I’ve been learning to unicycle for a while now, and am beginning to get the hang of it. My first unicycle was some cheap, generic, non-brand 20" that cost less than $100. Now that I’ve become reasonably proficient at riding, I want to move on to a nicer unicycle.
I’m a little overwhelmed at the options on the internet, and have come here for some advice.
I think I need to get a 24", as the seat on my 20" is a little short for my height. It feels a little like riding a tricycle at times when I’m picking up speed and don’t have the seat at max height. I’ve been looking at the Torker Unistar LX 24". Is there anything else I should consider? I don’t want to spend more than $200 at this point (but am willing to spend a little more), and would like to get a more comfortable saddle as well. I still consider myself to be a novice at this point - I don’t need anything super nice! As far as saddles go, I’ve been looking at the Kris Holm Fusion line. Anything else I should look at?
I’m a bit hesitant to move up to a 24", because 20" seems to be the general “does a little bit of everything” size. Should I just get a 20" with a taller seat post?
Long story short:
I need advice on what 24" unicycle to get (or should I stick with a 20"), as well as a comfortable saddle for casual riding, and possibly some trail riding in the future. I’d like to spend less than $200 on the unicycle.
Budget: $200, but still a little flexible
Riding Interest: Casual riding around the neighborhood, possibly venturing into trail riding in the future
Thanks for your help!
You’ll definitely want a 24" or bigger. For your needs, you might consider a 29" like a Drak. You could then do muni on it too.
Keep your 20" for learning tricks and keep riding it to get more and more comfortable, then in a few months get the Drak. A 29 is nice for riding around. You can get places pretty fast, plus it’s small enough to use for trail riding as long as it doesn’t get too steep, rocky or rooty.
I’d say get a 24, but if your main interests are just riding around on non technical surfaces, a 29 will be more fun. It will be harder for you to freemount though. It wasn’t a hard transition for me, but I had been riding for decades before going from a 20/25 to a 29+ wheel.
That being said, if you are going to get into muni with even a chance of rocks, roots and big hills think about a 24 or 26" muni.
It sounds like you aren’t in a mega hurry and used ones show up for sale on this site often enough. It could be worth watching and waiting for a while. One that’s a year or two old and and in good shape but doesn’t have the very latest brake technology or has a steel frame instead of aluminum or something might be in your range. I got one for just a little above that and didn’t dicker at all. (The seller negotiated me down actually.)
I don’t think it’s at all too soon to start getting experience on a different size wheel if you think that’s where you’re headed. It can only help. And you can put a smooth tire on a muni if it turns out that you use it mostly on the street or flat trails. A lighter duty unicycle won’t give you the same options the other way.
The advice you’ve given has been really helpful! I’m planning on spending half my time on streets, casually riding, and the other half on trails. I’m lucky enough to live really close to mountain biking trails that are very well maintained and have great stuff for beginners (though I already have plenty of experience in traditional mountain biking), so I think I’ll start there.
I think I’ll just keep my current unicycle for a while, and continue to master the basics while I shop around for the right cycle.
A 26 might be the way to go. Probably the most versatile for you at this point. A 24 would be a bit too small. A 29 maybe too big.
So, it would be best to get either a 24" or 26" muni (as supposed to a “regular” unicycle) for what I’d be doing? Is a 20" the best to learn new techniques on in the future?
Either one would suit your needs. I went from a 20" to a 26", and it seemed huge by comparison. But I got used to it pretty quickly. After that the 20" seemed small. (Same thing when I got a 36", it seemed huge. Now it seems normal, and the 26" feels small.) You’ll find that any change takes a bit to get used to, but if you learned to ride a uni to begin with, you already know the value of persistent practice.
At 5’10"+, size is not an issue, you could ride any other uni you wanted. It just takes desire and practice.
If you think you will ride street and trail about equally, the 26" might be a better option, since it can do both fairly well. If you do a lot of road riding, you will probably want a bigger wheel after a while. (Shorter cranks help in the meantime.) Watch the “Trading Post” forum – I bought both my 26 and 36 from there.
Good luck, and post some photos!
P.S. Yes, keep the 20" for learning new stuff. Most people do that.
If you want to use a torker lx for light muni it should suit you fine. I really abused the one I had and never had anything break. I would recommend the nimbus gel saddle purchasable here. If you go with the torker lx and want to upgrade the saddle you will also have to buy a new 25.4 seatpost as the torker lx does not come with the standard bolt holes.