RoadBikeReview.com's Forum Archives - Cyclo-Cross


Archive Home >> Cyclo-Cross(1 2 3 )


Clydesdale and Cyclo-Cross?(17 posts)

Clydesdale and Cyclo-Cross?JVC
Dec 5, 2002 10:43 PM
Hi all. I have been reading for a while and have become inspired to post for the first time. I am a long time MTB'er and have recently found myself thinking CX is where I'd like to head.

Here is the problem: I'm 6'9" 300lbs. I'm very athletic; in fact I was a baseball player for most of my life, so I not worried about conditioning per-say. However, just looking at those thin tubes found on most road and CX frames causes me to fear for my life! (Ok not really, but you get the point).

So my question is as follows; as someone interested in the sport, who has previous MTBing experience and who is as big as I, how would you recommend I get started?

Money is a concern, but I think I probably am serious enough about this to sell my Ti MTB and go with something a bit more CX worthy.

Any and all advice is greatly appreciated, especially from those around my size. Thank you all for reading!
I like the SurlyAlpedhuez55
Dec 6, 2002 8:59 AM
My Surly holds up well under my 300+ lb body. It is plenty stiff in the bottom bracket. I think it would be an option for you. You would not have to sell your Ti MTB to get one either. Buy the frame and have a good set of 36 hole wheels built up for you though. I am not crazy about the specs on the bike.

Mike Y.
I love mine, but...Stampertje
Dec 10, 2002 2:30 AM
...at 6'4" I already have a riser stem and all the spacers I could find on the 60cm frame. That does give me a very shallow drop to the bars, though, so if you're willing to go 3-4 inches from the top of the saddle to the top of the bar you may be fine.

I built it up myself; I agree, the standard spec is not spectacular. For wheel strength, you could even go 135 in the rear. I weigh less than 200 pounds but I have ridden some very rooty trails at speed and my wheels have held up fine (105/OP 36 3x)
re: Clydesdale and Cyclo-Cross?TWD
Dec 6, 2002 10:01 AM
Not all cx frames have really skinny tubes. The frame on my '02 Bianchi Axis seems as stiff and stout as any of the mtb frames that I've ridden over the years.

If money were no object, going custom would be the best route for a guy your size.

At 6'9'' I'd guess you are going to have some troubles finding an off the shelf CX frame to fit you well.

A good framebuilder should work with you to choose the best geometry as well as a tubeset that can better handle your weight. If he/she specs the same tubeset as they would for a 150lb rider, you might want to look elsewhere.

I'm sure there are a few folks on this board that can give you a better recommendation on custom builders than I can, but there are some options that are more reasonable cost wise if especially if you pick the components wisely. Try searching through the archives on this board, I know people have asked about reasonably priced builders a few times.

You can also, grab parts from your parts bin, or scalp them off an old MTB if you want to save cash.

If you go that route and have questions on compatability between road and mountain parts, this is the best place to ask.

Good Luck
re: Clydesdale and Cyclo-Cross?helton
Dec 6, 2002 10:43 AM
Know what you are going through, I am 6'6" and 320 lbs. I have been riding a cannondale mountain bike for years and have recently been looking at cross bikes. The guys at the shop I deal with tell me to stick with a mountain bike because the 26" wheels are alot stronger. If you come up with a bike that works good for you post it here if you don't care. It may give me a option..Thanks, Steve.
700 C wheels can be strong enoughAlpedhuez55
Dec 6, 2002 11:35 AM
Speaking from experience, I think that shop is wrong. I have plenty of 700 C wheels that have stayed true under my 330 pounds. THey are all hand built. I have 32 hole Open Pros/Ultegras, 36 hole Mavic MA3/105, 36 hole Mavic T520/105 & 36 hole Sun CR-18/Fixed Gear Suzue Hubs that all work great. These were all built by local shops for me and have held up well. I never thought the 32 hole rims would hold up on my road bike but they do. A properly laced 700CM wheel will hold up for you. Remember they use these wheels on many tandems.

Just use a little common sense. If you are riding over a pot hole or small dropoff float over the saddle. If you are going to bunny hop over logs then you may want to stick with MTB wheels. I have had sets of 26" machine built wheels that came with bikes that needed to be retensioned after every few rides. You just need to have a wheel that is well made.

I would suggest you try to find out who the best builder is in your area and have them build the wheels for you. If that shop is telling you to go with a Mountain bike, I would guess they do not have much confidence in their wheel builders.

Mike Y.
and I thought I was 'big'atpjunkie
Dec 6, 2002 12:40 PM
Hell at 6"5" 230 I'm a midget. Let's start a Clydesdale Cross campaign! Run Velocity deep vees 32 or 36 laced 3x, I have both a Specialized M4 and a Ridley cross bikes (Both Y2K) and they put up with me quite fine. The Specialized almost feels like steel under my size. Either go custom or find a big frame. The 60cm SWorks feels like a 62+ road frame
and I thought I was 'big'atpjunkie
Dec 6, 2002 12:49 PM
also there was a guy last week at the Cal States (riding a Sycip or a Steelman...Sycip I think) who was easily 300 so it can be done
re: Clydesdale and Cyclo-Cross?morati
Dec 6, 2002 3:59 PM
If you think you're going to be involved in the sport for awhile then I would have to say that considering your size you should probably be looking at going full custom such as Seven (www.sevencycles.com) or maybe a Steelman. Both company's will take care of you. Good Luck.
re: customatpjunkie
Dec 6, 2002 6:01 PM
can be a good choice but also please point out that this is at considerable cost. Two great companies (Seven, Steelman also add Kelly) but remember entry level frames from these companies are in the 900's (Steelman/Kelly) to 1400's (Seven). As a Clydesdale (and a thrifty shopper) I've bought and/or built up 2 race worthy (and raced) cx bikes for well under 2 grand using the classifieds /ebay/bike swaps etc... It can be done on an entry level (or just tight) budget you just have to be diligent. If you can afford custom, do so, it's good to support the boutique builders of America (and Canada), but also note as a Clydesdale you are more likely to do damage to your rig and a back-up come race day can be quite advantageous.Good Luck
re: customJVC
Dec 6, 2002 6:42 PM
I actually love doing eBay thing. Part of the fun I feel is finding that great buy and building a bike out of it.

Can you recommend a name or two to search for on eBay (frame specifically)? Perhaps some keywords? I just want to make sure I'm looking for the right thing.
re: shoppingatpjunkie
Dec 6, 2002 7:01 PM
get into ebay cycling list and do a search under cyclocross. All kinds of stuff will come up. There's a 60cm Cannondale right now. Do you ride road? Do you know your road size? If not what is your inseam? long legged, long bodied? also check the classifieds here in rbr
re: shoppingatpjunkie
Dec 6, 2002 7:06 PM
there's a 61 cm Trek and most of all a 61cm Empella (if this fits get it!!!!) in the classifieds here (I took a look for ya) empellas are swank Belgian race Bikes. about as good as it gets. a 61cm cx bike is going to fit like a 63-64 roadie. That would work for a fairly tall person. I don't know about 6'9", matters your inseam. I'm 6'4"-6-5" with a 35" inseam and ride a 61cm road bike and 57-59 cm crossers. Hope this helps
re: shoppingJVC
Dec 6, 2002 7:18 PM
I sent the seller an email. Typically (from a MTB) I like a standover of around 33-34" and a effective TT of around 25-26" Thanks for looking for me!

FYI my inseam is about 35" I've got long arms an a long torso.

I hope the seller responds!
re: shoppingatpjunkie
Dec 9, 2002 7:08 PM
60-61 should be fine. especially in an empella. you will need a 110-120 stem and 48 bars (at least) let us know how it goes
re: shoppingmsmootsiemartin
Dec 7, 2002 8:04 AM
also search under cyclo cross (sometimes people spell it with a space between the words).
re: Clydesdale and Cyclo-Cross?heldveld
Dec 9, 2002 9:37 AM
I'm 6'6" an just starting riding a 63st/61tt Empella which fits great. As far as I know it's the largest stock cross frame available. I only weight 205lbs so our weight is not really comparable. I think you will have to go custom to get the right fit.

Seven makes a cross frame and they will spec tubes to perform according to your style and body weight. Not cheap but a steel frame is not outrageous compared to some bikes.

I've done a cross race on my MTB before not bad it depends on the course.