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  1. #1
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    Giant's size chart accuracy?

    hello to all. I new to the scene and wanted some input from real world giant riders to help me choose the right size for me.

    I placed an order for a new 2018 trance 2 at my local bike shop yesterday , im right about 5'6 (175lbs) , 30 inseam ,Giants website puts me on a small size bike (5'5-5'8), i test rode a small(2018) and a medium(2017), the small felt really small as if the handle bars were too close to my legs and i was seating at an almost upright position, and the medium felt closer to what i ride currently. The guys at the bike shop said i should get a medium to have more cockpit room, now these guys dont seem very professional so it left me feeling pretty unsure of my decision. I ride a 2006(i think) stumpjumper which i recently found out its a large frame.


    Now should i ignore the guys at the shop and go by giants size chart and order a small and get used to it? afterall im right in the middle of the sizing recommendation for a small frame. im assuming the small trance felt so small because this whole time ive been riding a large?

    Or should i stick with the medium frame?

    what is your experience with giants sizing recommendation and actual fit on the bike?

    i do own a size small giant road bike that seems to fit well.

  2. #2
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    Go a medium & if it's a little long in the cockpit, run a shorter stem ^^

    'We'll all make it to the top... Some of us, might not make it to the bottom'
    "Mountain biking: the under-rated and drug-free antidepressant"

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by targnik View Post
    Go a medium & if it's a little long in the cockpit, run a shorter stem ^^

    'We'll all make it to the top... Some of us, might not make it to the bottom'
    The 2018 medium already comes with a 30mm stem. The medium i test rode was a 2017 with 60mm stem.

  4. #4
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    My wife is 5'6" & she happily rides my size L, 2017 Giant Reign 2 (I suspect Reigns reach is greater than Trance's) & my Nukeproof 290...

    Get the M... Last thing you want is to be cramped up on an S ;-)

    'We'll all make it to the top... Some of us, might not make it to the bottom'
    "Mountain biking: the under-rated and drug-free antidepressant"

  5. #5
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    I'm 5'5" and I don't fit on a medium anything. I would go on a longer test ride with both sizes again.

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    My buddy, who I believe has a 30" inseam, was in between a small and a medium. He went with the medium and the bike fits him well. The one area of concern was the seat height. The seat is near its lowest position. If he lowers it even another 1/8" of an inch the dropper post stops working. Sure you can easily swap stems and other items, but a new dropper post would be a bit more expensive. He is on a 17 trance Adv. 2

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by huitzi View Post
    im assuming the small trance felt so small because this whole time ive been riding a large?
    probably. It all comes down to personal preference and what you're customed too. Sometimes even switching to the "right size" is hard, for the same reason it took wider handlebars many years to be finally accepted by the majority of riders.

    A too small bike is worse than a too large bike, the small bike will make you feel cramped which is probably the worst feeling ever whereas the too large will ride like a bus, feeling less lively and awkward to handle. It's like shoes: The small shoe is painful to wear over long distance whereas the too large shoe can be made fit with thicker socks but it's not an ideal solution either.

    So going large and putting a shorter stem on isn't automatically the best solution. A frame size gives you a certain window of adjustment range and you need to play along with all the parameters before making final judgement. Just by the numbers the M Trance is indeed too big for you but that doesn't mean you won't like it since you're used to bigger frames in the first place and there are other people of your size on a Trance M as we speak (majority on S though)

    I'm 5'11" with 34" inseam and nearly became a victim to wrong sizing recommendations myself, the "old' Trance was initially recommended to me in size M by Giant's own people which prooved to be too small by a wide margin whereas next year the Reign was given me in L size, only after riding the M size right afterwards I immediately noticed how much better (more lively) it felt. The easiest way to spot a too small frame is when riding the bike uphill, that way I can quickly eliminate a too small testbike and get the right size before wasting further time with.

    When buying a Kona Rove Gravelbike in 2016 I was unsure if ML or L sizing is the way to go so I opened a thread. Funnily enough a Kona dealer with my body size chimed in and was 100% sure that L is the correct size which in the end proved to be just plain wrong. (he later deleted his posts). I was already on the verge of ordering the L but after testriding a similar sized bike eventually withdrew and ordered the smaller ML! So be careful when taking blind advice from anyone!

    Btw, there's also a third possible outcome: Neither size fits. It happened to me when I was testriding the new gen 2017 Trance in late 2016, I'm currently on the Generation 2014-2016 model in size L but couldn't get comfortable on either size M or L of the 2017 model since the new sizing scheme didn't seem to suit my body proportions. (see my remarks with side to side pictures in the official TRANCE thread)

    Quote Originally Posted by targnik View Post
    My wife is 5'6" & she happily rides my size L, 2017 Giant Reign 2
    yeah sure, you gotta be kidding?

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by Steel Calf View Post
    probably. It all comes down to personal preference and what you're customed too. Sometimes even switching to the "right size" is hard, for the same reason it took wider handlebars many years to be finally accepted by the majority of riders.

    A too small bike is worse than a too large bike, the small bike will make you feel cramped which is probably the worst feeling ever whereas the too large will ride like a bus, feeling less lively and awkward to handle. It's like shoes: The small shoe is painful to wear over long distance whereas the too large shoe can be made fit with thicker socks but it's not an ideal solution either.

    So going large and putting a shorter stem on isn't automatically the best solution. A frame size gives you a certain window of adjustment range and you need to play along with all the parameters before making final judgement. Just by the numbers the M Trance is indeed too big for you but that doesn't mean you won't like it since you're used to bigger frames in the first place and there are other people of your size on a Trance M as we speak (majority on S though)

    I'm 5'11" with 34" inseam and nearly became a victim to wrong sizing recommendations myself, the "old' Trance was initially recommended to me in size M by Giant's own people which prooved to be too small by a wide margin whereas next year the Reign was given me in L size, only after riding the M size right afterwards I immediately noticed how much better (more lively) it felt. The easiest way to spot a too small frame is when riding the bike uphill, that way I can quickly eliminate a too small testbike and get the right size before wasting further time with.

    When buying a Kona Rove Gravelbike in 2016 I was unsure if ML or L sizing is the way to go so I opened a thread. Funnily enough a Kona dealer with my body size chimed in and was 100% sure that L is the correct size which in the end proved to be just plain wrong. (he later deleted his posts). I was already on the verge of ordering the L but after testriding a similar sized bike eventually withdrew and ordered the smaller ML! So be careful when taking blind advice from anyone!

    Btw, there's also a third possible outcome: Neither size fits. It happened to me when I was testriding the new gen 2017 Trance in late 2016, I'm currently on the Generation 2014-2016 model in size L but couldn't get comfortable on either size M or L of the 2017 model since the new sizing scheme didn't seem to suit my body proportions. (see my remarks with side to side pictures in the official TRANCE thread)



    yeah sure, you gotta be kidding?

    great info thanks.

    say how close should the handle bars be to my knees? and what seating position should i be on to ride confortably? the small felt like i was almost upright which felt wierd since ive never really ridden anything in that position but it may be the correct position to ride.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by huitzi View Post
    great info thanks.

    say how close should the handle bars be to my knees? and what seating position should i be on to ride confortably? the small felt like i was almost upright which felt wierd since ive never really ridden anything in that position but it may be the correct position to ride.
    I remember when I bought my first full suspension bike after a long year break and having ridden only hardtails before I instinctively knew that I couldn't trust my intuition since my "calibration" was still stuck on late 90s hardtail geometries.

    So I tried to clinge on hard numbers and rule of thumb but that didn't work that well either, I eventually rented out my 3 favourite bikes for testriding in the woods which helped me to perceive geometry and riding differences that wouldn't show up in the parking lot test before. Remember you're not stuck with a bike purchase forever, it's not marriage, you can still switch to something new and dump the old one without needing a lawyer. (I bought a new bike only 3 years later which again got replaced after just 2 years)

    If you don't have a testing opportunity I'd rather go with the majority of riders choice which means size S for you.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by Steel Calf View Post
    I remember when I bought my first full suspension bike after a long year break and having ridden only hardtails before I instinctively knew that I couldn't trust my intuition since my "calibration" was still stuck on late 90s hardtail geometries.

    So I tried to clinge on hard numbers and rule of thumb but that didn't work that well either, I eventually rented out my 3 favourite bikes for testriding in the woods which helped me to perceive geometry and riding differences that wouldn't show up in the parking lot test before. Remember you're not stuck with a bike purchase forever, it's not marriage, you can still switch to something new and dump the old one without needing a lawyer. (I bought a new bike only 3 years later which again got replaced after just 2 years)

    If you don't have a testing opportunity I'd rather go with the majority of riders choice which means size S for you.
    I agree, but definatly want to make the right choice. Bike is almost $3000otd and i never not once in my life thought i would be spending that much on a bycicle. Im leaning a bit more towards a medium right now since i believe itll be easier to put up with if its isnt the right size. I already ride a large so im assuming the medium cant be worse. Its the small its too small i feel lile i would just hate it . Also resale prices are horrible i wouldnt want to take a loss right away.

    Also forgot to mention im somewhat muscular from years of weight training. So that may be why i felt the small too small and the guys at the bike shop recomended the medium.

  11. #11
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    where do you live? I'm selling my 2017 Giant Trance 2, same frame as the 2018 and i've made the tires tubless already and put on a Haven stem and Haven Carbon Bars. It might just be setup. I'm 5' 4" and felt a little cramped but realized my seat was to far forward, once I adjusted the seat the bike fit me perfectly.

    Here's a picture i have on pinkbike. The picture is with the original giant stem and bars but i'm fine with selling with the carbon on. Asking 2k.

    https://www.pinkbike.com/photo/15645950/

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by Naolin View Post
    where do you live? I'm selling my 2017 Giant Trance 2, same frame as the 2018 and i've made the tires tubless already and put on a Haven stem and Haven Carbon Bars. It might just be setup. I'm 5' 4" and felt a little cramped but realized my seat was to far forward, once I adjusted the seat the bike fit me perfectly.

    Here's a picture i have on pinkbike. The picture is with the original giant stem and bars but i'm fine with selling with the carbon on. Asking 2k.

    https://www.pinkbike.com/photo/15645950/
    thank you but i really want the 46t cassete and 30t chainring since im on the heavy side and all trails around me have lots of climbs

  13. #13
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    Don't rely too much on sizing labels, you cannot compare a 2018 size S bike with a 12 year old size L bike to begin with, I used to sit far more streched out on my old hardtail but couldn't ride like that on my full suspension bike

    It would be very useful to
    1) ascertain the size of your 2006 stumpjumper (that you recently "found out its a size L" doesn't sound very convincing to me)
    2) show a side picture of your riding position
    3) measure G. Saddle height
    4) measure C. Saddle tip to bar

    Since you have access to the Trance in both sizes you could now equally measure 4) and show a picture of your riding position on each size (after setting both up with exact same saddle height and effective seat angle)


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    Quote Originally Posted by Steel Calf View Post
    Don't rely too much on sizing labels, you cannot compare a 2018 size S bike with a 12 year old size L bike to begin with, I used to sit far more streched out on my old hardtail but couldn't ride like that on my full suspension bike

    It would be very useful to
    1) ascertain the size of your 2006 stumpjumper (that you recently "found out its a size L" doesn't sound very convincing to me)
    2) show a side picture of your riding position
    3) measure G. Saddle height
    4) measure C. Saddle tip to bar

    Since you have access to the Trance in both sizes you could now equally measure 4) and show a picture of your riding position on each size (after setting both up with exact same saddle height and effective seat angle)

    im 99% sure my stumpjumper is a Large. i measure the wheelbase and it only matched the large specification for the 2006-2007 model.

    Giant's size chart accuracy?-img_6238.jpg
    Giant's size chart accuracy?-img_6240.jpg
    Giant's size chart accuracy?-img_6239.jpg

    saddle height is 25.5 inches and saddle tip to bar is 19 inches right at the edge of the bar , 60mm stem.

    thanks for all the help btw.

  15. #15
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    I think the bike looks really good on you, why would you want a new one?

    judging by the pictures I'd also favour the Trance in medium size

    + sizing chart from Giant UK:



    Yes it basically recommends you the S size but take a look at the height/inseam segmentation and ask yourself: Would you rather like to ride a bike which also fits a 5'3" person or a bike of a 5'7" person?

    I just saw that this chart also contradicts the sizing recommendations from the US site which is a bit odd
    https://www.giant-bicycles.com/us/trance-2

    Here was the situation in 2014:


    Going strictly by this chart I was right on the edge between M and L size but M was definitely too small

    In your case you're pretty close to the edge between S and M so based on my own experience going M would be my recommendation

  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by huitzi View Post
    thank you but i really want the 46t cassete and 30t chainring since im on the heavy side and all trails around me have lots of climbs
    Considering you can get a 30T for about 30 bucks, that 1 thousand dollars extra for 1 slightly higher gear Anyways like others have said I would go for another test ride and make sure its not just bike setup and if its not just go with the one that feels right.

  17. #17
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    I agree with the others, do not get caught up in charts, and if you are to err on the side of caution, go slightly bigger. But I would also say you really should ride the exact bike you are intending to buy, before buying.

    The other thing I will say is I'm not sure where you are, but Giant is the biggest bike mfr in the world, and there are shops all over the place. You said you didn't feel comfortable with the guys in your shop, can you find another one? Try to find one with a reputable fit expert. There's one near me (a couple, really) that I really trust. A reputable shop will also give you a basic fit for free when you buy a new bike from them. Having a fit wizard help with getting you on the right bike, and setting it up right, can make a huge difference.

    Make sure when you say "inseam" you are talking about your body inseam, not your pant size inseam. They are not one and the same. Make sure you are comparing what spec you are reading, to the correct inseam. This can be googled, and it's an easy test.

    Finally, I'm 5'11" according to Giant's website I need a M/L on a road bike. I test rode a couple of those, even with the fit guy helping with stems, saddle, etc. He put me on a L, which is for riders about 2" taller than me, it fit a lot better, but wasn't quite right. He sized me up, started asking some questions, had me relax on the bike, adjust hand positions, looked closely at me and after another measurement, it turns out my reach is 6'1", but my legs aren't especially long. After some minor adjustments with the saddle and bars, taking the stem from 100 to 90, the L fit perfect. Hopefully this tale explains how a rider's height, and "inseam" aren't the only way to measure for a bike size, but only a starting guide.

    If you prefer the Giant over your old Stumpy, don't be shy about buying the Giant. It's always fun to get a new bike.

  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by huitzi View Post
    The 2018 medium already comes with a 30mm stem. The medium i test rode was a 2017 with 60mm stem.
    The Trance 2 medium and small come with a 50mm stem. If you felt more comfortable on the medium go that route. I'd much rather have a bike a bit too long than too small.

  19. #19
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    Want to thank everyone for your input. Went back today and rode both m and s and the small still felt too small. I went this the medium after all. Cant wait to take it out this weekend. Rode it around the block for a bit since its raining here in california, suspension feels a bit soft but i guess it take a few uses to fine tune to my liking. Thanks for all the input once again

  20. #20
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    Congrats! Awesome bike.

  21. #21
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    Charts are generally incorrect for me. Although I generally ride a S. I fit much better on a M 2018 Giant XTC!?....the S was like an effective XS to me.

    Another important point is the proportion of your torso length to height. If varies from the average, you really need to test in the flesh, the charts will not be useful.

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    I also look for a Trance, but the adv. 1, same geometry, I'm 5'7". One thing bug me, the dropper post is 125mm on the medium? If so did you have some room for adjustment?

  23. #23
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    A bit late now, but probably the easiest way to work the size of the Stumpy is to measure the head-tube length.
    Small 100mm
    Medium 110mm
    Large 120mm
    X Large 150mm

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