coker wheel set

I bought a used Coker Big One with a vee brake an pi bar this spring. I knew it had a bent wheel when I bought it but it was more bent than I thought when I tried to true it with the help of a b*ker friend. Just riding it on the road, I hoped it would be OK. I took the brake off due to the rim and the pi bar because I couldn’t even ride holding the seat handle for long yet and didn’t want to beat it up. I didn’t ride much this spring and summer but have been riding the Coker and the Oregon that I just got several times a week this fall. In the last week and a half I have gotten to where I can ride holding the seat handle most of the time. After putting the pi bar on just now I noticed a broken spoke.
Coker does not list a rim or wheel set in their spare parts for sale. I emailed them but expect to hear that they don’t sell them separately.
UDC only sells the 36 hole stealth 2 but I can get one machined for rim brakes. This would require a new hub from my understanding. The wide UDC cotterless hub says it will not fit a Coker frame. The only reason I can think of that it wouldn’t work is the hub is listed at 125mm and the Coker is listed at 128mm. Can I shim the bearings out 1.5mm on each side. Is there anything else I am missing here? Anyone know a source for 48 hole 36er rims?

Are you saying you want to buy a new wheel cuz you have a broken spoke? Why don’t you just buy a new spoke?

In order to get the wheel anywhere near straight spoke tension was all over the place. This will continue to break spokes with uneven tension, correct? Also after having a brake on the Oregon I would love to have one on the Coker and it isn’t going to happen with this wheel.

That means that the rim is bent, not out of true. A good bike mechanic will be able to actually bend the rim relatively straight again. I had to do this with one of my wheels.

It has been several months sence we worked on it so my memory is fuzzy. It seems to me that it had two deflections to one side, one bigger than the other, both within a section about a third of the circumference of the wheel. Also in another spot one of the virtical sides of rim was pushed in a little.
The guy that helped me is a road b*ke guy so a 36er is quite different for him.
Also as I said before a usable brake would really make me happy. The last several blocks home are really steep for me. I don’t mind walking up steep hills but after using a brake for the first time on the Oregon, walking down on the 36 is disappointing. I actually rode all the way down on my last ride but that was with a strong headwind and my knees were killing me.

The UDC hub won’t work because the flanges are set a little wider, and they end up hitting the frame. For a rim call Coker and see if they can help you, also try Goudurix. Call them, don’t just look at the sites. I have gotten lucky finding stuff that Goudurix didn’t have on the site. Fwiw, Josh at UDC told me awhile back that the Coker rim is the same as the QuAx rim.

You will need a new spoke, but with 48 I would bet that you could still get the wheel pretty good without it.

To fix your wheel it needs to be detensioned, and then bent back straight and round. The easiest way to straighten it is to remove the spokes, and use a flat surface as a gauge for flatness. Use a couple of 2x4 blocks to support the rim on either side of a “high” spot, and a rubber mallet to correct the deflection. I have done this on many rims in the past, and it works really well. You will probably have to hit harder than you think, and be careful not to dent the rim.

Roundness is harder to fix because it is hard to gauge it out of the wheel. At the shop we had a tool for pulling flat spots out of rims. We would detension until the rim was showing its true colors, then loosen the spokes at the flat spot a bit more before pulling the rim out. For high spots it was the rubber mallet again.

Good luck!

I would be really surprised if the wheel can’t be salvaged. I would be happy to give it a shot if your not in a hurry to get it up and running. I’m sure we can find a replacement spoke in town. Pull the whole wheel apart, straighten out the rim, then rebuild. I have plenty of spare time, and the ultimate set of tools :slight_smile:

Thanks jtrops.
Goudurix doesn’t have a separate rim but would sell a qu-ax wheel set for “at least $300” but the hub and probably spokes aren’t usable for the Coker.
Coker doesn’t sell rims or spokes but will sell a wheel set for $250 with $30 shipping.
UDC doesn’t sell Coker anything other than the whole unicycle. They won’t even cut spokes for a Coker.
The other thing I didn’t mention in my first post is the tire on this thing is splitting on the sidewall from age. So there is an additional cost.
I can think of three options. If I can straighten the wheel I need a source for spokes and a tire and can be running for around $100. I can get a wheel set from Coker and a tire for around $365. Or I can scrap the Coker and see what kind of mood my wife is in and decide between a KH and an Oricle.
I have nothing to loose trying to straighten the wheel first. Anyone know where to get Coker spokes?

Great offer Anton.
I will see my friend at work tonight and see if he is interested in working on it. If not I would love some help. Either way we should go for a ride when I have a working 36er again.

Coker Spokes are going to be much longer than anything you can source locally unless someone has 36’er parts on hand. A while back someone (Sask?) made some spokes by clipping a spoke and threading the hook end, then joining it to another spoke with a nipple. It’s a bit cludgy, but it would get you a spoke for cheap or free. Another option is to get a piece of 2mm welding rod, thread one end for a nipple and put a z bend in the other end.

UDC will sell uncut spokes but will not cut them because Coker is not consistent with wheel size so the length needed varies. Also she mentioned that when they cut those spokes they often get cross threaded when recutting the threads and have to throw half of them away. So I just need to buy half a dozen spokes when I buy a tire and find a LBS that will cut and thread my spokes. I was just hoping to be able buy the right spokes.

I’m having a hell of a time trying to get spokes for my old stealth rims right now… Pretty pissed at UDC US.

The word is that UDC UK is lowering their price on penny farthing spokes within the next month or so and can cut and roll them to any size you need.

I’m having to do this after getting tossed around by UDC US and being lied to repeatedly about what it needs to be a working wheel again.

I’m guessing you could get spokes from this place:

Also, how many spokes do you need? I broke a spoke on my Coker a year or so ago, and was able to order replacements from UDC at that time. They might have stopped due to problems since then. Anyway, I only needed 1, but bought 5 so I’d have spares. So if you only need one or two, I can spare them. I wasn’t aware of the length inconsistency issue, so you might want to measure the ones you have first, just to be on the safe side.

cheers, LanceB

edit: I also have an old nightrider tire that isn’t in the greatest shape in the world, but it works and you can have it if you want (I only replaced it because UDC was having a sale a while back). I was just keeping it as a spare.

Wow, I haven’t ever cross threaded spokes when I added more threads. I wonder if the pitch of the threading dies are different than the pitch of the original threads. I guess maybe the dies could be dull. Anyway, not great customer service.

I think the only reason there would be a variety of spoke lengths is that there have been two different Coker wheels. As long as the spokes are for the same kind of wheel, steel or aluminum rim, they should be the right length.

If LanceB can get you going you will be set; otherwise, you could try “the unicycle factory” and see if you could get a spoke made to order. Come to think of it I could probably make one if I could get some 2mm stainless steel wire/welding rod. How long would it need to be?

So my b*ke guy thinks it might just be a bad spoke and not related to the bent wheel. The spoke broke 1/2" from the bend. He said they almost always break at the bend. It also looks like it had been cracked about a third of the way through for a while. So his recommendation is to replace the spoke and try it (just like muni123 said).

Thanks for the very generous offer. I only need one spoke at this time. I will send you a pm.

Thanks for all the info and the great offer of building spokes. Hopefully I won’t need more for this uni.

I am always amazed at how knolagable and generous the unicycling community is.


Hi Matt,
Got your PM, spokes in the mail. (I sent two, you should always have a spare. I still have a couple extras, and I don’t ride the Coker that much anymore, since building up my G32. :smiley: ) (These measure out to 359.4mm. I think they’ll fit.)
Hope this gets you going! Cheers!

Lance you rock!
I will keep you guys updated.
Thanks all.

quick update

I threw the new spoke in last Monday when Lance’s care package arrived. Thanks Lance! I did a quick ride right after but haven’t had time to ride since. I checked the tension last night with a borrowed gauge. Apparently checking a few spokes with the squeeze test every now and then isn’t good enough. I had 4 loose spokes. I guess this explains the broken spoke. Maybe some threadlocker is in order. A more thorough check more often is definitely in order. I haven’t looked at it since spring so my bad.

The larger bend in the wheel is at the seam. In fact one side of the rim is wider than the other at the seam. I now remember looking at it before I bought it thinking the brake wouldn’t work well. But one ride on it and I had to have a 36.

Meanwhile I convinced the better half that a 36er with disc brake is the perfect Christmas present and the UDC cyber sale was the time to order one.

So I will probably pass the Coker along after I get the new one set up. We need more 36er converts.


+1 for the good advice.

A few weeks ago my 36 developed a faint squeak, about a week ago I decided to take a quick look at my wheel, checked the spokes and sure enough 2 of them were totally loose. Got the wheel back true and tight, I will definitely check it more often than every 6 months.

I guess there is no taking short cuts in wheel building. Every wheel I get that’s already been built always needs a lifetime of work to keep it true. When I build one from scratch, and do it right, it never needs a thing.

Maybe this weekend I’ll rebuild my 36 wheel.