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  1. #1
    Senior Member Mhendricks's Avatar
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    I've always wanted to get a touring bike for my wife but have always run into a problem. Because she's 4'11" most of the bikes that I would consider good choices just don't have frame sizes that would accomodate her. She's a novice cyclist but does daily rides of more than 30+ miles on an old mixte frame bike. She would never be able to do any significant hill climbing or touring on that bike. So if any of the women here on the forum have experience on this subject, please let me know. Her current frame size is 46cm. and to be honest she's too small for that.

  2. #2
    1. e4 Nf6 Alekhine's Avatar
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    Hi.

    While this is mostly about some fairly arcane English brands, this article was written specifically with a range of petite women in mind, including fairly detailed geometry reviews in the links at the bottom of the page. Perhaps your wife can go from there in deciding what works best for her.

    Hope it helps! Good luck.
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  3. #3
    Senior Member halfspeed's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mhendricks
    I've always wanted to get a touring bike for my wife but have always run into a problem. Because she's 4'11" most of the bikes that I would consider good choices just don't have frame sizes that would accomodate her. She's a novice cyclist but does daily rides of more than 30+ miles on an old mixte frame bike. She would never be able to do any significant hill climbing or touring on that bike. So if any of the women here on the forum have experience on this subject, please let me know. Her current frame size is 46cm. and to be honest she's too small for that.
    Terry specializes in bikes for small women: http://www.terrybicycles.com/

    They have a model called the Madeleine they market as a capable tourer. The spec is reasonable. The important thing about them is that the geometry doesn't get screwy on the smaller sizes. Most of the time small bikes end up with really weird frame angles to accomodate 700C wheels. Terry solves this with smaller wheels on smaller frames.

    Obviously, I've never ridden one, but at $1200 it's worth checking out.

    Of course, the more conventional wisdom is to build a Surly LHT which goes down to 42cm and uses 26" wheels on the smaller sizes.

  4. #4
    Senior Member halfspeed's Avatar
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    Also, if I remember correctly BF member MsMittens rides a little Gunnar Rock Tour and might be a good resource.

  5. #5
    The Rock Cycle eofelis's Avatar
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    I ride a 42cm LHT. PM me if you'd like more specific information on the exact size of this bike.
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  6. #6
    One Hep Cat Joe Dog's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by eofelis
    I ride a 42cm LHT. PM me if you'd like more specific information on the exact size of this bike.
    ^ Beat me to it. I was going to chime in that Surly makes a 42 and and 46 cm frame (I think) in both the Long Haul Trucker and Cross Check. I ride a 50 cm Surly and I am very happy with it. Good - it can be tough to find a good bike for short people. I have heard good things about Terry as well (especially related to fitting short women). Never seen one, but they seem like nice bikes.

  7. #7
    The Rock Cycle eofelis's Avatar
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    I also ride a 42cm Surly Pacer road bike. The 42cm Surly Crosscheck has different measurements and is "bigger" than the LHT and the Pacer, much to my chagrin.

    The Novara Randonee I have is a steel road touring bike frame. Mine is a 13.5in size and takes 26" wheels. It's got a lower standover than the Surly bikes I have, but is a bit longer in effective top tube. I found this frame new in the box at an REI "garage sale", it's from the '90s I think. It's pretty sweet. I have never seen another one, and I've been keeping my eyes open. Y' never know what will show up on ebay....
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  8. #8
    Year-round cyclist
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    When I look at their designs Terry bicycles seem more suited to fast rides or at the best light touring. For instance, even on their most "touring worthy" models, clearance seems tight for wide tires (say 28 to 32 mm wide) and fenders. Their smaller frames also use a 700c rear wheel and a 24" front wheel. As someone who currently tours with a child on a trailercycle, I find the dual-sizing rather inconvenient when touring: 2 tube sizes to carry, 2 tires on longer trips, etc.

    Basically, any decent bike with 26" tires could be designed adequately for her. For day rides and light touring, some "junior racing" frames might work if they have adequate clearances, eyelets for racks, etc. If her mixte fits her well, is good looking and if it is a good quality frame (a few were, most weren't top notch), another solution might be to upgrade the drivetrain. Not the cheapest solution, but it may be a decent one.
    Michel Gagnon
    Montréal (Québec, Canada)

  9. #9
    Senior Member halfspeed's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Michel Gagnon
    When I look at their designs Terry bicycles seem more suited to fast rides or at the best light touring. For instance, even on their most "touring worthy" models, clearance seems tight for wide tires (say 28 to 32 mm wide) and fenders. Their smaller frames also use a 700c rear wheel and a 24" front wheel. As someone who currently tours with a child on a trailercycle, I find the dual-sizing rather inconvenient when touring: 2 tube sizes to carry, 2 tires on longer trips, etc.
    All that is true, but bear in mind that riders that need Terry sized bikes are light enough that they probably don't need tires as wide as 180 pound men.

  10. #10
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    I would have though the answer was
    http://www.sjscycles.com/
    get a frame or even a complete bike exactly for her size

  11. #11
    In planning
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    I wouldn't buy a bike or even a washer from sjscycles if they are the last bike company on the planet after the way that Robin spoke to me when I was looking for sponsors, all I was looking for from them was a pair of rack, but we never got that far. This man is the rudest person I've ever had to deal with, I'll and hopefully some of you won't darkin his door ever again, if you think I've over reacted phone him and ask for some sponsorship and wait for the response. I'd like to thank my ten sponsors so far they'll make www.challengea2z.com a success, I'll step off my soap box now, rant over. I'll post my exped in the correct thread.

  12. #12
    In planning
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    In keeping with the thread I've always had custom bikes made as I'm 5'4" guy and no bike are the right size really.

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