Many mountain bikers swear by the Crankbrothers Mallet E LS pedals because of their wide stance and the free floating feeling. But can they also make sense on a gravel bike? We’ve put them to the test to find out for whom it might make sense to equip their gravel bike with MTB pedals.
The Crankbrothers Mallet E LS are mountain bike pedals with large cages. They won the pedal group test of our sister magazine ENDURO, which is why we had to test them for gravel bikes too. Besides that, many pro enduro riders rely on these pedals, and the LS (Long Spindle) version tested here – featuring longer axles and thus a wider Q-factor – is a popular choice amongst them.
Trail performance for gravel bikes: the Crankbrothers Mallet E LS
The clipless mechanism of the € 179.99 Mallet E LS is the same as that of the Crankbrothers Candy 7, so the feeling you have when riding with these pedals is very similar. For more information about the customisable float, release angle and pedal footprint, simply check out our review of the Candy 7.
Due to the large cages of the Mallet E LS pedals, they provide a very secure footing while the adjustable height of the six pins and traction pads on each side allows you to adjust the grip to suit your preference. Unfortunately, however, the pins get screwed in from the top, which means that they’re very difficult to adjust or replace if there’s dirt in them or if they’ve gotten damaged from striking the ground. At 428 g, the pedals are quite heavy, too, though they’re still significantly lighter than the 474 g Acros pedals, which are the heaviest on test. Due to the long axles, resulting in a 57 mm Q-factor, your stance on the pedals is relatively wide, which instils you with confidence on the descents, though it might feel unusual at first and comes at the cost of efficiency. That said, they’re also available with shorter spindles, giving them the same 52 mm Q-factor as the Candy model.
The large platforms of the Mallet E LS pedals make them relatively comfortable to use with casual shoes, though the large spindle in the centre gets in the way, unlike on the Acros. They’re a great choice for adventurers who tend to ride in rough terrain and occasionally have to walk. When combined with clipless shoes with soft soles, you’ll be prepared to face any challenge. The excellent self-cleaning of the pedals is a good trait to have in this case, too, allowing you to click in even when your shoes are covered in mud.
|Brand||Model||Weight||Price||System||Float||Release angle||Q-factor||Stack height|
|Crankbrothers||Mallet E LS||428 g||€ 179.99||Crankbrothers||0°/6°||10°/15°||57 mm||15.5 mm|
Our conclusion on the Crankbrothers Mallet E LS
Thanks to their big cages, the Crankbrothers Mallet E LS pedals are very practical in day to day use, though they also make faithful companions on hike-a-bike adventures due to their excellent self-cleaning characteristics. Thanks to the adjustable height of the pins and traction pads, you can also adjust the grip to suit your preferences. Due to the long axles, however, the pedals are better suited to trail use, offering more stability than pedalling efficiency.
- secure footing even with casual shoes
- excellent self-cleaning
- pin height difficult to adjust when dirty or damaged
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Words: Simon Kohler Photos: Simon Hänle