Pure unicycling (or not) ?

Although I’m still learning, I am fairly sure I don’t want brakes or gears on my future unis.

I think it’s because I like the pure simplicity of the unicycle, and that to add brakes or gears somehow contaminates the concept.

So, I thought I’d throw that into the arena for you guys to kick around.


Hi joggerdude :slight_smile:

I can see where you’re coming from :).

I have brakes on some of my uni’s, they save wear and tear on my knees, especially going downhill. When I get my 36’’ I know I’m going to need brakes to keep me from getting carried away with myself and then not be able to out run my upd’s. ( I’m guessing I might have one or two to begin with LOL )
If I could afford it I’d have a shclumpf hub. That would be great for riding along the prom :slight_smile:
Handlebars? Well…

I like a clean uni, minimalist is beautiful

Also a brake to save energy and less impact on the body, geared speed for the thrill and experience. I sit on the fence. I respect and like both

Torn between what I prefer. Honestly I am fortunate enough and put myself in a position where I now have both worlds.

Experience both in this life time if you can we will never forget as you say the pure unicycling.

This subject is highly bought up in the ’ adjusting to a bigger wheel’ thread. Think I even got in bit of trouble for my arrogance… Worth a read

I will always ride both since I have had opportunity to experience both.

For casual rides around your neighbourhood a “pure” unicycle is an excellent vehicle but on longer distances and races (10km/marathon/100km/24h etc) little additions like handlebars and brakes make riding so much more comfortable that I just couldn’t go back riding without them.

Unicycling is neither a religious issue nor one fraught with concerns about morality. Any questions concerning equipment and accessories are purely about you and your own inner demons. The Bible, the Koran, the I Ching, Bhagavad Gita, The Magna Carta, The Book of Mormon, The Declaration of Independence, The U.S. Constitution, and The International Declaration of Human Rights (among other significant documents), are all silent on the matter.

You might as well ask if having pineapple on pizza condemns one to hell. (I had it the other day for the second time, and while it’s not my favorite topping, it really is nice for a change of pace).

So, if you don’t want brakes or gears on your unicycles, don’t get them. Your afterlife will be unaffected. :slight_smile:

Go watch some of Jacob spara riding and Tell me you can do it with out breaks. They open up steeper more tetnical terrain

I’m of the same mindset. The simplicity of unicycling is a big part of appeal for me so none of my unicycles have brakes, gears or handlebars. Of course you might have guessed that from my username. However, if I started to have knee issues from going down hills then I would certainly consider a brake. Unicycling with a brake is better than not unicycling at all. If I lived in the mountains I would probably add a brake.

Most people, including myself, probably couldn’t ride what he rides no matter what kind of gear you have :smiley:

What I’m saying is breaks in my case have opened up crazy gravity riding

I don’t care for brakes, I don’t ride terrain rough enough for that. Gears however… The agility of a 24/26", and the speed of a 36"? I could probably go for that, if buying a geared hub wasn’t twice as expensive as just buying two Uni’s… :roll_eyes:

I understand your viewpoint and mostly agree with it though - I like the raw simplicity of a wheel that’s directly controlled and driven with no fluff inbetween it and your legs, and not many (adult-sized) vehicles provide that :stuck_out_tongue:

I agree, so next time you go jogging you should skip the shoes and socks as they are clearly keeping you from enjoying pure running :stuck_out_tongue:

For my next uni I’m going “super pure unicycling”, so no pedals, no wheels, none of that superfluous stuff, just a frame.

Go big or go home!!

yeah, I saw a guy recently out on the trail with no wheels at all :astonished:

Aspenmike does some ridiculous rides on and off road without gears or brakes so you aren’t necessarily limiting yourself by going that route.

I have one minimalist unicycle, a 700x45 with 114mm cranks, and it is a lot of fun and a nice change from my 29" with disc brake and T-bar. Still, I wouldn’t want it to be my only unicycle.

It always depends on what you do, I like to go out for 40km XC rides after work or after school. Longer rides when I’m off! The brake is really really useful where I live because there’s a lot of downhills (and uphills) so it helps me keep my knees alive! I also have a geared hub which makes it faster, and since I dont own a car (or licenses), my geared uni is my transportation.

Doing an MTB race today on my Muni, I’m happy to have the Schlumpf and the brake, I might not end up last! :smiley:

I completely understand both perspectives, and I currently don’t have any uni’s with brakes. I’d like to get a unicycle with brakes, but I’ll always have a little wheel that is just a wheel, frame and saddle as simple as it can be.

I think the pneumatic tyre is a disgrace. It takes from the simplicity of the unicycle and makes it more comfortable to ride. To make matters worse the manufacturers are now using modern alloys in the frames, making them lighter.
It’s disgraceful I say, and again I say disgraceful. Lol !!!

Yes, since this was thrown into the arena I have decided to step back and reassess my unicycling goals.

No longer am I going to sit on a comfortable seat, use longer cranks for improved climbing power, or glide my brake on downhills to save my legs.

From now on it’s all hard core for me, minimalism at it’s finest: Once I can complete a section of trail, I will start removing parts from my unicycle, one part at a time, with the goal being to complete a section with as little unicyle as possible.

In fact, just last night I did the impossible, I completed a local trail with no unicycle parts on my unicycle! Yes, that’s right, I did a ride without any assistance from my unicycle, totally amazing stuff here :stuck_out_tongue:

You’ve certainly set the standard for other unicyclists to follow. Tonight I’m going unicycling with just the grab handle. I haven’t decided yet whether I should use my 24" grab handle or my 26" grab handle. I’ll decide when I check out the terrain. Lol !!!

I love my MUni; a Wilder frame with a 3" tire and Scott Wallis DeathGrip handle. And no brakes.

I don’t love the no brakes. The thing about a brake is, you don’t have to use it. But when Unicon takes you 1000m down a ski mountain, two days in a row, followed by a Marathon race the following day, those first two days will wreck you (and leave you slow on the course since your knees are destroyed), and then kill you in the Marathon. An extreme example, perhaps, but it plays out for me. If I’m taking my MUni to an exotic place, I want to get maximum performance, and enjoyment, from the ride. (BTW, I did not use my MUni in the Marathon race)

Like I mentioned in the Bigger Wheel thread, I love riding one wheel, both purist and techno. If I want to get somewhere, it’s 36" Schlumpf with handlebar and brakes all the way. But if I’m going to ride in a parade, that’s a different story…

Spelling alert: It’s BRAKES for stopping, and BREAKS for having to buy new parts. Sorry, every once in a while these public service announcements force their way out of me.

You’re absolutely right. Back to the parade analogy, my best parade uni is my 45" big wheel. Hard rubber tire, Schwinn-style frame, cottered cranks and a seat with no handles or bumpers. It’s the best for parades though, where you can swoop, spin, ride fast, and zoom back to the car when the parade is over. :slight_smile:

Me too. Oh yeah, I like riding stuff with one wheel. The one wheel part is still key for me. A choice to deal with difficulty and inefficiency. Add all that other stuff and it’s still a difficult, inefficient vehicle.

George Peck was way ahead of you (and the rest of us) back in the 90s when he started riding ultimate wheels on snowy mountain trails. Enjoy!

I think minimalist thinking is kinda funny. The minimalist rider on a fixie or basic uni is still carrying a phone so technical is has 50 thousand unused and unneeded functions… :roll_eyes: