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Old 2017-11-10, 04:38 PM   #16
TMason
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Thanks for all the replies guys....but... I was sure hoping someone would post "Just get more saddle time and in a few months you won't even notice road camber" :-)

But then again, after being an avid cyclist for years I guess the challenge of these things while out riding is what is keeping me so engaged with unicycling. My bikes now have flat tires and are gathering dust.

Todd
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Old 2017-11-11, 05:54 AM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TMason View Post
I've read past threads about tire pressure and I've tried air pressures from 35 to 65 and nothing seems to make it comfortable.
I probably ride with less than 35lbs, and softer seems less sensitive to camber.
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Originally Posted by JimT View Post
Your Nimbus Nightrider tire has a quite a square profile. My Coker Non-Skid tire has a totally round profile so I'm on the opposite end of the scale. It is not effected at all by road camber but it does not turn small circles nearly as well as a more square profiled tire. I'm thinking that the more square profiled tire is more effective at slight changes in direction by just shifting the hips to the left or right but I don't know that for sure.
I think tire shape is a factor, but I know "roadies" who use all different tires and seem to have conquered the camber problem. I haven't ridden the Coker Non-Skid, but the old Button tire was better on camber (though worse on wear).
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Originally Posted by JimT View Post
I wonder if you could add some ballast weight on the left side of the frame or someplace on your person?
That weight would be the actual rider. No sense adding extra, non-functional weight, especially if the camber is going to move around (like on my local bike path).
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Originally Posted by UPD View Post
Here is what helps for me..
Slightly lowering psi,
lowering saddle so your torso can angle properly to the road,
Practice riding with arms behind back on flat roads with or without camber. It squares out my upper and forces me to use hips more for control.
I think those are good, though the hands-behind-back thing can also be practiced by using both hands on a handlebar if you have one.
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Originally Posted by JimT View Post
Early 1900's automobile non-skid tires did have a NON-SKID tread. The so called Coker non-skid tires have COKER in the tread.
For those not familiar with the Coker company, they make tires, including lots of specialty ones for antique cars. Their button tread is a classic design that can be seen on old cars in museums, probably all around the world!
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Originally Posted by grizbach View Post
If all you are doing is riding the camber, I would slightly twist my seat TOWARDS the direction it is being pulled. This points the frame/tire to the desired direction.
That can also work, but you may have to adjust if the camber switches sides or intensity. Just a slight twist of the seat, not more than 5 degrees or so.
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Originally Posted by TMason View Post
....but... I was sure hoping someone would post "Just get more saddle time and in a few months you won't even notice road camber" :-)
Of course. and what did those riders do during those few months? Probably variations on the above. I think that what works best for me is leaning into it, as described above. It also seems to help me by pushing down/forward on the handle I need to turn toward. Presumably this has a countersteering effect; pushing left handle forward pushing bottom of tire to the right, which puts the uni into a left lean.
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Old 2017-11-11, 11:08 AM   #18
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Originally Posted by Canoeheadted View Post
If it slopes down to the left then I would pull left hand and push with the right. Causing a counter-clockwise force on the handlebars.
Best advice I've ever read for camber!
I went for a ride shortly after reading it and put it to practice. I love it. I didn't quite remember which way I should twist the bars so I experimented and quickly understood that it's a natural way to point the shoulders in a direction (twisting clockwise made my upper torso turn to the left) or in the other (twisting ccwise pointed my shoulders to the right). Which also helped me figure out the best use of bars when turning, something I had not quite worked out - honestly, why would one twist the bars to turn, especially after years of biking/motorcycling!

I think I ended up doing the opposite of Canoeheadted's suggestion - on a camber to the right, I would push down the right bar whilst pulling up the left, effectively making my torso turn left, against the slope then. Made sense to me as the slope would want to drag me to the right.
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Old 2018-02-08, 09:56 PM   #19
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After seeing a post from earlier today about twisting the seat for road camber I thought I would give an update on this thread I started back in November when cambered roads were kicking my butt.

Joe Myers (bundeejoe) has been a huge help to me in my understanding what is happening. As a professional engineer, it made sense to me but it has just been taking a while for me to get used to it.

There has been discussion of which way the wheel wants to turn, up the slope or down the slope? The wheel wants to turn up the slope and yes I understand some disagree but read on to see why it feels that way.

As Joe pointed out, the wheel will turn towards which ever angle it is leaning (and this is the important part) from a line perpendicular to the surface. So if you have the wheel straight up and down on a slope, it wants to turn up the slope. The trick is to get the wheel as perpendicular with the slope as possible so it doesn't want to turn upwards.

..OR....

Wheel turns up the slope, next pedal stroke you turn it down the slope which ends up being a cat and mouse game but it works. The people who twist the seat make this easier.

I'm still relatively new at unicycling and I can turn left a lot better than right. Tight left turns no problem. It hasn't been the same for me turning right. Heck I used to feel like I was twisted 90 degrees on the seat to the right and the unicycle would still go left! So for me, camber roads sloping down to the left was easier because the wheel wanted to the climb slope to the right and each stroke I would correct it to the left without much thought. Cambers to the right were impossible. I'd end up all twisted and UPD.

----------------------

Back to getting the wheel perpendicular to the surface. Lets say the camber slopes down to the right. You have to get the unicycle seat, and therefore your hips to the right. For me it is easier for me to just think to lean my shoulders left which makes my hips go right. I believe this leaning uphill is why some believe the wheel wants to turn down the hill. After all you are leaning left and on flat ground leaning left makes you turn left. In this case, your hips are just to the right to make the wheel more perpendicular to the surface. And just when you think oh that's easy enough you find out if you lean too far left, suddenly your center of gravity is not over the wheel contact point and the wheel will turn left! Exactly what you were trying to get it not to do. Hey but isn't that really the fun of unicycling?

I attached a couple pictures I took while out on my lunchtime ride today on a tight 50 mph corner that has lots of camber. You will notice that when going away from the camera with it sloped to the left, I'm not leaned over as much. As mentioned above, I can correct the right turning tendency easily. With the picture of me coming at the camera, the camber is to the right. I have to lean the unicycle a lot more because I'm not as fluid in making the needed correcting right turn. It should end up being a nice combination of the two...with practice!! Can't wait!

Regards,

Todd Mason
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Old 2018-02-09, 03:21 AM   #20
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Great explanation with photo backup Todd.
Can definitely see what your explaining!
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Old 2018-02-09, 11:43 AM   #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TMason View Post

I attached a couple pictures I took while out on my lunchtime ride today on a tight 50 mph corner that has lots of camber. You will notice that when going away from the camera with it sloped to the left, I'm not leaned over as much. As mentioned above, I can correct the right turning tendency easily. With the picture of me coming at the camera, the camber is to the right. I have to lean the unicycle a lot more because I'm not as fluid in making the needed correcting right turn.
Yeah, yesterday I rode on a cycle path which also had a lot of camber to the right, and I sat just like you and after a few hundred metres I was so twisted, I UPD'd. Since it was a one-way cyclepath, I decided to ride all the way at the top on the left at the edge, where the path was evening off. Cyclists passed me from my right without complaints. It is not often I ride with camber and won't choose that section again.
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Old 2018-02-10, 05:27 AM   #22
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Originally Posted by Danny Colyer View Post
I'll second JimT, in that I've always found round profile tyres to be much easier than square profile to ride on cambers.
I disagree. In my experience, it's the other way around, round tyres are worse on camber than squarer profile tyres. I recently experimented with rim width: a large volume tyre on a skinny rim (which creates a round profile), and the same tyre on a wide rim (to create a squarer profile), and I've found the latter performs slightly better.

The other big factor is tyre pressure- too low pressure and the tyre becomes unrideable on camber.

My conclusion is that it has to do with tyre deformation. In order to go where you want to go, the tyre must keep the same shape. If the tyre changes shape, it will change the intended direction. If you are riding on a flat, uncambered surface, the tyre deformation is symmetrical, so it keeps going in the same direction, which is why you only notice low pressure on camber.

In terms of tyre- camber performance doesn't correlate well with tyre profile, although I think squarer tyres work slightly better. The main factor for tyre performance is sidewall stiffness. I've experimented with the same tyre (Schwalbe Big One) as tubeless, as well as tubed. The tubeless required higher pressure to perform on camber, being less stiff and more prone to deformation.

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Old 2018-02-10, 06:41 AM   #23
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Originally Posted by GizmoDuck View Post
I disagree. In my experience, it's the other way around, round tyres are worse on camber than squarer profile tyres. I recently experimented with rim width: a large volume tyre on a skinny rim (which creates a round profile), and the same tyre on a wide rim (to create a squarer profile), and I've found the latter performs slightly better.

The other big factor is tyre pressure- too low pressure and the tyre becomes unrideable on camber.

My conclusion is that it has to do with tyre deformation. In order to go where you want to go, the tyre must keep the same shape. If the tyre changes shape, it will change the intended direction. If you are riding on a flat, uncambered surface, the tyre deformation is symmetrical, so it keeps going in the same direction, which is why you only notice low pressure on camber.

In terms of tyre- camber performance doesn't correlate well with tyre profile, although I think squarer tyres work slightly better. The main factor for tyre performance is sidewall stiffness. I've experimented with the same tyre (Schwalbe Big One) as tubeless, as well as tubed. The tubeless required higher pressure to perform on camber, being less stiff and more prone to deformation.
GizmoDuck,
I have converted from my over simplified observation that rounder tires are better on camber and square tires are bad on camber. In one case that is true, a Coker non-skid totally round profiled tire is not effected by camber and Nightrider more square tire is quite bad on road camber. However the shape of the tire does not seem to be the whole story or maybe not any of the story. It seems to be much more complicated then that.

In this thread: http://www.unicyclist.com/forums/sho...=120922&page=4
OneTrackMind posted some observations and suggested that more study would be needed to better understand the issue.

Of course the other side of the whole issue is that a tire that is not effected by camber also can not make smooth turns just by leaning into the turn. And vice versa, a tire that is effected by camber can make nice smooth turns just by leaning into the turn.

Jim
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Old 2018-02-10, 11:34 PM   #24
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JimT View Post
GizmoDuck,
I have converted from my over simplified observation that rounder tires are better on camber and square tires are bad on camber. In one case that is true, a Coker non-skid totally round profiled tire is not effected by camber and Nightrider more square tire is quite bad on road camber. However the shape of the tire does not seem to be the whole story or maybe not any of the story. It seems to be much more complicated then that.
Another reason I think square profile is slightly better on camber was from an experiment with my Nightrider tyre. I shaved off the side knobs (saves about 200g), but also creates a rounder profile. The tyre went from performing badly on camber, to performing even worse on camber.


Quote:
Originally Posted by JimT View Post

In this thread: http://www.unicyclist.com/forums/sho...=120922&page=4
OneTrackMind posted some observations and suggested that more study would be needed to better understand the issue.

Of course the other side of the whole issue is that a tire that is not effected by camber also can not make smooth turns just by leaning into the turn. And vice versa, a tire that is effected by camber can make nice smooth turns just by leaning into the turn.

Jim
I've not had that issue with turns.

In terms of camber it's summed up well in the other thread, I agree that sidewall stiffness plays a part.

My idea that it is based on tyre deformation is based on:

- tyres at low pressure perform worse on camber than the same tyre at higher pressure
- stiffer tyres work better (eg tubeless vs same tyre tubed)
- big volume tyres (eg Schwalbe Big Apple) are worse on camber than skinny tyres. You will find various threads where people complain about the camber performance of the Schwalbe Big Apple 2.35, but claim that the smaller Big Apple 2.0 works fine.
Bigger volume = more air = more squishability/deformation.

In terms of tyre shape (square vs round), I think that may play a part in how stiff the tyre is, and/or the way it deforms. In my Nightrider example above, the knobs are quite hard, so there is less deformation which means the contact point with the road does not change as much.

Last edited by GizmoDuck; 2018-02-10 at 11:46 PM.
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Old 2018-02-10, 11:54 PM   #25
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Body position for traverses and cambered

Quote:
Originally Posted by TMason View Post

I'm still relatively new at unicycling and I can turn left a lot better than right. Tight left turns no problem. It hasn't been the same for me turning right. Heck I used to feel like I was twisted 90 degrees on the seat to the right and the unicycle would still go left! So for me, camber roads sloping down to the left was easier because the wheel wanted to the climb slope to the right and each stroke I would correct it to the left without much thought. Cambers to the right were impossible. I'd end up all twisted and UPD.

----------------------

Back to getting the wheel perpendicular to the surface. Lets say the camber slopes down to the right. You have to get the unicycle SEAT, and therefore your hips to the right. For me it is easier for me to just think to lean my shoulders left which makes my hips go right. I believe this leaning uphill is why some believe the wheel wants to turn down the hill. After all you are leaning left and on flat ground leaning left makes you turn left. In this case, your hips are just to the right to make the wheel more perpendicular to the surface. And just when you think oh that's easy enough you find out if you lean too far left, suddenly your center of gravity is not over the wheel contact point and the wheel will turn left! Exactly what you were trying to get it not to do. Hey but isn't that really the fun of unicycling?

I attached a couple pictures I took while out on my lunchtime ride today on a tight 50 mph corner that has lots of camber. You will notice that when going away from the camera with it sloped to the left, I'm not leaned over as much. As mentioned above, I can correct the right turning tendency easily. With the picture of me coming at the camera, the camber is to the right. I have to lean the unicycle a lot more because I'm not as fluid in making the needed correcting right turn. It should end up being a nice combination of the two...with practice!! Can't wait!

Regards,

Todd Mason
Everybody but Todd: ignore everything that I post.

Todd:

You’re making GREAT progress.

As we’ve discussed, moving the SEAT as far over as possible against the inside leg/inner thigh will facilitate an additional few degrees of tilting the wheel over into a turn requiring less pronounced shoulder lean to compensate for balance over the center of gravity adjusted due to centrifugal turning forces (slide / slip - keeping the bubble or ball centered when flying).

Looking at your two photos, your SEAT appears to be against the outside leg/inner thigh. This requires your leg—hips—shoulder angle to become increasingly pronounced. This is a common tendency.

At least at first, you may need to mentally think your way through my preferred method (not necessarily the correct method of others) of both turning and riding traverses (camber):

1) Put the hand on the outside of the turn (or high side of the traverse/camber) on the front seat handle (and use to control brake application if applicable).

2) Raise up slightly, unweighting the seat.

3) Move/slide the seat over against the leg/inner thigh of the leg on the inside of the turn (downhill side of the traverse/camber).

4) Extend the hand/arm on the inside of the turn (downhill side of traverse/camber) as needed to maintain balance or as needed to off balance into the turn increasing turn rate (using the extended/retracted weight of your arm like an aileron).

5) Retract your inside hand/arm back in toward your body and grip your outside hand which should still be on top of the front of the saddle gripping the handle (and controlling brake application if applicable).
As a side note this two hand placement becomes increasingly important to me as riding distance between dismounts increases. I’ll raise/lift up out of the saddle placing most or all of weight on these hands with my arms/inside of my elbows locked against my rib cage (for stability) and spin along for 40 or 50 seconds every mile at up to 120+ cadence letting fresh blood flow into my seat area parts and give seat area a short break out of the saddle.

This method of riding I perfected spinning on stationary exercise Greg LeMond trainers and unicycling on rollers a dozen years ago training for the STP.
6) Adjust using inside arm position (downhill arm position on traverse/camber) as necessary for changing circumstances or as turn completion is reached.

I’m reposting your pictures and a recent one of me for you to compare.

Please note that my spine is close to vertical and shoulders are close to level. I’ll turn street corner and make sharp turns in this same body attitude/alignment.

Many will first claim there is no room to move their seat over. I’m a small man with narrow hips and I can. I’m only talking about a minor adjustment. Your pictures seem to reveal room for a minor adjustment. If your seat is adjusted in the wrong direction this will compound turning issues. When turning the opposite direction as the adjustment like in the picture facing the camera notice the required legs—hips—shoulder angle it requires you to make the same turn on the same camber. See how the shoulders are not level, the spine is no longer vertical, and the body is twisted.

Riding camber on a unicycle is a skill. I almost never ride anything that is truly flat. I feel sorry for anyone limiting oneself to truly flat riding—it would remove unicycling everywhere I go—sacrifice most, if not all what I enjoy about unicycling.

I learned how to ride in the steets and was making road trips before I ever learned to self mount.

As you try these body/unicycle position adjustments and if my method might work for you, I’m hopping it will open great new opportunities of enjoyment for your riding pleasure.

Continue having fun,
Joe
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Old 2018-02-11, 06:15 AM   #26
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ignore everything that I post
I'm not as much as a camber fan as you, so I decided to ignore what you posted by not ignoring what you posted.

My ride today included plenty of odd camber situations (sometimes just steeply banked turns, sometimes off-camber turns on dirt roads while climbing/descending etc) and I paid attention to how I tackled them. I found that I more or less follow your technique, even though I haven't really given it much thought.

So... good advice .
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Old 2018-02-11, 06:15 PM   #27
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Bungeejoe, Thanks once again for all the valuable input.

I finally got around to uploading the video that I took the couple screen shots from. It might tell more of the tale on why I fight right camber more than left.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_0LJLmkc1oQ
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Old 2018-02-12, 10:09 PM   #28
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Originally Posted by GizmoDuck View Post
I disagree. In my experience, it's the other way around, round tyres are worse on camber than squarer profile tyres. I recently experimented with rim width: a large volume tyre on a skinny rim (which creates a round profile), and the same tyre on a wide rim (to create a squarer profile), and I've found the latter performs slightly better.

The other big factor is tyre pressure- too low pressure and the tyre becomes unrideable on camber.

My conclusion is that it has to do with tyre deformation.
You may very well be right. On reflection I realise that the one tyre that's given me real problems on a cambered path also happens to be by far the lowest pressure tyre that I've used on-road. Strangely I hadn't given much thought to the effect of tyre pressure.

My gut still says that a round tyre ought to be better on a camber than trying to ride on the corner of a square tyre. But I haven't done the kind of tests that would be needed to confirm that (nor have I done anything like the kind of mileage that you have), and it certainly seems reasonable that tyre deformation would have a greater effect than tyre profile.
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Old 2018-02-12, 11:04 PM   #29
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For what it is worth, I still find the rounder Nightrider lite way less camber sensitive than the KG, or even the former Nightrider which was more squarish.
I did not notice any issue to turn by leaning toward the inside.

My very first unicycle had a kenda nevegal 26x2.7 very squarish tire, I inflated it to its max and it was horrible, I was twisted all the time.

I think the best is thin and round, with a lot of air.
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Old 2018-02-13, 09:16 AM   #30
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In my experience, a round tyre on a narrow rim is the less sensitive. My 29" has a Schwalbe Big One, it's a 2.35" tire - so fairly big for a road tire. It hardly has any knobs (which is why it gets a flat per month, but that's an other story).
I rode it for a long time on a KH 29" rim, with is what, 52mm wide if not more? It was pretty sensitive to camber. Not as bad as the Schwalbe Big Apple I had for a while, but close. When I got my new hub, I built it into a road rim, 25mm wide. It's day and night on camber, it handles it so much better. The tire is more "pointy" and round - it actually looks smaller than when it was spread on a wide rim.
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