Beautiful to look at but lacking in grip
This beautifully finished, knurled Hope F20 platform is Hope’s first flat pedal and has proven tough and durable in wet UK riding conditions.
Typically for the northern brand, it takes some serious abuse and neglect to get the F20s to show any signs of play or mud ingress, and the 2014-series aluminium body is also tough to scrape or dent.
Presumably, this reliability reflects how each heat-treated chromoly axle spins inside a trio of cartridge bearings and a Norglide bushing, protected by a combination of two seals at the crank end and rubber O-ring and end cap at the outside edge. The outside machined platform surface features an anti-slipping ‘ripple’ design, but we couldn’t notice any benefit from it, and, in fact, with the near-flat body, overall grip is a bit lacking compared to the competition.
On this grip score, after rider feedback, Hope now ships the F20 with taller, hollow steel pins, but these only offer a marginal improvement and still aren’t particularly sharp for digging into shoe soles. We always leave the Hope’s four centre studs out to create extra concavity and a more cradled feel, but descending on rough ground or winching up technical, muddy climbs, shoes still don’t feel as locked in on the F20 as we’d prefer. One other gripe is how it’s a fiddly pain having to install the pins yourself on a £120 product, we’d prefer someone else to do the legwork for this money.
Hope’s platform body is very tough and the bearing and seals are superb quality, we just wish the northern brand offered an option of a more concave platform with thinner, gripper pins, because the F20s simply don’t offer as much traction and security as the competition when things get hectic.