General Cycling Discussion Have a cycling related question or comment that doesn't fit in one of the other specialty forums? Drop on in and post in here! When possible, please select the forum above that most fits your post!

New rider

Old 08-30-17, 04:28 AM
Thread Starter
Join Date: Aug 2017
Posts: 1
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
New rider

How do you determine the right size of bike for a 6ft tall 170 pound male?
Massivecity is offline  
Old 08-30-17, 05:26 AM
Senior Member
Maelochs's Avatar
Join Date: Oct 2015
Posts: 14,593

Bikes: 2015 Workswell 066, 2017 Workswell 093, 2014 Dawes Sheila, 1983 Cannondale 500, 1984 Raleigh Olympian, 2007 Cannondale Rize 4, 2017 Fuji Sportif 1 LE

Mentioned: 143 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 7169 Post(s)
Liked 2,626 Times in 1,432 Posts
Sorry .... there is no bike that will fit you. Better take up the piano or something.

No, seriously ... there is no size of bike that will fit you because Every bike is a different size. I'd say generally a 58-cm frame, but some 58s will be way too long and some way too cramped, and some 56s perfect and some tiny ....

Every single bike frame has slightly different geometry, and often that geometry changes as the sizes for a specific model change---so you might ride a 56 of one bike, and think, "If it were just a little longer ..." but the 58 has a different head- and top-tube length and head-tube angle and fits your body completely differently.

Then, of course, every body is different. Are your legs proportionally shorter or longer than your arms for your height? Some have long arms, long legs or long torsos .... or, some parts are long and others short. Not everyone can wear the same size clothing even if they are the same height.

How flexible are you? What style of riding do you like? it takes a lot of core strength to be comfortable laid out like a Tour de France pro rider, but for riders who are fit enough, some find it very comfortable. If you get a bike designed to be ridden in that posture, you might never be really comfortable ... but if you get a bike designed to be ridden more upright, you might never be able to get into that low, long posture you really want.

This tool ( can Help you get some idea of your proportions and what Might fit. Some folks have really good results---some get ridiculous responses. It is just a specialized calculator... it can't see what you look like and can't tell how you ride. I have had great results, so I recommend it, but with a warning.

Generally ... start looking at bikes in 56- to 58-cm frame size. That will usually mean a top tube (or an effective top tube, or a virtual seat tube (see the problems multiplying already?)) of about 56- 58 cm. Most bike shop employees will probably stick you on a 58 if you are about six feet tall.

Remember a couple things .... how a bike feels in a store, how it feels on a five minute test ride, and how it feels after two hours are all very different. Also, the more you ride, the more you will develop the specific muscles which make riding more comfortable.

Your best bet is to ride as many different bikes as possible in a specific price range/component level, and picking the one which feels best.

Also, if you are brand new to cycling and not sure how committed you might be .... don't buy the $1500 bike. Get the $500 bike or, if you have any bike-savvy friends, help them pick out a used bike.

Two possibilities: One, you won't really like riding, won't do it enough to make it feel good, and will sell the bike for a huge loss in a few years when you get tired of stepping over it in the garage;


You will love riding, and will ride regularly, and in a year will know what kind of bike would really suit you and make riding even more of a joy---and at that point, you don't want to be stuck with an expensive "wrong" bike which you cannot afford to replace with the right one.

As for the size though .... look at 56- and 58-cm frames first.
Maelochs is offline  
Old 08-30-17, 05:53 AM
Senior Member
bruce19's Avatar
Join Date: Jul 2006
Location: Lebanon (Liberty Hill), CT
Posts: 8,298

Bikes: CAAD 12, MASI Gran Criterium S, Colnago World Cup CX & Guru steel

Mentioned: 6 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1655 Post(s)
Liked 1,162 Times in 677 Posts
As Maelochs said, probably something like a 58. But, there are other dimensions that need to be considered, such as inseam and reach. If you are buying from an LBS try to find one that will give you a basic fit before choosing a bike. If you're buying on-line that Competitive Cyclist site is good. Be aware that you can probably fit in a range of sizes. I am 5'9" (thanks to age) with a 32" inseam and I can ride from 54-58. Of course stem length changes with the extreme sizes. Back in the day you would measure your inseam wearing only socks, convert to cm and multiply that number by .667 and you'd be in the ballpark. Different these day due to sloping TT.
bruce19 is offline  
Old 08-30-17, 06:19 AM
Senior Member
brianmcg123's Avatar
Join Date: Oct 2002
Location: TN
Posts: 1,284

Bikes: 2013 Trek Madone; 2008 Surly Long Haul Trucker

Mentioned: 7 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 361 Post(s)
Liked 59 Times in 35 Posts
Test the 58 and 60 and see which one you like. Get a fitting done.
brianmcg123 is offline  
Related Topics
Thread Starter
Last Post
Road Cycling
08-03-12 06:07 PM
Road Cycling
06-24-12 07:21 PM
Clydesdales/Athenas (200+ lb / 91+ kg)
05-19-12 07:49 AM
Road Cycling
06-18-11 10:36 PM
Road Cycling
08-22-10 11:25 AM

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Contact Us - Archive - Advertising - Cookie Policy - Privacy Statement - Terms of Service - Do Not Sell or Share My Personal Information -

Copyright © 2023 MH Sub I, LLC dba Internet Brands. All rights reserved. Use of this site indicates your consent to the Terms of Use.