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a road bike for a girl

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a road bike for a girl

Old 10-09-04, 12:31 PM
  #1  
joao
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a road bike for a girl

hello everybody. i want to buy a road bicycle. the problem is that i'm a girl and the offer is very limitated.
i'm thinking in a cannondale because everybody sais that they are very good. there are only two models avaiable: (r500 tiagra) and (r1000 ultegra). i would like somethig better than tiagra but not so expencive as ultegra.
my question is, there is substantial diference between men and womens geometry frame? aparently both frames seems to be identical. in the same size, of course.
can you help me?

sorry for the english, i'm spaniard.
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Old 10-09-04, 12:45 PM
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There are differences in geometry but those differences may or may not be suitable to your body type. One of the major differences is that women are assumed to have longer legs and shorter torsos than men of the same height, so women-specific frames generally have shorter top tubes. However, there are men's models that have shorter top tubes as well. Don't limit yourself to women's models. Have a good bike shop fit you and go with the size/geometry that works best for you.
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Old 10-09-04, 12:56 PM
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Men may wish that women have proportionally longer legs, but as a leg lover, I can safely say that, unfortunately, the opposite is true.
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Old 10-09-04, 08:10 PM
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Specialized has a line of bikes designed "by women for women" called Dolce. I don't know what the price range you could find on the street. The website (www.specialized.com) prices start at $800, though that model is Sora/Tiagra. There's a model for $1300 with 105/Ultegra.

I have a Specialized Allez that I love, but I'm a guy, so I haven't ridden this bike - can't give any first-hand impressions.
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Old 10-09-04, 08:26 PM
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I'm a petite female riding an xs giant ocr2. It fits well. I considered the OCR3 but could not reach on the soras. It has tiagra/105. Nice and fast. Very good value, I think.
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Old 10-09-04, 08:51 PM
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As stated, women tend to have proportionally longer legs than men, so that a frame with a certain height (which is the common measurement of frames) designed for women may have a shorter top tube than a frame designed for a man. Someone said this isn't true, however my wife and I are close to the same height with me being slightly taller, and her legs are longer than mine. Walking with her drives me nuts, as her stride is longer than mine. Actually it annoys both of us, but I have the kids on my side so she has to slow down. Having said that though, she test rode a Specialized Dolce, which is designed for women, but was more comfortable on an Allez. Women's Specific Designs may not be the best for you, so don't limit what you test ride to WSD bikes.
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Old 10-09-04, 11:46 PM
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CdCf said. "Men may wish that women have proportionally longer legs, but as a leg lover, I can safely say that, unfortunately, the opposite is true."

Depends on the person. I am male and have short legs for my height (compared to an average 5'8" male). My wife is 2" taller than I am but has legs 3" longer. So, she has a taller bike frame and; even though she has long arms, she needs a shorter stem. My daughter is a couple inches shorter than I am and has legs less than an inch shorter. But, with shorter arms needs a shorter stem on the same frame size as mine. (All three bikes are the same model.)

There is a lot of variation between people. Generalizations are only generalizations.

This doesn't answer the original question.

If you don't have access to a good bike shop to help find a bike that will fit (and not try to stick you on something that just isn't right for you), then learning all you can about what makes for a good fitting bike will help you decide. If you are 5'6" (168 cm) to 5'10" (178 cm) your options are much greater than someone (male or female) who is 5'4" (163 cm), or less.

Mike
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Old 10-10-04, 01:13 AM
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Test ride any bike you plan to purchase! Make sure it fits. That you are comfortable on it! Do your shoulders ache? Do you have to really lift your head or are you..comfortable!?? Do not be pressured into getting a bike that the sales persons wants to sell! Oh..and get a quality helmet! Ride often!

Pedal On,

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Old 10-10-04, 01:21 AM
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You may wish to check out these recent threads...
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Old 10-10-04, 05:27 AM
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There's a very nice woman-specific Fuji road bike that I'd like to get my wife, but she likes her (non women-specific) Trek 520 too much. I can't remember the model, but it was one of their better road bikes with a steel frame. It'll stand out in their catalog if you can get your hands on one or check their Web site. I can't remember the component group.

Al
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Old 10-10-04, 06:42 AM
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Take a look at Terry Bicycles: https://www.terrybicycles.com/

Designed by and for women.
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Old 10-10-04, 08:47 AM
  #12  
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Several have mentioned the Specialized bikes already.
Trek has WSD (womens specific design)
Also check out Bianchi. My wife bought a Bianchi Eros Donna which was woman specific.

Major differences include shorter frame geometry (already stated by many), shorter cranks, narrower handlebars, and last but not least women specific saddles.
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Old 10-10-04, 06:27 PM
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The last poster highlighted the major differences that exist in theory between "women bikes" (or WSD) and "men bikes".
In theory, the top tube of a woman bike should be shorter than the top tube of a man bike of the same size. But that's not always the case.

Moreover, the bike shop could "womanise" any bike to a point by installing a shorter stem, a woman saddle, narrow handlebars, and short cranks. The stem and saddle swaps are trivial and should be free (unless you go to a higher quality). Changing the handlebars and cranks take more time, so they might want to charge some labour for that.

All in all, you left out the key element: your size. If you are a 1.7 - 1.8-m woman, stay away from WSD designs, because they are almost always made for short to medium size women. On the other hand, if you are a 1.4-1.6 m woman, the WSD frames could be the only ones that fit.


And BTW, for those who are 1.4 - 1.6 m men, than maybe a WSD frame would be a good starting point, with the LBS swapping in a man saddle and wider handlebars.
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Old 10-10-04, 10:32 PM
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Originally Posted by Michel Gagnon
The last poster highlighted the major differences that exist in theory between "women bikes" (or WSD) and "men bikes".
In theory, the top tube of a woman bike should be shorter than the top tube of a man bike of the same size. But that's not always the case.

Moreover, the bike shop could "womanise" any bike to a point by installing a shorter stem, a woman saddle, narrow handlebars, and short cranks. The stem and saddle swaps are trivial and should be free (unless you go to a higher quality). Changing the handlebars and cranks take more time, so they might want to charge some labour for that.

All in all, you left out the key element: your size. If you are a 1.7 - 1.8-m woman, stay away from WSD designs, because they are almost always made for short to medium size women. On the other hand, if you are a 1.4-1.6 m woman, the WSD frames could be the only ones that fit.


And BTW, for those who are 1.4 - 1.6 m men, than maybe a WSD frame would be a good starting point, with the LBS swapping in a man saddle and wider handlebars.
Good points all! Yes what I meant to say is this is how the manufacturers spec. the bikes different not that women all have those specific differences from men in every case. As with men, bikes for women should fit them well. It helps to know a competent (and trusted!) LBS sales person who can help out with bike fit.
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Old 10-11-04, 02:48 AM
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Trek manufacturers a road bike specifically designed for women.
It's the Trek model 5200WSD. I'm not sure what makes it specifically for women, although you can obviously check the specs or write Trek with any questions.
The web link follows. Good luck with your new bike.

https://www.trekbikes.com/bikes/2004/road/5200wsd.jsp
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Old 10-11-04, 11:11 AM
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I'm short at 5'2" and I test rode Trek, Fuji and Specialized before I bought the Dolce. My lbs guy said that he's successfuly fitted taller females on the Specialized Allez. But for someone my size, the fit is perfect on the Dolce. I liked the Trek too, but I didn't want the smaller wheels. I'm VERY happy with my Dolce. The only neg. I have is that I didn't check whether it would take a rack or not; and it doesn't. Just something to keep in mind if you may want to do a little touring on it.
Do try to ride as many bikes as possible. And do some research first. The one lbs where I went to try the Fuji had a small Fuji Ace, not a WSD, and I felt very stretched out on it, and the young guy was trying to convince me it was a WSD, because it was small. Sheesh.
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Old 10-11-04, 01:18 PM
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Originally Posted by overthere
The only neg. I have is that I didn't check whether it would take a rack or not; and it doesn't. Just something to keep in mind if you may want to do a little touring on it.
You may be able to mount P-clamps to attach some lighterweight racks. I wouldn't suggest going all out and carrying full-touring weight on that frame though. Search the forums for possible suggestions.
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Old 10-12-04, 08:03 AM
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Women with shorter upper bodies often go with smaller frames for the shorter top-tube length. While that can work, small frames suffer from design compromises which will make the bike uncomfortable; not only for women, but shorter men too.

When my wife started doing rides of 40+ miles, she complained that she felt too far forward. So I measured her knee position and found that it was almost an 1" forward of the pedal spindle. That was a big surprise since her seat post had an inch set-back. Something was wrong since her bike is built on a touring frame and they typically have around 72 deg. seat tube angle. I measured her bike's seat-tube angle and came up with 74 deg. I checked the Trek site and sure enough, Trek 520's have aggressive angles and in her frame size and it's 74 deg. That's close to time-trial bike territory I believe. My old touring frame, which I no longer ride, is 72.5 deg (measured). My new cyclocross/randonneur/Audax frame has 73 deg. which puts my knee about 0.8 inches behing the pedal spindle with a 15 mm seat post set-back. A lot depends on your leg structure.

My fist thought was she needed a new bike, so I called an independent touring frame builder to see what gives and found out that smaller frames have to have steep seat tube angles in order to get adequate toe clearance with the front wheel. The only option was to get more seat post set back. The Titec Hell Bent was the only seat post with more setback. It's advertised at 1.5 ", but I measure 2".
Now she's happy. We left the stem length alone as she seems to be OK with the weight distribution.

Al
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Old 10-12-04, 09:34 PM
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Howdy

My girlfriend has a Fuji Newest for Ladies.
It is a great Female specific bike. The gemotry is specific and it is built size specific as well. What I mean by that is if you are of a short stature most large manufacturers dont "shrink" all parts, such as the chain stays. They just bring down some of the parts from the rest of the Bike line.
The Fuji Newest my Girlfriend has uses 650 wheels instead of 700 which is a fine example of proper sizing.
It seems that alot of Cannondale dealers also have the fuji line so I would do a test ride.

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Old 10-12-04, 11:58 PM
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Giant ocr is really good. If you go on thier website you will see how they have made the giant bikes specially for women. I love my bike. there are approx fifty riders i ride with and about thirty percent ride the giant bike. Not only is the price cheaper for the quality of what you get, they are made to fit.
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Old 10-13-04, 09:57 AM
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Originally Posted by joao
hello everybody. i want to buy a road bicycle. the problem is that i'm a girl and the offer is very limitated.
i'm thinking in a cannondale because everybody sais that they are very good. there are only two models avaiable: (r500 tiagra) and (r1000 ultegra). i would like somethig better than tiagra but not so expencive as ultegra.
my question is, there is substantial diference between men and womens geometry frame? aparently both frames seems to be identical. in the same size, of course.
can you help me?

sorry for the english, i'm spaniard.
Although I have long legs for my height, I ride a man's Bianchi and it fits perfectly according two two different professional fits. I also have a lot of miles on a man's Cannondale with the same results.
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Old 10-13-04, 10:12 AM
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Depending on the bike, it sounds like a good trade to me.
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Old 10-13-04, 11:16 AM
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My wife just got a new wsd design and they had to shorten the stem on top of the frame design. As everyone else has said, it depends on your body. Get a bike shop to do a good fit.
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Old 10-13-04, 12:34 PM
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Must be a trick question. Women belong barefoot and pregnant in the kitchen, so why would they need a road bike?
 
Old 10-13-04, 03:52 PM
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thanks for the input...
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