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Soma Smoothie is loooooooong - reckon my frame is too big?

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Soma Smoothie is loooooooong - reckon my frame is too big?

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Old 07-18-18, 07:31 AM
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aaronrob222
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Soma Smoothie is loooooooong - reckon my frame is too big?

I recently built a Soma Smoothie (56cm) and chose the frame size based on closest approximation of my current Jamis Aurora (55cm) that fits great. See the table below for how they differ:


Immediately, I felt way too stretched out. I swapped the Nitto Noodle bars I was using with a Specialized Short reach bars and also reduced the stem from 100mm to 90mm and flipped it up +7 degrees. It was a huge improvement (my elbows were now bent instead of being in the superman pose) but I still have sore shoulders after just a brief 30 minute commute. The pain is cumulative and after 24 hours of no riding, I still feel tense in my neck and shoulders.

A few additional factors: the Specialized Short reach bars max out at 40mm - I was previously riding 42. Does narrower bars cause hunching of the shoulders? Also, I'm coming from using very much Mary Poppins set up with Albatross bars on my Aurora. Reckon I'm just not used to the posture of drop bars?

In any case, I'm thinking of getting a 17 degree stem and go down to 80mm. Or, should I fess up and think about getting a smaller frame? I'm not a billionare, so that is bumming me out. See below for a couple of pics of me on the bike (which, to me, don't look at that odd!) I'm hoping some of you can see something that I don't or can gauge whether my situation is hopeless.


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Old 07-18-18, 10:48 AM
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Carbonfiberboy 
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Your fit is too cramped. Put it back the way it was. You want the angle between upper arm and torso to be as close to 90° as you can get it. If you can't bend your elbows with more reach, it's either because your arms are weak and unaccustomed to cycling, or because your saddle is too far forward and putting too much weight on your hands. Your hands should feel light on the bars. Looks to me like the frame is too small, not too large. You should have a set-back seatpost if it's not there already. On the hoods with a straight back, if you bend your elbows until your forearms are horizontal, your elbows should be in front of your knees or very close to being so.

The 17° stem is a good idea, but mount it so that it's level, not pointed up.

Have a look at the photos here: Numb Hands
That's more the way it's supposed to look.
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Old 07-18-18, 11:11 AM
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aaronrob222
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Originally Posted by Carbonfiberboy View Post
your saddle is too far forward and putting too much weight on your hands. Your hands should feel light on the bars. Looks to me like the frame is too small, not too large. You should have a set-back seatpost if it's not there already.

The 17° stem is a good idea, but mount it so that it's level, not pointed up.
Thanks, Carbonfiberboy. The idea that I have too much weight on the bars definitely feels true to my experience. I was pushing my saddle more to the fore because I was thinking reach was an issue but now see that was probably just shifting weight on the bars. I don't yet have a setback seatpost, but I'll look into that pronto. Meanwhile, I'm going to push my saddle as far back as it goes and see if that alleviates things a bit.
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Old 07-18-18, 01:27 PM
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While Height Extension Surgery (HES) is a bit more involved than Height Reduction Surgery (HES), it's still a viable option for many people (although that doesn't necessarily mean that it's the right choice for you). Keep it in mind as a solution of last resort if you don't achieve your proper fit by making bar, stem and seatpost adjustments.
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Old 07-18-18, 03:21 PM
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I think you aren't used to riding an aero position yet. You might be surprised to discover how much you love a radical aero position with -17 slammed stem after you get used to it. I know it's counter-intuitive but you can relieve pressure on your arms and shoulders by going lower, way lower. That was a huge discovery for me involving a major psychological hurdle and was a last resort strategy after trying a variety of high posture setups first. The Smoothie has excellent racing geometry and deserves to but set up for a racing position. It is a psychological battle more than anything else and you'll become obsessed with alternately wondering if your bike is too big or too small, whether your reach is too long or too short, whether or bars are too high or too low, etc. Don't give up. Just keep in the back of your mind the idea that as you get stronger and used to drop bars that you can go increasingly lower with greater comfort.
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Old 07-18-18, 04:21 PM
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Originally Posted by Clem von Jones View Post
I think you aren't used to riding an aero position yet. You might be surprised to discover how much you love a radical aero position with -17 slammed stem after you get used to it. I know it's counter-intuitive but you can relieve pressure on your arms and shoulders by going lower, way lower. That was a huge discovery for me involving a major psychological hurdle and was a last resort strategy after trying a variety of high posture setups first. The Smoothie has excellent racing geometry and deserves to but set up for a racing position. It is a psychological battle more than anything else and you'll become obsessed with alternately wondering if your bike is too big or too small, whether your reach is too long or too short, whether or bars are too high or too low, etc. Don't give up. Just keep in the back of your mind the idea that as you get stronger and used to drop bars that you can go increasingly lower with greater comfort.
Two great pieces of advice: avoid fit hypochondria and trying to embrace a lower bar. I did notice relief when in the drops. I also read on some random listicle of ways to relieve arm pressure is to lower the bars. I'm gonna flip my stem and see how it feels. Thanks, Clem.
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Old 07-18-18, 04:43 PM
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I often develop a mental fixation that a bike is either too big or too small, and it generally alternates between both too big and small on the same frame which goes to show you it's primarily a mental issue instead of the bike. After you find the correct setup and posture then you'll remember your previous wrong-size fixation and have a chuckle over it.
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Old 08-09-18, 01:07 PM
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I know that this thread is a little dated but...Your seat is too high. You appear to lack the ability to drop your heels to gain more power while climbing. I find it difficult to tell about you reach.
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Old 08-10-18, 10:55 AM
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Originally Posted by Brian25 View Post
I know that this thread is a little dated but...Your seat is too high. You appear to lack the ability to drop your heels to gain more power while climbing. I find it difficult to tell about you reach.
Ding ding ding! My thoughts exactly. He is toes down just sitting on the bike. If he drops the seat, he may actually feel more planted and stable on the bike, which may help some of the other issues. He received a lot of good advice in this thread, but the seat is too high to my eye.
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Old 08-10-18, 12:56 PM
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Also adjusting reach with moving the seat is probably the biggest no no in bicycle fitting. It just should never be done in any instance.
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Old 08-11-18, 11:14 AM
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Doesn't look too far a reach to my eye, but maybe you want a taller up angle shorter stem..

threadless open face are easy to buy, change, ride and try..
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Old 08-11-18, 12:15 PM
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Sore shoulders probably means the bars are too narrow. My wife had the same issue, after she got a proper bike fit she went from a 40cm to a 42cm bar, it was like night and day.
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