Request for Advice

Hello, listers…

I have just recently returned to the one-wheel world, after a hiatus of over 15 years!

I bought a cheap Sun 28" for the road and I love it! I’m doing 6-9 miles 3-4 times a week and having a blast. Surprisingly decent quality for an $89 machine (except the seat - yuch!)

Now I want to buy a MUni (and a giraffe, and a…argh! - that was my wife hitting me over the head!) . My question is, can someone please explain the dis/advantages of 24" versus 26"?

I’m 5’ 10’’, 175 lbs, beginner-intermediate, and I want to ride the flat, sandy singletrack we have here in Florida. I also want to learn to hop, and freestyle and do trials (a little).

I’m aware a 26" will roll better over obstacles due to the diameter, and lot’s of 26" tires are available. What about crank length? Will longer cranks make a 26" feel like a 24" with shorter cranks?

Finally, on the road I use a seat height that allows nearly full leg extension. Do you lower the height proportionately when riding rough terrain? Like you do on a mountain bike?

Thanks in advance to anyone who can help steer this 44 year old beginner in the right direction!

Over a distance, on average terrain, the larger diameter wheel will always be faster, whatever you do with the cranks.

On a steady ride with no challenging obstacles, shorter cranks will tend to make you faster on a given wheel size - but there is a threshold after which the lack of control becomes counterproductive. Rule of thumb: don’t go any shorter than the length of cranks which allow you to idle for a short time.

For serious MUni, most people recommend a 24 with the fattest tyrre you can get. A 24 with a 3 inch tyre is better than a 26 with a standard tyre.

On any surface, the fatter tyre will give a smoother, more predictable ride.

For blasting along rough tracks, with no drops or tight turns (e.g. forest trails, fire roads and the like) a 29 or Coker is a good option. Big wheels roll over uneven ground better, but are harder to manoeuvre.

The 24" munis will generally have a 3" or 2.6" tire. A fat 3" tire on a 24" rim has a final diameter that is just a little bit less than a standard 26" XC MTB wheel.

The advantage to going with a 24" wheel instead of a 26" wheel is maneuverability. In technical areas you want more maneuverability. For example when riding through a rock garden or through a maze of tree roots or just riding along a tight trail. With a 24" wheel your feet are in the stable position (pedals horizontal) more often. You’re in a good pedal position to turn and maneuver more often.

A 26" rim with a fat tire is pretty big. A 26" rim with a fat 3" tire has a final diameter that is close to 28" inches, almost as big as a 29er. Not exactly a nimble little unicycle. A 26" wheel with a fat tire is also going to be heavier than a 24" wheel with a fat tire. It is easier to jump and hop with a 24" than a 26" due to the lower weight and smaller wheel size.

If you’re doing technical riding a 24" wheel just works out better. For non-technical riding where speed is the goal then a 29er would be the choice. A 26" with a fat tire would be more for aggressive riding that is too much for a 29er but not tight and technical and something where you’re willing to deal with the extra weight.

No advice But I live in West Palm whare are you IM me at Wakeskater2336 at aol dot com

Thanks for the advice, folks. It looks like I’ll be getting a 24".

Redhead/Wakeskater, I’m in St. Petersburg. Other coast. take care.