Garmin powermeter pedals (SPD)?

I’m looking at buying the Garmin Rally XC200 SPD powermeter pedals so I can easily swap them between my MTB and gravel bike. A couple questions:

  1. Does anyone have experience with these yet? I’m nervous about how many times I knock my pedals against rocks when MTB’ing.

  2. For my use (i.e. easily swapping between very different bikes) is there a system I haven’t considered yet? Crank or chainset based is too much of a hassle to swap over. Hub based isn’t going to work. Anything I’m missing?

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Hey Wade. I can’t comment on the Rally’s, but I have the Vector 3’s.

After over coming the battery drop out issues and Garmin finally sorting that mess out by manufacturing new battery terminals and doors (that sucked up nearly 18 months of my ownership of the pedals) they’ve been bulletproof.

I too bought them with the view of swapping them easily between bikes, which I do.

I can’t comment on their accuracy- nothing to compare them with other than a KICKR. But I’m not super anal on the data - to just have an idea is good enough for me!

On robustness, I had an off there over the winter on some ice and the right pedal took its first hit. I thought it was ok until I next had to replace batteries. The pedal body got scuffed and it damaged some of the thread that the doors go onto to secure the batteries. After a bit of craft knife butchery and far too many minutes spent trying to get the doors in without cross threading, I got there. However, I’d say I’d don’t have many more times of doing that without cross threading and renderings it useless. A new body is about €100-€120 so not gut wrenching, but not small change.

I’d hope that the SPD versions of the Rally are more robust considering they are aimed at off-road use.

So in conclusion, great power meter option for switching between bikes easily - just don’t crash….

That’s good feedback @martinsmith86. Thanks!

I’ve got a pair, they’ve been great so far.

I may have nerded out a little hard when I first got them, compared the to my SRAM AXS chainring PM, as well as some Rotor 2inpower cranks and Kickr. All was as you’d expect, lined up perfectly.

I got them for the same reason as you, to switch between bikes. Have moved them between gravel bike, rigid MTB and MTB dually without any fuss. Mainly just followed DC Rainmaker’s advice of doing a good hard sprint after installing them to get them to bed in, then do a calibration, and you’re ready to roll. (which I just do at the start of the first ride after swapping them)

Have clipped a few rocks with them, nothing really hard though, but they’ve just bounced off like any other SPD pedal I’ve used. No connectivity or data issues or anything so far afterward.
The only thing I’ve noticed is they don’t unclip quite as easily as regular SPDs. It’s not a spring tension thing, they’re just a little stickier? Nothing that’s going to cause you to call “TIMBER” when you stop at a set of lights, but noticable over SPDs.
They also have the option to put on a pair of SPD-SL bodies down the road if you want to make them a soley road pedal.

As for other options, the only other option I came across looking for the same thing was the Favero Assioma hack that GP Lama did. Everything else was crank or spider based as you said.

Thought about it, but the idea of having to modify shoes didn’t appeal as I also use my shoes for hike-a-bike when backpacking, and didn’t want to comprimise the sole.

So TLDR? I’d say buy 'em if you can.

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Indirect experience, another rider in one of my groups has a set. I used to do gear tests/reviews and am naturally inquisitive, or nosy. But anyway.
He has been riding them for a couple of months now and is really happy, his purchase decision was formed around swapping them between bikes, which he does in a couple of minutes. The swaps are between his full suss bike and gravel bike, both of which see a fair amount of hard riding, which does include the odd rock strike. Thus far no issues.
The basic build mechanism and profile is quite close to that of Shimano XT, in fact he still uses his Shimano cleats. So on that basis, it seems a solid baseline. To be safe a bit of vaseline around the axle nut helps with a bit of extra weatherproofing in the wet.

Out of all the options I haven’t come across anything as hassle free or as quick to swap between steeds. As mentioned the guy in my group manages to do so chop chop. Although come to think of it there is an Italian brand with power meter axles that can be retrofitted to existing pedal cages. So perhaps that’s an option for your existing pedals that you’re so connected with.

Speaking for myself, if I were looking for a power meter option for ease of use and for a quick switch-a-rooney between steeds. These would be top of my list currently.

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I started with the Assioma/Xpedo hack. I DID have to cut my shoe tread. They worked amazingly well and were very accurate, but squeaked horribly. I’ve chatted with several others who did it too and none of them said it was bad enough to bother them or that they just expect SPD to squeak. I’ve never had that problem before and I’ve been on spd since the late 90s.

I switched to the Garmin and haven’t had any squeaking issues that dry lube doesn’t fix. They have a pretty good amount of stack. It doesn’t bother me, but I’ve attached a few pictures of them next to the Xpedo body I used with the Assioma for reference.

Where the Garmin aren’t perfect for me has been that the power readings were significantly different from my OG Neo and the Favero (5% or more). I’ve had to go into the software and skew the numbers to get them closer to the others. Also, you have to cinch them down VERY tight in the crank, which makes me reluctant to swap between my mtb and gravel bikes, which was my original plan. I’m actually not sure I could remove them without help from my LBS.

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Thanks @kevin_miller! Great insight. Out of curiosity, why do the Garmin pedals need to be tightened so much?

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I bought a single sided pair early in the year to put on my gravel bike for touring. And swapped it onto my fixie for a while - after all who doesn’t want pedals that cost more than the bike? It seems to read about the same as my Quark based on perceived effort and dealt with mud and gravel, falling over and general neglect. So far so good.

I don’t know the answer, but it’s in the Garmin install manual. Others have said it makes a big difference in accuracy. See step 5. Rally RS/RK/XC - Installing the Pedals

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@wade.wallace Not sure about Australian pricing but in the US you can get 2 Power2Max spider based PM’s for about the same price as the Garmin pedals. Not sure if you have compatible cranks but you could keep your existing pedals.

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35nm? Shimano recommends 35-55nm on SPD-SL so nothing unusual there. The old Garmin vector 3’s also recommend 35nm and after the door debacle got sorted mine have been utterly reliable and without issue (also had to make sure to use a reputable battery!) They also match other power devices I’ve used perfectly. I swap my vector 3s between bikes regularly.

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I tend to leave pedals loose enough that I can get them off easily. I have cycling arms. :rofl:

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