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How picky should I be(6 posts)

How picky should I beHBPat
Jun 19, 2002 12:01 PM
I know that I want a 56cm seattube and a 57cm top tube. I ordered a bike that is 56/56 and figured I could live with that.

The more I though about it I decided that I really wanted a 57cm top tube. So I ordered a frame (cost me another $1200) that is a 56 with a 56.5. I figured that is close enough but I would hate to build it up only to be stuck with two complete bikes that I don't feel fit me.

So I'm wondering if I should ditch the bike and frame and just search harder, or would I really notice the difference between 56.5 and 57? How picky can I reasonably be?
It is your money, be as picky as you want to be.refusenick
Jun 19, 2002 12:07 PM
Strictly IMO, you'll never feel the differenceSilverback
Jun 19, 2002 12:14 PM
half a centimeter is, what, 1/5 inch or so? You may be more sensitive than I am, but I don't think it would make much difference to me. My height varies that much between morning and evening.
re: How picky should I bemerckx56
Jun 19, 2002 12:15 PM
the 5 millimeters can be made up with the correct stem and handlebar combination. possibly with just the bars. get a bar with a bit longer reach, like a deda newton and the problem is solved. i've got a merckx with a 56 top and a 125 stem and a look with a 56.5 top and a 120. the frame is important in the final fit equation, but the last few fit intricacies can be solved in the bar/stem setup.
did you consider seat tube angle??C-40
Jun 19, 2002 1:42 PM
If you din't figure the seat tube angle into the equation, you may not have what you think you have. TT length is meaningless without the STA. If you look at two frames with different STA, you must correct for the difference in "effective" TT length. In this frame size, add 1.2cm per degree to the TT length of the frame with the steeper STA to get an accurate comparison.

If you KNOW you need a 57cm TT, I assume that this also means for use with your favorite stem length (110 or 120?).

The only compromise will be with stem length. You'll quickly adapt to whichever is needed.
re: How picky should I betarwheel
Jun 20, 2002 5:16 AM
C-40 is correct about the seat tube angle. A bike with a steeper seat tube angle (eg, 74) will fit "longer" than one with a slacker seat angle (eg, 73), given the same top tube length.

Also, I wouldn't downplay the 1 cm difference in top tube length, all else being equal (eg, same seat tube angle). I have an older bike with an effective top tube length about 1 cm longer than my newer bike. After riding the bike with the shorter top tube, I find it much more comfortable than my older bike. I have since installed a shorter stem on the older bike to compensate, but it handles twitchier and still doesn't fit as well. If you know what size fits you best, I would try to match it as closely as possible. Some people don't seem to be bothered by such differences, however, and you might be one of them.