DENVER, CO (BRAIN) — Sampson Sports has two new pedals — including one model with an innovative bike fitting feature — and is splitting off its private label business for events into a new company called Event Gear.
Sampson has two new pedals for 2013. One is super light and the other allows fit adjustments that previously were possible only with cleat shims, spindle changes and other inconveniences.
First the lightweight pedal: The Stratics Carbon Titanium weighs 97 grams per pedal, has a platform width of 66 mm, a 9.7 mm stack height, adjustable tension, sealed bearings and a "no-rock" cleat platform. Cleats and hardware weigh 56 grams.
Company president Eric Sampson said the pedals were raced for almost two years before being released to the public. During that time a rider won a gold medal at the Pan American Games on the pedals. MSRP is $349. A version with a chromoly axle, weighing 122 grams per pedal, will sell for the $249. The pedal is available now.
Sampson will show the adjustable pedal to the public next month at the North American Handmade Bicycle Show in the company's homebase of Denver.
The pedal, called the Stratics FS, adjusts in just about every conceivable direction at the turn of an allen wrench.
Stance width can be adjusted a total of 7 millimeters in 1 millimeter increments, in addition to another 3 to 4 millimeters of adjustment via moving the cleat laterally on the shoe. This adjustment is made on other pedals by swapping spindles.
The Stratics FS also has an adjustable fore and aft positioning (11 millimeters, plus what is available through cleat positioning), pedal height (about a half-inch) and foot angle, also called cant (20 degrees or more in either direction, to accommodate supination or pronation.).
Bike fitters normally adjust cant with angled shims under the pedal cleat. Sampson noted that shims can affect a pedal's entry and release performance because the rider tends to twist the foot on a plane that doesn't match the pedal body's plane. Adjusting cant by moving the pedal body itself prevents any interference in cleat release, he said.
Sampson said the Stratics FS will retail for about $200 and will go into production in May.
Sampson said he is exploring offering new fitting tools to complement the pedals. He envisions a device that would allow a fitter to create a fit "from the foot up" rather than from the top down like other systems.
Sampson has been producing private label products for athletic events for several years, including some bottle cages and bar wrap for last year's USA Pro Cycling Challenge stage race in Colorado.
Now Sampson is spinning off that business into a new company, Event Gear. Event Gear will produce custom products for cycling, running and multi-sport event organizers, Eric Sampson said.
"Sampson (as a brand) is bicycles and components and some accessories, but Event Gear is designed to work with events building speciality products for events on a private label basis," Sampson said.
Among the Event Gear offerings are water bottles, insulated bottles, cages, handlebar tape and eyewear. He said his long experience in the performance bike marketplace, plus deep connections with factories, allows Event Gear to create desirable promotional products,
"There's a lot of product out there" for events, he said, "but if the product doesn't get used by the event participant, it doesn't do anybody any good. We want to sell products that the participant will reach for every day."