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Old 09-20-09, 01:23 PM   #1
Pharmer81
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Which pedal - PD-A530 or PD-M324

I want to get some dual platform pedals on my hybrid. I like the SPD on my road bike, but I want to be able to use regular shoes as well on my hybrid. Looking at these two pedals from Shimano, can anybody weigh in as to which is "better?" The A530's are about 200g lighter. I can get them both for the same price. Something I'm really wondering about is does the non-SPD side on the a530's afford good traction, and what is the difference in the two pedals as to how they hang with gravity?
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Old 09-20-09, 02:14 PM   #2
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I have the 324's for the same reason, and love them... I've never tried the other Shimano's. I did try the Wellgo (Forte) brand, and they weren't even close to the performance of the 324's.
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Old 09-21-09, 07:35 AM   #3
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I have a set of the M324's on my Felt Nine Comp. They are good pedals and they normally hang vertical for me, finding which side you want to use is second nature. Looking at the A530, they would not seem to have nearly the traction on the non SPD side as the M324. One item I have changed to originally for mountain biking and really like overall is the multi release SH56 clip. Good luck with either that you choose.
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Old 09-21-09, 07:47 AM   #4
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The 530's are more suitable for city and road bikes, the 324's offer more grip on the non SPD side making them better suited to hybrid and cyclocross bikes that may find things dirty.
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Old 09-21-09, 09:09 AM   #5
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Another thing I really like about the 324's, is that if you are on the "non-clip" platform side, there is no clip interference. it's just like pedalling with tennies on. I don't know about the other set of pedals.... and they look normal, too.... .
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Old 09-22-09, 09:21 PM   #6
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I have both and find them both equally functional. I personally prefer the look of the A-530s on a road style bike but that is a matter of personal taste.
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Old 09-22-09, 10:04 PM   #7
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I have both and find them both equally functional. I personally prefer the look of the A-530s on a road style bike but that is a matter of personal taste.
Do the A530's grips as well as the M324's when wearing regular shoes? How does the size of the platform compare? Is one easier to find the correct side of the pedal when riding?
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Old 09-23-09, 08:30 PM   #8
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I am so used to pulling up on the upstroke due to more often riding the SPD side that on either one I have to be careful when riding the platform side. The A530 is more comfortable for thin soled shoes while the M324 has slightly better grip on rubber sole shoes, as long as you do not lift your foot out of contact with either.

Once broken in both tend to sit with the cleat side facing the rear with the upper cage slightly behind a vertical line through the pedal spindle. Approach from behind the pedal with the foot to use the cleat and from in front to get the platform.
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Old 09-23-09, 09:17 PM   #9
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I have both pedals as well. I use the M324s on my commuter (Trek Valencia) and the A530s on my Trek 7.5. I rarely use either bike without cleats so can't give a great overview of what it's like to pedal with redular shoes. The few times I have used regular shoes I have thought the "platform side" of both was sufficient. I didn't perceive a huge difference.
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Old 09-23-09, 11:29 PM   #10
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Thanks for all of the great info. My last question before deciding is to those of you who have both, are the physical dimensions of the platform different between the two different? I'm sorry for all of the questions, but the of the LBS's around here have the a530's for me to look at.
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Old 09-24-09, 08:03 AM   #11
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I haven't measured and am not at home right now so can't measure the A530s on my 7.5. That said, I'm not sure that measurements / specification is too relevant. Shimano posts pretty detailed technical docs on their website so you might be able to find exact measurements there. At the end of the day the platforms side of both are fine for regular riding. And since you are buying these, I assume you intend to use the SPD side for longer or faster or some specific rides, which is probably the only time when any deficiencies in the platform side would become evident.

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Old 09-24-09, 08:05 AM   #12
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I actually really like my hybrid pedals. Platform/Clipin made by wellgo. But I ride both clipped in or not so it made sense for me.
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Old 09-24-09, 01:40 PM   #13
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The platform on the A-530s is longer by about 3/4" while the 324 platform is a hair wider. Think of the 324 platform side design and size as close to a standard pedal designed for toe clips while the 530 platform is closer to the long one found on some road platform pedals.

The A-530 platform is designed to give a larger contact area with the shoe.
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Old 09-30-09, 09:55 PM   #14
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I went with the a530's and put them on tonight. I love them. The non-cleated side gives very good traction with my tennis shoes, and the cleated side is very easy to get in and out of. They look really nice, too. Thanks to everybody for the input.
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Old 10-01-09, 10:07 PM   #15
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Congrats on the new pedals. The A530s do "look cooler" than the M324s. Cheers, Matt.
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Old 10-02-09, 12:35 PM   #16
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Why all the Shimanos? I've got a pair of Crank Brothers Candy SLs on order. Anyone tried some Crank Brothers stuff?
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Old 10-02-09, 12:53 PM   #17
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Why all the Shimanos? I've got a pair of Crank Brothers Candy SLs on order. Anyone tried some Crank Brothers stuff?
I've got shimano pedals on another bike and just want to use one pair of shoes. This way, I know I won't have any problems with the cletes not working like they should.
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Old 10-02-09, 08:08 PM   #18
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Why all the Shimanos? I've got a pair of Crank Brothers Candy SLs on order. Anyone tried some Crank Brothers stuff?
I have never used them but have seen too many posts mentioning durability problems with the Crank Brothers pedals. The weak point of the design seems to be the parts which grip the shoe cleats breaking.
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