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Old 08-20-11, 04:09 PM   #1
nachomama
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Is this 15" 29er too small for me?

I just bought a Motobecane Fantom 29 with a 15" frame. Since I bought it online I wasn't able to try the bike out before buying it. However, I talked to several bike dealers and they said that a 15" frame in a 29er should be the right size for me. My 26" mountain bike is a 17" frame.

My stats are:
height: 5'-9"
Inseam: 32"
Bike stand over height: 29"

The bike feels good when I stand over it. The problem is when I ride it. I can't get my legs any where near full extension which makes me feel like I'm riding a kids tricycle. My seat post is 11" minus the 4" minimum insertion gives me 7" above the seat clamp. I think I need another 3 to 4" in height to feel comfortable pedaling.

Can I get a new seat post that is 15" or is that just going to result in other problems? Or should I just return it and hope that a 17" frame fits?

Thanks!
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Old 08-20-11, 05:49 PM   #2
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i would go up at least one frame size. Go up two sizes if you like to be stretched out on the bike. I'm also 5'9' (in my cycling shoes), and with a 32" cycling inseam. Until this spring i had been riding a 17.5" Gary Fisher Hifi 29er. This season I moved to an 18" Salsa Big Mama 29er. Just this month I built a 19" hardtail 26er as an experiment, which so far has been working out well.

You're probably on the high end of what most would recommend for a 17" frame. You could probably go either 17 or 19, depending on whether you like to be stretched out, or whether you like to have room for some body-english while riding. With a 15" frame, you're going to end up with the seat post quite high relative to the handlebars.
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Old 08-21-11, 05:07 PM   #3
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It's too small for you. I hope you saved enough by buying online to be able to make your money back when you sell it to get a frame that fits.
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Old 08-21-11, 05:20 PM   #4
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Is this 15" 29er too small for me?


yes
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Old 08-21-11, 06:25 PM   #5
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The next size up was 17" which has a stand over height of 31". I didn't feel comfortable getting the 17" with just 1" of clearance.
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Old 08-22-11, 01:49 AM   #6
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Sounds like OP would be better on a larger frame. OK when he stands over it but not OK when he's riding. Get the frame that works when riding. Who buys a bike for stand over clearance when stationary? It's a bike meant to be ridden.

I never go by seattube measurements, although its a good starting point. I rely more on effective top tube instead when sizing a frame.
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Old 08-22-11, 02:04 AM   #7
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Sounds like OP would be better on a larger frame. OK when he stands over it but not OK when he's riding. Get the frame that works when riding. Who buys a bike for stand over clearance when stationary? It's a bike meant to be ridden.

I never go by seattube measurements, although its a good starting point. I rely more on effective top tube instead when sizing a frame.
I think I'm the weird one here, because I've had a ton of people tell me standover clearance isn't an important measurement, but I pay attention to it, and I'm not even a guy. I can't even tell you how many times I've come off the bike suddenly and found myself straddling the top tube.

But +1 on the reach being more important than the seat tube length.
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Old 08-22-11, 02:24 AM   #8
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I'd stick with the small frame if the reach feels right. I have a 32.5" cycling inseam and ride a 15" rigid 26er with 400mm seatpost.

I always go for the reach. I know I want something with around a 56cm reach. I've got that 15" and my 18" Trek 400 that measure 56cm reach. I've had 17" and 17.5" frames in there too.

Last edited by LesterOfPuppets; 08-22-11 at 02:27 AM.
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Old 08-22-11, 03:44 AM   #9
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too small....
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Old 08-22-11, 05:03 AM   #10
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I think I'm the weird one here, because I've had a ton of people tell me standover clearance isn't an important measurement, but I pay attention to it, and I'm not even a guy.
People sometimes speak too strongly against standover in sort of a reaction against a too-strong dependence upon that one measurement alone. I look at it too.. One benefit is being able maneuver the bike under one's self when falling sideways. It was standover that save my arse when I went sideways off from a stunt at the skate park. It was lack of standover on my mountain-bike that hurt me when went through a similar incident while trying to scale a log pile earlier this summer. Having said all that, I prioritize top-tube and seat-to-bar drop over stand over.
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Old 08-22-11, 03:55 PM   #11
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I was able to borrow a longer seat post from a friend and it made a big difference. I am now able to put my heal on the pedal and fully extend my leg, so no more cramped feeling with my legs.

The seat is now just an inch below the top of the handlebars. I feel like I'm leaning a little too forward, but that just may be because my seat is about 4" below the handlebars on my 26er.

I've tried to research proper bike fit and setup, but alot of it seems to be personal preference. Any help would be greatly appreciated.




LesterofPuppets - how are you measuring reach? I measured it from the center of the bottom bracket to the center of the head tube and got 40 cm.
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Old 08-22-11, 05:30 PM   #12
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The next size up was 17" which has a stand over height of 31". I didn't feel comfortable getting the 17" with just 1" of clearance.
fit is more than just stand over. if your elbows and knees are locked out, it's too big. if your are all hunched over, it's too small. a lot depends on your build, small torso/long legs vs long torso/small legs vs long arms vs short t-rex arms.

of course the 17" feels big, it's a 29er, they feel high up because they are, part of the 29er charm. based strictly off your height, a 15" is too small.
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Old 08-22-11, 07:33 PM   #13
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Ooops totally quoted wrong figure. 56 is effective top Tobe I like for XC riding
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