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Why are people riding such small frames?

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Why are people riding such small frames?

Old 04-26-13, 07:08 AM
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duvinclunk
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Why are people riding such small frames?

Sorry, yes ANOTHER frame size thread. I had something I was curious about and couldn't find the information elsewhere and figured I'd ask regardless of it being another frame size question...

...anyways, since the weather is nicer my wife and I have been trying to get out and ride as much as possible. I have noticed a trend riding around downtown SLC here, even in the small city that we are: people are riding some small frames. Now I'm 5'10 and an inseam of 32.5. I was told to ride a 56cm bike, which I do. Honestly it does feel comfortable but big (and maybe I'm just used to riding BMX when younger that anything above that feels big). We stopped to talk to a guy the other day that we had met on a few occasions when riding and this guy is probably 6'1 or so and I swear that guy had to be on a 54cm frame, or smaller. The seat was high in the air and the bars slammed. We'll I started paying more attention to it and have seriously noticed that people tend to be rocking a much smaller fit than I am. Is this that people just are not aware of proper sizing or is there some advantage to running a smaller frame?
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Old 04-26-13, 07:15 AM
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Two things I like about this.

I like this:
Originally Posted by duvinclunk View Post
Now I'm 5'10 and an inseam of 32.5.
And I like this:
Originally Posted by duvinclunk View Post
Is this that people just are not aware of proper sizing


If you start a thread about frame size and give your height in feet'inches, and your inseam; you probably fall into that second quote up there.

Review questions:

1.) What does your height have to do with frame size?
2.) What does your inseam have to do with frame size?
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Old 04-26-13, 07:24 AM
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I guess a smaller frame is a stiffer frame but all that seat post would certainly make things wiggly while seated.

I have 58cm frames now but used to ride 56cm, which seemed to make my back hurt and everyone once in awhile, my knees would contact the bars while standing. I could have gotten a longer stem but worried about handling/descending (I lived in a very hilly area and would see 50+mph daily), and opted to get a proper frame size for me. More stable, better weight balance and overall comfort for me.
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Old 04-26-13, 07:29 AM
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Originally Posted by Spoonrobot View Post
If you start a thread about frame size and give your height in feet'inches, and your inseam; you probably fall into that second quote up there.

Review questions:

1.) What does your height have to do with frame size?
2.) What does your inseam have to do with frame size?
First, I never said I was one who 'understood' frame sizing. If I did I wouldn't be asking such a question. The basis behind the question is that I don't know jack about frame sizing and am trying to understand and learn the proper mechanics behind it.

If I'm reading into this correctly, you are insinuating from your post that overall body height and inseam play no part in frame size. Correct?
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Old 04-26-13, 07:31 AM
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Unfortunately, some bike shops often sell people the wrong size bike just to get rid of stock that's been sitting around for a while. I worked at a shop a few years ago and would literally get into screaming matches with the owner because of this. One time, he tried putting a dude who was at least 6' tall on a 52cm road bike, telling him that "once we put a longer stem and seatpost on this puppy, you'll be as good as gold!" and also feeding him a bunch of crap about how the smaller bike will actually fit him better because he had short legs for his height (which he did not). When I managed to privately talk the guy out of it, the owner *****ed at me because "We've had that bike on the floor for far too long!"
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Old 04-26-13, 07:38 AM
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I ride on a frame that is slightly too small because when I ordered my bike I had my friend help me on sizing. Even though he had been riding for years, he didn't really have a clue about sizing, or didn't care to really help me.

I'm on a 54cm bike and I should be on a 57.
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Old 04-26-13, 07:41 AM
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Originally Posted by Scrodzilla View Post
Unfortunately, some bike shops often sell people the wrong size bike just to get rid of stock that's been sitting around for a while. I worked at a shop a few years ago and would literally get into screaming matches with the owner because of this. One time, he tried putting a dude who was at least 6' tall on a 52cm road bike, telling him that "once we put a longer stem and seatpost on this puppy, you'll be as good as gold!" and also feeding him a bunch of crap about how the smaller bike will actually fit him better because he had short legs for his height (which he did not). When I managed to privately talk the guy out of it, the owner *****ed at me because "We've had that bike on the floor for far too long!"
Now with your expeience in the bike/fixed gear world, do you typically suggest or recommend individuals get properly sized (real fitment) for a bike that will solely be used around the city or do you typically get it 'pretty close' to what people should actually be riding?
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Old 04-26-13, 07:45 AM
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Originally Posted by duvinclunk View Post
Correct?
Correct. Leg length differences can almost always be accommodated by changes in seat height whereas the getting the top tube length correct for the frame is much more critical.

That being said, there are a number of reasons why people tend toward frames that are too small rather than too large. A smaller bike is usually lighter and has a shorter wheelbase which means that the bike will feel more lively and responsive, which for many people is more important than comfort over the long haul. A bike that is too small can somewhat be made up for by having a long seatpost and/or stem but a bike that is too large doesn't have as many options. This is particularly important for a bike that may be shared for example.
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Old 04-26-13, 07:51 AM
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my training bike is steel and has a 56cm top toob, w a 100mm stem. it is quite comfertable even for 4+ hrs

my race bike is alu and has a 54cm top toob, w a 120mm stem. it is quite "lively and responsive"

its a matter of simple science people
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Old 04-26-13, 08:02 AM
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With the popularity and overall trendiness of SS/FG bikes, for a lot of people, their SS/FG is their first "real" bike as an adult. They don't want to spend a lot of money to get into a hobby they're not sure they'll like or stick with, so they go online to order bikes and parts. Not sure about sizing, or they read the wrong information on some website somewhere, or they measure incorrectly, or whatever, they end up ordering the wrong size bike. That or they ride the first/cheapest vintage bike they find. It's costly to return online orders and/or the rider doesn't really know any better since it's his or her first bike, so they ride it as is.
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Old 04-26-13, 08:02 AM
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YEAAAA RIGHT TMONK

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Old 04-26-13, 08:20 AM
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Originally Posted by duvinclunk View Post
Now with your expeience in the bike/fixed gear world, do you typically suggest or recommend individuals get properly sized (real fitment) for a bike that will solely be used around the city or do you typically get it 'pretty close' to what people should actually be riding?
I usually go with pretty close because if the frame size is in the right range, other factors can be adjusted based on the individual rider's needs (within reason). All my bikes have slightly different measurements/geo but they are all close enough to each other the way I have them set up that they are all comfortable for me. However, I wouldn't ever want to ride a century on my Leader 725 but I didn't build it with all-day rides as its intended purpose.

Based on what my fit calculations say, I should have a 120mm stem on my Bareknuckle but I know that would be very uncomfortable for me. This being said, I should also "technically" be wearing size 11.5 Vans but because I have wide feet, I find size 12s to be much better. Putting two people with the exact same body proportions on identical bikes sized according to bike fit results doesn't mean they will both find everything about the bikes to be perfect.

Calculations are numbers. People don't ride numbers, they ride bikes.

Last edited by Scrodzilla; 04-26-13 at 08:43 AM.
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Old 04-26-13, 08:26 AM
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I'm 5' 7" with short legs. It seems like a good fit.


https://thefrugalhamstercyclist.blogspot.com/
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Old 04-26-13, 08:28 AM
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Originally Posted by Jaytron View Post
YEAAAA RIGHT TMONK

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Old 04-26-13, 08:29 AM
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also i the only think i pay attention to when buying a new frame is the top tube length and headtube height... as others have mentioned the seat tube height isn't really an important variable due to the adjust-ability of the seatpost height.
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Old 04-26-13, 08:39 AM
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Originally Posted by Scrodzilla View Post
I usually go with pretty close because if the frame size is in the right range, other factors can be adjusted based on the individual riders needs (within reason). All my bikes have slightly different measurements/geo but they are all close enough to each other the way I have them set up that they are all comfortable for me. However, I wouldn't ever want to ride a century on my Leader 725 but I didn't build it with all-day rides as its intended purpose.

Based on what my fit calculations say, I should have a 120mm stem on my Bareknuckle but I know that would be very uncomfortable for me. This being said, I should also "technically" be wearing size 11.5 Vans but because I have wide feet, I find size 12s to be much better. Putting two people with the exact same body proportions on identical bikes sized according to bike fit results doesn't mean they will both find everything about the bikes to be perfect.

Calculations are numbers. People don't ride numbers, they ride bikes.
+1. But I ride 54cm - 58cm on different bikes for different reasons, my "chart" size is more like 56cm. On a 54cm I can get my forearms more parallel to the ground in the drops and be nicely tucked in, weight a little more forward, more of a drop in the bars. It's comfy, but not as relaxed as on a bigger bike, more of a coiled spring feel. Smaller, the bike is livelier and a tad lighter, feels better connected hill climbing while standing. However, I am talking road bikes here, not necessarily fg/ss.
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Old 04-26-13, 08:45 AM
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Man, why are vans so narrow?
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Old 04-26-13, 09:10 AM
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Originally Posted by prooftheory View Post
Man, why are vans so narrow?
There are no wrong sized shoes........only wrong sized feet.
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Old 04-26-13, 10:03 AM
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Because I'm short. 5'10" and a 54cm is perfect, but I also ride a 52cm.
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Old 04-26-13, 10:41 AM
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Dunno, every idiot fixed gear kid I see tries to ride a frame too big and then puts a 70mm -17 degree on it and thinks its hot as hell.

If your bike doesn't have a 100+mm stem on it you could ride a size down and it'd feel better imo.

You could always ride a 52 with a setback and a 200mm stem like that Astana rider.
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Old 04-26-13, 10:47 AM
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Originally Posted by McRussellPants View Post
Dunno, every idiot fixed gear kid I see tries to ride a frame too big and then puts a 70mm -17 degree on it and thinks its hot as hell.

If your bike doesn't have a 100+mm stem on it you could ride a size down and it'd feel better imo.

You could always ride a 52 with a setback and a 200mm stem like that Astana rider.
I see this too. And they typically ride with their backs straight up and their elbows locked out.
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Old 04-26-13, 11:14 AM
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Because they don't make 70cm track bikes, ha that is why.

One of these days I'm going to do a fitcalc to find out how poor of a fit my bike is ha
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Old 04-26-13, 11:44 AM
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Originally Posted by prooftheory View Post
Man, why are vans so narrow?
I find vans to be impossible to wear for me, im only a size 9 but wide and my pinky toe always starts hurting. Adidas all the way.
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Old 04-26-13, 11:55 AM
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Euro pro swag.
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Old 04-26-13, 11:56 AM
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I like Dr Martens but my skinny feet make the fit a little weird. After the initial break-in period, though, I can get em laced up nice and tight for a comfy fit.
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