Adjusting a uni that leans to one side

I have a uni that seems to be off-balance and leans to the right when riding, which means I have to lean to the left to keep it straight.

The wheel appears to be centered in the fork although not quite true so wobbles a bit from side to side in both directions. A friend has one without a wobble that has a similar lean.

Given that uni’s are symmetric along the vertical axis I would expect them to be perfectly balanced from side to side unless something is wrong. It would be handy if there was a little screw to calibrate the puppy but I’ve only seen those on giraffes for chain tension.

Is there a way to calibrate/correct such a situation? (apart from putting rocks in my left pocket :slight_smile: )

It seems like a lot of people who have leaning uni’s find that it’s the tire and/or the road camber that is causing the lean. You could try to use different pressures to see if it handles better. My Coker tire does pretty well at 32psi, but when I go to 45psi it starts to follow road crown too much.

Before you start adjusting things you might want to figure out what is leaning.

You say the wheel is not true, but is it dished correctly? You want the rim to be centered between the hub bearings. An easy way to check this is to use a to measure the distance from a bearing holder to the edge of the rim on both sides. The two measurements should be the same. If they aren’t the same then the wheel needs to be dished and trued. Also, if the wheel was centered in the frame then the frame is probably out of alignment too.

If your wheel is dished correctly, then you can use it to see if it sits centered in the frame.

If it sits centered in the frame you can see if the seat tube is aligned with the rim, or if it’s angled to one side. if your seat tube is leaning you might be able to straighten it, but this is a place where uni frames break, and so it might break or cause a weakness that will break later.

If it is aligned, and the rest of the stuff was true, then you can look at your seat. I had a seat that was leaning to one side very slightly, and fixed it by putting washers between the seat base and the seatpost on that side.

I hope that this rambling gives you at least some things to consider. If it’s not that helpful I’m sure there will be other ideas down the road.

If you turn it around and ride it backwards, does it lean to the left? If not, the thing leaning is not the unicycle.

There are lots of things which can cause or exacerbate balance bias. Road camber is an obvious one, and certain kinds of tires can make dealing with camber much worse. What kind of tire do you have on the supposedly wonky uni?

ride on the other side of the road for a bit

I don’t think it is the unicycle that is causing the lean…

I had problems with twist when I was learning. The unicycle always made my body twist to the left :stuck_out_tongue:

It will go away with time and practice.

Also try to lean to the right even though the unicycle feels like it is leaning that way. Once you can make it lean in both directions you will have much better control of the situation.

That is an interesting idea. You might be onto something …

I’ve been riding since March. I hope that twisting will go away. Some roads are very difficult to ride with the steep road crown (especially on hills). Sometimes I go on the sidewalk to get relief. One reason I love off road is because I rarely have that problem.

I was doing that (going to one side ) when I was learning and I put the seat clamp so that the heavier end was on the side i had to lean to. I think it was all in my head but I started riding straight.

So i did the porcupine rim on Saturday in moab. My muni had previously had a lean also… My friend thought it was seat post. Changed the seat post and it still seemed to lean.

I noticed that more rubber of the tire was sticking out one side
I took the time and fixed that too. That seemed to make it better. But there was a slight lean…
After riding the rim I took a close look and noticed my flanges are bent to hell… Its one of the first KH moment hubs with the big letters stamped in it.

So I am now thinking about getting a new hub. Since after sooo much tweaking… that is the only thing I can find that is wrong… Might want to check that…

Thanks, lots of good ideas here. I especially like the one about adjusting the angle of the seat, I hadn’t thought of that. And the suggestion of riding backwards is so obvious I totally missed it too! Many good technical options as well.

It’s not the camber of the road, that’s something I am aware of and ruled out already.

My new uni leans to one side!

Sorry for reviving this dead thread, but im having this same problem!

I just bought a QU-AX Cross 24", and it leans constantly to the right, which makes me have to lean to the left to balance on it!

I am an experienced unicyclist and I am sure it is not me.

I have tried turning the seat around, and the unicycle then leans to the other side, which makes it obvious that the problem is something in the unicycle. :angry:

The thing is just by looking at it everything seems fine, the fork looks straight(ish), and the distance from the rim to the bearings is the same on both sides. :frowning:

I am clueless as to what I should do to solve this problem, so any kind of advice would be highly appreciated!

Thank you!!!

Take a good look at the seat post, that turned out to be my problem.

Even though my seat post was brand new the part that connects to the seat (the one with four holes in it) had been welded slightly off horizontal. So, not being at a true 90 degrees from the post itself the seat leaned to one side. It was subtle but definately there.

Once I tried a different seat post the leaning cleared right up! Too bad because it was a nice seat post other than being welded incorrectly.

aaah!! thank you sooo much! i just realised the seatpost is also a bit off centre on mine too!! I will have a go with a different seatpost. it should clear it up :slight_smile:

wait a sec… but then, how is it that the uni leant the other way when i turned the seat around…? oh well, ill give it a go with another seatpost anyway!

Off kilter seat post

The seatpost on my Nimbus is off as well. If I put a straight edge on the seat mounting plate it’s obvious. I inserted a few washers to level the seat position and it feels better. I don’t think it’s 100% but I’m used to it and don’t lean anymore.


hmmm …washers, huh? that might do it!!

i have tried on a different seatpost and it feels better, but still nowhere near perfect.

Im starting to think it might be that my first unicycle was originally bent the other way, and i might’ve gotten used to it… :frowning:

i think i will give it some more time… and washers!! :sunglasses:

Maybe your ass doesn’t like that seat

I had a Nimbus gell a few years ago (maybe different today) that was sorta rounded on top. I kept thinking it wasn’t straight, and would twist it left and right. Never felt as good as the more flat topped KH free ride or trials seat on any uni I tried it on. Made me feel like it favored one side. I gave it to a friend, and it seems ok with him.

I’m not suggesting Nimbus saddles are bad, rather, if you have tried everything else, a saddle with a different shape might help.

ok, so i have tried a series of things… it still leans, if it was just me, i think i would’ve gotten used to it by now, so theres definitely something wrong with the unicycle.

I have tried turning the fork the wrong way round, and it still leans the same way, so all i can think of is that the problem is something in the wheel, tyre, hub, cranks or pedals.

I am going to try different cranks and pedals asap, just to cross that out.

any ideas from anyone as to what could be causing this anymore!!??? I think im going to go craaazy! :frowning:

I am sure there are lots of potential causes for this but every time it’s happened to me it’s been at least related to the tire.

I did most of my tour across Canada on my original coker tire (four years old and well over 6500km when I changed it, and it still had life). A lot of the highway shoulders are steeply banked across the prairies and in Ontario, so I’d assumed that was the only cause of the lean, which was getting extremely frustrating.

When I finally changed the tire (identical coker tire) in Sudbury, I couldn’t believe the difference: I could ride the steep shoulders and not lean and stick my hip out to the right. I gotta say that change did wonders for my thighs and lower back.

There have been a few times I’ve had leaning issues with my 24, and changing the tire always seems to clear it up. I probably ride my tires too long.

Moral: If you’re leaning and your tire’s getting on in age try a new one!

but my tire is new…

aaaaaaaaaarrrrrrrgg! frustrating

Have you tried riding another unicycle, just to make absolutely sure it’s not you? You sound like an experienced rider, I’m sure you’ve already ruled that out, but just in case???

I’m still a noob, but after a year of problem-free riding I developed a NASTY twist (right shoulder back) that took me about 8 months to cure. A lot of my problem, I believe, developed when I started riding up steeper hills. Subtle differences in riding symmetry led to unbalanced muscle development. I also found that I was putting too much pressure on the left pedal at the start of the upstroke.

I’ve heard of experienced riders developing a twist, some say it comes and goes. Might be worth considering.