Making Unicycling Safer

I am in an engineering class where I go to school. I was given a project where I have to design something for the yearly project. I want to help out my fellow single-wheelers. My original idea was a baseball cap or hat that could serve the same purpose of a helmet; it would be just as safe, but not be as awkward or big.
I was also thinking about something for pedal-bites, but padding for that already exists. I would appreciate if you guys could tell me what bothers you when you unicycle, or when you fall? What do you think would help make it better?
Thanks for the help, guys!

More comfortable seat…

Seat-belts. :smiley:

For offroad riding, something that keeps my feet stuck to the pedals when I’m riding, but instantly releases the feet when I’m falling - magic! but if you solve this you can make good $$ out of it :). Like electromagnetic clipless pedals that release the feet when my hand is not holding the saddle.

Baseball caps with built in protection are already available. I decided against using one after trying it on in the shop. They are designed as very limited protection for workment working in tight spaces where there may be low beams, but no danger of falling items.

Less gravity.

How about spring loaded studs in pedals. Strong enough springs to keep the studs out and gripping the shoe but not rock solid as they scrape down your shin.

Some commonsense for dog walks of unruly dogs to get them to keep their dog on a lead

In all seriousness Unicycling is one of the safer riding hobbies/sports due the relative low speed and lack of cycle mass to get tangled in, the complexity of riding one is a challenge that we want and what makes it such a rewarding hobby/sport so don’t think you will find anything genuinely worthwhile to design. Also anything that is viable for Unicycling will be pretty generic to bicycling etc so will already be available.

How about a multi-geared planetary hub with under seat shifter, nothing to do with safety mind but something people want, oh with an internal disc or hub brake :smiley:

Sorry, I will be more flippant in future.

Reliable quick release bearing clamps for quicker wheel changes and puncture repairs.

A purpose made unicycle mudguard - because mountainbike mudguards don’t really do the job on a uni.

A single forkleg design, as used on some bicycles and rear ends of motorbikes.

Telescopic cranks for quick and easy adjustment during a long ride.

A small luggage trailer that doesn’t interfere with the instability or the steering of the unicycle.

Ha, yes. You can find this on the Moon. Anthony Gatto seems to be able to juggle 19 clubs there. I haven’t heard of unispins there yet, would be interesting. And I’m not sure about Niburu.

I know this sortof takes off the idea from the POC pads or the EVO 661 pads, but a thin membrane that is soft & pliable until hit. Think that Gak type stuff you make with corn starch, not quite a liquid and not quite a solid. Rock hard if you hit it or run over it fast, pliable and easily moveable if you move slowly. If you could make guards out of that stuff, they could be light and thin, yet protect better than most foam & plastic pads.
Problem to overcome is getting the liquid to stay where you want it(you’d need compartments of some sort to localize the mixture) and lifespan of the liquid so it doesn’t separate or crack or leak.
Didn’t say it was easy, but I’m not the engineer in the class;) And I want to get a free pair if you get them to work!

My son’s 6th grade class dropped eggs in various containers off a 50ft tower last summer. One of the winning designs was one that used the Gak concept to surround the egg inside the container. She used a large bubble wrap sheet and filled each bubble with Gak, sealed the syringe holes with tape, and taped the sheet around the egg. Pretty genius!

I remember seeing SWAT gear like that, where you could just drop on your knees on concrete, while under normal circumstances the protection is flexible.
I never saw it in real, only in the commercial video presentation.

Not quite but nearly…

I like Mikefule’s suggestion of quick-release bearing clamps. This should be do-able within the parameters of your engineering class. (Even if it doesn’t eventually become a retail product.) This would be useful.

I also like Diamond’s retractable-pin pedal idea. What might be easier to implement is a pedal with fixed pins, but a spring-loaded plate that retracts under foot pressure, allowing the pins to protrude, but springs back when the foot pressure is taken off, so the pins are hidden (and won’t scrape or puncture your leg).

Some things already exist:
Helmet caps:
The pads that are quite soft, but stiffen when hit:

Excellent idea, speaking as someone who needed seven stitches in a calf wound from a pedal bite a few years back.

and in Julien Money’s proximity… I think he must have a personal anti gravity machine… I want!

I’m thinking LanceB’s spring loaded plate is a winner.

I like both ideas as well. The spring loaded pedal idea is also very useful for Schlumpf owners as quite often the best foot position for riding isn’t the best for shifting so you have to adjust your feet to shift (at least I do) which can be difficult with normal pinned pedals. But if you could unweight your foot from a spring loaded pedal it would be much easier to adjust your feet to shift and adjust back to riding position. Also, one other by-product of a spring loaded pedal platform would be (possibly) to provide a bit of shock absorption on drops. Some of your impact energy could be dampened by the spring loaded pedals. Genius! I’d buy a pair of these pedals!