By AMY JURRIES
Ogden, Utah, resident and avid mountain biker Sam Hunter was fed up with missing his pedals while riding in the hills near his home. His mountain bike pedals never seemed to be in the proper orientation when he went to clip in. A manufacturing engineer with a degree from Weber State University, Sam decided he could fix the problem himself. Sam created the Infinity Pedals prototype, clipless pedals that allow for a 360-degree entry point. Now you no longer have to struggle with your clipless pedals as you take off from that stoplight or ride into the hills.
I spoke with Sam yesterday about his Infinity Pedals invention. Sam and his clipless pedals design were the recent winners of the Utah Concept to Company Outdoor Recreation contest. Sam won $10,000 in cash and $25,000 worth of services from the likes of CFO Solutions, USTAR and Grow Utah Ventures to help him establish a proper company around his invention. These organizations will help him with everything from the legal work behind establishing a company or filing for patents to marketing and financial advice.
The Infinity Pedals design involves a new clipless pedal and cleat combination. The technology is based on a collapsible cylinder concept. The cylinder collapses as your cleat enters, then quickly rebounds to securely clip you in. The soles of your bike shoe naturally guide the cylinder to your shoe cleat and by simply kicking forward your cleat grabs on to the cylinder. Exit is achieved the same way as with normal clipless pedals by simply twisting your heel.
No special tools will be required to mount the Infinity Pedals to your bike or shoes. The clipless pedals and cleats are designed around existing bike pedal connections and the 2 bolt mountain bike, 3 bolt road bike shoe pattern.
Sam will focus on the mountain bike clipless pedal market initially then expand into road cycling. His dream is to turn Infinity Pedals into not just a one product company but a complete business around bike and drivetrain accessories. Sam plans to hit up bike shops with his invention once he settles on the final design. But with QBP, the largest retailer of bike parts and accessories, opening a distribution center in Ogden, Sam could have his wider go to market plan literally pop up right next door.
So keep your eyes out for Infinity Pedals at your local bike shop in the near future. The new company should be ready to make its official bike world debut at Interbike next fall.
—Amy Jurries is founder and editor of TheGearCaster.com, a blog dedicated to profiling emerging companies and technologies in the outdoor sports industry.