Bontrager Line Elite Pedal AndrewM
REVIEW

Bontrager Line Elite Plastic Pedals

Words Andrew Major
Photos Andrew Major
Date Jan 22, 2019

Plastic Pedals

After rediscovering flat pedals while managing an injury, I've mostly been riding clipped-in. I have however stayed true to my goal of regularly working on my flat pedal skills and currently I'm spending my rides on a set of Bontrager Line Elite nylon composite pedals. 

The 102mm x 100mm Bontrager Line is like a smaller version of my gold-standard, the 120mm x 118mm Kona Wah Wah 2 Composite, and that's intended 100% as a compliment. 

Bontrager Line Elite Plastic Pedals

Five colours, medium size, 50 USD, nice shape, durable nylon body construction, and great traction. 

Kona Wah Wah 2 Pedals

The plastic Wah Wah 2 is what I measure all flat pedals against now. It has a larger platform than the Line Elite for bigger feet or bigger riding.

Where the Wah Wah has a larger platform and a massive cartridge bearing at the crank arm, the Bontrager Line has a more typical layout and has a slightly smaller footprint. For those with larger feet the Wah Wah is going to offer more support, especially for aggressive DH or Enduro riding, but for riders with smaller feet or, as I understand it, a penchant for dirt jumping the Line Elite will likely be the winner. Where's the cut-off between regular feet and larger feet? I'm a size 43 and I can happily ride either pedal so maybe 43 is the boundary. 

I've heard the odd story from folks that have broken plastic flat pedals in situations where they felt the aluminum equivalent would have held up. Fair enough, Bontrager sells metal editions of these pedals for about twice the outlay. Personally, I can't think of a reason I'd spend more. 

Bontrager Line Elite Plastic Pedals

18.30mm at the narrowest point (on my cheap calipers). 

Bontrager Line Elite Plastic Pedals

Actual footbed to pin contact height is 22.67mm.

Bontrager Line Elite Plastic Pedals

18.77mm at the widest point for a slightly concave shape. 

Based on measurements with my crappy caliper, the Line Elite has a slightly concave shape but compared to say a Chromag Scarab they feel flat. I've been riding them with both Shimano GR7 shoes and Bontrager Line Pro shoes (review pending) and the grip is great, and predictable, without the locked in feeling and knee pain I get from Five Tens. 

On rainy days I get more traction from the larger bodied Wah Wah 2, but I do smoke the smaller Line Elite against fewer objects in tight trail situations, so the trade-off is again going to depend on foot size and preference. 

Bontrager Line Elite Plastic Pedals

Good pedals, good price. Pretty simple really. 

For riders with a strong flat pedal preference, I don't think the Line Elite is going to blow your mind and convert you. At the same time for any rider with small-medium feet, or a focus on dirt jumping, new to the sport or otherwise looking for the best bang for the buck, these are a great option. They come in five colours, they're quiet and durable, the bearings have held up great, and they're a relative bargain. 

bontrager Line

These are your options beyond black. 

You can check out the 50 USD Bontrager Line Elite pedals online at Trek.com and I'd be surprised if every local Trek dealer wasn't carrying them as well. 

Comments

dlopez0811
+1 Andrew Major
David Lopez  - Jan. 22, 2019, 5:15 a.m.

I really want to hear about the marin you are riding with the coil.

Reply

AndrewMajor
+1 David Lopez
Andrew Major  - Jan. 22, 2019, 8:52 a.m.

It’s an old used CCDB that SuspensionWerx rebuilt for me along with a shaft spacer to match the eye-to-eye and stroke that the Rift Zone needs (Metric).

Otherwise it’s a custom built Rift Zone that I use as a parts mule - I’ve test forks, wheels, brakes, bars, drive trains, tires, headsets, cranks, droppers, and etc etc on it.

It’s a fun and very adaptable bike. Works awesome with a coil.

Reply

jitenshakun
+4 cxfahrer Paul Lindsay Andy Eunson Andrew Major
Jitensha Kun  - Jan. 22, 2019, 8:40 a.m.

Plastic pedals are a nice winter option.  They don't conduct the cold as well as metal pedals.

Reply

AndrewMajor
+1 Andy Eunson
Andrew Major  - Jan. 22, 2019, 8:47 a.m.

That’s an interesting point. The difference between flats and clipping-in is profound enough that I know lots of folks who ditch the metal heatsinks on their shoes for winter.

I’ve only been riding plastic this winter so I haven’t done a comparison. 

I notice it a tonne with brake levers - one of my friends brought up carbon bars the other day (I ride aluminum for a few reasons) and I mean grips are thin - makes sense.

Reply

sweaman2
+1 Andrew Major
Sweaman2  - Jan. 23, 2019, 8:47 a.m.

I broke my carbon handle bars on winter fatbike (driving into a garage with bike on NSR rack) so switched to some aluminium ones.  I really noticed the difference in warmth (living in Calgary) so brought some more carbon.

Reply

AndrewMajor
0
Andrew Major  - Jan. 23, 2019, 3:20 p.m.

Very interesting. Do you use lock on grips (hard plastic sleeve) or push-on grips (all rubber)?

I’ve received a few messages to this effect as regards carbon bars (I certainly notice the difference of metal vs. composite brake levers).

What kind of riding are you doing in the winter? (Fat Bike, commuter, etc)

Reply

sweaman2
0
Sweaman2  - Jan. 24, 2019, 8:59 a.m.

Lock-on grips (Ergon) and fat bike riding.

Reply

AndrewMajor
0
Andrew Major  - Jan. 24, 2019, 2:44 p.m.

Thanks! Thinking a bit this week about ‘where carbon counts’

mawa
+1 Andrew Major
MaWa  - Jan. 22, 2019, 12:52 p.m.

I could feel that carbon bars feel warmer in extremely cold temperatures. Switched back to aluminium just because they are way cheaper. 

Never could feel the difference between aluminium and plastic pedals. Five Ten Soles are to thick to feel that. Perhaps with Vans.

Reply

GladePlayboy
+1 Andrew Major
Rob Gretchen  - Jan. 22, 2019, 3:49 p.m.

Hmmm.... may have to give these a try at the shop... composite flats out sell aluminum here 20:1.   Apart from the Chromag Synths which seem to detonate with regularity and have really bendy pins there are few downsides to running composite pedals.

Reply

cxfahrer
0
cxfahrer  - Jan. 23, 2019, midnight

I have size 47-48 (depending on model) FiveTens and ride on plastic pedals for three years now. On the other bike I have DMR Vault for comparison.

The Vaults are the best anyway, the feet feel planted and secure. With the Azonic plastic pedals I could feel the bulge over the axle, and they dont have enough pins. But they could take some serious hits against rocks, which did happen quite offen due to their size. When the bearings were done I replaced them with Chester knockoffs from Chenzhen. These are smaller, and they have even less real pins. Extra pins are easily added using a drill. The Chester knockoffs needed some tlc with the bearings first, but work fine since. No problems with the smaller size. They dont have that bulge, and yes you feel it when temperatures get freezing, even with Freeriders EPS.

Reply

AndrewMajor
0
Andrew Major  - Jan. 24, 2019, 2:46 p.m.

If you get a chance to put one of those size 47/48 feet on the Wah Wah 2 I’d definitely give them a pedal! My big footed friends who have tried them are all two thumbs up.

Reply

Shoreloamer
+1 Andrew Major
Greg Bly  - Jan. 23, 2019, 6:31 a.m.

I luv plastic pedals. I get mine new from North Shore sport and swap for 25$! About 400 grams with replacement pins.

I also have Race Face plastic pedals. The NS SS give my feet more support.

When I scrape rocks. None of that nasty scaping noise and the plastic slides over surfaces.

Cheap as f.ck but they work great!

When or if they fail . Six months on them now. Cheap to replace.

Reply

Gorgebikemechanic
0
Gorgebikemechanic  - Jan. 23, 2019, 8:04 a.m.

Things made out if plastic always break. Plastic pedals belong on department store bikes. Spend a few bucks more and get some pedals made of metal. Less plastic in our environment the better.

Reply

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