Advertise on Bikeforums.net



User Tag List

Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast
Results 1 to 25 of 26
  1. #1
    Senior Member saturnsc2's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2004
    Posts
    230
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)

    bicycle weight capacity

    how can you tell a bicycle's weight capacity? i always wondered about this. i don't think i ever seen a bicycle weight capacity stated anywhere in my manual, the bike itself, or on any bicycle related paperwork. i used to weight almost 300# at one time & now i weight between 230#-240#. i have been riding the same bicycle all through that time--an old huffy 27" road bike & it held up well. for many years i never had any trouble with it until recently i started snapping spokes, but i attribute that to just old age. i had my front wheel re-built with a dyno-hub, & the rear wheel just replaced & had no more trouble like this & expect no more trouble with spokes for a long time. now i also have a mountain bike that i ride too on occasion with the old bike. i noticed you tend to get a weight capacity with vehicles like electric scooters they sell nowadays, & most of them are flimsy with weight capacities around 200# or less which makes me wonder about bikes.....
    "DO IT IN A SATURN!"

  2. #2
    On my TARDIScycle! KingTermite's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2005
    Location
    Eastside Seattlite Termite Mound
    My Bikes
    Trek 520, Trek Navigator 300, Peugeot Versailles PE10DE
    Posts
    3,928
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    I think that's a great question......something I've always wanted to know too.

    That was my first fear when I decided to buy a new bike last year....at over 300 Lbs too, I didn't want to embarass myself by getting a bike and then kill it by crushing it to death.

    I would like to see some weight capacity numbers too....though I know it has to do with many factors, frame, wheels, etc.....
    Quote Originally Posted by coffeecake View Post
    - it's pretty well established that Hitler was an *******.

  3. #3
    Senior Member saturnsc2's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2004
    Posts
    230
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Quote Originally Posted by KingTermite
    I think that's a great question......something I've always wanted to know too.

    That was my first fear when I decided to buy a new bike last year....at over 300 Lbs too, I didn't want to embarass myself by getting a bike and then kill it by crushing it to death.

    I would like to see some weight capacity numbers too....though I know it has to do with many factors, frame, wheels, etc.....
    exactly! i always assumed most bikes a very rugged & can handle a lot of weight since they never show a weight capacity. i always noticed these small electric scooters, & like vehicles always show a weight capacity, but i wonder if that has something to do with the range you get on the battery. obviously if they advertise a range of 15 miles per battery charge, that would probably be for a lighter person. a person who weight twice that would expect a much less range...
    "DO IT IN A SATURN!"

  4. #4
    On my TARDIScycle! KingTermite's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2005
    Location
    Eastside Seattlite Termite Mound
    My Bikes
    Trek 520, Trek Navigator 300, Peugeot Versailles PE10DE
    Posts
    3,928
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Yeah....I think some bikes most definitely DO have a weight capacity....for example...I'm thinking of getting a road bike, but at 350 lbs, carbon-fiber isn't in my future. Aluminum ok? I just don't know.
    Quote Originally Posted by coffeecake View Post
    - it's pretty well established that Hitler was an *******.

  5. #5
    Senior Member saturnsc2's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2004
    Posts
    230
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Quote Originally Posted by KingTermite
    Yeah....I think some bikes most definitely DO have a weight capacity....for example...I'm thinking of getting a road bike, but at 350 lbs, carbon-fiber isn't in my future. Aluminum ok? I just don't know.
    MY OLD LUGGED STEEL FRAME SEEMS TO BE VERY STRONG & WELL BUILT. I GOT A NEW MOUNTAIN BIKE WITH AN ALUMINUM FRAME & I'M CURIOUS HOW THIS FRAME WILL HOLD UP OVER THE YEARS. I NEVER ACTUALLY SEE A WEIGHT CAPACITY ON ANY BIKES, OR THEIR SALES PAPERWORK THOUGH....
    "DO IT IN A SATURN!"

  6. #6
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Feb 2001
    Location
    England
    Posts
    12,073
    Mentioned
    2 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    In the UK, Pace have weight limits on their lightweight cross-country style MTBs
    https://www.pacecycles.com/product.a...D=1&subcat=440

    "Note: Rider Weight restriction on this product. • Maximum rider weight 210lb (95kg) "

  7. #7
    Humvee of bikes =Worksman Nightshade's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2004
    Posts
    5,165
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    To avoid this issue I only ride steel framed bikes with no less
    than 36 spoke wheels and they hold my 350+ arse just fine.

    Basicly 36 or 40 spokes is required along with a good strudy
    (hopefully steel) frame is the minumum I'd even attempt to ride
    with.

  8. #8
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Posts
    1,441
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    I remember seeing footage of Viet Cong troops pushing bicycles down the Ho Chi Minh trail loaded with hundreds of pounds of supplies. They would tie a piece of bamboo to the handlebars to steer with.

  9. #9
    Senior Member halfspeed's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2003
    Location
    SE Minnesota
    My Bikes
    are better than yours.
    Posts
    9,664
    Mentioned
    13 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Here's a really overgeneralized rule of thumb: The more expensive the bike, the lower the weight capacity.

    As prices go up, components and frames get lighter weight to go faster so they can't hold up to as much abuse.

    There are huge exceptions to this rule. You can spend large wads of cash on custom steel frames designed for 300 pounders to tour the world with gear.

    OTOH, if you're looking at low spoke count wheeled, carbon fiber framed, dura-ace equipped multi-kilobuck bikes, you might want to reconsider.

  10. #10
    la vache fantôme phantomcow2's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2004
    Location
    NH
    Posts
    6,266
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Well i think many times one of the weakest links, especially with road bikes, is the wheels. Sometimes they give weight limits for wheels. And the rest I think is up to the consumer to judge
    C://dos
    C://dos.run
    run.dos.run

  11. #11
    Chairman of the Bored catatonic's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2004
    Location
    St. Petersburg, FL
    My Bikes
    2004 Raleigh Talus, 2001 Motobecane Vent Noir (Custom build for heavy riders)
    Posts
    5,828
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    I agree, start with the most overbuilt wheels you can. Then as you get better and figure out what you really need you can go for that.

    This is opposed to buying what you think you need, and possibly finding out that it's not enough after tacoing a rim, trashing any resale value of that wheel...you can always sell off the "overbuilt" wheel later on, or do like I am, and keep it for a future project

  12. #12
    I drink your MILKSHAKE Raiyn's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2002
    Location
    St. Petersburg, FL
    My Bikes
    2003 Specialized Rockhopper FSR Comp, 1999 Specialized Hardrock Comp FS, 1971 Schwinn Varsity
    Posts
    15,082
    Mentioned
    1 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Quote Originally Posted by saturnsc2
    MY OLD LUGGED STEEL FRAME SEEMS TO BE VERY STRONG & WELL BUILT. I GOT A NEW MOUNTAIN BIKE WITH AN ALUMINUM FRAME & I'M CURIOUS HOW THIS FRAME WILL HOLD UP OVER THE YEARS. I NEVER ACTUALLY SEE A WEIGHT CAPACITY ON ANY BIKES, OR THEIR SALES PAPERWORK THOUGH....

  13. #13
    Campy or bust :p cryogenic's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2004
    Location
    Knoxville, TN
    My Bikes
    Surly Karate Monkey commuter build
    Posts
    3,139
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    I can't believe it took 7 posts for someone to actually mention the caps lock key

  14. #14
    Recovering Retro-grouch CRUM's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2003
    Location
    Some call it God's country. I call it Acton, Maine
    My Bikes
    Too Many - 7 or 8
    Posts
    5,002
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    As a bike dealer, I have on occaision worried about the rugged factor when selling a bike to the larger folks. In 1990, a 12 year old kid, Jason, came into my shop looking for a new bike. I only mention his age because at that time he weighed in at 325. The bike held up fine, but the various components did not. He folded wheels, stripped cogs, and generally wore the bike out in a couple of months. Fast forward to now. He is still riding. He is still huge ( now about 450). He rides a Rocky "Flow" now. It seems to be holding up just fine. Jason gave up trying to ride off road. He sticks to the street. So, I guess the frames themselves are rugged enough for up to 500 pounds, but the components may not be.
    Keep it 'tween the ditches

    My Blog - Lost in the Bo Zone

  15. #15
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Location
    Midwest
    My Bikes
    C'dale tandem, Specialized Roubaix,
    Posts
    209
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    A couple of years ago I bought a Cannondale commuting bike that had a Post Moderne suspension seatpost on it. I'm a big guy, the bike was a size XL, and I was unhappy when I got home and read the owner's manual. It said the seatpost had a weight limit of 185 pounds.

    I complained to the LBS that sold me the bike that if the seatpost had a weight limit of 185, then the bike (as it was sold) had a weight limit of 185. They argued with this, and refused to swap out the seatpost. The manager finally told me that the problem was my fault because I had read the owner's manual. Nintey percent of people never read the owner's manual, he said. If I hadn't read the manual like the others, he said, I wouldn't have this problem.

    Cannondale was no help, either.

    As has been said here before, frames are strong, but components often aren't. It just bugs me that manufacturers spec the same lightweight stuff and narrow handlebars on XXL or 62 cm frames as they do the bikes on the other end of the spectrum.

  16. #16
    Senior Member saturnsc2's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2004
    Posts
    230
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Quote Originally Posted by Tightwad
    To avoid this issue I only ride steel framed bikes with no less
    than 36 spoke wheels and they hold my 350+ arse just fine.

    Basicly 36 or 40 spokes is required along with a good strudy
    (hopefully steel) frame is the minumum I'd even attempt to ride
    with.
    well, my bike is just as you desctibed & i weigh around 230-240, so i'm good. my rear wheel is a new sun double wall rim, & the reont wheel is re-built with a dyno-hub, so i don't expect any trouble in the near future...
    "DO IT IN A SATURN!"

  17. #17
    Senior Member saturnsc2's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2004
    Posts
    230
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Quote Originally Posted by halfspeed
    Here's a really overgeneralized rule of thumb: The more expensive the bike, the lower the weight capacity.

    As prices go up, components and frames get lighter weight to go faster so they can't hold up to as much abuse.

    There are huge exceptions to this rule. You can spend large wads of cash on custom steel frames designed for 300 pounders to tour the world with gear.

    OTOH, if you're looking at low spoke count wheeled, carbon fiber framed, dura-ace equipped multi-kilobuck bikes, you might want to reconsider.
    ya i know what you mean. my old huffy steel road bike weight a ton. i have to use 2 hands to lug it up the steps from the basement. my new aluminum framed mountain bike i can pickup with one hand & carry it up the steps. i just wonder how that aluminum frame would hold up to a heavy rider like my old steel bike does. what's wierd is that as far as pedaling both bikes, the much heavier bike rides just as easy as the mountain bike which is lighter. maybe it's the gearing or something...
    "DO IT IN A SATURN!"

  18. #18
    Recovering Retro-grouch CRUM's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2003
    Location
    Some call it God's country. I call it Acton, Maine
    My Bikes
    Too Many - 7 or 8
    Posts
    5,002
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Quote Originally Posted by halfspeed
    Here's a really overgeneralized rule of thumb: The more expensive the bike, the lower the weight capacity.

    As prices go up, components and frames get lighter weight to go faster so they can't hold up to as much abuse.

    There are huge exceptions to this rule. You can spend large wads of cash on custom steel frames designed for 300 pounders to tour the world with gear.

    OTOH, if you're looking at low spoke count wheeled, carbon fiber framed, dura-ace equipped multi-kilobuck bikes, you might want to reconsider.
    I have to disagree with you generalized rule of thumb. Now days bikes are not necessarily dropping weight as the price goes up. As I stated before, I have a guy who weighs 450 on a Rocky "Flow" and it is by no means a low end bike. Several bike companies have earned their reputation for building rugged first and not worrying so much about weight. The new breed of Urban Assault Hardtails with long travel forks all seem to be beefed up to take big hits and it would follow that they would also take more dead weight in the first place. I have also noticed that some of the mid to lower end Hardtails I am selling have stiffer sprring kits in the larger sizes. At least the Fuji's I sell do.
    Keep it 'tween the ditches

    My Blog - Lost in the Bo Zone

  19. #19
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Oct 2004
    Posts
    11
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Weight rating specs would be convenient while bike shopping. I havnt biked since gradeschool and now I am in college and about to purchase another two wheeler. I am excited to get back on a bike but I am an ogre weighing in at around 375. I am going to pick up a trek navigator 300 and see if that does the trick. I wont be hitting any trails, just the streets and highways. Unless someone can suggest a comfortable alternative.

  20. #20
    I drink your MILKSHAKE Raiyn's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2002
    Location
    St. Petersburg, FL
    My Bikes
    2003 Specialized Rockhopper FSR Comp, 1999 Specialized Hardrock Comp FS, 1971 Schwinn Varsity
    Posts
    15,082
    Mentioned
    1 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Quote Originally Posted by cryogenic
    I can't believe it took 7 posts for someone to actually mention the caps lock key
    Neither can I

  21. #21
    Senior Member markm109's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2003
    Location
    SE Michigan
    My Bikes
    '01 Gary Fisher Tassajara; '03 Litespeed Blue Ridge; '04 Cannondale Road Tandem; '93 Schwinn Traveler
    Posts
    284
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Quote Originally Posted by halfspeed
    Here's a really overgeneralized rule of thumb: The more expensive the bike, the lower the weight capacity.

    As prices go up, components and frames get lighter weight to go faster so they can't hold up to as much abuse.
    This rule of thumb doesn't work with Titanium frames. Expensive as hell but super durable.

    I considered weight when I bought a bike 3 years ago, being 260. I started looking, doing research and considering what I would use the bike for. I wanted a bike that would last and could be used on dirt roads as well as paved because I will start touring one of these days.

    I went with a Litespeed Blue Ridge, ultegra components except Avid Shorty brakes to allow for wider tires or fenders. It also comes with 32 spoke Mavic Open Pro wheels.

    I bought the bike in November of 2003 on clearance and have over 2,100 miles on it to date. Even with my weight and rough roads, the bike is holding up great.

    So high price doesn't mean they can't hold up.

    Mark
    '03 Litespeed Blue Ridge
    '01 GF Tassajara
    '97 Schwinn Traveller

  22. #22
    Senior Member DieselDan's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2003
    Location
    Beaufort, South Carolina, USA and surrounding islands.
    My Bikes
    Cannondale R500, Motobecane Messenger
    Posts
    8,525
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    The answer really isn't the frame, as any frame can hold up under quite a bit of weight, even carbon fiber and titanium. The saddle, seatpost, and wheelset can be a much different story. I'm 285 lbs, and ride a Cannondale R500 road bike. The bare frame weights around 3 lbs, but I have a set of 36 spoke wheels on it to handle my weight.
    Bikes use brakes to stop.

    If your bike has breaks, don't ride it.

  23. #23
    Prefers Aluminum Sprocket Man's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    Location
    Honolulu
    My Bikes
    Wife: Trek 5200, C'dale Rush Feminine, Vitus 979 Me: Felt S25, Cervelo Soloist, C'dale Killer V500, Miyata Pro (fixie)
    Posts
    2,672
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    I asked this question to an attorney friend. He told me that one reason may be a liability issue. If, for instance, a bike were listed with a weight capacity of 300 lbs. and a guy who weighed 275 lbs. bought the bike, but rode it really hard until the frame cracked and he injured himself, he may sue the manufacturer for implying that people below the weight limit would be safe.

    In this litigious society, the explanation makes perfect sense to me.

  24. #24
    Banned.
    Join Date
    Oct 2004
    Posts
    4,428
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Paging pwrdbytrd.... [450#..!!]

  25. #25
    Humvee of bikes =Worksman Nightshade's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2004
    Posts
    5,165
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Quote Originally Posted by saturnsc2
    ya i know what you mean. my old huffy steel road bike weight a ton. i have to use 2 hands to lug it up the steps from the basement. my new aluminum framed mountain bike i can pickup with one hand & carry it up the steps. i just wonder how that aluminum frame would hold up to a heavy rider like my old steel bike does. what's wierd is that as far as pedaling both bikes, the much heavier bike rides just as easy as the mountain bike which is lighter. maybe it's the gearing or something...
    Remembering that YOU are the engine that moves the bike it stands to reason that the less (lighter)
    of the bike there is the easier it is to move. On the other hand, Aluminum doesn't flex at all which,
    for a heavy rider, the frame will fail much sooner than a flexible steel frame will.

    So it's a trade off.....
    Durablity= steel, Easy to move=aluminum. Ya can't have both!

Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •