I’m looking into buying a new 36" unicycle and I can’t find any definitive info on what to get. The Kris Holm and Nimbus Oracle seem best but are out of my price range ($600 tops, ideally under $500). Beyond that I’ve only really found the Titan and Taobao’s Knight. The Taobao seems nice but I’d have to ship from China (I’m in the States) so I would like to know if I’m buying a good product first. I also keep seeing people with Nightriders but don’t see anywhere to buy them in the US. Does anyone have any advice? Am I missing cheaper or better options?
I want a uni that will last a few years for commuting a few miles every day, if that helps. I’d also like to not end up spending so much money on upgrades that I should have bought a better uni in the first place :p.
The nightrider was a previous Nimbus model and isn’t being made anymore. The Titan is perfectly fine for what you want to do. I’ve never heard of the Taobao Knight, for what that’s worth. There’s also the coker big one that’s within your price range. I would also keep an eye out for used cycles. ISIS is the preferred method for attaching cranks, but you can still get venture cranks with a square tapered interface. A wheel with an ISIS hub and cranks is going to be considerably more expensive though. Qu Ax makes a few 36ers, but they have a weird hub, proprietary interface, and are hard to get in the US without expensive shipping across borders. The only wheel I would steer clear of is the nightfox, unless you need it. You can’t change the handlebar, it’s a multi-piece frame, and you have no saddle tilt adjustment, though it’s tempting what you get at that price point.
My 36er was my first unicycle, and though it initially cost around $700, I have had it for 7 years and it’s still my main unicycle, and my favorite. : ) If you find one calling to you, and it’s out of your price range, I really would wait and get what you want when you have the money, but the Titan would be my vote if you wanted to get one now.
The titan has a great rim and tire (though no longer has eyelets I believe), and it’s 36 spoke as opposed to 48, so it’s lighter. I would highly encourage you to upgrade to the venture cranks and possibly a KH street saddle, but that’s more of a preference thing. A handlebar is also something to think about, and for the titan, or a beginner, I would go with the coker pi bar. It’s heavy, but it’s bomb-proof and cheap. I wouldn’t worry about a brake, I’ve never ridden road with them unless I’m on the geared one. Take everything I’m saying with a grain of salt here. Only you really know what your priorities are. : ) Keep in mind that later on you may want a couple of tools, maybe different pedals, etc. that add to the cost.
I would be patient and try to get a high end 36 used, though it may be expensive to ship. A lot of people try them and give up on them after a little use.
I have the Oracle 36 and it rocks. Very light and responsive. I have never tried a KH36 but I am sure it is just as good. I do like the rounded Oracle crown on a 36 and at the time I preferred inboard disc rotor.
For my new muni (KH27.5) I went with KH (outboard rotor) because I want the option of some day putting on a geared hub.