Get a coker! If you are going to go big, go BIG! You are going to regret not going 36" when you see how nice a larger wheel is. I was in the same situation as you, originally I was going to go 29er but I knew I’d be wishing I had a coker. I got a nice deal on a used one (non-airfoil but I have money left over for when a decent rim comes around) coming in the mail in a few days.
www.cokercycles.com says they are releasinga new and improved coker for the summer but who knows how long we will have to wait. As for what is available right now, yeah the nimbus is definitely the way to go.
That brings it pretty much into line with the UK Nimbus 29er XC. I bought a road-oriented Nimbus 29" about 4 months after starting unicycling and about 7 months before getting a fullblown 36er…
My Nimbus came with a Big Apple, which you might want to consider for road riding. That said, I’ve swapped to a Kenda Klaw for offroad riding, and I’ve found it handles well on the tarmac too (it buzzes, but so did the BA). With 125s it goes at a fair clip, with 150s it’s quite flingable and can still be spun fast. I found it’s also an excellent machine for threading between pedestrians, stop/start riding, etc where the 36er can be a little hairy.
I’m glad to have the 29er to ride as an alternative to the 36". Not as fast, but still quite nippy in its own right. If you’re riding long distances, though, consider your choice of seat carefully - there are a number of good seats out there. And think about getting a rail adaptor / rail seatpost, they can really help for comfort over distance. UDC may well be willing to swap these components if you ask, so it’ll save you money to consider this before you buy.
yeah…about how far would you be riding? you mention commuting…what kind of distance? around campus, my 29er is perfect…cause there are people to dodge, sharp corners to take, stair sets to carry the uni up/down.
but for any sort of road riding i’d love to have a coker, but when i have ridden one, it feels big enough that i’d be wary of riding around campus with it.
This thought kinda swayed my decision a little bit. I know for a fact that if I go with the 29er, I’ll want the coker a week later. I’ve thought of all the pros and cons. The only cons I can think of for the 36" is the price (obviously) and the terrain where I’ll be doing most of my riding. Over the summer I’ll be home…where I’ll want to ride long distances…but during the school year I’ll be up here in Oswego, NY, where it’s all hilly and I doubt I’ll make trips longer than 15 miles max. Also, there are a lot of people to manuever around on campus. So maybe the 29" would be better for me (right now). Regardless, I am going to buy a Coker in the future.
Firstly, if you only have a 20" at the moment, then moving strait on to a 36" is going to be like learning to ride all over again but slower.
If you're looking at a max of 15 miles over hilly ground then there won't be much of a noticable speed difference between them both.
Saving the cash by getting the 29" will allow you to change things like the seat, cranks and tyre to find the best setup for you.
If you have to navigate around people or other stuff on campus, then the smaller wheel is by far the best choice.
After a year or so with the 29" you will probably have the money to get the 36" that you want, and by then you'll have a better idea of what you'll be wanting in a 36er too.
I served my unicycling apprentiship riding a 29er through central London up to 80 miles a week, and have recently bought a Nimbus 36" uni. In all honesty, and despite the fact that I love the N36 to bits, I think the 29 is the better commuting uni.
Hope it helped some… My 29er currently has 150mm cranks on and is good for nipping between pedestrians. It took me quite a long time to get the hang of idling it etc, but I did start riding it quite early on and didn’t try very hard It’s not that fast in this configuration, but I can still get a respectable speed up… Another advantage is that it’s easier to take indoors - the 36er is BIG - and that if you do have do dismount it’s easier to get back up on. Particularly to start with, mounting any big wheel is a bit more time and space consuming than jumping back onto your 20"…
Some people can go straight to a 36er and feel comfortable - it’s a personal thing. I’m not sure if I could have done and I wasn’t sure I was ready to slash out 36er money just yet. After a few months riding the 29er I realised that I was now ready to pay serious money for a serious uni But in any case I’ve been glad to have the 29er as a backup for all sorts of reasons: fits in cars better, good in slippery offroad (knobbly tyre), light and easy to handle. I was fortunate enough to have cash I could justify spending on them, but I have not regretted starting with the 29er.
If worst comes to worst, you could sell the 29" to a uni buddy after a year or so and move up to a bigger wheel
So I thought I’d just let everyone know…that despite all of my previous intentions and everyones good advice, I went ahead and bought the used Radial 36" for sale in the trading post section :D. I bought it for $190, which I think is a VERY reasonable price considering its “perfect condition.” Although a 29" would definitely be more suitable for me on campus, I saved money in buying the 36" and I’ll have all summer to ride it. By the end of the summer, I’ll have enough money to decide whether I want to buy the 29" for school next year or not. Plus, like someone said earlier in this thread, cokers have a much higher resale value if I decide I don’t need it (especially if I upgrade it a little bit).
But anyway, it’s coming in the mail Wednesday! I cannot wait. The weather is finally nice here, I can’t wait to ride it.
The Radial 36er is a very nice machine. I bought one myself, albeit with an Airfoil rim (have since added a T7 handle). The big wheel likes to be treated with respect - a smooth pilot will get the nicest ride. But it is very fast, very smooth and very fun. It really makes my 29er feel skittish in comparison. I haven’t tried the Coker tyre, but the TA tyre is very nice.
Although a 29" would definitely be more suitable for me on campus, I saved money in buying the 36" and I’ll have all summer to ride it. By the end of the summer, I’ll have enough money to decide whether I want to buy the 29" for school next year or not. Plus, like someone said earlier in this thread, cokers have a much higher resale value if I decide I don’t need it (especially if I upgrade it a little bit).
You may well find you can use the 36er around school; if there are roads or cycle paths you could ride on those. You might have to walk some sections, but OTOH you’ll probably be going faster the rest of the time