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.
mtn. biking 101
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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  1. #1
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    New question here. Haro V4 sizing...

    Hi all
    I recently purchased Haro V4, size 20’’ and I think it might be too big for me. I am 6’ with 33-34’’ inseam. Most sizing tools (such as http://www.wrenchscience.com/Store.aspx?stylecode=M )give 19’’ as my ideal size, but not all ( http://www.wheelies.co.uk/advice/sizing/sizing.asp) .
    I chose size 20 based on a very short test ride and the advice from the salesman.

    There are two reasons why I think the bike is too big for me:
    1) it looks huge
    2) after the first longer ride I had paralyzing pain in my lower back, and during the ride I felt the urge to sit more upright, as if I was overstretched.

    So, is the bike too big? Is there any point in trying to adjust the bike or should I just sell this one while it’s still almost unused and buy a smaller frame? Should i post this on Haro forum? I would really appreciate some help on this.

  2. #2
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    congrats on your purchase.

    its sounds like you may need to get a higher rise bar or a shorter stem with more of an angle to get you up higher. you could either be a 19 or a 20 but the bike you bought only comes in a 18 or 20. if you can go back to the shop you got it at and ask to ride the 18. the main thing you will feel is that the bike is going to be shorter than the one you are on but not much higher.

    also, before you head out on a ride try stretching your lower back and other areas for about 15 min. it does wonders when you're first getting used to bike.

  3. #3
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    Seat tube size is pretty much unimportant, what matters most is top tube length, which determines how stretched out you are.

    Your feeling of being too stretched out can be helped with riser bars, a shorter and higer stem, and bringing the seat forward on the rails more. If that doesn't do it, then you need a smaller frame.

  4. #4
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    Double posts are getting annoying.

  5. #5
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    Thanks for the replies
    I did test ride both 18 and 20. By test ride I mean 30 seconds on each bike in a busy street. They both seemed ok…
    This just shows that the only proper way to test a bike is to take it for a long diverse ride (which was impossible because none of the bike shops in my area have that option). I guess the same is true when changing bicycle parts…
    Anyway, do you think longer cranks could help? Is it possible that Haro doesn’t make a V series frame that would fit me? What kinds of pain can i expect if i replace 20 with the 18? Should i forget Haro and go for some other manufacturer with different frame geometry?

  6. #6
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    Yes is it possible that this frame just doesn't fit you. Thankfully there are hundreds of other manufacturers to choose from.

    Longer cranks would not help fit, sorry.

    If you feel to stretched out, have your LBS swap the stem a few times for you. Usually LBS' have a few different ones you can try out, and they should do it no problem, it's an easy swap, takes about a minute when it's all said and done.

  7. #7
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    Thank you once again.
    Let me explain the logic behind crank length question. Besides feeling stretched out, I also feel that the seat post is too high compared to the handlebar (it is ~2-3 inches higher). The bike already has a rise bar - Alloy Riser Bar 30mm Rise x 620mm Wide. If I get a handlebar with even more rise, I imagine the riding position would be too high and unstable, like riding on a camel. Do longer cranks mean that I can lower the seatpost?
    I thought about your statement that top tube length is more important than seat tube size. However, the practical implications are still not completely clear to me. Considering my build, long legs and short torso, more like a spider than a human ; do you think that a smaller frame with the same geometry would only make my problems worse?
    And seriously, is it allowed to open the same/very similar topics on different forums here?

  8. #8
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    Just went through the same exercise. If you have long legs and a shorter torso, the "average" sizing formula may not work. I am 5" 11" with a 34" inseam and feel that a large frame (19) is too big, kinda leaned over with too much weight on my hands. I went to an 18". The post is way out but the TT is just about right. An inch makes a lot of difference but can usually be made up by stem/seat adjustment (at least in my case).

  9. #9
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    hi Bob
    Let me see if I got you right… 18’’ frame works much better than the 19’’ but it is still uncomfortable?

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by nesto
    hi Bob
    Let me see if I got you right… 18’’ frame works much better than the 19’’ but it is still uncomfortable?
    18 is great, its just that the seat post within 3 inches of max extention.

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