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Race Face Chester Review

Overall an affordable, well-built, and durable pedal that will last a long time
Race Face Chester
Photo: Race Face
Best Buy Award
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Price:  $50 List | $40.99 at Amazon
Compare prices at 2 resellers
Pros:  Tough and durable, won’t break the bank, good mid-range size
Cons:  Smaller platform and only 8 traction pins, no traction pins along the spindle
Manufacturer:   Race Face
By Al Morrison ⋅ Review Editor  ⋅  Mar 14, 2018
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76
OVERALL
SCORE


RANKED
#9 of 14
  • Grip and Traction - 25% 8
  • Platform - 25% 7
  • Mobility - 20% 8
  • Servicing - 15% 7
  • Weight - 15% 8

Our Verdict

The Race Face Chester is for a rider who wants a solid, durable, lightweight pedal that has a compact look and affordable price. This nylon composite pedal weighs in at 358 grams with a moderate size 110 mm x 101 mm platform. Servicing the internal cartridge bearings with DU bushings on a Chromoly steel axle is straightforward if need be for this grippy little number. There are 8 replaceable bottom loading 2.5 mm hex head pins per side that will keep this pedal feeling lively over time. The Chester is a bargain if you are looking for a pedal that offers longevity and style without the sacrifice of being more hassle than it's worth.

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Price $40.99 at Amazon
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$75 List
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Pros Tough and durable, won’t break the bank, good mid-range sizeTremendous amount of grip, reasonable price tag, easy to service, versatile, large platformUnshakeable grip, huge platform, lightweight, hidden grease port, angled traction pins, double concaveExcellent price point, well-rounded performance, service kits readily availableHigh grip, strong build, reasonable price
Cons Smaller platform and only 8 traction pins, no traction pins along the spindleLimited foot mobility, almost too much gripVery expensive, not very versatile, difficult compatibility with some cranksConvex shape might be polarizing, not the grippiestHard to relocate foot mid-decent, heavy if you do a lot of pedaling, not ideal for dirt jumping
Bottom Line Less-expensive flat pedal option for those who like to put their equipment to the testThese pedals offer unrivaled performance paired with a spectacular price tagAwesome combo of lightweight and large platform, enduro lovers will dig this grippy modelA quality composite pedal at an outstanding price pointAll-star pedal with a durable machined finish, offering exceptional grip and performance on your downhill rig
Rating Categories Race Face Chester OneUp Components Aluminum Race Face Atlas OneUp Components Composite Nukeproof Horizon Pro
Grip And Traction (25%)
8
10
9
8
9
Platform (25%)
7
9
9
8
8
Mobility (20%)
8
9
8
8
8
Servicing (15%)
7
8
7
8
7
Weight (15%)
8
8
9
8
6
Specs Race Face Chester OneUp Components... Race Face Atlas OneUp Components... Nukeproof Horizon...
Measured Weight per pair (g) 358 g 370 g 347 g 359 g 426 g
Traction Pins (per side) 8, 2.5 mm hex head bottom loading 10, 3 mm hex head bottom loading 10, 3 mm hex head- bottom loading 10, 2.5 mm hex head bottom loading 10, 2 mm hex head bottom loading with 1 mm washers per pin
Platform Dimensions (mm) 110 mm x 101 mm 114 mm x 104 mm 114 mm x 101 mm 114 mm x 104 mm 100 mm x 105 mm
Platform Profile (mm) - not including pins 14 mm leading and trailing edges, 17 mm center of spindle 8.8 mm leading and trailing edges, 12.1 mm at axle 14.5mm, 12mm double concave 13.8 mm leading and trailing edges, 16.9 mm at axle 18 mm leading and trailing edges, 16 mm at axle
Concavity 3 mm difference from effective edges to center of pedal slight convexity 2.5 mm difference from effective edges to tapered end of spindle slight convexity 2 mm difference from effective edges to middle of axle
Q Factor / Distance from cranks to furthest pin 103 mm 107.6 mm 111 mm 106 mm 110 mm
Bearings Cartridge bearings and DU bushings 4 double-sealed cartridge bearings 4 full sealed cartridge bearings per pedal DU cartridge 4 per pair
Body Material Nylon Composite Forged 6061-T6 aluminum 6061-T6 aluminum Nylon Composite Forged 6061-T6 Alloy body with CNC finishing
Pedal Wrench Type 15 mm pedal spanner, 8 mm hex 8 mm hex 8mm hex 15 mm pedal spanner, 6 mm hex 15 mm pedal spanner, 8 mm hex

Our Analysis and Test Results

The Chester is one heck of a bargain for the amount of quality you'll get from this flat pedal. Raceface has hit the nail on the head with the construction of this versatile nylon composite pedal with Chromoly steel axle that weighs in at only 358 grams. These convex flats offer decent grip, a generous platform, and inexpensive rebuild and service kits. In fact, one of our testers actually owned a pair of Chester's prior to this review for all of these reasons.

Performance Comparison



Grip/Traction


The Race Face Chester offers some stellar grip and traction as long as your foot remains evenly placed on this pedal. With only eight traction pins per side (the least amount of pins of all the pedals reviewed) and no pins along the axle body of this pedal, you had better make sure your foot is in good placement before you scream down a chunky rock garden.


The ideal spacing of the pins makes efficiency in traction quite grippy, as long as your foot is placed ideally on the platform. The biggest concern is when you get your feet muddy, as there are no traction pins located in the center of this pedal like you find on most other models.

Platform


The Chester platform size holds its own considering its slightly smaller dimensions. Race Face may not have given this pedal the largest platform, but this pedal has the portrayal of being larger than life when it comes to having a platform of only 110 mm x 101 mm. The platform is comfortable and allows the rider to have good placement, especially when doing tricks or dirt jumping. These pedals may seem a little on the small side for a rider who wears a size 10 or larger but for those who wear sizes smaller than that should have no issues whatsoever.


Our tester with smaller feet felt these pedals were a good fit, allowing for no extra wiggle room on foot placement. When pedaling uphill, the Chester's platform allows for great contact on your entire foot. Its more compact size helps keep your foot from wandering off to one side or another. While the Chester profile isn't particularly large we found it to provide a balanced feel and support even through the most technical rock gardens.

Measuring the platform of the Race Face Chester pedals.
Measuring the platform of the Race Face Chester pedals.
Photo: Al Morrison

The Chester's platform thickness is mid-range and measures in at 14 mm on the trailing edges and around 17 mm at the spindle. This thicker middle portion of the pedal can become slightly problematic when the pins fore/aft start to get worn down or are scraped off from rock strikes. However, the Chester's have a reasonably thin profile and have held up well to any pedal strikes we've encountered. While some composite pedals measure on the thicker side to combat the strength characteristics of the composite material, the Chester's never felt like a bulky pedal, and we had many more pedal strikes with other pedals we tested.

Pedal Mobility


Mobility of the Race Face Chester is on point when it comes to having a pedal planted firmly underneath your foot. The pedal provides great rotation without the nuisance of pedals spinning wildly and gouging your shins if you slip one. The Chester's reliability of being exactly where you left it while performing a trick or having to dab in a tight corner is one hundred percent. Mobility is also good while climbing with this pedal. They move freely, and the spindles do not stick when you are conquering steeper terrain.


Compact nylon composite pedal
Compact nylon composite pedal
Photo: Tasha Thomas

Servicing/Build


For such an inexpensive, highly durable pedal, Race Face put in the time when it comes to the serviceability of the Chester. The Chester has a Chromoly steel axle with cartridge bearings and DU bushings. These quality internals add to the longevity of this pedal, especially when you put it to the test. If the internals do start acting up, it's good peace of mind to know that you can rebuild them. The rebuild kit for these pedals can be found on several cycling supply websites for around $22. Not a bad price to extend the life of some pedals that can be put through the wringer and keep coming back for more.


Weight


Due to the high reliability of a nylon composite platform body and slightly smaller size compared to other models, the Race Face Chester has a pleasantly lightweight feel tipping the scales at only 358 grams. Even with such a lightweight feel, strength and durability are not lacking in this pedal. The nylon composite is strong enough to take on hard rock strikes without shedding a tear.


Value


When you're looking for style combined with price, typically price supersedes the construction and design, but that's not the case with the Raceface Chester. The composite body gives way to a flat pedal that can take strike after strike in the rocks and keep looking good. When you get a solid, well-built pedal made by a reputable company, you are standing in the winner's circle with the Chester on your bike.

Compact nylon composite pedal
Compact nylon composite pedal
Photo: Tasha Thomas


Conclusion


Nothing but happy smiles came from testing this flat pedal. The Chester offers a solid design with angled leading and trailing edges to aide in deflection of sneaky rock bites. These flats don't have a jaw-dropping price tag attached to them. Instead, they are reasonably priced and are compact in design in the lightweight division. The durability of this workhorse will keep them kicking around in your quiver for a long time.

Al Morrison