ok… so i’m kinda a newbie when it comes down to the spiffy terminology. is q-factor the amount of flex that cranks have? thats what i understand from reading other thread but im still not sure. thanks.

Q-factor is how wide apart your feet are when on the pedals. Q-factor is a combination of the width of the hub, the amount that the cranks flare out, and the length of the pedal spindle, and where your feet are on the pedals.

Unicycle cranks tend to be straight and not flare out. Some unicycle cranks have a little bit of flare though. Bike cranks tend to have a lot of flare so the cranks can clear the chainstays on the bike.

Most people are talking about how much the cranks bend outwards when they talk about q-factor on unicycles.

More q-factor in the cranks usually means you’re going to hit your ankles less on the cranks.

What about q-factor for audio? Do you play around with that much?

Never. I’m not even aware of the q-factor as it applies to audio.

Q factor is the angle of the crank from the axle to pedal. A larger Q factor makes the uni wider from pedal to pedal then a smaller Q factor.

so what is it easier to ride with(wide vs. small).

Depends on the style of riding. For freestyle riding a small q-factor in the cranks is better. For muni riding a larger q-factor can have advantages since you’re less likely to hit your ankles. For high speed riding where you are spinning the pedals at a high rpm a smaller q-factor is better since it causes less wobble in the wheel.

No, Q-factor is the distance the pedals are apart. The angle of the cranks contributes to Q-factor, but it’s only one of the factors. Even straight cranks can have different Q-factors due to their width.

By the way, it’s short for “quack factor”, as in, pedaling with your feed splayed out like a duck.

what about trials…kh moments have low q-factor i think… are those good?

they have if you ask me a high q factor but thats because im used to my koxx street cranks wich have a small q-factor…
the KH moments are great cranks though…

which are easier on your ankles?

My friend who rides BMX has been telling me to pull my cranks outward, but someone in this blog said unicycle cranks should just be straight. Because my cranks are flared way out like a bmx bike so does that make a big difference?

it doesnt matter a shit if they are straight or flared.

saying they are surposed to be a certain q factor is like saying that a computer is not surposed to contain plastic, weather it does or not is completeley up to the manufacturer, if your cranks feel fine to you then who cares about how much q factor they have.

and as for difference, go ride a uni with straight cranks and see if you notice a big difference…

You do notice, and it it feels a little weird, but not too bad, and not for too long either.

I think having a larger q-factor gives your a little bit more control on your uni. Im not saying any uni with straight cranks and small q-factor has less control, cause I rode a DX for a long time, and had plenty of control. lol

Put it this way. Stand feet together, get pushed to the side, you fall pretty easily, stand feet apart, get pushed to the side, you have more control. Its kinda like that for the unis, but not as drastic.

i’m just trying to get more opinions for when i get new cranks, i’m not saying one brand or another is better… i just want to see if anyone preffered anything specific and why.

As a general rule, based on comments made over the years by many top riders in their various areas, I’d offer this:

Narrow Q for speed, wide Q for stability.

George Peck liked a wide stance on his mountain ultimate wheels, for example, when the conventional wisdom for those was that narrower was better. Of course hardly anyone else was taking their ultimate wheels on rocky trails…

For racing, the wider your stance, the more wobble you get in your line. In other words, your unicycle doesn’t trace as straight a line on the ground as it would with a narrower setup. Some people naturally wobble more than others, but narrowing the pedals helps.

Most people want to ride somewhere in between; fast sometimes and technical other times. Then you have to decide which is more important to you, along with the factors of ankle-banging and other things. If you naturally walk toe-out, for instance, you’re more likely to appreciate cranks with some Q.

This is interesting…do you think it works the other way as well?

I tend to walk with my toes in a little…and I prefer less Q.

i walk with my toes in quite a bit… what cranks do you have?

I have the Qu-Ax alloy cranks on my 29er. Zero Q and I love em.

I have the KH/Onza cranks on my trials, and they feel so wide…

are KH moment considered wide or narrow with 10mm q-factor. i don’t really know anything to compare them to.