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DMR Vaults

Around Christmas time, I bought a Santa Cruz Bronson. It’s my dream bike and was something I was set on. I weighed up other options, including the amazing bikes from Airdrop, Bird and Orange. I almost went for a British brand just out of principle, but something kept me returning to the Santa Cruz website and drooling over a Bronson. So that’s what I bought.

As you’ll know, new bikes don’t come with pedals. I’ve never ridden clipped in, and it wasn’t something I wanted to get into (not yet at any rate) so I pondered a few pedal options. After a bit of reading, watching some review videos, and a lot of comparisons I settled on DMR Vaults.

On my Camber, I’ve run DMR V8s and never had any major issues. They’ve been grippy even in some of the muddiest, wettest and iciest conditions I’ve ridden in. So I had high expectations for the Vaults, even before they arrived.

The Vaults themselves have a much lower profile than the V8s, with a wider platform. I’ve noticed already that I’m getting a lot less rock strikes than when running the V8s. When I took the Vaults out of the box, once they’d arrived, I was pleasantly surprised at their weight. Apparently they weigh just short of 450g, and the magnesium version of the same pedal is a little lighter. Being a true Yorkshireman, I wasn’t going to be shelling out an extra £20 to save 90 grams though so I went with the regular vaults in black and blue.

Out on the trail they’re head and shoulders above the V8s. I’d previously thought I was well set with the V8s and that the Vaults couldn’t be much better. How wrong I was. The Vaults grip loads better, especially with the Five Ten combination. I presume this is to do with subtle shape differences and the size of the pins, though I may be wrong. Don’t get me wrong, at £25 ish, the V8s are a cracking pedal. But the Vaults are better.

Talking of the pins, they’re lethal. My vaults came with the longer side of the pins already installed (though you can unscrew them and flip them if you prefer shorter pins) and, although they’re super grippy, they’re shin eaters. Yesterday’s ride was the first time I’ve slipped a pedal on the Vaults (in over 10 hours on the bike since putting them on) and the result was two ‘viper strikes’ in my shin and an egg shaped swelling today.

All in all, I love the Vaults. They’re comfy, grippy and look mean. The low profile is proving to be a success on rocky trails and I can put up with the odd achy shin from the longer side of the pins. Thoroughly recommended.

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