I’ve only ever unicycled on a 20" street uni, but I’d really like to get into doing some muni. I’d like to do some XC with some technical stuff, but nothing too extreme. For this reason I’ve decided to go with the KH26, which also seems suitable based on my height & weight (5’8"/116 lbs). I’d also like to get a brake and unicycle.kr suggested this disc brake but I also noticed they have this hydraulic brake. Not sure which one of these is better, but I think I’ll go with the disc brake unless someone thinks this is a bad idea?
I do have a couple of questions though, maybe some of which are better suited for unicycle.kr but I’ve listed them anyway:
The tire on their website is listed as a “26x2.6” Maxxis Ardent with schrader valve.” and if I’m not mistaken, I thought the KH26 comes with a 3" tire. As I’ve never ridden on such a wide tire before, I’m not sure if 3" or 2.6" makes much of a difference and if I should look into this further?
The website also mentions the cranks as “Kris Holm ‘Moment’ ISIS Cranks - 150mm” are these the dual hole ones or are the Moments the single hole ones? Would 150mm be a good crank length to start with?
I’ve never mounted a disc brake before, and I’m eager to learn! What tools would I need to do this, and are there any additional parts I should be ordering with the disc brake? (e.g. this thing)
Finally, I’ve decided on the KH26 but someone also mentioned the Nimbus Oracle 26" to me today, I have a feeling if I look into this I’ll spend another week or two trying to decide on which uni to get but are there any major advantages for the Nimbus Oracle?
The kh26 never came with a 3.0 tire, the Oracle comes with a 3.0 tire.
As far as the cranks, if they were dual hole it would say dual hole and the length would say 125/150.
For mounting a disc brake I think all you need is a set of hex wrenches and some patience. It takes a bit of fiddling to get things lined up correctly, but most people can do it without problems.
The magura hs33 brake you have linked to will just bolt on to the KH uni, it’s easy to install. You need to also have the piece that mounts under the seat for the brake handle to bolt onto.
For a disk brake setup they work two ways. One uses a disc mounted to the hub, for this you need a disc hub (the oracle comes with this, the kh does NOT), then there is another piece that mounts the caliper to the frame. The other method mounts the disc to the crank (uses kh spirit disc compatible cranks) and the caliper mounts to the frame. If you went this route, you would have to upgrade to the compatible cranks.
From a price standpoint the Oracle wins. Plus it comes with everything you want. The KH is a nice machine, but you will need to add the brake pieces to get what you want and it will cost quite a bit more. Some people say the outboard disc setup is better (this is the KH way).
+1 on Anton’s comments. If this is your first muni, and you’re not planning on anything extreme, just go with the Oracle. Comes with the disc brake installed, everything ready to go. Also comes with the 3" Duro Leopard tire, if I’m not mistaken. (Some minor assembly required, but not much.) My friend bought an Oracle 26" a few months ago, and it’s great. I don’t think you will be disappointed.
A Maxxis Ardent is designed for XC with some technical stuff. It’s much lighter than the 3" Duro, and the weight really makes a difference in how the uni rides. I have used both tires before. The uni feels more agile with the Ardent.
Also I use the brake mostly for control on steep hills. if you are not riding a lot of steep terrain, you might not need a brake at all.
Don’t get the Oregon based on looks. It’s a different beast and probably not what you want. It’s not as versatile as the KH 26 or Oracle.
The Oracle is a great machine. I’d switch out the tire for something lighter for a 26, and I’d want dual hole cranks. It’s probably a wash between the KH26 and Oracle 26. If you want disc I like the inboard. It offers more protection and you can use any crank, but the downside is apparently it’s a weaker wheel build–though mortals would probably never notice.
Actually, for “some XC with some technical stuff, but nothing too extreme,” 29" might even be a better choice. We’ve been hearing that lately from folks who’ve got them. It’s a little more to handle but rolls over things more easily. And tire choices for 29ers are excellent at this point. If you go with the 26" note that the 3" wide Duro is an extreme downhill tire, really great for those 8-foot drops but a heavy beast for most other things. Consider swapping an Ardent or Hookworm for it or something more nimble like that for the kind of riding you’re talking about.
And double that for Oregons. Like Kahunacohen says, very strong and experienced riders who do extreme muni like them a lot but…
Oracles do seem to be the way to go right now. Having all the brake parts included is a bigger deal than it might seem to be at first.
If i can suggest find someone who is willing to share a day riding with you who has an 26er and or 29er and try them both out? Light Muni if possible.
If i were in your position your in now and had the knowledge i didnt, even without the experience i would highly consider the following.
If only for Muni eventually harder hillier terrain. 26 Kris Holm, Ardent, 125/150. Wonderful!
If Muni and commute slight distant. KH29 or Nimbus Drak? I like the Black mean look! Maybe oregon but i dunno there sorry…
If you wish to acquire or fit a brake you can do this later when you starting heading down big long hills and lengthy riding periods where you wish to save some energy which you will be thankful for having a brake fitted. Possibly you wont use it much yet… But ok they look cool!
If you dont have Kris’s book
‘The essential guide to mountain and trials unicycling’ …
You will be far better off reading his back to back, realising what you feel you will be riding most and from then you can gauge what Uni will best fit your riding straight up. Tyre size, widths, cranks lengths ect ect.
UDC usually i believe are happy to swap KH saddles around and crank lengths when you buy a New Uni from them.
A one Uni happy to do all i would suggest for me would be a
KH29 ( light and strong )
137/110 spirits (disc ready!)
Street Saddle, (i prefer a medium ride)
And disc Hydro brake setup, xt or avid? 160mm rotor
or a cable caliper disc brake with 185mm but they cost more to source in AUS…
something like this will take a few weeks to get comfortable riding on but once you do, it will be fast enough, agile enough and so much FUN. If my Kh26 had no geared hub i would be riding one of these most defiantly.
Everyone will have similar or different ideas but you are one the right track. With unis i dont think you can look too far ahead so go with what you feel safe with to get practising then you will find you cant keep off the thing!!!
Practise! Things get easier what seems hard in the beginning…
I have seen Jamey (uni pro show) scale some good hills on and off-road cross creeks and muni rocky steep hills both up and down and unlike me he does it making it look pretty simple and quick obsticals. I am 175cm ish, he 200+?cm both riding 26 geared with 137 holes. You can choose 150s sure but I would not be sticking with them once I’m used to the uni. Way I have pictured things riding if 137s ( regardless to wheel size) won’t get me up a hill more likely than not longer cranks won’t get me there either.
29ers are fairly light specially compared to a geared uni.
I would say weight and control are very similar between the kh26 and 29in. 137s are considerable smoother and bit faster than 150mm. I found 150mm painfully slow and lumpy after using 137s.
Find what suits the terrain and you skill set for where you are at. It’s all open to change.
Again for an all rounder 29er with either 150 or 137 you may find your happier with for longer.
Going 125mm cranks for muni tips my scales it’s too hard and my 63kg won’t crank anywhere near hard enough for trails I prefer. Either that or I’m lazy for hard work and just like enjoying muni for the finer moments.
After a days few hours muni it’s nice to feel you can do another couple loops if you wish without wondering how your going to manage to walk from the car to the house when your home…
I found my 36er going uphills wasn’t so much a struggle due to crank length short and wheel size big more the plain weight I’m trying to turn and carry.
Try a test. Big steep hill. One uni wheel size. 2 crank lengths. Can someone say they get dramatically further uphill with longer cranks?
For a new muni rider you could start them out on longer cranks. I would have preferred shorter cranks to grow into and slowly increase terrain difficulty. I’m backwards I apologise. Probably not the best advise for most but might help open the mind to the many options and much potential we have inside.
Can I assume 29er was an agreed happy non geared muni size for our rider here?
Really they aren’t terrible much bigger outside diameter than a 26"… But notibly faster and smoother ride
Practise! Things get easier what seems hard in the beginning…
Suggesting 137’s on someones first 26" Muni probably isn’t the soundest advice. You OBVIOUSLY like short cranks, we get it, let the OP decide for himself, 150’s are pretty much the standard for that size uni. For someone who has only ridden a 20, going that shorter will only make for a bad muni experience.
Better buy? Possibly… But I’m not sure there…
For weight, strength, rim quality, alloy frame and re sale value why not support Kris and go KH.
Is it Not worth the little extra price for a premium uni? Took me years to learn to save and wait to afford the better options than settle for less and shortly after want to upgrade anyway… If that makes sense
Why a better buy? Mostly because you already get a brake. I’m also a fan of round crowns (even though I don’t currently own one. Imagine that ). Also, when it comes to a Moment hub vs. a Nimbus hub, I’d take the Nimbus.
Why the external setup? All of my wheel building experience comes from regular non-dished wheels. From a maintenance stand point, I prefer a non-dished wheel since I know what to tension everything and I’m not worrying about correct dish and stuff like that. I build my own wheels now, and like to keep with what I know.
When it comes to the 36er I’m building, I’d be a bit nervous riding a dished wheel. I’m just not sure about having a wheel that big dished. I know plenty of people are riding them, but it’s not for me.
Tas, what about KH’s makes them any more premium than a Nimbus Oracle? Weight difference once you added the brake that a KH is lacking, would be negligible. Stength? I think you’re probably sixes. Rim quality? The D2 is plenty strong. Both have alloy frames, the Nimbus is a round crown (+1 for me). As far as resale goes, I’d probably give that one to the KH.
I can afford KH’s. If I wanted to order one right now I could. But the box I have coming in the mail has mostly Nimbus parts in it.
No offense meant to KH. I use plenty of his other products and think they’re great.
Thanks for all your input! I’ve decided to order the Oracle 26 once I hit payday. Unicycle.kr doesn’t have any Ardent or Hookworms in stock so I’ll go with the 3" duro it comes with and order another wheel elsewhere. That way I have the option to use the Duro if I decide to venture into some technical downhill later.
The only decision left to make is picking my cranks. The Oracle comes with 165 but Unicycle.kr will swap them out for me at my request. I’m not sure whether to get the KH 137/165 or 125/150. Since I’m based in Hong Kong and we have a fair bit of climbing, I’m inclined to go for the 137/165. What do you guys think?
165 on a 26" seems overkill, unless the hills you’re talking about are proper mountains.
I’d go for 150/125, it’s a more interesting combo - 150 climbs very well, and 125 on more flat parts is really great.
Good choice you will like it I’m sure,
I would say 125/ 150s are a good crank option 150 will be plenty for any hills specially on a 26in
I guess there are kh fans and nimbus fans. I see no benefits for me having chosen I oracle, I would be needing to buy dual hole cranks for full versatility and I would far prefer a different brake setup.
Never had an issue with the squareness of a kh frame. And I do find now I ride with my knees slightly in and saddle up far as I can controllably.
Tired width can mean a lot starting out and the weight tackling hills.
Maybe they are much of a muchness but Kh delivers more for me customising than nimbus will in dollar value.
Either way I think the 26 will serve very well on the climbs with 150s and the heavier tyre you will be running.
Sooo I’ve been up looking through old threads on tires and now I’ve come to the conclusion that there aren’t any decent hybrid tires. please tell me I’m wrong about that?!
Here are my conclusions:
Duro wildlife leopard 26" x 3.0" = Only good for Muni / can’t ride on pavement at all (destroys the tire)
26x2.6” Maxxis Ardent = Good for less technical Muni / not good on pavement
Hookworm 26x2.5" = Good for pavement / not very good for Muni
I’d like to ride on both pavement and XC trails with the occasional rough terrain. It will likely be 30% pavement and 70% XC muni, which of the three tires above would be best for this and are there any alternatives? The XC trails here are usually littered with branches and leaves
I swear I torture myself by reading too much into things!