FUNN Ripper Pedals 2018 Mountain Bike Review

FUNN Ripper Pedals 2018

Reviews / Pedals

FUNN 27,060

At A Glance

The Ripper is Funn’s latest clip-in pedal to hit the scene and replaces the Mamba as their go-to twin sided platform, the Mamba being now sold as a one-sided clip-in pedal. With vital feedback coming from rowdy pro downhill riders such as Phill Atwill, Funn has come up with a more race-focused platform pedal with an emphasis on more shoe contact and more reliable cleat-to-pedal engagement. With an SPD compatible cleat, a mud-shedding profile and designed to be easily self-serviced, the new Ripper is likely to appeal to a wide range of gravity focussed riders.

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Sporting a similarly short CrMo axle like the Mamba, the Ripper boasts a single sealed bearing on the inboard side and a DU bush on the outboard end. The main update over the old Mamba is the floating cleat (or Angular Engagement System as Funn like to call it). Now, this is by no means a new concept, but it is a tried and tested way to make clipping in as easy and consistent as possible whilst offering excellent rubber to pin contact. Using a spring-loaded central body, the SPD cage is angled up from the main pedal body, which puts the main hook of the mechanism into an easier to hit location for the cleat.

The pedals are drilled to take 4 pins on each side (one in each corner). They only come in one depth and no spares are provided. This gives only two options open depending on preference and shoe style. The Rippers are available in 6 different anodised colours and weigh in at around 570 grams for the pair, so by no means the lightest on the market.

Details-
• Aluminum platform, 4130 steel shaft.
• DU bushing inside, cartridge bearing outside.
• Platform: Width - 93mm, length - 102mm, thickness - 21mm
• Cleat: SPD (Shimano compatible)
• Four replaceable pins, each side
• Red / Orange / Blue / Green / Black / Grey
• Weight (actual): 560 grams
• MSRP: $140 USD / £115 GBP

On The Trail

Straight out of the box these pedals felt a little bit stiffer on rotation than I’m used to, however after the first handful of rides that sorted itself out. They still don’t rotate freely but they do easily kick into position. Leaving the alloy pins in the box to begin with (and making sure not to lose them as there are no spares provided), I was really impressed with the ease of clipping in. The ‘Angular Engagement System’ certainly helps to guide the front of the cleat into the cage which is held up and out of the pedal body by a spring mechanism.

Without the pins, I didn’t feel that I was getting the best traction so I quickly and easily fitted them using the small wrench which is provided. There are only one set of pins provided which keeps your choice simple, but your fine tuning possibilities limited, a selection of different depth pins would be a really nice touch.

With the pins in place, I had varying success of clipping in depending on what shoes I was wearing. Some Giro shoes, for example, have a more concave sole where the cleat sits higher inside the shoe, which definitely worked better without the pins. My FiveTen’s, however, worked a treat with the pins in so I have stuck to this combo ever since.

Adjusting the cage tension is nice and easy using a 3mm hex key, and the range of adjustment is good. Once I was set up with the pins in place, the right shoes for the job and the tension adjustments set to my liking, it didn’t take me long to really start enjoying the Ripper pedals. The nice big (but not overly big) platform provides a superb feeling of stability across the whole foot. I know it sounds a bit cliché, but the stability really does make you feel at one with the bike.

One of the things which has impressed the most is the speed of engagement. The shoe just finds the cleat nearly every time as if there was a strong magnet in place, quite impressive. Don’t get me wrong, I’ve used clip-in pedals before which provide a similar feel of traction and stability, yet the sacrifice has usually been the difficulty in finding the clip at speed. This is where it becomes clear that Funn has designed a pedal fit for World Cup Downhill and World Enduro races. That said, if you don’t manage to clip in immediately the platform and pins will provide enough grip and support to help you 'wing it' through the rough and gnarly until you get the chance to re-engage. If you end up running the cleats quite tight with the pins in there does seem to be a bit of resistance on the out-clip, something which I have got used to but would prefer a smoother action.

The clip mechanism itself is modelled on Shimano’s SPD cleat platform. That means you can use Funn’s own cleats that feature 6° of angular float, or you can run Shimano SPD cleats with 4° of float. The release angle with either is 18°, so it requires a considered twist of the heel to pop out of the pedal. This is good for riding loose, rocky and fast-paced singletrack where you need to get those hips working – you can get quite dynamic on the pedals without fear of accidentally un-clipping.

After several months of regular use over rough and rocky terrain, the Ripper pedals have held up reasonably well. The machined alloy platform has held strong, but some of the alloy pins have been battered to a point where the wrench head won’t fit to undo or tighten anymore. The floating cleat springs have just started to stiffen up and have responded well to a bit of oil, and the bearings are just starting to feel a bit rough. Fortunately, the Rippers are simple to self-service, all the instructions of how to do so are on their website.

Overall

Up there with the old Shimano DX’s, the Funn Rippers are a great platform pedal which offers superb stability even for those with larger sized feet and shoes. The floating cage combined with the large platform makes clipping in super easy, which provides that extra bit of confidence when things get gnarly and finding the pedal is at its most important. However, the pedals aren’t the lightest and the mechanism could be smoother for unclipping, plus a wider range of pin sizes would allow a greater variety of adjustment to help fine-tune the fit to everyone’s personal preference. All-in-all though, a solid downhill/all-mountain/enduro pedal which isn’t far from perfection.

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By Ewen Turner
Ewen Turner is a self-confessed bike geek from Kendal in the Lake District of England. He runs a coaching and guiding business up there and has a plethora of knowledge about bikes with an analytical approach to testing. His passion for bicycles is infectious, and he’s a ripper on the trails who prefers to fit his working life around his time on the bike.

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