Despite coming from the vast depths of the French Decathlon warehouse these BTwin pedals are made by VP Components who make an awful lot of headsets, bottom brackets and pedals both under their own name and for a whole bunch of other people. Despite their bargain price these 500 pedals have a certain reassuring provenance.
They're not light pedals. The body is aluminium but the axle is steel, as is the spring; you don't get any titanium and carbon dieting for your thirty quid, princess. There's a steel plate on that alloy body to prevent wear too. The pedals fix into the crank via an 8mm allen key out the back, there are no spanner flats on the axle.
The spring mechanism for the BTwin 500 is a basic affair. A chunky exposed spring curls its way round the spindle of the cleat retention clasp, and spring tension can be adjusted via the 2.5mm allen key bolt embedded in the pedal body. That deals with both entry and release forces simultaneously, no independent adjustment here. That clipping in and out is done with a reassuring clunk that requires a certain amount of determination as that unsophisticated spring adjustment doesn't offer much in the way of a difference between tight and loose, because it's a robust steel spring.
The red cleats don't have any fancy pontoons or protective nubbins stuck on them so if you like to walk around nature reserves in inappropriate shoes you're not going to get much life out of them, and walking in them is as duck-awkward as you'd expect.
There's no float in the B'Twin cleat. Well, there's the tiniest bit of clicky play between the cleat and pedal if you force it but to call it actual float would be an injustice. Your knees will either be fine with this rigid interface or not. For me it was a problem, not necessarily for short rides but after a couple of hours of float-free pedaling my knees would start to complain. Your mileage may vary, as they say. Literally.
The B'Twin blurb suggests that you can use Look Keo cleats on their pedals, and while they use the same industry standard three-hole mounting system and look (heh) about the same to the naked eye, the Keo cleats won't entertain clipping into the BTwin pedals. So if you try to introduce some float into the system this way, you'll be disappointed and you'll have a spare set of Keo cleats.
The pedals are guaranteed for two years but if longer term maintenance issues occur the axle can be unwound from the body with the Shimano TL PD-40 tool that you might have in the shed and the sealed bearings tinkered with and replaced if necessary. At their bargain price it'll probably work out cheaper, if less eco friendly, just to get a new set of pedals, with cleats to replace the ones that are a bit worn out now.
The BTwin 500s are okay pedals, especially for the price. If you can live with the lack of float the body of the pedal is large enough not to cause any hot-spots or any feelings of roll, pitch or yaw, and is a stiff enough platform for any kind of cycling you might want to do. But if you hunt around the internet for bargains you can find other similarly priced road pedals that come with cleats that offer some degrees of float, I'd probably go for them if I were you.
Cheap robust Look alike clip-in pedal let down by lack of float
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Make and model: BTwin 500 Road Clipless pedals
Size tested: white
Tell us what the product is for, and who it's aimed at. What do the manufacturers say about it? How does that compare to your own feelings about it?
The B'Twin 500 Road Pedals are designed for regular road cyclists using Look Keo compatible cleats. High resistance pedal bearings and body.
A solidly made pedal.
Perfectly acceptable click-in pedals let down by basic spring adjustment and lack of float.
Lack of float will be an issue to some.
Perfectly acceptable entry level pedals.
Tell us how the product performed overall when used for its designed purpose
As a clipless pedal they did just fine, clipping in and out was solid, the lack of free play might cause some people's joints to complain.
Tell us what you particularly liked about the product
Cheap, and repairable if needs be.
Tell us what you particularly disliked about the product
The lack of float was a bit of a pain, literally.
Did you enjoy using the product? To a certain extent, until the static pedal interface started to ache my knees a bit.
Would you consider buying the product? No, the lack of float is an issue for my knees.
Would you recommend the product to a friend? If they wanted a cheap 'have a go' pair of clipless pedals, yes.
Tell us some more about the technical aspects of the product?
Large pedal surface for greater performance.'Aluminium body, Chromoly steel axle and cartridge ball bearings.'Adjustable cleat tension (80~180 kgf/cm).'For KEO-compatible shoes and cleats. 2 year guarantee.
Age: 47 Height: 180cm Weight: 73kg
I usually ride: It varies as to the season. My best bike is: The one I\'m on at the time
I've been riding for: Over 20 years I ride: Most days I would class myself as: Experienced
I regularly do the following types of riding: road racing, cyclo cross, general fitness riding, fixed/singlespeed, mtb, Fun
Jo Burt has spent the majority of his life riding bikes, drawing bikes and writing about bikes. When he's not scribbling pictures for the whole gamut of cycling media he writes words about them for road.cc and when he's not doing either of those he's pedaling. Then in whatever spare minutes there are in between he's agonizing over getting his socks, cycling cap and bar-tape to coordinate just so. And is quietly disappointed that yours don't He rides and races road bikes a bit, cyclo-cross bikes a lot and mountainbikes a fair bit too. Would rather be up a mountain.