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How to dismount a loaded tour bike?

Old 07-19-22, 05:13 PM
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acorn54
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How to dismount a loaded tour bike?

might sound like a stupid question, but how do i dismount a fully loaded tour bike, when the rear rack has a load that doesn't allow for a smooth leg swing over the top of the rear of the bike?
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Old 07-19-22, 06:03 PM
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My method has been to step over the top tube.

If it helps, you can tilt the bike either toward you or away from you until you get the leg on the other side. I haven't swung my leg over the saddle in a long time.
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Old 07-19-22, 06:04 PM
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Lay the bike down on its side, then step over
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Old 07-19-22, 06:08 PM
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steve and grandps thanks. both make perfect sense. i never had a problem swinging my leg over the rear of the bike until i started with the camping gear on the back of the bike.
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Old 07-19-22, 07:22 PM
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Steve B.
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Originally Posted by acorn54
steve and grandps thanks. both make perfect sense. i never had a problem swinging my leg over the rear of the bike until i started with the camping gear on the back of the bike.
I got it as I too have had issues dismounting when my panniers are installed. I thought I was just a old fart clutz.
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Old 07-19-22, 08:55 PM
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I have been touring for quite a while and wholeheartedly agree with DeadGrandpa. That is why I think it is so sad the way I see there photos of tourists on bikes, a lot of the time their bikes have really high top tubes. Don't get me wrong,I am 5'-6" and used to to tour on a 52 cm bike, but found it to be much easier to get my leg over a 42cm frame,
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Old 07-19-22, 09:32 PM
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headwind that is a 10 cm change in geometry. doesn't that significant of a change compromise the comfortable fit of a bike rider on the bike?
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Old 07-20-22, 05:36 AM
  #8  
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When I was a kid, I had a paper route. And I had an old single speed bike with the giant chromed rear baskets on it in back. And I could not get my leg over it when there were papers stacked up on the baskets. So, starting as a young kid, I started sharply bending my knee and swinging my knee over my top tube in front of the saddle. Been getting on bikes that way for half a century.

Of my bikes, this one has the highest top tube, which in this case is horizontal instead of sloped, so this bike is the best example for a photo.



Lean the bike towards you to lower the saddle and top tube a few inches, hold your front brake on (or both brakes if you prefer), stand on one leg, then you are a tripod (one leg and two wheels) for stability, and swing your knee over the top tube. Note my posture, I am standing very close to handlebar and leaning over the handlebar. And my knee is above the top tube and in front of the saddle. I had to stand there for several seconds for the camera self timer to show this, if I can do it, you can do it.

If you try it fast, you will fall over. I have tried to expain this to people and they always try it fast, swing their knee into the saddle or for some other reason do something wrong, get frustrated and quit. So, if you decide to try getting on the bike that way, first few times do it very slowly. Perhaps stand on the one leg with the two wheels providing stability for a few seconds with your right foot off the ground so that stable position feels more natural before you sharply bend your knee and slowly (to avoid hitting the saddle) swing your knee over the top tube.

One person that I tried to explain this to could not do it, her knee lacked the flexibility to bend her knee sharp enough. She ended up buying a bike with a woman's frame.

This question comes up often enough that I took this photo to show how I do it two years ago.
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Old 07-20-22, 05:51 AM
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Originally Posted by acorn54
headwind that is a 10 cm change in geometry. doesn't that significant of a change compromise the comfortable fit of a bike rider on the bike?
I am in similar situation with 4 cm undersized frame.

It just so happens I am more comfortable with short reach and it seems I need an even smaller frame (8 cm undersized) as I had to replace the 80mm long stem with a very short 32mm long stem. No problems with my knees banging the dropbar when pedaling out of the saddle. I have no issues with low stack of undersized frames. Different people, different needs.

Yeah lower top tube makes it easier to swing leg over. On higher top tubes, I get incredibly painful cramps if I swing my leg over.
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Old 07-20-22, 06:06 AM
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tourist, thanks for the picture, its worth a thousand words of explaining your procedure, i will slowly try it, it is a technique worth learning, and koala thanks for your feedback. have a great day.
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Old 07-20-22, 06:19 AM
  #11  
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Originally Posted by acorn54
tourist, thanks for the picture, its worth a thousand words of explaining your procedure, i will slowly try it, it is a technique worth learning, and koala thanks for your feedback. have a great day.
Thatís exactly what I do as well. My tourer is on the larger size because it feels better to me. But my gear isnít piled up high. The saddle is the highest point.
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Old 07-20-22, 07:44 AM
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Originally Posted by acorn54
tourist, thanks for the picture, its worth a thousand words of explaining your procedure, i will slowly try it, it is a technique worth learning, and koala thanks for your feedback. have a great day.
Make sure you hold the brakes on, especially on hills, lol. Don't ask me how I know about that. 😁😉 I pile stuff up high on the rear rack, plus have bad knees, so this is an old skill by now, that I don't even think about much. But I've noticed a few people looking at me, as I mount up, especially if I have a bag of groceries on the handgrip too. 🙄😉
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Old 07-20-22, 08:16 AM
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Lower top tube.

Originally Posted by acorn54
headwind that is a 10 cm change in geometry. doesn't that significant of a change compromise the comfortable fit of a bike rider on the bike?
No problem with a 10 cm / (4 inch) shorter seat tube as long as the (virtual) top tube length is in range of the right length and head tube is the right height and seat tube angle is OK.
FYI: I do not agree with the knee first approach tho stepping over a top tube. Try it foot first.
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Old 07-20-22, 10:31 AM
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I re-read the original post, the question was dismounting, not mounting. On my previous post, sorry I got that backwards. Do it in reverse. When I have ridden 50 or a 100 miles and then get off the bike, I am usually tired enough that my leg and knee drags over the toptube to dismount.

A friend of mine when touring puts the pedal on the side of the bike he is standing on up high. Then, with both hands on the handlebars, he puts one foot on the pedal and pushes the bike forward and simultaneously stands on that pedal with one foot to accelerate forward, at that point he is up higher, he then swings his leg over the rear of the bike to get on it. He does that from whichever side of the bike he is on. I have never tried his method, as I would be nervous about not getting it right, so I can't offer any advice on that. And that obviously means you can't be going up a steep hill when you do that.

I always get on the bike from one side (left side), I am not very ambidextrous.
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Old 07-20-22, 02:01 PM
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Originally Posted by Tourist in MSN
I re-read the original post, the question was dismounting, not mounting. On my previous post, sorry I got that backwards. Do it in reverse. When I have ridden 50 or a 100 miles and then get off the bike, I am usually tired enough that my leg and knee drags over the toptube to dismount.

A friend of mine when touring puts the pedal on the side of the bike he is standing on up high. Then, with both hands on the handlebars, he puts one foot on the pedal and pushes the bike forward and simultaneously stands on that pedal with one foot to accelerate forward, at that point he is up higher, he then swings his leg over the rear of the bike to get on it. He does that from whichever side of the bike he is on. I have never tried his method, as I would be nervous about not getting it right, so I can't offer any advice on that. And that obviously means you can't be going up a steep hill when you do that.

I always get on the bike from one side (left side), I am not very ambidextrous.
this is how I mount and dismount on an uphill grade. On the flats I lean the bike towards me while keeping the frame close to my body as possible until the top tube is an inch or so lower than my crotch. I then step over the frame and place my foot onto the pedal on the far side giving the pedal 1/2 to one full crank as I push the bike back into an upright position with both my leg planted on the ground and my body. Once the bike is upright and rolling I place my planted leg on the corresponding pedal and away I go.
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Old 07-20-22, 03:18 PM
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I step my foot over the top tube if I can't mount the standard way.
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Old 07-20-22, 03:22 PM
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At age 73 and 5'5" the only way I can comfortably dismount is by leaving my left foot planted on its pedal and swinging my right leg over the rear. The reverse move to mount. I need that 5" step up off the pedal to comfortably clear the saddle and any rear luggage. That's on a small frame with a sloping top tube with 700c wheels and 29er size tires.

Mounting a bike with a high bikepacking seat bag would be impossible for me, and I don't have the flexibility to swing my leg over the top tube as suggested by Tourist MSN and M Rose. My top tube is just too short for my leg to fit across between HB stem and saddle nose.
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Old 07-20-22, 03:42 PM
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Originally Posted by Tourist in MSN

I always get on the bike from one side (left side), I am not very ambidextrous.
Same here. I've been about 80-90% blind in my left eye since birth, and some things I just have to do my way. 😉 I generally step over the top tube as well, in a manner of speaking. I wouldn't even consider trying that rolling mount, I'd probably land on my noggin, and maybe run myself over too. 😋😁
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Old 07-20-22, 04:04 PM
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Originally Posted by acorn54
might sound like a stupid question, but how do i dismount a fully loaded tour bike, when the rear rack has a load that doesn't allow for a smooth leg swing over the top of the rear of the bike?
I've finally managed to squeeze down and lighten my load so I can have one small stuff sack mounted on the top of the rack, with the cylindrical axis along that of the bike. This is the first time I have been able to swing my leg over the way I am used to it, and as I age, this is a real advantage. (My wife, with arthritic hip joints, has to put a leg over the top tube, even on an unloaded bike, and she has managed to ding it all up. Leaning a heavy bike (loaded, or e-bike) is not an easy thing for her (or me) to do).

I'm seriously considering switching to 650b wheels as well.
​​​​​​​

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Old 07-20-22, 04:06 PM
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Originally Posted by BobG
Mounting a bike with a high bikepacking seat bag would be impossible for me, and I don't have the flexibility to swing my leg over the top tube as suggested by Tourist MSN and M Rose. My top tube is just too short for my leg to fit across between HB stem and saddle nose.
I bought one of those seat-bags and have yet to use it because of this (and because I am realizing it is a bit ill-conceived and wags the bike).
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Old 07-20-22, 05:14 PM
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Sense of humour alert....

​​​​​​What did we do before the internet and how did we survive and figure out stuff?

This dismounting question does make me think of when I rode a penny farthing for the first, and so far, only time. Got going, but then riding around for a while, starting thinking, "how the hell do I get off?"
Managed to do it but came close to handlebar-ing myself in the crotch.
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Old 07-20-22, 05:38 PM
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If I am tired, I put both feet flat. Put left hand on the left side of the handlebar and the right on the right rear of the saddle. Here is the magic....I lift my right leg over the top tube and put it on the ground.

If fresh, I swing my leg over the rear panniers in one motion. This risks tearing the achilles if you are tired but think you are fresh as I learned on MacKenzie Pass.
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Old 07-21-22, 06:00 AM
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Originally Posted by djb
... when I rode a penny farthing for the first, and so far, only time. Got going, but then riding around for a while, starting thinking, "how the hell do I get off?"
Managed to do it but came close to handlebar-ing myself in the crotch.
That was humorous. Thanks. I would have no idea how to get off, I would be searching for soft grass to land in.
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Old 07-21-22, 06:32 AM
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My legs are 28" - I don't swing them over much other than curbs.

Mount/dismount/stop at a red light all involve leaning the bike over as if I were to rest on the top tube my feet would be airborne.

I have swung my leg over the saddle with the seat dropped but I must have looked like a spastic karate student who picked a fight he couldn't win - with a bike.

The hilarious thing is that my wife who is 8" shorter than me has legs 2" longer and rides a larger size bike. I would need to use a picnic table to get on/off it like I did way back when I had a dirtbike lol
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Old 07-24-22, 12:43 PM
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I used to just pull my right leg over the top bar until, catching it, I fell backwards and cut my head. Blood everywhere. Since then, I swing my right leg forward over the bars, so far so good
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