I’ve been riding my Nimbus Oracle 29er for sometime now but just feel for the off-road stuff it just isn’t agile enough.
I’ve always fancied a Hatchet but having never tried one out it would be a gamble going for one.
In terms of sizing, my only experience of a smaller wheel was a heavy 26” Nimbus that I no longer own. For me I felt i had the most control on that sized unicycle and learnt more.
I’d consider a 26” Hatchet but my only concern is tyre availability down the line as it seems not many places in the U.K. sell them any more, not even unicycle.co.U.K. It started me thinking maybe this size of wheel may be for discontinue(?).
There seems to be a deal on 26” Hatchets at the moment so thats appealing for obvious reasons my concern of the above paragraph looms in my mind (maybe that’s why they are on offering them at discounted rate).
It’s useful to know the frame is the same though out the range so I could fit a larger wheel in the future if parts were hard to come by… but then it feels like I’m throwing money away for the sake of.
So you are looking for a more agile unicycle and you are considering a Hatchet? – I think you are on the wrong path, my friend.
If you want to know more about how Hatchet’s ride and feel, I’d recommend the forum search function.
If you are looking for an more agile (m)uni ride, how about getting a rather light-weight 650B wheel and putting it into your Oracle 29er frame?
Can confirm, get a really nice tire, carbon rim, good light spokes, TPU tube/tubeless and you’ll find a big difference in the ride quality. Even just starting with a lighter tire and TPU tube is a good way. The LBS near me recommended that even 300g you’ll feel a difference.
I have to remind you that the hatchet 26x4.8, despite being marketted as a 26er, is no smaller than your 29er. Also because of its monstrously wide tire, it’s by no mean an agile unicycle.
If you want to ride over roots and possibly even “ride up” a sidewalk curb? If you like to ride offroad uphills where you have to rock your upperbody and muscle the unicycle? If you like to ride on snow or beach sand? Then the almost 5" fat tire hatchet would be great for you.
However, if you just want to cruise with minimal effort with stumpy cranks and high tire psi? Forget about it.
I’d basically echo what everyone has said so far. Compared to a narrower tyre set up a Hatchet can’t be called agile.
However what I can add is way back when I first learnt to ride and had a 20” and Nimbus 24” - I was looking at the Fat Nimbus Oregon 26” or a KH29er.
The advice I got and the general consensus was … don’t go with the Oregon. Get a 29er! It’s more versatile etc etc
At that time I was soaking up all the videos I could from Terry The Unigeezer on the Oregon and I just felt that wheel looked more fun and in someways I didn’t care what other people were saying.
Perhaps due to all the advice and general prevailing wind towards the more normal ride of a 29” wheel (non-fat) when the Oregon did turn up (for me then) it felt remarkably responsive.
Now, when I recently took it out for a ride - it was hard hard work compared to my narrower wheels, but I don’t think I’ll ever forget the joy and buzz I got of the rolling floating 26” behemoth.
It does require a more determined riding style and you may find it more work than your current 29er but there’s also the chance you love the way it cuts through roots and mud in a big tyre way and this might improve your riding from that angle. You may find the struggles on a Hatchet then pay dividends when you go back out on your 29er.
Fat 26” tyres don’t seem to be hard to find and aren’t I think dying out. So I’d not worry about that. You could check with UDC UK - as I can’t recall personally, how narrow a tyre the rim will take. If you later wanted a change you could see if a 3.8” tyre works for some sort of happy middle ground if the really fat tyres get too… tiring!
So I’d say don’t be going into this expecting a nimble wheel, but if you’re drawn to it, then perhaps that’s a sign to go for it as you will probably have a lot of fun