Broken Unicycle ? ? ?

I had a most unique problem with my 24" Schwinn last night. I had my wheel re-spoked with heavy duty spokes several years ago, and since that time, I have never had a spoke break. Prior to that, I would break 3 or 4 while spinning.

Remember, I am a big guy. I weigh 260+ pounds and my uni takes me riding her for several miles, several days per/week. She will let me spin, twist, even bounce a few inches off the ground, and ride off of curbs and small drops (6" to 10") with no ill effects. Until last night…

My 11 year old daughter, who is much to short to mount this uni, was attempting to mount it by using her feet on the wheel, not on the pedals. I was enjoying watching her do this, when her foot slipped off the edge of the tire and dinged into the spokes. I did not hear the distinctive “ping” of a broken spoke, but she says: “Whoops, Daddy, I broke a spokey thing!”

Sure enough, she broke the head off the nipple of a single spoke. You could still see the head of it when you looked down through the hole in the rim.

Today I got a new nipple and fixed it tonight. The problem, now I have a slightly (less than a 1/4") warped rim. Any recommendations on fixing this? Should I take it to a bike shop and have the tech “true” the wheel? I don’t know of any wheel builders in my area? Any advice?

I am really afraid with my weight, I might cause more damage by riding it this way, but I want to ride tomorrow. HELP!!! Makes me glad I have a Muni on the way (right Frank and Amy?) :slight_smile: --chirokid–

Re: Broken Unicycle ? ? ?

your concern strikes me as wise
get it fixed proper before riding it again
if u’re in the mood to learn how to build a wheel yourself, i’m sure u’ll get all the technical and moral support right here
if not, take it to the pro’s

I think this is opportunity knocking. The opportunity is to learn how to true your own wheel. It is super-simple to learn (with a little practice, a gentle touch and patience). Go to a bike shop in Knoxville - or closer if you can find one - and get a good quality spoke key that fits your wheel’s spoke nipples (Park, Pedros or Spin Doctor brand). In starting out, I recommend never tightening or loosening a spoke more than a full-turn as you get the “feel” for what you are doing. Be gentle and patient and slowly you’ll get that wheel true AND round. There are several great sources for wheel building and service on-line.

Gild and Tommy, I took your advice. Decided to go buy a good quality spoke wrench and learn how to true my rim myself.

When I got to the Bike shop, instead of asking where the spoke wrenches were located, I asked if they trued wheels? They said, “Have you got the wheel with you?” I did, and grabbed it out of the truck. In a matter of minutes, two of the workers had it spinning very straight. Of course, they wanted me to demo the unicycle for them. I had fun riding it in the shop for them.

What did they charge me? $2.00

A very Happy Uni Rider, --chirokid–

TWO BUCKS!!! ONLY TWO BUCKS!!! Such a deal!! None-the-less, it is such a handy skill to have to make those little adjustments as they are needed without being customer of others’ services.

Also, Al Akerman of Knoxville wants to get together and ride with you. He sent me and e-mail and said that he tried to contact you but never hear back from you. E-me and I’ll resend you his e-mail address. Also-also, when ya coming to Memphis? We are in the middle of planning a freestyle workshop for Nov. 22. That would be a great time to visit.


Hi Tommy,
$2 was a killer deal. Can you believe? That ol’Schwinn rode perfectly today.

Second, I would love to get together and ride with Al. I am sending an e-mail your way.

Last, me in Memphis? I live in Tennessee, God’s end of Tennessee. Isn’t Memphis like hundreds and hundreds of miles from Tennessee? :smiley: All joking aside, Memphis really does seem so far way for me, but I will check flight rates for the November 22 workshop. Keep me informed. --chirokid–