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  1. #1
    Senior Member Shuke's Avatar
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    Track Bike Sizing

    I'm looking to buy a track bike for velodrome racing. I ride a 58cm cervelo right now with this geometry. Saddle height from the center of the bottom bracket is 80.5cm, the tip of my saddle is 6-7cm behind the center of the bottom bracket, 175mm cranks, and I have a 110mm -6 stem on it with one 7mm spacer under it.

    What specs should I be looking for in a true track bike?
    Should the top tube be roughly the same length?
    I assume I'll need 170mm cranks?
    Do I need a 56 or a 58cm bike?

  2. #2
    Elitist carleton's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Shuke View Post
    I'm looking to buy a track bike for velodrome racing. I ride a 58cm cervelo right now with this geometry. Saddle height from the center of the bottom bracket is 80.5cm, the tip of my saddle is 6-7cm behind the center of the bottom bracket, 175mm cranks, and I have a 110mm -6 stem on it with one 7mm spacer under it.

    What specs should I be looking for in a true track bike?
    Should the top tube be roughly the same length?
    I assume I'll need 170mm cranks?
    Do I need a 56 or a 58cm bike?
    I see way too many people on the track riding bikes that are too small for them. Most of them "heard that my track bike should be 2cm smaller than my road bike" and wound up with a bike that is one size too small.

    Most people ride bikes with top tubes the same length as their road bikes. Start there. Find a bike that will give you the same cockpit. In the manufacturer's specs, pay attention to the effective top tube length instead of the frame size. For example, the Trek T1 size "60" has an effective top tube length of 58cm. To this day I wonder why they did that.

    That being said, if you plan on being a sprint specialist and running your seat tube angle at like 75 or 76 degrees with 5cm or less saddle-set-back, then you might want a LONGER top tube to account for the fact that your legs/hips are rotated forward a good bit.

  3. #3
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    My track bike is the size as my road bike. Granted I'm a noob and don't know better, but definitely not feeling uncomfortable on the bike after making extended laps. I'd say try and stay around where your road bike is currently at.
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  4. #4
    Captain Ramrod taras0000's Avatar
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    Thirded on the same size bit. The whole "downsize 2cm" thing came about because the bottom bracket of a track bike is about 2cm HIGHER than a road bike's, sometimes more. This would keep the top tube at the same standover height as your road bike. You would never make your final decision on a road bike purchase solely based on standover height, so I don't understand why this suggestion even gained any traction in the first place.
    Taras

  5. #5
    Sqrl
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    My track bike is the same size as my road bike, except for a shorter head-tube.

  6. #6
    Senior Member chas58's Avatar
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    The forum here often says, stick to the same frame size as you use on the road. Not bad advice, but there is one thing missing here. Handlebars.

    Road handlebars can be pretty tight, while track handlebars can be pretty open.
    Just comparing a pair of Dieda road/track handlebars, the reach changes from 75mm to 110mm, and drop from 130mm to 173mm.

    You may be fine on a 54cm road bike, but if you go to a 54cm track bike with track drops, you are going to be really stretched out. Of course you can always swap the bars out.

    Food for thought….

  7. #7
    No matches Flatballer's Avatar
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    So I'm leaning towards a Giant Omnium as my first track bike. I ride a Medium Ridley Noah which has a 56.5 cm effective top tube and 54cm seat tube. I'm unsure what size I should get on the Omnium. M/L has a 53.5cm seat tube and 56.5cm top tube (effective? not sure). The medium has a 50cm seat tube and 55.5 cm top tube.

    I feel like I'm kind of in the middle. I'm probably going to buy it from a shop, so they'll help out, but I'm just curious what you all think.

    Also, it comes with 170mm cranks and they said they probably can't swap it out because they'd have a hard time selling it. I ride 172.5mm on the road and like short spinny cranks (I'm 6 feet tall). I also ride on a relatively steep track (42.5). Will I be ok with 170 for a while? If they give me a discount on some 167.5 would that be a better option?

    Anyone have reviews of the Omnium too? I haven't found many, but they're all good.
    It's a bike race, not a tea party. - GirlAnachronism

  8. #8
    Elitist carleton's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Flatballer View Post
    So I'm leaning towards a Giant Omnium as my first track bike. I ride a Medium Ridley Noah which has a 56.5 cm effective top tube and 54cm seat tube. I'm unsure what size I should get on the Omnium. M/L has a 53.5cm seat tube and 56.5cm top tube (effective? not sure). The medium has a 50cm seat tube and 55.5 cm top tube.

    I feel like I'm kind of in the middle. I'm probably going to buy it from a shop, so they'll help out, but I'm just curious what you all think.

    Also, it comes with 170mm cranks and they said they probably can't swap it out because they'd have a hard time selling it. I ride 172.5mm on the road and like short spinny cranks (I'm 6 feet tall). I also ride on a relatively steep track (42.5). Will I be ok with 170 for a while? If they give me a discount on some 167.5 would that be a better option?

    Anyone have reviews of the Omnium too? I haven't found many, but they're all good.
    I would go with the M/L size.

    Order some 167.5mm cranks and sell the 170s yourself. You have a track in your city with lots of people trying to buy/build track bikes all of a sudden. You'll probably sell them quickly.

    The Omnium is a fine bike.

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