The cheapest Candy pedal comes up trumps for XC or gravel, plus they are pretty light too
Aug 17 2018
Not that heavy
Different cleats available for alternative float options
Clip in mechanism takes some getting used to
There are cheaper options out there
Release tension is not adjustable
You want small, light pedals for a gravel, cross country or cyclocross at a reasonable price
The Candy pedal is Crankbrothers answer to those riders that love their clipless (or clip in) Eggbeater pedal but want a little more platform for support. The Candy 1’s are the cheapest in the range with a light composite body, the usual Crankbro's four-sided mechanism and a ribbed pedal body for extra traction.
I’ve been testing these Candy 1 pedals on my gravel bike for a few months now and as Crankbro's suggest I can confirm that these pedals are best for cyclocross, gravel riding and trail riding too. The small cage is slightly chunky in design but if you bought them in black rather than this hot pink, they’d be a much more unobtrusive package. Swapping my Shimano M530 pedals out, I was pleased to see these Candy’s are 188g lighter than their rivals, the Shimano pedals are £14 cheaper though.
The inner bearing is an igus LL-glide bearing whilst the outer is an enduro cartridge bearing, both of which have performed well without a hint of complaint. The spindle used is forged 435 chromoly steel, a staple throughout the Candy range until you get to the Candy 11’s which use titanium and come with an eye-watering £400 price tag.
The Candy’s use the same cleat mechanism as all their Crankbrothers siblings, a four-sided cage which rotates through 360 degrees more easily than I have experienced on other Crankbro’s pedal, such as the Mallet DH’s. The pedals are paired with brass cleats where release angles are customisable (although release tension isn’t adjustable) between 15 and 25 degrees depending on which foot you position the cleats on. The clip in and out mechanism isn’t as positive as you might be used to if you have ridden other pedals such as Shimano or HT but its relatively easy to locate the pedal and push down on it to engage the cleat. I’m used to riding Crankbrothers pedals now and hardly missed a pedal throughout my test time but I’m well aware that the process takes some time to acclimatise too and these can still be a bit like marmite to some.
I have also tried out the 0° float cleats that are available as a separate purchase on these pedals and whilst the clip in mechanism is still a little vauge if you are used to Shimano SPD’s, the clip out is much more positive and I preferred it. The brass cleats though, do wear quickly and as they have worn, I’ve found myself unclipping mid trail which is a little disconcerting. It’s useful to note that Crankbrothers also make other alternative cleats to purchase separately. These offer different release angle option (10 degrees) rather than 15/20 degrees as with the cleats you get in the box. There is also a choice of two float options - 0 or 8 degrees, rather than the standard 6 degrees. For XC or CX riding 0 degree float makes a lot of sense on a ride where you don't necessarily need to reposition the foot when cornering for example.
It’s less likely to happen on a gravel bike than a mountain bike but if you inadvertently find yourself riding unclipped, there isn’t a huge amount of support on offer from the cage. It does, however, provide adequate support either side of the foot when riding clipped in and of course, it helps you to locate the pedal in the first instance.
The Candy 1’s are a good budget option for Crankbro’s fans riding gravel or cross country riding. For trail use I’d be tempted to stick with my Mallet E’s for a tad more foot support. For those having not ventured onto a set of Crankbrothers pedals yet, these could a good pair to test the water, they don’t cost the earth, they are pretty light and the easy entry mechanism doesn’t take too much muscle to engage.
Rachael is happiest on two wheels, she's been riding bikes for a good few years now after horses got too expensive! Partial to a race or two Rachael also likes getting out into the hills with a big bunch of mates. She's been writing for publications such as, Enduro Mountain Bike Magazine, Mountain Biking UK, Bike Radar, New Zealand Mountain Biker and was also the online editor for Spoke magazine in New Zealand too. For as long as she's been riding and is equally happy getting stuck into a kit review as she is creating stories, she also coaches mountain biking and when she's not busy with all the above she's serving coffee from a horse trailer!