Cheap uni modifications? and question about bearing covers...

Hi, just wondered if anyone else has and cheap modifications they do to there uni’s for practicality which they could share including weight saving tips?

Mine are :
Putting little ovals of griptape on top of the frame, to give better grip when doing wheel walking .etc.

Fitting plastic pedals, with the cage bit on the outside so that when the uni gets dropped on a hard surface, the pedals take the impact not the cranks and bearings. Like these

And im currently making a plastic under tray for my seat, which covers up all the bolts so that when holding onto the seat doing trials.etc there isn’t a risk of cutting your fingers on the bolts. + also i was thinking of using a blanking plug on the bottom of the seat post tube on the frame, to stop crap getting up there in wet weather.

And finally, my question about bearings, if i made thin plastic circles which would fit over the spindle and fit up against the bearings, would this stop mud + dust + sand getting into the wheel bearings or would it trap dirt there and make it more of an issue?

Thanks for taking the time to read this thread! not posted in ages, so dont go biting my head off if ive got it in the wrong section :roll_eyes:

That is a good tip. Grip tape could also be used on cranks for some styles of riding where you stand on them a lot.

These are some of the worst pedals you could have on a unicycle. They are likely to be a downgrade from whatever you already have on there. The outer cage is so weak- it is not designed to protect anything, so when the pedals take the impact they snap. Don’t waste your money on these and get some Twisted PC pedals instead, or anything else with more of a solid body than those thin cages. Cranks and bearings should be able to take thousands of beatings from dropping your unicycle. No matter what pedals you use they will always take most of the impact, so you want them to be strong.

The bolts don’t cut my fingers but I don’t do trials. The new KH seats come with much smoother bolts. Just dome nuts should be enough to protect your fingers. I wouldn’t worry about crap in the frame - I’ve seen people with mud-guards mounted on their unicycles though to prevent crap flicking up.

If it is sealed well enough it would work I guess- but bearings are sealed anyway- just don’t ride in sand and it should be able to handle mud and dust.

My tips:
A custom valve cap is relatively cheap but only changes the appearance of your unicycle and is not very performance enhancing.

If you have an older seat that flexes in the front and you want to ride mountains with it- you can strap the seat to the frame to prevent the seat from snapping. Wind a rigid strap through the seat handle and around the frame and pull it tight so it doesn’t move. It’s much cheaper than a stiffener plate and it works!

Puncture repairs-
Often patches are far bigger than the holes that you are covering- what I do is cut my patches into quarters, making the patches go further and reducing the weight you are adding to your tube slightly. Some of my recent patch-jobs have failed so you might not want to follow my advice, but I have been doing it successfully for years without problems.

Carpet shoe-
When you learn gliding you find that there is a lot of friction going on between your shoe and your tire. I’ve worn out shoes and tires and it put me off gliding for a while because of the cost of shoes. You can attach a piece of carpet to the bottom of your shoe- I used a shoelace to tie it on, and got the carpet from offcuts at the carpet store. The carpet allows gliding with minimal tire damage and no shoe damage, but is a bit of a hassle to put on and take off in mid-ride. The design needs to come around the back of the heel enough so it doesn’t get caught on the tire.

Dome nuts plus washers. If you customize your seat and end up with more thread showing, the dome nuts will “top out”. It’s hard to tell when they’re at that point, and if they’re not tight yet it does you no good without adding washers. Keep tightening your dome nuts onto too much bolt, the top will pop off and you’ll end up with something even sharper than the original naked bolt!

I wrap my seat handles with old inner tubes. It makes them a bit more comfortable, grippier, and adds a bit of protection for when they hit the pavement.

I understand about what your saying about the pedals, but ive got loads of them lying around and i prefer to use loads of them than to wreck a pair of metal pedals, which don’t seem to take the abuse so kindly.

Its true what your saying about the dome bolts, but somitmes my finures catch on the domes and thats pretty painfull aswell,so ill see how the tray works out when i re-build my unicycle.

The rubber handles a good idea, as is the carpet on the shoe, i think id prefere to use somthing abit more subtle though… cant think what?

I also put tape around my frame of my unicycle (black electric tape) it was very useful ebcause it covered up the “onza” make of the unicycle so it wasnt appealing to kids and chav’s who associate Onza with dear trials bikes. Also, it gave a good look and protected my frame, wasnt noticable either! i did the same thing with my chrome seatpost too… ive also got into the habbit of re-spraying my cranks different colours every few months, and then having a dustcap sprayed the same colour, looks good on a all blakc unicycle with jsut abit of colour.

I have done many little mods to my various unicycles. Most that I would just think of as common sense, like adding a shim to make a wheel sit centered in my less than perfect frame.

I don’t think I have a single saddle which I have not modified in some way or another, mostly just modifying the shape of the foam or beefing up the stiffener plate etc. I have done tread modifications to a few tires, including DIY studs for icy conditions, built a few handlebars out of scrap and cheep parts, added fenders, experimented with adding weight to the wheel for greater gyroscopic stability (bad idea) and done some not so cheep mods by swapping out parts for better pieces of kit.

When I build something that I will primarily use on pavement again I will definitely use pedal protectors on it since they protect more than just the pedals from shock and can save you a crank-set or two.

The definitive thread on saving weight is here.