BEFORE: creaky, knackered bearings, worn and broken pins. AFTER: good as new
Replacing your pedal bearings is easy, satisfying and it’ll save you cash in the long run – here’s how to do it.
Tools for the job
- Vault pedal service tool £16
- 6mm Allen wrench
- 10mm socket (V12 | V12mag)
- 8mm socket
- Soft-faced hammer
- DMR Vault Bearings & Vault Pedal Service Kit includes £25
If you ride in rocky terrain or like to sneak pedal strokes in when there’s minimum ground clearance like on a e-bike, the flat pedals on your bike can get battered. These impacts not only scuff and damage the platform, they also stress the unseen part of the pedal, the bearings. Add to that constant use, dirt ingress and grease-melting spray cleaner and you have a recipe for disaster.
Thankfully revamping the bearings is a relatively easy and inexpensive job that you can do at home with a few simple tools. The pedal we’re servicing today is the erstwhile DMR Vault – a popular platform pedal with replacement parts easy to come by and several online video and service instructions. It uses a simple internal bearing/bushing assembly, which is also found in a lot of other pedals, the point being servicing most flat pedals isn’t going to be difficult.
1. Hold the axle with 6mm Allen then loosen and remove the aluminium end cap with a second 6mm. This exposes an 8mm nut, which you remove with a 8mm socket (note the right-hand pedal has a left-hand thread, it loosens the opposite way). You can then slide the axle out of the pedal body – clean, inspect and replace any parts as necessary.
2. Using the Vault pedal service tool, which you wind into the bushing you then pull it free from the axle. If this is particularly worn it may come away by hand. Pop out the bearings on the other end and discard.
3. It’s then just a case of working backwards. Flip the tool over and fit the new bushing with a dab of Loctite 641 or similar. Fit new bearings with a good dollop of fresh grease and install the axle, nut and end cap.
Since you’ve been smashing the pedal into rocks you may have lost or damaged the pins so this is a good time to refresh those too. DMR offers three pin kits for the Vault – the basic Flippins (£12 for a pack of 44) with a mixture of short 8.5 and longer 12.5 pins, which you use to create concavity on the platform surface. You can also get the Moto X pin (£12 for 44) with a sharpened 11mm point and there’s also the new King Pins (£15 for 44) which have been developed by Brendog and are a whopping 15mm!
If you fancy saving weight DMR also offers a titanium axle upgrade for the Vault. At £100 for a pair of axle it isn’t a cheap mod but it saves a ton of weight and the gold finish looks pretty pimp.
Bearing kits and other spares
Brand > Bearings > Pins > CrMo Axle > Ti Axle
HT > £11.99 > Inc > £11.99 > £99.99
DMR > £25 > £12 > NA > £99
Nukeproof > £13.99 > £6.99 > £9.99 > NA
Burgtec > £19.99 > £9.99 > NA > £49.99
Crank Bros > £21.99 > £10.99 > £15.99 > £64
Chromag > £34.99 > NA > Inc > NA