Back in February at Bike Connection Agency, the Nukeproof demo guy was appalled to see that I was still carrying around a very worn out (and bent at the axle) pair of pedals that I had previously presented him with in August 2019. I honestly believed that my pedals were fine and in a bid not not increase the amount of ‘stuff’ I own, I stuck with them through winter. That said, I was persuaded to try out a set of Nukeproof Horizon Sam Hill Pro flat pedals. Here’s how I’ve got on with them.
The Nukeproof Horizon Pro grew from the EWS in France 2018 when Sam Hill’s mechanic was filing the edges of the platform off the previous model away to reduce pedal strike and give more clearance. The pedal was taken back to the engineers in the UK and they got working on a new enduro specific flat pedal.
The engineers found that they couldn’t just cut the edges away because it took too much strength out of the pedal, so Nukeproof re-engineered the whole pedal to reduce the edges whilst keeping the pins in the same place, because Sam liked the feel of the pedal, he just wanted more clearance.
As a result of the shape the pedals have become lighter, although that wasn’t the aim. After two years of development, Sam has been riding these for all of last season and this season, he rode on one prototype for the start of the season, then they updated it to a new prototype which he won on.
Placement of the pins paired with the chassis profile have created a contoured edge to help deflect rock strikes.
The pedal body is designed to accommodate all shoe profiles and can be tailored to a grip level that suits the rider by removing the pin washers.
They have polished tops so they don’t look worn out after a few rides and contain the same internals as the previous flat pedal, so they have plenty of spare parts without waste. They are available in six colours.
It’s fair to say that almost any new set of pedals would have felt incredibly sticky to me after hammering my previous set almost daily for two years straight, and not even replacing the pins, but in order to give a fair review I’ve ridden a set of Chromag Contact, V12, Hope F20 and some of the Nukeproof Neutron EVO for comparison.
The shoes I’ve worn with the Nukeproof Horizon Pro flats are FiveTen Trailcross Mid Pro, Vaude AM Moab and FiveTen Sleuth. Paired with the Vaude AM Moab they are a match made in heaven for grip. Those boots in particular seem to grip to pedals more so than anything else I ride in, but the combination of flat platform, stiff thick soles and insane grip make you feel so secure on the pedals.
I’ve worn my FiveTen Trailcross more than anything else recently. They have a lower profile and slightly softer sole than my other shoes and quite often I’ll jump on the bike and need to make a real effort to put my feet in the right place. I think I point my toes in to nip the cranks out of habit, but I don’t need to now I have really grippy pedals, and once my feet are where I need them they tend to stay put.
I’ve blown my entire foot off the pedal on two occasions in my FiveTen Trailcross boots – once when I clipped a rut so hard I ended up with backache, and another when I was climbing and I guess I just went to pull up as if I was clipped in, which sounds stupid but when your shoes are this connected to a pedal it’s not impossible to forget you’re on flats. I haven’t had my feet move on the platform at all, needing to adjust myself back into position. Once your feet are in place they stay there.
Amusingly in my FiveTen Trailcross with their softer sole, I’ve had to peel my feet off the pedals at the end of some longer trails. It seems I don’t squid anymore (I used to take my feet off my pedals a lot due to a lack of confidence on turns) but keeping them on these very sharp pins for a length of time they really do get sticky.
In the FiveTen Sleuth I’ve seen the benefit of the large platform, as those have really soft soles and tend to taco around pedals that have a smaller platform.
How sharp is too sharp for pedal pins?
There is no denying that thin, long pins are great for grip. They do run the risk of shredding your legs if ever you do slip off the pedals though. In my case, I don’t need to slip of the pedals, I just need to be walking alongside my bike, locking it up, rolling it through a gate… basically, if I’m near my bike and my feet aren’t on the pedals, I find a way to injure myself.
Nukeproof Horizon Pro Enduro pedals don’t take much pressure to break skin, in my experience. I have a gallery of cuts and scars, and I even wrote a short story for Singletrack issue 130 about a particularly bad situation that involved my ‘upper leg crease.’ There is the option to add washers to reduce the pin height, something I of all people should consider but I’m enjoying being stuck to my bike too much.
I’ve bonded with these pedals. They have been inside me without consent, but despite the scars I don’t have any intention of replacing them anytime soon. I have a new confidence in my riding thanks to being fully connected to the bike, and no amount of trail chunder can bounce me off these. They seem to pair well with almost any shoe and perform just as well in the wet as they do in the dry. A great solution for those wanting to feel secure without being clipped in.
- Material // Forged 6061-T6 Alloy body with CNC finishing
- Axle // 9/16” Cro-Mo
- 2x high-quality DU bushings & 4x sealed Z989 cartridge bearings (pair)
- Adjustable pin heights
- Weight // Claimed 430g, as tested 426g
|Product:||Horizon Sam Hill Pro Enduro Flat Pedal|
|Tested:||by Amanda for 3 months|
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“They have been inside me without consent” Hell’s teeth! I nearly spat out my breakfast! Hannah, have you read this?
+1 for the non-riding pedal injuries. That makes me feel better; I thought it was just me 😀
Another timely SIngletrack review to throw a spanner in my purchasing plans! Now I’ve recovered from the shock of your overall summary Amanda (unlike ‘brakestoomuch’ I had no breakfast mouthful to expel so I could only gawp like a goldfish) I am going to have bank your review for the future.
I have used lockdown riding to switch from clipped to flats reasoning the change will slow me down, which it has, and improve my technique. Felt horribly insecure to begin with but I’m beginning to adapt.
I have decided to commit and ordered a pair of Burgtec composite Penthouse MK4 (based on another Singletrack review) so we’ll see how I get on with those before I return to your thoughts here. At least I’ll be prepared for the summary…
brakestoomuch.. I’m so pleased it wasn’t just me. I’m still laughing as I’m typing this. Thanks Amanda for cheering me up.
Bring on a plastic version, the gen 1 plastic horizons were superb but they’re getting hard to find