11 FEB 2003 @ 1:18pm: UPS delivers the Coker!
I open the box… pretty.
And look at that: The Kris Holm Velo seat it came with has yellow back sides, the one that I had wanted to get for a previous uni but didn’t. I plan to swap it for the one on my muni soon. anyway…
It came with 3 seat posts. I found that the middle size one works for me. (34 inch pant inseam)
I pump up the tire to 40psi (I weigh about 175 lbs) and out the door I go for a test drive around the apartment building. It’s about 1:45 pm now.
I try to free mount. I’m on top and lean forward as I start to pedal and am soon standing in front of the uni. That’s not right. 2nd try results in the same outcome. The heck with it. I’ll learn to free mount it later. I just want to ride so assistance from my truck is in order. Off I go. No really. Off I go, now standing in front of the uni, again. My nieghbor gives his usual “that looks hard” comment, only this time I agree with him. I get back to the truck, this time using about 10 feet of it to push off as I generate a little speed and this time I’m moving. About 30 feet and I feel the cruise control engage. I’m headed straight down the road and thinking that I should have bought this thing long ago. After a block I keep going straight and decide that I might as well go get the mail at the post office. About 1/4 mile later I come to main street. About this time I realise that I either need to cross, or turn. Turning. I hadn’t gotten that far in the “learning to ride a Coker” process yet. Well, there were no cars coming so I was able to zip straight across without a hitch. I’ll try that whole turning thing later.
I get to the post office and turn onto the sidewalk. Not so bad after all, but not a 90 degree turn either. A good warm up for later I figure. I dismount, get the mail and then decide that my truck is over 1/2 mile away so I’m gonna have to figure something else out. I try a freemount. Nope. I use a piler of the building and I’m off, again, in fromt of the uni. 3rd try’s a charm and I’m ON, riding away.
I eventually have to cross Main street again and this time the road is full of cars and trucks. I’m thinking that I really need to start investing time to learn to idle. That would be usefull for these times. Right turn it is, cross the street when traffic allows. Wind myself back to my road and onward to the apartment.
Gee, that was a fast trip. I need more. I try a freemount and nail it. I had to be rolling forward a tad to get it, but I got it.
Off again, to Subway for food. Then, I figure I’ll go down town just because. Then pass through town passing the elementary school. It’s just letting out and the kids seem to like the Coker as much as I do. to the park that I usally Muni from. I find myself at the trailhead. Now, I was smart enough to bring my wrist guards and a helmet…But I decide that nope, fear of a taco keeps me off the trail. The parking lot is gravel. I soon discover that Cokers and gravel and sharp turns don’t mix. I ride a couple laps around the park and I’m back into town.
About this time I’m getting thirsty so I do wah anyone would do. I stop by a bar and get a beer, and a water.
These guys are getting used to me stopping by so most of the regulars don’t even give me a 2nd look anymore.
Such a nice day. I ride the walking/biking/(and now that I’m in town, unicycling) path down past the middle school, which is getting out as well, about 30 minutes after the elem. school. good comments from the kids. I keep going and soon I’m on the road to work, Buena Vista Correctional Facility. About 3 miles and I’m at the back gate, ride on in past tower 2 and stop by the boiler house to show off my new toy to Granzella. Turns out he’s giving an interview to a lady that used to ride back in 7-8 grade. If she gets hired, I’m gonna get her riding again. Then it’s off, and back on with the 2nd free mount attempt. I get a few shouts from afar. I can’t tell what they are saying, nor do I care. Inmates never have good things to say, especially when it’s about an officer on a unicycle. They tend to do that from their cell windows, and it’s impossible to know which window it’s coming from anyway.
So on around the grounds and down the 3/4 mile drive way to Tower 1 and the front gate. Go inside to get a drink of water. I’m walking past South Unit which must have been in the gym, because no yells from the cell windows today.
I few good comments from co-workers leaving for the day. I freemount first try this time, look at the watch and time my ride back home. After all, I’m gonna need to know how long it takes if I’m gonna ride to work when the weather gets warmer. It’s about 5 miles I think. It took me 23-24 minutes, and it’s uphill all the way against the wind. My previous time was 35 minutes on the 24 inch Torker, down hill with the wind to my back.
I really like this Coker. It’s about 4:30 pm now. It was a great ride.
I had read every post about Cokers since I found out about them . I was worried about the wheel being very prone to tacos the way people where talking. To me, the wheel seemed pretty durable. I didn’t go off any curbs and didn’t hop or anything, but this will be for roads only.
The Coker is indeed faster than a 24 inch wheel, but I didn’t find it to be scary fast. I didn’t fall at speed and I’m using stock cranks. If any of that changes, I may feel differently.
The bright yellow on the seat was getting “spit” on by the tire every time I went through a puddle. I plan on swapping this seat with the identicle black one presently on my Muni, so that’s not a big deal. I wonder if that yellow will draw peoples attention to my smokin’ bu… never mind. -----Well, I just swapped them and now we’ll see.
There were a few times that I was sure I was gonna fall. I found the big tire just rolled over the bumps and as I tried to pedal out of it, I did, and kept going. That cruise control feeling, ya know? I can get used to this. The wheel feels like a giant fly-wheel that wants to keep going once it’s turning fast. It’s also not as hard to go slow as I had envisioned. Turning while going slow IS harder than a smaller wheel, but I expected that. I also found that my inner leg would occationally touch the upper part of the wheel. The Coker tire is smooth and I had on thick fleece pants over thick poly-pro pants so I felt next to nothing. Not sure how this will be with shorts on in the spring and summer. I may learn to not rub the tire by then anyway so I’m not too worried.
I also found that snow and ice is a bad thing on a Coker. Maybe not fresh snow, but this snow has been on the ground for over a week now and is the crunchy stuff with hard footprints and such. I did UPD a couple times and almost UPD several more. I wish this town had more sidewalks That would be a good thing too.
I encourage everyone to try a Coker. You may be hooked, so be ready to buy one if you try one. This one was one of the “re-manufatured”$300 ones from www.unicycle.com .
Well, that’s about it I guess.