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Anybody riding bikes slightly too big?

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Anybody riding bikes slightly too big?

Old 03-01-16, 11:30 AM
  #1  
DMC707 
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Anybody riding bikes slightly too big?

Warning -- this bike is not C&V (although it is "obsolete" by modern standards ) -- i am sharing this here as i am trying to replicate the fit of my old Italian bikes with a new(er) frame ---

If i posted this on the Road Cycling area, i would get half the responses ridiculing my stem and bar height and number of headset spacers i use - but i am much more comfortable with the bars close to saddle height


This is a recent build of mine and this is how it sits after a couple of "shakedown cruises" - i have shown a couple in progress pics before , but its for the most part done with a couple of small details

After i got the seat position sorted out, i was alarmed at how low the seat is relative to the frame and thought "Whoah!" - bike is too darn big"
But the flip side is actually riding it --- on the hoods, its comfy, - when i look down the hub is obscured by the bars, etc etc -- last night's ride i wished it wouldnt have gotten dark and i would have rode for 20 more miles

disclosure- i'm a big Clydesdale -- obviously not tall, but chunky -- in honor of another thread we have going, i would say i'm George Costanza'ish in physique- only more so




There are some mitigating factors, -- i typically use a zero offset post to keep my hip angle a little more open , but i havent aourced one yet as this one uses a big size i dont have laying around, -- and the cranks are too long - i normally use a 170 and these are 175's --- both of these changes will raise the seat somewhat, - but we're talking millimeters -- although they are things i feel on the bike -- the drops are super deep as well


Any of you gents ever ride a bike you felt was perhaps half a size too large and been happy with it? ---- as well - i also think in the back of my mind -- "Just ride the darn thing-- it feels good - quit worrying"
Any smaller and i'd be dealing with a truly odd looking stem/bars setup to get close to level


A comparison pic to the current "daily driver " i am trying to replace --- This Cannondale i've always felt was half a size too small rather than too big -- even though its the "comfort oriented" Synapse model , it has a slightly bigger drop to the bars and it puts a lot of weight on my hands when i ride it (pay no attention to the current seat angle -- i just put it on there - i robbed the seat to put on the Pin )




Pinarello is a 54, the Cannondale is a 51, but is sized strange due to the top tube - it is actually closer to a 52.5 or 53

---- I have a nice DeBErnardi in line to build with a triple that is a true 53/53 -- that may be my Goldilocks moment (Juuuust right ) --
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Old 03-01-16, 12:06 PM
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I am riding a Rivendell A. Homer Hilsen that is a 61cm. I can barely stand over it and I while from a modern fitting perspective, it my be a bit to big for me, I find it to be very comfortable. It also allows me to put the bars where they are comfortable without having too much stem exposed. I say buy the missing parts and give it a go.

[IMG][/IMG]

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Old 03-01-16, 12:10 PM
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I ride a large frame on all my bikes but I could probably be good on medium too. I'm 5'11" - I prefer the large.


Originally Posted by fender1 View Post
I am riding a Rivendell A. Homer Hilsen that is a 61cm. I can barely stand over it and I while from a modern fitting perspective, it my be a bit to big for me, I find it to be very comfortable. It also allows me to put the bars where they are comfortable without having too much stem exposed. I say buy the missing parts and give it a go.
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Old 03-01-16, 12:11 PM
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I like a French fit. According to one sizing app I should ride 57cm. Ha! I actually ride 62cm on most of my bikes, and up to 64cm on my touring-oriented machines. I like 'em tall and short.
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Old 03-01-16, 12:21 PM
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Well no I dont. But your bike looks fine. I'd just change the frame tubes to skinnier ones, switch out that threadless stem to quill, but keep the name of the bike company. Also, the other bike looks like what we used to call a (girls bike) with that sloping top tube.
All kidding aside, the fit geometry looks right to me. All my bikes have about 2 inches between bottom of saddle nose and top of stem (if you Drew a straight line).

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Old 03-01-16, 12:22 PM
  #6  
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I tend to like the feel of a larger bike as well. By modern fit, my Fred Sled fits me well with a 56 cm frame. Vintage bikes I usually look at 58 cm. My commuter though I believe is a 60, and it feels just perfect to me. I am 5'11. My Better Half usually has to have the French Fit at 4'11 - it's fairly difficult to find something that fits her.
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Old 03-01-16, 12:24 PM
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I'm 5'10" with a 33 inch inseam and 30 years ago this summer I was fitted for a 57. if I recall I was a hair shorter then. Nowadays I would probably be told I need a 54, or medium, or whatever the hell they're calling it today. I have 54-57 bikes but I feel best on a 57. Mainly because I don't have to have my saddle set way back screwing with my pedaling motion and I don't need a 120mm stem that slows the steering. A 57 actually feels more nimble to me.

One thing I've noticed is that in my early pre-internet group riding days when everyone rode bigger frames and had bars that weren't slammed a foot below the saddle, I never really heard anyone complaining about aches and pains like they do today. Now they have all these "comfort" bikes for poor Joe rider who gets numb hands and a sore neck. We used to call that a properly fitting bike.
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Old 03-01-16, 12:24 PM
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I'd say given that the Pinarello has a level top tube, and you have a "fistfull" of post showing, that bike fits fine. If you're used to a sloping tube, the appearance can deceive.

I have short legs and fit best on a 54-55, but I often ride a 56-57. I can get them to be comfortable with short crankarms and a slightly lower saddle height.
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Old 03-01-16, 12:26 PM
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I'm also riding a larger size now than I historically used. Rode nothing but 56 cm frames for 25 years; now ride 58 cm or thereabouts. As others have noted (and as Grant at Rivendell has preached for years), it's easier to get the handlebars up to saddle height with a larger frame. This has made a huge difference in ride comfort for me, as my neck and back are not what they used to be . . . .
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Old 03-01-16, 12:39 PM
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My favorite fixed is a 61. I am 6'0 and 33 1/4 inseam but I love the feel of this bike better than most I have rode and have great control. Even when jerking around riding in backwards circles
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Old 03-01-16, 12:43 PM
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I also rode a 61 that was around 4cm too big for me. Rode it all through highschool and years after.. my father bought it thinking I'd grow into it but didn't. I found it comfortable enough, later sold it and moved to a 58 and 56's. As long as you can lower the saddle enough to get it to the right height, there is not much difference when you're seated IMO. Just when you dismount.
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Old 03-01-16, 12:44 PM
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I am 5' 9" and ride a 23 ich (58cm) all the time. I have had a lot of people comment on the size of my bike. It works great for me. I have also ridden 21 and 22 inch bikes. Set the seat, put on the right stem and bars and ride!
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Old 03-01-16, 12:55 PM
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I have fairly short legs compared to my torso. Thus, I feel much better on a bike with a relatively long top tube. My bikes are all in the 56cm to 58cm range, and a 58cm. Standover height becomes an issue beyond 58cm. Based on the amount of seat post showing on most of my bikes, people might say the frames are generally a size too big, but it's what I need for my torso to feel right.
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Old 03-01-16, 01:11 PM
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I'm 172cm and most say I should ride a 53, but my most comfortable bike is a 55.
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Old 03-01-16, 01:19 PM
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Do you have clearance when you stand over it? If you can lift up the front and back wheel 1 inch, then you have the traditional fit that was taught when I first started cycling. If you can't lift it then the bike is dangerous for obvious reasons. That sizing method worked then and it still works now. Basically what you have there is what for many decades was considered a correctly fitted bike.

Generally speaking, a large frame is more comfortable, and 1" clearance was once recommended for touring and rough road rides. Racers might go for 1.5" of standover clearance, which is still a huge frame by today's standards.

Thanks to Greg LeMond and Mongoose BMX bikes, it became fashionable during the 80s to ride a frame ~1 inch smaller then had previously been considered proper. That trend continued to the present day. The advantage is that frames are lighter and stiffer, the main disadvantage is that it is less comfortable. (also bad for dirt roads)
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Old 03-01-16, 01:19 PM
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At 5' 10" with a 33.5 inseam (roughly) I ride 56-58cm. I'm sure by modern road racer estimations I'm riding too big a bike; but by my estimations I'm not.
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Old 03-01-16, 01:24 PM
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That looks like a fist full of seat post on a level top tube bike to me (include a little seat tube on your bike). Why do you think it is too big?
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Old 03-01-16, 01:25 PM
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I'm 5' 11.5" and like 24 inch classic bikes. I can take a slightly larger or smaller frame if the top-tube length is between 58 and 60cm.

I mostly ignore seat-tube length as long as stand-over height is acceptable. Top-tube length is far more critical.

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Old 03-01-16, 01:34 PM
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Originally Posted by Lazyass View Post
I'm 5'10" with a 33 inch inseam and 30 years ago this summer I was fitted for a 57. if I recall I was a hair shorter then. Nowadays I would probably be told I need a 54, or medium, or whatever the hell they're calling it today. I have 54-57 bikes but I feel best on a 57. Mainly because I don't have to have my saddle set way back screwing with my pedaling motion and I don't need a 120mm stem that slows the steering. A 57 actually feels more nimble to me.
I'm 5'10" with a 29"-ish inseam, and I've got one 57cm and one 23" bike. When I first started, all the online calculators put me in the low 50s, so I was looking at that and 21"-ish. The problem with short legs is having a long torso, I'd rather have the seat right on the frame and a top tube that fits my torso than the seat up in the air but cramped up top. Never felt comfortable until I decided to try out a bigger one, and it fit amazingly well despite not really being able to stand over it (not a big concern to me).
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Old 03-01-16, 01:43 PM
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Originally Posted by modelmartin View Post
I am 5' 9" and ride a 23 ich (58cm) all the time. I have had a lot of people comment on the size of my bike. It works great for me. I have also ridden 21 and 22 inch bikes. Set the seat, put on the right stem and bars and ride!
Same here: 5'9'', 30-inch inseam. Technium is 58cm seattube, 57cm toptube, 110mm stem and I couldn't be happier. I love the "swoop" of the larger frame. My 1980 Raleigh Grand Prix was 23 1/2', and it was perfect, too.

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Old 03-01-16, 01:48 PM
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I'm 6'0'' with a long inseam and I feel most comfortable on my 61-64cm road frames and large MTB frames.

In the few years it took to revise my ideal size up from 58cm I was also coming to terms with my preference for fat tires and fender mounts.

I experienced both processes as a kind of swallowing of pride (in what? aspiring to be "fast"?). Another one would be giving up clips and/or clipless.

In this regard the really big moment is realizing you want "upright posture."

I passed a grey mini-van the other day with one bumper sticker on it, it read simply "I used to be cool."



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Old 03-01-16, 01:50 PM
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Originally Posted by Barrettscv View Post
I mostly ignore seat-tube length as long as stand-over height is acceptable. Top-tube length is far more critical.
+1

If someone were to do the statistics, I think younger riders tend to ride shorter frames. As we get older, the body doesn't want to hunch over so much. Saddle to pedal length doesn't really change over time (at least not for me), but my bars are higher and stems are shorter as I get older. I sacrifice the speed that better aerodynamics gives me for comfort.
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Old 03-01-16, 01:55 PM
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I actually prefer the bigger bikes I've had. I'm a tad under 6'1" with a 35" inseam. Most online calculators put me at around the 59-60cm mark for the seat tube, and 57cm for the top. Right now, I've got a 58cm(st)x56cm(tt) Fuji Del Rey, a 60cm(st) x 57cm(tt) Raleigh Carlton, and a 62cm(st)x58cm(tt) Schwinn PDG Series 3. The Raleigh fits about perfect, but it shows a fair amount of seat post. The Fuji fits okay (a longer stem than 100m would make it more comfy), but it will be a flip for when spring rolls around, so I'm not too concerned about it. But the Schwinn just feels right (even with the 130mm stem).
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Old 03-01-16, 01:56 PM
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As I get older I find that most road bikes are simultaneously too big and too small for me. The top tube is too long and the head tube is too short. I "fixed" the fit on my Ridley pretty much the same way you have on yours except that mine has a sloping top tube so the lack of seat post extension isn't so pronounced.



My 2001 LeMond Buenos Aires is probably the "biggest" bike I own, in that it has the longest top tube, but my failure to embrace the LeMond fit philosophy shows in the giraffe-like stem I put on it. The resulting fit is great. If I went a size down to get the shorter top tube it would end up looking truly ridiculous.

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Old 03-01-16, 02:04 PM
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I'm around 5'8" with a 30" pant inseam. I'm most comfortable on a 55 or 56 (which I can barely stand over). My smallest bike is a 53 and eyeballing it, most people would probably say it fits me best, but it's the least comfortable.
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