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  1. #1
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    Great deal on a used bike... but is it too big?

    Hello all,

    I've been reading the forums and have seen some similar posts but would still love to get some feedback from the community.

    I've got the opportunity to pick up a used bike at a great price. I've checked sizing using an online fit calculator and it would seem that the longest TT I would want to go with is 533, and a max stem of 102. This particular bike I am looking at has a TT length of 565, and a stem length of 100. I tried sitting on the bike (unfortunately I live in Toronto and right now the road conditions are just too messy with ice and snow to test drive the bike) and it felt a little long, but only a little. I felt like I had plenty of clearance when I stood over the bike too. If I were to pick up the bike do you think I would be fine it I just swapped out the stem for a 70? That would bring me exactly to the top of my recommended range.

    I'm happy to provide any other info that is needed, I just didn't want to make this post too long.

    I look forward to your feedback.

    Thanks!

  2. #2
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    Quote Originally Posted by Natilus13 View Post
    Hello all,

    I've been reading the forums and have seen some similar posts but would still love to get some feedback from the community.

    I've got the opportunity to pick up a used bike at a great price. I've checked sizing using an online fit calculator and it would seem that the longest TT I would want to go with is 533, and a max stem of 102. This particular bike I am looking at has a TT length of 565, and a stem length of 100. I tried sitting on the bike (unfortunately I live in Toronto and right now the road conditions are just too messy with ice and snow to test drive the bike) and it felt a little long, but only a little. I felt like I had plenty of clearance when I stood over the bike too. If I were to pick up the bike do you think I would be fine it I just swapped out the stem for a 70? That would bring me exactly to the top of my recommended range.

    I'm happy to provide any other info that is needed, I just didn't want to make this post too long.

    I look forward to your feedback.

    Thanks!
    Firstly, make sure the saddle fore/aft is correct. If the seat was, say, 7 cm behind the BB, and it needs to be 9 cm, that "little long" reach will be 2 cm longer when you fix the fore/aft! Also, going to a 70 mm stem will cause the handling to suffer. You probably would be better with a smaller frame. Also, I STRONGLY recommend getting a fitting done . . . for some of us, those on-line calculators can be WAY off!

  3. #3
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    Thanks for the feedback Pakossa. I'm actually going to go visit the LBS that sponsors our club to get them to help me with the fit. I feel a little guilty since I won't be buying the bike from them if it fits but at least I would be buying any new components from them, and going back again for a proper fitting if I do pick up the bike.

  4. #4
    DLP
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    Quote Originally Posted by Natilus13 View Post
    Thanks for the feedback Pakossa. I'm actually going to go visit the LBS that sponsors our club to get them to help me with the fit. I feel a little guilty since I won't be buying the bike from them if it fits but at least I would be buying any new components from them, and going back again for a proper fitting if I do pick up the bike.
    Don't feel guilty. You're walking into the shop and building relationships. Note that all your LBS can do is offer you a bike sizing - they'd need the bike to do a proper fitting.

    Also, if you really like the bike, don't be afraid of something a little too big. As you said, shortening the stem will get you most of the way there, but so will bringing the saddle forward and then up a little - having some standover clearance suggests you might be able to get away with this without sacrificing appropriate knee or ankle bends throughout the pedal motion. I'd be interested in comparing the ST specified by the online calculator and that of the bike. If it's a closer match, you might be in business. You also have some options in the headset - getting shallower drops (assuming you want to ride drops) will help keep that torso/arm angle right around 90deg.

    I just went through the same process and ended up buying the bike, even though the online calculator suggested it was too big. And boy, am I glad I did!
    Last edited by DLP; 01-02-14 at 08:18 AM.

  5. #5
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    Hey DLP, thanks for the input.

    So when I went to the LBS, they measured me and said a 54 would be perfect and that 56 would most likely be too big. Then I told him the deal I was being offered on this bike and said "Wow... okay, we're going to make this work for you".

    I've convinced the seller to head back to the LBS with me this weekend with the bike to see if we can indeed make it fit.

    Wish me luck!

  6. #6
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    Thought I should share... I ended up buying the bike. After getting a fitting done it looks like I should only need to go with a 90 stem and adjust the saddle somewhat. Luckily for me this particular 56 is actually on the small side due to the bike geometry.

    Now, if spring would only hurry up and get here so I can get this puppy out on the road...


  7. #7
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    Should work fine, as long as you are not obsessed with getting a very low bar position. Typically the seat angle is greater on a bigger bike, so you will have to move the saddle forward. this will shorten the TT, so you won't need as short a stem as you might think

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