Geared 29'er progress

Hi all -

As you might know, I’ve been riding a manufactured overseas prototype Harper Hub/Howard frame 29’er. A second prototype frame showed up last week so naturally I replaced the first prototype frame with the new one.

The first prototype was just bare aluminum but the second one came finished in black. The new one looks so purdy I thought you-all might like to have a look at it! This frame is still far from where it needs to be though, so it’s not ready to go to market just yet.

Steve Howard

Hmmm nice!

By the way, what tyre is that?


Do you have any ideas for if/how it would be possible to mount a brake on the overseas frame? A two bolt trials style Magura mount would be cool. I just don’t know if/how it could be done on that frame.

I’ve played a little bit with Greg’s Blue Shift. In 43" mode a brake becomes very desirable for some downhills. I want a brake when I get a shifty.

Ken - The tire is a Schwalbe Big Apple.

John - It just so happens that I scored a set of Maguras’ last week and they’re destined for the geared 29’er. I think I know how to mount them and I’ll post pictures when it’s done. If any unicycle needs brakes it’s this one.

Harper says that brakes are for wimps - even in 43.5" mode!

Steve Howard

Is anyone else reminded of the DM vortex? Also, not to be critical, but that frame seems to have almost no tire clearance. What do you do when your in your highest gear, and the rim begins losing it’s true? Welcome to reconstructive-facial-surgury-ville. Pop.-whoever rides with that little tire clearance. Brakes also seem to be a must on that monster.

There is enough tire clearance for the Big Apple and lots of tire clearance for the NanoRaptor. I don’t think a wheel would gradually lose its true and jam up on the frame. I think you would hear it complaining when it started to gradually become untrue, like an insincere lover. Blue Shift broke a spoke on the 10k race in Minneapolis with the Big Apple tire mounted with similar frame clearance. That was a rapid change in wheel trueness and the tire never touched the frame. In fact, the wheel remained relatively true.

Brakes, just like unfractured faces, are for wimps.

Gerblefranklin - Yes the tire is very close to the crown. The frame was designed and committed to production before I knew there was a tire bigger than a 29 x 2.1. This link talks about when I got my first Big Apple -

And here’s some gallery photos showing the Big Apple on Blue Shift -

Fortunately, there’s not much tread on the Big Apple so it’s not likely that a stick or rock will get picked up and jammed. A 29 x 2.1 tire like a Notos or Nanoraptor has plenty of clearance. The Big Apple is one big tire!

Steve Howard