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Old 2009-11-17, 10:59 PM   #1
Luderart
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Is there any way to correct an off-center wheel?

It is 2-2.5mm off center towards the left. And I think it is also slanting towards the left by that much. I don't know whether this is an acceptable manufacturer's defect. Do you think that I am entitled to a replacement. I have a much harder time turning towards the right and also my right thigh always tightens up after 30 minutes or so of riding. I think both of these must have to do with the slight leftward slant of the wheel. To be sure, I have been riding for only about 7 months and still have a lot to learn.
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Old 2009-11-17, 11:26 PM   #2
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Warranty-wise, It depends. I know that Torker doesn't warranty bent stuff, only broken. Most bike companies warranty that stuff for a year, and with the exception of KH and Nimbus.....most Unis are made by bike companies.

What brand uni is it?
How long have you owned it?
Are you the original owner?

A wheel can't "slant" without being straight up wobbly, unless of course it's mounted wrong. It's either out of true or out of dish. Bring it to your LBS, they'll tell you which it is. Re-truing a wheel runs about $20-40 and redishing costs $50+ at our shop.
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Old 2009-11-18, 01:12 AM   #3
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I would check to see if it's the dish or if the frame is bent. The easiest way to check dish is to take the wheel out of the frame and put it back in the other way. If it is still close to the same side it was before, then it's the frame. If it has changed to the other side then it's the wheel. If the wheel is out of dish it can be corrected easily at a bike shop, or by tensioning the spokes on the side with extra space.

If it's the frame a good bike shop should be able to straighten it; although it won't be as easy as a bike fork as the tools are designed to clamp into the dropouts.
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Old 2009-11-18, 01:36 AM   #4
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Those are not the only options. Have a bike shop check your wheel. Most places near me it only costs 5-15 dollars.
When the wheel is true, if it leans slightly to the side the frame one side of the frame may be slightly shorter. I have had that problem w/ several unis and I make shims out of an aluminum can to even it out. Also, I had an lx frame bend, and torker replaced it for free.
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Old 2009-11-18, 01:36 AM   #5
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I had this problem with my KH24. CBS, (see the beginners... today I, thread) whom I have not seen posting in the past couple of months, also had this exact same problem with her KH24. I took mine to the LBS, paid for the fix, and found it was no better when I got home. I bought a spoke wrench set... then bought another spoke wrench set that actually had a wrench the right size, and started to tighten spokes on the "loose" side. By the time the wheel started to straighten up, I had rounded the square ends of several spokes.

Funnily enough, I have 3 cheaper unis that all came with perfect wheels. I know everyone gushes about the quality of KH unis, but...
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Old 2009-11-18, 03:02 AM   #6
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Originally Posted by Luderart View Post
It is 2-2.5mm off center towards the left. And I think it is also slanting towards the left by that much. I don't know whether this is an acceptable manufacturer's defect. Do you think that I am entitled to a replacement. I have a much harder time turning towards the right and also my right thigh always tightens up after 30 minutes or so of riding. I think both of these must have to do with the slight leftward slant of the wheel.
My good man, are you sure you haven't suffered a stroke?
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Old 2009-11-18, 03:33 AM   #7
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Originally Posted by OneWheelLess View Post
Those are not the only options. Have a bike shop check your wheel. Most places near me it only costs 5-15 dollars.
When the wheel is true, if it leans slightly to the side the frame one side of the frame may be slightly shorter. I have had that problem w/ several unis and I make shims out of an aluminum can to even it out. Also, I had an lx frame bend, and torker replaced it for free.
It's true that it could be that one leg is longer than the other, but flipping the wheel around should still tell you if it's the wheel or the frame. I think it would be hard to tell the difference between a bent frame and one with different length legs. An easy way to check the frame would be to put a long seatpost, or pipe, through from the bottom. Then you could see if the legs are equal distances from the it. If the bearing holders are an equal distance then it seems like you have two different length legs. Alternately you could use a plumb bob and align it to the seat tube.

There are tools for bike forks that make this kind of stuff very easy to do. Unfortunately, I don't know if anyone makes the same tools for unicycles. It wouldn't be too difficult to make the tools, but I don't know of many bike shops that would spend the money on something so niche.
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Old 2009-11-18, 03:44 AM   #8
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You could put a thin piece of metal on top of the bearing to shim it to center.
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Old 2009-11-18, 11:55 AM   #9
Luderart
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Originally Posted by DoctorPunch View Post
What brand uni is it?
How long have you owned it?
Are you the original owner?

A wheel can't "slant" without being straight up wobbly, unless of course it's mounted wrong. It's either out of true or out of dish. Bring it to your LBS, they'll tell you which it is. Re-truing a wheel runs about $20-40 and redishing costs $50+ at our shop.
It's a Club 24" UDC.

I have owned it for about 7 months and I am the original owner. I ordered it from the German website of unicycle.com (http://www.einradladen.net/shop/shopping_cart.php).

What's out of dish?

I already took it to my LBS and he couldn't do anything. He had said he could straighten it by removing and putting it back. But he doesn't have any experience with unicycles, just bicycles.
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Old 2009-11-18, 12:51 PM   #10
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Originally Posted by jtrops View Post
I would check to see if it's the dish or if the frame is bent. The easiest way to check dish is to take the wheel out of the frame and put it back in the other way. If it is still close to the same side it was before, then it's the frame. If it has changed to the other side then it's the wheel. If the wheel is out of dish it can be corrected easily at a bike shop, or by tensioning the spokes on the side with extra space.

If it's the frame a good bike shop should be able to straighten it; although it won't be as easy as a bike fork as the tools are designed to clamp into the dropouts.
Thanks for this great advice. I just put the wheel on the other way and to my surprise there is no longer any off-centeredness or bent! So how do you explain this? What was the cause of the off-centeredness if it was neither the dish nor the frame?

But now I have another problem. I have to remove the cranks and change their places. But I wonder, why do the cranks have to be marked left and right? What's the difference anyway? If I change only the places of the pedals wouldn't that be enough?

Last edited by Luderart; 2009-11-18 at 12:53 PM.
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Old 2009-11-18, 03:22 PM   #11
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Originally Posted by Luderart View Post
Thanks for this great advice. I just put the wheel on the other way and to my surprise there is no longer any off-centeredness or bent! So how do you explain this? What was the cause of the off-centeredness if it was neither the dish nor the frame?

But now I have another problem. I have to remove the cranks and change their places. But I wonder, why do the cranks have to be marked left and right? What's the difference anyway? If I change only the places of the pedals wouldn't that be enough?
So your frame is just slightly off, and the wheel was originally trued (dished slightly) to compensate.
As far as the cranks and pedals go, the right hand crank has right handed threads and the left hand crank has left handed threads where the pedal screws in. The pedals are threaded to match, making it impossible to just switch the pedals w/o destroying the cranks.
The reason for the threads running the direction they do is to keep the pedals tight. If they are backwards the pedals probably work loose, and you could destroy your cranks.
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Old 2009-11-18, 03:43 PM   #12
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Originally Posted by Luderart View Post

What's out of dish?

But now I have another problem. I have to remove the cranks and change their places. But I wonder, why do the cranks have to be marked left and right? What's the difference anyway? If I change only the places of the pedals wouldn't that be enough?
Out of dish means that the rim isn't centered between the bearings. On a bicycle wheel the dish should be centered between the locknuts on the hub. The true of the wheel is that it's running straight, and the concentricity is that it is without flat spots or hops.

Your pedals, and cranks, are right and left threaded to prevent them from loosening when riding. The right one has to be on the right side, and the left has to be on the left. So you can't just move the pedals. It should be a quick repair for the bike shop to remove the cranks and switch the sides. If you want to do it yourself you will need a crank extractor. You should be able to pick one up fairly cheaply, and then you will have it if you ever need it again.
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Old 2009-11-18, 04:09 PM   #13
Luderart
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Originally Posted by Luderart View Post
Thanks for this great advice. I just put the wheel on the other way and to my surprise there is no longer any off-centeredness or bent! So how do you explain this? What was the cause of the off-centeredness if it was neither the dish nor the frame?

But now I have another problem. I have to remove the cranks and change their places. But I wonder, why do the cranks have to be marked left and right? What's the difference anyway? If I change only the places of the pedals wouldn't that be enough?
I had the cranks-pedals switched at my LBS.

I checked it more closely, and I found that there is a 1-1.5mm off-centeredness towards the right this time. So before I changed the direction of the wheel, there was a 2-2.5mm off-centeredness towards the left, now there is a slighter off-centeredness towards the right. So from what I was told, I understand that the wheel still needs to be trued to correct the 1-1.5mm off-centeredness to the right. Am I right?

Last edited by Luderart; 2009-11-18 at 04:10 PM.
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Old 2009-11-18, 05:35 PM   #14
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Honestly, I don't think 1-2mm will make much difference in the tracking of a unicycle, but you can correct it by dishing and truing the wheel.

In truth, your wheel was likely built by a machine. I would expect that a poorly tensioned machine built wheel could be out of true by as much as 2mm in the course of regular riding. If you spin the wheel with the tail end of a zip tie (attached to the frame) brushing the rim at the closest point you will probably see a gap of at least 2mm's before the wheel makes a complete rev. I would say don't worry about it, or better to learn how to true your wheel. It's a good skill to have.
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Old 2009-11-18, 05:36 PM   #15
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1-2mm is really close. I would not bother with trying to fix it. If you really want to fix it I would try to do it yourself instead of always bringing it to the shop, You will save money in the long run especially if you keep going back for such small things.


Get a proper sized spoke wrench of good quality (crappy wrenches may be cheeper but will round your nipples causing you more frustration and expense in the long run.) and tighten the spokes on the left by a quarter turn. If that was too much or not enough adjust accordingly.
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