NIMBUS ORACLE 24" 26" 27.5" HELP please

I’m super excited about this sport but still just in the “baby steps” stage of learning. I know I want to off-road but nothing too crazy. I want to start saving for a MUNI but I’m stressed about which one to beg my wife premission for. Folks I only get one shot at this as my better half will not allow more then one more toy coming home with me.

I’m 57…5 foot 9 tall and 160 bls. I want to ride on dirt hiking trails and moderate mountain bike trails. Plus I do want to ride around my neighborhood streets as I’m thinking to replace some of my jogging with this fun yet heart pounding sport.

I’ve been staring at these three Oracles for days and just can’t decide. The 24 could be an easy step up from my “Club 20” (that I’m learning on) but it has the “D-mount” plus a 24 may be too slow someday. As I said I can’t buy more then one.

Please give me your advice which one along with what crank length to go with 150-165-170.

Unless you are going to do very technical muni, you could drop the 24 from the list. 26 and 27.5 will be very similar, 27.5 seems to be the new mt. biking trend, there are a lot of good tire choices. My vote would be 27.5 It will probably take a while to be proficient riding it, but will be worth it down the road.

crank size: 150 will be the longest you will need. depending on terrain you could go down to 137 or 125

If by technical you mean the wild stuff I see on youtube then correct not for me. I do want to be able to handle some rolling hill trails not just flat stuff. I was leaning toward the 26 as a safer jump then going all the way up to 27.5. I had heard about the tire choices being better for 27.5 is 26 dying off? I would hate to be “down the road” and think the 26 too small however could I be super fustrated jumping up to 27.5 from the start??

I’ve been reading that you’re a beginner…
I suggest, before getting a muni, you’re better to get solid freemounts.
When i switched from 19 to 24, i almost could not enjoy the thing.
I wasn’t able to freemount yet, so i had to go back to the basics.
If you can wait and delay your uni-shoppings, try to concentrate on freemounts, idling, hopping up small things and riding backwards.
Then get a 27,5 or even a 29!

Side note

I really don’t understand why went you right pedal you don’t just torque/turn left and then left pedal torque/turn right?? Because of the force on that pedal. Also what does this “auto steer” term mean. Thanks

I have the Oracle 26 with 150mm cranks. I love it. I got the 26 because I was concerned with the 24 being too slow. Plus, I think it’s a good choice, being right in the middle. And, it will be a little faster for riding around your neighborhood. Good luck with whatever you go with.

Agree with anton005 and superfunk. I bought a 26" mountain uni very early on and it’s been great, but if I were doing it now I’d choose 27.5". Tire choices are trending toward that size (with the caveat that if you absolutely love a certain tire in a certain size then choice is irrelevant–eg, 24" Duro Wildlife for many) and for riding that I do, which isn’t super technical or rock garden hoppy, the rollover ability of a larger tire would be a good thing. A possible downside I see is that, at a comfortable pedal cadence, you’ll be traveling faster on a 27.5" and you might get winded more quickly from working harder. That was surprising to me, how fast I redlined while riding trails and had to stop for a breather and to get my heart rate down.

That said, I don’t think it’s super critical. If a wheel size and tire choice was perfect at a given moment, something else would probably better suit the conditions a quarter of a mile down the trail, or on the trail you’ll ride the next day. Ideal balances and perfect compromises exist more in forum threads than in the actual world IMHO. They’re all lots of fun. You’ll enjoy whatever you get.

I think you will want the 26" or 27.5" wheel.

The cranks that you should really consider are the KH Spirit, two hole, 127mm/150mm. With them you’ll be able to put your pedals on the 127mm holes when you are riding on the street and and be able to switch to the 150mm length if you are venturing on the trail. You will get the best of both worlds with those cranks.


My vote is for the 27.5. I have a 20 and 24 also, but like the speed. The rollover capability of this thing on the trails is greatly appreciated, too.

If in doubt, go bigger!

I agree with Universe:

It would be great if there was a unicycle club nearby or someone close enough to lend you their Muni… then you could have a go and see how it feels.

I’d also say, don’t be in too much of a rush, enjoy your 20" and refine your skills / gain new ones. Maybe then you could get a Muni on special or a great deal on a quality second hand one… and then your wife will be happier when you come to her saying… “I think I actually might want 3 unicycles not just two” =P

Keep enjoying being on one wheel!

Technical would be rocky areas with large drops or very rooty areas, usually steep. Think areas where walking/hiking would be difficult :slight_smile: The 27.5 will handle most things you throw at it, certainly rolling trails no problem.

I think you would not notice the difference between 27.5 or 26 hopping on them for the first time, they feel and handle very similarly.

I wouldn’t say 26 is dying off, but it seems like tire companies are focusing on the 27.5 more.

Either choice is a winner, no wrong answer here.

DO NOT BEG. It will ruin your bargaining strength in the future, when you “need” to buy the next one. Yes, if you stick with this sport there will be a next one, but by then your wife may see you’re getting your money’s worth.

Depending on the tire, a good Muni may be not-so-great on paved streets. People in this thread can suggest tires that are good for both. If you aren’t planning to ride on lots of mud or snow, you don’t need an aggressive tire.

I’m going to go with the general consensus here and say 26 or 27.5. Don’t agonize over which of those; it’s not that big of a size difference. One is slightly faster, one is slightly better able to handle the technical stuff. My first new Muni since 2003 was a 26" and I love it. My previous was a 24", but with 3" tires, your actual tire diameter is bigger; probably about 26 on my old 24, and 28 on my current 26. Don’t agonize, just pick one of those. For cranks, I agree that a 2-hole system will offer you an easy way to try multiple sizes. Do the 125/150s. 150 for dirt (at least in the beginning) and 127 for street. 127 will also be fun on dirt if the trail isn’t steep or technical. Get a pedal wrench.

Short answer: It just does; bikes have been doing it that way for at least 130 years. For more about the why, consider the word “precession”. The force that the crank feels is not what you do when you pedal, it’s a spiral of force, around and around the threads.

That usually applies to a tire with aggressive treads, or a squarish profile, when you ride it on a slope, or along the edge of a cambered street. Some tires are better at letting you just ride straight, while others tend to want to aim you downhill. When riding perpindicular to steep slopes, some tires may also want to steer you into the slope, though that’s the exception (and not necessarily a bad thing…).

It’s easy enough to use clear logic on the second uni purchase. The learner is great for the basics, and can be used for the next person who wants to learn. But it’s slow and not good on bumps. Not as good of an exercise machine. It gets harder to justify the additional wheels as you start filling in all the major sizes…

(I have, or have had, multiple unicycles in most of these sizes: 12", 20", 24", 26", 27", 36", 40", 45". However most of these were acquired prior to me being married…and she married me anyway! :))

I faced a similar situation this spring… learned on a trials 20", tried some local trails and had a blast, wanted something a little bigger/faster/better at rolling over obstacles/with a brake. I also wanted to do some back-road (paved and gravel) riding. I chose a nimbus oracle 26, then put some nimbus shadow bars on it, the KH spirit 150/127mm dual hole cranks, and have been riding the wheel off it :sunglasses:

I ride moderate trails (and living in the foothills of the Adirondack mountains, not much is flat around here) and the 26" feels like a good compromise… a 24" would have worked better on the trails, but I wouldn’t have been as happy on the road. A 27.5" probably would have been fine too, but it seemed like more of a jump up in size, and that made me nervous. Basically echoing previous advice in this thread, I think. Good luck!

24" muni is not a very popular choice these days. After riding muni for 3 years primarily on a 26" Oracle, I decided to assemble a lightweight 24" unicycle (no brake/no handlebars/2.1" tire) and have been riding it exclusively these last few weeks. Yesterday I made it up a hill (with a pesky rock garden near the end), which has been the bane of my existence, without UPD-ing–for the first time ever–on my 24". LanceB (on the forum) told me that 24" was his favorite muni size and that he felt more comfortable riding in technical conditions on the 24". My opinion is that the 24" might help you build skills, because of its maneuverability, more than the larger sizes. I run my 24" with 150mm cranks, and my 26" XC/muni has 170mm cranks (yes, long, but the hills in my neighborhood are steep and I weigh over 200 lbs.). I am able to spin considerably faster on the 24/150 than the 26/170, so I actually ride faster on the smaller wheel. The tire selection on 24" kind of sucks, but there will always be the Duro, as well as a few other choices (as long as there are still kids’ mountain bikes). You will be more successful mounting the 24". I agree with the previous poster who wrote that you need to practice free-mounting on your 20". If you’re interested in more technical muni, consider the 24"; if you’ll be likely riding more flowy XC/muni, then the larger, 27.5" might be for you. Bottom line: None of them are bad choices.

Cost of having two wheels

For a brief moment I though "Hey just by the 27.5 because the frame will take smaller wheels and have a 26 or 24 wheel made for it as well as the 27.5 that comes with it. This plan quickly went away when I added up the cost on another wheel, hub, spokes, tire, tube etc.

The Cost?

Yes, alot less expensive than that larger number of frames and seats! If they all used ISIS disc hubs, you would not need to adjust your equiptment, just swap and go. Road to Muni, and back the same day.

You’re right, but I’m tempted to tell the OP to ignore you :wink: I got my 26" muni when I’d been riding for 2 months and I was ready for it at that point and got going on it fairly quickly. So maybe not quite immediately for the OP, but he shouldn’t have to wait all that long. Though I was also static mounting consistently by that point (I learned to freemount within days of learning to ride using the method in EASY freemount for Newbies really works!) and got that working on the 26 fairly quickly - it’s not much fun doing muni if you can’t.

As for other skills, I couldn’t idle or ride backwards when I got mine (only learned to ride backwards 5 years later!) and whilst I could hop I did quite a lot of muni riding before using that on a ride. No need for the OP to have any of those skills to enjoy unicycling off road.


I bought the Oracale 27.5". It is fun to ride and the tire is easier for me to ride on the street then the 26" knobby tire a friend has on his 26". So far very happy.

and you feel more wobbly on the 27.5 compared to the knobby 26, because of reduced friction?