Go Back  Bike Forums > Bike Forums > Road Cycling
Reload this Page >

Myth? If you can see your front hub bike is too big/too small.

Notices
Road Cycling “It is by riding a bicycle that you learn the contours of a country best, since you have to sweat up the hills and coast down them. Thus you remember them as they actually are, while in a motor car only a high hill impresses you, and you have no such accurate remembrance of country you have driven through as you gain by riding a bicycle.” -- Ernest Hemingway

Myth? If you can see your front hub bike is too big/too small.

Old 05-28-07, 06:03 PM
  #1  
bssjackson
Senior Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Sep 2006
Location: Missouri
Posts: 89
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Myth? If you can see your front hub bike is too big/too small.

Wondering if thats a myth or fact?
bssjackson is offline  
Old 05-28-07, 06:06 PM
  #2  
urbanknight
In beaurocratic limbo
 
urbanknight's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: Los Angeles, CA
Posts: 22,456

Bikes: Specialized Allez, K2 Razorback

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Depends on where you're looking from. If you're referring to the statement that while in your hoods on the bike, the handebar should hide the front axle, that's a general guideline. It's not exact, and even then you might just need to move your saddle or get a different size stem.
__________________
"Well, I guess you can cut the arts as much as you want... Sooner or later, these kids aren't going to have anything to read or write about." (Richard Dreyfus as Glenn Holland)
urbanknight is offline  
Old 05-28-07, 06:06 PM
  #3  
JayC
Guadzilla
 
JayC's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2006
Location: Dialing it up to 400W
Posts: 3,686

Bikes: Pinarello F4:13 W/Campy Reecord & Blue RC6 W/SRAM Force

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
With all the varying geometries, I dont think this really holds true anymore.
JayC is offline  
Old 05-28-07, 06:27 PM
  #4  
ManBearPig
1/2 man,1/2 bear,1/2 pig
 
ManBearPig's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2004
Location: .
Posts: 1,122

Bikes: .

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
It usually works out that when fitted properly, the front axle will be at least slightly obscured by the bars in your line of sight, while on the hoods (not on the drops or any other position). Here's my theory. This rule and other rules like the KOPS rule (knee over pedal spindle) are not the objective of a good fit, they just happen to occur when the fit is good. In other words, there is no direct benefit to the knee being above the axle, nor the bars being aligned with axle in your line of sight, but when the fit is right they are usually true. I think this is the consequence of the fact that all road bikes have the same basic shape and design. Yeah, there are traditionals and compacts, and custom geometry, but if you look at and compare all bikes they all put the wheels, seat, pedals, and bars in about the same relative position to one another. So, it's just an observation that most of the time these rules hold up. It just works out that way. That's my theory.
__________________
...
ManBearPig is offline  
Old 05-28-07, 07:34 PM
  #5  
johnny99
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2005
Location: Northern California
Posts: 10,871
Mentioned: 2 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 102 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 2 Times in 2 Posts
Originally Posted by JayC
With all the varying geometries, I dont think this really holds true anymore.
I disagree. This "rule of thumb" has nothing to do with geometry. It mostly deals with the distance between your saddle and handlebar, which should be the same in any geometry. Also, it mostly tells you if your stem is the right size, not if your bike is the right size.
johnny99 is offline  
Old 05-28-07, 07:39 PM
  #6  
Clevor
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2005
Posts: 65
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
I had to do a doubletake myself, but I checked: your handlebar should obscure your front hub with your hands in the DROPS, not hoods (just checked the CC website). Generally, with hand on top the bar, the hub should be behind the bar; with hands on hoods, the bar should partially obscure the hub; with hand in the drops, the bar should obscure the hub. I've seen this bit mentioned on all the bike fitting articles in Bicycling Mag over the years, and it's also mentioned on the Giant web site.

However I don't use this as my first criteria for correct fit (as a knee jerk reaction). I fit everything else first and check this last. Darn if it isn't correct on all my 4-5 ATB and road bikes. I suspect many recreational riders use too short a stem or TT; you'd lose power if you were racing and you had to go ball's out. On ATB bikes, the bar should obscure the front hub with hands on the bar, of course.

Things you should check first is your saddle position with knee over the pedals at 3 o'clock (that plumb bob deal). Adjust the stem so the elbows are slightly bent with hands on the hoods, back as straight as possible. With hands in the drops, there should be at least 1 cm clearance between your elbow and knee with knee at 3 o'clock. It would be nice if the tip of your shoe clears the front tire on turns (but this varies depending on the frame). Then finally, check the bar/hub bit to see if it pans out. Works for me everytime.
Clevor is offline  
Old 05-28-07, 07:43 PM
  #7  
Nessism
Senior Member
 
Nessism's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2004
Location: Torrance, CA
Posts: 2,767

Bikes: Homebuilt steel

Mentioned: 7 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 162 Post(s)
Liked 22 Times in 20 Posts
Originally Posted by Clevor
I suspect many recreational riders use too short a stem or TT; you'd lose power if you were racing and you had to go ball's out.
Wonder if Sean Kelly and Indurain knew about this.
Nessism is offline  
Old 05-28-07, 08:27 PM
  #8  
atomsuite
Senior Member
 
atomsuite's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2005
Posts: 95
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
I agree with the geometry affecting this guideline. I have road bikes and track bikes. Could be the setup of the track bikes more than the geometry so maybe I should rephrase my disagreement by suggesting the use of the bike affects the guideline.
atomsuite is offline  
Old 05-28-07, 08:50 PM
  #9  
Psimet2001 
I eat carbide.
 
Psimet2001's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
Location: Elgin, IL
Posts: 20,623

Bikes: Lots. Van Dessel and Squid Dealer

Mentioned: 22 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 615 Post(s)
Liked 53 Times in 29 Posts
I find it is an appropriate technique for determining the appropriate stem size...not bike fit. I have used that technique with many riders over a lot of years.

As with all rules of thumb it is only good if it works for you. Only riding will tell you that.

Last edited by Psimet2001; 05-28-07 at 09:54 PM.
Psimet2001 is offline  
Old 05-28-07, 09:05 PM
  #10  
nitropowered
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2004
Location: Athens, Ohio
Posts: 5,104

Bikes: Custom Custom Custom

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Its a general rule of thumb that works for most recreational riders. For more competitive riders, i'd say the its at best a starting point but plan on changing out stems a lot to see what feels best. Most bike shops should have a bunch of stems of varying lengths that you can try out to see whats best.

Salsa's Size-o-matic stem is really nice to see what you want but the downside is its a trainer only rig. Can't go out and ride it (and wouldn't because if you ever used one, you'll know how flexy it is.)
nitropowered is offline  
Old 05-28-07, 09:47 PM
  #11  
oilman_15106
Senior Member
 
Join Date: May 2005
Posts: 6,900
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 2 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Myth.
oilman_15106 is offline  
Old 05-28-07, 11:01 PM
  #12  
hiromian
Gios my baby
 
hiromian's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2005
Posts: 1,135

Bikes: Gios 96, Mercier 72, Peugeot 74 X 2, Sears full suspension High rise banana seat, Kona 94, CCM Rambler 70s.

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
A bent fork throws the rule of thumb off a bit I find the rule to be true enouph for my bikes.
hiromian is offline  
Old 05-28-07, 11:12 PM
  #13  
Proximo
Senior Member
 
Join Date: May 2006
Location: Denver, CO
Posts: 750
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Depends entirely on how much you bend your back when riding and whether you are consistent about it. I'm not so sometimes I see the hub and sometimes I don't.
Proximo is offline  
Old 05-28-07, 11:24 PM
  #14  
Ernesto Schwein
64 49' N
 
Ernesto Schwein's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2006
Posts: 367
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Originally Posted by johnny99
I disagree. This "rule of thumb" has nothing to do with geometry. It mostly deals with the distance between your saddle and handlebar, which should be the same in any geometry. Also, it mostly tells you if your stem is the right size, not if your bike is the right size.

Tell that to Ballan:

http://www.cyclingnews.com/tech/2007...allan_wilier07
Ernesto Schwein is offline  
Old 05-29-07, 10:51 AM
  #15  
kls1891
zaza
 
Join Date: Aug 2006
Posts: 66
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Originally Posted by Clevor
I had to do a doubletake myself, but I checked: your handlebar should obscure your front hub with your hands in the DROPS, not hoods (just checked the CC website).
+1

That's what I've always heard as well. Drops, not hoods.
kls1891 is offline  
Old 05-29-07, 10:57 AM
  #16  
DocRay
Guest
 
Posts: n/a
Mentioned: Post(s)
Tagged: Thread(s)
Quoted: Post(s)
Originally Posted by Clevor
I had to do a doubletake myself, but I checked: your handlebar should obscure your front hub with your hands in the DROPS, not hoods (just checked the CC website).
Yep, drops, never hoods. Typical BF thread, tons of authoritative answers, completely wrong.
 
Old 05-29-07, 11:00 AM
  #17  
bdcheung
Carpe Diem
 
bdcheung's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2006
Location: MABRA
Posts: 13,149

Bikes: 2007 CAAD9; 2014 CAADX; PedalForce CG1

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 2 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Erm, if I shift up on my saddle, I can see the hub again. Does this mean my bike doesn't fit when I scoot forward because my butt is tired?
__________________
"When you are chewing the bars at the business end of a 90 mile road race you really dont care what gear you have hanging from your bike so long as it works."
ΛΧΑ ΔΞ179 - 15% off your first Hammer Nutrition order!
bdcheung is offline  
Old 05-29-07, 11:39 AM
  #18  
ggg300
Burnin' and Lootin'
 
ggg300's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2004
Location: SoCA
Posts: 2,713
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Originally Posted by DocRay
Yep, drops, never hoods. Typical BF thread, tons of authoritative answers, completely wrong.

The thing is a starting point at best...I got two bikes...one track...one road...

On the track I can see hub and then bars...on the road bike my see bars then a bit of hub...

The question is really about fit...and you'll get a ton of authoritative answers, some completely different.

http://web.archive.org/web/199802010...Debunking.html
http://www.peterwhitecycles.com/fitting.htm
ggg300 is offline  
Old 05-29-07, 11:45 AM
  #19  
Psimet2001 
I eat carbide.
 
Psimet2001's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
Location: Elgin, IL
Posts: 20,623

Bikes: Lots. Van Dessel and Squid Dealer

Mentioned: 22 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 615 Post(s)
Liked 53 Times in 29 Posts
Originally Posted by bdcheung
Erm, if I shift up on my saddle, I can see the hub again. Does this mean my bike doesn't fit when I scoot forward because my butt is tired?
Yes. If your bike fit then your butt wouldn't get tired. Duh....
Psimet2001 is offline  
Old 05-29-07, 11:56 AM
  #20  
cyclezen
OM boy
 
cyclezen's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2005
Location: Goleta CA
Posts: 3,122

Bikes: a bunch

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 44 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 1 Time in 1 Post
bike too big/too small? this gives no indication
'myth' ? yes, if used to 'decide' on some frame size/specs

'rule of thumb' for stem length? works for some and doesn't work for an equal number of others

for about 5 yrs, when I first started ridin to race, this 'rule of thumb' kept me from getting to a good position
some rules are definitely meant to be broken.
cyclezen is offline  

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

Copyright © 2018 MH Sub I, LLC dba Internet Brands. All rights reserved. Use of this site indicates your consent to the Terms of Use.