Muni-vs-Uni

Hi, my Name is Andy. I am an avid MTB’r and MotoX rider who is really excited to start riding a unicycle. I only state my other sports in a HOPE that those skills will allow me to someday ride OK on a uni. My question is:
I would like to ride on pavement and then progress to dirt, probably just mellow MTB trails (but also continue to ride pavement also).
Should I buy and learn on a Muni (Torker DX) or should I learn on a Torker LX and then buy a muni? I dont see myself hucking big stuff, just playen in the dirt and street. Will a DX be good on the street also and be a good learner?
Thanks so much for any help!
Andy

Hi Andy,

Welcome to the forum. Your MTB strength is sure to help you, the ability to pick a line will also help. It doesn’t feel the same on a unicycle so it is a new skill set. MotoX …well, learn to ride a unicycle and then tell US YOUR thoughts on what translates.

As far as what to buy…get the best one you can afford! Have you looked at Nimbus? Looked around at unicycle.com ?

The simple and more straight up answer is that the street uni will likely be lighter, have a thinner tire and shorter cranks. The muni will be tougher, heavier, longer cranks - slower but able to stomp over more stuff.

Try starting with a 20" street Torker. It is a good learning size and an entry level price. By the time you are ready to explore off-road you may also be ready to go to a bigger wheel and you can shop for a nicer 24" muni that probably wouldn’t be as learner friendly.

Just one guy’s thoughts…

Unicycling isn’t hard. It takes a bid of practice at first but then it’s all good. I would consider any unicycle with a 24", 26" or 29" wheel for the style you described. 29" light XC, 24" Tech DH, 26" in between leaning to tech. I’d get a nimbus model from unicycle.com for any of these wheel sizes.

Buy once, buy right -and don’t buy again… you know exactly what you’re gonna do with it! buy the Muni, learn on it and go off road! If your interest suddenly varies, then buy more… (like a 36er later). Get that torker DX, and a 24" is cool to learn on. It will also stand up to heavy off road use.

Another brand to consider is a Nimbus from Unicycle dot com, a Muni with Isis style cranks will give you some choices on what you use for cranks in the future! There are cranks that have dual holes (different pedal positions) like Kris Holm moments, so you can pedal fast on the street, or get leverage for off road! You will also have a variety of manufacturers to choose from. check out the other threads and see how often folks discuss cranks. the Torker only comes with one type of crank you can use.

Hi Andy

Welcome to the forums!

A DX proberly wouldn’t be so good for learning on, because of the wieght of it and the nobbley tyre. By riding on the street do you mean like on the road or foot path? Or street unicycling:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oX3aTIXsU3g
? If you want to ride on the footpath and mellow off road then perhaps a 26’’ or 29’’ would be a good wheel size, but for learning to unicycle you would proberly want a 20’’ or 24’’. Heres somthing that might help you decide what size you want: http://www.unicycle.uk.com/FAQ.asp?iCategory=53

Still figuring out how to reply here!
Wow, what an awesome community here. Thanks for the info. How about a Muni with a slick for street? (do you guys call them slicks?). A DX with a slick, would that be nice to learn on and then progress to knobby/dirt?
Thanks guys.

The new DX is supposedly much lighter than the old one, and it has ISIS CrMo cranks. You can’t go wrong with a Nimbus, but the Torker shouldn’t be too bad. If you plan on doing mixed terrain I would recommend a Felt Berm Master 24x3 tire for learning on a MUni. When you go off road you will appreciate having a wider tire that you can run at low pressures. If you think that one day you might want a brake that would be another reason to get a Nimbus; the Torker doesn’t have brake mounts.

The Berm Master is great on pavement, and a good performer off road. It’s nice to have a tire that you don’t need to change when you hear the call of the trails.

The only real downside of learning to ride on a dedicated MUni is the tire. On pavement, most good dirt tires don’t ride well. So if you do go with a MUni to learn on, I recommend the following:

  • High pressure in the tire if you’re going to ride on pavement
  • Or ride on smooth dirt or grass
  • Or buy a second (cheap, non-knobby) tire for pavement

That is a reasonable plan.

My cousin was the top MotoX youth rider in the country in the late 80’s. He told me that a friend of his that he rode with said that unicycling was absolutely the best cross-training for motoX ever. I am not sure if the reverse is true also, but unicycling will greatly improve your coordination and reactions on a mtb or motorcycle.

I would buy a Nimbus 24" MUni and put a slick tire on it to learn, mainly because these things are indestructible. For learning, the weight doesn’t really matter, and with this, you will not need to dish out another $300+ on a better 24" unless you need a little less weight.

Please keep us updated with your progress.

I agree with getting the 24" Nimbus and buy 2 tires for it. Learn on the slick, switch to dirt when you feel ready. You’ll definitely be saving money in the long run. My buddy has the Torker DX and last time I rode it I thought it was gonna fall apart with me on it.

+1 on the Nimbus 24" idea. Truth told most people tire of their Torkers - they are ok but mid- rangy. Once you can ride a mile you will hate the seat.

I imagine moto-x takes a lot of core strength that will serve well for muni riding.

While I’ve only been doing this since November… I HAVE recently learned to ride a uni and I will respectively disagree with those trying to steer you away from a Muni because of the tire. I first bought a 24" Torker CX and quickly moved onto a Surly conundrum 24" with an 3.0 DH tire.

I could barely ride 100 feet when I made the switch and LOVED the Muni with the 3.0 tire. I found it easier to ride then the 24" torker with a “street” tire…

I understand why some wouldn’t recommend learning on a knobby tire but if Muni is what you want to do… than get a Muni, learn how to ride, and get on the trails as soon as possible.

I would not get a Torker LX, it’s cheap and you get what you pay for. If you want something cheap, get a used CX and throw it away when you are done wig it. The LX I am learning to ride on already has a bent axle and rim, and I can’t even freemount yet. It’s a bit weird to ride when the cranks are not straight. Search the forums for threads about bent axles on the Torkers. I emailed Seattlebikesupply about it, I think they have quality issues with the LXs.

Torker DX seems to be a different animal though. A girl in my juggling class rides one and it looks much more solid.

Thanks everyone for the awesome advise!