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Riding on the beach

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  • Riding on the beach

    What damage if any, does riding on sand do to a unicycle?
    Obviously we are lucky enough not to have a chain and cogs to worry about, but I was thinking of bearings etc.
    Also, how do you clean your uni after such a ride?
    ______________________
    Nimbus II 20"
    Oracle 24"

  • #2
    Salt water will get everywhere and is corrosive.

    Corrosion between steel bolts and aluminium alloy will cause the two metals to "weld" together.

    Sand may get into bearings.

    I have ridden on beaches. It can be fun, and it can be hard work.

    I woudl avoid the temptation to ride through even very shallow patches of saltwater.

    You would need to clean your unicycle thoroughly with lots of fresh water, and possibly strip, clean, dry, grease and reassemble some parts, afterwards.
    My first novel, Bridge of Otherwhere, Michael Wilkinson, on Kindle. A tale of subtle magic, mystery, friendship and love. Tinyurl.com/Bridge-of-Otherwhere For US$ page: TinyURL.com/OtherwhereBridge

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    • #3
      Short answer: Depends on the sand, and how you're riding on it. Here's the #1 example of how not to ride on sand. Sorry the pictures are so tiny; that page is ancient. On my list of stuff I may eventually get to.

      Those sand dunes had us riding with our wheels half submerged. Pedals and wheel bearings were affected. But at least it was relatively salt-free sand. Get down closer to the water and there's more of a corrosion effect, but hosing off the unicycle mostly takes care of that. Then again, you don't want to blast water into your bearings.

      I've also ridden on lahar, which is a mixture of fine sand and volcanic ash. That stuff gets into everything! Coarse sand is much less of a problem. Desert sand, like in Moab, UT, doesn't seem to have much of an effect, unless it's driven by the wind, again into your bearings.
      John Foss
      www.unicycling.com

      "Who is going to argue with a mom who can ride a unicycle?" -- Forums member "HiMo"

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      • #4
        Apart from the where, it also depends on how much. I rode my uni on the beach a couple of time when on holiday in Devon, riding on the hard sand below high tide level, but keeping away from any water. Didn't get much sand or salt-water near anything imporant, and it doesn't seem to have done it any harm at all.
        Unicycling: great for your thighs.

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        • #5
          I regularly ride on the beaches of South West Wales.

          It's great fun riding through the water as it rolls up the beach.

          I always hose off the uni with plain water as soon as I get home & have had no problems with rust/corrosion (Yet!)

          On a regular basis, I polish my unis with good quality polish, which seems to protect them well.

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          • #6
            I've been riding the beaches here in North Carolina occasionally for the past few years and simply hose off afterwards. The day I got my Oregan it's the first place I went. Very fun but challenging. Another local rider put 170 cranks on his 36 er and cruised pretty good at low tide. Looking forward to trying that.
            -James

            I love...big rides, gravel, beach, road, xc single track, cyclocross, racing against bikes and I'm a proud 36er snob!

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