In this article I’m going to provide you with a Hope F20 flat pedals review. I bought this pedal based on my own research of the most popular mountain bike flat pedals currently available.
Since these pedals are part of a bike restoration and upgrade project I will also delve into a bit of old pedal technology and draw some comparisons.
The original setup
The bike the Hope F20 will be adorning is a 1998 Cannondale Killer V. The most expensive Cannondale mountain bike of that year was the Cannondale Super V DHF.
Since they are SPD pedals and the Hope F20 are flat pedals, I looked up what came closest to this type of pedals. Back in the day that would be caged pedals. And all the bikes were outfitted with the Wellgo LU-955 ones.
Amazingly enough you can still find these pedals for a mere €10, albeit without the cage. Apparently, Cannondale didn’t splurge on pedals back in the day. Since I paid almost €150 for the pair of Hope F20’s you have your first big difference right there.
I put a set of VP-992A pedals on there because the original ones had already been removed. These pedals can also still be had on the cheap for €15.
Why new pedals?
Now, there’s nothing really wrong with these pedals, especially considering what you have to pay for a new pair.
But I do tend to take risks on the bike and there’s two things I hate most when riding: mis-shifting and your foot flipping from the pedal. And the latter is what happened too often for me not to do something about it.
Besides, the entire bike is being redone with premium parts, so it was a good excuse for me to get a real solid pair of mountain bike flat pedals.
Why Hope F20 flat pedals?
So why did I go for the Hope F20 pedals? There seemed to be a general consensus that these pedals were one of the best if not the best pedals out there.
Enduro MTB basically says it all.
High-quality craftsmanship, finest machining, superb looks and tons of grip combined with excellent bearings and the best-quality seals in the entire test field. This time around the Hope F20 jumps right ahead of the competition. And if this wasn’t enough the F20 features many well-thought-out details: one of them is the socket of the pins which is placed on the inside of the pedal and allows you to replace the pins even if they’re badly damaged. This makes the Hope F20 an (almost) eternal trail-companion. Our undisputed “Best in Test”!Valentin Rühl – Enduro MTB
And although I really liked the Deity TMac for their symmetric looks, I couldn’t justify paying the shipping costs from the U.S.
It’s almost funny to think how bad caged pedals are for MTB riding versus the current generation flat pedals. And you don’t have to look much further to see huge differences between the two.
As already mentioned we’ve come a long way with the amount of money we’re willing to invest into a set of pedals. There’s a 10x difference between these two, so the Hope F20 has to offer more than just looks.
With 110 x 102 x 14mm. the Hope F20 is normally sized for a current type pedal. But if you compare that to the VP-992A, the thing becomes absolutely huge.
It is much slimmer though, with the VP width measuring 21 – 25mm. It means the Hope F20 with the 4 mm pins installed are still thinner than the old pedals.
The combination of pins and size will ensure that the grip of the old pedals pales in comparison to the new ones, which is exactly what I bought them for.
The VP-992A has a claimed combined weight of 330 grams. The Hope F20 is one hair away from tipping the scales across 4 ounces, with a claimed weight of 390 grams. The weight of the F20 is pretty average for aluminum pedals.
VP-992A Build Quality
There’s a huge difference in build quality between these two. Basically the VP-992A are non-serviceable pedals. They are made up of a resin body which holds a metal band in place with four screws that make up the rest of the pedal and that holds your foot.
It probably has a steel axle with loose bearings that are press fit. What always happens with these pedals, is that the bearings become contaminated due to the low quality seals. They wear out because of this, which consequently introduces a great deal of play. If the wear to the bearings is really bad, they simply lock up.
The metal band has teeth that wear as well, lowering the grip the pedal provides, which isn’t all that much to begin with.
Don’t get me wrong. I like these pedals a lot for the value they offer versus the money you have to pay. And the fact that they’re still around after decades is a clear indication they overall design has stood the test of time.
Hope F20 Build Quality
But the Hope F20 are in a league of their own. As mentioned in the quote. They can withstand a tremendous amount of abuse and are built to last.
The body is a single block of machined aluminum and my guess is the axle bends before something will ever happen to the body. Its construction with several arched bridges looks so strong I doubt if anyone ever had problems with these pedals.
It’s anodized and multiple colors are available. The chromo axle runs through sealed cartridge bearings. The Hope F20 flat pedals are known to have fantastic seals. At first look this seems to be the case with the axle rotating smoothly but extremely tight.
You’ll receive 10 spare pins, which are rear-loading. So even if they are badly damaged you won’t have any trouble replacing them.
Some people are complaining about the fact they have to screw the pins in themselves, saying you shouldn’t have to do that for the amount of money these pedals cost. I saw a figure of 30 minutes for doing this. I don’t consider that much time. I did it in less than 20 for the pair and enjoyed the process. So yeah, you have to do the pins. Big deal.
Hope F20 Pedal Installation
Unlike the original pedals you’ll need a 6 mm hex wrench to fix them into place. The axle doesn’t hold slots for a pedal wrench. This installation process is simple and straightforward.
The combination of size and 20 pins per pedal (10 for each side), makes the grip of the Hope F20’s immense if compared with the pedals they’re replacing.
But when compared with other modern day flat pedals I can understand why some people would say these pedals are not the grippiest. This means that while riding you can still slide around your foot on the pedal somewhat on the upward stroke.
I also own a set of Deity TMacs with 28 pins per pedal and a very pronounced concave shape. When your foot is on that pedal you simply won’t be able to move it anymore. That means the Hope F20’s grip is perfect for the bike they’re on, since I mostly use the bike for road use.
Final verdict for this Hope F20 flat pedals review
I haven’t ridden these pedals yet, but I’m sure they’ll pass the test with flying colors.
I’ll be updating this article with a ride review, when I’ve done a couple of hundred miles on them. But as for all the other aspects I’ve reviewed here, I’m not disappointed in the least.
If you want to learn more about this pedal and other pedals and their reviews, be sure to check out my top picks for the best mountain bike flat pedals.
You might also like
There are a number of reasons why you should put bullhorn bars on mountain bikes, and in this article I’m going to give them. I’ve