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Old 2015-05-30, 01:03 PM   #1
janvanhulzen
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Road camber solutions

Hi,

i have a 26" KH with a maxxis High Roller tire and ride about 8km to and from a spot where i ride off road. I run the tire at relatively low pressure to increase stability during off road riding. During the road stretches i noticed that the high roller is very sensitive to road camber. I can ride some stretches on the middle of the road to avoid this but this is not always possible.

I have found a lot of information on the site on camber problems but most of the information is about 36" tires and was wondering which tire performs well for the 26 inch?

Another solution would be to mod the tire. Has anyone considered this Perhaps by removing small top parts of the outer profile/knobs or by stiffening on one side by including something in the tire?
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Old 2015-05-30, 01:16 PM   #2
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A 26" shouldn't be too prone to camber. Have you considered a very small pump so that you can ride on the road at a much higher pressure?
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Old 2015-05-30, 06:17 PM   #3
Danny Colyer
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A round profile tyre will handle cambers better than a square profile tyre, you'll probably also find that slicks handle better than knobblies. Higher pressure also helps.

FWIW with a Big Apple on my 26" I barely notice cambers that are extremely uncomfortable to ride on the same wheel fitted with a Gazzaloddi.

Unfortunately, a good off-road tyre is never likely to give a comfortable ride on a road camber.
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Old 2015-05-31, 09:47 AM   #4
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I ride mine with 2.3 bar (=33 PSI), below this it’s not easy to control and upper this it's uncomfortable (I'm 75kg = 165 lb)
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Old 2015-05-31, 11:38 AM   #5
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the Hans Dampf isn't terrible for road camber, a fair bit better than the HR2.7 ime.
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Old 2015-06-01, 06:29 PM   #6
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Since you have such a long ride to the trail, you might consider a more dual-purpose tire. I like the Maxxis Holy Roller for this. It's pretty good at both, while admittedly not the best at either. Just a suggestion.
The suggestion to carry a small pump is really a good one also. Low tire pressure on pavement with a grippy tire makes for really difficult riding.
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Old 2016-10-24, 04:03 PM   #7
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There have been many threads on the uni forum and elsewhere about road camber, and how it can pull the rider to one side or the other, including trails. I could never really gleen a consensus as to why this happens and/or how to solve it. Suggestions ranged from tire type, psi, saddle height, wheel dishing, favoring one side over the other, not having enough riding experience, and so on.

On the new trail that I've been riding with my G26er, I found myself fighting unbelievably hard against the downward slope, either to the right or left, of certain trail sections, and I was literally pulling so hard in the other direction to stay upright that it was taking all the fun out of the ride. The next day I decided to take my KH29er, which has a *round* profile Continental Race King 2.2 tire, which I had been using on the road.

I had been running about 60 psi and forgot to take some air out for the trail ride. Well, on the same sections where I had been fighting camber pull on the G26er, there was ZERO pull with this uni! It was a total joy not to have to fight to stay upright. I wondered if it was because of the tire profile being round or the higher psi, or a combo of both. On my G26er I run a maxxis ardent 2.25, which has a max psi rating of 65. It also has a more square profile, especially when running a lower psi for trail riding.

I theorized that where I had always been running it (at around 30-35 psi,) the footprint became so flat and square that that was what was throwing me in the direction of the side tilt of those trail sections, where the round profile of the 29er was apparently not subject to the pull of the slope. So I raised the psi of the G26er tire to a bit over 50, which kept the profile of the ardent rounder. The result was nothing short of dramatic!

There was suddenly ZERO pull no matter how much side slope I rode! I had never thought of running such a high psi on any MUni, thinking traction would be affected as well as making it harder to roll over stuff. To my surprise, this was not the case and in fact the ride was smoother and faster than ever. So, at least in my case, the camber issue was solved simply by increasing psi enough to keep the tire's profile from becoming too flat/square. Of course, there are some tires that will still be affected by camber regardless of psi, mostly due to the profile being super square, tread design, or super fat tires, which can cause "auto steer" issues.
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Old 2016-10-24, 07:17 PM   #8
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Camber is weird and challenging.

I recently realized that, while I can ride on camber which slopes down from right to left with no problem, riding camber that slopes down from left to right is currently a major struggle. I know all factors are equal too, because my current practice for this involves finding a section of trail or road with strong camber, and then riding it in both directions back and forth.

I think this is a result of my initially learning to ride on city sidewalks, which typically slope from right to left on the right side of the road. While it is frustrating and currently a major challenge, its nice to finally understand why certain section of trail are more challenging than other, seemingly similar, sections.
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Old 2016-10-24, 08:10 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Geolojas View Post
Camber is weird and challenging.

I recently realized that, while I can ride on camber which slopes down from right to left with no problem, riding camber that slopes down from left to right is currently a major struggle.
Sounds like you're right footed and naturally use more force on your right foot. That has the effect of tugging the wheel (direction) to the right, and countering the camber. . . at least that's how it feels for me. When I'm riding on a camber I shift more of the weight (as opposed to "floating" over the pedals, and picking your foot up on the backstroke if that makes sense) to whatever foot is on the high side of the camber and that seems to help.

I've also felt what Terry described above. I usually run my 36er at 55-60 psi and after a few thousand miles had worn down the middle of the tire more than the edges and squared off the profile. Got a new nightrider with a round profile and camber was again easy to deal with or entirely unnoticeable.
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Old 2016-10-24, 09:03 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by juggleaddict View Post
Sounds like you're right footed and naturally use more force on your right foot. That has the effect of tugging the wheel (direction) to the right, and countering the camber. . . at least that's how it feels for me. When I'm riding on a camber I shift more of the weight (as opposed to "floating" over the pedals, and picking your foot up on the backstroke if that makes sense) to whatever foot is on the high side of the camber and that seems to help.
I never thought about it in these terms, but I suspect you are right. Now I'm looking forward to my next ride where I can try out your suggestion. I have high hopes, because I have noticed a tendency for my uni to pull right in other instances as well.

Frankly, this is one reason I love riding off road. I'm almost always off balance in some way which makes this problem less noticeable.
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Old 2016-10-24, 09:37 PM   #11
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More air, less square!
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Old 2016-10-25, 08:55 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Geolojas View Post
Frankly, this is one reason I love riding off road. I'm almost always off balance in some way which makes this problem less noticeable.
Here too!
I'm definitely right footed and I do know that I use it more than the other one (pain in the right knee and problem with left to right camber).
I spent a year or more only doing trails and the first time I went on asphalt was hell! The other thing with muni is that you can have more weight on the pedals without it being a real problem.
I've been fighting against all the bad habits I got from muni-only for about a year now. Things that are anchored in your body don't come off easily!
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Old 2016-10-25, 08:24 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MuniAddict View Post
There have been many threads on the uni forum and elsewhere about road camber, and how it can pull the rider to one side or the other, including trails. I could never really gleen a consensus as to why this happens and/or how to solve it. Suggestions ranged from tire type, psi, saddle height, wheel dishing, favoring one side over the other, not having enough riding experience, and so on.

On the new trail that I've been riding with my G26er, I found myself fighting unbelievably hard against the downward slope, either to the right or left, of certain trail sections, and I was literally pulling so hard in the other direction to stay upright that it was taking all the fun out of the ride. The next day I decided to take my KH29er, which has a *round* profile Continental Race King 2.2 tire, which I had been using on the road.

I had been running about 60 psi and forgot to take some air out for the trail ride. Well, on the same sections where I had been fighting camber pull on the G26er, there was ZERO pull with this uni! It was a total joy not to have to fight to stay upright. I wondered if it was because of the tire profile being round or the higher psi, or a combo of both. On my G26er I run a maxxis ardent 2.25, which has a max psi rating of 65. It also has a more square profile, especially when running a lower psi for trail riding.

I theorized that where I had always been running it (at around 30-35 psi,) the footprint became so flat and square that that was what was throwing me in the direction of the side tilt of those trail sections, where the round profile of the 29er was apparently not subject to the pull of the slope. So I raised the psi of the G26er tire to a bit over 50, which kept the profile of the ardent rounder. The result was nothing short of dramatic!

There was suddenly ZERO pull no matter how much side slope I rode! I had never thought of running such a high psi on any MUni, thinking traction would be affected as well as making it harder to roll over stuff. To my surprise, this was not the case and in fact the ride was smoother and faster than ever. So, at least in my case, the camber issue was solved simply by increasing psi enough to keep the tire's profile from becoming too flat/square. Of course, there are some tires that will still be affected by camber regardless of psi, mostly due to the profile being super square, tread design, or super fat tires, which can cause "auto steer" issues.
That's very interesting. Dealing with camber is a pain, it really wears you out, and for me has a lot to do with the tire I'm using. Oddly enough, the best tire I have for dealing with camber on any surface is a Duro Wildlife Leopard, even on concrete at lower pressures like 25-30 psi. I have really worn that tire down, and that might have something to do with it. I seem to remember it not handling camber very well when it was new.


I have noticed that the Nightrider tire on my 36er does better on camber with higher pressure. I upped it from 52 psi to closer to 60 psi, and that made all the difference in the world. It's a much better all around ride with the higher pressure.

That's really cool that you found a good solution for camber. It's always good to experiment with tire pressure!
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Old 2019-04-23, 10:41 AM   #14
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I made an interesting observation tonight while crossing a couple of steep driveways that produce short but extreme camber.

These twin driveways have long been part of my regular route and long given me trouble. Over time I had developed a method of dealing with them using a series of virtual still stands where I reoriented the uni using inertial resistance from my body each half revolution.

I have had a long break where I have not ridden much but I'm now coming back. To my surprise I have found my skills have not only returned but have quickly advanced well beyond where I left off. Part of the skill improvement has been a necessity to overcome loss of the strength I had a couple of years ago. The last couple of rides I have started to feel really good again as my fitness returns.

Tonight's ride felt great and I crossed the driveways with gusto. Rather than the series of discrete corrections I noticed my foot on one of the rising pedals was pointing toe down and I was steering by pushing backwards quite forcefully. Most of my weight was on the front pedal.

Maybe there is something in that as a way to compensate for camber. Try pointing your toes down and pushing backwards during the cycle on whichever rising pedal will overcome the camber effect.
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Old 2019-04-29, 01:01 PM   #15
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The problem with camber isn't usually that it makes a section impossible to ride. It's that it makes riding a section very annoying. Some tires seem more prone to "self steering" on cambered sections, some less, and threads like this attempt to figure out why, or which tires work better.

What you were doing, is, while it's nice that you figured it out and are able to put it into words, simply countering the forces the camber enacts on your unicycle with your feet. Which is how almost everyone countersteers against camber. Maybe your discovery will help some more "mind based" riders though. I personally can't translate very complex movements from my mind to my body very well.
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