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Hustle Avery REMtech Pedal

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Review - Hustle Avery REMtech Magnetic Pedals

This magnetic pedal is the middle ground pedal between clips and flats.

Rating: Vital Review
Review - Hustle Avery REMtech Magnetic Pedals

For decades, riders have been forced to choose between flat pedals and “clipless” pedals. While pedal selection doesn’t elicit the same strength of emotions as the great wheel size debate or the e-bike discussion, many riders feel strongly about which style of pedal is superior. Other folks may be interested in clipping in but are intimidated by the inevitably painful learning curve. Perhaps another rider who has traditionally clipped in wants to try flats but is concerned with sacrificing climbing efficiency. If only there was a halfway house between flat and clipless pedals.

Enter the REMtech Avery pedals from Hustle Bike Labs. The REMtech Avery pedals bridge the gap between flats and clips by borrowing the best properties of each. These pedals use a magnetic connection between a ferrous metal “cleat” and the pedal that offers the efficiency of a clipless pedal while retaining the freedom of movement found in flat pedals. We tested the REMatch system over a six-week period to evaluate the merits of these magnetic pedals.

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Highlights

  • 6061 T6 aluminum body w/ 430 steel spindle
  • Neodymium N52 magnets
  • 95.2mm x 119.8mm footprint (measured)
  • 20.2mm body thickness (measured)
  • 32 x 56mm metal REMPlate (cleat)
  • 773g per pair (measured with pins installed) not including magnetic cleats 95.4g per pair (measured) magnetic REMplate (cleat), hardware, and shims
  • 100-pounds of magnetic pull force per pedal
  • 15 adjustable/removable pins per pedal
  • Sealed bearing/roller bearing sleeve
  • 3-year limited warranty
  • MSRP $219 USD

On the trail, these pedals achieve their goal of offering a hybrid flat/clipless pedal. They truly offer a blend of clipless efficiency and flat pedal freedom. Riders who love clipless pedals might find it far too easy to blow out of the magnetic connection when sprinting out of a corner or punching up a technical climb. Flat pedal fanatics could nit-pick aspects of these pedals as well. That said these pedals don’t seek to replace flats or clips but rather offer some middle ground between the two. We feel Hustle Bike Labs was successful at developing a highly-functional hybrid pedal. Perhaps the most impressive area of performance was seated climbing efficiency. When perched in the saddle, grinding up a long climb, you would swear you were clipped into the Avery pedals. The circular pedal motion of a clipless pedal is beautifully replicated by the magnetic connection.

The Lineup and Initial Impressions

Hustle Bike Labs is a small company out of Gunnison, Colorado that focuses entirely on these REMtech pedals. Hustle’s founder, Craig Payne, designed these pedals after a near-death experience in Moab where the inability to unclip from his traditional clipless pedals sent him off a cliff in a no-fall zone. Luckily for Craig, he was able to cling to the side of a cliff rather than fall into the abyss. Since that terrifyingly memorable day in Moab, Craig set out to create a hybrid pedal that offers the best of both worlds.

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To be sure, the REMtech Avery pedals are not the first attempt at a magnetic pedal. Other manufacturers such as Magped and MagLOCK have been producing similar product. It is safe to say that we have yet to see a mainstream magnetic option.

The “REM” in REMtech stands for Rare Earth Magnets. The Avery pedals use neodymium magnets which Hustle Bike Labs claims to be the strongest type of permanent magnet. Rare Earth Magnets produce a magnetic field that is significantly stronger than ferrite or ceramic magnets. We aren’t scientists and won’t be able to dive any deeper into the calculation of the pull force or the components of neodymium. That information is available on the FAQ page of the manufacturer’s website.

On The Trail

We tested these pedals on our Canfield Lithium on the trails near Wenatchee and Leavenworth, Washington. It was a cool and wet spring and the REMtech pedals saw every condition from mud to snow to dust. We spent the majority of our time grinding up fire roads and descending fast ridgeline trails with some sizeable technical features with consequences. We also hauled these pedals around on some longer backcountry-style rides involving ludicrous amounts of climbing in remote areas.

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On the descent, the REMtech pedals handled exactly as a “hybrid” pedal should. We enjoyed much of the freedom of a flat pedal and some of the connection of a clipless pedal.

Unlike clipping into a clipless pedal, it is extremely easy to hook up with the sweet spot of these pedals. We set the REMplate “cleat” into the most rearward position of the cleat channel in our Giro Chamber II shoes. Simply get the magnetic “cleat” approximately 3-4-inches from the magnetic zone of the pedals, and science does the rest. You can feel the magnetic pull guide the shoe into position. We immediately noticed how there is a very large sweet spot compared to a traditional clipless pedal. You can shift your foot slightly fore/aft and still enjoy a strong connection whereas in a regular clip-in scenario, you are limited to one location to achieve mechanical engagement.

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It should be noted that the REMtech pedals benefit from shoes with the flattest soles possible. Shoes like the Giro Chamber II, Ride Concepts Transition, and FiveTen Hellcat will work better than a trail-riding shoe that might have some rocker to its sole. The large “cleat” or REMplate measures 56mm x 32mm. If your sole has too much rocker the front or rear of the REMplate will protrude from the shoe’s cleat channel a bit. This would be problematic. It should be noted that Hustle Bike Labs includes cleat shims if you need to adjust the magnetic plate to sit flat in the channel of your shoes. Our Giro Chamber II shoes did not require the shim.

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Downhill Performance

When dropping into your favorite downhill it is reasonably easy to adjust your foot. Much like a traditional flat pedal you can simply lift your foot up and set it back down in the correct position. Riders who are used to clipping in might have a bit more trouble. With a traditional mechanical connection, utilizing the pedal’s float means simply turning your foot a few degrees on the pedal body. With the Avery pedal, you are fighting against the pins if you simply try to rotate your foot a little bit. The “lift and reset” motion can take some getting used to.

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This is a good time to touch upon the claimed 100-pounds of pull-force per pedal. Unless you are a physicist, it can be difficult  to conceptualize what 100-pounds of pull feels like. A 100-pound weight is quite heavy so you might imagine that 100-pounds of pull is very strong. We can report that it is not as much pull as you might think. You can simply lift your foot out of the magnetic connection without exerting too much effort. No matter the size and strength of the rider, it doesn’t require significant amounts of effort to disconnect.

Riders who are used to clipping in might struggle for the first few rides with the 100-pounds of pull force. When pinning it through chunk, your foot can bounce off the pedal if you're not paying attention. It is best to ride the REMtech pedals like you would a flat pedal. We feel that in the spectrum of flats and clips, the Avery pedals feel more like flats on the downhills. On our first few rides we found ourselves blowing out of the magnetic connection in undesirable moments such as gapping into a line, hopping over a hole in the trail, or jumping a log. We also blew out of the pedals a handful of times sprinting out of corners. Some of these situations could be pretty dangerous. It should be stated that our tester has primarily ridden clips for well over a decade.

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Riders who are used to riding flat pedals will have a very different downhill experience. The same form and principles required to successfully pilot a flat pedal will put you in an excellent position to maximize the design of the REMtech pedals. The magnetic pull will only enhance how controlled and confident you feel.

Getting out of these pedals in a hurry is much easier than a clipless pedal and only a little more difficult than a flat. If you start to lose your front end in a loose turn or veer off your line, you can quickly drop a foot to prevent things from getting out of hand. The motion required to bail out of these pedals will be more familiar to riders coming from flat pedals. Riders who usually run clips will be inclined to try to turn their feet out of these pedals as you would and with a clip-in situation. With the REMtech pedals, this causes you to fight the pedal pins and hangs you up quite a bit. Riders simply need to lift up and out of the magnetic pull prior to dropping a foot. This is the exact motion of a flat pedal. Yes, you need to fight the pull of the magnet, but that connection isn’t really strong enough to slow you down if you need to get out in a hurry.

These pedals offer removable and adjustable pins. Our Avery pedals arrived with 11-preinstalled pins per side and it felt great. We later added two pins per side to the outboard side of the pedal. When dropping the heels and letting it fly on fast and chattery sections of trail, the pins felt like they were engaging the sole of the shoe well enough.

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Our Giro Chamber II shoes use a Vibram rubber sole. We suspect that some of the quality rubber from FiveTen and Ride Concepts would deliver an even better connection. This brings up an interesting point. For most riders purchasing clipless shoes, rubber compound may not be front of mind. Rubber compound does matter with the REMtech pedals. If you are transitioning from flats toward this style of “hybrid” pedal, it will be important to research shoes with both the flattest soles and stickiest rubber to maximize the potential of the Avery pedals.

Climbing Performance

We were very impressed with how the well REMtech Avery pedals performed on the ascent. If there is one single area where we believe these pedals beautifully bridge the gap between flats and clips, it is climbing abilities. Efficiency was stellar and if you didn’t know you were riding with magnets on your feet, you would think you were clipped in.

Sitting and spinning up a fire road or buff singletrack is pleasant. It is easy to find a comfortable foot placement the large cleat/magnet gives you plenty of options. The 100-pounds of pull force is plenty when sitting and spinning away. The pedal stroke is far more circular than the motion of a flat pedal and feels almost identical to being clipped in. This was the most impressive performance area. Riders can really maximize efficiency and still be able to bail out in a hurry if a tricky technical move goes sideways.

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Standing up and hammering the pedals requires a bit more attention. You can blow out of the magnetic connection if you're not careful. This manifested itself in situations where you are punching up a technical climb and do the full body heave to get over an obstacle or propel yourself forward. Flat pedal riders will find this sort of climbing to be far more natural and even enjoy that extra boost of connection.

These pedals have a large platform. They are 20.2mm thick and the footprint is 119.8 x 95.2mm. The thickness of the platform is likely due to the need to house the sizeable magnet. Still, there is no denying that the footprint is large. We experienced a fair bit of pedal strikes on logs and other obstacles. This should be a consideration if you have a super low-slung bike or if your climbs are particularly technical. This isn’t a crippling issue, but it is notable.

An obvious question about the REMtech system concerns the magnet mounted to your shoe. If you are forced to hop off your bike, does it attract dirt or rocks? Does mud or water affect the magnetic pull? We are happy to report that the REMplate was not affected by water or mud. Since the magnetic plate is flat and lacks any nooks and/or crannies, it was not easily clogged up like a traditional cleat. We made a point to inspect our shoes multiple times per ride during the testing process. We were surprised to find that none of our Central Washington sandstone stuck to the cleat. We aren’t geologists and can’t comfortably say which types of rocks are attracted to magnets. All we can do is say that we didn’t experience any rock or debris sticking to the REMplate.

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The elephant in the room is that these pedals are heavy, no two ways about it. We measured the pedals alone to be 773.7 grams per set. The REMplates that mount to your shoes add another 95.2 grams per pair. Here are some comparisons:

Among clipless options, the REMtech are nearly double the 419g per pair weight of the popular CrankBrother Mallet E pedals or the 430g weight of the Shimano XT PD-8120 pedals. For gravity fiends, the Shimano Saint pedals weigh 530g per set and the CrankBrothers Mallet DH weigh 479g per set.

Popular flat pedals also weigh significantly less than the Avery pedals. The Deity T-Mac pedals come in at 440-grams per set. The OneUp Alloy pedals are 370g per pair while the RaceFace Atles are 383g per set.

There are plenty of weight-weenies in the world of mountain biking. There are also plenty of riders who prioritize function and durability over weight. It is entirely up to you to decide if a set of pedals that will represent an additional 250-350g is a deal-breaker. Many riders may not bat an eye at this additional weight while others will react very differently.

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On the trail, we didn’t feel the additional weight to be super noticeable on our 33.5-pound all-mountain/enduro bike. Our nearly 200-pound tester exists in a constant state of exhaustion as he navigated fatherhood, work, and a highly unpleasant stomach bug during the testing process. All of these trials and tribulations affected energy levels and climbing speed more than the additional pedal weight. Yes, the REMtech pedals are heavy. That said, riders on 28-pound short-travel bikes are likely not the target market for these bad boys. On the other hand, we certainly wouldn’t have complained if these pedals went on a diet.

Things That Could Be Improved

We found the REMtech Avery pedals to perform exactly as they should. While they might not be everyone’s proverbial cup of tea, they do achieve their goal of hybrid performance. 

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We feel these pedals are more attractive for flat pedal riders looking to gain some climbing efficiency. Many riders coming from the clipless world might be wanting a stronger connection than the REMtech pedals can offer. It would be interesting if Hustle could offer these pedals in various “magnetic pull strengths”. Having an option for a stronger magnet could make these pedals more attractive for traditional clipless riders. The pedals we tested with 100-pounds of pull could remain the best choice for flat pedal riders seeking a hybrid. Who doesn’t love options? 

Another area for improvement could be the platform size. The platforms are large and we did smack them around quite a bit. Obviously, magnetic pedals need to house a large magnet, as a result, there may not be a way around the 20.2mm platform thickness. That being said, if there was a way to trim down the hefty 119.9 x 95.2mm footprint just a hair, perhaps some pedal strikes could be avoided. Sometimes the difference between clipping or grazing a rock can be a couple of millimeters.

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At $219.00, these pedals are certainly expensive. The REMtech pedals perform as intended and offer quality construction. While we might not be overly-familiar with the magnet market of 2022, we can assume the magnets required to get these pedals to function are reasonably expensive and are a key factor for the high price tag.  Still, as a hybrid-style pedal, riders are likely to be taking a risk by purchasing these pedals. Riders are rolling the dice to see if they prefer this middle-of-the-road approach over whatever pedals they had been riding previously. Flat pedal riders looking to give this hybrid system a whirl will also need to purchase a pair of clipless shoes. Including a shoe purchase, it is not unreasonable to think that riders could be spending $400 to try these pedals.  It would be interesting to see a composite or stripped-down version of the REMtech pedal that sold for a lower price to entice more riders to try this intriguing technology.

Long Term Durability

We rode the REMtech Avery pedals for approximately six weeks in a huge range of conditions. They are still performing wonderfully. Hustle Bike Labs claims that the REM magnets do not lose strength over time. As a result, you can expect the magnetic connection to remain consistent. 

The bearings are still spinning freely and do not have a grainy feel to them. Hustle Bike Labs offers a three-year limited warranty against defects in “materials and workmanship”

What's The Bottom Line?

The REMtech Avery pedals perform exactly as a hybrid pedal should. They beautifully blend flat pedal freedom with the efficiency and extra control of clipless pedals. Riders who are firmly in the flat or clipless pedal camp might not be interested in the compromises the Avery pedals inherently represent. That being said, the rider looking to bridge the gap between flats and clips will be very happy with the performance of the REMtech Avery pedals.

Visit hustlebikelabs.com for more details.

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About The Reviewer

Pat Donahue - Age: 34 // Years Riding MTB: 19 // Height: 6’2” (1.88m) // Weight: 197-pounds (89.36kg)

Pat grew up sliding around on the wet roots and slimy rocks of New England. He got hooked on mountain biking in 2003 and has been seen on a mind-bending amount of bikes from DH sleds to ultra-efficient short-travel bikes. He worked in the bike industry for over a decade holding a wide range of positions from “the guy who breaks down cardboard” all the way to shop owner. He loves big rides and difficult trails and has no problem grinding up the nastiest of climbs to access a worthy downhill. Weighing in at over 200-pounds with riding gear, he prides himself on his ability to give bicycles and components a proper durability test. Off the bike, he can be seen skiing in the backcountry or wielding a hockey stick.

Perfect niche between flats and clipless

Rating:
The Good:

Can easily dismount and "clip-in". Shoe plates can't get clogged with dirt.

The Bad:

A little expensive and heavy, but worth it.

Overall Review:

I've been using these very weekend for about two months now and these are a game-changer for me. You don't have to worry about floating off of these pedals when catching air, like you do with flats.

I tried SPD clipless and had some painful and spectacularly embarrassing crashes. With these, I've never had a problem getting my feet free when I needed to and "clipping in" is instantaneous and always successful on the first attempt. Even the most experienced clipless riders still miss clipping occasionally but that could never be a problem with these -- just hover your foot near the pedals and let the magnets guide your feet. There's a satisfying "click" sound when you know the shoe plate has successfully engaged with the pedal. You also have the freedom to pivot your feet on the pedals, which is something you can't do with any clipless -- your foot is stuck in one position only.

 The other nice thing is that the flat metal plates on your shoes will never get clogged with mud and dirt like clipless often do.


Specifications

Product Hustle Avery REMtech Pedal
Riding Type Downhill, Enduro / All-Mountain, Freeride / Bike Park, Trail
Pedal Platform Size Large Platform
Pedal Platform Details Large platform with adjustable pins and Hustle's magnetic REMTech Pedal System featuring Neodymium N52 magnets with stainless steel cap
Body Material 6061-T6 series aluminum alloy body with 6061-T6 aluminum magnet housing
Bearing Type Sealed bearing/roller bearing sleeve
Spindle Spec 430 stainless steel
Cleat Type Hustle ferrous metal 32mm x 56mm REMplate, compatible with two-bolt SPD-specific shoes
Float Virtually infinite because, unlike traditional clipless pedals, your foot can rotate freely on the pedal body
Colors Blackjack Black, Diode Blue, or Gunmetal Gray
Weight 1 lb 10.5 oz (750 g)
Miscellaneous
  • 95mm x 120mm footprint
  • 15 adjustable pins per side (recommended 9 per side)
  • 100+lbs pull force per pedal
  • Weight is 750g/set (without pins)
  • Price $219
    More Info

    With the magnetic REMPedal System, you are connected to the bike as with traditional clipless pedals but you also enjoy the freedom of a flat pedal. You're never “locked in." Only magnetic force is holding your foot to the REMpedal. You can pull off in almost any direction and have virtually infinite float on the pedal.

    Learn more at hustlebikelabs.com.

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