Noob question on Seat height- Mtbr.com
Results 1 to 12 of 12
  1. #1
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Apr 2011
    Posts
    76

    Noob question on Seat height

    Hey again. Is the seat height typically the same deal for a mountain bike as a road bike ? leg almost straight at the bottom of the downstroke?. The seems good for flats and general riding power, but for downhills I would be flyin over the handlebars.

    Is it common for riders to adjust seats up and down say for a long endurance type ride/race?. if so what are the max ups and max down settings ?

    thanks

  2. #2
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Aug 2010
    Posts
    1,314
    IMHO, I like to keep the saddle lower for stability via a lower center of gravity on the long descents through real gnar - the kind of tech where a FS AM rig would be ideal. Otherwise, I keep it pretty high for rolling, fast 'n' flowy groomed XC trails where maximizing power via full extension on the downstroke is first and foremost in importance.

  3. #3
    Haro Sonix LT VL120
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    May 2006
    Posts
    812
    Pretty much you want the seat high enough so that you leg is extended out but not locked out. There should be a slight angle at the knee when the leg is at bottom dead center. With mountain biking you are off the seat alot and always shifting your weight. When going downhill you can stay over the seat with a little weight biased to the rear. On really steep downhills you end behind the seat with your chest almost parallel with the seat. Mountain bikes today are pretty forgiving with the suspension and relaxed headtube angles.

    Hope this helps

  4. #4
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Posts
    362
    Quote Originally Posted by barrelquest
    Hey again. Is the seat height typically the same deal for a mountain bike as a road bike ? leg almost straight at the bottom of the downstroke?. The seems good for flats and general riding power, but for downhills I would be flyin over the handlebars.

    Is it common for riders to adjust seats up and down say for a long endurance type ride/race?. if so what are the max ups and max down settings ?

    thanks
    Basically agreeing with roxnroots. For climbing and fast flat stuff, you want to be more or less in a road bike position. For descending you want the saddle to be as low as possible so that it's out of your way. For technical stuff you want to be somewhere in between.

    Many people just compromise and put the height somewhere in the middle, raising it or lowering it for long climbs or descents.

    Of course, if you can afford a nice remote-adjust seatpost and can live with the extra weight, it certainly doesn't hurt.

  5. #5
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Apr 2011
    Posts
    76
    Okay thanks yes this confirmed sort of what i was thinking. I guess the part I am still curious about is during a race you approach the steep hairy downhills. Is it common for riders to stop get off flip the quick release and drop the seat, and vice versa at the end of the steep section..barring the expensive auto adjust this doesnt seem reasonable. But I am talking Long endurance racing where a few seconds wont hurt. Is this common..

    (Also my thompson elite only uses an allen wrench so that sucks. hear they are coming out with a quick release. or maybe there is one already, not sure. a QR would definitely help.

  6. #6
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Apr 2011
    Posts
    76
    or yeah would they just leave it high and hang way off the back,, essentially riding on your stomach? probably this method..if so Im doomed.

  7. #7
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Aug 2010
    Posts
    1,314
    Like kestrel said, if I know that I'm riding a trail that transitions a lot I tend to split the difference and leave it set rougly halfway (but a little on the higher side) rather than dismount periodically. Yeah, you do lower your profile a little and shift your weight back a little on the rougher descents but ideally your rig also has a reasonably good fork and adequately-slack HTA if you're making a habit of hanging out on those kinds of trails anyway.

  8. #8
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Posts
    468
    Quote Originally Posted by barrelquest
    Okay thanks yes this confirmed sort of what i was thinking. I guess the part I am still curious about is during a race you approach the steep hairy downhills. Is it common for riders to stop get off flip the quick release and drop the seat, and vice versa at the end of the steep section..barring the expensive auto adjust this doesnt seem reasonable. But I am talking Long endurance racing where a few seconds wont hurt. Is this common..

    (Also my thompson elite only uses an allen wrench so that sucks. hear they are coming out with a quick release. or maybe there is one already, not sure. a QR would definitely help.
    More and more upper level bikes are coming out with on the fly adjustable seat posts such as the Crank Brothers Joplin [do a search to find a pic] specifically designed so the seat can be raised and dropped on demand depending on the terrain without stopping and getting off the bike.
    These typically give around 4 inches of height adjustment via a lever on the bars or a lever under the seat and are pneumatically operated a bit like a fork leg
    They are expensive - around $200 - $300 but are gining in popularity for the rider who has everything.

  9. #9
    T.W.O.
    Reputation: mimi1885's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2006
    Posts
    8,172
    Quote Originally Posted by barrelquest
    or yeah would they just leave it high and hang way off the back,, essentially riding on your stomach? probably this method..if so Im doomed.
    Ha ha ha, that's remind me of a ride we did a last year a friend rode down this steep somewhat rocky descend with his post up high and "rode on his stomach" mistimed the dip lost the grip but still clipped in got a mean uppercut from the saddle to the chin and the light just went out for a couple min I'd give anything to go back and put it on vid.

  10. #10
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
    Posts
    420
    Quote Originally Posted by barrelquest
    Okay thanks yes this confirmed sort of what i was thinking. I guess the part I am still curious about is during a race you approach the steep hairy downhills. Is it common for riders to stop get off flip the quick release and drop the seat, and vice versa at the end of the steep section..barring the expensive auto adjust this doesnt seem reasonable. But I am talking Long endurance racing where a few seconds wont hurt. Is this common..

    (Also my thompson elite only uses an allen wrench so that sucks. hear they are coming out with a quick release. or maybe there is one already, not sure. a QR would definitely help.
    In an xc race you won't find too much requiring you to be in a downhill position. At most you'll need to hang your butt over the back just a little.

  11. #11
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Posts
    36
    I like it when its at a 10-15 degree bend in your knee with you setting and your foot on the petal at the 6 o'clock position(closest to the ground)

  12. #12
    Fat-tired Roadie
    Reputation: AndrwSwitch's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Posts
    18,453
    Nobody stops in a XC race unless something's broken. In an endurance race - it varies. If you're just trying to finish it, do whatever. If you're being competitive, though, you probably don't want to stop and screw around with your bike every time the terrain changes. It's not that much each time, but it'll add up, and, for me, continuity is a big part of maintaining a good pace - I think if I stopped a lot, I'd have a hard time getting back up to a good speed each time.

    If you're having trouble with descending when your saddle is at its usual height, maybe your bars are too low? Or you have the saddle too high on both your road and your mountain bike - a lot of people do that...

    Also, descending on a mountain bike is not like descending on a road bike. You want your butt off the saddle, and you'll be better at it if you try to balance so your weight's over the pedals. This will make you a better descender on the road, too, but my experience of descending on the road is that it's usually smoother and not as steep, so more forgiving of having some weight in the handle bars.
    "Don't buy upgrades; ride up grades." -Eddy Merckx

Members who have read this thread: 0

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •  

THE SITE

ABOUT MTBR

VISIT US AT

© Copyright 2019 VerticalScope Inc. All rights reserved.