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Women's bike??(13 posts)

Women's bike??liebejungen
Aug 29, 2002 7:44 PM
I am thinking of buying a bike for my wife this weekend. She isn't going to be real into it, but she wants something so she can ride with me some of the time. Maybe she will catch the bug.

Anyway, my question is, is there a good reason i should buy her a women's frame bike? Or shoudl i buy her a regular mans frame in her size so that bike will be stiffer...etc.

I can't see any reason why a women's bike would be better... All good advice appreciated.

ps.. we are talking comfort/hybrid bike here... probably Trek7200...
re: Women's bike??jtolleson
Aug 29, 2002 8:30 PM
Whether a woman needs a "women's frame" is much more involved with her size than any philosophical reason. In the hybrid market, I'll GENERALLY say "no." WSD has a lot more to do with reach (both tt length and bar size) than anything else, and that is much less an issue.

Though even shopping hybrid, you might want to look at bikes that are lighter with 700cc wheels, yet straight bars. The Specialized Sirrus seems like a decent alternative. If you want her to enjoy riding with you, don't make her have to work twice as hard as you do.\

Have fun!
Step-through FramesMe Dot Org
Aug 29, 2002 8:43 PM
I'm assuming when you talk about "women's frames" you are talking about "step-through" frames, that were originally designed to accomodate women riding with skirts.

While some women still prefer this design, the vast majority of women riders ride what you consider a "man's frame", where the top tube runs straight from the head tube to the top of the seat tube.

I think that you would find that the straight top tube design is probably more torsionally rigid than a step-through frame.

Don't be confused when you hear the term "Women's Specific Design", sometimes abbreviated WSD. Women generally have longer legs and shorter torsos than men, and some bicycle manufacturers (Trek and Terry, for example) design a "man's" frame for a women's proportions.
Step-through Framesliebejungen
Aug 30, 2002 5:18 AM
Yes, that is what i am refering to. I would like her to not have the step through frame if possible. I will just have to see what fits her i guess.

Otherwise, i realise that the proporsions are different.

thanks for the help!
Whoops, missed that entirely!jtolleson
Aug 30, 2002 7:11 AM
Wasn't even thinking of those. They are really rare any more.
Ask Lazywriter...empacher6seat
Aug 29, 2002 11:32 PM
I believe that's his current ride.
Women's bike?? Yes!rengaracchi
Aug 29, 2002 11:43 PM
I think there are many reasons why you need to consider getting a WSD bike for your wife. For one thing, if fit is the most important issue when it comes to choose a bike, it is true for anyone including women. As someone mentioned above, women tend to have longer legs and shorter torso than men do, and bike should reflect this difference. A right frame would make cycling more enjoyable and fun, and this would increase the chances that she might "catch the bug".

I bought my girlfriend a bike in hoping that she someday find it fun. I had to go custom since no manufacture, even Terry and Giant, made a frame of her size. BUT, the end result was great. Although this was the first time for her to ride a pure road bike, she found it extremely comfortable right from the beginning. And she can go FAST if she wants to. Sure, she hates hills, but it comes much later. :-)

A custom bike is not necessarily expensive. Check GVH Bicycles ( You can order a Land Shark with full Ultegra set for $2,000. You can ask your wife's name painted on the frame (which I did). You can get a beautifully painted solid performance bike that I'm sure your wife appreciates a lot. And, finally and most importantly, a bike like this tells your wife how much you care.... Good luck!!
re: Women's bike??Barton
Aug 30, 2002 4:42 AM
Some companies make road frames for women.

Two I can think of are Bianchi (Giro per Donna) and Fuji.

Check them out.
Age specific.Spoke Wrench
Aug 30, 2002 5:34 AM
My experience has been that nearly all younger women, say under 40, prefer the diamond style frame today. A much higher percentage of older women still think that they need a "girl's" bike. For practical purposes, short of attack mode, I can't see any difference in performance. For whatever it's worth, I've never seen a broken step-through bike frame.

I just assembled a bunch of Giant Cypress DX bikes this week, and I was favorably impressed. They looked pretty good, were reasonably lightweight and had some nice touches like double butted spokes that you usually don't see on hybred bikes. They went together real fast which, to me, is an indication of good quality.

If you are sincerely interested in riding with your wife, the word is TANDEM. It's pretty hard for two bike riders who have different physical abilities to ride single bikes together. No matter how good your intentions, you will eventually find yourself alone at the top of a hill with your wife nowhere in sight. A tandem solves that problem. Bring lots of money.
re: Women's bike??sweetbuns
Aug 30, 2002 6:09 AM
When I shopped for a new road bike last summer, the only bikes I could choose from were the WSD or a child's bike. I don't know how tall your wife is, but I am only 5'2 and it was really tough to find bikes that fit my height. I had to go to a bunch of different bike stores all over the chicago and suburbs. I purchased my bike in mid-August, just a warning, most WSD was already sold out at that time. I called the different bike companies like C'dale, Trek, and Terry to direct me to the stores that may have purchased bikes in my size for their stock. I tried a Giant OCR or TCR (I can't remember), not Women's, it felt comfortable but I was not sitting in it correctly.

I know you are looking for a hybrid or a comfort for your wife, from my experiences, comfort bikes are not always more comfortable. Recumbents are probably the most comfortable bikes out there. Please make sure you guys go shopping together and don't be too pushy on the bike and componentry. When my BF shopped for a bike, I was pushing him maybe too much. When he finally bought a bike, he went on his own to the store. Now the bike sits and collects dust. Oh well, live and learn!
5'2" huh,Spoke Wrench
Aug 30, 2002 7:18 AM
I have a NOS Terry road bike in my basement that I'd let go for a real low price. I suspect that it would probably fit you perfectly.
5'2" huh,sweetbuns
Aug 30, 2002 7:26 AM
How much? Hehehe, this is bad!

Email me if you want to keep talking, ssuhu AT hotmail DOT com. I also have a few female friends that are my height, I can help you unload the bike.

Thanks SW!
re: Women's bike??aliensporebomb
Aug 30, 2002 11:09 AM
I did this several years ago. We bought her a comfort type bike and while she initially liked it, it was essentially very uncomfortable on her girly bits. She tried different seats, nothing was working. The bike sat on the basement looking showroom new, still with the little rubber hairs on the tires.

I brought her to the LBS this spring and she tried out a recumbent because it looked "fun". We had to buy it because she wouldn't get off of it! She's really into it

We sold her old bike for nearly what we paid for it and
used the proceeds to get me a new road bike.

So, whatever you do - make sure you get something she likes
and maybe have her try something like that. Good luck.