1. The most important thing about buying a new bike is to make sure it fits. The only way you'll know if the bike is right for you is to size up the bike and make sure that the bike's geometry matches your body's geometry. Ask questions and do some research.
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2. If possible, try to find a shop that will let you demo the bike on real dirt. Five minutes in a parking lot won't cut it. You wouldn't buy a car without a real world test drive, and a bike should be no different.
3. Don't belive the hype. Just because your favorite rider or best friend rides a certain bike, that doesn't mean that's the best one for you. Have an open mind and be realistic about your needs and ability.
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Thread: Frame too big?

  1. #1
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    Frame too big?

    I am looking at a 19.5 inch bike. I am 5' 8". I wear 36 X 30 pants. will this bike be too big for me? Can I "stretch" a little and make it work? Any real problems?

  2. #2
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    Most likely too big. You'll be stretched out and you'll probably fatigue in your neck and back more quickly than on a properly sized bike. You also may have issues in bike handling due to your riding position. You might be able to compensate to a small degree with a shorter stem and a forward saddle position, but at your height I would suspect that you won't ever be able to make that bike fit in the classical thinking of "proper".
    Don't you hate it when a sentence doesn't end the way you think it octopus?

  3. #3
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    I'm 5' 6" and on a 18" "Medium" frame on my DB. I do get tension a lil soreness in my neck..
    I always thought it was too big, but people say I look fine on it.

    Edit to add: I just did a Mountain bike fit calculation on myself an dit puts me on a 17" frame.

    My bike is an 18" frame so I guess it's not to big. I wish I did try the small Response though that day.

    Oh well live and learn, but if yo uspend 2,000 plus....better make damn sure you get the right size.

    Gotta do your homework.

  4. #4
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    Most likely too long. A typical 18" or "M" frame is what you should be looking at.
    My Cannondale Lefty keeps failing....

  5. #5
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    i too have a question when it comes to frame size.
    6ft medium frame? how much clearance between the top tube and jewels should you have.
    test rode a cannondale trail 5 (med) was dangerously close to the top tube. whats the proper size for me

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by mjb757 View Post
    i too have a question when it comes to frame size.
    6ft medium frame? how much clearance between the top tube and jewels should you have.
    test rode a cannondale trail 5 (med) was dangerously close to the top tube. whats the proper size for me
    im 6 ft and I ride a 19" trek frame with a 26er or 29er.... both bikes I ride the 19" frame.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by mjb757 View Post
    i too have a question when it comes to frame size.
    6ft medium frame? how much clearance between the top tube and jewels should you have.
    test rode a cannondale trail 5 (med) was dangerously close to the top tube. whats the proper size for me
    Standover has little to nothing to do with a proper fitting bike. As I've heard it put; are you going to stand over your bike or are you going to ride it? Top tube is where the bulk of the fit happens.
    Don't you hate it when a sentence doesn't end the way you think it octopus?

  8. #8
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    just a question
    but when you come off the seat no problems if feet dont touch the ground you run into a problem right?
    how would you size yourself for a cannondale
    appreciate anymore advice given

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    Quote Originally Posted by mjb757 View Post
    just a question
    but when you come off the seat no problems if feet dont touch the ground you run into a problem right?
    how would you size yourself for a cannondale
    appreciate anymore advice given
    Go to a bike shop, they'll take a look at you on the bike and let you know what fits you. As for standover, you almost always put a foot down and tip the bike to the side. You deal with a tall standover if you need to for your body fit. If you're concerned try different brands of bikes, you might find one that fits better.
    Don't you hate it when a sentence doesn't end the way you think it octopus?

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by zebrahum View Post
    Go to a bike shop, they'll take a look at you on the bike and let you know what fits you. As for standover, you almost always put a foot down and tip the bike to the side. You deal with a tall standover if you need to for your body fit. If you're concerned try different brands of bikes, you might find one that fits better.
    ^^^This. Even from Cannondale, the clearance to the top tube will be different between models. Top tubes have varying degrees of slope, so test riding is essential if you have no previous frame of reference to draw from.

  11. #11
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    im 6'4 and Im starting to believe my XXL 23" frame is too big too. Handle bars feel too far away. time to sell and lose money.
    '98 GT Backwoods

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    Quote Originally Posted by adrianm1188 View Post
    im 6'4 and Im starting to believe my XXL 23" frame is too big too. Handle bars feel too far away. time to sell and lose money.
    Go to a shop and see if they have a stem they can throw on there for a test ride. You can fit a short stem on there and bring your bars closer to you. Depends on the stem length you have now but usually XXL bikes are fitted with pretty long stems from the manufacturer.
    Don't you hate it when a sentence doesn't end the way you think it octopus?

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    Quote Originally Posted by adrianm1188 View Post
    im 6'4 and Im starting to believe my XXL 23" frame is too big too. Handle bars feel too far away. time to sell and lose money.
    I'm 6'2" and ride a L, you're probably perfect for an XL. I'm right inbetween L and XL.

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    Quote Originally Posted by zebrahum View Post
    Go to a shop and see if they have a stem they can throw on there for a test ride. You can fit a short stem on there and bring your bars closer to you. Depends on the stem length you have now but usually XXL bikes are fitted with pretty long stems from the manufacturer.
    yea but I think weight is also a issue. I think im better off trying to sell it for a XL. I just feel dumb purchasing it out of impulse/fear of losing a good deal, before researching it.
    '98 GT Backwoods

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by adrianm1188 View Post
    im 6'4 and Im starting to believe my XXL 23" frame is too big too. Handle bars feel too far away. time to sell and lose money.
    you may not need to sell it, i am not a expert but i am sure one of them will. Try switching out stem for a shorter one and slide your seat forward a 1/4 inch or so

  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by adrianm1188 View Post
    yea but I think weight is also a issue. I think im better off trying to sell it for a XL. I just feel dumb purchasing it out of impulse/fear of losing a good deal, before researching it.
    I don't know, I wouldn't pick a 21" bike for you just from seeing your height. Unless you have unusual body proportions, 23" should be a reasonable fit. What issues are you having?
    Don't you hate it when a sentence doesn't end the way you think it octopus?

  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by zebrahum View Post
    I don't know, I wouldn't pick a 21" bike for you just from seeing your height. Unless you have unusual body proportions, 23" should be a reasonable fit. What issues are you having?
    1) Bike weight. I would much rather have a lighter frame by having 2 less inches of metal.
    2) Trapazius muscles always sore from handle bar being too low/far. (already maximized spacers under stem, wont go higher, need new stem or an adjustable one.
    3) I feel like majority of my weight is on the seat.
    4) 3.0 cheap components. Would much rather get a 1.0 for 200$ more that would a)ride better, b) not need a new stem ($$) and c) last me forever...but like I said, I didnt research and thought 3.0 was the higher end.


    I will get measurements soon, once everyone's awake and im able to grab a tape measure from noisy garage. But lets hope for the best!
    '98 GT Backwoods

  18. #18
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    Well....

    Quote Originally Posted by adrianm1188 View Post
    1) Bike weight. I would much rather have a lighter frame by having 2 less inches of metal.
    2) Trapazius muscles always sore from handle bar being too low/far. (already maximized spacers under stem, wont go higher, need new stem or an adjustable one.
    3) I feel like majority of my weight is on the seat.
    4) 3.0 cheap components. Would much rather get a 1.0 for 200$ more that would a)ride better, b) not need a new stem ($$) and c) last me forever...but like I said, I didnt research and thought 3.0 was the higher end.


    I will get measurements soon, once everyone's awake and im able to grab a tape measure from noisy garage. But lets hope for the best!
    If you want a new bike, you're certainly not going to find too many people here to talk you out of it. It could be that your current bike is too big. I'd head in to a a shop and ask them to take a quick look at your fit. My thoughts on your points:

    1. Unless you're at your ideal body weight, I wouldn't worry too much about the few grams of difference based on frame size. The proper size is far more important than weight.

    2. As zebrahum pointed out, this is likely your stem. Again, your local shop (or local mountain bike club) will likely have a stems you can test.

    3. First, it's supposed to be. Second, this contradicts #2. If you're too stretched out (sore traps, etc.) then you likely have too much weight on your bars.

    In general, when you're sitting on your saddle with your hands on your bar, your arms should be at a 90 degree angle to your torso.

    4. You have your bike. If it's the proper size, then I'd suggest keeping it and riding it as much as you can. You're going to break your components eventually. When you do, upgrade them to the parts you want.
    JPark - 3.5- don't listen to dremer

  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by adrianm1188 View Post
    1) Bike weight. I would much rather have a lighter frame by having 2 less inches of metal.
    2) Trapazius muscles always sore from handle bar being too low/far. (already maximized spacers under stem, wont go higher, need new stem or an adjustable one.
    3) I feel like majority of my weight is on the seat.
    4) 3.0 cheap components. Would much rather get a 1.0 for 200$ more that would a)ride better, b) not need a new stem ($$) and c) last me forever...but like I said, I didnt research and thought 3.0 was the higher end.


    I will get measurements soon, once everyone's awake and im able to grab a tape measure from noisy garage. But lets hope for the best!
    I guess we've successfully thread-jacked the hell out of this one but:

    1) You don't save a signifigant amount of weight from sizing down. Aluminium isn't that heavy.
    2) Your traps may or may not be caused by your riding position, see comment on #3
    3) If you feel like the majority of your weight is on your seat then you are probably not on an improper fitting bike. If your bike were too large, you put more weight on your hands which is usually accompanied by a complaint of numb or sore hands. Basically the riding position becomes stretched out causing you to break at the waist more which moves your center of weight so that you need to support your weight on your hands. This would have caused more pain in the traps though so it's hard to say. You are saying your weight is on the saddle which is the proper way to be on a bicycle.
    4) Not a bad point, it's always nice to have longer lasting parts.

    Go to a bike shop and get fit. Try a couple different shops to make sure you're getting the best fit and make sure you try different brands because they all fit differently. In the end, I suspect you can get a cheap stem (~$20) to fix your current fit issues but it won't fix your #4 issue.
    Don't you hate it when a sentence doesn't end the way you think it octopus?

  20. #20
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    I guess we've successfully thread-jacked the hell out of this one but:
    Actually, I've learned something from reading your replies.

  21. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cedarbranchbiker1 View Post
    Actually, I've learned something from reading your replies.
    Yea my apologies too, was not my intention. Just figured it was on the subject.
    '98 GT Backwoods

  22. #22
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    Here's my rough estimates on body measurements. Not exact but i'm alone right now and using a steel tape measure. :P

    http://www.competitivecyclist.com/za..._ANSWER_8=75.5

    Just measure my bike:
    -Top tube length is 24.5
    -seat tube is 23" (from bottom of bike to top of where the saddle tube is inserted) . (XXL GT bike)
    -Stem is 11.5 cm
    '98 GT Backwoods

  23. #23
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    I am 5'4" with a 29" inseam. What would be recommended for me? Thanks.

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    Quote Originally Posted by c21johnson View Post
    I am 5'4" with a 29" inseam. What would be recommended for me? Thanks.
    Same thing I recommend to everyone else; go to a bike shop and get fit then try bikes from different manufacturers. Buy the one you like best.
    Don't you hate it when a sentence doesn't end the way you think it octopus?

  25. #25
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    I'm 5"7ish and ride a Fuji Small 29er. Their small is 17".

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