16' wheels for tricking...

Hello everybody, first thread here…
Is there someone that’s using the smaller wheels?
I’m wondering if that could be a shortcut to learn tricks…
I’m a compressed guy, 165cm without heels :slight_smile:
Am i right in assuming a smaller wheel could give more confidence, be light and spins easier?
Maybe mounted on a standard 19 trials frame/seat unit.
Anyway, what do you think and if there’s someone that’s doing this, i’d like to ear thoughts.

Hi Superfunk,

usually, 16inches wheels are used for children not having enough insteam to use a 19/20inches uni. To benefit from it completely, it needs to be used with a dedicated small frame.
Using a trial frame with such a small wheel defeat the main purpose (short legs constraints).

If your goal is to do some street, freestyle and/or trial, you will be better served with a 19 or 20 inches unicycle where the components are designed to survive abuses. If you are concerned about the insteam, you can still make sure you use the lowest possible position for the seatpost and can even saw the top tube of the frame if necessary.

A 19/20inches wheel isn’t that big to deal with when you get used to it. The trick to have enough marging doing tricks is to have the seat lower than straight legs to increase the “toy” feeling (feels smaller => feels easier).

16 foot wheel YES PLEASE! :slight_smile:

Supposing you mean 16" wheel, I haven’t seen anyone seriously riding one. But lots of things haven’t been tried yet in unicycling and I’m sure lots of us would be interested in seeing what you could do.

Sure, you could use a trials or freestyle frame no problem. It could be challenging finding a high quality rim and tire in that size though, compared to what’s available in 19" trials and 20" sizes. And you’d pay for it in lack of rolling ability on anything but a perfectly smooth surface.

Also, trials wheels really aren’t that big, if that’s what you’re worried about. Take a look at Dan Heaton’s riding for example. He seems compact, to say the least, but does amazing stuff. And there are petite female unicyclists on standard sized wheels who’d put most of us to shame.

[Siddhartha Valmont got in ahead of me. Similar points…]

I already have a 19 trials, actually is a nice one and it fits me well…
This idea was coming in search of a way to make trick learning a bit easier.
No need to be super strong, just enough for some spins and flips.
Who knows, maybe it’s fun. Maxxis makes a 16x2.4 that looks like a cc.
Nobody already tried? Is it plain stupid?

I didn’t find the Maxxis but there’s a Kenda for $12 if that’s what you mean:

I hadn’t noticed that one before. It could work and there’s not much harm in trying. $12 w/ the free shipping code plus an inner tube isn’t much to spend to find out, supposing you have a wheel to go with it. Maybe someone has tried and will chime in here eventually, but doing it yourself is the only way to really know.

It’s not the tire that wont last, but good luck fiding a 16" rim that will be strong enough!

I had a 16" uni I build up for fun. It’s just too small, it doesn’t ride fast at all, you can’t get momentum for tricks.

You’d better try to make your 19" lighter instead of investing on a 16", a lighter uni will help you for tricks for sure!

As Jaco said, you won’t find a strong 16" wheel off the shelf. You might be able to build one up, but not sure what’s on the market for high-end 16" wheels. They might exist for recumbents & such, but they might only be skinny ones. You’re better off with a quality 20" Freestyle uni. Taking a few ounces off the wheel will not make learning the tricks easier enough to notice. You might be more likely to notice your rim bending instead.

All the 16" unicycles out there are build for kids, which means for light riders that aren’t very strong. Custom would be the only way to really have something equivalent to a quality 20" Freestyle.

The other problem with smaller wheels is ground clearance. Pedals will hit the ground more on turns, which can be anywhere from annoying to a deal-breaker, depending on your riding style.

I have a custom made 12" unicycle that I use (mostly used) in shows; strong enough to do parodies of “regular” unicycle tricks, like seat out, stand-up riding and seat drag. But you can’t lean into turns at all on it, because the pedals are so close to the ground.


OK, i got it… it’s just silly.
I’d like to see some pics of your 16, if you have it.
As for making my 19 lighter… i dunno how, and i doubt it’s worth it.
I have a good custom trials, assembled with love from Marco of mad4one (i live one hour from him)…
It has a impact frame (round crown), a tryall rim, a k1 seat and k1 140mm cranks.
Tyre is maxxis cc, is already a huge step from my previous ride: a monty branded p.o.s. full steel, cotterless and with a hard luna tyre.
I don’t think i can shave anything noticeable out of it.
That was one of the reason i bought a good one after my learner: not having to worry about tweaks.
Thanks for sharing, opinions are always welcome.

Not entirely silly! Max Dingemans from TCUC custom built a 16" unicycle and used it almost exclusively for unispins. The smaller wheel is easier to spin. I’ve landed 540 unispins on a 16". However, apart from 360/540/720 etc unispins its not a particularly practical street unicycle.

FWIW: best 16" tyre I’ve found is the Maxxis Hookworm - they are rated to a high pressure and last almost forever.

Yeah, you got me: unispins.
I guess it’s only worth it if i find a cheap enough rim to lace into a cheap hub, with cheap cranks and 100mm pinch to swap the wheel into my frame.
Where can i find such a rim?

Doable but probably only w/ a custom build. I’ve thought of getting a 12" or 16" to deal w/ low sealing for riding in my basement.

A European guy (Sweeden?) here has vids of him doing tricks (mostly large spins) & trials on a custom 12" (I think it had a standard frame, ISIS hub & cranks, strongish rim, 13g spokes). I think his rims only lasted a few months.

Maybe 12 is supersmall, but it sure must be a quick spinner!!
Can’t find any videos.
This thread is getting interesting.


Found this