About a year ago, we put Ergon PC2 pedals on Friedel’s touring bike.
She’s never been a fan of being ‘clipped in’ with SPD pedals (or anything else that fixes your feet to the pedals) but did want some grip. The Ergon PC2s seemed like a good compromise.
Their sandpaper surface is supposed to help keep your feet in place, without the hassle of remembering to clip out at red lights and other obstacles.
After a few months of trying these pedals, our verdict is mixed.
On the upside, we do like the wide profile of the pedals. They’re comfortable, supportive and still look surprisingly new – despite several months of commuting and touring in a relatively wet Dutch climate.
We also found the grip to be decent; not outstanding, but certainly better than the average, flat platform pedal.
There are some downsides, however. The main disadvantage is the hefty $80 U.S. pricetag.
Eric, who runs a popular bike touring store in Amsterdam, noted some other disadvantages after testing the pedals with his wife Carla in South America. He wrote:
The Ergon PC2 is a platform pedal and seems ideal for people who find it frightening to be ‘clicked in’. The surface is made of a type of sandpaper (developed in cooperation with 3M) that gives the feet a good grip. Due to the large surface, there’s a good pressure distribution and a raised edge ensures that you don’t hit the crank arms. However, Carla slipped occasionally from these pedals and that never happened with her previous PD-MX30 pedals from Shimano. Also, after 3,000km there was already play in the axles. Overall, this is a pedal that we won’t continue to sell at the Vakantiefietser.
The PD MX30 pedals from Shimano, favoured by Carla & Eric over the Ergon PC2s.
We’ll Keep Them But…
We personally plan to keep using the Ergon PC2 pedals for now.
If nothing else, they’re a neat commuting solution that offers a bit of grip but won’t damage fancy work shoes. For touring, we don’t have any major complaints but then we have only tested them on the relatively tame bike paths of the Netherlands.
If we were to go further afield, especially on unpaved surfaces, we’d likely replace them with cleated pedals.
21st September 2012 at 3:51 pm #
I’ve also been testing these pedals out for the last three or four months on my commuter, trying to decide if using them for my upcoming bike tour to South America would be good. I like them for bike commuting, but I think for my tour I’ll still use my SPDs. My main complaint is that they don’t seem to reset to flat as well as other pedals, so sometimes I have to flip the pedal with my toe after stopping at an intersection. However, I do love that I can ride to work in my flip flops with no problems on these, and my feet don’t slip at all!
22nd September 2012 at 2:48 am #
I’m currently riding across North Carolina, and I’m using Ergon PC2s on my mtb/xtracycle. During a few days of constant, heavy rain, all my waterproof socks had gotten water in them. I was able to keep riding in my cheap flip flops due to the wide, grippy surface of the Ergons.
Overall, I feel that my shoes are well-connected to the pedal surface. Every so often a foot may slip from the pedal during a clunky gear shift.
The Ergons have been great for my car-free lifestyle, as I don’t have to think about what shoes I’m wearing when I hop on my bike.
Thanks for following up with this review. Come to think of it, I first learned about the Ergon pedals by reading your short touring handbook!
22nd September 2012 at 1:06 pm #
Thank you for the write-up. We too have been using the PC2 pedals for a few months now. I pretty much agree that they are nice for daily commuting, but not very good for touring. Petra is still using her’s for daily commuting. However, I am now trying out Shimano’s PD-A530 pedals and I am thinking they are the way to go all around. On one side it’s flat and on the other you can clip in. Prior to trying PC2 and PD-A530 pedals we rode for years using Crank Brother pedals and they’re nice pedals, but for touring I am starting to think the PD-A530s are the way to go.
ron & petra
22nd September 2012 at 11:13 pm #
“Power Grips”. It’s just the right thing to do, city or tour. Throw away those silly shoes and cleats.
And while you’re at it get some wiiide MKS Lambda Platform pedals and spread your feet out like layin’ in a hammock on a lazy day:
You’ll probably want the longer version of the Power Grips (there are two versions) with these to fit bulkier shoes on the wide pedals.
23rd September 2012 at 6:30 am #
We did try Power Grips – in fact, they were the first system that I tried when we started our world trip. I didn’t like them – though I know many people swear by them. I don’t think you should have to struggle with a pedal or ‘think’ about it too much. Putting your feet on the pedal should be intuitive but with the Powergrips the strap always seemed to be the wrong side down, so I had to look down and flip the pedal around. Also, a few days after using them I developed tendinitis in my ankles. I think the PowerGrips may have been a contributing factor. I also have very wide feet, and I see some complaints from people with wide feet, so maybe that was the problem. In any case, they weren’t for me but – all of that said – I know that many people love them! So maybe it’s just me…
26th September 2012 at 9:26 pm #
Thanks for the review, I was curious about those pedals. I’ve been looking for platform pedals and I tried the Shimano’s Eric mentioned. The first set I had to return after 800 kilometers. There was a noise and the bearings had gotten some space in it. I now have used the second set for about 2500 kilometers and they still work fine for me. The grip is ok and the platform helps to divide the pressure under the foot. And they are a bit cheaper than the Ergons. But, reading your results, I think I will try the Ergons when the Shimano’s fail me.
5th October 2012 at 1:58 pm #
I am also not satisfied with PC2 pedals – after 6000 km they are clicking (there is a play on the axle) and I am slipping off whenever they get wet or dusty, especially with my sandals on. We are in Kazakhstan now and as soon as we get to China I will buy something else.
3rd June 2013 at 1:55 pm #
I would like to address the point of the play in the axles experienced by Eric. Some early versions of the pedals did experence premature play. It is unfortunately that Eric tested a set this applies to.
The axles bearing setup was updated as a running change, and I am confident that were he to test them again, there would be no such play apparent.
3rd June 2013 at 1:55 pm #
Oh I work for Ergon, by the way.
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