What size uni to start on?

My 13 year old daughter and an 11 year old nephew are learning to ride. I’ve learned on a 24’ uni and that’s all I’ve ever been on. I bought a 20" uni for my daughters, but have never ridden it, fearing I would blow out the tire. Which one do you recommend for the kids to learn on?

Thanks in advance.

I would definitely recommend the 20" for your daughters assuming that it is of decent quality, because 20" is the best size to learn on, even for adults. Proof. Longer proof.

Why are you afraid of blowing out the tyre? Lots of adults happily ride 20" unis. Unless you’re exceptionally heavy or the unicycle is crappy. Any regular 20" will do. Now that you have one, why don’t you try?

Edit: and welcome to the forums!

I’d recommend this unicycle as the perfect starter/learner machine my friend. :smiley:

Check your PM too also. :wink:

I weigh 240 lbs. and not sure if I need a “special” tube or tire to be able to inflate the tire where I don’t “flatten” it. My nephew who weighs 170 lbs. actually blew out the tube this weekend. Will be looking for a replacement. I was afraid I would blow it out and my daughter wouldn’t have one to ride…

Thanks for the reply, this site looks really cool.

If you weigh 240 lb, you are probably too heavy for the light-duty kids unicycles like Torker CX series. You might be fine on the Torker LX series. UDC has some special adult unicycles that might be better. Here is one they recommend for BIG new users:


Given the cost of that one I would probably just try one of the solidly built Nimbus unicycles:


They also carry 20", but 24" is more fun to ride around on. With a typical cadence, 20" goes at a walking pace and 24" goes at a jogging pace.

Eek, to what pressure did you have it inflated?

I second that. I’m about your (tfpoke’s) size, and my Nimbus has been great! Worth every penny.
Disclaimer: I mainly do road riding, with a little mild offroad, so the worst drops I see are curbs, gutters, and tree roots.

a 20" should be perfect for you daughter and nephew to learn on. I wouldn’t worry about breaking it just riding around yourself even if you weigh 240 lbs, just don’t hop on it or take it off any curbs etc.

How did your nephew blow out the tube? If it went BANG then somehow the tube got out of the tire, usually from the tire coming partially off the rim. Usually this happens if the tire was not properly centered on the rim and has little to do with rider weight.

2nd that. Tyres very rarely go pop just because of weight. Usually there is some other fault (over inflated, not seated, torn wall). I’ve ridden mine around with someone on my shoulders.

Thanks for the reply. What pressures do you guys run in your tires? I think I had a tire/tube at one time that was good to 65 psi. My 24" Schwinn has held up well over the past 20 years. Think I bent my pedals going down stairs once or twice. The frame on the 20" one I have isn’t real “beefy”.

Guy here in town has a Cycle Pro 24" uni for sale. You think that would work ok for my daughter? Looks like it’s on the cheaper end of the spectrum.

With this question you’re bound to get replies that relate to trials and MUni. I think you’re after tyre pressure for general riding around which is a totally different game. I’d say the maximum that your tyre is rated. Common wisdom amongst unicyclists is in fact to go somewhat over the rated pressure, like 20 - 30% more.

I thought you had bought a 20" for her?

Sorry for any confusion. I bought a 20" for her, and took it home this weekend to let my nephew try it. Now he wants one, and looking to buy one for him. My daughter has ridden my 24" some and also the 20". A guy here had a 20" cycle pro listed that turned out to be a 24"… He claimed it was a $200 uni that he bought used, I found it online for $60 new. Is this clear now or what ? :smiley:

Thanks for the reply on the tire pressure. I’ll try to make it to a bike store this week and look at tires & tubes.

Your part of the story is now clear, but not what this guy is saying. Doesn’t seem very reliable.

Now whether a 24" is OK for your daughter or a 20" depends on what she wants to do. Going for rides with you: same wheelsize is better. And for covering any distance, 24" is better than 20" anyway. However, for practicing all kinds of skills: 20" is better. For learning (which is her first task): 20" is better. I think I would buy her a new 20" if I were you. If need be, you can sell it through Ebay or the like with maybe 20 euros/dollars loss (I don’t know where you are).

Additional remark as to tyre pressure: for light persons, like most kids, tyre pressure can be at or even below rated pressure, even if for learning or just riding around. Having said that, for these purposes the tyre should still definitely be “firm”.

I’m in Austin, Texas and thanks for the advice. Cool to find so many people with a passion for their “hobby”. You guys make me want to go ride…:smiley:
If I can find some used unis, I might just get one of each to have for my kids.

I’d never heard of a 36" uni before, looking at the pics, I’d like to try one out.

Thanks again.