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Today's ride with my EUC (electric unicycle) did not take place in the best conditions, but that's precisely why I think the experience is worthy enough to write a small article. Anyone who follows my blog knows for sure that I started a few months ago ride an electric unicycle. Meanwhile I feel quite comfortable on the vehicle and besides the InMotion V8 - with which I learned - I also have a KS 18 L from KingSong. This unicycle has an 18-inch tire and is therefore clearly the better choice for dirt roads and gravel roads.
The reason for my trip today was an inspection appointment for my car. Unfortunately, for once there was no one available to take me home. But that wasn't bad, because it gave me the opportunity to prove my unicycle skills. The thing with the car inspection is actually the classic area of application for a unicycle: You quickly throw it into the car, protective equipment and drive to the car workshop. Then you leave your car there and drive back on the electric unicycle.
It was already clear to me that today's trip with the unicycle would be a shaky thing. I am used to field and forest paths, but if you drive to me from the workshop (which is luckily located on the outskirts) and avoid the streets, you have about 10 kilometers ahead of you, of which only about half is a paved bike path. The rest is a colorful mix of gravel roads and muddy dirt roads to forest paths that are covered with leaves and also softened. But why did I buy an all-terrain unicycle?
That my KingSong KS 18 L copes quite well with the field and gravel paths has already proven several times in the summer. Today, however, the conditions were anything but inviting:
Well how was the ride? I arrived home after a good 35 minutes. It rained wet and had cold toes. But otherwise there were no "failures". On a dirt road the tractor track was a bit deep and turned my unicycle away, but since I wasn't driving fast, I could just get off and "run out" in the meadow next door. The unicycle did a little somersault, but luckily these things can take a lot.
Otherwise, the ride was much more demanding than a dry bike path. Especially in curves with wet leaves, I always reduced my speed and drove slowly to minimize the risk of slipping. Some deep, frozen puddles were also tricky. If you drive into deep puddles and potholes, it usually ends in a fall, because the unicycle stalls and you continue to "drive" yourself - I think that's what physicists call inertia.
The darkness wasn't really an issue. The unicycle's built-in light would certainly not have been enough to drive quickly, but with a powerful headlamp it wasn't a problem. With the forehead lamoe one has the advantage that one can follow "suspicious" places on the way with the light in order to examine them more closely. The built-in light in the EUC is simply too close to the ground and does not go far enough when driving at 20 km / h in the dark.
The protective equipment was also helpful - not because I would have fallen, but because it is well padded and insulates against the cold wind. This kept my knees warm. The toes, on the other hand, would have been happy about heated shoe insoles - despite merino hiking socks and mountain boots. But I don't drive enough in winter for such expenses. The toes are probably the "weakest" point on winter trips, as they are usually hardly moved. A windproof balaclava would have been a good thing, as it got quite frosty on the chin and nose. With a journey time of 35 minutes, it was just ok, without a balaclava.
The KingSong KS 18 L is a fairly new unicycle that was only released in mid-2018. With its 18 inches and a good 2000 W power (4000 W peak), it can travel on paved roads at up to 50 km / h. However, I drive a lot slower because 30 km / h has always felt like crazy "lawn" to me. But the KingSong unicycle not only scores points on roads, it can also handle steep and bumpy terrain very well. It has also proven today that he does not mind a rain or snow shower.
The mud flap on the back of the unicycle is also a very practical thing. Many unicycles do not have this and, in my opinion, are therefore less suitable for rainy weather. Without him my jacket would have looked pretty messed up after the ride.
Overall, the EUC from KingSong is really a successful overall package. The wide 18 inch tire makes driving comfortable and ensures good suspension on stony terrain.
I hope my post could help you a bit if you are looking for a suitable unicycle or if you're wondering whether you can ride an electric unicycle through the prairie in winter. Yes, you can do that very well if the mud is no deeper than 4-5 cm. But after that it becomes uncomfortable even with a bike. ;-)
Jens has been running the blog since 2012. He appears as Sir Apfelot for his readers and helps them with problems of a technical nature. In his free time he drives electric unicycles, takes photos (preferably with his iPhone, of course), climbs around in the Hessian mountains or hikes with the family. His articles deal with Apple products, news from the world of drones or solutions for current bugs.