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Old 03-23-09, 12:32 PM   #1
bigjim1
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Help me decide....

what to do. I have a Raleigh Clubman in not bad nick and it is a really nice ride. I need a new rear wheel for it so yesterday I bought, sight unseen another Clubman for the 27" wheels. The guy turned up unexpectedly with it and propped it against the garage whilst I found some cash. When he had gone I looked at the bike and was amazed to find that it seemed to have just left the factory! It was totally complete with no wear on any component including tyres. Everything is original as far as I can see. It is just virtually "as new". It has some of the original plastic packaging still attached! I think it is 1985ish. 12 speed Suntour. There are two tiny scratches on the paintwork that you have to look hard to see. Thats it! Bad news. The frame is too small for me being a 23". I could break it and use the components but seems like a terrible thing to do to a beautiful machine. I could just sell it on e-bay. Or I could fit it, I think, with longer stem and seatpost. Does anybody on here ride a smaller frame than intended for their height and how does it work out? Would welcome discussion, disagreement, advice, scorn etc. But be gentle.

Jim
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Old 03-23-09, 12:36 PM   #2
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I'd sell it, and put the money into something your size.

I've spent some time fiddling around with old bikes that weren't quite my size and I always reach a point where I *want* to keep fiddling but I can't see pouring more money into a frame that doesn't fit. So then the bikes sit around not getting ridden as much as something my size - it's a shame. One of my 4 bikes right now is about $100 away from being "perfect," but since it is a little bit too small for me I can't bring myself to keep tweaking it. I think I would be better off selling it on and putting the money into something my size.

Usually old bikes are worth more broken into pieces than they are as complete bikes, but a Raleigh fan would be delighted to find one in like-new condition.

Sell it, and use the cash on a bike your size.
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Old 03-23-09, 12:40 PM   #3
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You have a problem in a very good way! Were it me, I'd take all the new bits of the '85 and install them onto your (correct size) frame all at once, then maybe ebay the 23" frame and fork.

I had a kinda-sorta similar situation, and I put the long seat post and stem on the bike, and rode if for awhile. It was fast and light, but not comfortable for long rides (which I do a lot), so I recently sold it to a young lady for whom it is a good fit. Of course, I had to put a different bar, stem and saddle on it for her, but it was the right thing to do.

You milage may vary, of course.

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Old 03-24-09, 10:19 AM   #4
wrk101
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+1 Really two good choices. Swap all the components, then sell the bike that does not fit. Or sell the bike that does not fit complete (as found) and then pick up some decent wheels elsewhere.

I would probably do choice #1.
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Old 03-24-09, 12:10 PM   #5
bigjim1
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Hmmm. Maybe I am being too soft. it's only a piece of metal but now I believe it would be unthinkable to tear it down. I've read somewhere that a smaller frame makes the bike stiffer and more flickable? Modern bikes have this small frame/long seatpost one size fits all design. Does this make them less comfortable than the older type of large framed bike? Rick. How long is a long ride?

Jim
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Old 03-24-09, 01:24 PM   #6
stapfam
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Mountain bikes and the norm is to go for a small frame. You sit more upright in any case so perhaps it is just that the mountain bike size is smaller.

I ride compact frames- and in the Giant Road sizing- I fit an "XS" and an"S" The XS is up to a 49cm frame and the S is up to 54. For me both frames are a bit of a compromise as I can get the fore and aft on the saddle perfect on the XS- but on the S I have to have the saddle as far forward as possible. Then the juggling of parts start and I have the XS with a 110 stem and the S with a 90. Luckily both bikes fit but it is up to you to see if you can make a 23" fit your frame that must be absolutely enormous. A 23" is a big frame .
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Old 03-24-09, 03:44 PM   #7
bigjim1
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Hi Stepfam
I looked at your bikes. very nice. However they all apear to be modern compact frames. My bike is the traditional frame so has a short stem and seat post, as OE supplied by Raleigh As the post will not raise enough to suit my 35" inside leg I assume it is designed to be ridden by someone in the 5'8/10" height range. Unlike more modern bikes that have such long seat posts designed to suit a variety of riders. I don't think a 23 is a big frame as I have 2 25"/60cm framed bikes.
Jim
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