Ping DangerUni: Stripping Nuts

Your KH seats: I love the comfort factor. Handles are great. I’ve got one on 24X3 MUni and one on 29er. Everyone I ride with has them on there MUnis, 29ers and some Cokers. We love them.

However, I have trouble with the carriage bolts eventually stripping out the square holes in the aluminum plate. Since this is such an on-going problem, I know you’ve given it some thought.

I’ve had the Dremel out and can cut slots, etc. And I found that you can loosen LockTite by kissing it briefly with the flame of a propane torch. (I betcha there’s safer methods). But this is such an ordeal. The construction is intended to allow taking off the seat from below without major invasive surgery. But one wrong move on that nut and its all over.

Would it be ok to make that aluminum plate thicker? I know that would add weight. Its all about cost and pricepoints and value, etc. But a lower cost seat could weigh a few ounces more, it wouldn’t bother me much. But I don’t fly very high either. A higher cost seat could use more expensive material.

I dont mean to presume you haven’t gone thru this brainwork. It just comes up in my case a bit too often.

I try to be careful, but eventually I’ll strip those little hummers. On one rough MUni crash, I bent the seatpost and had to replace it. On the 29er, I’ve broken the seatpost right up under the seat and will be ordering a new one soon. These things happen.

By the way, I own 2 Miyata Seats and 2 KH Seats which are at least 1 or 2 or even 3 yrs old and I’m having this trouble with all of them. The Miyatas are 10 times worse.

Maybe its me. Lets not rule that out. What should I be doing differently? When these seats are completely toast, I’ll buy KH Seats to replace them, no doubt about that. I just want to be able to remove/replace 4 nuts without crossing my fingers. All of my seats are pretty old. Is this yesteryear’s topic, now a mute point?

Actually, the nuts aren’t being stripped, the stamped square holes in the bolt plate are being rounded but I think this is what you mean and describe. Sheet steel plates should really be used in all three places: the rear bumper guard two bolt pattern, the saddle four bolt pattern, and the handle three bolt pattern. These are small pieces and weigh very little even though they are steel. The problem is the added production cost. Three additional pieces have to be manufactured and assembled correctly. They are, however, much less likely to round out than aluminum on a per unit thickness basis.

I have made simple parts like these and installed them in Miyata saddles. But Miyata saddles are easy to take apart. The KH saddles are difficult from what I understand.

It surprises me that aluminum is used in the KH saddle. It is much more likely to break than just bend. Are you sure the base is aluminum? I would have thought that a thinner sheet steel would have been used.

No, I’m not sure of the material. I bet you’re right.
Yes, its the square holes in the metal saddle-plate that are rounding out.
I wouldn’t mind if I could buy the seats and separately buy the steel plate as an upgrade. But I don’t have the where-whithall to create my own. Cutting square holes in steel would be tough for me to handle. I could however make it out of clay, wax, wood or plaster. I could draw a beautiful representation in pencil with light-source and 3D effect. But cutting steel…outa my league.

Re: Ping DangerUni: Stripping Nuts

I forgot, I also have the KH on my Summit. That makes 3 KH seats.

…Are you sure the base is aluminum? I would have thought that a thinner sheet steel would have been used.

I am pretty sure it is aluminum - or at least some sort of alloy. It does not rust, and it is lightweight (etc) like aluminum.

I have solved this problem.

I used:

  1. Torker LX frame.
  2. GB4 STEEL seat stiffener
  3. KH foam
  4. Seat cover (I used leather, but I think it would work with faux)
  5. Steve Howard front handle

The result:
An extremely durable seat that has the comfort of the KH, and all of the durability and stiffness that I need (at 6’5" 222+ pounds). It is a tad heavy, however, the total weight of my unicycle is still 16 pounds - and I never have to worry about losing air or maintainence costs. I am also able to repair any part of the seat easily. I think that the GB4 stiffener is an awesome product (even though I just found out that it is rusting in there - perhaps I should have painted it).

It would be nice if the KH seats were modular like described above - or if the KH foam was sold separately for this purpose. For now, it is pretty easy to aquire a KH seat that can be salvaged in this way.

I am willing to bet that Kris will move to a design like the one I described above and save some weight (somewhere) in the process.

The plate is not aluminum. Aluminum would break within about a day of normal riding. The plates have been made thicker in the 2004 models, and Kris has yet to bget serious flex in the version he’s been riding since Moab. I think the plate is steel, since, actually, it does rust, or experrience some sort of corrosion (I left the rinforcement plate from an old KH saddle out for a few weeks, and it got some superficial rust). Also, I don’t think the plate should be made thicker for the strength of those holes. Just don’t overtighten them, and don’t use premanent locktite. The bottom line is, as with almost all unicycle equipment maintainence and installation is: be careful, and don’t overtighten stuff.

Originally posted by gerblefranklin
The plate is not aluminum. Aluminum would break within about a day of normal riding.

Oddly, mine did not rust (like the GB4 is). Perhaps it was made differently.

The plates have been made thicker in the 2004 models

I bought mine in 2004. Perhaps I was sold a 2003 model. Mine had flex.

Also, I don’t think the plate should be made thicker for the strength of those holes. Just don’t overtighten them, and don’t use premanent locktite. The bottom line is, as with almost all unicycle equipment maintainence and installation is: be careful, and don’t overtighten stuff.

Here, I definately disagree.
In my case, I did NOT overtighten the bolts. The plate actually snapped in half from flex (pushing down and pulling up as I learned to ride). Once the plate broke, the bolts spin freely (because it broke at the bolts). I ride MUCH harder now but feel no flex with the GB4 which IS much thicker than the KH plate (or at least the one that I had).
From it’s design, I do not have to worry about overtightening it - I think the bolts would strip or snap first.

Also, I have not had a problem with the nuts loosening with the new setup either, whereas before, I actually put two nuts on the screw tightened against each other to keep them from coming loose.

Bingo. That’s what I want.
I’ve also used the 2 nuts trick with success.
Thanks for the input.
-Mud.

Yeah I’ve taken apart 4 KH seats and all have had the plate snapped at the front pair of bolts. Prolly because it is like a 1/16’’ thick piece of steel that wore out. Thats what it looks like to me anyways. The seats I’ve seen this on were 2 old ones and 2 newer ones (with the nylony cover).

An alloy? You mean like steel?

Can I use the GB4 Stiffener on the KH Velo seat?

No.
But, for only $10 you can get the Torker LX frame.

(keep in mind you may need other components to get the setup to work like
rail adapter/seat post, seat cover, Steve Howard front handle. But, the it’s definately worth the money).