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Singlespeed & Fixed Gear "I still feel that variable gears are only for people over forty-five. Isn't it better to triumph by the strength of your muscles than by the artifice of a derailer? We are getting soft...As for me, give me a fixed gear!"-- Henri Desgrange (31 January 1865 - 16 August 1940)

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Old 10-13-06, 09:25 AM   #1
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48cm bikes

I'm looking for a new/used bike for my girlfriend, but why are 46-48cm bikes (yeah, shes kinda short) so hard to come across? I was told the new Schwinn Madison doesn't measure in numerical sizes, but the small is probably comprable to a 52. Does anybody know if there is an extra small? Also, I was looking on ebay, and found a couple of auctions on geared bikes(I'm gonna get her a single speed because she never used to shift anyways) that I could convert for pretty cheap. Is there any budget frames I am missing that I can get in such a small size? This is really getting to be frustrating.
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Old 10-13-06, 09:27 AM   #2
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fuji track se
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Old 10-13-06, 09:31 AM   #3
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I should add that she is pulling the "I don't like that one, its ugly" a lot.

Admit it, Fuji Track = Vomit.
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Old 10-13-06, 09:32 AM   #4
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bianchi san jose
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Old 10-13-06, 09:34 AM   #5
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I am in the same boat for my GF. She is 5'1". I have been looking for quite awhile now. What I have found in the smaller sizes are:
Bianchi San Jose 44cm
Fuji Track 43cm
Surly Crosscheck 42cm also comes in 46cm
EAI Brass knuckle

For doing a conversion, I have been looking for a decent frame in a smaller size and they are hard to come by. They didn't make too many frames that small in the 70s. Most of the ones that I do find that would be a good fit are too rusty or not even worth the time.
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Old 10-13-06, 09:35 AM   #6
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The san jose is niiiiiice looking..
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Old 10-13-06, 09:36 AM   #7
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Chuck's Bikes still has a 48cm Tsunami track frame listed. Dunno if it's drilled for brakes, though.
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Old 10-13-06, 09:36 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ryand
I should add that she is pulling the "I don't like that one, its ugly" a lot.
Doesn't that just piss you off! I have heard that too much as well. Like they never heard of powdercoating the frame.
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Old 10-13-06, 09:36 AM   #9
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You guys need to start slipping your girlfriends growth hormones.
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Old 10-13-06, 09:40 AM   #10
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definately need brakes.
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Old 10-13-06, 09:43 AM   #11
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Has she said no to IRO? Looks like all their frames go down to 48-46 c-c on the seat tube.
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Old 10-13-06, 09:46 AM   #12
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the 50cm MarkV and 52cm Rob Roy were in the running, but the 29.5" stand over gives her not much breathing room.
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Old 10-13-06, 09:47 AM   #13
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RYAND, can't get ot it right now, but you need to see this:

do a search for "Kabuki" on Ebay, there is an amazing machine in CHROME!!!!
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Old 10-13-06, 09:52 AM   #14
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that 29.5" standover is cutting it close on her. it doesn't give her much room to breathe at all. Perhaps I should go a little smaller than 48 even.
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Old 10-13-06, 09:53 AM   #15
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^^^^ how tall is she?
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Old 10-13-06, 09:58 AM   #16
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A small On-One Pompino is 48cm c-t plus it's semi-compact so standover should be a little better.
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Old 10-13-06, 09:59 AM   #17
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After floundering about ebay and craigslist, I just got a 48cm Soma smoothie frame for my wife, so I feel the OP's pain.

It's super hard to find something decent because frame builders have to pull some cranky janky geometry tricks to get frames that small to fit 700c tires, have clearance for nads, and decent top-tube length. My wife's inseam is 29", so with that, you either have: a sloping top-tube and/or slack steerer angles and steep seat tube angles, or you go with smaller wheels and more normal geometry: 650 wheels (should have done this, probably), or with the big wheel/small wheel Terry wheel set up.

I think the big/small looks really odd. And the wife found the small wheel a bit too twitchy. You can find the big/smallies around--there's a Dave Scott Ironman pink and white model that pops up every once in a while with horizontal dropouts, which should convert pretty well to fixie riding. If you live around DC, I know how you can get your hands on one.

edit: ah, you are in d.c.! head on up to Proteus in College Park with your girlfriend if you want to check the bike out. It belongs to the old-timer mechanic there. They're good people up at Proteus.

Last edited by comradehoser; 10-13-06 at 10:07 AM.
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Old 10-13-06, 10:12 AM   #18
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we are heading up to college park bikes tomorrow, we will swing by proteus as well. the salmon/white centurion is one of the couple i looked at on ebay today. shes maybe 5'1" or 5'2" and her inseem is about 29"-30"(she measured it herself, so i'm not too sure on her measurement)

thanks for the help guys, its so good when the bikeforums community puts in good words and still has fun.
i kinda like the small front big back thing, but its up to her, not me. i was thinking if i can't find anything at all, i will just get a bike and put a 650 set on it.
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Old 10-13-06, 10:19 AM   #19
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I don't think Kabuki's were anything special, but hell if they don't have my favorite headbadges of all time.
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Old 10-13-06, 10:20 AM   #20
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if she's 5'1" with a 30" inseem, her body over is 50% legs.
that's a little weird.

(then again, im really bad at math, so maybe im totally wrong).

good luck.
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Old 10-13-06, 10:22 AM   #21
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5 feet = 60 inches. (5 x 12 = 60)
61/2 > 30
you are wrong.

but i still love you.
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Old 10-13-06, 10:22 AM   #22
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but it does make it almost 50/50, which is odd.
maybe i just think that because i have tiny legs though...
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Old 10-13-06, 10:28 AM   #23
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http://cgi.ebay.com/2005-FELT-F24-Ju...QQcmdZViewItem
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Old 10-13-06, 10:28 AM   #24
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when i was looking for frames i contacted the juniorvelo and ended up w/ this post: Junior-sized Track Bikes
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Old 10-13-06, 10:33 AM   #25
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yeah, I'm unnaturally prejudiced against college park bikes, and I work right next door, basically... I looooove me some Proteus, though.

I'm sure if you ask nicely, and explain that you're looking for a small woman's fixie-conversion frame, they would let your girlfriend take it for a spin. She could also try some other 48c./700-c roadies they have there (Jamis aurora, they also might have an orbea) just for comparison's sake. My impression is that if your gfriend likes a more aggressive track-ish geometry, she'll like the dave scott a lot better than the full 700c frames. Jill, the owner at Proteus, is a not so tall woman, so she might be a decent help.

Technically, Proteus doesn't sell used bikes. The bike belongs to the mechanic, not the shop, so you'd have to talk to him about buying it.
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