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I am looking for a bike that can handle me, I am 6'5 and 450 lbs.

Clydesdales/Athenas (200+ lb / 91+ kg) Looking to lose that spare tire? Ideal weight 200+? Frustrated being a large cyclist in a sport geared for the ultra-light? Learn about the bikes and parts that can take the abuse of a heavier cyclist, how to keep your body going while losing the weight, and get support from others who've been successful.

I am looking for a bike that can handle me, I am 6'5 and 450 lbs.

Old 03-17-15, 05:08 PM
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koikrazy2
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I am looking for a bike that can handle me, I am 6'5 and 450 lbs.

I am very overweight but strong and I want to increase my activity level but walking is not an option with the weight to knees ratio, I want to ride a bike every day. it is lower impact, less stress on my knees and a great way to safely burn calories, we have many miles of biking trails around my home (re purposed railroad lines that go for 50 miles in many directions) I used to ride everywhere in my youth 20 years ago. I am a Veteran that just wants to retake my life and I just want a bike that can handle the journey. What do you suggest?
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Old 03-17-15, 05:17 PM
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It is tough to find a bike large enough to handle your height. Most off the shelf options these days top out at 23 or 24", or about 61 cm. You probably need at least a 25" frame, or 64 cm and those are hard to come by.

Maybe look for an older bike with least a 25" frame or even better 27" and work with a bike shop to build it up with a mix of old and modern components.
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Old 03-17-15, 05:26 PM
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Hello, and welcome to the forums!

When selecting a bike the main thing you need to be concerned with is fit. You need a bike that you are comfortable on. As a tall rider, this means you need the largest frame size offered by most manufacturers at a minimum.

As for handing your weight, the main problem you will have is wheel durability - the standard machine built 32-or-fewer spoke wheels found on production bikes will probably not last long. Any bike you get should probably be upgraded to a 36 spoke (or more) handbuilt wheel, either when new or when spokes start breaking.

Also, consider checking out the 'Clydesdales/Athenas' subforum - it is geared for, and filled with tonnes of experienced bigger cyclists who can tell you what will and will not work well for you.

Best of luck!
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Old 03-17-15, 05:38 PM
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thank you I will. I am determined to rejoin the sport and become half the man I am currently.
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Old 03-17-15, 06:39 PM
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Consider a Worksman Urban cruiser?
ps. Also look at Zize Bikes.

Last edited by martianone; 03-17-15 at 06:48 PM. Reason: Ps
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Old 03-17-15, 07:05 PM
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First thing is to do some reading in this subforum:

Clydesdales/Athenas (200+ lb / 91+ kg)

Lots of folks in there that started where you are and are new people today. I started losing weight at 405. Got on a bike at 375. I've gotten as low as 252 last year. Hoping to drop below that by the end of this year.

At 375, I started on a Specialized Expedition Sport with 26 inch wheels. It worked well for me at that weight. I'm not sure how it would do at 450, but its a place to start. My brother has been up in the 450 range and he has a Workman bike that works for him when he rides it.

Bottom line, there is a bike out there for you. And many people that have been in the same position and have changed their lives on a bike. So, you've come to the right place
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Old 03-17-15, 07:08 PM
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The challenge will be finding a frame that can accommodate OP's height as well as his weight. Many off the shelf bikes top out at 23" or 61 cm, and OP will need a much larger frame. At least 25" or 64 cm, or larger.
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Old 03-17-15, 07:58 PM
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Originally Posted by koikrazy2 View Post
I am very overweight but strong and I want to increase my activity level but walking is not an option with the weight to knees ratio, I want to ride a bike every day. it is lower impact, less stress on my knees and a great way to safely burn calories, we have many miles of biking trails around my home (re purposed railroad lines that go for 50 miles in many directions) I used to ride everywhere in my youth 20 years ago. I am a Veteran that just wants to retake my life and I just want a bike that can handle the journey. What do you suggest?
I am 6'3 405 ( was 420 / 425 when started) I have been riding a Bianchi C-sport 3 for 3 mths and love it...I bought a beefier set of tires, but I would not even bother... the 32 spoke tires the bike came with, I rode a bit over 100 miles no issue... I now have 36 spoke rims / tire, and I can get all the details tomorrow... I also do not remember the frame size, but you can get one size up from what i bought I do remember that... ( I know I am not much help right now lol) It is strong Hydro-formed aluminium frame with disk brakes... I currently have like 225ish miles on it an no issues what so ever (Frame & Tires are perfect)... I have changed out the seat, (one a tad bit wider).. a longer stem, (to elevate some neck pain that i was having)... and the handlebar grips,( numbness in palms issue.) Key things are....Find a Local Bike Shop (LBS) that you like.... if you do not like the person, you will not want to go back if you have issues....I love my LBS owner... he jumps through hoops to help me out.. and treats me no different than a normal size rider. Another thing is, once you pick your bike... if you are uncomfortable in any way ... talk to your LBS guy... there is something he can probably do to help out in some way.... if you have any questions, please ask... I understand where you are at... as do many ppl here do. and remember have fun...
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Old 03-17-15, 09:18 PM
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I was over 400 at my heaviest, but only 5'3" so I didn't have the same issues with finding a bike big enough, just with finding one that was comfortable at all, because I have short legs and a long torso. I used the stock wheels and tires. I broke the rear axle at one point and the wheel had to be repaired. I didn't have any other issues though. I think the important things are to make sure your tires are properly inflated before every ride, and to only ride on paved surfaces.

I would also suggest, if you're trying to lose weight, that you start with a visit to the doctor to check for issues that could be affecting your weight, and then start tracking your food intake with a website like My Fitness Pal or Spark People. I've lost 180lbs in the past year and I think getting my diabetes diagnosed and treated made the biggest difference, along with changing my diet and tracking my calories. I lost 100lbs before I was really able to exercise.
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Old 03-18-15, 11:00 AM
  #10  
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I am 6' 3" and comfortably ride a 60cm frame road bike or the xl frame Raleigh 29er. I would look into a 29er and get it fit to you (29er is a mountain bike with 29 inch wheels) and then ride.

I started riding my 29er when I was almost 400 pounds, and am now riding a road bike at 360-365 pounds.

Good luck in your journey.

Find a local bike shop and develop a relationship with them as they will help you out in selecting bikes, components, accessories, and bike fitting, and also they may have a used bike or a floor model that is a year or so old that they would sell at a discounted price.

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Old 03-18-15, 11:58 AM
  #11  
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I started riding at 365, after losing about 70 pounds to get there through diet and walking. While cycling alone won't be huge in weight loss without other changes, it can be a great motivator to also keep the diet in check.

I like the idea above of a 29er mountain bike, but 2 things to consider.

1) For a given spoke count and rim style etc, a 26" wheel will be stronger than a 700c wheel. This however may be a border issue, since a 26" mountain bike may not be available in a size appropriate for you.

2) If you look at mountain bikes, they will all have suspension. In my opinion, get a bike where you can lock out the suspension, since it is nothing but a useless energy absorber for riders in the mega-clyde range like us.

When you do start riding, don't worry if you can't ride very far... distance will build pretty quickly as long as you are consistent. Pace yourself so that you are pushing, but not hard enough to demotivate. I think cycling is one of those things that you have to enjoy to make it work. The joy of cycling in your early years will come back fairly soon, but for the short term, celebrate small things on your way back.
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Old 03-18-15, 05:23 PM
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What is your bike budget?

Also keep in mind that no matter what seat you put on a bike, it is going to hurt.....at first. Don't get sucked into putting a tractor seat on a bike because of your size.

An 80's or 90's Mountain bike newly overhauled with newly tensioned wheels and road tires would be perfect , in my opinion.
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Old 03-19-15, 01:40 AM
  #13  
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People are gunna freak cus of your weight but the important thing is that you get a sturdy bike and don't go off curbs, hit potholes, do jumps, or the like... and you'll probably never have an issue.


I bought a cheap ass Walmart steel 24spd tandem new for $250 to see if my wife liked it... I weighed 250 & she weighed 180 when we used to ride it; that comes to 430lbs.
The only issue it had was the crapy freewheel hub wheel died on the first hill, and I replaced it with a standard 36 spoke mountain 135mm wheel and have probably put nearly a thousand miles on that bike. It maybe popped a spoke. Yah it's flexy and I keep waiting to see a weld give-out but it hasn't happened yet; the only beefy looking thing on it, is the fork.

Your weak link is likely the rear wheel (depending on the bike); 26" rim brake would be the strongest platform, so on that you could probably be fine with a standard (medium quality) 36 spoke wheel. Disc wheels and/or 700/29r wheels may need a higher spoke count or higher quailty hub/spokes for the rear wheel, but you could just see how the hold up and upgrade if needed.

I think aluminum road frames suggested by other posters might be too flexy under you; the best way to find out is test ride; that's one thing I always regret not doing more...

At 6'5" (like me) a properly fitting bike would be 62-64cm frame for road sizing and xxl ( 23-25"?) for mountain for most bikes.

Let me know what kind of bike your thinking of and I'll post bikes that are likely to fit or easily made to fit... Sizing kinda funny/weird, like some 29r's run big; I am on a large and all it needed was a longer seatpost and is big as my 62cm bike.

I like the Surly Long Haul Trucker for you, it is a really versatile bike; 64cm with 700 road wheels, and 62cm with 26" mountain wheels should be a little stronger. Either should fit you. The frame tubing is thicker to pre-tune them for fully loaded touring, that might work good for you, but again test ride test ride test ride.

Welcome and thank you for your service.

Jesse
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Old 03-19-15, 04:52 PM
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Originally Posted by MRT2 View Post
The challenge will be finding a frame that can accommodate OP's height as well as his weight. Many off the shelf bikes top out at 23" or 61 cm, and OP will need a much larger frame. At least 25" or 64 cm, or larger.

I dont believe this is correct in all circumstances. I am that height and by no means require a 64 cm frame. I ride a 59/60 with ease.
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Old 03-20-15, 09:34 AM
  #15  
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Originally Posted by vesteroid View Post
I dont believe this is correct in all circumstances. I am that height and by no means require a 64 cm frame. I ride a 59/60 with ease.
I'm with you, I'm the same and am on a 58 with spacer stack and would ideally like a 60-61.
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Old 03-21-15, 01:46 AM
  #16  
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Welcome to the Forum. I'm 6'6" and have been very tough on my bikes. I was busting spokes on my mountain bike. I ended up putting 40 spoke tandem wheels on and was amazed at how strong and stiff they were. 36 spokes are fine as well with a well built wheel. at 330 I was riding steel framed 23" raleigh 3 speeds, but when I got my 66cm Gazelle impala with 28" wheels I was amazed at the solid feel of a large frame and wheels. Frame size is determined by more than height. inseam is a bigger factor. I have a very long torso and am cramped and need longer handlebar stems for anything shorter than a 59cm top tube. You can pick up a decent used schwinn 25 to 27" frame as a good starting bike for a road bike. Mountain bikes are also a great bet as has been suggested. Best of luck to you on your riding. Nothing makes me feel lighter than passing a skinny guy going downhill. Uphill is a bear still, but I just burn more calories.
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Old 03-22-15, 05:09 PM
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I'm 6'5 and ride a 60CM frame with some tweaks - longer stem, setback seat post. OP, I'd recommend getting an older XL or XXL steel frame mountain bike and having a set of wheels built up for it with at least 36 spokes (maybe 40) front and rear. For road bikes, the Cannondale CAAD frames are quite strong and can handle your weight - but again, you'll need new wheels. I started riding on a CAAD9 and had Velocity DeepV wheels in 36 spokes built up. I was as heavy as 410 and I've had no issues.
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Old 03-22-15, 07:12 PM
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KHS 747? Steel, built for Clydes, comes in huge and super-huge sizes.

KHS Bicycles :: Flite 747


(Too big for me at 6'7, but I'm all arm and torso and so have my bars relatively far down from my saddle and get length taht way)
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Old 03-22-15, 07:14 PM
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Originally Posted by expatbrit View Post
KHS 747? Steel, built for Clydes, comes in huge and super-huge sizes.

KHS Bicycles :: Flite 747


(Too big for me at 6'7, but I'm all arm and torso and so have my bars relatively far down from my saddle and get length taht way)
Oh. Apparently just 'huge' now.
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Old 03-27-15, 11:51 AM
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I'm 6'6" and have a Cannondale 25" framed touring bike with 36 spoke wheels. It's as strong as anything out there. Put on some 700-38 tires and a spring seat and ride smooth bike paths only until you can down closer to 300.
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Old 03-27-15, 12:19 PM
  #21  
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Originally Posted by bassjones View Post
I'm 6'5 and ride a 60CM frame with some tweaks - longer stem, setback seat post. OP, I'd recommend getting an older XL or XXL steel frame mountain bike and having a set of wheels built up for it with at least 36 spokes (maybe 40) front and rear. For road bikes, the Cannondale CAAD frames are quite strong and can handle your weight - but again, you'll need new wheels. I started riding on a CAAD9 and had Velocity DeepV wheels in 36 spokes built up. I was as heavy as 410 and I've had no issues.
Having to add non-standard parts to a bike to make it fit is a pretty sure sign that the bike does not fit.

'26" waist jeans fit me fine - I just need to sew in an extra 12" of fabric.'

I think a lot of people on either end of the height spectrum are OK with marginally bad fitting bikes because they don't know what it feels like to ride a good fitting bike.
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Old 03-27-15, 12:25 PM
  #22  
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Originally Posted by Wilfred Laurier View Post
Having to add non-standard parts to a bike to make it fit is a pretty sure sign that the bike does not fit.
It's standard procedure in bike shops when doing a proper bike fit to make changes to the stem length and seatpost setback. Changing those things make the bike fit better, it does not make them a "bad fitting bike".
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Old 03-27-15, 01:55 PM
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Originally Posted by Wilfred Laurier View Post
Having to add non-standard parts to a bike to make it fit is a pretty sure sign that the bike does not fit.

'26" waist jeans fit me fine - I just need to sew in an extra 12" of fabric.'

I think a lot of people on either end of the height spectrum are OK with marginally bad fitting bikes because they don't know what it feels like to ride a good fitting bike.
Originally Posted by dr_lha View Post
It's standard procedure in bike shops when doing a proper bike fit to make changes to the stem length and seatpost setback. Changing those things make the bike fit better, it does not make them a "bad fitting bike".
If you want a bike to fit 100% immediately...get a custom built bike. Otherwise...bike manufacturers make bikes in a range of sizes and each size will fit a range of folks with adjustments possibly needed for perfect fit.

Example: I ride a 52 but I need to shorten the stem from the standard stem as my upper body and arms are shorter. Someone else may need longer cranks than comes with because of longer legs. Manufacturers cannot make bikes in sizes of small increments because that would be cost prohibitive.
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Old 03-27-15, 02:07 PM
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Originally Posted by dr_lha View Post
It's standard procedure in bike shops when doing a proper bike fit to make changes to the stem length and seatpost setback. Changing those things make the bike fit better, it does not make them a "bad fitting bike".
To a point, yes. But if the setback required is more than the standard 1 to 1-1/2" (like adding a BMX drain pipe style), then you are not really adjusting the reach to the bars - you are adjusting the effective seat tube angle. Similarly, if a 160mm high-rise stem is what the shop says is 'necessary', then it would almost certainly be better to find a bike with different dimensions, such as a longer top tube and/or taller head tube.
These modifications are most commonly made by shops when the brands they carry do not have a true 'extra large' bike, or sometimes if they just don't have one in stock.

The difference between the common adjustments and part swaps that I and most would view as normal and those changes that are likely indicative of a bike that is the wrong size is degree. If you bought a bike that came with a zero-setback post, and decided you would be better off an inch further back, that is on thing... then there are totally ill fitting bikes like the one in this thread:
http://www.bikeforums.net/bicycle-me...nywhere-2.html

When I read bassjones' statement that a bike can be made to fit with a stem swap and setback seatpost, I assumed he meant some weird custom setback post, but I realize now this was probably a bad assumption. However, I stand by my statement that if non-standard parts are required to approximate good bike fit, a better result can be achieved by replacing the frame with one closer to the ideal for the rider.
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Old 03-27-15, 08:52 PM
  #25  
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OK, when you said "non-standard parts" I thought you meant anything that does not come stock on a bike.

I would agree that funky long/short stems, stem risers, weird seat posts are not a good idea. However, the fact is that bikes are made to fit a certain body type, and not everyone conforms to that, swapping out stems and seat posts is sometimes necessary to get a correct fit, picking another bike or another frame size isn't enough.
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