Go Back  Bike Forums > Bike Forums > Touring
Reload this Page >

Fit question: Taller frame okay?

Touring Have a dream to ride a bike across your state, across the country, or around the world? Self-contained or fully supported? Trade ideas, adventures, and more in our bicycle touring forum.

Fit question: Taller frame okay?

Old 07-05-13, 10:01 PM
Interested Backpacker
Thread Starter
Join Date: Oct 2012
Location: Hampton, Va
Posts: 277

Bikes: 88 Peugot US Express, 2019 Bachetta Bella, 2023 Catrike Dumont, 2001 Trek 520 Slate Pearl, MayaCycle Trailer, 2104 Trek Domane, Sun EZ Sport Recumbent

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 30 Post(s)
Liked 1 Time in 1 Post
Fit question: Taller frame okay?

Okay, since touring bikes are normally set up for long distance trips, do all the normal fit criteria really apply other than the true comfort factor? Example, I have been told that I need a 54" frame. I originally purchased an older Peugeot with a 57 cm seat tube. I lowered the seat so that the crankset shaft to the seat was at 67 cm.

Several months later, I came across a deal on my dream bike, a Trek 520 with a 54 cm frame. Whala, when I set the seat at my comfort level, I discovered it was at the same 67 cm distance from seat to crankshaft center. The only difference in the two bikes is that the Peugot has butterfly handlebars vs the normal drops on the 520. And the Peugot has an additional 4 cm reach from the seat post to the handlebar stem.

My initial observations are that the Peugot is a bit more comfortable due to the butterfly handle bars keeping me a bit more upright....., but, by conventional wisdom, this bike is supposedly too tall for me. So tell me how the foldable touring bikes (example....Bike Friday) that has a shorter frame with a tall seat post is any different than a situation like what ia am experiencing. Is it all hype or will I find a big eye opener after I finish a 100 mile day ( my trips to date have been < 20 miles).

Not to put the Trek 520 in a lesser light. I love the way it shifts and the 15 less pounds that it weighs compared to the Peugot. I just want to fully understand the fit issues and the comfort factor on different sized framed bikes. Thanks for your expertise in this area.
Fullcount is offline  
Old 07-05-13, 10:28 PM
Senior Member
bikemig's Avatar
Join Date: Apr 2012
Location: Middle Earth (aka IA)
Posts: 20,431

Bikes: A bunch of old bikes and a few new ones

Mentioned: 178 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 5885 Post(s)
Liked 3,468 Times in 2,078 Posts
Top tube length matters a lot for bike fit as you just discovered: https://sheldonbrown.com/frame-sizing.html. If you like the butterfly bars on the Peugeot, you might want to use similar bars on your Trek. This is a pretty common touring set up in Europe. My guess is that you have the seat slammed down pretty far on the Peugeot. A bike that is too tall for you won't handle as nicely as one that is the right size but it can work as long as the top tube length plus stem length is right. One other factor to consider is whether the bars are at the same height (more or less) as the seat. You might find too much of a drop uncomfortable.
bikemig is offline  
Old 07-05-13, 11:08 PM
Other Worldly Member
Jseis's Avatar
Join Date: May 2012
Location: The old Northwest Coast.
Posts: 1,540

Bikes: 1973 Motobecane Grand Jubilee, 1981 Centurion Super LeMans, 2010 Gary Fisher Wahoo, 2003 Colnago Dream Lux, 2014 Giant Defy 1, 2015 Framed Bikes Minnesota 3.0, several older family Treks

Mentioned: 5 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 194 Post(s)
Liked 136 Times in 53 Posts
My first bike was 58...a tad bit tall for me and though I can stand over it, the stem was to long (say 110mm) so I swapped it out for a TTT about 60 mm, I also have a 55 that is perfect and is has a 110mm stem. Both have exactly the same pedal axle to mid seat distance ~34.5". I have a slightly long waist and long arms. Fortunately stems, seat height, set fore and aft placement are all adjustable.

A slightly taller frame is ok but you'll find a frame that fits you makes for a superior handling bike. On the 55 my weight is more forward and the bike handles much better.
Make ******* Grate Cheese Again
Jseis is offline  
Old 07-06-13, 05:57 AM
Senior Member
Join Date: Aug 2010
Location: Madison, WI
Posts: 11,168

Bikes: 1961 Ideor, 1966 Perfekt 3 Speed AB Hub, 1994 Bridgestone MB-6, 2006 Airnimal Joey, 2009 Thorn Sherpa, 2013 Thorn Nomad MkII, 2015 VO Pass Hunter, 2017 Lynskey Backroad, 2017 Raleigh Gran Prix, 1980s Bianchi Mixte on a trainer. Others are now gone.

Mentioned: 47 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 3449 Post(s)
Liked 1,448 Times in 1,129 Posts
If you are using drop bars, you may find that you prefer a shorter top tube than with other bars. Riding with your hands on the hoods of the brake levers on drop bars puts your hands much further forward than if you were riding on normal flat bars.
Tourist in MSN is online now  
Related Topics
Thread Starter
Last Post
Fitting Your Bike
05-20-18 02:12 PM
Fitting Your Bike
10-07-15 04:17 PM
Clumsy Climber
Fitting Your Bike
06-24-13 10:25 AM
10-31-11 12:15 PM
12-14-10 09:56 PM

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
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off

Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Contact Us - Archive - Advertising - Cookie Policy - Privacy Statement - Terms of Service -

Copyright © 2024 MH Sub I, LLC dba Internet Brands. All rights reserved. Use of this site indicates your consent to the Terms of Use.