So you’re interested in a set of these “A1” pedals? Well, have a read of this mini-review before you wack a set on and prevent potential early failure!
The only truly important part of this thread:
-DON’T just wack on your Echo TR pedals and ride/bash the hell out of them on day one.
-^Because of this: Axles/pedal body interface is not 100% dialled up out of the box: THERE IS a tiny bit of ‘wobble’ between the body and axle, and is completely DRY inside. You need to ‘fix’ those 2 problems before you ride these pedals…
-But it can be remedied in 5 minutes…
-Get yourself a 6mm allen key and screw the end caps off the pedals
-Take the internal axle locknuts out with a small socket wrench (9mm)
-IMPORTANT: These pedals don’t have the traditional dual “Locknut and its partner Preload nut” that most pedals have. It’s just the ONE nut inside the pedal that acts as BOTH the preload nut and locknut.
-Don’t mess this part up: The RH pedal’s axle at the very end where the preload/lock nut screws onto is Reverse-thread i.e. same as a Left pedal’s main axle screwing into a crank. So don’t mess it up by thinking: 'damn this nut isn’t screwing off!" by turning it anticlockwise as normal… because it’s actually tightening it more! I ALMOST learnt the hard way by stripping out… phew lucky I didn’t!
-NOW: You’ll see the axle is actually pretty skinny. Don’t be put off by it. However, it’s almost completely DRY inside the pedal and on the axle. Not good
-^This is why there will be a tiny bit of ‘play’ between the axle and the body brand new out of the box
-^Therefore it can lead to premature damage if left untended
-So, have a good quality grease ready, I recommend: Phil Wood first, and Park Tool polylube second. It should be easy for Americans to get Phil Wood so go for that, it’s the best grease for bicycle maintenance. A good grease is going to make things run smoother for longer without gunking up or attracting grit and crap like your average snot-coloured cheapo grease! Worthy investment
-SMOTHER the axle and inside of the pedal body in grease and spread it out with your fingers. Bit messy, but oh well.
-Put it all back together, remembering which way the locknuts screw onto the end of the axle tip. Tighten as hard as you can without stripping it out.
Et voila, you’ll notice now that the pedals spin a bit ‘thicker’ and slower due to the copious amounts of grease inside. This is good. By servicing these pedals out of the box brand new is doing yourself favours. Mainly you’ll notice that the ultra-spinny loose rattly pedals are always the ones that slip and shindig you the most. The servicing of the TRs works against that potential hazard.
Also, the pedals feel A LOT more ‘secure’ on the axle now that we’ve taken them apart, greased them up good and tightened the inner nut to a good torque. I am a lot more confident about these now then when they came out of the box brand new. Some grease leaks out of the pedal body at the crank end, but this is normal… it’s just when the pedals spin they naturally purge out excess until the ‘optimum’ amount of grease is reached. Though, this is where I would like the TRs to feature the rubber O-ringy seals that MG1s and some other pedals have!
The most convenient feature of the TRs is: the dual-purpose inner nut that serves as both a preloader and a locknut. I always hated working on pedals that featured an inner preload nut a locknut next to it. Made getting the ‘preload’ on the pedal spinning a bitch to get right and worse yet… synchronise with the other pedal. Not the case on these TRs, you just tighten the one nut up as much as poss without stripping it, and you’re good to go. Very simple design that works.
These are really good pedals, I have had a brand new pair of Wellgo MG1s and a brand new pair of the 2011 versions in my hands at the same time and could do a fair comparison from just holding them:
-Echo TR is much lighter and slimmer. Slimmer pedals= less chance of the infamous foot slipping off and shin-digging.
-Echo TR has more durable pins but less jagged and sharp, it’s up to you what you want!
-Wellgo MG1 has a shorter and slightly thicker axle= theoretically stronger
-Wellgo MG1 features rubber O-ring style plugs to help keep grease trapped in the pedals instead of leaking out. Makes the pedal body seem to have a more ‘secure’ fit on the axle. I wish Echo TRs had a rubber o-ring too
-The area of both pedals is roughly the same.
-Echo TR 2011 is superior to the 2010 version because of supporting struts and updates. I’ve held both in my hands at the same time
All-in-all, good pedals. Just don’t be in a rush to ride the heck out of them. If any of you ride BMX flatland you’ll know that a Freecoaster rear hub needs to be personally serviced out of the box to get it running ‘optimum’. Same goes for TR pedals and most others. On some parts, naturally the factory service is just about ‘adequate’; i.e. you’re kind of expected to tinker with it yourself to get it running as smooth as poss.
Never realised how long a write-up that was! Well, I hope some of you may find it useful. With any luck, you’ll be saving yourself from a prematurely eroded axle and shot bearings by carrying out the service above.