Crank length for hopping

NOT really serious here, especially as it implies NOT for a 36er, BUT…

How to turn a unicycle into a pogo stick:

  1. get a tire that is very fat and bouncy, but otherwise fairly small (but not so small that there is a risk of pedals hitting the step);
  2. make sure the seat functions as a handle (as it is not going to be sat on);
  3. adjust seat height and position purely for hand gripping;
  4. get a crank length as close to zero as possible;
  5. have a brake that is permanently locked on;
  6. practice, practice, practice!

I think we can safely assume the cranks to be rigid. The tire is a few orders of magnitude “more springy”, so the impact crank flexibility has, if any, is tiny.

Pretty likely. The question for me always is how big the “reasonable” window is and I suspect in this case it covers pretty much anything between 110 and 160mm. At least for hopping up stairs sideways.

I think it still comes down to personal preference/your body dimensions. I know for me, I don’t feel a big difference even for higher jumps. I’ve seen both with or without Q-factor preferred by pretty high level trials riders, but I don’t think anyone would describe it as making a huge difference for them.

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I think as you get tired shorter cranks would be better.

This is based on my assumption that as you get tired you will be less precise in both hopping up and landing so forces may be not so well balanced on either side of the unicycle. If that is the case, with longer cranks you could get more twisting on the vertical axis of the unicycle as well as a net torque on the axle potentially causing you to fall off (ie the wheel unintentionally goes round). Shorter cranks would give smaller unbalanced torques to cause twist around the vertical axis and motion of the wheel around the axle.

Just my theory though…

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