Safety Alert for High Speed Cokeurs

While nearly everyone who rides has at some point or another probably had a UPD caused by untied shoelaces, I recently had my second UPD as a result of “loose fit” jeans!

Because loose fit jeans are much wider around your calves and ankles, there is a decent chance of having your pants get caught in front of the wheel. At slow speeds, it’s not a big deal… but when your really spinning it can easily cause a sudden UPD. From now on, I’ll be wearing standard fit jeans when riding really fast since they stay close to my leg and don’t get in the way.

Try riding with Kooka cranks and the risk of getting long pants caught on the crank is even worse. Kooka’s have a strange nub that sticks up and can catch pant legs. No long pants for me on the Coker now that I have Kooka cranks, and especially the adjustable ones.

I’m having difficulty picturing the type of pants leg catching experience you describe. What exactly happens? Where do the pants get caught? Do the pants get sucked in between the tire and the frame? Or maybe the frame and the cranks?

i can relate to the shoe lace thingie…i recently got some 661 Duelly shoes, they ahve lace savers that hold the laces in place. they are great :slight_smile:

I’m riding with Odyssey Black Widow cranks (which I chose mostly because I saw that you recommended them on UDC).

Though it occured really fast, it seems like what happened was that when my left leg was in the forward most position, all the loose denim from my pants were somehow pushed (or blown) off to the right side of my leg and then the wheel seemed to run over the loose material.

I’m not sure if my pants actually got caught between the frame or not… if it did get caught, I must have pulled it free when I reacted, but I really can’t say for sure if it got caught or not.

I think it may be possible that at high speeds, just the impact of the wheel hitting that much heavy fabric may be enough of a jolt to cause a major disruption, leading to the UPD.

If you’re going to ride around on a Coker with hip-hop pants pulled down to your ankles, what do you expect? Would you wear a long scarf while piloting an open cockpit helicopter?

I would it would be very cold duh and the down draft from a the props would definetly keep the scarf down

i always wear shorts or capris if i can. much easier for me. one time i tried to unicycle in a long bathrobe, but i ran over the bathrobe and nearly killed myself.

no one has ever heard of leg bands?

They definitely are NOT hip-hop pants! “Loose fit” jeans are made by nearly every company that makes jeans and they are looser around the legs only, but not nearly as loose as “hip-hop” pants. Hip-hop pants are loose everywhere and in order to be hip-hop pants, they need to hang off your waist… and “loose fit” jeans DO NOT hang off your waist.

Since we’re on the topic though, I think you’d look pretty spiffy wearing some of those hip-hop pants you describe… along with a long hanging Tommy Hilfiger (or Fubu) shirt and a backwards baseball cap. Many forum members would probably also enjoy seeing you flaunt your new style… so perhaps you can upload a picture of yourself sporting your new look while riding one of your uni’s (at slow speed, for safety sake).

If you want to see Harper’s new look… be sure to encourage him to upload the pic - that would be bad (meaning good… I’m talkin’ hip-hop)!!!

(Scarves aren’t my style!)

I’d have to don the scarf, too. Those threads sound pretty pricey. How about I just pull my pants down, put the baseball cap on at some random angle, and wear a boa?

I’ve seen Seinfeld riding around on his Coker, they aren’t hip hop pants


Now that sounds like the harper I know… adding your own personal flair to it!

Who knows maybe you’ll start a new trend in the hip-hop world???

…and I couldn’t think of a more perfect cover photo for the new “Uni” magazine - that would be much better than that photo they are using of Dan Heaton!

Well, if you send the photo in soon… perhaps you can make the cover of the second edition!

Hey, Andrew. I’m glad you’re still alive. I’ve cautioned ppl about shoelaces for a LONG time now, esp’ly regarding Cokers. As a younger, stupider person, I had to push the eject button a few times while riding smaller-wheel unis when my laces got tangled up in the cranks. Luckily the unis were always short enough that I could hop out the UPD. On a Coker, there would be no forgiveness (unless your lace snapped, as happened to one person in our club – was that you?).

I’ve worn Merrill shoelaceless sneaks since the day my lace got caught in the Coker crank. I’m glad I was only going 2 mph or so – otherwise I’d have had to get braces all over again!

While you’re at it (wearing normal-fit jeans), you might want to cover up that 3" of underwear you’re showing to everyone. :slight_smile:
Just kidding. No functional reason, just aesthetics.

My unicycle riding goes back to the days of wide-bottom jeans (I’m not going to say bellbottom). From your description it sounds like what may have happened was that your lower leg fabric flattened against your leg and the sticking-out part went between frame & wheel, probably on the upstroke. Highest friction would be while your left leg was at the top, leaving you in an awkward position for a dismount.

Yup, like the kids who wear their pants too low, I try to tell them this is a bad idea for unicycling, but usually they need to figure this out for themselves…

Am I Seinfeld? If so, harper must be Kramer! Who is George?

Thanks, David!

Yup, that was me! I had kept the lace wrapped up in my crank as a reminder (until I switched my pedals).

I think surviving nasty UPD’s with minimal suffering (compared to how the UPD could have ended up) may be my greatest talent!

An onlooker, said “Man, you really reacted quick” and seemed to be pretty amazed that it didn’t turn out a lot worse.

A similar reaction occurred a few weeks earlier, when I got taken out by a woman who opened her door as I was passing by (while carrying an umbrella in the rain). She was pretty freaked out… it almost looked like she was in shock! She swore she was always vigilant about looking for cyclists before opening the door and that she couldn’t believe she had done it this time without looking. Amazingly, I didn’t get hurt! The last time that had happened I flew through the air for about 10 ft. like Superman and did get badly bruised up, but that incident could have easily broken bones, so I was pretty lucky.

It’s possible… but it really seemed like the excess fabric got wrapped around the wheel on the down stroke, as it passed in front of the wheel.

I think I’m George :frowning:


I can picture that. A flap of loose fabric near your knee or thigh could fold over the tire and create enough drag to lift your foot off the pedal and/or slow down the wheel enough to lose your balance.

I do know that pants will rub the Coker tire as I’m riding. Depending on your height and crank length, your knee goes up and down right by the tire. I often wear knee pads when I ride the Coker and I have worn a hole in the fabric of the knee pads due to the pads occasionally rubbing on the tire.

I think this calls for some wind tunnel testing where we can study this phenomenon in relative safety.