Time has come out with a new set of mountain bike pedals for 2011, the X-Roc S, with a stable platform for aggressive riders. The X-Roc is slightly smaller that the Z-Control pedals I tested a couple years ago but that’s not to say they’re any less capable.
Unlike the Z-Control pedals, the X-Rocs feature a composite body designed with stainless steel plates to protect the important bits and to provide an area to limit wear. The body is also designed with integrated teeth to better grip the pedals when you’re un-clipped. And when the weather takes a turn for the worse, ample ports in the pedal allow crud to flow out, reducing the chances of clogging the cleat area and possibly preventing you from clipping in.
When you’re clipped in you have about 6mm of lateral float and ±5° degrees of adjustable angular float. Depending on how you set the cleats you could have either a 13° degree or 18° degree release angle. A total weight of 422 grams is reasonable for a pedal that comes with a full length chromed steel axle, composite body, and the clipless mechanism.
Installing the X-Rocs on my AM / trail bike I found that these pedals offer a real improvement over the Z-Control pedals. The X-Roc pedals feature the same reliable clip in feeling as the ATAC XS but it was much easier to find the pedal with my foot after popping out. Adjusting the tension is easy with a standard screwdriver through a port on the side of the pedal. There are a few tension settings to allow you to tune the tension for your particular style of riding. I tend to run mine second from soft.
I ran the X-Roc pedals on my DH bike to see how they felt with the Mavic Alpine XL shoes and I gotta say they worked well and held on tight. I was afraid some of the larger rock gardens would wreak havoc on the composite pedal body but after more than a few hits, everything still works just fine.
For about $135 you get everything in a neat package with cleats and pedals. The instructions are easy enough to follow and will take about 20 minutes to get them on your bike and cleats on your shoes. If you are replacing existing cleats, do yourself a favor and clean the old screw holes very well and use some penetrating oil to loosen up the old hardware. You may want to even consider leaving the penetrating oil overnight.
I would like to thank the folks at Time for sending down the X-ROC S pedals for review.