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Could my bike actually be too small?(10 posts)

Could my bike actually be too small?Mr Nick
Jul 12, 2003 1:29 AM
I posted a topic and got a reply that said my frame was possibly too small. I honestly don't know how to go back and handle this with my lbs. I am 6'2" and riding a 57cm. Since this is my first road bike I don't know how to approach my lbs. What would be a good way to bring up sizing, without starting a war? I have to admit guys, if the post is correct about the size of my bike than I am going to be pretty freaked out because I spent a good portion of my savings on a bike that I thought I could grow with. If it is too small than I am pretty screwed. Anybody got ideas?
re: Could my bike actually be too small?Juanmoretime
Jul 12, 2003 3:33 AM
I don't know your inseam length so I can't comment on if it's the wrong size. I ride a 59 centemeter Litespeed Vortex with a 57.5 top tube, 110 mm stem. I aslo am 6'2" with a 34" inseam. If I remember correctly, LeMonds have long top tubes, so a 57 maybe right depending upon the length. What is your top tube length?
Have you ridden it yet?...thatsmybush
Jul 12, 2003 3:38 AM
IF you ride it and are comfortable than it fits. There are so many variables, torso to leg length etc. No post can replace how the bike feels after you throw your leg over it and ride it.
hmm?the bull
Jul 13, 2003 3:52 AM
I disagree! I had a bike bike that was too small.It was all I knew and I thought IT was comfortable.I am 6 ft tall and the 56 cm bike was cheap and it felt okay so I bought it!
I now ride a 59 (58 tt) and when I first got on the bike it felt to big! After riding it for a couple of days it felt fine.
I think the frame you are on is too small unless your torso is very small compared to your legs.
simple tests..C-40
Jul 12, 2003 3:49 AM
A frame can be too small vertically or horizontally. Measuring the vertical height of the saddle above the top tube (near the nose of the saddle) tells a lot about the vertical size of the frame. Since many frames only come in 2cm increments, here's my recommendation. A saddle that is 17cm above the top tube will yield an 8-10cm height difference from the bars to the top of the saddle without the use of steering tube spacers. There is no need for the saddle to be much higher than this. If the saddle is more than 19cm above the TT, then the frame is definitely too small vertically (except perhaps for riders with very long arms).

If a frame is too small horizontally, it means that you can't produce the reach that you need with a 130 or 140 stem. Before passing judgement on the top tube length, be sure that the saddle fore/aft adjustment is correct. If you are not familiar with measuring knee over pedal (KOP) go to and read the fit info. You can also experiment with moving the saddle back from KOP. Moving the saddle back is not the normal method of increasing reach, but many folks find that they can produce more power with the saddle set back 1-2cm. If this saddle position works for you, then it would also help to cure a horizontally "too small" condition.
Jul 12, 2003 6:17 AM
Just read your previous post. If your bars are only 1.5 inches below the saddle with a -17 (73) degree stem, you must have a lot of spacer under the stem (how much?). An 84 or 90 degree stem would help to reduce the spacers.

A 110mm stem is not very long at all for this size frame and your height. I can't imagine excessive stem length being a problem. You are also making the mistake of moving the saddle forward to adjust the reach to the bars. Read up on setting the knee to pedal relationship at I suspect that your saddle is too far forward.

I see nothing from your description that would indicate that this frame is too small. I supect you are merely an inexperienced rider. It takes a lot of miles to become comfortable on a road bike. If you don't put in a lot of miles or don't have a high level of flexibility and good abdominal and back strength, you may never be comfortable unless you invest some time in strength training.
+17 degree stem not -17 with 35mm of spacers.Mr Nick
Jul 12, 2003 12:13 PM
Good to knowMr Nick
Jul 12, 2003 12:10 PM
thanks for the input. i am inexperienced and out of shape. those things i am trying to work on daily. i just recieved that post that said the bike sounded small and i wanted to make sure that my lbs wasn't pulling one over on me. i like the guys who work there but you can never be sure.
received bad advice...C-40
Jul 12, 2003 2:05 PM
Without a valid cycling inseam measurement, people who dispense sizing information are just guessing.

The saddle height measurement of 17-19cm is a reliable test of appropriate frame size, unless of course, you have the saddle set too high or too low.

I didn't read your posting about the stem accurately. I assume that you have a 90 degree stem, which would yield 17 degrees of rise from the horizontal. If the bars are 3-4cm below the saddle with this stem angle and 3.5cm of spacers, the vertical size of the frame is about right. If your stem has a greater angle, then I would suspect that frame might be on the small side.

The change of seatposts was probably not wise. Using a straight-up seatpost and moving the saddle forward should never be required. Moving the saddle too far forward can reduce the ability to apply torque to the cranks and place more weight on your hands. Read the fit info at to learn about weight balance.

I seriously recommend that you read also the fit info at

It should not be that difficult to get a reasonable fit, but a good fit does not guarantee comfort. Cycling fitness is also required.
KOP not possible with stock seatpostMr Nick
Jul 12, 2003 9:48 PM
according to my lbs and the gentleman who has been working with my fit the change in seatpost was necessary for KOP. with the original setback seatpost that comes stock KOP was not possible. even with the thomson post the seat is still forward slightly to obtain KOP. if i moved my seat back 1-2cm like many have suggested it would be pretty much centered on the post. i don't know if i'm built strange, but right now my knee is were its supposed to be.