Long term readers of this little corner of the internet will recall that I’ve written several times about the DMR Vault flat pedals. They’ve been a long time favourite of mine and I’ve ridden them for what seems like forever. They’ve been really solid and even survived what I still think was my most dramatic crash. The left one was torn from the thread of the crank arm after the arm itself had twisted. Bombproof.

More recently, I’ve changed pedals though, deciding to ditch the Vaults. I’m still on flats but my Bronson now has a set of Burgtec Penthouse MK5 pedals being the choice of platform. I mostly bought them because of recommendations from a friend who has been using the Penthouse for some time and speaks very highly of them. There was, of course, a need for pedals on the Lost Lad I recently purchased and the Vaults, whilst being a little unorthodox on a gravel bike, were my choice. The DMRs have been fantastic but, after 4 years they’ve got some battle wounds. Some of the pin holes have lost their thread so no pins can be replaced. Whilst the slight difference in grip isn’t an issue on the gravel bike, I’ve noticed it a couple of times when the pedals were still on the mountain bike.

Straight out of the box, the most noticeable difference was the Burgtec’s shape and low profile. The little step in the shape makes the Burgtecs appear thinner than they actually are. There’s actually only 2mm difference between them and the Vaults so I can hardly say I’ve noticed it. The shape feels different underfoot too. I’m by no means an expert so I can’t put my finger on what’s different, just that they do feel different. Most noticeable of all is the narrowness of the Burgtecs. The Vaults seemed to have a little more room in the width. When I checked the numbers, I was surprised to see that the difference is 5mm. They feel more compact than that.

To me, the feeling of compact pedals is a good thing. The Burgtecs have enough room on them to place my feet comfortably, and without worrying, but don’t poke out beyond my shoes too much. I like that. Subconsciously, I think it helps with my cornering or rocky trails where I perhaps believe I’m less likely to strike the outside of the pedal. The numbers being so marginally different suggest it’s placebo, but still…

What is more noticeable is the grip. The fresh pins make it feel like, well, I’m back on pedals offering full grip. Almost like when you get a fresh pair of Five Tens and they grip so nicely. I guess that’s what happens when you’re riding on new, grippy pedals. So far, after a month of testing, I’ve not slipped a pedal once. I’ve had more problems with putting my foot in the wrong place and not being able to shift. I suppose that’s a good thing really.

Ultimately, the Burgtec Penthouse MK5 are pretty grippy pedals that look great and are low profile enough to avoid collisions with most of the rocks on the trails. Otherwise, they’re pedals. There are cheaper alternatives out there. I am pleased that I bought these though. So far, they’ve not been a mistake, even coming from Vaults.

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