Coker Questions

I am very interested in getting a coker, but I dont have much money. What kind of coker should I get if I can’t afford the super strong one. also, is a brake necessary on a Coker? Thanks for your help.


The ‘normal’ Coker is the cheaper one. $300 us or so.

An option for those without the funds is getting a 29" with 4" cranks. It’s still a large wheel, you go quite speedy, and some people prefer this over the Coker. They are crazy, of course, but it is an option.

The ‘cheap’ Coker is fine. It’s a weaker wheel, but you learn to ride with finnesse. I take mine on pretty gnarly trails, and it’s fine. The thought of it taco’ing is always with me, though.

Save up your $ and get a Coker. If you don’t like it, I’m sure you could sell it real quick.

There’s also the remanufactured Coker, which amounts to a new unicycle with a used/refurbished rim. Having only used the Airfoil rim, I can’t say how scetch a remanufactured standard rim would be. Pay attention to the prices and the saddles…

Remanufactured Coker - KH Velo saddle standard - $295

Regular Coker - Viscount saddle standard - $329

Regular Coker - KH Velo upgrade - $357

I would say the KH saddle, or at least a Miyata is a necessity. So, then, the difference in price is about $60 between the standard and the remanufactured.

I’m very pleased I got the brake on mine. It’s not strictly necessary, though. It’s very nice to have it on the downhills, but if you avoid stupid-steep hills, your fine without a brake.

Free up a thursday or a friday. Then drive north for about two hours OR find something really cool to tempt me to drive south for about two hours. Then, you can demo the SpaceCruiser and see what you can/can’t live without.

the crappiest part of the Coker is the crappy steel rim. Is it worth getting a used one that’s on the refurbished one? hmmmmmm

I wouldn’t.

I’d rather get a brand new one, and spend a few more bucks on the Velo.

I’ve written up plenty of my Coker rides for this forum - and they’ve all been done on a standard Coker with the steel rim, a Viscount saddle, and upgraded pedals. The only other modification (and that’s recent) is the addition of a handle.

The standard steel wheel is both the charm and the weakness of the Coker. It’s charm is the massive flywheel effect; it’s weakness is that it is prone to go out of true. Strip the tyre, tube and tape and get the local bike shop to true the wheel and tension the spokes, and you will get good service out of it - although mine’s ready for a further overhaul after many miles of hard riding.

Compared with a 28/29? To get the same flywheel effect the 28/29 needs shortish cranks (110mm approx.) and then you find you’re pedalling at a very brisk cadence. At cruising speeds, the Coker is more relaxed; at full speed, it’s a bomber. Big grins.

The 28/29 is more instantly accessible. If you can ride a 24, then you can ride a 28. if you can ride a 28 on 125s, you can ride it on 110s. A Coker, on the other hand, takes a bit of application before you can ride it well. I was starting to get bored with mine (“Is this all it does?”) until I was persuaded to ride in the Red Bull. Although I had to drop out fo the team, the training and practice for the race convinced me that the Coker is a fantastic machine to ride when you can ride it well.

With 150mm cranks, and suitable terrain, with a few ups and downs, but no long descents, a brake is unnecessary.

I have achieved the following on the standard Coker (plus upgraded pedals and handle):
54 miles in a day.
12.95 miles in an hour.
22 miles in 2 hours.
20 miles without dismounting.
Consistently 8 mph on fairly challenging off road tracks.
Top speed of around 15mph (possibly more when I had shorter cranks).
Idling for 100 pedal strokes (once!)
Reversing for short distances.
Freemounting at over 90% success.

And I’ve had my Coker about 14 months. 2 years ago, I couldn’t idle a 20, or freemount a 20 better than about 75%.

So don’t be afraid of the Coker, but treat it with respect, and work at it.

Would I prefer the upgrade to a lighter stronger rim? Of course, but not without some reservations. Would I upgrade the saddle? No, I prefer the Viscount to the Velo. Would I prefer a brake? I’ve never needed one yet, and I’d try to avoid using one if I had one, but the facility copuld occasionally be useful.

Do I prefer my 28? No. Apart from spares availability, durability of the wheel, and manageability in a tight spot, it has no merits. Frankly, a 24 with 102mm cranks is more fun than the 28. And cheaper and more portable.

Do you want a Coker? If you unicycle in miles or kilometres, yes. If you prefer short technical rides or tricks, no.

now are all of these prices listed US or CAN ?

thanks for all the input guys. Nick, I really hope that we can come visit you sometime, though I have no idea when we could.
I mainly do short rides and tricks, but I dont have a bike and would really like a long distance uni. If I had a coker I would go longer distances. Virginia is a very hilly state, so I think a brake would be usefull.

thanks again for all of your help guys


Check out the most recent Coker tour here. You’ll see a lot of things to think about, including a huge variation in Coker setups for long distances and very hilly terrain on pavement and on gravel.

The super strong Coker ends up costing about $1200 USD or so for a reasonable setup and is primarily for hard riders, people who use brakes a lot, or people doing 24 races and other off-road stuff. Considering the prices on the mountain bikes that people are using in the same events, this cost is quite reasonable.

Although people do these things with stock Cokers, in general they end up having quite a few problems with tacoed wheels, brakes that are difficult to use because of rim irregularities, broken spokes, and brakes that rub on ascents.

People that are doing long tours nowadays are equipped with brakes for safety and for optimum use of their legs in covering ground. Why work as hard on the downhill as you did on the uphill?

For occasional, experimental, entry-level, or less hard use, the various options between are fine. Having a wheel that incorporates the Airfoil rim and at least the Suzue hub is the best upgrade possible for a stock Coker and, to me, should be the first.