Freewheel Unicycling Megathread

I mean that best freewheel riders already stated they are faster with a normal unicycle. Those statements + the fact that freewheel COULD be faster, means that there’s no one right now who is mastering freewheeling. Otherwise those who appear in that videos will write that now they are avaraging a faster ride freewheeling (considering uphill + downhill + flat), but no one wrote or said it

Ok, then I misunderstood you. In any case, speed aside, I do think more people would want to learn it as a skill because it looks fun and looks like a challenge. My impression was that few took this up because it is so hard to get hubs and/or a unicycle with a freewheel already built in. Without freewheel unicycles being readily available, nobody new can really take up the sport.

I would certainly like to have a go. The primary reason I have not tried is lack of access. I am lucky to have @UniMyra offering to lend me one of his. The only real reason I have not taken him up on the offer is that covid and stuff makes meet ups more challenging. I think I met Erlend once during this entire Covid time (to help him fix a uni) and @UniMyra not once. For other’s who do not have a friend with an obscenely large collection of unicycles, it is even harder to try and learn this skill.


So far whenever I was interested in a unicycle, I just bought it. I am still hopeful that my kids at some point in the future will grow an interest in unicycling, when they see me ride. My daughter of 7 though is smaller than the other kids in school as she is Thai and because I’m quite tall, my unicycles are too big for her at this moment. My son is only 4 mths, so there is enough time for him to grow an interest. Anyways if they decide in the future to try out different unicycles, then I won’t have bought them for nothing.
The unis that currently mostly live in the shed are the 20 freestyle (which is more of an indoor unicycle), the freewheel (which waits for me to have courage again), my very first OnlyOne unicycle that I learned unicycling on (very cheap and not comfy), the lunicycle that I don’t dare to ride, because Im afraid it will break.
The other 8 unis I ride several times a year. Ok maybe I can understand why my wife frowns upon me buying more unicycles, though I still really want to have a 24" municycle as well.

My 20" freewheel unicycle I bought from One of the last ones Roland had.

Is that a fact? I don’t think so, On uphill, freewheel is no advantage, and on flat ground, you are slower, because you can only go as fast as you can with a fixed hub while pedaling (limited by cadence), or slower while coasting / braking for balance.

I’m 99% sure if you gave Ben, Becky or any other good frewheel rider an hour on a downhill street, they could work themselfs up to going significantly faster than they could while pedaling. I certainly can be faster downhill gliding on my 20" versus pedaling it. So if you designed a ride specifically to take advantage of that (an uphill, short flat section, steep and easy downhill), sure people have “mastered” freewheeling.


Absolutely mr pennyfarthing man (hint :grin:)

Oh you can definitely borrow the penny if you like. Erlend showed an interest (or faked one) but he was definitely a bit too tall for mine. A 56" would have suited him better.

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First ride on the bicymple hub! Finally freewheeling with proper cranks :slight_smile:

With the new hub, I decided to bring back my 26" freewheel muni. The installation required M15x1 ISIS bolts, which I had to get from my local bike store.

Everything went fine on the ride, both uphill and downhill. The engagement is the same as for my JR p-hub, so it felt quite similar.

Improvements over the JR p-hub:

  1. ISIS :+1:

  2. Much smaller (normal) Q-factor

  3. Wider flange distance for a stronger wheel

Now it remains to be seen how durable it is and how long it takes until maintenance is needed. If there is no problem in the next month, I will also convert my 29" freewheel muni to a bicymple hub.


I just saw your post on Strava post and raced over here to ask you for feedback but you were too quick for me! :wink:


I had noticed the large stance on the JR hub, but hadn’t actually picked up on this as a bicymple hub advantage.

Can you quantify the difference this seems to make in how the freewheel rides?
Does it seem to affect turning while freewheeling, or make anything else freewheel specific easier?

On the wheel rebuild I also presume you reused spokes. Comparing some numbers it seems like the required spokes should be within ~1mm of Nimbus Oracle wheels, and ~2mm with KH wheels so almost certainly close enough to get away with.

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I mostly notice the Q factor when pedaling. For that, I prefer it narrower. I would need to do some more testing to see what the impact is for coasting. So far, I haven’t noticed a big difference. If a wider stance would actually be better, you could always use some KH Spirit cranks with the bicymple hub.

Exactly, I simply re-used the old spokes from my mad4one wheel (originally with a 6-pin hub). The spokes on the non-disc side could be 1-2 mm shorter, but the build turned out fine.

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Warning: I found a potential problem with the bicymple hub!

I had a UPD where the muni hit the ground hard. I immediately noticed that the brake rubbed and found one of the hub bearings sticking out by about 1 mm. The hub shell had moved laterally! The crude fix was to throw the muni to the ground with the other side down, which put things into place again.

Can’t say if this was a one-off or a real problem. It never happened during riding or any of my other UPDs. I did 3000 meters vertical in the Alps this weekend (up and down) and the hub was performing great otherwise.

This is what I’d expect to happen when you’ve not installed the correct (or any) spacers before installing your ISIS cranks.

Spacers were always going to be essential on these hubs with pressed in hub shell bearings. On the square taper hubs they have to have locking nuts/split-rings to hold things in place simply because the crank interface does not require spacers which would keep things together.

I’ll add something to the information at the start of this thread to make sure it’s clear spacers are required with this hub.

Indeed, no crank spacers since I didn’t have the right one at home and no spacers were supplied. I will make some custom ones and keep monitoring it.


UDC seem to sell all the way up to 8mm, so hopefully whatever we need can be easily purchased by most people looking to use these hubs.

Please let us know how long you end up making the spacers for your cranks (normally ~2mm shorter than the space between a crank pressed on by hand and the bearing).

Unfortunately as unicycle parts do not seem to all quite follow the ISIS spec for the crank stop (and there are obviously differing tolerances in machining of the ISIS interface for different parts too), the spacers required will be slightly different for different cranks.

Based on the dimensions of this hub and the ISIS specification, the spacers should be in the ballpark of ~6.5-7mm though.

@qu-ax, anything to share on the Sprag Clutch wonder hub?

Although this Bicymple ISIS hub is great news (for hub availability, crank compatibility, and wheel strength due to the wider flange spacing), the 24 clutch engagement points is in my mind still clearly a limitation to freewheel unicycle riding, especially on larger wheels.

second and hopefully last prototype is going to land here in summer - and will be tested by our riders. Then, It’s a question of lead-time. Hopefully 2021 - not sure though.


Well, that didn’t take long.

If you want a hub, go knock on @muni_ben’s door. I hear he’s got spares.


Wow, that was fast. Did you get your order in? @mowcius

Any guesses how many of these hubs end up in the unicycling community? Probably less than 20 unless someone went for a much larger order.

Just sorting the details, but yes I’ll soon have some coming my way. I’d say I’ve also got spares, but I think they might be all pretty much accounted for now with interested UK riders.

At a guess 16-20 of the hubs in the hands of us unicyclists unless as you say some mystery person somehow ordered loads. Any more than 20 would also be a lot of “second hand” hubs that Bicymple just had lying around from wheel swaps.

Any more than that would also be getting into the territory of problematic if we suddenly realised that there was a flaw that will affect our usage. Hopefully everyone who has purchased is well aware that they’ve bought a hub at a budget price that may or may not have been a good deal.

Once we’ve had a few months of testing on them and have seen how they hold up, I’m sure Josh at Bicymple would be keen to receive any feedback for future revisions.
I imagine that the freewheel unicycling community in the future is probably going to be larger than the 1:1 direct drive bicycle community, if it isn’t already.


I’ve now paid my postage (lots) and my import duties (also lots), so they should be with me soon.

Expect to see disassembly pictures early next week, especially as one hub I bought broken for a discount (hopefully easily fixable) so I need to find out what’s up with it. It’s still not been ridden AFAIK so I’m expecting some assembly fault rather than anything serious, or a problem indicative of issues we may face in the future.