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  1. #1
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    5'8"-5'9" Motolite owners

    I need help deciding on which size to get a Motolite frame. I am 5'9" with a 30" inseam and am a little torn between getting a small or a medium. What size frame are you riding, and what type of riding do you do?

    I will be riding mostly all-mountain trails and some cross country; however, living in BC the frame will undoubtedly see some more aggressive terrain on the occasional shore ride. Most setups of the Motolites I've seen for riders my height are oriented towards cross country, but mine will definitely be setup as an all-purpose bike.

    My current hardtail has a 16" seat tube and a 23" top tube, and I am running it with a 75mm stem. For climbing, I have the seatpost up about 8", and I am in a comfortably upright position. When descending steep and bumpy sections, I generally slam the seat all the way down for the extra clearance.

    All signs point me towards a small, as it's the most similar in size to what I am currently riding. The top tube is only 1/4" shorter than what I'm used to, and a longer stem would easily compensate for that. I just need some assurance that I am making the correct decision in going with a small.

  2. #2
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    medium

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by dulyebr
    medium
    What are your reasons for going with a medium?

    Generally, for the riding I do I run my seat at a 19.5" length from the BB; however, when descending really steep sections (a la North Shore), I like to bring the seat all the way down to the 16" for as much clearance as I can get.

    If I go with a medium, I sacrifice this ability; I don't know if it's a sacrifice that I can make. With my inseam, seat post length is not an issue. The only compromise made is the top tube length, which can be addressed with a longer stem, if necessary. There's nothing I can do if I get a medium and find that the seat tube is too long for my liking...

  4. #4
    FM
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    medium for sure!

    check out my build if you haven't already, it's in the titus bike porn thread. I'm 5'8" with a longer like 32" inseam, I run 28" bars and just switched from a 70mm to a 90mm stem. My bike has a light but burly build for XC rides with stunts, jumps and steeps. Got some whistler XC under it recently. I ride the shore a fair bit, and although I take my FR bike instead, the motolite could handle it frome a geometry perspective no problem. In fact both my bikes fit about the same.

    I hear what you are saying about the seat tube length, but with a straight post you will be able to drop the saddle all the way down to the collar.

    One thing I would definately suggest for BC riding is a fork long enough to slack out the steering for steep gnarlies. Marzocchi all mountain 1, 130-150mm would be my first choice. You can rake it out to 150mm for the steepest descents, or crank it down (using ETA or TAS) for longer climbs. I run a all mountain SL at 140mm, it feels perfect for BC-XC type riding.

    edit- one more thought- if you go with a small, you'll have a shorter wheelbase which will move more weight over your front wheel if you run a longer stem. regardless of stem, you are also trading high-speed stability for low-speed manuverability. Better to go with a medium and short stem which will center your weight between the wheels rather then over them. Being an inch farther back is going to help more then being an inch lower when things go vertical.

  5. #5
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    I'm also 5'9 with a 30in inseam. You want a Medium.

  6. #6
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    I am 5"8, 30"inseam. Actually both small and medium should be fit.

    My previous bike was Small NRS.. then I ride on Small Blur (even shorter than NRS) for about 2 months..

    Now I am riding medium ML (for 1-2months). (90mm stem)

    For climbing, I feel medium size is better.

    For decends, I also set the seat all the way down to 19.5" (min lenght)..Before, I also worried about that it would be difficult to lay-back, but I found it was ok (of course, 18" is even better!!) .. Among three bikes with different sizes, I found small Blur was the most easy one to control... To be honest, I am still not fully used to the medium ML.. but it doesn't mean the size doesn't fit, just my skill is no good...


    If making the decision again, I will remain on medium for all-mountain purpose.


    **medium ML is using 2" shock, where small ML is only 1.5". Many people confirmed it makes no different. But personal I like longer shock if I can choose.

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    I think it makes a difference with the 2" shock. Generally people in our range of height are going to be a little heavy on a small bike. With the different leverages I found that I was able to blow through the travel too quickly. I'm 5'8" and 165lbs. I'm going to order the ML today!

  8. #8
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    Hey Small Miufahkiu

    There's alot of truth to what everybody is saying. What it comes down to is rider style and preference.

    I'm of similar build and back ground to you. Most of my bikes are 23" effective top tube. My other bikes are 22.5" and 23.5" ETT. With long travel forks I much prefer the smaller size frames. Not too sure exactly why but I think maybe for maneuverbility. I use a 90mm stem for trail/xc riding and switch over to a 70mm stem for chair lifts. I do own a small ML.

    Always stick with your first gut feeling.

  9. #9
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    I am 5' 7" with a 30inch inseam and I went with a medium and am REALLY REALLY happy with it. I will confess that it seemed large at first.... But once I got it dialed in I couldn't imagine being on one smaller!

  10. #10
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    I'm 5'9" with a 31" inseam and am very happy with a medium. I use a 90mm stem for cc riding and a 60mm stem for more freeride oriented riding. I run a Pike fork and have two wheelsets, one light and one beefy, and it works out really well. I was worried about the tall seattube, but it has not been an issue.

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rocker T
    There's alot of truth to what everybody is saying. What it comes down to is rider style and preference.

    I'm of similar build and back ground to you. Most of my bikes are 23" effective top tube. My other bikes are 22.5" and 23.5" ETT. With long travel forks I much prefer the smaller size frames. Not too sure exactly why but I think maybe for maneuverbility. I use a 90mm stem for trail/xc riding and switch over to a 70mm stem for chair lifts. I do own a small ML.

    Always stick with your first gut feeling.
    I'm also of similar build and background. I'm 5'8" with 30" inseam. Most of my bikes are 22.75" - 23" effective top tube. I came from 03 medium RX which had 23" ETT, but no clearance even with 80mm fork. In talking to few ML riders and Chad at RedBarn, I decided to go with small ML with 100mm stem, and it's a perfect setup for me. Although I would have liked the longer stroke shock on the medium, the shorter RP23 is handling my weight of 250 lbs quite well. I was involved in purchase of 3 ML frames recently (2 small and 1 medium). My friend who got the small is of same height with same inseam and he says that it fits him perfectly. I tried the medium that my other friend bought. He is 5'11" with 30" inseam. The medium was definitely rideable, and I can see myself riding it; however, small felt much better for me. Bottom line, if you can try out both you should do it and choose the one that you feel more comfortable with.

  12. #12
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    I am 5' 7" with a 30inch inseam too . Made the "mistake" of getting the small. I've not been thrilled. It goes beyound just frame size, the shoxk is a shorter unit with a different ratio. If you're a featherweight you may have no problems. I'm not - and did.


    You can read my trials here: Hey Whafe - crossposted from the Yeti forum.

  13. #13
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    Thanks

    Thank you all for your advice. I decided to go with a medium.

    I went for a ride on my hardtail today, setting my seat no lower than 19" from the BB on descents. The local trails aren't as gnarly as some of the Shore trails, but I'm confident that I can learn to descend with the seat at 19".

    The real deal breaker was the shock dimesions on the small frame. After reading, and sympathizing, with several small ML owners who were dissatisfied with its performance, I decided to get the medium. Granted my weight (155lbs) is proportional to my height so I may not suffer some of the suspension problems with the small frame, the 7.875"x2.0" shock size is much more common and easy to replace if I ever feel the need to.

    I will post pictures of the bike once it's built up. Thanks, once again.

  14. #14
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    Good luck Miufahkiu on your set up, I am 5'7" with 30 inseam and iam having so much fun with it..

  15. #15
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    Just chiming in for reassurance...I'm 5'9 w/ a 31 in. inseam (but have about 20 more lbs on you) and went with a medium. You made the right choice, I rode both and the medium is really what you're looking for (its beefier and seemed more stable). It will hold up really well for the riding you are planning to do. Enjoy!

  16. #16
    FM
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    Quote Originally Posted by miufahkiu
    Thank you all for your advice. I decided to go with a medium.
    Good call, it's all about wheelbase.

    Where in Canada are you? I ride in BC whenever possible- Mom was from Revelstoke. I've ridden all up and down the sea-to-sky, some road riding in the islands, and central BC- Kelowna, penticton, etc....planning the next whistler trip..... might do cheakamus challenge again.....And I LOVE the shore....

    you'll love the motolite- just got back from 3+ hrs on mine...

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