Coker Rim

Hey has anyone else seen the new coker rim? Its double walled and aluminum, but I’m really pissed off because its 48 hole. Whats the point of making it so fancy and then adding all those extra spokes. I think its really stupid to have that many spokes on that wheel, its so overbuilt right now. Plus that means that anyone who wanted an Airfoil is probably screwed now because now they can’t use the new alu rim and my guess is now that coker is making alu rims people won’t want the Airfoils.

Anyways I’m just ranting and annoyed because I could have had the last airfoil but UDC hates my credit cards, and now I may have missed out on the last chance to get (in my mind) the only good 36 rim.

So what do others think of it?

I wish we could get some feedback from the manufacturers about why they’re using 48 spoke 36er rims. Does it really provide a comparable strength improvement to using a wide hub? If it did, then it might be worth it - some riders seem to find a narrow hub faster, although I’ve never tried one myself. Alternatively, if there were lighter guage spokes available then the weight penalty wouldn’t have to be so severe…

I’ve not seen a really convincing argument for why we should want 48 spoke rims, and most people seem fairly unenthusiastic about it… I wonder why the manufacturers are moving that way: they surely must have some kind of motivation there.

Anyhow, despite their being a niche product, the quality of the entry-level 36er technology does seem to be advancing at quite a high rate, which pleases me even if I can’t use all the new stuff…

On a related note: first they introduce the frame, then they introduce some other random parts, then they introduce the rim… What we have left to be announced is the new hub, and what the tyre choice will be… I assume that next Thursday they’ll announce the new hub. Things should be really interesting the week after that: because by my reckoning they’ll either release details on the complete uni (if they’re going to keep using the original Coker tyre) or more excitingly they’ll announce a new tyre (maybe even a couple of new tyres). Unfortunately, I’ll be on holiday in two weeks time so I will miss it! Doh!

If it’d be overbuilt with the double-walled alu rim and the 48 spokes, couldn’t you just build it with 32 or 36 spokes instead? I know I’ve read on Sheldon Brown’s site about building strong wheels even when you don’t use every spoke hole. Cosmetically, you may not like it as much, though.

BTW, I don’t own a 36er, so it’s not something that affects me. I’ve thought about this issues before, though, because I’d considered building a muni wheel around the Qu-Ax hub but didn’t want to use a 48 spoke rim.

So what’s so bad about a 48 spoke rim?

Twelve extra spokes worth of unnecessary weight, and the associated additional work to wheel-build or true.

Also the fact that its way harder to get a 48 hole hub. I wanted to use my skinny hub that I love because I’m used to the skinny hubs, but its a 36 hole. Other people probably want to use the super wide hub which is also 36 hole.

If the rim is worthwhile, I might just build a 24-spoke wheel… :sunglasses:

Ooops, just saw the offset spoke hole drillings, which would not center the spokes if using only every other rim hole. :angry:

Hmm, use a thinner gauge of spokes, keep to standard hub from Qu-Ax, then use your choice of any ISIS crank, light heavy, long or short.

With the extra spokes, seems like it will be sturdy, even with a smaller hub, to be just as good as a regular airfoil with extra wide hub.

I don’t know though, nor do I really care.

Presumably because Qu-Ax have always been into 48 hole hubs and the parts are probably made in the same factory (the old Coker and Qu-Ax 36ers were identical).

What’s the betting it’ll be an ISIS splined hub, not too unlike the Qu-Ax one? :roll_eyes:

I doubt it unfortunately. They know that’s what everybody wanted so I would have thought they would have made more noise about it if they had in fact developed a new tyre. I suspect it wouldn’t be worth the development costs for them to make a new tyre for such a limited market. But stranger things have happened…


EDIT: I’ve just noticed the Coker rim seems to have a braking surface, so it seems they’re not the same as the Qu-Ax this time, apart from in hole count. I take back some of my accusations :o

Yup, like developing everything else for such a limited market, when developing tyres is their core competency and namesake, i.e. the Coker TYRE Company. So they’re not fiddling with what they know best and where they have economies of scale, but they’re going big(ger) in all these other areas of hardware design. Confusing to me.

Perhaps what we’ll see next is a 42" tyre, and all the other stuff they’ve been previewing is actually cut to take the new sizes.

The new cranks in the previous picture looked cotterless to me, so maybe it’s really a new hub. The saddle also looked a bit different to other designs, but maybe that’s just an optical illusion.

Well, it just seemed to me that they were holding back and releasing the less interesting details first; a lot of people were waiting for them to announce a new rim too, but they’ve kept that under wraps for a while. I’ll not be surprised if they don’t announce a new tyre, but I’m still holding out hope that they’ll consider it.

Let’s hope you’re right - although the TA tyre is pretty good for road, and can be notched to make a decent xc tyre. A lighter weight tyre might be nice for road use, although I hardly unicycle on the road so it wouldn’t really affect me. The old octopus-tread Coker tyre probably made quite a good all-round tyre, but I’ve only ever ridden TAs.

As for the hub, I do remember seeing that crank picture and it did look like a square-taper fitting. So all the stuff I said about Coker/Qu-Ax collaboration seems to be completely wrong then :o


Might seem a bit perverse of me to say this now ;), but actually a collaboration would seem logical… Maybe the rim is the same as the Qu-Ax but they add the machined braking surface and Coker branding?

As for the hub, I guess perhaps as they’re creating a reasonably entry-level unicycle they wouldn’t want to move to ISIS anyhow (although if more folks standardised on ISIS, it would be kinda cool).

Finally, re the tyres, I had the impression Coker is into fairly low volume tyre manufacture even for their car business - they’re already a bit specialised. My fingers are tightly crossed, anyhow.

Larger wheels need more spokes for the same lateral stiffness. The weight of spokes is probably less than the material required to make the rim as stiff with less spokes. Also mass at the spokes has less inertia than mass on the rim (50g in the center of the spokes = 25g at the end of the spokes)

Even with the super wide hub I notice a fair amount of lateral flex in my airfoil. granted for road riding it is perfectly fine but I get a bit more flex than I would like when riding Muni.

Im sure that getting a 48spoke superwide hub made would not be a problem.

As for the tire, I would love to see the option of a knobbie becouse I have the recuring problem of the tire slipping or spinning out in mud (TA).


That’s probably the wheelbuild. The flex is hardly noticeable on my narrow hub steel rim with a decent build.

There is a hassle with 48 spokes which is that the existing coker specific hubs are in 36 spoke plus both geared hubs are in 36 spoke.

Coker spokes actually do weight a fair bit too, a 48 spoke coker probably has 1 kg of spokes compared to 750g or so on a typical one. (it’s some insane weight like that anyway).


I’m sure you must be talking about the 12G “standard” spokes here. I don’t have any spokes to weigh…but given the dimensions of a 14G SS spoke and its density, plus the weight of nipples, totals about 382g for a 36 spoke wheel by my calculations. For a 48 spoke, I get about 510g, which means about a 127g difference between 36 and 48.

UDC UK says the Airfoil weighs 1232g, while unisk8r claims they are in the 1300g range. This new Coker alu rim is 1170g, meaning a difference of only about 62g.

Overall then, lightening the rim and adding twelve spokes results in an increase in weight of about 60g.

Sounds like so far the best way to lighten the rim and still have 36 spoke holes is to drill your airfoil like unisk8r has. He’s gotten it down to almost 1000g, much lighter than Coker’s rim.

While the UDC web page for the Airfoil rim still says “2 lb. 12.2 oz.” (= 1254g), that was for the old anodized finish. With the X-type rims, the powdercoated finish over the anodizing adds quite a few grams.

As with any product, all we can do with the new Coker rim once it’s available is to actually weigh it.

If we’re lucky they’ll have 36 spoke rims available as aftermarket items. If not, well then we’ll just have to suffer through the transition of moving over to a 48 spoke standard for 36" wheels. That is going to be a painful change for some, especially those who have 36 spoke geared hubs. It also means KH would need to make two different geared hubs. One 36 spoke version for gearing up a muni wheel or 29er wheel and a 48 spoke version for gearing up a Coker wheel. That would be a mess.

is it possible to lace a 48 hole rim to 36 hole hub?