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  1. #1
    Senior Member veganheart's Avatar
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    I am 6 feet tall. What size frame fits me?

    I am 6 feet tall. What size frame fits me?
    I am currently looking to buy a frame so I want to buy one that fits properly.
    Thanks

    May You Live in Winds of Gentle Peace

  2. #2
    Scooby Snax
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    depends on what your inseam reach and trunk measurements are, as well as what kind of bike you are looking at?
    Mountain. road, comfrort?
    Hit a Bike shop and ask what they have that will fit you...
    Good luck!!

  3. #3
    Around now and then DnvrFox's Avatar
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    Originally posted by veganheart
    I am 6 feet tall. What size frame fits me?
    I am currently looking to buy a frame so I want to buy one that fits properly.
    Thanks

    I am 6 feet with a clothing inseam of 29". I know folks who are the same height with a clothing inseam of 34" or more. We would not take the same size frame. Also, it is more critical with a road bike than with a mtn bike.

    Get thee to a good LBS (Local Bike Shop) and let them fit you for a bike of the style you would like to ride. Also, there are some good bike fit articles at:

    http://www.sheldonbrown.com/frames/

    and

    http://rivbike.com/html/bikes_framesize.html

    http://www.peterwhitecycles.com/

    Welcome.
    Last edited by DnvrFox; 04-08-03 at 07:58 PM.
    DnvrFox - still bicycling, swimming, walking and weight lifting at 74yo is participating a bit in BFN 50+.

  4. #4
    It tastes like burning! deliriou5's Avatar
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    29"!!?? wow you're a regular robert e lee, eh?
    The only true knowledge is knowing that you know nothing - Socrates

    Back on the bike!!

  5. #5
    Around now and then DnvrFox's Avatar
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    Originally posted by deliriou5
    29"!!?? wow you're a regular robert e lee, eh?
    You can keep the snide comments to yourself, thanks!!
    DnvrFox - still bicycling, swimming, walking and weight lifting at 74yo is participating a bit in BFN 50+.

  6. #6
    Senior Member veganheart's Avatar
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    Thanks for your responses so far.
    My wife helped measure my inseam and we figured it to be around 31 cm. But that number seems low as a chart I looked at on one website said that a person who is 6 feet would have an inseam of 34cm and the frame size should be 58 to 59 cm. It seems so confusing. I am finding people have different opinions. A person who works in a bike shop and is in my university class says that I should have a 19" or 50cm frame, but that seems too small.
    This frame I am looking for will be a road frame.
    May You Live in Winds of Gentle Peace

  7. #7
    Senior Member veganheart's Avatar
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    By the way, the people at my local bike shop aren't all that friendly. They give me the feeling that, because i am not going to buy a bike there, they are hesistant to give me service. Thus, I am reluctant to ask them to size me for a bike.
    May You Live in Winds of Gentle Peace

  8. #8
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    a size 50 is definitely too small for you. i am a female 5'7, and i ride a 52.
    sounds to me like you would be a 58 or 59. if you are in between sizes, take the smaller of the two because you can make more adjustments to it.

    just my .02

  9. #9
    It tastes like burning! deliriou5's Avatar
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    yeah you shouldn't ask them to size you for a bike if you don't intend on buying. no wonder they're being unfriendly! they'll be your best friend if you buy a bike from them!

    sounds like you're trying to do what i did and shopping for a used bike online... you need to be extra careful about sizing... i will discuss this below.

    go to http://www.wrenchscience.com for a good geometry calculator. and please remember that not all 50cm frames will fit you the same. I had to go through 2 wrong-sized bikes before settling on my current one.... a specialized 54, 52, and now i'm on my current love, a 50 cm specialized allez comp.

    look closesly at geometry specs... most specifically, top tube length, standover clearance, and seat tube length, in that order.
    The only true knowledge is knowing that you know nothing - Socrates

    Back on the bike!!

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    I can speak about the commuter flavor of bike (but know nothing about the racing flavor). You should have a little bit of clearance when your feet are on the ground and you straddle the frame. The shoes you normally wear when you bike might play a small role in the frame size you chose. I wear street shoes when I bike, so when I pick out my frame size, I always wear street shoes. After buying a handful of bikes in the last eight years, I now know what my frame size is ... or least where to start looking. One more thing, the size of the tire might play a role as well, but a salesman should get you in the 'neighborhood'.

    My inseam is 33" and I've bought bikes with a frame size of 59cm (a bit too big) and 57cm (almost perfect). I would like to have a 56cm frame, but the brand I buy (Batavus), doesn't make that frame size in the models I want to buy.

    The next smaller size in the model I bought was 53cm and while vertically that felt OK (with the saddle properly adjusted), the handelbars were much to close ... things were out of proportion; I would have looked like an adult riding my young son's bike.

    After you zero in on the frame size, adjust the saddle so your legs are almost , but not quite straight, when you pedal. You should have a break in your leg. I don't know what the 'degree' measurement is, but a good bike saleman should get you in the ballpark settings. I always play around with the handlebars and saddle settings until things seem right. If the saddle setting is too high you can inflame your Achilles tendon. I once biked a long distance when my sadlle was too high and it was very cold outside. I didn't have my allen wrench with me and just persevered; I knew the saddle was too high, but I never thought I'd hurt myself. Well, I wound up with extra fluid in my Achilles tendon ... it made a crunchy sound when I moved and I was out of action for a while. I learned a lesson.

    I hope this has been of some help and if I've given you bad advice, I hope someone points that out. I am not an expert ... I've just bought a few bikes over the years and asked a lot of questions in the process.

  11. #11
    Senior Member veganheart's Avatar
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    thanks for all your input davehorne. i know you spent a long typing all that... unless you are a really fast typist! : )
    May You Live in Winds of Gentle Peace

  12. #12
    Senior Member trmcgeehan's Avatar
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    I am 6'1" and have a 31" inseam. My LBS guessed my frame size is 58 cm, but he didn't actually measure it. How do you measure frame size?
    "I am a true laborer. I earn that I eat, get that I wear, owe no man hate, envy no man's happiness, glad of other men's good, content with my harm." As You Like It, Act 3, Scene 2. Shakespeare.
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    Measuring frame size --- I've watched the owner of my local store measure frame sizes and it is from the middle of the pedal crank shaft to the top of the frame where you plug in the saddle.

    I hope I'm using the correct terms.

  14. #14
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    A 50cm frame for a person 6' tall???? What is that guy smoking??? 50cm frames are made for people just taller than a child.
    Je vais à vélo, donc je suis!

  15. #15
    It tastes like burning! deliriou5's Avatar
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    Originally posted by D*Alex
    A 50cm frame for a person 6' tall???? What is that guy smoking??? 50cm frames are made for people just taller than a child.
    I am offended by that, D*Alex...

    I'm 5'7" (much taller than a child, I think) and I ride a 50 cm frame...

    But then again, offending is your forte, isn't it...
    The only true knowledge is knowing that you know nothing - Socrates

    Back on the bike!!

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    I think we might need to remeasure everything. I'm 5'9" and my inseam is 33". I'm of average height and build.

    When I buy Levis, (we'll leave my waist out this), I usually buy a 33" length. On occasion a 32" length might work.

    If your inseam is really 29" your legs _are_ shorter than what most of us expect from someone who is 6' tall. My current 'commuter' bike has a 57cm frame (I'm 5'9" with a 33" inseam). From what I can fathom, you probably have a difficult time buying clothes off the rack. (I also did in the US, but European sizes are more forgiving.)

    If I were you, I would take a look at a 56cm or 57cm frame and work downward from there. I wrote earlier in this thread a 'ballpark' method of trying frames ... straddle a frame with your feet on the floor and your jewels with a bit of clearance above the frame.

    Since your measurements are a bit out of the 'norm', you'll really going to have to experiment and have someone knowledgeable help you. You're not going to get a concrete answer here with what you've given us; you gotta go to a store and actually ride some bikes.

    I'm fortunate that my bike guy actually rides bikes and knows his stuff. He knows my size even if I forget. His insights are good. I would _not_ buy a bike through the mail just to save a few bucks. If _I_ were not happy with my bike, I know my dealer would take it back and order the correct frame size for me ... that's a fact.

    This is a difference in culture ... in Europe (well, at least in the Netherlands), you will be taken seriously and they will bend over backwards to make sure you have the right bike. Every village has at least one bike store.

    FWIW, my local guy would have ordered a bike for me to try _even_ if I decided that the frame size was not correct for me; he would have sold it to someone else eventually.

    Keep us posted with your choice. DH

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    I'm 5'7" (much taller than a child, I think) and I ride a 50 cm frame...
    You ride a 50cm (~19") road bike frame??? Please, post a pic-this I gotta see...
    Je vais à vélo, donc je suis!

  18. #18
    Senior Member veganheart's Avatar
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    just to let you know davehorne, the person who is 6 feet with 29 inseam is not me (ie the one orignally started this thread. he / she is just a nice person, like yourself, trying to give me some good advice.
    May You Live in Winds of Gentle Peace

  19. #19
    It tastes like burning! deliriou5's Avatar
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    Originally posted by D*Alex
    You ride a 50cm (~19") road bike frame??? Please, post a pic-this I gotta see...
    i will be glad to do so! i still don't have a pic of me ever riding a bike, but i do have a digicam... i'll have a friend take the pic

    BTW - specialized frames run big... my 50cm bike actually has a 30.5" standover clearance!!
    The only true knowledge is knowing that you know nothing - Socrates

    Back on the bike!!

  20. #20
    Around now and then DnvrFox's Avatar
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    I think we might need to remeasure everything. I'm 5'9" and my inseam is 33". I'm of average height and build.
    And why must we remeasure everything?

    You don't believe or trust the rest of us? You have some level of omnipotent knowledge about our measurements that we or others don't have?

    Folks who seem to think they are smarter than the rest of us really get old.
    DnvrFox - still bicycling, swimming, walking and weight lifting at 74yo is participating a bit in BFN 50+.

  21. #21
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    Originally posted by DnvrFox
    And why must we remeasure everything?

    You don't believe or trust the rest of us? You have some level of omnipotent knowledge about our measurements that we or others don't have?

    Folks who seem to think they are smarter than the rest of us really get old.
    I apologize for having written that. I also misunderstood who was writing what. My intent was to be helpful and I see that I wasn't. Sorry.

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    I'm assuming they measur ctr. of BB to the top of the seat tube? Most bikes traditionally were measured ctr. to ctr.
    Je vais à vélo, donc je suis!

  23. #23
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    Originally posted by D*Alex
    I'm assuming they measur ctr. of BB to the top of the seat tube? Most bikes traditionally were measured ctr. to ctr.
    After I posted how my local bike guy measures frames, I went and measured my bike. I can't speak for the rest of the world, but my bike measures exactly 57 cm (as it should) from the middle of the pedal crank to the top of the seat post (or whatever these things are called).

  24. #24
    cycle-powered nathank's Avatar
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    well, each frame is a little different b/c of the measuring to the seat post which can vary by design... and frame size does not directly take into account frame length

    i'm 6'1" with a relatively long upper body. i ride a 58cm road bike which fits me pretty well, but it's a tad short in length (i decided that was ok and is a little more "sporty")

    basically, use the frame size designation as a basis, in your case, sounds like about a 57... and then look at bikes from 56 to 57cm and try then out. stand over the bike straddling the top tube and lift the bike up. you should be able to lift it about 2" off the ground.

    next you need to look at the LENGTH of the bike as this varies between different bike makers and frames... and although generally bikes get longer as the frame sizes get longer, you can have 2 frames of the same size (say 57cm) that vary by a good inch or more in length. i've seen some descriptions that try to say based on your trunk and arm length how much distance from seat post to headseat, but it's really better done by feel... so it's best to test ride the bike before you buy it.

    for me, i really wanted a LeMond as they are known for being long and they fit me really nice, but i found a smoking deal on a Raleigh R700 that was only a little short and i have been fine with it.

    if you're buying on the internet, i guess try and find a reference bike that fits you, measure it and then find as many of the measurements on the frame/bike you want to buy (distance from seatpost to headset, downtube angle, fork rake angle, stem length, etc)
    why drive when you can ride?
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  25. #25
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    Do you currently ride a bike? Usually, you base your next bike size on what you are currently riding, +- any differences you want to make.
    If you currently dont ride, then it is a lot more difficult. A ballpark figure is to leave x" of clearance between your 'nads and the top tube, where x varies with the use (road, MTB), and style (horizontal top tube, sloping/compact top tube).
    A simple measurement of frame "size" is from the bottom bracket to some point on the top tube. The BB itself can vary in hight off the ground. The same "size" frame may vary by up to 2" in its standover clearance.

    Given adaquate standover clearance, then the really important dimension is the length of the frame, which affects your reach. This depends on your body proportions and on your riding style, ie how low and aerodynamic or upright and comfortable YOU like to ride.

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