Drilled pedal covers: cool or dumb? | Garage Rescue Miata

David S.
Update by David S. Wallens to the Mazda Miata project car
Sep 6, 2021

Photography Credit: David S. Wallens

What’s your take on those drilled, bolt-on pedal covers: a great way to interface with the car or just some extra stuff to get in the way?

We originally ran this set on a Sentra SE-R that we had from 1992 through 1995. We can’t remember the brand, the source or even the situation.

Since then, these covers have sat in a plastic bag, periodically getting in the way.

They recently got in the way again. But this time, we thought, what if we installed them? That would remove them from being in the way, right? But would we still like them?

So we put them on the Miata. The pedals feature spring-loaded mounts and just clamp into place. The entire job took just a few minutes.

And, yeah, we’re digging them: more grip, more foot area and just a more “alive” interface with the car. Wish we could tell you more about them, but nice to put some parts back into service after 25-plus years in stasis.

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dean1484
dean1484 GRM+ Memberand MegaDork
9/3/21 8:42 a.m.

Don't care one way or the other. What is much more important is grip between your shoe and the peddle. I really like these. They have hard rubber nubs that grip to just about any shoe superbly. 
 

 

This car of mine is paddle shifters so no third peddle. 

dean1484
dean1484 GRM+ Memberand MegaDork
9/3/21 8:48 a.m.

Oh we did use peddle plates in some of the race cars to make heal and toe better but in racing conditions we found you need positive attachment like bolts through the peddle or welding things in place. Ones from the speed isle in the auto parts store that clipped in place or were a friction fit or even used bolts to clamp them in place always come loose or came off and that can get exciting for a driver diving in to a corner. 

Appleseed
Appleseed MegaDork
9/3/21 8:52 a.m.

Dean Moon knew the truth.

RadBarchetta
RadBarchetta New Reader
9/3/21 9:25 a.m.

PEDAL

/endrant

Toyman01 + Sized and
Toyman01 + Sized and GRM+ Memberand MegaDork
9/3/21 9:47 a.m.

I'm going with shoes being as much or more important than pedals. I don't ever recall having problems with slick pedals. 

I'm not a fan of the drilled ones. That's a form over function purchase with money that could be better spent on something that actually makes the car better.

Disclaimer: This is my opinion. Don't take it personally. If you like the drilled ones, by all means, use them. I don't hate you for it or think you are stupid. 

Edit: Are those held on with zip screws? Having sharp pointy things down there with your feet in a race car falls under inadvisable and generally a bad idea. 

350z247
350z247 Reader
9/3/21 9:55 a.m.

It's gonna be a "no" from me dawg...

AWSX1686 (Forum Supporter)
AWSX1686 (Forum Supporter) GRM+ Memberand UltraDork
9/3/21 9:56 a.m.

I got a set along with some other parts and put them on my NB miata. I kinda like them, but I wouldn't really go spending much money on them either. 

Keith Tanner
Keith Tanner GRM+ Memberand MegaDork
9/3/21 10:00 a.m.

We actually did some testing on ours, and they have more grip than rubber or smooth metal pedal when you have wet shoes. 50% more grip when dry and 30% more grip when wet. The important thing is that they're not just drilled, they have ridges.

 

Robbie (Forum Supporter)
Robbie (Forum Supporter) GRM+ Memberand MegaDork
9/3/21 10:15 a.m.

Another important consideration is you can use them to make some pedals closer together by shifting the cover over a bit. I wouldn't suggest this for brake or clutch, but you CAN get the gas pedal closer for heel toe action with the correctly placed gas pedal cover. 

And that can be a real performance improver too. 

Finally, wasn't there a bit about the McLaren F1 having the pedals drilled out to the absolute possible minumum weight while still meeting the force requirements? That's cool too. 

Robbie (Forum Supporter)
Robbie (Forum Supporter) GRM+ Memberand MegaDork
9/3/21 10:17 a.m.

Which gives me an idea - assuming the factory pedal is flat steel (after removing the rubber cover), what about drilling it and using something to curl the lip of the holes up? Increase traction and reduce weight. 

Cooter
Cooter UberDork
9/3/21 10:46 a.m.

In reply to Robbie (Forum Supporter) :

Dimple Dies

Robbie (Forum Supporter)
Robbie (Forum Supporter) GRM+ Memberand MegaDork
9/3/21 11:04 a.m.

In reply to Cooter :

That is exactly the word I was looking for but couldn't place!

jerel77494
jerel77494 New Reader
9/3/21 12:45 p.m.

If they're rigidly mounted, fine.  But if they move around at all, they're useless if not dangerous.

chaparral
chaparral Dork
9/3/21 1:13 p.m.

Plain steel pedals with holes dimpled to the driver's foot side are perfect - very rough on soles, but we're here for a good time not a long time.

Streetwiseguy
Streetwiseguy MegaDork
9/3/21 1:28 p.m.
RadBarchetta said:

PEDAL

/endrant

Thank you.  If you ever write a book about pedals, I will help you peddle it.

84FSP
84FSP UltraDork
9/3/21 1:38 p.m.

I like them for the ability to adjust pedal position for my big feet.  My friends do give me e36m3 for them though.

cmcgregor (Forum Supporter)
cmcgregor (Forum Supporter) SuperDork
9/3/21 1:57 p.m.

The rubber covers on my clutch and brake pedals died, so I stuck on some skateboard griptape I had sitting around. Works great.

scooterfrog
scooterfrog Reader
9/3/21 2:16 p.m.

i made my own using some aluminum diamond plate (from spashgaurds)

cut with a dremel and bent a little bit.

then bolted through the pedal,  not clamped.

Junghole
Junghole SuperDork
9/3/21 2:19 p.m.

Nothing hurts worse than a heel/toe in wet shoes that has your toes slide off the brake, miss the shift, mess up the braking point, AND have the brake pedal come swinging back at your shin.... and the whole time the instructor is yelling "what are you doing?!?!?"

I never went back to that DMV. 

David S. Wallens
David S. Wallens Editorial Director
9/3/21 2:33 p.m.

Has anyone ever removed the rubber covers and just run skateboard grip tape?

AnthonyGS (Forum Supporter)
AnthonyGS (Forum Supporter) SuperDork
9/3/21 3:08 p.m.

I strongly prefer the ones that you need to drill holes and bolt them down solidly.  I'm kind of looking for something like that for the MR2.  

David S. Wallens
David S. Wallens Editorial Director
9/3/21 3:12 p.m.

In reply to Junghole :

Ba dum tsss.

Stefan (Forum Supporter)
Stefan (Forum Supporter) GRM+ Memberand MegaDork
9/3/21 3:21 p.m.
Junghole said:

Nothing hurts worse than a heel/toe in wet shoes that has your toes slide off the brake, miss the shift, mess up the braking point, AND have the brake pedal come swinging back at your shin.... and the whole time the instructor is yelling "what are you doing?!?!?"

I never went back to that DMV. 

Oh you guy - oh you

Carsandbikes
Carsandbikes Reader
9/3/21 3:30 p.m.

I bought a set for a heavily modified Civic hatchback.   I thought that it was the only car I owned, up to that point, where these fit in.  I also had a " knockoff " Mugen style metal shift knob.  Strangely, I can't say for sure that I ever installed the pedal covers as they struck me as making the pedals MORE, not LESS slippery.

dean1484
dean1484 GRM+ Memberand MegaDork
9/3/21 3:47 p.m.
David S. Wallens said:

Has anyone ever removed the rubber covers and just run skateboard grip tape?

Yes but it was black oxide waterproof sandpaper with epoxy

Oldboy Speedwell
Oldboy Speedwell New Reader
9/3/21 4:59 p.m.

 

I really really like the OMP pedal set I went with --- excellent feels + everyman affordability.

Actually bought 2 sets so I could use another gas pedal to modify position and raise the dead pedal to be closer to the clutch pedal, stock R53 dead pedal is a bit too short for my comfort. A couple of aftermarket deadpedals are available but they block the fuse panel and require removal just to open it up, so a good side benefit of using the OMP is that is slightly offset enough which allows easy opening of fuse panel door.

 

In this pic the deadpedal appears to be magically levitating...

...but it's just because I painted the extender spacers black and they steathily disappear! LOL

 Had to go hobo with Home Depot fasteners and not happy about the phillips head but hey whatever, meant to change them but I'm lazy, was also intending to fit a black R50 cover plate to pretty it up, but again, too lazy and more pressing issues seem to pop up.

cmcgregor (Forum Supporter)
cmcgregor (Forum Supporter) SuperDork
9/3/21 5:02 p.m.
David S. Wallens said:

Has anyone ever removed the rubber covers and just run skateboard grip tape?

cmcgregor (Forum Supporter) said:

The rubber covers on my clutch and brake pedals died, so I stuck on some skateboard griptape I had sitting around. Works great.

yes cheeky 

Wally (Forum Supporter)
Wally (Forum Supporter) GRM+ Memberand MegaDork
9/3/21 5:11 p.m.

One of the early 70s corvette roadracers we restored at an old job had coarse steel mesh tack welded to the brake and clutch pedal. No one was sliding off them. 

preach (fs)
preach (fs) GRM+ Memberand HalfDork
9/3/21 5:16 p.m.
dean1484 said:

Don't care one way or the other. What is much more important is grip between your shoe and the peddle. I really like these. They have hard robber nubs that grip to just about any shoe superbly. 
 

This is similar to a stock 987 Cayman. Add a pair of slip on Vans and you'll be in heaven.

hybridmomentspass
hybridmomentspass Reader
9/4/21 9:26 a.m.

Running celica gts brake and clutch, they're the aluminum with rubber bits. I like them.

I picked up a lexus is300 throttle pedal to match, not installed yet. Im lazy, parts pile up.

Datsun310Guy
Datsun310Guy MegaDork
9/4/21 9:59 a.m.

From the factory?  Yes

after market? No, yes, no.  Well, yes  

914Driver
914Driver GRM+ Memberand MegaDork
9/4/21 1:06 p.m.

David, I've done skate board tape once.  It was grippy, too grippy sometimes when your feet are flying from pedal to pedal.  I've also cut grooves in the pedals (no rubber cover) and more than once covered them with thin aluminum diamond plate.  Nice looking nubs that work well; I've actually sent some of that material out in the annual Christmas box swap.  Hang in there, you may end up with it some year.  =~ )

L5wolvesf
L5wolvesf HalfDork
9/4/21 1:14 p.m.
Wally (Forum Supporter) said:

One of the early 70s corvette roadracers we restored at an old job had coarse steel mesh tack welded to the brake and clutch pedal. No one was sliding off them. 

I've seen that too - extruded metal.

Robbie (Forum Supporter)
Robbie (Forum Supporter) GRM+ Memberand MegaDork
9/4/21 10:01 p.m.
L5wolvesf said:
Wally (Forum Supporter) said:

One of the early 70s corvette roadracers we restored at an old job had coarse steel mesh tack welded to the brake and clutch pedal. No one was sliding off them. 

I've seen that too - extruded metal.

It's a great idea, would be easy to wrap some chicken wire around a pedal and tack it on.

billy69
billy69 New Reader
9/29/21 2:16 p.m.

whats the fix when you have a size 15 shoe and on a automatic i hit the brake and gas at the same time (very scarey sometimes) on a clutch car my toe hits the bottom of the dash close out!! 

Lof8 - Andy
Lof8 - Andy GRM+ Memberand SuperDork
9/29/21 3:09 p.m.
David S. Wallens said:

Has anyone ever removed the rubber covers and just run skateboard grip tape?

I do this with almost everything I own.

thatsnowinnebago
thatsnowinnebago GRM+ Memberand UltraDork
9/29/21 3:48 p.m.
Keith Tanner said:

We actually did some testing on ours, and they have more grip than rubber or smooth metal pedal when you have wet shoes. 50% more grip when dry and 30% more grip when wet. The important thing is that they're not just drilled, they have ridges.

 

Square left in 50 caution ocean! - Author of How To Build a High Performance Mazda Miata

David S. Wallens
David S. Wallens Editorial Director
9/30/21 3:25 p.m.

I don't remember the pedal covers that I installed being that grippy back in the day, and figure that I was wearing Vans then, too. But I'm still happy with them. 

BA5
BA5 GRM+ Memberand Reader
9/30/21 5:04 p.m.

Another +1. For the skateboard grip tape.

Works good, I like it!

Tyler H (Forum Supporter)
Tyler H (Forum Supporter) GRM+ Memberand UberDork
10/1/21 8:10 a.m.

They're great for cars that have skinny OE pedals when you like to drive around barefoot.  Other than that, primarily aesthetic. 

Grip tape will save your life in the rain and cut a lot of time off driver changes when applied to the floorboard of a race car, though.  

David S. Wallens
David S. Wallens Editorial Director
10/5/21 11:44 a.m.

In reply to Tyler H (Forum Supporter) :

That is a good point about grip tape on the floor. Nothing graceful about trying to get in or out of a race car and having your feet slip out from beneath you. 

David S. Wallens
David S. Wallens Editorial Director
11/5/21 5:01 p.m.

Update: I figured out the source of the pedal covers. 

BITD, I worked in Atlanta for a company called Automod. We were a warehouse distributor for companies that sold parts for race cars and sports cars--think Momo, Nardi, Hella, Koni, K&N, Weber, Pace Setter, Kamei, Zender, Amco, etc., etc. 

There was another company in Atlanta called Sport Auto. I'm pretty sure they were one of our customers. Anyway, I came across their catalog yesterday while looking for an issue of Sports Car Graphic.

And that's when it hit me. 

No idea on the brand, but now I remember getting the covers from them.

Just for fun, some more pics from the catalog.

David S. Wallens
David S. Wallens Editorial Director
1/14/22 8:56 p.m.

So, I'm pretty sure that I found the manufacturer of the Miata's pedal covers: Razo. 

I was looking for something else and came across their old catalog online. You can read the company's history here

Plus their instructions seem to jibe with what I have. 

Interesting that the photo in the Auto Sport catalog shows the brake and clutch reversed from Razo's catalog. Do I swap the covers? I dunno.

I didn't install the gas pedal cover because it's kind of a pain and I'm happy with the stock Miata cover. Maybe one day. 

David S. Wallens
David S. Wallens Editorial Director
1/14/22 8:59 p.m.

In 2005 I visited Razo/Carmate while in Japan for the Tokyo Auto Salon. We got the nickel tour, played with r/c cars in their warehouse, and went for rides with some people (employees?) through the neighborhood.

Here are some pics:

 

David S. Wallens
David S. Wallens Editorial Director
1/14/22 9:01 p.m.

And here are pics from the drive through the neighborhood:

BA5
BA5 GRM+ Memberand Reader
1/15/22 1:41 a.m.

Razo!? 

It's been a long time since I've heard that name!  They we're pretty popular back in the late 90's/early 2000's

GCrites80s
GCrites80s HalfDork
1/16/22 8:49 p.m.
David S. Wallens said:

No idea on the brand, but now I remember getting the covers from them.

Interesting part numbers.

Worker: "Thanks for calling Sport Auto! How may I help you?
 

Customer: "I want BQPEDALAUT! And SKMMSUE!"

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