Crankbrothers’ pedals have always had a loyal following from aggressive riders and those from gravity disciplines who want more grip and foot support for softer soled mountain bike shoes, and these Mallet 2 pedals have the largest platforms in its clipless range.
The Mallet 2 is also the entry-level pedal in Crankbrothers’ clipless line-up. It may not have quite the same features and adjustment as its more expensive counterparts, but I reckon it still feels great underfoot.
Crankbrothers Mallet 2 specifications and details
The platform – made from a two-piece aluminium and composite construction – measures 83mm long by 73mm wide.
The absence of pins does, however, allow you to run the cleat tight to the bottom of your shoe, with no spacers, for all-round contact without the interference of pins in cleat engagement/release.
The clip mechanism is Crankbrothers’ free-spinning eggbeater design, which takes a bit of getting used to if coming from SPD-style pedals, but they allow you to clip in from multiple angles as well as directly downwards. The more open mechanism is great at shedding mud too.
Some may not like that Crankbrothers’ pedals have no spring tension adjustment, but instead this is done by switching cleats, of which there are four different types. The supplied standard gold cleats have 6 degrees of float and a 15-degree release angle, but others are available with an easier 10-degree release angle or the same release angle but with zero degrees of float.
Crankbrothers Mallet 2 performance
On the trail, particularly when the terrain gets rough and fast, the Mallet 2 pedals feel superb. The generous platform gives ample foot support and the foot cupping platform provides a really solid connection with the bike.
Clipping out with urgency never feels hard and because of the multiple entry angles the eggbeater system allows, re-engagement after a foot dab is easy, even if you don’t locate the clip perfectly first time.
The only thing I don’t like is the narrow 52mm Q-factor, which places your foot quite close to the crank arm. This didn’t cause a problem with all of the shoes I tried them with, but shoes with wider, flatter soles and with the cleat slots not positioned so far inboard were a little awkward to unclip at certain points in the pedal stroke because my toes got caught on the crank arms, and my heels scuffed past them when pedalling too.
Crankbrothers Mallet 2 bottom line
Provided the shorter than average axle spacing on these doesn’t cause you any issues, I reckon these are a great set of pedals for riders wanting both good foot support and pedal feel.