Red Menace 36 update

Well, after being distracted with non-uni projects all Summer, I finally decided a few weeks ago to finish my final design version of The Red Menace. It has a choice of 5 different gear ratios using common bicycle granny rings. The transmission is my smoothest version yet. Less chain tension and no crank play whatsoever. And a Hope Mono disc brake setup, chosen specifically because the Mono had a reputation as a sucky bike disc, and true to form, works just wonderfully on the 36" wheel with no grabbing and great modulation. The paint is a red fading slightly to brighter on the top. The only part remaining to be added is the super-secret custom road saddle, in red snakeskin, from the world’s finest saddle maker.


Here’s a front shot of the disc brake:

And here’s the trans. I have pretty much reached the design limit, with the chain centerlines only 1.0" apart.

WOW It is a beauty :smiley:

Looks wonderful, Pete!

I want that uni…

Thats so awesome…

That looks closer to a bike than most uni’s… major frame going on there. Yep.

Wow, function and form come together so beautifully.

… um, Gulp:)


Are those Carbon Fiber cranks?


Ha ha ha…I got to be the second human to ride this baby after Pete christened it in my neighborhood today. I am here to testify that it is one sweet machine, and if anything rides better than it looks, which is saying a lot. Pete is a guy who likes his engineering precise, and it really shows in this latest and finest example of his design. Purple Phaze is nice, but this is nicer.

The gearing today was 1:1.4, giving it an effective 50" wheel size. I wish I could have had more time to get comfortable with the gearing and really crank it up, but I was pretty timid. After a summer of direct drive coker cranking in prep for the MS-150, the gearing felt really strange, even with the ride being super smooth. The uni wasn’t jerky, but I sure was. Still, I made it up the block and back including a fairly tight u-turn, with no UPD.

Signing off now, while saying silent prayers I’ll get another, longer shot on the Red Menace sometime in the future.

Nice machine…I like the incorporation of the disc brake and how the axle and the hub are now inline as opposed to sitting above it- the lowered centre of gravity compared with Purple Phaze must make it more stable at speed.

i dont quite get how it works.

can someone please explain it really slowly for me.

is the left crank not attatched to the hub at all?

wow, that coker is nice! you could ride around the country on that thing.


You sure know how to design a sexy thing like that, it’s a pity you live so far away because I’d sure like to try that thing sometime. I’ve ridden a Schlumpf coker at Unicon and when your cranks are horizontal you feel sort of a click and some of the energy you put in the revolution is just gone. It feels very weird, you said there was no crank play whatsoever, so you’re saying it’s a smoother ride than let’s say, a Schlumpf?
I love the handles you put on that thing, it was your Purple Haze design that made me put handles on mine, and you keep giving me more ideas on improving my own unicycle, keep up the good work!



The hub is different than any other unicycle hub. The hub body is on bearings and is able to rotate around the axle. In that sense the hub is like a bicycle wheel hub that spins on an axle.

The cranks are attached to the axle. There is a jackshaft (the two cogs above the hub). The chain from the cranks drive the jackshaft. The second chain from the jackshaft then goes down and drives the hub. So the hub is able to spin at a different RPM than the axle. That is what allows for gearing. It can be geared up or down based on the size of the cogs.

I hope that makes sense. It’s hard to explain without pictures.

Very nice Pete. It’s projects like this that keep the Seattle area at the forefront of unicycle technology development.

Thanks all! Yep, I am pleased with it. A new paint job on old frame tubes that were cut & re-welded many time can go a long way.

Drawings for my next project have begun.

PS: Happy International Harper Day!!!

That is a very nicely designed peice of equipment. I would really like to try it. It looks so nice.

That is absolutely incredible. What a sexy unicycle. I don’t think I’d ever stop riding it (not that I stop riding my other ones either…)

Man, that’s amazing.

I bet Dave Stockton would duplicate this for anyone interested…and I’d also bet he could do it for less than I would. :slight_smile: