How do cheaper unis differ from more expensive ones in terms of performance?

I have a Club 24" and I am a relative beginner. I find that to keep to the right I have to make much greater effort with my body and hands than what I have to make to turn to the left. Could this be a cheaper uni’s bias towards the left (as I saw someone remark in another thread)? But I am a lefty. Could that be the reason why I find it more difficult to turn to the right and can turn to the left much more naturally?

I’m a righty and have been able to turn left more naturally on anything. Walking, rollerblading, even driving. And unicycling.

I don’t know why. I don’t think it’s the unicycle, I think we all just have some kind of bias to one side of our body, and even a small amount translates to a lot of difficulty reversing that when we go to turn in the opposite direction.

I’m a righty, and it’s harder for me to turn left. Unless something is noticeably wrong with the unicycle, like the wheel not being true, then you’re ok. : ) I think it has something to do with your dominant leg putting more power into the turns, making them easier, but that’s just me.

it’s not unusual to find one side easier than another for turning and many other skills on the unicycle. Even though better quality uni’s are nicer to ride, what you’re describing is not related to riding a Club 24" - just practice your weaker side and ride more, it will improve.

Oh and make sure your seat is on straight :slight_smile:

As the others have said, it will not be the unicycle, it will come with practice.

One thing I found that helps is having enough air in the tyre, the unicycle will be more responsive to your input.

More expensive unicycles normally have better wheels, hubs and cranks, this makes them feel much nicer to ride.

When I am teaching people to ride at our unicycle club, I tell them to try and pedal in smooth circles, this makes the unicycle less likely to turn side to side as you ride.

There really is no substitute to practice, over time just riding along starts to become more natural and comfortable.

I can always turn left easier than I turn right.

Ride a lot of figure eights. That will increase your comfort with turns and eventually help even out your riding.

I doubt it has anything to do with the unicycle.


I can do spins on a cheap $80 unicycle. The uni is heavier, the seat is uncomfortable, and I can feel the frame flexing, but it works:p

+1 on more air when learning. Besides figures eights complete circles are also good practice. I’m lucky I have a school near me that has two circles near each other with with three different size rings to help me practice riding in complete circles of different sizes.

But a string and some ‘sidewalk’ chalk and you can draw your own circles

cheap unis can break, or hang on being heavy

The KH hangs on looking good, then keeps hanging on being light and looking good, and not breaking. Lighter and at least as tough as other gear, KH is popular.

I am not an experienced (2ish year) rider. The extra build quality, and minor weight reduction of my KH’s hasn’t helped me much, but if you spray it off, they sure look good. Better metals and craftsmanship is the hallmark of KH.

I think fancy Ti stuff helps a bit, but more for better riders, super light gear is almost mandatory if you are setting a record at something. I would like to have a Ti framed maxed out uni just to look at it.:slight_smile:

For a new rider like me, my KH 19 and 24 just sorta shine. I would be lying if I said they had made me a better rider than brand x, yet having a cool shiny KH can just bring a smile to my face. It’s kinda stupid, like having a Harley, or a race bike. Except it’s a shiny unicycle.:slight_smile:

I doubt that the unicycle is a major part of the problem, but you should have no doubt that good quality unicycles are easier and nicer to ride than cheap ones. It’s everything from the stiffness of the frame, the lightness of the wheel, the grip of the pedals and the profile of the tyre. My KH24 was a revelation to me after several years riding cheaper unis.

The biggest changes you can make in order of importance and approximate order of price:

Get the air pressure right in your tyre.

Get a good tyre.

Get good grippy pedals.

What is the right air pressure? Soft is good for soaking up bumps, but makes the uni sluggish, unresponsive and “quirmy”. Hard is easier for steering but can make the uni twitchy and skittish.

What is the right tyre? Something with a fairly round cross section (look at the back tyre of a motorcycle and compare it to a car tyre).

Good grippy pedals - there is a balance here between safety and grip, as anyone who has walked for an hour to the first aid post then driven for an hour to the hospital then needed seven stiches in the back of his right calf will tell you.:o However, good light grippy pedals are worth “an extra gear” on hills.

Until you start doing more extreme type of riding like muni, trials, & freestyle, a cheap uni is just fine. The seat might not be as comfortable, but learning to ride is less stressful on the uni than jumping off picnic tables :wink: If you decide to start riding those styles, a higher-end uni will be better for you, especially when you’re working on your technique… Your weight might have somethign to do with it too… There are plenty of people who are light enough/good enough to ride an old Nimbus II tapered muni for years without an issue over drops etc… I snapped my axle dropping 6". My 190lbs prolly didn’t help either :wink: Since then, my technique has improved, I’ve upgraded to KH parts, and they’ve held up no problem (despite my weight going up too ;))