As Juni said, the frame is mainly shaped to get out of the way of your legs, while still accepting a 5"+ wide tire.
The 4" tire means it’s closer to a 29er diameter than a 26, and it’s a really great size for cross country riding. For the road or pavement, you may want a smoother tire. The Nate definitely rumbles on the road.
If you’re going to be in traffic, a 36er is all I feel comfy with because it gets me the speed to keep up with traffic, but I have seen people ride 29ers on the road too.
Even small riders can handle a very large wheel, it’s just a different feel, and typically a very large wheel like a 36 takes a little while to learn mounting.
If you like the way the hatchet looks, but want something for street, check out the surly black floyd tire. It will still do grassy or light off-road riding where you don’t need as much grip, but you’ll have to pump up the tire quite a lot not to have issues with auto-steer, which can greatly affect the steering and camber effects on a unicycle.
The point of the frame was to be able to run a fat tire (which requires a bunch of frame clearance, so the frames normally stick out pretty wide) and minimize knee clearance. I think the fat tire revolution is more about snow and off road use, the big tire and rim are probably not the greatest for road riding. It’s a beefy uni, wide hub, big rim and fat tire… It may be a handful to ride and have a mind of it’s own, but if you like the way it looks and want it, go for it. Just keep the box so when you sell it here (to me:D) you can ship it.
Did anyone ever get around to test the Vee Apache out on a Nimbus? I am tempted to do it but don’t know about spacing issues and also if I am out and it starts to rain I can only imagine the hell I would be in for with a perfectly slick tire.
Still, I love my fat unis and this would be a nice thing in the right conditions.
According to Sheldon Brown the Apache should do OK in the rain or at least it shouldn’t do any worse as long as I stick to the road.
Tread for on-road use
Bicycle tires for on-road use have no need of any sort of tread features; in fact, the best road tires are perfectly smooth, with no tread at all!
Unfortunately, most people assume that a smooth tire will be slippery, so this type of tire is difficult to sell to unsophisticated cyclists. Most tire makers cater to this by putting a very fine pattern on their tires, mainly for cosmetic and marketing reasons. If you examine a section of asphalt or concrete, you’ll see that the texture of the road itself is much “knobbier” than the tread features of a good-quality road tire. Since the tire is flexible, even a slick tire deforms as it comes into contact with the pavement, acquiring the shape of the pavement texture, only while in contact with the road.
People ask, “But don’t slick tires get slippery on wet roads, or worse yet, wet metal features such as expansion joints, paint stripes, or railroad tracks?” The answer is, yes, they do. So do tires with tread. All tires are slippery in these conditions. Tread features make no improvement in this.
I’ve often wondered about this. My wife’s recumbent has a 20" front tire (for pavement) that has a fine crosshatch tread pattern. It occurs to me that a completely slick tire might weigh more than the equivalent tire with the same amount of “tread” on it. This because the tread has no gaps or grooves in it, meaning more material. So they probably just make it a reasonable percentage thinner, to make up for the difference. But unlike a tire with tread on it, it’s probably hard to tell when a slick tire is wearing out until you see threads. That’s why maybe I feel more comfortable having some type of tread on my tires.
The Apache weighs in at 1000 grams (according to the internet) so you are probably right about making it thinner to cut back on the weight. It is the only way I can see that it weighs what it does.
I hadn’t considered the problem of how to tell when a slick (bald) tire goes bald. I will have to look into this. I’ve ordered an Apache (because at the least I’ll have a little fun with it) and it will most likely take the better part of a month to get here but I’ll keep everyone posted as to how it does.
Please post pics/review of the apache fatty slick when it arrives. Throwing one on a hatchet was the first thing that came to mind when I saw it on the vee tire website. Would love to know how it rides on a uni.
Does the shape of the post change anything about the way it rides?
Or does it just change the way it looks?
Would that unicycle be appropriate for street riding? (26")
Since I am a “lightweight” would it be more difficult
First off, I’d say, 3.8" tire does not shine of the street… more rolling resistance and friction from increased surface area on pavement. So it won’t win any awards for speed. When you use the hatchet for what it was designed for however, it absolutely shines.
Re: frame design placing uprights behind knees…works like a champ.
More importantly however, the 3.8" tire is an absolute ANIMAL off-road.
What that width and volume gets you is the ability to ride pretty low psi and just roll over virtually anything. Although it takes a bit more horsepower to push that fat wheel, the ability to roll over trail obstacles, if you are an intermediate rider, will totally open up new terrain that you could never before ride without multiple UPDs. With proper inflation, it will also hop like a pogo stick and act like a shock absorber so that your back won’t feel as pounded after a long ride.
Put simply, if you ride trails and single track, and you’re an intermediate rider, the hatchet will be a total game changer for you.
I was skeptical at first, though the design was stupid and hated the branding, but it is absolutely functional for the riding that I do. Re: the fat tire bike craze, unless you’re just running downhill and want to do so without a shock, or on sand, I still think fat tires on bikes are stupid as shit. On a unicycle, for off-road, they are magic. Had I not been able to try one at Silvia Cycles in Campbell,Ca, I’d never have even considered purchasing… now I rarely ride anything else for trails…and FYI… stupid branding and color are easy to lose w new powdercoat
I am still waiting on the Apache to arrive but I went ahead and ordered a Snowshoe 2xl as well for the winter (complete with stud kit).
I have some Clownshoe rims hanging around and am wondering if the 2xl on a clownshoe will fit.
Anyone know if is there a version of the 125mm disc hub that is 32 hole?
I currently have the 36 hole version on a Large Marge and would love to just have two wheels I could swap out.
I could set the 2xl wheel up with some spirit cranks and the disc on the outside but then I believe I would have to redo the brake every time I switched wheels.
Maybe there is a 36 hole 100mm or 80mm rim out there?