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  1. #1
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    L or XL Prime Time

    Would like to harness the power of the internet, aka MTBR BansheeForum, to help me pick my Prime size, L or XL

    I'm 6'3" 240lbs and have a 35" inseam, which puts me on the longer leg side of average. I like trail and all mountain riding and long walks on the beach.

    Current bike is a Large Diamondback Mason FS -- did a bit of graphic design work for them and picked up a color way test frame as my first 29er experience. I'm a big wheel convert now and I do enjoy riding the bike, but it has 18.25" chain stays yet a 46.5" WB and very slack so the front is short with about 16.5" Reach. I feel like I'm hunched when decending.

    Before this I had a Large Nomad which worked but was probably too small. The XL Nomad always felt too big however.

    Won't get the chance to test ride.
    The XL with a 25.4 TT and 48" WB has me worried it's going to feel huge. The L is going to feel more comparable in WB but longer reach due to the shorter CS's. Would be happy to have the whippier wheelbase, but then hell, I'm 6'3"

    Real world experience and arm chair speculating appreciated!
    Thanks in advance.

  2. #2
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    I'd vote XL with a short stem. I'm sure you could "fit" on a Large, but would probably need 70-80mm stem and wide bars to feel somewhat uncramped.

    I'm 5'11 and just went from a Medium Prime to a Large Phantom and I'm much happier on the Large with a 40mm stem than the Medium and 70mm stem.

    That being said, it wasn't horrid on the Medium and if you want to toss it about some you might be happier on a smaller frame.

  3. #3
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    What is your saddle height from bb center to top of saddle. Mine is *edit* 80cm (for some reason I thought 73..doh), and I am 6'2" on a large Prime. imho I am about as tall as you should be on a large. I am using a setback post and a 70mm stem.
    Last edited by jonshonda; 1 Week Ago at 03:11 AM.

  4. #4
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    Vertical up from center of BB is 77.5cm or 30.5in. Add another 2.5in if you are measuring along the seat tube axis...

    If your numbers are right then it would seem I should go XL, which I'm more leaning toward.

  5. #5
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    L or XL Prime Time

    FWIW, I'm very happy on a L, at 6'3" with shorter legs (33"-34") inseam.
    "Back off, man. I'm a scientist." - Dr. Peter Venkman

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  6. #6
    FM
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    Here's some pictures of Peaches that might be helpful.



    Name:  3072261.large.jpg
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    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails L or XL Prime Time-_dsc1090.jpg  

    L or XL Prime Time-_dsc1501-1-.jpg  


  7. #7
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    Jeezzeee... That wombat photo always comes up when you search my name!

  8. #8
    FM
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    Quote Originally Posted by PeachesN'Cream View Post
    Jeezzeee... That wombat photo always comes up when you search my name!
    But wait... theres more!


  9. #9
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    Your an inch taller, but same inseam as me, I have a PP Prime XL and up until I got my L Phantom was running it with a 60mm stem and 785mm bar. I am much happier on the Large Phantom with the shorter WB and ability whip/throw it about easier, run my Phantom with a 65mm stem and 785mm bar and it feels nice. Now to compare the 2, the XL PP Prime has a Reach of 472mm and the L Phantom's Reach is 450mm, so yes I've effectively shortened up my cockpit on paper, but in reality haven't by much, how I measure I'm only down a <1/2" - I measure from the back centre of the saddle to the outer from of the grip, so I get a triangulated measurement which accounts for switches to shorter stem and wider bar or vice versa.

    For me, while I loved the XL PP Prime and had no trouble with it in the tech, although the long WB did present problems in very tight, tech trails with sharp turns etc, it still performed well, it was more on the faster descents where I felt I couldn't quite get control of it, more so the front end. I am much faster on the Phantom now, feels much more within my control and I can pull it back or throw it about as necessary, also no issues climbing at all, except for the bit of extra movement on the real steeps because of the slacker geo, but haven't failed to climb anything yet because of it - have actually made climbs I couldn't before.

    What you do have over me is pure mass and as such the extra size of the XL Prime probably would be easier for you to man handle if need be. Another thought to consider is that from what you've said, your old frame had a shorter Reach, so you will be going to a "bigger" frame in the Large Prime, you will have 21mm more Reach, which can be quite a lot depending on how sensitive you are to changes - the change for the Phantom Large to have a 450mm Reach as compared to the Large Prime with 440mm Reach was enough to let me go down to the Large Phantom, as it had the same Reach as the XL Paradox I loved. Also you say the XL Nomad always felt big, so going by that I'd expect you'd have the same feeling on the XL Prime, as it's Reach is actually 14mm more than an XL Nomad and the WB would be about the same.

    Hope some of that ramblin helps, below are a few pics of my XL Prime and L Phantom and of me descending on both (not a great pic on the Phantom). As you can see, LOTS more exposed post on the L Phantom - running a 410 Thomson I have about 1" above the Min insertion line.
    XL Prime
    L or XL Prime Time-p1070895.jpg

    L Phantom
    L or XL Prime Time-p1080144_fb.jpg

    Descending on the XL Prime
    L or XL Prime Time-dsc_5856_edit.jpg

    Descending on the L Phantom
    L or XL Prime Time-snapshot_001.jpg
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  10. #10
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    XL sounds about right to me. I am basically same height (6'3" & 34inseam)/weight (230lb) & riding style (Park, All Mtn, ETC).
    Pre-purchase, I was able to demo a L Prime, but not an XL.

    After much consideration, I chose the XL, and without a doubt, the XL was the right choice. I currently have it set up with a 50mm stem. I test rode the L with an 80mm stem & it felt too short. I strongly recommend the 150mm rear end option, and imo to set this bike up for perfect all around use, a dropper post is a must have.

    Pic below is XL set up with 80mm chromag stem & 785mm bars (I HAD to ride while I was waiting for 50mm stem to ship), flip chips in nuetral/middle position, & note that the dropper is down, as I am riding a trail littered with poppers, drops and all kinds of fun...this pic doesn't show the gap - the Prime loves this kind of riding!
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails L or XL Prime Time-854258d1386866782-production-prime-photo-build-thread-1377382_10153348791860521_438824944_n.jpg  


  11. #11
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    I also struggled with the decision between L and XL. The L has the shortest ETT I've ever had (by half an inch), and that worried me a bit. However, the reach is longer than the frame it replaced, and it took me a while to get my mind around that. For me, the fit is perfect when I'm out of the saddle, and the tight cockpit lends itself well both to seated climbing on steeps and to technical rock garden climbs. It does feel a bit short on more level, pedal-heavy stretches when I want the saddle all the way up. The steep STA plays into that, too. But that's a tradeoff I'm happy to make for this category of bike.

    With your longer legs, you may very well prefer the XL, but I'm very glad I didn't go that way myself. Since we're doing it, here's a photo of me on my L. The cockpit is a 50 mm stem and 760 mm bars.

    L or XL Prime Time-img_4060.jpg
    "Back off, man. I'm a scientist." - Dr. Peter Venkman

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  12. #12
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    I wanna play too..
    6'3'' 35 inseam on XL (60mm stem 785mm bars), fits just fine
    L or XL Prime Time-photo-06-02-14-11.44.29.jpg

  13. #13
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    I think you might be right at or exceeding the min insertion point for the longest Thomson seatpost at the saddle height. I am pretty sure I have the 410mm post, and am getting close at the saddle height I need.

    OP, it might be benificial to take the critical measurements from a bike that feels really dialed and have other prime owners compare them to their setups to see which might best fit your needs.

  14. #14
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    He'll have over an inch to spare with w 410mm Thomson, as I already said. I have a 25.25" inseam and the measurement from the top of the saddle directly above the rails down to the centre of the BB is 32"+ for me, depending on what trail I'm riding. Personally i don't think the Large Prime would have fitted me well at all, but the Large Phantom does.

    Jonshonda has a good idea in measuring up a bit that you have dialed and comparing it directly to that.

    Quote Originally Posted by jonshonda View Post
    I think you might be right at or exceeding the min insertion point for the longest Thomson seatpost at the saddle height. I am pretty sure I have the 410mm post, and am getting close at the saddle height I need.

    OP, it might be benificial to take the critical measurements from a bike that feels really dialed and have other prime owners compare them to their setups to see which might best fit your needs.
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  15. #15
    FM
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    Trying to help my buddy Peaches out here

    As suggested, I think it would be super helpful if some peeps with similar inseams (35") could post measurements of the distance between the center of the stem cap, and the nose of the saddle, with the seat at climbing height.

    His current bike has a really short ETT and a really slack seat tube, which makes comparing reach & ETT measurements complicated, especially for such a tall dude.

  16. #16
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    I've heard this measurement over and over again and I just don't get it, it doesn't take saddle length into consideration and saddles can vary by as much as 3" from what I've seen Personally I stick to my method which is to know how far behind th4e BB I like to be, set the saddle to that and adjust the cockpit to my desired length, which I measure from the middle-back of the saddle to the outside of one grip. This measurements allows for the use of different length stems and bars and no matter getting the Reach you like - I know measuring this way I like a Reach of between 35-35.5".

    So Peaches, how far behind the BB is the back of your saddle, drawing a vertical line down to intersect the chainstay for this measurement? What saddle do you use and it's length? What stem/bar combo would you ideally like to use? What are your current measurements cockpit wise. As far as measurements go on my XL Prime, I ran my saddle 14" behind the BB and had a measurement of 35.25" measuring how I do from back-centre of saddle to outside of grip, running a 60mm stem and 785mm bar - I own a pre-production frame, so the Reach is 472mm instead of the 475mm of the production ones.


    Quote Originally Posted by FM View Post
    Trying to help my buddy Peaches out here

    As suggested, I think it would be super helpful if some peeps with similar inseams (35") could post measurements of the distance between the center of the stem cap, and the nose of the saddle, with the seat at climbing height.

    His current bike has a really short ETT and a really slack seat tube, which makes comparing reach & ETT measurements complicated, especially for such a tall dude.
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  17. #17
    FM
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    Certainly a valid perspective. Obviously bars will change that dimension greatly, but putting wider or narrower bars on isn't really an ideal way to change your effective cockpit reach (Yes I know you're thinking most people have a bar width they like regardless of frame size... but it might be different for everybody. It's just another variable independent of frame size).

    The main reason I think the stem-saddle dimension would help, is to figure out the true reach of the L and XL primes compared to his DB, which has a crazy slack seat tube & short ETT. Since true REACH is projected horizontally back from the head tube, it doesn't really tell you where the saddle is actually going to end up after your inseam and seat angle are figured in- especially for tall dudes.

  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by LyNx View Post
    I've heard this measurement over and over again and I just don't get it, it doesn't take saddle length into consideration and saddles can vary by as much as 3" from what I've seen Personally I stick to my method which is to know how far behind th4e BB I like to be, set the saddle to that and adjust the cockpit to my desired length, which I measure from the middle-back of the saddle to the outside of one grip. This measurements allows for the use of different length stems and bars and no matter getting the Reach you like - I know measuring this way I like a Reach of between 35-35.5".

    So Peaches, how far behind the BB is the back of your saddle, drawing a vertical line down to intersect the chainstay for this measurement? What saddle do you use and it's length? What stem/bar combo would you ideally like to use? What are your current measurements cockpit wise. As far as measurements go on my XL Prime, I ran my saddle 14" behind the BB and had a measurement of 35.25" measuring how I do from back-centre of saddle to outside of grip, running a 60mm stem and 785mm bar - I own a pre-production frame, so the Reach is 472mm instead of the 475mm of the production ones.
    all one has to do is look at the pictures fm posted of his buddy's riding position riding down that rock and compare it to the shots of you that you posted of yourself to know to discount anything you have to say about anything bike related. one guy looks like he is riding his bike and the other guy looks like a passenger on his. i'll leave you to guess which is which. you can post your favorite puzzled emoticon as much as you want, but to me the only thing puzzling is how you can figure you are an expert advice giver. fm asked for specific measurements and you want to teach him what he should be asking for. lol, what a douche

  19. #19
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    Thanks for the help all. The photos especially are great.
    Kofoed being the same height and inseam makes the XL look like a really good fit. In reality I've always ridden a frame that is on the smaller side for my height.

    I think I have more to gain going XL, running a 35mm stem and adjusting than going with a Large and always wondering. But then the Large may provide more of what I'm after in an AM big wheeler -- want it to be nimble/whippy as the big wheels are harder to toss around.

    So much measuring!

    Saddle Height (measured vertical from BB center)
    30.75in or 78cm

    Took my pants off and shaved my undercarriage for a through Inseam measure.
    25.5in

    FM's measure request
    Nose of saddle to center top cap bolt = 18.5in
    Saddle sit bone point to top cap bolt = 25.25 (this seemed a more reliable measure)

    Lynx measure
    Saddle sit bone point to end of bar center = 30in
    Back of saddle to to end of bar center = 33.5in
    And I'd say my saddle is about 10in behind BB center.

    I run a 50mm stem, 785mm bars.
    My saddle is an Ergon SME3 (for Enduro only!) is 10.75in long.

  20. #20
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    Size aside and without knowing how much suspension you need on your local trails, when I hear you talking nimble/whippy, I must say, having ridden both the Prime and Phantom, that the Phantom will offer you a lot more in that department.
    Prime is super stable going down a mountain side hitting rocks, drops and whatever..
    But getting it to pop over roots and get it to tailwhip on "flat" singletrack, you need to beat it a lot more than the Phantom.

    Not trying to make you more confused, I would still buy the XL (whatever model) having a long toptube + short stem just gets you in the right attack position on these kind of bikes.
    (You don't want to be hanging to much over the front wheel going down fast..)

  21. #21
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    Here's my case.
    Height 6',1.5"( 187cm)
    inseam 35.4" (90cm) bare feet
    I found perfect feeling with a L prime and 50mm stem!!,150 mm DPA pike, 77cm wide bars, in line seat post with saddle almost full forward and slackest chip position.

    Although rules says little more stem length would be desirable in pedaling (i don't feel that need anyway), fitting becomes perfect when lowering the 150 mm KS post.


    geometry magic in my case, thanks Keith.

  22. #22
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    I did some more measuring last night to compare my Prime to my 9:ZERO:7. I edited my original post regarding my saddle height. If I remember correctly, to accuratly measure your true inseam, it takes two people. Strip down naked, take a level, and jam it up into your crotch until it hits your sit bones. Then measure from the floor to the top of the level. That should be your cycling inseam.

    My stats:
    Large Production Prime
    70mm Stem
    720mm Bars (any wider and I can make it through some trees)
    6'2"
    Saddle Height (along seatpost axis) 80cm
    Distance from BB Center to tip of saddle 8cm (vertical measurement)
    Front of Saddle to Center of Bars 57cm
    Saddle to Bar Drop 2cm

    I use a f'ed up saddle (Selle SMP Pro), so YMMV.

  23. #23
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    OK Peaches, you forgot one thing...with your current setup, how cramped do you feel with those measurements? Agree with those that are saying if you want to run a really short stem in the 35-40mm range, that the XL is definitely the size for you, if you did that with the Large you'd end back up right where you are now with your current ride.

    While I agree 100% in theory with Kafoed, Phantom is such a capable bike, haven't missed the 25mm in the rear at all, but I don't ride big enough stuff to really know what the Phantom can handle. If this is truly a one, do it all bike, then I'd say stick to the Prime, we've all seen where FM rides and it's definitely got Prime territory - if anything build 2 wheelsets for XC days shod with lighter, faster rubber and for bigger AM days shod with burly, super knob beasts.

    Oh, and think you meant 35.5" for your inseam

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  24. #24
    FM
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    Quote Originally Posted by PeachesN'Cream View Post
    FM's measure request
    Nose of saddle to center top cap bolt = 18.5in
    Quote Originally Posted by jonshonda View Post
    Front of Saddle to Center of Bars 57cm
    I use a f'ed up saddle (Selle SMP Pro), so YMMV.
    57cm - 70mm stem= 50cm
    18.5"= 47cm

    So this tells me the large Prime would be 3cm longer than your Mason, in terms of seated climbing efective reach. Although who knows with that saddle. It would be great to have some more data points to confirm.

  25. #25
    Learning to Fly
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    Yeah 35.5 Inseam. I did my best to get my tape measure all up in there. Might not be perfect but better than asking my wife to get up in my business to to help fit a bike frame... Or actually, maybe I should try that line and see where it takes me : )

    If I went XL I'd run a 35mm stem. If I went Large I'd want to run a 50mm stem. And I currently run a 50mm stem on my Mason FS.

    I'm sure the Phantom is a ton of fun. But at my size and the range of terrain we ride here in the PNW the Prime is the right choice.

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