Pedals

I had good luck getting some information on rims and sprockets last week, so I
am going fishing for information again. Hopefully I’m not abusing the privilege.

    The other day I was riding my cheap, "Made in "T"" unicycle on the
    concrete patio when my wife chased me off so that she could water
    plants. I decided to be adventurous and have an initial go at MUni'ing.
    We don't have pedestrian pavements or curbs where I live, just dirt
    paths with rounded pebbles and boulders in them. The last time I tried
    to ride on the path near my house I face planted and got some nasty
    brush burns (I was actually pretty lucky). This time the skills practice
    on the flat patio and some internet research must have paid off. I was
    able to do half decent on a slight downhill grade and made some progress
    riding uphill. The only thing that went wrong was the sound my uni made
    each time I hit another one of the frequent bumps. It was like a
    drumstick tapping on a tin can. I isolated the source of the clinks in
    the pedal-crank arm attachments. The pedals were coming unscrewed and
    would have fallen off had I kept riding. This problem was easy to fix
    with a crescent wrench, and I was back in MUni action (well, Morenci,
    Arizona MUni action). Still, the incident made me think about what I'm
    going to do when my cheap plastic pedals give out in the not too distant
    future. Back in the late 80's I had a pair of plastic pedals fall apart
    inside just from me practicing idling (unicycle idling, the skill) on my
    living room carpet. The bike shop guy assured me that time that they
    were mountain bike pedals and were durable. I found that replacing them
    with metal pedals made a difference for the better. Has technology
    changed much in the past 10 or 15 years, or are metal pedal assemblies,
    in general, more durable than plastic? (I know that metal pedals tend to
    rip up shins. I don't care; pedal durability is more important to me
    than comfort.) The main thing I want to avoid is having to continually
    spend money and wait for repairs on stuff that lasts, at most, a month.
    My mind is more open to the possibility of purchasing a better unicycle
    than my pocketbook is right now, so I've got to be content with working
    on skills, tinkering with the mechanics of the cheap unicycle, and
    saving for the uni I really want in the meantime.

    I know this was a bit long winded, but any input you can give me would
    help (other than, "You idiot! Why did you buy that cheap "T"cycle in the
    first place?" Answer: it was the only one available in the bike shop and
    I didn't know where else to look for a uni [I didn't have Internet
    access at the time]).

Thanks for taking these questions into consideration.

Carl Trachte Morenci, Arizona

Re: Pedals

First of all, I think many of us would never have gotten started unicycling if
they had been made in Germany instead of Taiwan. So don’t apologize and don’t
knock 'em. When a person is ready to upgrade then great. 2 of my 3 unicycles are
Taiwan. Actually, now that I think about it, my Schwinn is made in Taiwan too.

ANYWAY, make sure you are not riding your unicycle backwards. Look on the end of
the pedals (on the end of the bolt). Make sure that your right foot is on the
one that has an “R” stamped on it. This could be causing your pedals to unscrew.

Good luck.

Brian Berlin Jane and Carl Trachte <janencarl@aepnet.com> wrote in message
news:392872F2.C0A3BE5F@aepnet.com
> I had good luck getting some information on rims and sprockets last week, so I
> am going fishing for information again. Hopefully I’m not abusing the
> privilege.
>
> The other day I was riding my cheap, “Made in “T”” unicycle on the concrete
> patio when my wife chased me off so that she could water plants. I decided to
> be adventurous and have an initial go at MUni’ing. We don’t have pedestrian
> pavements or curbs where I live, just dirt paths with rounded pebbles and
> boulders in them. The last time I tried to ride on the path near my house I
> face planted and got some nasty brush burns (I was actually pretty lucky).
> This time the skills practice on the flat patio and some internet research
> must have paid off. I was able to do half decent on a slight downhill grade
> and made some progress riding uphill. The only thing that went wrong was the
> sound my uni made each time I hit another one of the frequent bumps. It was
> like a drumstick tapping on a tin can. I isolated the source of the clinks in
> the pedal-crank arm attachments. The pedals were coming unscrewed and would
> have fallen off had I kept riding. This problem was easy to fix with a
> crescent wrench, and I was back in MUni action (well, Morenci, Arizona MUni
> action). Still, the incident made me think about what I’m going to do when my
> cheap plastic pedals give out in the not too distant future. Back in the late
> 80’s I had a pair of plastic pedals fall apart inside just from me practicing
> idling (unicycle idling, the skill) on my living room carpet. The bike shop
> guy assured me that time that they were mountain bike pedals and were durable.
> I found that replacing them with metal pedals made a difference for the
> better. Has technology changed much in the past 10 or 15 years, or are metal
> pedal assemblies, in general, more durable than plastic? (I know that metal
> pedals tend to rip up shins. I don’t care; pedal durability is more important
> to me than comfort.) The main thing I want to avoid is having to continually
> spend money and wait for repairs on stuff that lasts, at most, a month. My
> mind is more open to the possibility of purchasing a better unicycle than my
> pocketbook is right now, so I’ve got to be content with working on skills,
> tinkering with the mechanics of the cheap unicycle, and saving for the uni I
> really want in the meantime.
>
> I know this was a bit long winded, but any input you can give me would
> help (other than, "You idiot! Why did you buy that cheap "T"cycle in the
> first place?" Answer: it was the only one available in the bike shop and I
[i]> didn’t know where else to look for a uni [I didn’t have Internet access at[/i]
> the time]).
>
> Thanks for taking these questions into consideration.
>
> Carl Trachte Morenci, Arizona

Re: Pedals

>Has technology changed much in the past 10 or 15 years, or are metal pedal
>assemblies, in general, more durable than plastic?

I replaced the platform block pedals on my Schwinn with a cheap pair of Wellgo
plastic mountain bike pedals that I bought at the local bike shop. The little
reflectors fell off after several months, but aside from that I have been really
surprised at how well they have held up! I ride this unicycle nearly every day
and have had these pedals on for nearly a year now and they still spin nicely
with very little play in the bearings.

-Rick

Re: Pedals

>"You idiot! Why did you buy that cheap “T"cycle in the first place?”

“T” is for Titanium, right?

The great thing I like about “T” cycles is they’re upgradable. You can get a
$100 pile of fun, and when you get bored, you start upgrading parts.

As for pedals, I’ve seen some plastic pedals wear out, but I’ve also seen some
really cheezy looking metal pedals that probably wouldn’t last any longer. I’ve
even had an $18 pair of “trap” style pedals that the rivets came loose and
started creaking. The last pair of pedals I bought, though, was a $16 set of BMX
replaceable-pin platforms. Replace the pins if they get dull, replace or grease
the ball bearings if needed, but I don’t think you’ll ever break the pedal.
(Someone may speak otherwise here.) There are no rivets to come loose, either.

Chris

Re: Pedals

On bicycles, the left-hand cranks are left-threaded and the right-hand cranks
are right-threaded (normal) so that normal riding actually tightens the screwing
of the pedals into the cranks as you ride. Bikes have a more obvious left and
right than unicycles, but what happens if you just twist your seat 180 degrees?
If your uni is threaded like a bike, your pedals should actually tighten as you
go, rather than loosen :slight_smile:

Karl

Jane and Carl Trachte wrote:

> on a tin can. I isolated the source of the clinks in the pedal-crank arm
> attachments. The pedals were coming unscrewed and would have fallen off had I
> kept riding. This problem was easy to fix with a crescent wrench, and I was
> back in MUni action (well, Morenci, Arizona MUni action). Still, the incident
> made me think about what I’m going to do when my cheap plastic pedals give out
> in the not too distant future.
>
> Carl Trachte

Re: Pedals

You know, I swear I was riding the d*** thing forward! I think what happened was
that in my excitement over my first real (?) MUni experience, I just kept
hopping back on the wrong way.

Karl Rudnick wrote:
>
> On bicycles, the left-hand cranks are left-threaded and the right-hand cranks
> are right-threaded (normal) so that normal riding actually tightens the
> screwing of the pedals into the cranks as you ride. Bikes have a more obvious
> left and right than unicycles, but what happens if you just twist your seat
> 180 degrees? If your uni is threaded like a bike, your pedals should actually
> tighten as you go, rather than loosen :slight_smile:
>
> Karl
>
> Jane and Carl Trachte wrote:
>
> > on a tin can. I isolated the source of the clinks in the pedal-crank arm
> > attachments. The pedals were coming unscrewed and would have fallen off had
> > I kept riding. This problem was easy to fix with a crescent wrench, and I
> > was back in MUni action (well, Morenci, Arizona MUni action). Still, the
> > incident made me think about what I’m going to do when my cheap plastic
> > pedals give out in the not too distant future.
> >
> > Carl Trachte

Re: Pedals

Karl Rudnick wrote:
>
> On bicycles, the left-hand cranks are left-threaded and the right-hand cranks
> are right-threaded (normal) so that normal riding actually tightens the
> screwing of the pedals into the cranks as you ride. Bikes have a more obvious
> left and right than unicycles, but what happens if you just twist your seat
> 180 degrees? If your uni is threaded like a bike, your pedals should actually
> tighten as you go, rather than loosen :slight_smile:
>
> Karl

What is it that makes the pedals unscrew like that? Intuition tells me that you
would want left handed threads on the right pedal, and vice versa. But it is
obviously not so.

Chris

ps. What a dirty trick it would be to turn everybody’s seats around…

Re: Pedals

Chris Reeder wrote:
>
> What is it that makes the pedals unscrew like that? Intuition tells me that
> you would want left handed threads on the right pedal, and vice versa. But it
> is obviously not so.

The bearings in the pedal reverses the direction of the force that is exerted on
shaft of the pedal that is screwed into the crank. It’s similar to how a two
wheeled unicycle is reversed.


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Re: "T"cycle rebuild

> Chris Reeder wrote:

> > If you want to do any other upgrades on your “T” unicycle, my taiwaneze
> > Zephyr has about all the mods imaginable. Miyata seat with carbon fiber
> > seat body, super wide 26" rim, 2.7" Intense downhill tire, BMX platform
> > pedals, Black Widow 7" crank arms, and Semcycle Deluxe axle (which lasts me
> > about a month). The only thing it doesn’t offer is the frame won’t hold a
> > 27mm shock post, and you can’t buy beefy enough replacement axles for any
> > unicycle… yet.
> >
> > Chris

Carl Trachte wrote:
>
> Chris, If you don’t mind me asking, do you install your own axles, or do you
> take the cycle to the shop? Also, how did you get the 26" rim to fit on what
> was (presumably) a 20" unicycle?

Carl, The hardest part about replacing axles is that you have to take all the
spokes out and rebuild the wheel using your new axle. I used to build my own
wheels-- but now I’m harder on unicycles, and I can’t build wheels with an even
enough high tension to have my rims stay straight. So now I calculate the spoke
length, lace them up, and have the bike shop finish the job by truing and
tensioning the wheel.

As for 26" wheels, all you need is about 3" of extra fork length. The steel
tubing used in the old ten speed handlebars works fine for making the extension.
A couple welds and some work with a drill, and your forks will be long enough to
fit most any wheel. (I’ve had 27x1.25 and
26x2.7 in mine)

Chris