Raceface Aeffect Pedal review - a little chunky but an accessible entry to full metal flat pedals
For what they lack in elegance they make up for with robust, dependable durability
The Raceface Aeffect Pedal is reasonably priced and has proved highly robust, putting up with rock strikes and the odd clang with some errant street furniture. The pedals feature a full metal construction with replaceable pins and a fully serviceable axle for long term use. There are slimmer and more attractive alternatives, but these are more expensive. Likewise, there are cheaper options, but these utilise a plastic body and aren’t as durable. In all, the Raceface Aeffect Pedal is a dependable mid-market option that gets the job done.
Raceface’s Aeffect Pedal sits at around the middle of the brand’s range. It offers much of the adjustability and the durability of more expensive models, but at a mid-market price and with a slight weight penalty.
Whether it’s gravel riding and bikepacking you have in mind or simply spinning around the city streets, the Aeffect Pedal is a robust and dependable option. Although if it is urban riding you’re planning on, you will probably want to wind in the pins a little so as to preserve the soles of your shoes - as is the case with the majority of the best flat pedals for gravel and urban cycling.
Raceface Aeffect: construction
The Aeffect Pedal has a small platform area compared to some of the most aggressive trail pedals. This might be a limitation for mountain biking, but for gravel and urban use, the Aeffect Pedal hits the balance spot on for support and not being too cumbersome, just like many of the best commuter bike pedals.
There are 10 pins per side and these have an allen socket on their reverse side so that it’s protected from rock strikes, debris, and just general wear from your shoes. Should the allen socket be unusable for some reason, the pins themselves are hexagonal and can be removed using a small spanner.
The pedal body itself is about 17mm thick, which is on the chunkier side at this price point. The pedal axle is pretty easy to access, with that chunky socket for an allen key on the outer side and not requiring any more specialist tools.
Raceface Aeffect: the ride
As mentioned, that pedal platform, though small in mountain biking terms, was plenty supportive for rides of up to seven hours on a bikepacking trip - and countless smaller forays around trails and towns.
For gravel riding, the grip provided by the pins was perfectly sufficient, while for pure urban use, it would be advisable winding out the pins and using the provided shims to reduce the pins’ height a little bit, to better preserve your shoes.
Given the level of grip at their most aggressive setting, I can see why some mountain bikers might wish for a little more, but even as they are, on a gravel bike it really won’t be the pedals that are the limiting factor on your singletrack speed.
Throughout my time using these pedals they proved to be as robust as they look and feel, fending off rock strikes and the odd clang into some street furniture without skipping a beat. The chunky build probably helps with this, although it does look a little out of place on certain, more svelte gravel bikes - and there are other pedal systems out there for this price point that are a little slimmer.
Raceface Aeffect: value and conclusion
At $119.99 / £99.95, the Raceface Aeffect Pedal comes in at about the price you would expect for a full metal flat pedal with replaceable pins. It undercuts the Crankbrothers Stamp 3 Small somewhat, which comes in at $139.99 / £139.99, but then the Crankbrothers Stamp 3 Small pedals are rather slimmer and look a little smarter than the Raceface Aeffect Pedals - if you care about such things.
Otherwise you can pick up a set of plastic bodied pedals for just $32.40 / £20.00 in the form of DMR’s V6 flat pedals, which are a good option for a townie bike or more casual off road riding.
Overall, the Raceface Aeffect Pedal is reasonably priced for a full metal construction with removable pins and has proved to be quite robust. There are slimmer and more attractive options if you’re willing to spend a little more, such as the Crankbrothers Stamp 3 Small, and there are cheaper plastic options if you’d rather not spend so much on a set of flat pedals.
But if you find yourself falling between those two ends of the spectrum, the Raceface Affect is a durable and dependable option - if a little chunky.
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After winning the 2019 National Single-Speed Cross-Country Mountain Biking Championships and claiming the plushie unicorn (true story), Stefan swapped the flat-bars for drop-bars and has never looked back.
Since then, he’s earnt his 2ⁿᵈ cat racing licence in his first season racing as a third, completed the South Downs Double in under 20 hours and Everested in under 12.
But his favourite rides are multiday bikepacking trips, with all the huge amount of cycling tech and long days spent exploring new roads and trails - as well as histories and cultures. Most recently, he’s spent two weeks riding from Budapest into the mountains of Slovakia.
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