Blue Shift: A New-Cycle Begins (2022) 🏁

True to her name, Blue Shift has travelled over from the US towards me here in the UK - and I’m feeling extremely fortunate to be her new keeper :pray:

My sincere thanks to @harper for the opportunity to embark on new mono-learnings —and to be able to now ride this engineering marvel on to new epicyclic adventures…

I’ve already had a short taste of high gear, and I’m a hooked!

I plan to document, in hopefully engaging ways, the learning, trials and trips aboard: Blue Shift :gear::heart:

12 Likes

A new owner and a new continent. Sorry it took so long to get there but the transaction and shipping was surprisingly easy. Congratulations, Felix. Now, ride like the wind.

4 Likes

I am so happy to learn that you are the new owner, Felix! Not that John Foss would have been a terrible owner (definitely not!), BUT given your willingness to share your experiences with your other geared unicycles, I expect (and hope) that we can now look forward to experiencing your trials and accomplishments with Blue Shift through entertaining videos (No pressure! :stuck_out_tongue_winking_eye:).

3 Likes

Riding like the wind is indeed a good way to ride. The wind flows until it hits something and bounces off, and thinking about my riding when I just go ride for the sake of riding I will go until there is something in my way(busy road, construction, etc.) and just turn and go another way. Eventually I get lost and just keep going until I recognize something. Anyways, I’m looking forward to hearing about this unicycles new adventures! And perhaps you will be keeping up with the wind in high gear:)

1 Like

Just great. I wish you interesting travels and beautiful landscapes. You inspired me to take a ride today and admire the local park.

1 Like

Looks nice but hard to tell much details from the picture. Any closeup pictures? What exactly do you have? Either way hope you enjoy your new toy.

1 Like



Well if you insist! :laughing:

Also now has a new tyre being tested. Will ride properly this weekend:

The future details on this amazing machine are listed in the recent trading post advert:

It’s a wonderful toy I admit. I do find unicycles bring an amazing amount of joy, health benefits and a decent amount of fascination. Best ridden for sure, but also nice to have around you in the house… may seem odd, but I find my wheels and Blue Shift “friendly” items to have around when I can’t ride (work, work, work) … and then the joy when I can get out for a ride!

2 Likes

Looks like an amazing piece of unique equipment you got your hands on. I’ve been trawling through harper’s posts to find out some information. Is the gear fixed or can you change it on the fly?

1 Like

Thanks!!!

It’s genuinely magnificent in both the history and the ride. Did my usual stretch the other weekend and was stunned by how confident I was in high gear and on the Big Apple 2.35” tyre. Never ridden on that kind of tyre before but I found it tracked for the most part pretty well and I only had one sudden UPD.

As for shifting. It’s not on the fly, but it is shiftable by unscrewing a small hex bolt and then bolt the torque arm into the hub body itself. I’ve not yet ridden in low gear if I’m honest and suspect I will just focus on learning to mount confidently in high and enjoy that. But once my trips get longer in mileage - then it’ll be nice to go to 29” 1:1 when wiped out energy wise from high.

But high is where the magic is for me. And where I get a decent work out and sense of accomplishment.

It could be simply that a geared 29er is a sweet spot size-wise, or the fact this has 170mm cranks (at end hole)… but currently I’m putting it down to the fact that this hub just has some extra magic that gets it to flow along with such ease - which somehow gives me a good deal more confidence in high gear than my G26er.

I kind of like the fact there’s no shifting button to worry about accidental downshifts or any brake to faff with. It’s complex internally but simple in operation and gets out of the way of the actual ride :star_struck:

2 Likes

170 cranks that’s long, I used to run 165’s on my guni as that’s what the previous owner had. I suppose long cranks will allow you to do entire rides in high gear easily. Myself I’ve never managed an entire ride in high gear as it’s so much harder to manoeuvre the wheel in high gear at slow speeds. I’m still undecided what I want my 2nd geared hub to be. Maybe a 29 or smaller is what I should get.

In high these 170s don’t in fact feel too long. They’d probably feel too long in 1:1 but in 1:1.5 they just give a bit more control and I am already going pretty fast where my UPD required me to run to not somersaults!

I can’t wait to get the time to properly test G36er-ing as I can well imagine the roll over and high gear cadence will be delightful. However I am pretty sure 29” wheel is a sweet spot in general for gearing up especially for path riding.

The ride isn’t too high like a 36er which can at times be worrying for a fast UPD, but is is a big enough wheel to make mincemeat of roots and bumps that I’d have to use some serious cognitive output on my 26er in high to feel sure I’ll make it.

This is all related to me - here and now with my skill levels as they are today. So all issues can be surmounted by either getting more physically skilled and tuned to the wheel you have (any size) - or you find a size that stretches but doesn’t strain or put you off a ride opportunity.

I’d love a G24 for portability- but I know I’d have to be prepared to get skilled in being reactive in high gear more so than I might need to be on a G29er.

It seems to be a unicyclists long term preoccupation- what size wheel is going to be best.

I don’t think we’ll ever answer that conclusively … :grin:

1 Like

I just changed my crank length in my g36 to 125 this week and it’s taking some adjustment but 1:1 riding is so much better with shorter cranks. One thing I found with long cranks was I tend to make the wheel wobble side to side more often but shorter cranks I can keep it straighter.

Felix-

I’m glad to see you’re getting some kilometers in. I’m interested in the performance of the Cult x Vans blue camo tire. It certainly looks cool. Did you take your daughter for a ride? I used to ride around with my kids on my shoulders. Moms don’t seem to like that so much.

1 Like

Going to up the mileage as and when I can get more free time :gear:

I know it looks like I was just off on a ride with Jazzy on my back. But I’d not dare :laughing:…. perhaps when older and on a safe stretch slowly but then again I’d be worried about falling on my back and how they’d fall too.

Testing the tyre this weekend on a few miles of somewhat bumpy path. It’ll give me an idea if it’s great —or just a mistake and solely cool looking purchase.

Fingers crossed it turns out to be a useable narrow 29” uni-tyre - given it has a grippy tread but also a relatively overall sleek surface shape :crossed_fingers:Plus it is pretty beefy at 1kg and feels like a solid sidewall’d tyre.

I really like the look - but it does have to ride well and be more grippy than the Big Apple to stay mounted.

Now that was a fun ride.

Nice when the first section is the scary warm-up bit, where things don’t seem to be going your way - but then the return trip is when you’re in the zone: carefree, fear-free and flying :gear:


Outward-bound, I had to purposefully UPD (that’s a bit of an oxymoron- but you’ll get me) —6 bikes were two abreast and they were doing a good clip - as was I, for a monowheel, and I just decided to pop off the front as there was no space to pass them safely or time to try and slow down and properly dismount.

Anywho - on the way back I realised what Greg (@harper) means by the well-wish of:

“Ride Like The Wind”

I got it.

It’s really meant to read: The Hub Rides Like The Wind… and I needs must be like a kite :kite: or the surfer 🏄‍♂ on their surfboard … and catch its currents.

This hub’s currents are electrifyingly good and today I felt fully plugged in and in no small part thanks to the wonders of the new tyre I’ve installed: Cult x Vans Waffle

5 Likes

I hope you didn’t get hurt. I’ve come off the front at about 20mph but I was fully padded up. I somersaulted over my helmet and rolled on my backpack which, fortunately, protected my back.

1 Like

Gorgeous looking tyre you got there, won’t it get a big black line on it eventually?

If you purposely dismounted then it’s not really a UPD since you planned it, more likely a Controlled Dismount.

I’m surprised you could catch 6 cyclists riding at speed, but even so couldn’t you have just slowed down and followed at their speed? Glad you didn’t get hurt anyway, you really don’t want to have a UPD at speed on a guni not fun.

1 Like

I probably over dramatised that section of my report. It was scary by my standards but risk was was low. I was more shaken by my perception of a “what ifs” as in imagining the UPD as the cyclists past me.

What you describe sounds terrifying and I’m hoping I never get that acrobatic :crossed_fingers:Glad your back survived!

It could happen I guess but it won’t get that bad I feel. It looks a bit messy but it feels surprisingly robust and I feel it’ll get more worn down then coloured black - it does look nice which is a bonus but I’d only ride it if it worked for my needs and aim for Blue Shift.

Badly written methinks, my bad. The 6 - 2x2 cyclists were heading towards me on the right, and I’m on the left - so it was narrow and they were doing a decent pace with a portable sound system blasting :musical_note: and clearly weren’t deciding to move into single file to follow polite protocol with passing on this shared path. I made the judgement call to get off. And of course it wasn’t really a UPD as I triggered it intentionally. But it would visually appear like a mistake.

One of the troop, shouted out: “Ah unicycle! - Keep at it, you’ve nearly got it!”

They’d gone before I could explain via diatribe (joke) that they’d forced me to get off to avoid risks to myself and them - and of course bore them ridged with the facts and challenges of riding a GEARED unicycle :rofl::nerd_face:

Wonderful ride on Blue Shift. Such a nice feeling wheel and tyre.

Been a few months since I dared to ride this geared magic carpet - after a rattling UPD.

But I managed to push through the fear and get newly accustomed to high gear :gear:

4 Likes

I know this has probably been answered by you but how do you shift? On the crank? And what type of cranks are those?