Well sealed but a bit pricey
Joystick Emulator pedal is the Brit brand’s latest offering. It’s one of a breed of flats with the inboard bearing housed in a raised part of the platform.
The inboard bearing being close to the crank, which means the body can be thinner for better ground clearance and stability. This design also means there’s a narrower pedal stance than most platforms too, making it more efficient and comfortable when pedalling.
The 4140 steel axle uses a high-load DU bushing at one end and a sealed cartridge bearing at the other. The seals look high quality and are tightly fitted, which should bode well for preventing the water and crud ingress that can quickly wreck internals.
Since the Emulator sits right in tight on the crank arm, like other similar designs, the axle has no spanner flats and won’t spin with carbon crank boots without adding extra washers.
Joystick’s useable platform real estate is on the small side, but this helps keep the weight relatively low. The brand claims an ‘optimum concave shape’, but you’ll struggle to see (or sense) any dish to the platform, which feels almost entirely flat.
Nine traction pins are sensibly placed right in the corners on the pedal’s edges (where you place most leverage controlling the bike), but the broader, outermost edge pins have a hex key fitment on top and aren’t very grippy.
The lack of concavity, the inboard bearing bulge (and associated smaller shoe surface area), combined with bottom loading pins that are a bit too fat to really bite into soles all adds up to only average grip levels.
If you need a really locked-on feel, you’ll need to look elsewhere, and the Emulator is a bit pricey too for what’s on offer, considering you can find much more bite elsewhere for less money.