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Crankbrothers Mallet 3 Clipless Pedals

Average User Rating: (Very Good)
Crankbrothers Mallet 3
 Crankbrothers Mallet 3 Clipless Pedals  Crankbrothers Mallet 3 Clipless Pedals
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Classic Clipless Pedal

Rating: Featured Member Review
The Good:

mudclearance, pedalbody and pins, service kit available

The Bad:

brass cleats, inner plastic pedal body

Overall Review:

First, I have been riding clipless pedals for a few years and I also used Shimanos SPD system for years on my XC-Bike and for a short while on my Enduro and DH bike.

When it comes to DH or Enduro riding I'm a big fan of Crankbrothers clipless system. If you aren't and your mind is made up it's probably pointless to read on.

Riding them:

Clipping in is a very different feeling from Shimano, it feels much more 'loose' and you get a lot of float. You shouldn't worry, though, as long as you have a fresh set of cleats the pedal holds on to your foot pretty secure. When you install the cleats under your shoes you can choose between a 15° or 20° release angle. I always use the 15° angle and would advise any beginner to do so, I have read on the internet that there are people who use the 20° angle, but I have never tried it, nor do most of my buddies. I can't think of a situation where I accidentally clipped out and thought: "a 20° release angle would have prevented that!", but I rarely clip out accidentally, never with fresh cleats. What did happen is, that a rock hit the underside of the pedal, which released the mechanism. This is a unique feature of the CB system, but it happened a maximum of 3-4 times in the last 4 years.

I like that you can actually ride unclipped for quite a while without losing the pedal. Obviously you can't pull up on the bike, but there's been a lot of occasions over the years where I failed to clip in before a nasty root section and managed to get through thanks to the pedal body and clipped in when things calmed down a bit. This is especially important when you're racing, you get faster and more precise with clipping in, but when you're trying to be on the edge and loose, these things happen. The pedal body and pins is the main reason I prefer CB pedals over Shimano. The pins allow a wide range of adjustment, with my old Shimano shoes they were about 3mm above the pedal body so they would barely touch the shoe , with my newer 5.10 Impact VXi or Specialized shoes they are only about 1mm above the body. With the Shimano shoes my foot was very close to the crank, even with the cleat all the way inboard, with the cranks level it was very narrow to clip the back foot out, it worked but sometimes I would struggle for a moment. With the 5.10 and Specialized shoes this is no problem at all.

The mudclearance is excellent and better than most other pedals, in clay like mud they can stop working, but if you stomp on the pedal a couple of times even the stickiest mud should just drop through the pedal.


My biggest criticism is, that the brass cleats are very soft and expensive, compared to Shimano. There are two DH races on consecutive weekends I did the last two years, where you have to push your bike for about 1-200m on a gravel road to get to the start. After those races my cleats are pretty much ready for replacement. If you don't walk much you can probably get through more than half a season.

As with any CB product, the pedals aren't the toughest. That said, the pair of Mallet 3 pedals on my Enduro bike goes into its 4th season now. They look very beaten up, 2-3 pins were ripped out of the inner plastic body and there is some play on the axle, but they still work like a treat. You should pull them apart and regrease more than once a season and there's also a service kit with new seals and bearings for a very fair price available. You shouldn't wait too long to replace the bearings or they will wear out the axle. So if you treat them well they aren't unreliable at all.

I also used to have a pair of Mallet 2 pedals and actually preferred them as the bushing didn't wear out as fast and needed less servicing, so I encourage to give those a trie.

I would prefer a longer axle (Q factor), like the Mallet DH has, but with the smaller body of the Mallet 3. The Mallet E comes close to that I think, so I'll give those a try when my Mallet 3 pedals fail, but they're still going strong.

Awesome Pedal!

The Good:

Weight, Colour , Easy in Easy out.

The Bad:

Freespin , Cliping mech to close to the crank.

Overall Review:

These are the first "clip" style pedals I have used, and i don't think i'll ever go back to flats.

Decent Pedal

The Good:

Weight, spin freely and overall quality

The Bad:

Traction pins and engagement

Overall Review:

This is my first attempt at riding clipless and I traded in my brother's old pedals for a set of these thru the deal Crank Bros was doing at the time - trade in any clipless pedal and get any set of their high end pedals for half price.

I enjoy being clipped in for some aspects of riding and I can feel that they make pedaling a bit easier on the rougher sections where a foot would be hard to keep on platform pedals. I love the size of these with a full platform as they make clipping in easy. I found that sometimes I don't feel all the way clipped in and I have to unclip and re-clip to make sure I'm all the way in there. That is pretty annoying when you're riding and have to up-clip/re-clip when you're really fully engaged and just don't feel it. The traction pins, for me are pointless; even when backed out all the way they still don't engage my shoe and help out with traction. Another reason why I shun pedals with set screws as traction pins-they fill with dirt and have to be backed out almost until there is no thread engagement with the pedal and they fall out or tear the pedal threads out when struck. I also discovered that when you corner aggressively or whip your bike sideways off jumps, you're feet pop out and that is a nightmare and not very cool at all. It could be me and my lack of clipless pedal ninja skills, but it happens more than I care to enjoy. Unclipping to dab a foot down is fairly easy and not an issue and the color matches my bike to keep my whip lookin as fresh as possible, as the kids say. I'm not saying these pedals are crap, but for me and my lack of clipless skills, they are not a high scorer. The quality is outstanding and I have had no issues or problems with these pedals structurally. I just really enjoying platform pedals and would rather ride unclipped.


Product Crankbrothers Mallet 3 Clipless Pedals
Riding Type Enduro / All-Mountain, Trail
Pedal Platform Size Large Platform
Pedal Platform Details All aluminum platform
6 adjustable pins per side for grip
Body Material Body material: 6061-T6 aluminum
Wing material: 17-4PH stainless steel
Spring material: 300 series stainless steel
Bearing Type Inner: Igus LL-Glide Bearing
Outer: Enduro Cartridge Bearing
Spindle Spec Forged SCM 435 Chromoly Steel
Cleat Type Premium brass cleats with shims included
Float 6° float; 15° or 20° release angle
Colors Raw, Red
Weight 1 lb 1.6 oz (499 g)
Miscellaneous 4-sided entry for superior mud shedding
Customizable float & release angle
Double seal system
Q-Factor: 52mm
Warranty: 5 Years
Price $139
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