24" Surly LM Uni Build

Hello all,
I am starting to plan my next unicycle. This one is going to be built slowly, with my enjoying the processes of acquiring the best components - so that in the end I have a uni I will be very proud of.

Stage one is to build (have built) a tough 24" large marge wheel - with a non-disk hub. I’d previously considered using the Exceed Ti hub - but after advice from a previous thread here I have decided this isn’t necessary (if a tad excessive) - now it looks like the standard Nimbus ISIS one is the best for durability when coupled with the Surly LM rim.

My question now however is what spokes to use? Halo’s look quite nice - but I don’t know much about spokes.

Stage two - will be the expensive stage of adding a Triton frame
And stage three - KH spirits with a decent disk brake and a nice saddle arrangement.

And I will probably go with the Duro 3" tyre as this sounds like a good option for the LM rim (and when I say option… I guess I really only have one option when it comes to a 3" 24" tyre!)

I’d be very interested to know of others here that have built / have a LM 24" uni and what compoents they used.

Will update during the course of this uni’s coming into existence.
Tips and ideas, very welcome :slight_smile:


I’m a big fan of Sapim spokes, and for most things the “Race” model is my choice. If you want to go super light you might try “Laser” spokes, but they are much thinner with a 1.5mm mid section vs. 1.8mm for the “Race.” That thin section will make the wheel deflect more, and so I would probably stick with the “Race” (2mm/1.8mm/2mm).

I haven’t been big on aluminum nipples in the past, but the current generation of Sapim aluminum nipples seems to fix all of the wind up problems with other brands. In fact the last set of wheels I built with them was with Lasers, and I had practically no wind up! That combo has been a tricky build in the past.

So, Sapim Al nipples with Race spokes for a light and sturdy wheel, or Lasers for a bit lighter with a bit more flex (I’d go with Race).

Building a 24" Large Marge/Duro and then trying to cut weight seems a bit odd to me. The LM in the 24" is a heavy rim. The Duro is a heavy tire. Although, if it suits your fancy, go for it.

I have a 24" Surly Conundrum with LM laced to a Nimbus hub with 14 ga DT spokes and brass nipples. Nimbus Flat saddle and KH post. The tire is an Intense 3.0. 150mm Moments.

It’s a great uni. My favorite by far for the local indoor bike/uni park http://www.thewheelmill.com.

It is a bit of a beast though. The LM in the 24" was only available as the Downhill version. I love the uni, but I wouldn’t try to cut weight with the LM. That’s what KH and other 24" rims are for.

That’s a good point about the weight. With that in mind I would certainly recommend Race spokes, and maybe even saving a little money and build with brass nipples.

I guess I was thinking light build in regards to mentioning the Ti hub. Of course you could always drill your LM, and get the weight down.

Jtrops, unigoat
Thanks for comments. I definitely have no interest in building a light uni. As you said I could just build/buy some KH based.

The ti hub idea, and the triton frame plan weren’t for weight reasons - I like the durability of the triton frame.

Thanks for the spoke tips. I’ve also been looking at Halos - it says they are for DH - are they any good too? I have seen that they are available in 232 which is what the spoke calculator came up with for a Nimbus hub and EDR 487 for the surly rim. Can only find the DT in 236

Regarding nipples - From what I have read brass sounds more reliable. Is that right?

Cheers for your input. Love my Oregon and the feeling of a LM ride, so am looking forward to building this smaller sibling.

I don’t know about Halo spokes, but most modern spokes are decent. I would definitely use double butted spokes as it reduces elbow fatigue (spoke elbow, not the one on your arm) which is the leading reason for broken spokes.

Brass nipples have been more reliable in the past because you could develop appropriate tension without winding spokes. The new Sapim nipples fix that problem. The other problem of broken nipples is just as bad with brass as it is with aluminum, and it is due to the spoke end stopping before it passes the shoulder of the nipple.

I still build most of my wheels with brass nipples, and will continue to do so until good aluminum nipples are as cheap as good brass ones.

The LM 24" rim I am getting is a 32h version. Is 32h a weaker option that 36h - actually was there ever a 36h 24" surly rim? Just curious. Or is it more of a case of the spokes used and how well the wheel is built?


32 may be marginally weaker than 36, but in practice I don’t think anyone could actually argue the point. The space between spokes gives you an idea about how much work each spoke is doing, and how much the rim needs to do. When you compare a 26" wheel with 36 spokes against a 24" wheel with 32 spokes you will see that the space between the spokes is about the same. For all practical purposes the two wheels will be of similar strength.

Nice. Just out of curiosity: is there other 24in LM rims available from where you got yours ?

I got mine from http://www.cdk.fr/monocycle/pieces-detachees/jantes-1107.html - it looks like I got the last in stock as it now says due in… Are they even still making them??..

I’m looking forward to receiving it… It has black and white spokes… And I have never seen a 32 spoke unicycle wheel before.

Next, save up for a triton frame :smiley:
Will post a pic when it gets here

Cheers for all the help here this far

I’ve got one - street 24".

Hub: Nimbus ISIS 32h
Rim: Echo TR 24" 44 mm
Frame: Nimbus Oracle 24"

The hub seems a bit wide for this rim - I’ve broken two spokes in 1.5 year.

What do you mean by this? Are you saying that you broke spokes because of the hub/rim width difference?

For what it’s worth, wider hub flange spacing makes for a stronger wheel, and it would reduce the stress on individual spokes which would cause them to break.


Really cool looking uni you have there.

I’ve broken spokes because of much jumping of course :slight_smile:

But I don’t like the way spokes go from flanges - outer ones may touch flange in area of first “cross”. It looks like hub (flanges) is too wide (for 24") - 72 mm. For exapmple Koxx and Impact hubs with large flanges has 58 mm wide.

I had got 32 spokes 26" wheel on TryAll Nowar rim (58 mm), its spokes was fine!

Are you saying that the nimbus ISIS 32h is somehow flawed when compared with the normal 36h? It doesn’t looking like it would be such a significant difference and Nimbus sell the 32h as a hardcore muni hub, so surely it must be fit for that kind of service??

Jtrops, hope you’ll forgive my obsession with getting a really tough wheel - but I’m curious how a Surly LM 24 with a Nimbus 32h hub would compare against a standard KH 24 muni wheel. I’m hoping that it will be tougher (as well as more stable thanks to the 65mm rim) - or does the change in hub type and number of spokes now make them about equal.

I know you have already answered my similar question regarding 36h vs 32 - now I’m wondering where my new wheel would rank amongst the others.


No :slight_smile:
This hub is perfect for such wide rim like LM.

There is nothing wrong with the Nimbus 32h hub from what I’ve seen. You are going to have a seriously bomber wheel.

I have to be honest that I am having a hard time understanding the problem that Hardcase is bringing up. From the way he describes it I can’t see anything different than any other wheel. For the most part the outside spokes will touch the hub flange in the way he describes. The only reason they won’t is because the builder didn’t “set” them into the straightest path, and there is still some spring pulling them away. This is bad wheelbuilding and it will result in a few broken spokes, and loss of tension. I can’t see how rim width would have any significant influence on what the spokes do at the hub.

The Nimbus 32h hub is a welded chromoly hub, it is FAR stronger than a two piece hub slip fit hub like the KH; no harm meant to Kris and his products, but sleeved hubs creak over time.

Making your wheel 32h is not going to weakening the build, four fewer spokes means nothing especially on a small wheel running a fat tire.

Are you sure you can get a 32h LM rim? That sounds wrong, they only come in 36h, so you’d have to get it blank and do a custom drill.

Personally, I’d skip the LM rim as it is very, very heavy and no stronger than a KH rim. You could look into Echo or a similar trials rim that can be had with 32h, that would save you about a pound on your wheel build.

Hello Nurse Ben,
I too was surprised to hear it was a 24" LM rim in 32h, but I have seen a photo of the finished build and it is for sure only using 32 spokes and the rim in 24" as the spokes used are 232mm which fits my 487 ERD calculation. It looks like the last CDK had in stock and it was in fact listed as a 36h, but when it came to the build I was told it would have to be 32h… So I am assuming that it was a custom drilled rim that wasn’t used. At least I can have the nice feeling of owning the lightest Surly 24" LM wheel - a huge weight saving of four spokes (and nipples!) :wink:

I realised that I could probably get an different wheel with the same strength as the Surly - but I did like the sound of 65mm wide rim, and after riding my old version Oregon I felt that I would be happy with a 24" Surly set up.

Weight was never been a huge sticking point. I may changed my mind when I am pushing this uni up a very long hill - but then I suspect I’ll be grinning all the way down it :smiley:

Thanks for your comments and info, I’ll post up a pic when it arrives and report back when uni fully built.

I was also curious about the topic on the forum about 24" tyres being almost dead - I decided to throw caution to the wind and get started with this custom 24" LM rim.

I am now wondering what people’s experiences are with the Duro/Halo/Point on a 65mm rim. I believe it is a stable set up. Is there simply no difference with these branded tyres? They’re just copies of the Duro Wildlife right? I see CRC has a good deal on the Halo 3" :slight_smile:

Just wondering what the BernMaster would be like on this rim too?? This seems intriguing to me, but looks like a half road half muni tyre.

Would the Surly LM be a good candidate for going tubeless?

Also if I decide to stock pile a few tyre (just in case) - any recommendations on how to store them. I’m thinking something airtight might help prolong their longevity.

Any tips really welcome :slight_smile:

I have a 24" Large Marge rim built as a freewheel. At first I had a 4" Vee Rubber Mission tire on it. It was great in sand but not on trails with a lot of changing camber. I rode a 3" Duro on it for a while and it was great but was tough to get on and off (a pain when I got two flats on Mt. Wilson during CA Muni Weekend). I’m currently riding the BermMaster on it and I really like it (thanks, anton005!). It was easy to get on and is a nice beefy tire that works well with the dry trails I ride. It also works much better on the road than a buzzing Duro.