Look PP396 Road Pedals versus Road Look A3.1 Pedals



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Dario Wolfish

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Now that I have my new Trek 5200, I need to buy road pedals. I saw at an online store that the Look
PP396 pedals are on sale for 100 dollars. The site claims that the retail price of these pedals is
200 dollars.

The Look A3.1 road pedals are also 100 dollars.

What exactly is the difference between these pedals? Which of these pedals do you recommend?

I have large feet (13 5E) and would like a simple and quick release.

I am new to this cycling madness and would like your advice Please email me or post your
opinion here.

As always, thanks so much for your help.

Sincerely,

Dario
 
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Mike Krueger

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<< Now that I have my new Trek 5200, I need to buy road pedals. I saw at an online store that the
Look PP396 pedals are on sale for 100 dollars. The site claims that the retail price of these pedals
is 200 dollars. The Look A3.1 road pedals are also 100 dollars. What exactly is the difference
between these pedals? Which of these pedals do you recommend? >>

The best LOOK pedals are the old Shimano PD-7401 (Dura Ace). They are all metal, and have a superior
axle/bearing design. Long discontinued, but available occasionally on eBay, both NOS and used. The
main difference between the various LOOK brand models, other than cosmetics, is the release tension
and the gimmicks. The rotation adjustment dial on the back of the PP396 doesn't do much-that's a
gimmick. Avoid it, and there's one less thing to break. Cconsider the release tension when choosing
models. The lower end pedals have release tension settings from 8-12, and the "pro" pedals go from
11 to 16. A powerful rider might need the higher settings in a sprint, while a novice might find it
safer and easier to clip in and out at the low settings. You can find all this info on the Total
Cycling site, which sells the PP396 for $65 and the
A3.1 for $62 (plus shipping from the UK).

http://www.totalcycling.com/
 
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Pete Biggs

Guest
Dario Wolfish wrote:
> Now that I have my new Trek 5200, I need to buy road pedals. I saw at an online store that the
> Look PP396 pedals are on sale for 100 dollars. The site claims that the retail price of these
> pedals is 200 dollars.
>
> The Look A3.1 road pedals are also 100 dollars.
>
> What exactly is the difference between these pedals?

The specs are at: http://www.lookcycle.com/english/catalogue/2003/pedales.htm

Most importantly, the A3.1 does not have adjustable float. PP396 offers , 3, 6 or 9 degrees - so you
can tune to what suits or get extra. You'll just get ~6 with A3.1 with red cleats (or zero with
black). I use PP396 with the '9' setting which helps relax my ankles and knees.

A3.1 tension range is lower - but the upper end is bound to be fine for most riders. Even the
minimum retension-force setting of the PP396 might seem alarming at first but you'll quickly get
used to it, and releasing will get easier as the cleats and pedals wear (and I don't mean when
worn-out; just worn a bit). I manage them in central London (among other places), so if they're
practical enough for that, they're practical enough for just about any road riding - if you're
generally confident on a bike.

I've not tried the A3.1 but one small improvement (in this and other new models) appears to be a
better design of the surface where the little cleat rubber foot contacts the pedal. I find there
sometimes can be excessive float-friction with the 396, especially when gunked up with dirt or
grease (too much grease disoves the rubber!).

> Which of these pedals do you recommend?

PP396.

> I have large feet (13 5E) and would like a simple and quick release.

Size of feet is irrelevant to this choice, and both will release quickly and simply by turning heel
outwards by a few degrees.

~PB
 
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