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Compact Frame Sizing Problem???(13 posts)

Compact Frame Sizing Problem???jschwarz
Jun 23, 2003 7:39 AM
I am almost 5'10" and in the past had been fitted for a 54cm size bike. I ended up ordering a bike online that was a 54cm bike. It ends up that due to the compact design of the bike I should have ordered their 50cm sized bike (according to the mfg. website). I can still stand over the bike but not with much clearance. I have ridden the bike 3 times for 10 mile rides and other than the seat I am not uncomfortable at all. If I wouldn't have stumbled across the fact that I should have ordered the 50cm bike I would have never known. I wasn't planning on returning the bike, but should I consider it now? My concern is that I might have comfort problems down the road that I'm not seeing now. Does that happen?
exactly why not to buy on-lineclimbo
Jun 23, 2003 8:07 AM
unless you are 100% sure of what you are getting in to. Take it back, it'll never work for you if it is 4cm too big for you. What bike?, give us the specs or the website details. If you can't stand over a compact frame with any clearance it sounds way too big for you.
exactly why not to buy on-linejschwarz
Jun 23, 2003 8:34 AM
The bike is a Tommaso Capri ( ). The confusion was caused becasue orignially I was going to order the 2002 model which was not compact and then I changed to the 2003 model which has a compact frame.

SPECS For 54cm Compact
Top Tube Length 57.2 cm
Wheelbase 98.8 cm
Standover Height 32.25"
Head Tube Length 18 cm

SPECS For 50cm Compact
Top Tube Length 54.5 cm
Wheelbase 97.8 cm
Standover Height 30.2"
Head Tube Length 14 cm

Other than standover the biggest difference is the head tube length which is only 3cm (1.18"). Is that going to make that much of a difference?
TT length !!climbo
Jun 23, 2003 8:55 AM
The 54cm frame has a top tube over an inch longer, that's the biggest issue. Also, the HT size may make a difference because you may not be able to get the bars in the right position if you like them lower down. The standover would also be a factor but not the biggest problem.

Unless you like the extra length in the TT, I would say you'd be better off getting the smaller frame, one with the correct TT length for you.

Of course, I have no idea if you have long arms or torso and maybe you do fit the 54 but generally it sounds too big for you if you had previously been fitted for a "standard" 54cm bike.
neither size is correct....C-40
Jun 23, 2003 6:32 PM
Gee, you have know how to read a geometry chart before buying bikes by mail order.

The 52cm is most likely the correct size. The 54 has a TT that is definitely too long and the head tube is too tall.

The 50cm head tube is darn short.

The 52cm should be just right.
neither size is correct....jschwarz
Jun 24, 2003 5:46 AM
It wasn't that I didn't know how to read it.
1. The 54cm bike was not supposed to be a compact frame. That was the wrong size because of miscommunication.
2. The 50cm was a quick reference taken from their info. I hadn't spent anytime looking into it.
3. I am getting the orginal bike that I was measured for at 54cm, which is the 2002 model that has a standard frame.
Actual 54cm or virtual 54 cm ????Scot_Gore
Jun 23, 2003 8:22 AM
Are you confusing terminology often used on compact bikes.

The virtual size is a measurement to the point where the top tube would be if it was not a compact.

The actual size is the measurement done to where the sloping top tubes actually comes in.

54cm virtual and 50cm actual are quite probably the same bike.

Actual 54cm or virtual 54 cm ????jschwarz
Jun 23, 2003 8:39 AM
I don't think I'm confusing terminology. They say on their site if you normally would ride a 54cm bike then you should order the 50cm compact one.
Hard to judge the words out of context.Scot_Gore
Jun 23, 2003 9:11 AM
If their recommendation was that you should buy a 50cm actual to achieve 54cm virtual fit dynamics, sounds exactly right to me.

I went to the Specialized site because it's what I know the best. The 54cm virual size is indeed a 50cm actual size.

If you purchased the 54cm actual size in Specialized's line you'd be riding a 58cm virtual sized bike. If that's what you did, I feel it will be hard to achieve fit and comfort on this large a frame if you normally ride a 54.

What are the rule of thumb indicators:
1) How streched out do you feel in the drops ?
a)Elbows nearly fully extended
b) Elbows slightly bent
c) Elbows at nearly 90 degrees

2) While riding on the hoods what's the sight line to your front hub.
A) In front of the headtube
B) Hidden by the headtube
c) Behind the headtube

Hard to judge the words out of context.jschwarz
Jun 23, 2003 9:43 AM
1. Almost fully extended.
2.Don't know. I'd have to check tonight when at home.

Based on everything I've heard, I think I'm going to try and return it and get the smaller one. Hopefully there won't be a big problem.

Thanks for your help.
Saw your post belowScot_Gore
Jun 23, 2003 12:21 PM
Saw below that your going to exchange the bike. Sounds like a good idea. If you're nearly fully extended in the drops then I expect you'll see the front hub more than 1" behind the headtube in test #2, indicating that your "cockpit" area is too large.

Good luck

re: Fit?MShaw
Jun 23, 2003 10:23 AM
At 5'10", what the heck are you doing riding a 54cm bike?
I'm 5'8" and ride a 54...

Try the new frame, you may just like the longer TT: not bunched up, can breathe better, etc.

Worst case, re-sell it!

re: Fit?jschwarz
Jun 23, 2003 10:57 AM
I have short legs.

I just spoke to Getaway Bike and fortunately they have agreed to exchange it for the right size.