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Official Trek DS owners thread

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Official Trek DS owners thread

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Old 06-22-14, 10:40 AM
  #26  
ROB DS
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Hey Steve, thanks so much for starting this Trek DS thread/forum, it has lots of informative postings..... especially for this newbie.

BIKE REVIEW - Anyone that's looking for a great exercise/training bike the Trek DS 8.4 takes a licking and keeps on ticking, I highly recommend this model. I last rode a bike (10 speed) in 1984 so I was quite surprised to see the incredible dynamics of the DS and the general evolution of cycling. I'm a soon to be 60 year old curmudgeon that's 6' 3" tall and rides the 21. My training rides are 10-18 mile hill sprints in the local neighborhood (asphalt roads), the elevation variations can be as much as 400'. Well 6 months & 1300 miles latter the bike continues to take the challenge. I typically now ride 65-70 miles a week and the 8.4 has been solid, dependable and a super cardio trainer.

PRODUCTS - I switched out the stock pedals for Smimano Pd-MX80 Platform Pedals, I feel more connected to the bike (less slippage) especially on the steeper climbs. My Bontrager Evoke shoes work great with these pedals, I also have a pair of Five Ten Freeriders but found them to have too much flex for training but plan to wear them for "fun" rides. I replaced the rear worn resin brake pads (Shimano M395) at about 1000 miles, does anyone have a recommendation for another type/brand of resin pads? I also replaced the rear tire (Bontrager LT3 700x38) at the same time. I like the feel of this size/make of tire for road riding but was a little surprised it didn't last longer. I'm very diligent about keeping the proper tire pressure (check 3X a week), any thoughts on this or any other tires? I also really like the Map My Ride app, I've got the basic (free) one.

CONS - My only complaint is that my neck does get stiff after 15 miles or so of riding, if I was a tad more upright (1"-2") perhaps this would eliminate the problem? The steerer tube appears to have a bottom spacer with a red line on it, this piece is about 1 1/4" long. I would like to raise the handlebars about 1" or so but I believe the tube is maxed out, would this require incorporating an extender or angle change? When I take the bike into the shop for the last warranty service I thought I would investigate my options. I do like to know the basic mechanics/nature of the beast (how does something work) before I go to the local bike shop, it helps me sort out what is valuable info and what is fluffy BS for the newbie. I sometimes feel they're more interested in the needs of their competitive road bike customers than those of the recreational baby-boomer hobbyist......... but maybe I'm wrong . I look forward to hearing solutions/suggestions from the posters, thanks again Steve.

Thanks, ride safe & have fun.
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Old 06-23-14, 01:03 PM
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Hi

Just wondering if anyone here has a 17.5 inch frame on there DS , I normally have a 19 inch frame but being 5'7 or even 5'8 on a good day the LBS are convinced that 17.5 would be better.

Any feedback would be a great help

Thanks
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Old 06-23-14, 01:36 PM
  #28  
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Howdy, Dual Sporters! I actually don't have my DS anymore, but I'm considering picking up a new one. I used to own a 2012 8.3 in the red, black, & white color scheme, and I commuted on it for about two years before switching to my touring bike.


Here's my old ride:



Like a previous poster, I'd also upgraded my brakes, going from the stock Tektros to a BB7 on the front (plus a larger rotor) and BB5 on the rear. I added the rack & fenders, replaced the stock grips with WTB Comfort Zone grips, added bar-end lights, and eventually ended up changing out both tires for slightly slicker tires with reflective sidewalls. I also added black, white, and red reflective tape to the frame for some extra visibility.


For those curious about sizing, I'm 5'10.5" and I ride a 19.5" DS (or mountain bike) very comfortably. I never had to adjust my saddle's fore/aft position, nor switch my stem or anything. The only issue I had with the bike was the fact that I never rode it anywhere that required me to unlock the suspension! That's no fault of the bike, though...that's all on me for not getting out more.

Originally Posted by Dylj View Post
Hi

Just wondering if anyone here has a 17.5 inch frame on there DS , I normally have a 19 inch frame but being 5'7 or even 5'8 on a good day the LBS are convinced that 17.5 would be better.

Any feedback would be a great help

Thanks
If you were one of my customers looking at a DS, I would definitely put you on the 17.5" first. If you test ride both, however, and you're dead certain that the 19.5" feels better to you, then so be it. At your height, 17.5" is what I would generally recommend. Perhaps you have a longer torso or arms than most to effect a longer reach, hence your prior 19" bikes. Different manufacturer's will often measure bikes differently, as well. Try to ride both sizes, if you can, and judge from there.
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Old 06-23-14, 01:51 PM
  #29  
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My wife has this 17.5" DS - 8.5 and just loves it, she is 5'7... Too small for me at 6'...
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Old 06-23-14, 03:57 PM
  #30  
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Thanks for the advice,

I know they only have the 17.5 inch in stock but I will see if I can try a slighty bigger bike if it seems like I have a problem I only have a 29inch leg so I guess thats why they thought of the smaller frame I would guess reach would be the factor on the decision.

Its a 2015 model too so I am geting quite excited

Will post a piccy if I get it
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Old 06-23-14, 05:48 PM
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I have a 2012 DS 8.4 with a 17.5 frame. It fits me fine and I'm 5'10" with a 29 inch inseam. I put an adjustable angle bar stem on it after I bought it and it is much more comfortable to ride. I'm with most of the others in saying that the larger frame would be too large but wait and try it out before you buy.
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Old 06-23-14, 08:25 PM
  #32  
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Pic taken last week of my 8.5 during one of my daily rides......,

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Old 06-23-14, 11:17 PM
  #33  
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Originally Posted by Sunsanvil View Post
For the absolute minutia obsessed, I've plotted the frames in terms of seat and head tubes to put some perspective on how they really differ.



A few notes:

- This is the 2013/2014 geometry (the inaugural 2012 models were notably different).
- The seat/head tube thickness is approximate only, but the lengths/angles are 100% accurate (at least per their specs).
- Top tube position is approximate (since I don't know precisely how far bellow the top of the head/seat tube it is).
- Their site continues to be wrong in quoting the 19.5" as 19.

Key take aways:

- Trek has cheated a bit in terms of ETT measurements: By steepening the seat tube angle on the smaller frames it artificially shortens the ETT. Assuming that each rider has a single ideal seat position relative to the cranks, the saddle will be slid rearward on its rails on a smaller frame compared to the next size up (and/or slid forward on a larger frame compared to the next one down). Taking my seat height of ~31" as an example, the change in seattube angle between two frames nullifies more than 1/4" of the ETT (in other words, while on paper there might be 1/2" difference between frames, in practicality there is only 1/4").
- They've also varied the headtube angle: steeper as you go up in frame size. While this has a negligible effect on reach, it does mean the trail gets progressively less.
- The top of the headtube relative to the cranks (the frames' reach and stack) looks to be sensibly proportional, if affording only minor deltas between sizes. Beware of going down a size to reduce your reach: you will be dropping down by more than you are coming in. You may in some cases be better off staying with the larger frame and swapping out the stem for a shorter one (and/or higher rise).
- The significant difference therefore between the frames is of course the standover and should likely be the driving factor when being fitted. As long as you have enough to be comfortable, but not so much as to have more seat post than tube showing, any two adjacent sized frames can, within reason, provide an identical fit between them (by minor change in stem).

The one detail I dont know is if Trek varies the amount of excess steerer on the various frame sizes. Anecdotally, looking at other folks' photos, I would say not (and I've yet to see anyone flip the spacers to drop the bars).

On balance, in my humble opinion, while I like my bike I think Trek can do better with their sizing. As demonstrated there is not a tremendous amount of actual size difference between them, which means that the posture for a tall person, even on one of the larger frames will be markedly different compared to shorter person on one of the smaller frames: the taller person will end up with the bars in a lower position relative to the saddle compared to a short person. This can of course be corrected to a certain extent with stem swaps, but I wonder if the starting point couldn't be a little closer to the mark.
I know I am late to mention this, but I really want to thank you for the effort you went to in producing this post.

Minutia is a wonderful thing.
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Old 06-23-14, 11:18 PM
  #34  
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Originally Posted by Eagle1 View Post
Pic taken last week of my 8.5 during one of my daily rides......,

22.5" frame, how tall are you?

Great pic too.
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Old 06-24-14, 01:24 AM
  #35  
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Originally Posted by ColonelSanders View Post
22.5" frame, how tall are you?.......snip
Colonel,

I'm 6'-4"...., and presently looking at my options that will allow me to raise the bars a little (1"-2") to enhance the longer ride comfort. Been considering adding an adjustable stem, or possibly a 40 degree stem in lieu of the existing 10 degree (hoping to utilize existing cables).
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Old 06-24-14, 05:28 AM
  #36  
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Originally Posted by ROB DS View Post
My only complaint is that my neck does get stiff after 15 miles or so of riding, if I was a tad more upright (1"-2") perhaps this would eliminate the problem? The steerer tube appears to have a bottom spacer with a red line on it, this piece is about 1 1/4" long. I would like to raise the handlebars about 1" or so but I believe the tube is maxed out, would this require incorporating an extender or angle change? When I take the bike into the shop for the last warranty service I thought I would investigate my options.
Without seeing at least a profile shot of you in your riding posture its really hard to say what the stiff neck is coming from. Getting a little more upright is the easiest thing in the world: swap the stem for one which is either shorter, steeper, or both. That may or may not address the issue though. Are you shoulders down with back and neck strait, or do you feel like a hunchback?

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Old 06-24-14, 05:29 AM
  #37  
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Originally Posted by sfrank View Post
I have a 2012 DS 8.4 with a 17.5 frame. It fits me fine and I'm 5'10" with a 29 inch inseam. I put an adjustable angle bar stem on it after I bought it and it is much more comfortable to ride. I'm with most of the others in saying that the larger frame would be too large but wait and try it out before you buy.
Please keep in mind the 2012s had different geometry, most notably longer ETT so if you were to rebuy today you may well find yourself on the 19.5.

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Old 06-24-14, 05:40 AM
  #38  
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Originally Posted by Dylj View Post
I know they only have the 17.5 inch in stock but I will see if I can try a slighty bigger bike if it seems like I have a problem I only have a 29inch leg so I guess thats why they thought of the smaller frame I would guess reach would be the factor on the decision.
I'm VERY leary of advice given like that when, magically, the one they recommend is the one they have in stock. That said, if you read my post on the geometry of the 2013/2014 frames, there in truth is not exactly a ton of delta between any two adjacent sizes (between the 17.5 and 19.5 there is only 6mm of stack and 10mm of actual reach difference, stock stems notwithstanding). As long as you dont have an excessive amount of seat post showing, and dont feel like you want to push yourself off the back of the seat, you may well be ok on the smaller of the two, but it would behoove you to try to find a store with the other size to at least try so that you wont be forever second guessing yourself.

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Old 06-24-14, 05:46 AM
  #39  
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Originally Posted by Eagle1 View Post
I'm 6'-4"...., and presently looking at my options that will allow me to raise the bars a little (1"-2") to enhance the longer ride comfort. Been considering adding an adjustable stem, or possibly a 40 degree stem in lieu of the existing 10 degree (hoping to utilize existing cables).
I'm not a fan of the adjustable ones, at least as a long term solution. They are great to borrow if the store will let you so that you can try a variety of pitches for a meaningful time with only one nut to turn, but I'd recommend settling on a fixed stem in the end (either way I doubt cable length will be an issue). Keep in mind there is such a thing as being too upright to the point where you are expending more energy than necessary and putting excess weight on your lower back and bum.

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Old 06-24-14, 08:35 AM
  #40  
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Originally Posted by Sunsanvil View Post
snip..... but I'd recommend settling on a fixed stem in the end (either way I doubt cable length will be an issue).....snip
I agree about the fixed stem, I'm all for minimizing weight & connection points.

My saddle adjustment is 'spot-on'...., but I still feel I have a little to much body weight up-front against the bars and my neck could be just a little better positioned to reduce long ride strain. Overall my 8.5 DS/22.5" frame has been a great match for my 6'-4" height, and I'm real close in getting that adjustment balance between my 64 year old legs, torso, and arm length for my style of riding.
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Old 06-24-14, 09:29 AM
  #41  
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Originally Posted by Eagle1 View Post
I agree about the fixed stem, I'm all for minimizing weight & connection points.
I hate to sound like a brand fan, but the RaceLites are nice, and available in a very decent array of lengths and angles.

I had been convinced my 21 was too big/too much reach for me. A week ago I tossed on a 60mm stem just to try...and while I at first thought I was more comfortable, I curiously end my 25 minute commute with pain in my lower neck/shoulders... which I didn't have before... humm....
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Old 06-24-14, 09:39 AM
  #42  
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..... was looking at the Race Lite 4-bolt/40 degree yesterday, going to my dealer later today to see what they have to offer.
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Old 06-24-14, 09:56 AM
  #43  
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I purchased a Trek "Dual Sport" while in Italy this spring, I am very happy with the purchase. With the standard 700x38 tire, it was great on both pavement and gravel trails. The bike will fit a larger 700x45 Mountain Bike tires and this would allow the bike to cover dirt trails with good results. See: DS Series - Trek Bicycle

I selected the basic model 8.1 with the rigid steel fork. It had a smooth and comfortable ride and was fast enough for longer rides. The saddle and pedals were well made and durable, I didn't need to upgrade anything.

My comments about the bike and cycling in Italy can be found here: http://www.bikeforums.net/hybrid-bic...ile-italy.html











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Old 06-24-14, 11:08 AM
  #44  
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Originally Posted by Sunsanvil View Post
I'm VERY leary of advice given like that when, magically, the one they recommend is the one they have in stock. That said, if you read my post on the geometry of the 2013/2014 frames, there in truth is not exactly a ton of delta between any two adjacent sizes (between the 17.5 and 19.5 there is only 6mm of stack and 10mm of actual reach difference, stock stems notwithstanding). As long as you dont have an excessive amount of seat post showing, and dont feel like you want to push yourself off the back of the seat, you may well be ok on the smaller of the two, but it would behoove you to try to find a store with the other size to at least try so that you wont be forever second guessing yourself.
To be fair as it's a new model they had none in stock so he said he would order in the 17.5 but if I felt is was too small he would order me in the 19

But thanks for the advice I bought a cube cross race and the top tube is so small and I get loads of pedal overlap and very uncomfortable to ride they were the only store that would take it in part exchange
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Old 06-24-14, 08:58 PM
  #45  
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Originally Posted by ROB DS View Post
Hey Steve, thanks so much for starting this Trek DS thread/forum, it has lots of informative postings..... especially for this newbie.

...

I look forward to hearing solutions/suggestions from the posters, thanks again Steve.

Your welcome! Glad to see this thread taking off!

And I see everybody is still debating frame fit vs body size

Being a dual sport, you get suspension, wider wheels and tires, more aggressive tire tread, and something closer to a mountain bike geometry!

See below the geometry differences (and similarities) between the FX, DS, and a Mountain Bike.



[TABLE]
[TR]
[TD]

[/TD]
[TD]DS[/TD]
[TD]X-caliber[/TD]
[TD]FX[/TD]
[/TR]
[TR]
[TD]

[/TD]
[TD](Dual sport)[/TD]
[TD](Mountain)[/TD]
[TD](Road Hybrid)[/TD]
[/TR]
[TR]
[TD]Actual Frame Size[/TD]
[TD]17.5"[/TD]
[TD]17.5"[/TD]
[TD]17.5"[/TD]
[/TR]
[TR]
[TD]B Seat tube angle[/TD]
[TD]74.0 [/TD]
[TD]72.5 [/TD]
[TD]74.0 [/TD]
[/TR]
[TR]
[TD]C Head tube length[/TD]
[TD]4.72"[/TD]
[TD]3.94"[/TD]
[TD]5.12"[/TD]
[/TR]
[TR]
[TD]D Head angle[/TD]
[TD]71.0 [/TD]
[TD]69.3 [/TD]
[TD]70.5 [/TD]
[/TR]
[TR]
[TD]E Effective top tube[/TD]
[TD]23.23"[/TD]
[TD]23.70"[/TD]
[TD]21.57"[/TD]
[/TR]
[TR]
[TD]F Bottom bracket height[/TD]
[TD]11.30"[/TD]
[TD]12.44"[/TD]
[TD]11.22"[/TD]
[/TR]
[TR]
[TD]H Chainstay length[/TD]
[TD]17.91"[/TD]
[TD]17.52"[/TD]
[TD]17.52"[/TD]
[/TR]
[TR]
[TD]I Offset[/TD]
[TD]1.50"[/TD]
[TD]2.01"[/TD]
[TD]1.97"[/TD]
[/TR]
[TR]
[TD]J Trail[/TD]
[TD]3.11"[/TD]
[TD]3.35"[/TD]
[TD]2.76"[/TD]
[/TR]
[TR]
[TD]K Wheelbase[/TD]
[TD]43.11"[/TD]
[TD]43.94"[/TD]
[TD]41.61"[/TD]
[/TR]
[TR]
[TD]L Standover[/TD]
[TD]28.11"[/TD]
[TD]30.12"[/TD]
[TD]28.94"[/TD]
[/TR]
[TR]
[TD]M Frame reach[/TD]
[TD]16.38"[/TD]
[TD]16.26"[/TD]
[TD]

[/TD]
[/TR]
[TR]
[TD]N Frame stack[/TD]
[TD]23.86"[/TD]
[TD]23.62"[/TD]
[TD]

[/TD]
[/TR]
[/TABLE]



Notice the DS compared to FX has longer effective top tube, wider wheelbase, and longer trail (all closer to the mountain bike) … which should provide a more stable and comfortable ride. Also notice the shorter head tube for more aggressive positioning.

So this more stretched out, and lower stance, will give it a different feel than an equivalent "typical" hybrid of the same size ... and therefore milage may vary on what frame size gives the perfect fit, vs say an FX frame!

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Old 06-24-14, 09:13 PM
  #46  
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On the same vain as my previous post, there are lots of threads on this forum asking something along the lines of:
“I want a hybrid, and plan to do some mild off-roading, should I get a DS or FX”


Consensus response (mostly from non DS owners) seems to be:
“Get the FX, as the DS is just unnecessarily overweight with front suspension, which is not needed for simple trails. And if you plan to do real trails, you need a real mountain bike anyways.”


So is a DS just an overweight FX because of front suspension? No! It is a Dual Sport, which takes some aspects from a road hybrid, and others from a Mountain bike - including frame geometry.

As one online review puts it “it comes close to being the master of compromise”.



And can it handle a reasonable trail? Here is a nice video I found on youtube featuring a DS 8.4:


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Old 06-24-14, 09:19 PM
  #47  
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Hi,

I looked at the DS and I had my heart set on one.

However, after further research I decided on the FX as I thought it was wiser to have a bike that does better on the place I ride 90% of the time, pavement and packed dirt trails.

Also I feel bad for anyone who bought a bike with the isozone. Trek has realized this was a gimmick that will cost owners more frame problems in the long run.
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Old 06-24-14, 09:25 PM
  #48  
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Originally Posted by Italia1970 View Post
I looked at the DS and I had my heart set on one.

However, after further research I decided on the FX as I thought it was wiser to have a bike that does better on the place I ride 90% of the time, pavement and packed dirt trails.
Agree, since the DS seems to be right in the middle, if you lean much more towards pavement, the FX is probably the better choice. Not sure the FX is the right weapon for those trails like in the video however!
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Old 06-25-14, 02:17 AM
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Eagle1
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Originally Posted by Italia1970 View Post
snip...... Also I feel bad for anyone who bought a bike with the isozone. Trek has realized this was a gimmick that will cost owners more frame problems in the long run.
What frame problems should I be watching for?
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Old 06-25-14, 05:14 AM
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Sunsanvil
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Originally Posted by steve_cay View Post
Being a dual sport, you get suspension, wider wheels and tires, more aggressive tire tread, and something closer to a mountain bike geometry!
Personally I'd have phrased it as "right in between" the typical fitness and cross country MTB postures since its equally far removed from either. And this I think is what has made the DS line so contentious when it comes to fitting (at least the 2013/2014s). Its like there is a tipping point where you either need to sit up OR go prone to be balanced.

Funny you mention the X-Cal because just the other day I was plotting its frames (DS on the left, X-Cal on the right, click to enlarge)...



Regrettably I cannot plot the FX because Trek doesn't provide the frame stack/reach figures (which, ironically, are what really matters when comparing postures). Anecdotally though, I would guess the FX's would end up looking similar to the DS, just with a taller cluster of head tubes pulled in a little (as to whether those taller head tubes raise the bars or simply make up for the shorter legs on the rigid fork....without those reach/stack figures we'll never know).

The obvious take away of this comparison is of course the fact that the xcals reach is longer and stack is lower (the angles and other metrics are more about handling and less about posture/fitting). But the visual also drives home the point that while the DS line offers what appears to be proportional sizing....it does so within a TINY window: literally less than 1" different in reach between the largest and the smallest, and less than 2" in stack! This is why I say that sizing on a DS is almost moot point: with the exception of stand-over its one step away from being a one size fits most. The X-Cal on the other hand has more than 4" of reach between the smallest and largest, and about and inch and a half in stack.

Note that while a 21" seat tube (for example) on a DS really is 21" (yes, I've measured), on the X-Cal they are all 1" shorter than the quoted bike "size". So on the "17.5" model, the seat tube is actually 16.5 inches (thank you Trek for making things even more convoluted). My guess is that they do this because some people over the years have gotten hung up on that size naming convention as if bikes were shoes (I've seen people say things like "In a Trek I take a 17.5").
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Last edited by Sunsanvil; 06-25-14 at 05:52 AM.
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