Bikes/measurements to consider if I want to take some weight off my wrists- Mtbr.com
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  1. #1
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    Bikes/measurements to consider if I want to take some weight off my wrists

    This year I went from a 2016 Giant Anthem SX (size L) to a 2016 Transition Smuggler (size L). Definitely a leap into modern geometry, and while I love how it rides, I hate how much weight it's putting on my wrists (the 800 mm bars and 150 mm dropper is probably not helping).

    I am going to try a few tweaks to see if I can make it work, but I also want to start considering what geometry numbers I should be looking at with my next bike. It looks like my transition (pun unintended) between bikes came with a longer reach, steeper seat angle, taller stack (?)

    So if I want to take advantage of modern geometry, but avoid putting a shit ton of weight on my wrists while seated, what figures should I be looking at? Are there some examples of bikes I should consider. I was eyeing a Devinci Troy medium, since it has a shorter reach/seat tube than the Smuggler, but still a decent wheelbase and slack head tube. Thoughts?

    My measurements- I'm 5'10" with a 31 inch inseam and averagish (maybe slightly below average) wingspan for my height.

  2. #2
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    I'm your height with roughly the same inseam. I used to ride L frames across the board. As reach has gotten longer I've changed too: I ride M frames these days.

    That's not the whole answer, but it's a pretty good start.

  3. #3
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    Your legs are way shorter than mine so finding a bike without that problem should be easy.
    I suggest you start from scratch.
    Forget new, sizes....
    Try a bike, change size if not comfy.
    Maybe pull in your levers 1 cm each side, try, repeat if needed, cut at proper size.
    Try pushing your saddle forward.

  4. #4
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    Maybe cut your bars down or try one with a bit more rise. Also try Ergon grips.
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  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by roma258 View Post
    This year I went from a 2016 Giant Anthem SX (size L) to a 2016 Transition Smuggler (size L). Definitely a leap into modern geometry, and while I love how it rides, I hate how much weight it's putting on my wrists (the 800 mm bars and 150 mm dropper is probably not helping).

    I am going to try a few tweaks to see if I can make it work, but I also want to start considering what geometry numbers I should be looking at with my next bike. It looks like my transition (pun unintended) between bikes came with a longer reach, steeper seat angle, taller stack (?)

    So if I want to take advantage of modern geometry, but avoid putting a shit ton of weight on my wrists while seated, what figures should I be looking at? Are there some examples of bikes I should consider. I was eyeing a Devinci Troy medium, since it has a shorter reach/seat tube than the Smuggler, but still a decent wheelbase and slack head tube. Thoughts?

    My measurements- I'm 5'10" with a 31 inch inseam and averagish (maybe slightly below average) wingspan for my height.
    If you've got too much pressure on your hands there are two significant things to focus on. The bike, or geometry of said bike, is not necessarily wrong for you. You just need to adjust it to your body proportions or your liking.

    Trim the handlebars down to something around 750-760, and consider a riser bar. A picture of your bike from the side would show the handlebar to saddle relationship height wise. This would help advise you as to the handlebar height.

    Your 150 dropper has NOTHING to do with the fit or hand discomfort. It's just a seatpost that goes up and down. Your saddle position (fore/aft and pitch) can have a significant impact on both the feel of the bike while seated and also the pressure on your hands.

    Step 1 would be cut the bars down and/or go with a riser bar and trim them down a bit. Post a pic and it will be easier to advise you.
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  6. #6
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    I went from a 2013 Anthem to a 2019 Trance and had some wrist pain at first, but I knew it was related to the bar width (780). I asked the mechanic at my shop if he thought I should cut them down a little, and he said maybe, but that he'd give it a month, maybe two, and see if my body adjusted to the width and my wrists quit hurting, because ultimately, I'd probably like the wide bars better than if I cut them down. I don't remember where in that two months my wrists quit hurting, but they did. Maybe give it some time before you start changing things up, if the bar width is something new for you?

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by roma258 View Post
    This year I went from a 2016 Giant Anthem SX (size L) to a 2016 Transition Smuggler (size L). Definitely a leap into modern geometry, and while I love how it rides, I hate how much weight it's putting on my wrists (the 800 mm bars and 150 mm dropper is probably not helping).

    I am going to try a few tweaks to see if I can make it work, but I also want to start considering what geometry numbers I should be looking at with my next bike. It looks like my transition (pun unintended) between bikes came with a longer reach, steeper seat angle, taller stack (?)

    So if I want to take advantage of modern geometry, but avoid putting a shit ton of weight on my wrists while seated, what figures should I be looking at? Are there some examples of bikes I should consider. I was eyeing a Devinci Troy medium, since it has a shorter reach/seat tube than the Smuggler, but still a decent wheelbase and slack head tube. Thoughts?

    My measurements- I'm 5'10" with a 31 inch inseam and averagish (maybe slightly below average) wingspan for my height.
    I just went through this and I'm far from a numbers guy. I'm just shy of 5'11'' with a 31'' inseam.
    I bought a new Ripley and no matter what I did, it wasn't comfortable. My best estimation is a combination, steep seat tube+ long reach+ long top tube.

    The Ripley has a 76 STA, I also owned a Canfield Riot with a 77 STA but never had wrist pain but it had a 1.2'' shorter TTL and 3/4'' shorter reach.
    I have a 50, 60 and 70mm stem sitting around and some 720 bars and 800mm bars. Tried a bunch of combos and just couldn't get comfortable on the V4.

    Also, I'm on the East Coast so a lot of rolling terrain- basically flat with some small hills here and there- I don't think the new geo is good for it.


    I made myself a little Excel sheet to easily look at the numbers. I found a great deal on a brand new Ripley LS V3 so I went that way. As much as I hate what Pivot did to the Trail 429 with superboost on a 120mm bike- I will say they didn't go crazy with the geo. Depending on the travel you want, look at Pivot Trail 429, Mach 4 SL and the Giant Trance all in Mediums.


    Like Mike posted above, I used to ride larges, it looks like I'll be moving to a medium on my next bike, but be careful with that as well, the Ripley V4 in medium would have been too cramped I believe for me.
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    Quote Originally Posted by TwoTone View Post
    I just went through this and I'm far from a numbers guy. I'm just shy of 5'11'' with a 31'' inseam.
    I bought a new Ripley and no matter what I did, it wasn't comfortable. My best estimation is a combination, steep seat tube+ long reach+ long top tube.

    The Ripley has a 76 STA, I also owned a Canfield Riot with a 77 STA but never had wrist pain but it had a 1.2'' shorter TTL and 3/4'' shorter reach.
    I have a 50, 60 and 70mm stem sitting around and some 720 bars and 800mm bars. Tried a bunch of combos and just couldn't get comfortable on the V4.

    Also, I'm on the East Coast so a lot of rolling terrain- basically flat with some small hills here and there- I don't think the new geo is good for it.


    I made myself a little Excel sheet to easily look at the numbers. I found a great deal on a brand new Ripley LS V3 so I went that way. As much as I hate what Pivot did to the Trail 429 with superboost on a 120mm bike- I will say they didn't go crazy with the geo. Depending on the travel you want, look at Pivot Trail 429, Mach 4 SL and the Giant Trance all in Mediums.


    Like Mike posted above, I used to ride larges, it looks like I'll be moving to a medium on my next bike, but be careful with that as well, the Ripley V4 in medium would have been too cramped I believe for me.
    Thanks, very interesting to read through someone else's thought process. I too put together a little spreadsheet when I was bike shopping and thought that the geo for the Transition should work, but in the end, I think the seat angle and the 150 dropper (which I have slammed down in seat tube as far as it'll go), combined with the reach just put too much pressure on my wrist. I'll try a few adjustments to the cockpit to see if I can make it work, but may have to move to another bike.

    I wonder if there are any companies, perhaps based on the east coast, considering going against the current trend, or at least modifying it to appeal to different types of riding. Maybe Cannondale or Trek could tap into a different market.

  9. #9
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    @ roma it seems you are quite perplex.
    To enjoy a bike 4 hrs daily there is 1 important number good till you die.
    Saddle height. You can find how to mesure it on youtube.
    Any bike is the same for you. Copy the one that was working on the previous bike you enjoyed.
    B- test moving your saddle forward/backward, if you are comfortable riding 2 hours, no knee pain, that is probably good.
    C- time to adjust your cockpit.
    Never mention dropper, it is irrelevant. If you cannot have your saddle at the proper height change seatpost.
    Road, mountain, fat all bikes wheel, tires use the same saddle height. Mine is 30.25 in. a pro fit paid 5 years ago establihed it. I can only be within 30 to 30.5 so the rest is kind of simple when you start on a good base.

  10. #10
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    Things to consider with steep STA and long bikes. Since most of the issues come from long seated rides.

    Saddle tilt and shape. A saddle with any lip in the back will push you forward. And a degree or two tilt up at the nose will help.

    Slam the seat back to see if it helps, 9 point 8 makes a offset dropper if this helps.

    Higher bars than saddle, the forward seating puts more weight on the bars, so we don't need to have the bars low for front traction, and roll the bars so there isn't any up-sweep.

    Get some grips that you can move the grips in a little at a time and makes sure your brakes are inline with your index finger.

    Last IMHO steep STA and Short travel bikes don't mix. A 76 STA will be steeper on a 120mm bike than a 140mm bike when seated and the bike sags. So unless you're doing long climbs there is a lot of time your weight is tipped forward. A 74-75 makes more sence.

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by roma258 View Post
    Thanks, very interesting to read through someone else's thought process. I too put together a little spreadsheet when I was bike shopping and thought that the geo for the Transition should work, but in the end, I think the seat angle and the 150 dropper (which I have slammed down in seat tube as far as it'll go), combined with the reach just put too much pressure on my wrist. I'll try a few adjustments to the cockpit to see if I can make it work, but may have to move to another bike.

    I wonder if there are any companies, perhaps based on the east coast, considering going against the current trend, or at least modifying it to appeal to different types of riding. Maybe Cannondale or Trek could tap into a different market.
    You keep mentioning the dropper- that has nothing to do with it as already mentioned. If you are setting saddle height correctly then it will be the same with a solid seat post, 75, 100, 125 or 200mm dropper- saddle height is the same.
    The only issue a dropper can cause is not getting the saddle low enough- that is a completely different issue.
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  12. #12
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    Maybe your dropper is a problem. If you have it slammed all the way down in the frame maybe 150mm is too long and your seat is a little too high. This will put more pressure on your hands. You also shouldn't be laying all your weight on your hands when you ride. Your core should be holding you up. If you are not putting all of your weight on your hands then look at the angle your wrist is bent when you ride. It should be pretty straight.

    Before cutting your bars you can just move the controls in a bit and grip further in when you ride. That way you aren't just taking a shot in the dark to find out you shouldn't have cut them in the first place. Rotating your bars a little in either direction might help also. Keep making small adjustments until you feel it is the best you can get, then make more permanent changes when you have an idea of what helped the most.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Kolchak View Post
    Maybe your dropper is a problem. If you have it slammed all the way down in the frame maybe 150mm is too long and your seat is a little too high. This will put more pressure on your hands. You also shouldn't be laying all your weight on your hands when you ride. Your core should be holding you up. If you are not putting all of your weight on your hands then look at the angle your wrist is bent when you ride. It should be pretty straight.

    Before cutting your bars you can just move the controls in a bit and grip further in when you ride. That way you aren't just taking a shot in the dark to find out you shouldn't have cut them in the first place. Rotating your bars a little in either direction might help also. Keep making small adjustments until you feel it is the best you can get, then make more permanent changes when you have an idea of what helped the most.
    Yeah, the reason I keep mentioning the 150 dropper is that I literally can't get the saddle height any lower at this point. I'd have to go to a 125, which is a bit of a spend. Might just go that path anyway.

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    Quote Originally Posted by roma258 View Post
    Yeah, the reason I keep mentioning the 150 dropper is that I literally can't get the saddle height any lower at this point. I'd have to go to a 125, which is a bit of a spend. Might just go that path anyway.
    It doesn't matter if the seat post is slammed as long as it's the right height which you never answer- is your seat at the right height?

    My 125mm dropper is slammed all the way down, but my saddle is at the right height.
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    Quote Originally Posted by roma258 View Post
    Yeah, the reason I keep mentioning the 150 dropper is that I literally can't get the saddle height any lower at this point. I'd have to go to a 125, which is a bit of a spend. Might just go that path anyway.
    Just put an ad to trade it, facebook, etc...
    Twice i got tires i wanted just trading what i did not want.

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    Quote Originally Posted by TwoTone View Post
    It doesn't matter if the seat post is slammed as long as it's the right height which you never answer- is your seat at the right height?

    My 125mm dropper is slammed all the way down, but my saddle is at the right height.
    Not sure why people are having a hard time with this. Clearly I want to try a lower saddle height, but with the 150 dropper slammed all the way down, I still don't feel like it's low enough. That's the only reason I've mentioned it. Anyway, thanks for the feedback.

  17. #17
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    If your dropper is slammed and your saddle isn't low enough for comfortable leg movement while pedalling then you definitely need a shorter dropper (or perhaps one with a lower profile head depending on how much lower you need the saddle). And that may be a part of the problem here.

    IMO, too much weight on the hands doesn't sound like a "modern geometry" issue as much as just a general fit issue; first thing I'd do is try lift the bard up, then move your grips etc inwards (try that before you commit to cutting the bars), then try a shorter stem if you still feel like you're reaching too far forward rather than sitting centrally.

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    Quote Originally Posted by roma258 View Post
    Not sure why people are having a hard time with this. Clearly I want to try a lower saddle height, but with the 150 dropper slammed all the way down, I still don't feel like it's low enough. That's the only reason I've mentioned it. Anyway, thanks for the feedback.
    The thing is we can't assume your level of experience, lowering the saddle just to lower the saddle isn't good either unless it needs to be for proper fit. Too low of a saddle isn't good.

    So the simple question you keep dodging is - Is your seat currently at the proper saddle height?

    If it is, lowering it just to virtually increase stack is the wrong way to go about it.
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  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by roma258 View Post
    This year I went from a 2016 Giant Anthem SX (size L) to a 2016 Transition Smuggler (size L). Definitely a leap into modern geometry, and while I love how it rides, I hate how much weight it's putting on my wrists (the 800 mm bars and 150 mm dropper is probably not helping).

    I am going to try a few tweaks to see if I can make it work, but I also want to start considering what geometry numbers I should be looking at with my next bike. It looks like my transition (pun unintended) between bikes came with a longer reach, steeper seat angle, taller stack (?)

    So if I want to take advantage of modern geometry, but avoid putting a shit ton of weight on my wrists while seated, what figures should I be looking at? Are there some examples of bikes I should consider. I was eyeing a Devinci Troy medium, since it has a shorter reach/seat tube than the Smuggler, but still a decent wheelbase and slack head tube. Thoughts?

    My measurements- I'm 5'10" with a 31 inch inseam and averagish (maybe slightly below average) wingspan for my height.
    Dropper means nothing, that's just seat height, fixed or dropped post is immaterial. Steeper STA would help in your scenario, so it's not the seat post.

    Bar width and stem length matter, try cutting down those really wide bars and going to a 35mm stem. I'm 6' with extra long arms and wide shoulders, but my bars are two inches narrower than yours. Remember, your riding a bicycle, not pretending to be an airplane

    Also try sliding your seat forward, that'll give you 5-10mm less ETT.

    A riser bar or raising your bar if you have enough steerer, this was also shorten the cockpit.

    Unless you have neck issues, really short arms/torso, the large frame should be okay unless you simply don't jive with a longer reach bike.

    EDIT: Ya got a 34mm difference in reach between the twi bikes, the Smug has a much steeper STA, a much slacker HTA, 29" wheels, and a short chainstay. Nice bike, but that's a lot to change between bikes.

    Stock stem is 40mm, so drop to a 35mm (net -5mm), slide your seat forward (-5mm), cut your bars to 740mm (virtual -10mm), raise your bars 10-20mm (-5mm), so now you've reduced ETT 25mm, probably fit fine

    Honestly, I think those 800mm bars are your primary issue, that makes my hands hurt just thinking about!
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  20. #20
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    Lot's of folks not getting what the OP is saying. With the 150 dropper, the saddle height is too high even with the dropper fully inserted. You want the saddle height correct when the dropper is fully extended.

    The OP is not getting what everyone else is saying: If your 150 dropper is too long fully inserted, replace it with a 125. Problem solved.

  21. #21
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    Some saddles have a lower profile and/or less rail height. This may allow you to effectively lower your saddle height without chaniging the seatpost. I managed to fit a 150mm dropper in my small frame this way. See if any of your riding mates have a saddle with lower "stack" and try it. It might solve your problem without needing a shorter dropper.

    Apart from saddle height, your issue could in fact be related to the change to new style geo. Steeper seat tube means the saddle is moved forward, closer to the vertical of the bottom bracket. This effectively rolls your body position forwards, with the bb as the axxis of the rotation (esp. if the stack is lower as well). Your torso is moved forward relative to the bb, hence the feeling of extra weight in hands. That's why modern geo helps with steep climbs - more weight on the front wheel. Moving your bars/stem up a spacer may help with that.

    It's something I also noticed when I moved from an older bike to my current one. Climbs were easier, far less chance of looping out when trying to spin up "walls", but less comfort on flat terrain due to increased weight in hands. As with everything else, it's a compromise. I rarely ride flat ground for long periods of time, so I don't mind.

  22. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by Xlr8n View Post
    Lot's of folks not getting what the OP is saying. With the 150 dropper, the saddle height is too high even with the dropper fully inserted. You want the saddle height correct when the dropper is fully extended.

    The OP is not getting what everyone else is saying: If your 150 dropper is too long fully inserted, replace it with a 125. Problem solved.
    That's the problem, OP never says that so you're assuming. He just says he wants to try a lower saddle height. We are trying to find out why, but he wont answer the simple question, so how can you help?
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  23. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by TwoTone View Post
    That's the problem, OP never says that so you're assuming. He just says he wants to try a lower saddle height. We are trying to find out why, but he wont answer the simple question, so how can you help?
    Dude I'm not dodging your questions, calm down. I'm not a professional bike fitter, so I can't confidently say if the saddle is the right height, sheesh. I suspect it is not, but I wanted to get some perspectives first and it's useful to know that this is one of the areas to consider.

    In terms of experience, I have about 5 years under my belt, but this is the first bike that I've had with modern geometry and the first time I've ever had wrist pain. But I get that there are a lot of variables to consider.

    The OP is not getting what everyone else is saying: If your 150 dropper is too long fully inserted, replace it with a 125. Problem solved.
    This is definitely the direction I'm leaning. The reason for the original post was to see what other measurements to consider before spending money on a new dropper.

    Anyway, I actually found a picture on my phone of the two bikes next to each other because I found the contrast so striking at the time:
    Bikes/measurements to consider if I want to take some weight off my wrists-euwyr0zh.jpg

  24. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by roma258 View Post
    Dude I'm not dodging your questions, calm down. I'm not a professional bike fitter, so I can't confidently say if the saddle is the right height, sheesh. I suspect it is not, but I wanted to get some perspectives first and it's useful to know that this is one of the areas to consider.

    In terms of experience, I have about 5 years under my belt, but this is the first bike that I've had with modern geometry and the first time I've ever had wrist pain. But I get that there are a lot of variables to consider.


    This is definitely the direction I'm leaning. The reason for the original post was to see what other measurements to consider before spending money on a new dropper.

    Anyway, I actually found a picture on my phone of the two bikes next to each other because I found the contrast so striking at the time:
    Click image for larger version. 

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    First, you're way too much into this crap- nothing to calm down over- it's a forum. I was just trying to get you to answer the question so we can help you. You never mentioned you were unsure- just that you wanted to lower the saddle. If you were doing that just to bring the bars up- bad idea.

    Here's a start-Saddle height - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6ouc9gKki60
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