29 or 36?

I’m looking for some advice. I learned how to uni 35+ years ago on my old Schwinn. Did some serious miles back then - even with those rock-hard saddles. Saw several Suns at a shop a few months ago and got right up and pedalled around. It felt pretty good after so many years of not riding. I’m now training for longboard push marathons and thought that a uni would be great for off-day, lower impact conditioning.

I was originally thinking about a 29 but after checking out lots of posts on this great site for the last few weeks, I’m really leaning toward a 36. The Nimbus Nightrider looks pretty cool. I’d love to try out a 36 but I don’t want to thrash someones pride and joy since I heard to takes a while to learn how to mount a 36.

Any suggestions or advice would be appreciated.

I’m not going to talk you out of getting a 36" - they’re a blast. Since you can ride a smaller wheel, learning to mount and ride the 36" will take some practice but shouldn’t be a problem.

Why don’t you let us know where you are located. Maybe someone in your area has a 36" that you can try. It’s not like we never thrash them ourselves. Anyone who has designed a unicycle expecting it never to crash to the ground hard is being unrealistic.

For sure, try before you buy.

I’m in North Texas (DFW area). I’m hoping that a member of the Dallas Uni Club has one I can try.

I do! Come to the Celebration Park meeting this Sunday. I’ll bring it.

I was fortunate to have a uni rider in the area who let me try his 29 and 36. The 29 was nice, the 36 was a whole different world! I’m still torn between which to get, because I do want to learn muni, but I’m thinking for my size and strength, a 36 with dual cranks should do the trick. Try as many as you can, that’s part of the fun!!

Ever since I got my Nightrider Pro, I’ve never looked back. 36er all the way.

I feel right, Brian. . . . I feel right. . .

If you want to go distances, get a 36, not a 29’er.

FWIW, it isn’t heard to learn to ride a 36 and many people can mount and ride away without trouble at all. On my first ride I did 20 miles (partially off road).


I have both, as well as most of the other standard sizes.

For roads and the sort of cross country that I find easy, the 29 is versatile and manageable and the 36 is “the real thing”.

On the other hand, if I start to push the limits of what I can achieve technically, then the 36 becomes limited and unwieldy, and the 29 becomes nimble.

For straight road, nothing less than a 36er will do it best.
For mixed use, if you can only own one uni a 29er is a good choice.

I have all the sizes and my fav is the 29er, but I also don’t ride on the road.

For gravel roads and some smoother dirt roads, a 36er is quite friendly once you get used to how it rides.

The only issue I have with a 36er is that it’s so big, it’s almost not a unicycle in the traditional sense, ie not that nimble. I really like how a unicycle is more nimble than a bike, which seems to be lost on anything over a 29" wheel.

Of course some would argue that a 29er is not nimble…

Get one of each, you know you want them both :slight_smile:

IMHO the 36 is the way to go. Its more versatile than you might think. I origially got a 29 then later a 36. The first uni I ever sold was my 29er (never used it). The only two I ever really ride any more are 36ers. One for road - 125s, 45psi. And one for XC - 170s, 21 psi. I’ve done a couple of hundred miles this summer. All 36er. But remember, Memphis is not a mountainous place. Mostly flat or rolling with some challenges spots.

They didn’t have multi-hole cranks when I was choosing 29 over 36 originally. If they had a 125/170 for the 36, that would be perfect for me. Terrain in Dallas is not too different from Memphis. If you were in Ashville, NC it might be a different story. Its easier to hop up stuff on the 29er. So you just BLAST OVER them on the Beast with a crazed look on your face!! AAAAAAAArrr!

I bet if you get the 29, you’ll eventually get the 36. However, if you get the 36, you probably won’t get the 29.