This morning I noticed a really quiet clicking sound coming from my uni when I spun the wheel. It doesn’t happen all the time, and it doesn’t seem to be connected with any particular wheel position. It happens when the wheel is on the ground and if I’m holding it in the air. The sound seems to be coming from the hub, but I could be wrong.
So what’s wrong with my uni? Is it just an annoying noise that won’t affect anything, or am I slowly destroying my uni by continuing to ride it?
I don’t know what kind of uni I have, but here’s a pic, if that helps at all.
If it happens when you spin the wheel in the air, the most likely thing is that the bearings are clicking. Bearings shouldn’t click, but riding it like that isn’t too big a deal; they’ll gradually get worse over time, but bearings have to be really, really bad before they cause significant problems for unicycling. (And you can get new bearings for $3).
It could be either pedal or hub bearings; hub bearings are more likely.
Other possibilities are that your bearing holders are loose (unlikely with that bearing design), or your spokes are really loose. Minorly loose spokes will creak when the unicycle is weighted, but usually not when it’s unweighted.
I wouldn’t worry at all. A bearing has a tiny little bit of a gap between each ball, and the ring that they roll on is unlikely to be perfectly smooth - especially if you’ve ever hopped or dropped off a kerb. There will be tiny little clicks and taps going on all the time, and the spokes, rim and big air space in the tyre can sometimes amplify this. And now you’re listening for it, you’re bound to notice it even more.
Clicks and creaks that are directly related to your pedal strokes are a bad thing - especially if they get more noticeable when you’re going up or down hill.
Or, with that type of bearing holder, it could be that the two bolts on the side of the bearing holder are loose. Make sure that they are not, or else your unicycle frame will die quickly.
It may also be that the bearing holder has come loose and enlarged the hole that those two bolts go into. If that is the case, then the unicycle is broke, you might as well ride it until the frame dies, you’d need a new frame but they are not very expensive.