Coker freewheel hub on a uni.

This has been experimented with using bike parts I’m sure.
Looking at the Coker ad, it looks like the 36" big wheel bike wheel assembly would bolt right on to a Coker Big One. Coasting with your feet on the pedals would have to be easier than on the fork crown. Does anyone think there is a use for doing this? Could braking and pedaling be coordinated well enough to ride with control? I’ve seen videos of bikers riding wheelies as long as they want going up and down hills using this method. Seems like a rider could conserve energy if coasting was an option…opinions?

Coasting has been brought up before. Personally, I think it could work given enough time and practice. However, it seems that since you can’t put back pressure on the pedals, it’s more difficult to balance.

It seems like a coaster brake hub wouldn’t be too hard to ride - you couldn’t ride backwards, but as long as you were headed forwards it would be OK.

I wouldn’t expect to get much benefit from coasting per se, but as long as you could stay upright you could make yourself a multispeed giraffe from one of the three-speed coaster brake hubs out there.

It would be great for road riding but you would need a brake for sure.

The problem isn’t not being able to ride backwards. It’s that we constantly put back pressure on the pedals subconciously to stay balanced, without even realizing it. That’s where I think you’d run into trouble…

I just sent an email to Coker to get prices on a wheel assy alone, up to a complete unicycle. Maybe tomorrow I’ll have some info.
That’s what I was wondering, how much to riding is “automatic” that we don’t even realize we’re doing?
It seems like it would be a basic adjustment in riding style, like handlebars are. It doesn’t seem like a major adjustment like learning a 2 wheel stack.

Backpressure on a normal fixed hub, and on a coaster brake hub, would do pretty much the same thing as long as you were moving forwards (slow you down, pull the uni backwards under you to keep balance). That’s why it seems like it would be easy to learn.

Oh, and edit to my previous post, I meant jackshaft, not giraffe.

Yeah, almost a decade ago some folks tried it and posted their results all over the Interwebz. Consensus was that it was really really hard to ride. Edit: unless you’re Roger Davies.

You try it, post a review with video, be safe and wear protective gear.

I would love to coast down a hill with my feet on the pedals, but I think Killian is correct, we do a lot more balance correction using rearward pedal pressure than we realize. It would be a fun project, might be easiest to get the hub and cranks, then build it into an esisting wheel or buy a compete wheel if you don’t have an old wheel to rebuild.

I’d rather have one in a small uni since that’s where the coasting would benefit me the most and if I mess up I’d be closer to the ground :roll_eyes:

Thanks for posting this! I hadn’t seen that video before. I remember seeing a video of a 20" freewheeling unicycle in a suburban environment but can’t find it again. I saw this one on youtube:

I would say it’s not very practical but I would probably get one given the opportunity. I wonder if it’s slightly more dangerous than regular coasting (especially two feet on the frame) with regards to getting tangled in the pedals.

Hmmm, Now I was thinking safer, because your feet are on the pedals.
You could really have a spectacular UPD if you were coasting too fast to catch up pedaling and started going forward. Like on a bike when you can’t pedal fast enough to catch up anymore…Whew that could be nasty :astonished: Definately wear full riot gear when learning:D

Recieved a reply from Coker:
Thank you for checking with us at Coker Cycles. At this time we do not have plans to use the coaster on the big one and if one did it would be a custom application voiding warrantable parts. Good luck with your endeavour as it sounds like a fun idea but we do not sell the complete wheel assemby for our bikes/cycles as we order for production and or warrantable repairs only.

Thank you

Richard Stephens
Web Support

I still want to give this a try, but not at the price of a new Wheelman ($800+)
I replied with “how about just the hub?” we’ll see.

A effective Brake for proofing coasting on a Coker big wheel

A smooth braking system would be vital to a successful coasting experience. I can mate a square taper disc brake crank to a Coker hub, as well as mate a UCM to a Coker frame. One challenge with the Coker frame is the threads for a Coker bearing cap are in the cap itself, so you need to rebolt from the bottom of UCM & nut from the top inside. It’s been done successfully on Brian O’s Coker. If you want to take on this project, I’d donate a square taper crank to the builder to proof it, document, and video documented “coasting learning curve”. It would be innovative and ground breaking if coasting could be introduced for big wheels.:slight_smile:

coaster hub

Hey Jona, I have a freewheeling hub that is yours if you want it!


Is that just blurry or are those spokes flat?

It looks very much like a front wheel from a drift trike - probably a Green Machine. The spokes have plastic covers over them, making them look flat, but they are very ordinary spokes. Def not bladed spokes!

A hub from a Green Machine or a Huffy Slider would probably be a lot easier to get hold of than a Coker Wheelman hub.

My 2 cents is that unicycles with freewheeling hubs have been built before and the reason they aren’t more popular is that they are hard to ride and not very practical. I’ve had a go on one and found it really difficult to ride. I doubt whether adding a brake would help.

Freewheel hub for mini penny

Hey Tony,

Is the green machine hub what the guys in Adelaide used to make their free-wheeling qu-ax mini pennies? I emailed them back in 2011 but never got a response from them.

I have a 36/16 offroad disc brake mini penny project on the cards, and a freewheeling hub would be a nice touch. Trying to work out if it is possible to modify something, or if I’ll have to get some custom work done. Any tips would be great :slight_smile:



Green Machine

You Sir are correct!

Having bought a 36 inch unicycle not so long ago I have a printed Coker Catalog. It is at home and I’m at work (on lunch of course) but I am pretty sure the printed catalog lists complete wheel sets for the Monster Cruiser. I think it was $300 for a set of one front and one back wheel. You could get one wheel with the three speed hub and coaster brake and have a spare tire, rim and tube. Plus a bunch of spokes that are too long.