Odd wobble after changing cranks

I installed new shorter cranks on my 24" Sun yesterday and when i took it for a spin it felt as if either the cranks or the pedals are bent. They seem to wobble as I ride and it’s not my riding style :). I don’t think it’s the pedals because they were fine on the other cranks.

I’ve had this feeling before on a 24" Club that I rode during unicycle class. The pedals seemed to wobble. After mentioning it to the teacher he rode the unicycle and said it was fine.

Anyone else have this happen? You ride on a new unicycle and the pedals seem to wobble or feel awkward when there wasn’t anything wrong with the unicycle.

I’m going to switch things around to see if anything changes. I usually ride my 29er so maybe it’s just that awkward change in wheel sizes.

Are these cranks a length you haven’t used before, perhaps? Sometimes I notice a bit of wobble if I hop off my 36" with 114s and immediately jump on the 20" with 125s; the muscle memory takes a few moments to adjust.

The new ones are 127mm in length (cheap steel square taper). I currently have the same length on my 29er and those are KH dual hole. Perhaps it’s just the change in wheel size that’s throwing me off this time. I’ll tinker with it a bit. I usually don’t ride my 24" Sun but might need to take it with me on a trip. I was just so surprised at how different it feels. I use to love riding it before I moved to the 29er. I also have a 20" wheel that feels fine. I don’t have trouble switching between that one and the 29er.

Something could well be bent. The axles on my 24" Sun are for sure. I repaired the damaged threads on the hub when I got it but noticed especially when it was chucked in the lathe how far from true it was. It rides just fine like that though.

Did you re-torque the nuts after riding it? If you get any slop there while the cranks are finding their happy place on the tapers, the cranks will set themselves out of square.

I had a pair of cranks like that a while back, and I think it’s not uncommon in cheap cranks to be slightly off-true, even when new. I noticed that I got used to it quite quickly, though, and didn’t notice it after riding it for a little while. I would notice it again if I switched cranks and then back again.
I wouldn’t worry about it. If they were expensive I’d send them back for replacement, but I just lived with it, not really a problem. (Eventually I gave them to a guy whose cranks were trashed, so he didn’t complain about it either. :smiley: )

New cranks? If yes, it’s possible there’s a bend in one, but unlikely. If they’re used, there is more chance they are bent. But that’s only one possibility.

Next is that maybe your old cranks were bent, and your feet are used to that motion. If this is the case, just keep riding the new ones and your feet will adapt.

Also if you changed other factors along with the cranks, that could play in as well. If I read your OP right, you put shorter cranks on an existing unicycle so that’s the only thing that changed.

My big wheel (45") has had chronically bent cranks since it was about a month old. If the wheel falls over, the 6.5" steel (cottered!) cranks tend to bend. When it gets too noticeable I take the bent one off and beat on it with a sledge hammer until it looks straight again. Been doing that off and on since 1982. Don’t try it with alloy cranks! My point is, you can get used to quite a bit of precession in your pedals with a little practice. Unless you switch unicycles a lot, which messes that up.

Going down in wheel size w/ the same crank size, you will feel the dead spots more (6 &12:00) since the 24" has less inertia. Also KH cranks have some Q factor (Spirits more than Moments). All the cheap cranks I’ve seen have near zero Q.

Some cheap cranks bend easily. I dropped my 26" LX in a UPD. It landed on a pedal, bending the crank. Its not that bad, just annoying.

Thanks guys for all the input.

I ended up getting another wheel. :smiley:

Got a good deal on an old 26" LX Torker. The thing is, the cranks are way too long … 170mm! I usually ride with 127mm or 114mm. I couldn’t find replacement LX cranks so I forked out more $ for Venture 2 cranks. Just put them on this evening and wow they’re really nice compared to the steel ones I got for my 24" Sun. No wobble at all.

Always room for one more… Congratulations on the new little bundle of joy. :slight_smile:

170 could be good for muni, but I’d get some stronger cranks.

Yeah 170’s w/ that skinny tire you really feel like you are pedaling a box. I don’t get the box feeling as much on my 24 Muni w/170s & it’s fat heavy tire. I rode a 26x3 w/ 170’s and felt the box even less.