perfectly fine. I only noticed a few semi-permanent indentations on my Alpinestars moto shoe, but that shoe has an exceptionally soft outsole compared to everything else I own.