I am constantly scrounging craigslist for a nice deal on a tri bike but I am unsure about what frame size I should be looking for. I ride a 56 (I'm 5'11" but have long legs/short torso which sometimes makes sizing a challenge) in a road bike but don't know if tri bikes are sized comparably. Obviously I would get a fit if I ever buy or find one I am seriously interested in, but for the moment when just looking at ad's does anyone have any advice on what range of frame size I should consider?
I'd been contemplating getting a tri bike for a while since I seemed to be hitting a aerodynamic brick wall with my road bike. I'd been browsing E bay for quite a while. Finally I found a 2012 bike that I thought would work,appeared to be in great shape, and was about $600 less than that same model new. The auction was to end on Monday late afternoon.
Before I pulled the trigger, I thought I should stop by my local bike shop and just see what they still had in stock. I must say that we have a GREAT bike shop here in Syracuse NY,called Bike Loft East. They support and cater to their Triathlon customers! Very knowledgeable and helpful even to us newbies. well I'm glad I stopped in!! They were able to determine what brand of Tri bike would work best for me. Since I'm somewhat senior, and not so flexible. A bike with a low "stack" would have not worked and I would have been way to stretched out over the aerobars. There were a number of Tri bikes that were within my budget and would spec out well for me. The shop was willing to work with me and I picked up a new Quintara Roo Sedoza for only a few hundred dollars more than the E bay bike. We made some changes on the bike to better match my capabilities. (different chain rings on the compact crank). Obviously, the E bay bike would have been a total unknown, with no support or warranty or recourse if you weren't satisfied.
I came back the next day with my cycle pants and shoes and spent two hours getting the new bike fitted. That in itself was worth the difference in price. In the long run, I'm much happier with my local purchase from a bike shop that will take care of me. I think I really came out ahead buying locally! I know I'll be seeing him at all the Triathlon races!!
Oh and the Triathlon bike??? Very different feel from my road bike and it took me a few rides before I was comfortable on it. As to speed??? I have a quick 20 mile loop that I ride routinely. I'm riding the loop about 2 minutes quicker on the Triathlon bike!! The more layed-out position on the triathlon bike works some different muscles in my legs. As I spend more time on the bike my times should just get better!!
You need to figure out what stack and reach will fit you for a tri bike. Go to a professional fitter first and he will tell you EXACTLY what stack and reach is best for you and your build then you can select a frame.
IMO Road bikes have a lot more leeway and there is less room for error with a tri bike. Getting into a comfortable aero position is what is most important on a tri bike so the bike really has to fit you well. The top tube length on a tri bike is more important than the seat post length. Most manufactures now list stack and reach measurements for their bikes.
not rocket science. if your fit and ride you will ajust to the new tribike....steeper twicky at first. I also ride 56 but have short legs 5'11" but 30 " inseam. rode a 54 tribike
I am 6' and the CC guy on the phone told me same thing about a Ridley Dean I am deciding to get. When I gave him my measurements and what road bike I currently have he said you normally will go down a size from your road bike to a tri bike.