Electric (self balancing) unicycles

electric unicycles and one wheels bother me a lot. it’s a unicycle but without the skill. as the EUC’s become more common i fear they will gather a larger following than their predecessors the true unicycles.

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Stay calm, cause you know you re riding “the real thing”. :wink:

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They’ve been around for a long time and I very rarely see one in the wild.

Also, they’re not as easy to ride as you’d expect.

I think it’s similar to an e-bike with full suspension. All of a sudden people think they can ride a bike, until they crash on an area which does require real skill…

The EUC’s are illegal to ride on public roads here, so we won’t be seeing much of them for sure, but in terms of stunts and balance it can be a cool thing I guess…

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I think they look fun, and I’d like to try one. Can’t see myself owning one though. I already have enough things to charge.

Like Mark says they are illegal here like most electrical toys. It sucks to live in NL when you like to try those out. Unfortunately this doesn’t result in more people starting to learn true unicycles.
I would never feel to be in as much a control on an electrical uni than on a real one. A hard brake will still prolly end up in a face plant.

Tbh, I like the concept of EUC a lot. I believe it has the potential to transform the way people travel in highly urbanized areas. Actually, in my previous job I was in a situation where EUC would make a lot of sense for commuting, though it would not be so time efficient as going on a motorbike. Unfortunately, in Prague EUCs are grouped under the same category as Segways and therefore banned in most places.

Pity that governments seem so keen on banning EUCs instead of figuring out how to draft a proper legislation covering such things. Like they are fighting against people using cars and motorbikes due to their impact on the environment and on the other hand are unwilling to help such interesting electricity-powered alternatives to become more mainstream.

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If an electric unicycle goes wrong, it can spell disaster for the rider. Yes, having a UPD from a manual uni can be a problem, but at least you control your speed manually. Perhaps electric unis need to be speed limited to a run-out-able speed.

I don’t understand why that bothers you :thinking:

Not an issue for me either, and unicycles always have been a niche thing. The only thing that bothers me is that they’re called “unicycle”, so when you start talking about unicycles, people sometimes first believe you’re talking about electric unicycles when you’re not :grinning_face_with_smiling_eyes:

That said, I tried an electric unicycle once a few years ago and that was very, very fun and smooth to ride.
It was fairly easy to ride too, but maybe know how to ride a unicycle helps?

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Yeah, from unicyclist’s perspective I agree with you completely. From the perspective of a motorbiker (who used to ride a scooter in speeds around 70 km/h dressed just in a t-shirt, shorts and a crappy helmet), I think EUCs are pretty safe in comparison. The fastest one currently in production goes how fast? Like 45 km/h or something?

I’m against limiting the speed - just limit it on the pavement and around pedestrians or something and let the nature take care of those who are too daring and scoff at proper PPE.

From what I’ve heard it takes some time to learn, few hours usually.

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Unfortunately, those who are too daring can also hurt not only themselves but other people. :pensive:

Well, you have daring people everywhere. And, daring people in cars or on motorbikes are a lot more dangerous to others, than those on EUCs.

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This year those weird unicycles with two wheels and a chain from the pedals to one wheel became really famous. I’m told they are a lot easier to ride than a real unicycle and in a lot of countries they are even allowed to be ridden in traffic on main roads. I fear with those becoming more famous they will gather a larger following than their one wheeled predecessor. (Some people even claim they predate unicycles and always attracted a larger crowd - but I think that’s just fake news…)

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“The fastest one currently in production goes how fast? Like 45 km/h or something?”

The fastest one I’m aware of is the Veteran Sherman and it supposedly has been clocked at over 50 MPH, or 80 km/h.

I seem them all the time here in Oslo. They seem pretty popular, and riders of “electric unicycles” definitely outnumber those of us on “acoustic unicycles” :rofl:

I am in two minds about them. I prefer people use micro mobility transportation devices then say a car for short journeys for environmental reasons. On the flip side better yet to be “active” and unlike a pedelec ebike, you do literally nothing on these. It looks really lazy.

P.S. Often when out cycling I cross paths with riders of EUC, they wave or nod or make some comment about one wheel. So to some extent I feel we are kindred spirits.

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In such cases I think you should clarify that you do not ride an electric unicycle but rather an acoustic unicycle. Then quickly leave, while they try and work out what they hell you are talking about.

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I was passed an EUC today on the cycle path, I actually got a thumbs up from the rider which was unusual, all I could manage in reply was a nod, being a little busy at the time balancing without a computer and peddling without a motor. They do look fun, and I think not so easy to ride at first. But I’m sure after a while the novelty would wear off. It’s just taking you for a ride, more so than you are riding it. Later in today’s ride a pair of electric scooters tried really hard to overtake me, they are faster but not by much (I was doing 20kph) but they seemed to think they should be passing as if they were somehow superior. Again, where is the fun and achievement?

Yeah I too somehow prefer the EUC riders. :wink:

P.S. I also ride a scooter (again not electric, see below) and very much enjoy overtaking electric kick scooters. On a flat it is possible with a little effort because they are limited as you say and down a hill it is super easy because mine rolls pretty nicely. I often get into the 40s (km/h) and sometimes with the right (long and steep hill) into the 50s.

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The closest hill that will allow me to get over 40 has a speed limit of 40… but on this device I am classified as a pedestrian (unlike an e-scooter which is a bike and thus a “vehicle”). Pedestrians are not bound by road speed limits. Due to this loop hole, I am not breaking the law. :wink:

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Some peeps run faster than others, I will always complain and say it rides too slowly if they were to do that :smiley:
But basically here they are by law.
I agree with VitR that governments don’t spend more effort into allowing electrical transportation alternatives when they always talk about the climate. In NL travelling by car is still far cheaper than taking public transportation which even has been moved to the private sector.
I just can’t take the government seriously here, also enforcing people to only drive 100kph during the day everywhere, which has a very low impact on the environment as well.
‘Politicians’ and ‘intelligence’ don’t go together.