First Impressions: VP Components R73H Pedals

In the 30 years since LOOK debuted their first clipless pedal, the company’s single-sided design has proven to be extremely popular with riders and manufacturers alike. While there are dozens of LOOK-style pedals available, VP Components’ R73H model stands out from the crowd with a sleek, low-profile body, and an innovative two-piece cleat.

GRAVELBIKE.com gravel grinder VP Components R73H clipless pedal Look Keo

VP’s R73H feature alloy and carbon-composite bodies with stainless steel wear plates.

The R73H pedals utilize CroMo steel spindles and a combination of sealed cartridge bearings and LSL (Lightweight Self Lubricating) bushings. Installation requires an 8mm hex key, and release tension is adjustable via a 2.5mm allen fitting. Our sample pedals weighed 266g/pair, with the cleats and hardware coming in at 80g/pair.

GRAVELBIKE.com gravel grinder VP Components R73H clipless pedal Look Keo SRAM Force 22

The R73H’s naturally oriented themselves for easy entry.

In use, the VP pedals felt much like other LOOK-style pedals. Entry and exit were consistent, and confirmed by audible and tactile feedback (even at the lightest tension setting). The sealed bearings remained smooth during the course of our testing, and didn’t develop any play. Paired with Mavic’s Galibier road shoes, the unique two-piece cleats were pleasantly silent. Like most dedicated road pedals, the VPs performed best when restricted to paved-road use and walking was kept to a minimum.

When the R73H’s cleats do eventually wear out, replicating the correct position is a breeze thanks to VP’s patented two-piece design. Simply unbolt one portion of the cleat and snap in the replacement piece. Tighten the hardware, and repeat the procedure for the remaining section. VP’s two-piece cleat is 100% KeO-compatible, and can be purchased separately in fixed or floating (7°) versions.

Disclosure: VP Components provided review samples for this article, but offered no other form of compensation for this review.

Under Test: Crank Brothers Candy 3 Pedals

GRAVELBIKE.com gravel grinder crank brothers bros candy eggbeater pedal pedals

Crank Brothers’ Candy 3 pedals feature forged CroMo spindles, needle and cartridge bearings, and a two-piece machined aluminum body for added support and stability. The included cleats fit SPD-compatible shoes, and can be configured for 15° or 20° release angles.

Stay tuned…

Under Test: New Albion Cycles Frame

GRAVELBIKE.com New Albion Cycles Privateer gravel grinder SOMA Sugino Panaracer Sun XCD SunTour Selle Anatomica

 

New Albion Cycles‘ Privateer frame is an affordable ($279.99 MSRP), CroMo steel frame that can be built up as a tourer, commuter, or mixed-terrain country bike. The complete bike (above) was built up by the good folks at SOMA Fabrications using a mix of components from Panaracer, SOMA, Sugino, Sun XCD, and Suzue.

Stay tuned…