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Clydesdales/Athenas (200+ lb / 91+ kg) Looking to lose that spare tire? Ideal weight 200+? Frustrated being a large cyclist in a sport geared for the ultra-light? Learn about the bikes and parts that can take the abuse of a heavier cyclist, how to keep your body going while losing the weight, and get support from others who've been successful.

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Old 10-17-07, 07:34 AM   #1
Nola_Gal
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question about standover

I've been riding my old Schwinn which has a 48cm frame. I'm 5'7 but have relatively short legs and a long torso. The standover on the Schwinn is very comfortable, but I feel pretty cramped in the reach to the bars. I replaced the stem ($15) which helped some but I'm also keeping my eye out for a craigslist or ebay find that might fit better until I can save the money for a new bike.

I've read in several places that the top tube length/fit is more important than standover height. I'm wondering if anyone else has compromised on standover to get the right TT fit. Do you get used to it? I like being able to hop off the seat at red lights but wonder if that could be troublesome if the top tube is a little high. Anyone have any thoughts/insights?
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Old 10-17-07, 07:45 AM   #2
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A compact geometry frame often gives a long torso/short legged person more options.

Specilaized Allez has a compact geometry, for example, with a lower standover/ longer top tube.
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Old 10-17-07, 09:14 AM   #3
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You can get both the correct top tube length and low standover so there is no need to compromise. You just need to look for a bike with a sloping top tube or a step through style frame. The measurement of the physical top tube length is not important, it is the theoretical top tube (horizontal line between the seat post and head tube) that matters.
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Old 10-17-07, 10:48 AM   #4
Bill Kapaun
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Can you slide the seat back a bit on its rails?
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Old 10-17-07, 12:49 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tom Stormcrowe View Post
A compact geometry frame often gives a long torso/short legged person more options.

Specilaized Allez has a compact geometry, for example, with a lower standover/ longer top tube.
+1! Lots of brands offer this geometry and/or a slope to the top tube now, Specialized, Trek, Cannondale, Lemond...... Too bad you don't need a 62cm frame
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Old 10-17-07, 12:53 PM   #6
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IMHO, standoover means almost nothing. Get the bike that fits the best, and you like the best. Don't concern yourself with standover.

... Brad
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Old 10-17-07, 07:33 PM   #7
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Thanks everyone. I'll focus on the relaxed geometry models as I do my research. The schwinn works for now. I've been making adjustments to the seat height, stem and saddle for/aft position over the last several of weeks. I'd love to find a set back seatpost for it cheap but for now I think I can ride it without causing any knee issues etc. I guess I'll continue to ride it for a while. I think the longer I ride it, the more I learn about what 'feels right' to me.
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Old 10-17-07, 11:33 PM   #8
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Sounds like you should try something like a 52cm Specialized Allez. I'm pretty sure it has a 48cm seat tube and a 52 or 53 top tube.
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Old 10-18-07, 06:24 AM   #9
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My stand-over height is right at my crotch right now; but my bikes length is perfect. There are plenty of frames out there these days that don't compromise, so that's something to look into. Also stand-over height at your crotch is dangerous - don't come after me if anything happens to your family jewels.
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Old 10-18-07, 01:50 PM   #10
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Originally Posted by Servo888 View Post
My stand-over height is right at my crotch right now; but my bikes length is perfect. There are plenty of frames out there these days that don't compromise, so that's something to look into. Also stand-over height at your crotch is dangerous - don't come after me if anything happens to your family jewels.
My situation, too. I like vintage bikes, so I always buy the bikes as big as I can straddle because my torso and arms are so long. My legs would like a 53 cm bike, but my back wants a 59 cm. I think my next bike will be a custom build, but I've never tried a bike with compact geometry.

Could someone explain exactly* what compact geometry is? Because I've avoided it because "compact" didn't sound like something someone who needed more torso space would want....
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Old 10-19-07, 08:14 AM   #11
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Quote:
originally posted by Nola_Gal
I've read in several places that the top tube length/fit is more important than standover height. I'm wondering if anyone else has compromised on standover to get the right TT fit. Do you get used to it?
Welcome fellow long-torsoed person!
You can't totally ignore standover, but I agree with many posters that having the correct TT dimension makes for a more comfortable ride.

Look and ask around til you find a shop that knows how to do proper bike fit. There's a lot to bike fitting, and many shops either don't have a knowledgeable staffer, or they cater to racers or multi-sport enthusiasts. Such shops try to fit casual recreational riders into positions comfortable only for young, thin, athletic racers.

It's worth the hundreds bucks or so to know exactly how long every bit has to be to deliver your maximum comfort.

For example, my body calls for a 56cm ST and 60cm TT. My bikes are 59cm steel frame yard sale scores. Adding a longer stem and wider bars to accommodate my shoulder width has improved comfort tremendously. At stops I unclip one side and lean that way while sliding forward off the saddle. It's worked fine for years, and will until I get my custom Winterborne frame made.

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originally posted by solveg
Could someone explain exactly* what compact geometry is?
http://www.bikeforums.net/archive/in...p/t-49639.html
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Old 10-19-07, 08:34 AM   #12
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Welcome fellow long-torsoed person!

Look and ask around til you find a shop that knows how to do proper bike fit. There's a lot to bike fitting, and many shops either don't have a knowledgeable staffer, or they cater to racers or multi-sport enthusiasts. Such shops try to fit casual recreational riders into positions comfortable only for young, thin, athletic racers.

http://www.bikeforums.net/archive/in...p/t-49639.html
That's exactly my concern. When I bought my hybrid, I think they looked at the stand-over and put me on a 15" bike which is too small. They did put a longer stem on it but as I'm learning (from riding it) there's more to it than that. I'm trying to make sure I know what to look for in fit before taking the plunge on a road bike.
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Old 10-19-07, 12:55 PM   #13
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IMHO, standoover means almost nothing. Get the bike that fits the best, and you like the best. Don't concern yourself with standover.

... Brad
It does if your short in the legs and long in the body, typically the most important measurement is the one that causes the most issues. For some folks that is the stand over height, because their legs are short, for others it's top tube length, because they have longer legs and a shorter body, for folks that are evenly proportioned, according to the bike company engineers, then your right it doesn't matter.
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