Sunday, August 12

Wellgo LU987B pedals, and update on the Brooks B67 saddle

 As followers of this blog will know, I have two bikes, a Trek mixte which is at least 20 years old, and a Koga Traveller, which I bought last year. I had never even given a thought to the pedals on the Trek, which shows that they suited me fine.  These are the ones -

(That is the garage floor, not carpet....)

They are still giving excellent service, although now that I come to examine them more closely they are definitely showing signs of wear. They measure 110mm (across from where the pedal buts up to the crank) x 78mm  (call that depth).

The pedals that came with the Koga are these -

They are Koga Sole Mate pedals, and currently cost £38 at Cyclesense, where I bought the bike. They measure 95 x 88mm, so are considerably narrower than the Trek pedals, and not as deep.

I did notice a difference in the feel of these pedals, regarding how stable I felt on the bike, so I changed them. I had hoped to find something very like the ones on my Trek, but couldn't find anything when I searched online. (I also discovered that there was a huge variety of types of pedal, which, as usual when I start thinking about buying something new for my bike, meant the search took me ages as there was so much to learn!! "A whole new world......" as the song says.) All of what I would call the "normal" pedals, even ones labelled as touring pedals, and whatever the price, were narrower. I then decided to see what my local bike shop had, as for all the advantages of the internet there is nothing quite like seeing products in the flesh. I took the measurements of the Trek pedals with me and as these el cheapo Raleigh (but made by Wellgo) pedals matched up fairly well I bought them -

The measurement from the crank was 110mm across, the same as the Trek ones, so I thought they'd be fine. Local bike shop comes up trumps again, I thought. However, as you can see, they have rounded corners, and get narrower from the inside edge to the outer edge, and this made a big difference in how they felt under my feet, compared to the Trek ones. I just felt they weren't big enough. 

Some time later I came to the conclusion that they gave little advantage over the Koga ones size wise, so I thought I might as well be vain and have the more expensive looking ones back on the bike! But I really wasn't happy with them, and when one day not long afterwards I rode the bike in the rain and found that my feet were slipping so much that I only just managed to get where I was going a few miles away, I thought that there just must be something better and started looking again. Perhaps this was the first time I'd ridden this bike in the rain, as I certainly hadn't noticed this slipping before. That made me think I really needed to get some that were bigger and also more grippy.

So, after searching once again on the internet, I came across this blog post by  The Everyday Cyclist. where he reviews the Wellgo LU987. Combined with other reading that convinced me to try some. Here they are -

They are Wellgo LU987B flat pedals. I can't remember what the differences are between the LU987, or the LU 987U, and these, but suffice it to say that I am very happy with my purchase.

Husband had a little bit of a mock, as he thinks I have changed quite a lot of things on my Koga, and doesn't quite get why....... He has changed nothing on his beloved mountain bike since he bought it over the internet from Germany, whilst I have changed the handlebars, the saddle, and now the pedals, on this bike. However, like a boy with his toys, he was very keen to put them on for me once they came, so I let him even though this is one of the things I have learnt to do. 

What a difference!!! These pedals have made a HUGE difference. When I was on my 5 day trip back at the end of June, I was so glad I had bought these pedals. I feel much more stable on them due to the increased size and the fact that they are more grippy. The size is 112mm across x 104mm depth, so they are in fact only 2mm wider than my Trek pedals but are quite a bit deeper. Interestingly, I bought them where the link takes you at £17.75, but they can cost much more elsewhere, e.g. £29.99 at SJS Cycles. I don't know why I didn't buy the very similar, and cheaper, Wellgo LU987U model although it was possibly because it might not have been available in black at the time. 

It occurred to me during my research that logically foot size must make a difference to what size pedal people prefer - one size cannot fit all - and then lo and behold I find that there are such things as size specific pedals, where you can get the model of pedal you want in more than one size, although they are pretty expensive. Incidentally my own feet are UK size 7 and narrow. Both length and width of foot will make a difference.

Brooks saddle update

So, a happy ending to the pedal tale, despite Husband's mocking. The Brooks saddle tale (I'm sure there's a pun in there!) is also going along very happily indeed. I have now ridden 408.13 miles on it (for a while I gave up such preciseness and started rounding my mileages up or down but then I thought - no, why should I? If I want to be precise I will!). When researching them someone said you needed to do 600 miles to break one in so I'm roughly two thirds of the way there, but actually other people say that they are comfortable from the word go and just get better. I would say that mine was uncomfortable at the beginning, but it didn't take long to get much better once I'd got the position correct for me, and it is now indeed getting better and better.

On my June trip, I rode for 4 days out of the 5, doing about 35 - 45 miles a day, during very hot weather, and I only wore padded undershorts for one of those days. I recently did a 51.74 mile day trip and again did not wear padded undershorts.  I keep looking for dips where my sit bones go, and although I can't really see any yet I think that it has flattened out slightly.