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  1. #1
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    FSR XC for myy wife - size issue!!

    There are some good deals on 05 FSR XC's in the UK at the moment and my wife is looking for her first proper mountain bike.

    She is 5'2".

    We are struggling with the size at the moment and whether a WSD is necessary. (Ever since she found our there are WSD's, all other bikes are a 'mans bike'').

    She has borrowed a men's 15" Rockhopper from a mate and that seemed to fit OK with a TT length of 550mm. The FSR XC small mens TT is 551mm, which would seem sensible as is similar to the one she has tried, but the stem on the FSR 'looks' shorter than the Rockhopper. The WSD small FSR XC is 535mm TT and the medium is 560mm TT (with shorter stem than the Rockhopper?).
    The WSD FSR XC has lighter fork springs, womens saddle and bars. (Can you buy these Diva springs as spares?).

    So we are struggling to decide which way to go and it is unlikely we will be able to try the various sizes before we buy.

    Any 5'2"ish ladies out there with any advice to point us in the right direction.

  2. #2
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    Try emailing Specialized UK at Sal@Specializeduk.com - they've been very good at answering similar queries from me about the new Tricross - pretty promptly too.

  3. #3
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    druidh.
    Thanks for the tip.

  4. #4
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    My GF is 5'-3" tall and rides a men's small '04 Stumpy FSR (same geometry as '05 FSR XC). However, she has quite a bit longer arms than the average person her height. She has a 90 mm stem on her bike and rides technical XC. I had to change the handlebar, saddle, grips, and fork spring to better suit her petite woman size (only 105 lbs).

    I would think your GF would probably fit the woman's small quite well, depending on her proportions. Stem length would be around 75-90 mm depending on the type of riding she does.

    The woman specific model may not be of any benefit to her, the components (fork and saddle) may not work for her anyways. The handle bar isn't even woman specific.

    The Manitou Axel Comp Diva light spring rate fork on the '05 FSR XC Women's bike will come with the Soft ride kit rated for a 130-150 lbs rider. There isn't a ride kit available for that fork for a lighter rider. MY GF's bike came with the Manitou Black fork which also offers a X-Soft ride kit for riders 130 lbs and below.

    I would say to not worry about the woman speciifc model but to buy the bike that fits and change the components to suit her.
    There is no added value to my participation - in fact, just more confusion.

  5. #5
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    I have a small sized 2005 FSR-XC and I am 5'6" guy. I would say she would be good with the small.

    John

  6. #6
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    Good job! Men's Small should be great

    My girlfriend is 162cm tall and rides a Small Epic Marathon with 551mm toptube. She uses a 75mm stem, straight handlebar and a layback Thomson post. The fork is air sprung Fox Float that can be adjusted for her weight (although RS SID, Manitou Scareb could be better for petite riders). She is using Terry Butterfly saddle and shorter 170mm XT cranks.

    So, I think that the normal Small model should fit your wife fine with maybe some part upgrades later on.

    GearHead: What is Woman specific handlebar ? Shorter ? Titus recommends women to use normal straight handlebar (~560mm wide) instead of riser bar.

  7. #7
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    Idea! Get a demo, or two...

    Where are you based ?

    Have you tried looking for demo rides ?

    My partner test rode a Scott Genuis Contessa from Bucks Bikes, a Trek Fuel EX WSD and briefly a XC FSR from Pitsford Cycles (just north of Northampton).

    From experience, I expect that your misses will appreciate the differences a WSD steed provides. My better half tried to get used to a small Marin fully for over 3yrs before finally throwing in the towel.
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  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by Archangel

    GearHead: What is Woman specific handlebar ? Shorter ? Titus recommends women to use normal straight handlebar (~560mm wide) instead of riser bar.
    Actually you nailed off both things I did to make it better suit my GF. I either needed to use a straight bar with 5 deg backsweep or I have found that the Raceface bars with 5 deg backsweep and some upsweep work good for woman too. I chose to use a Racface bar on her FS bike and have a flat bar on another one of her bikes. I have tried bars as wide as 21" (535 mm), 22" (560 mm), 23" (585 mm), and 25" (635 mm) for my GF and she seems to like the 23" bar best for trail riding. My GF is quite petite with narrow shoulders so I am sure results will vary.

    I have also gottem her to try the specialized shaped bar, Easton shaped bar, and FSA shaped bar.

    Specialize just sputs on their normal "one size fits all" bar.
    There is no added value to my participation - in fact, just more confusion.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by Farqui
    Where are you based ?

    Have you tried looking for demo rides ?

    My partner test rode a Scott Genuis Contessa from Bucks Bikes, a Trek Fuel EX WSD and briefly a XC FSR from Pitsford Cycles (just north of Northampton).

    From experience, I expect that your misses will appreciate the differences a WSD steed provides. My better half tried to get used to a small Marin fully for over 3yrs before finally throwing in the towel.
    We are in Kendal and will visit Bike Treks (Ambleside) at the weekend to see what they have to try-out..

    Thanks for all the advice.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by GearHead
    Actually you nailed off both things I did to make it better suit my GF. I either needed to use a straight bar with 5 deg backsweep or I have found that the Raceface bars with 5 deg backsweep and some upsweep work good for woman too. I chose to use a Racface bar on her FS bike and have a flat bar on another one of her bikes. I have tried bars as wide as 21" (535 mm), 22" (560 mm), 23" (585 mm), and 25" (635 mm) for my GF and she seems to like the 23" bar best for trail riding. My GF is quite petite with narrow shoulders so I am sure results will vary.

    I have also gottem her to try the specialized shaped bar, Easton shaped bar, and FSA shaped bar.

    Specialize just sputs on their normal "one size fits all" bar.
    As I built the bike for my GF from the frame up, I could use parts suitable for her right away. For handlebar we chose an Extralite The Bar UL (580mm, 4 deg sweep) and Extralite UltraEnds barends thus making the grip width as wide as in 560mm bar. The grips are thin Titec Pork Rinds which are also very light.

    As for my previously mentioned Titus article, it's found in here:http://www.titusti.com/womenfit.html
    Highly recommended reading for everyone who's buying/building a bike for a woman.

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