hey! new guy here, with the usual questions (on commuting, etc)


So, I bought a Torker CX 20" last Sunday (10 days ago) and after 5 days I was riding it (took me considerably longer than the 2 days it took me to learn to freeline skate) and now I’m getting better at turning and I’ve realized… I’m 6 feet tall! A 20" wheel won’t carry me at any sort of speed. (The CX, thankfully, is only about half an inch shorter than where my legs need to be with a seat fully up, so it hasn’t been hard to learn.)

So I’ve read the forums and I’ve seen that most people agree 29" is a good commuter, though I was thinking of a 36" since I’m already pretty tall. 29" is good for me if it’s going to be good for decently long trips (I have a 3 mile commute but would also like to go on 12 mile plus rides in the future).

So my question: what sort of 29" unicycle should I be looking into? Unicycle.com has “Nimbus 29-inch Touring Unicycle with ISIS hub” for $309, which isn’t out of my league… or I could save an extra couple weeks and splurge like mad on a Kris Holm for $700… which seems almost crazy.

Can I get a good weigh in on where I should purchase a 29" (or if I should go for a full 36" and where I’d find that) as soon as I’m pretty comfortable on my 20", and if so, what kind should I get, etc?

I’ve done a lot of reading (on splined hubs and etc etc) so I’m not uneducated, just inexperienced.


(Bonus question: after the 29", if I wanted to get one for muni… or if I bought the super expensive 29" would that be suitable for mountain at some point? Or should I just plan on collecting a ton of unicycles (which I am prepared for)…)

Hi welcome to Forums amiantos,
A 29er is more manauverable than a 36er, so if you are commuting on a busy footpath this may be better. What sort of Mountain Unicycling were you thinking of doing? If Cross Country than the KH 29er would be great.

Yes, it certainly seems like you’ve done your home work. Oh, and welcome to the forums amiantos!

I like the 29" because it’s versatile, people don’t yell at you when you ride on the pavement[1] and you can throw it in most cars without trouble. I’ve also taken it on buses/metro - I don’t think a 36" would be as appreciated.

A 36" is a very fun machine, but I would use it mainly for touring. I use my KH29 for communicating, distance riding, XC and Muni. (Sure there are people who do Muni on 36" too, but I think it would be too big for where I ride). With the dual 125 mm/150 mm cranks, I can quickly switch between “road mode” and “Muni mode”.

My friend has a Nimbus 29", and he does pretty much the same riding as me. The Nimbus is a very nice unicycle for its price (my first uni was a Nimbus 26" and I still use for Muni). The KH29 is without doubt better, but I personally don’t think it justifies the huge price difference[2].

OK, to summarize:
If you want a good all-round unicycle for a nice price, get the Nimbus 29". I would upgrade the cranks to KH dual hole (125/150 mm is my favorite) and maybe the saddle if you consider very long rides.[3]
If you want to spend the extra money to get a superb unicycle, get the KH29.

If you want two separate unicycles for touring/technical muni, maybe you should consider a 24"/26" and a 36". Howere, from your description I think it sounds like a 29" would be a better choice for you.

Whatever you choose, it’s likely that you’ll end up with a lot of unicycles. Hope it helped somewhat.

[1] You should check your local laws first. Here a unicycle is defined as a ‘toy vehicle’, but I don’t think most people would see a 36" that way.
[2] The main reason I got a KH29 was because of the KH/Schlumpf hub.
[3] Because Unicycle.com Sweden is awesome, I’ve never tried a Nimbus saddle - they swapped it to a KH Fusion Freeride directly, because they thought it was more comfortable. It didn’t help much during my ~70 km ride though - ouch the pain!
My hub wasn’t splined, so I later upgraded to KH hub + dual hole cranks.

I have questions! oh, so many questions.

  1. Your advice totally cleared it up for me: 29" seems to be good choice, definitely. Maybe one day I’ll splurge on a 36" for a major cross-country ride.

  2. UDC US is out of stock on KH 125/150. Is 125/150 good for my height (6’ tall with 3’ long legs)… should I maybe go with 136/165, or is crank length less a matter of leg length and how much torque you wanna apply to the wheel? I assume on a 29 inch I don’t need super long crank arms but, then again, I don’t know… I guess my CX that I’ve learned on has 175MM arms. Any advice? What’s the ‘rule of thumb’ on crank length?

  3. They don’t offer a freeride saddle in the customize options on UDC. Is it relatively brainless (i.e. bolt on, no fancy foot work necessary) to add one to my order and install it myself? What’s the nimbus saddle like? I don’t find my CX’s tiny little saddle to be too terribly uncomfortable (at 6ft at 130lbs I don’t have a lot of mass to bear down on it), so I’m just curious. Is the freeride saddle going to be $70 more comfortable than the default Nimbus? (I guess this is silly to ask, I can just buy the freeride later if I decide the nimbus saddle is no good…)

Or do like me and get a KH/Schlumpf hub. :wink:

I would say it’s the latter - you adjust the saddle height to make it comfortable for your legs. I like the 125/150 because 125 mm is a nice compromise between speed and control, while 150 mm gives you enough torque and control for the Muni rides I do. I don’t know any rules of thumb other than ‘shorter cranks = less control and more speed’ - it’s mostly personal preferences I think. 29" with short cranks is fun too if you want to go fast (I tried a friend’s with 90 mm, but I think I had too little control when I was spinning fast with the unicycle. It was nice for racing though).

By the way, 150 mm to 125 mm will feel like a huge difference in the beginning - at least I thought so. I remember how I said “wow, I won’t want to go faster than this” to my friend. Oh how wrong I was…

Sorry, I can’t answer this one. As said, I’ve never really tried a Nimbus saddle. Swapping saddles should be be a piece of cake (however, the newest KH Freeride saddle (2009) won’t be compatible with the Nimbus seatpost as far as I know - earlier models should be fine).

It should be pretty safe to wait with the saddle upgrade - I’ve heard that the Nimbus Gel saddle is pretty comfortable.

I would not go with the 165/137 cranks, myself, but to each his/her own. I have a KH29 and KH36, both with the 125/150 cranks, and I ride both road and muni on each of them. I don’t remember ever wanting to swap to the set of 165/137s that are on my kid’s 26er muni (he just keeps them in the 137 hole all the time). I’m 6’2" and 190 lbs, fwiw.

If you’re not in a huge rush to buy, you could troll the buy/sell forum here, and/or eBay, as KH29s show up on a fairly regular basis. I haven’t checked the specs recently, but the only thing that I didn’t like on the Nimbus 29er was that it had a single-walled rim, which would not hold up well for muni. Replacing a rim requires a new wheel build, which is a more of a pain than something like swapping cranks or seats.

If UDC offers an easy upgrade to the Freeride seat, it’d be worth an extra $25 over the Nimbus, but if there’s not an upgrade path, just stick with the Nimbus and see how you like it. It’s going to be 10000% (ballpark) better than the CX saddle you’re now using!

Oh that’s a very good point that I missed. Since my Nimbus 26" and my friends’ 29" have double-walled rims, I assumed that was the case with the “Nimbus 29-inch Touring Unicycle with ISIS hub” too. My friend has probably rebuilt his wheel then.

Thanks for pointing that out and saving me from feeling ashamed.


I just received my Nimbus 29" from UDC last week with 125/150 cranks.The website says they are out of stock but they just got them in. This fills the gap between the 24 and the 36
I’m very happy with my choice, instead of the KH I got the touring handle and the upgraded cranks and still have money left.
Not planning on doing much Muni. So this works for me.
Good luck

What’s the ‘rule of thumb’ on crank length?
Longer: good for climbing steep hills, technical terrain, controlled decents (esp short ones) w/o a brake, and TALL people tend to like them (well over '6). The bad - slower speeds, more wobble on steep skinny decents, and some feel they use more energy for the same distance.

Shorter: faster, w/ a brake some feel they have more control on skinny decents, legs move less per revolution making you less tired (provided you can handle the taller gear).

I’m 5’10" and I much prefer my 170’s over the stock 150’s on my 24" Muni.

The only diff w/ the '08/'09 saddles is you use a bolt instead of a nut. The same posts work.

I had a nimbus gel seat that would be comfortable for about 10 minutes. I bought an 08 kh fusion freeride seat and can ride for a couple of hours before I have to get off to rest my crotch. Ask them to swap it out for a small price difference. I have the 137/167 cranks For my 29, but am replacing them with the 125/150s. I don’t like the 167 size (though I do look forward to trying them on my 24 muni). At the very least get the kh seat.

Browsing the forums here left me with the feeling that the Nimbus Gel is a really comfortable seat and I might run into probs with the KH Freeride. I don’t mind the narrow CX seat, so I figure I’ll just stick with the Nimbus for a while and see how it goes…

Touring handle? That’s not in the options on the site. Or do you mean you got the KH Freeride saddle with the touring handle they offer? (Or you’re talking about an option on a site other than UDC US?)

Thanks for the heads up on the 125/150 cranks, I’ll be sure to go for those when I place my order.

I assumed this was in reference to me saying I could get a 36" later on… I have no idea what this means! (I assume you’re saying instead of getting a 36" I can get a different hub and that’ll somehow replicate the feeling/speed of a 36"?) Oh my god! That’s a $2,000 hub! Out of my league for now…

Thanks for all your help on crank length! You’ve all been really awesome.

Would you want to sell the nimbus? :wink:

The touring handle is under the unicycle hardware heading.You could either get in black or red.They cost 70.00 from UDC.US . I also ordered the Animal grips in black.

I gave it to my daughter’s boyfriend. He has a schwinn with a very old seat. He was pretty happy to get the nimbus. He is a young, poor student right now. I just wish he had time to ride more. Don’t you have a kh seat? I think the kh seat is superior to the nimbus (IMHO).