Bike advice for Large rider.

Ecky Mack

New Member
Hi guys and gals, hope we're all doing well!

I've been looking at getting into riding for general fitness purposes and weight loss, my issue is i seem to exceed the weight limits of every bike manufacturer that i've checked, I'm 6'5 and around 160kg (bit less but i always round up) any help would be much appreciated

TIA,

Mack
 

Drago

Flouncing Nobber
Hi Mack,

That's big, bigger than me, and I'm not a titch.

That's seriously beyond the weight limits of most machines. I'm a bit over (6'4" and 116kg) and dont suffer problems, but you've 44kg on me.

Ok, I reckon try and find an old but tidy 1990s mountain bike. Reasonable quality ones have sturdy cromo frames that should, just, manage. If they don't then you've not lost out big time financially if you have to bin it. Slap on some road biased tyres and you have a robust and fun tarmac terrorist. Get a large framed one to minimise the amount of exposed seat post, and thus minimise leverage and the chances of the frame braking at the seat tube junction, which is a top spot for failures with excessively heavy riders.

Good lluck in your quest.
 

Cycleops

Guru
Location
Accra, Ghana
Yes it is a problem but not an insurmountable one. As Drago says a 90s steel MTB might just do for you and is worth a try as you can pick them up cheap.
If you are looking to cycle as as a means to loose weight it will help but you need to get a good diet plan as well.
You might find this article interesting although its aimed at the US market but has some good tips. They seem to think that a 29er MTB is a good option as well as the fashionable fat bikes with big tyres;
https://www.yescycling.com/best-bikes-for-heavy-riders/
Good luck.
 

alicat

Legendary Member
Location
Staffs
Whatever bike you use, you are more likely to get away with it if you ride the bike sensibly i.e. don't drop off kerbs, do go round potholes and drain covers and do stand on the pedals if you can't avoid an obstacle in time. That will go a long way towards making a bike suitable. Sorry if that's teaching you to suck eggs. ^_^
 

MichaelW2

Veteran
Cannondale used to be the best choice for big riders. You need a frame as stiff as possible with big fat frame tubes.
When it comes to wheels look for 36 spoke wheels, it is probably worth getting replacement ones built up by a touring specialist such as SPA cycles or SJS cycles.

Fat tyres will help protect the frame from peak stresses. Only high end suspension forks would be durable enough to do similar.

There are expensive niche big man bike builders but 'dales used to make XXL as stock.
 

si_c

Veteran
Location
Wirral
A retro style mountain bike should be fine, something like an old Trek hardtail - go for a 25" frame to minimise seat post extension as @Drago said. I'm 6'5" and I was in the region of 140kg for a while and used a Trek 4500 whilst I lost weight. It's still in use today.

Assuming that you are careful and don't abuse a frame or wheels then I don't see a problem, and if you get a more retro style bike as mentioned above, it's going to be second hand anyway so your exposure to loss is reduced should you end up with a damaged frame. That being said, it's more likely to be the wheels that suffer if you are heavy, and they can be repaired readily enough should that be the case.
 

CXRAndy

Guru
Location
Lincs
Steel Framed MTB with 36 spokes and large tyres. If you want fast road tyres Schwalbe do the G One in 2.25" for 29" wheel I'd bet there are others too. Lots of air in tyres to act as suspension
 

SkipdiverJohn

Über Member
Location
London
I reckon try and find an old but tidy 1990s mountain bike. Reasonable quality ones have sturdy cromo frames that should, just, manage. If they don't then you've not lost out big time financially if you have to bin it. Slap on some road biased tyres and you have a robust and fun tarmac terrorist. Get a large framed one to minimise the amount of exposed seat post, and thus minimise leverage and the chances of the frame braking at the seat tube junction, which is a top spot for failures with excessively heavy riders..
Have to agree with @Drago on this. The last thing a tall heavy rider needs is a small frame with a silly long seatpost sticking out halfway into outer space. Big frame, short-ish seatpost = less likely for anything to fail. Also means you can get the handlebars up to a sensible height!
Any of these would probably hold up if ridden in a sympathetic manner and not just crashed through potholes and kerbs. I like my old Raleighs, so it's no coincidence that these all hail from Nottingham. :-

1991 Raleigh Moonrun with a 23" brazed frame made of butted Reynolds 501 cro-moly steel. Raleigh made several similar bikes around this time, all with the 501 frame, just different paint schemes and component specs. Not super rare, but not super common either, as they were quite expensive when new. You need to keep your eyes open for them to appear.

RALEIGH UNKNOWN MTB (3).jpg

Or, at the more budget-oriented mass-produced end of the market, go for something like this Raleigh Sabre with a 23" welded frame made of 18-23 plain gauge hi-tensile steel. This one dates from 1994. Again, Raleigh made a number of welded steel models with different level components, but all using the same frame. Sold in their tens of thousands and still very common. Most similar bikes won't look like mine after 25 years use/abuse, but are cheap to buy used and robust even if often scruffy.

RALEIGH SABRE MTB.jpg

The last true Nottingham-built rigid MTB's like this 1999 Firefly had frames made from an unidentified semi-oversize cro-moly steel tubing. They will be stiffer than any of the older frames made from Road sized tubing and also have more front tyre clearance under the forks. At 14 stone, it's not an issue for me, but a really heavy rider might benefit from the increased frame stiffness, although the wheels will always be the weak point on pretty much any heavily-loaded bike.

RALEIGH FIREFLY MTB.jpg
 
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