Bike fit / stem length / etc

Discussion in 'Bicycle Mechanics and Repairs' started by Justin, 15 Jun 2008.

  1. Justin

    Justin New Member

    Hi all,

    New member and first post.

    I returned to cycling two years ago (after almost 20 years) and bought myself a LeMond Reno and have put quite a few miles in since then.

    However I think I might have rushed the purchase and got a bike that is slightly too big - there is plenty of adjustment in the seat post so I can find the optimum height for my leg length at 29" (pretty sure the frame is a 53cm or a 55cm). The problem is that I feel a bit stretched and that the steering is a little too responsive to handlebar movements - I don't remember it being like that all those years ago. I am 5'7" and used to ride a 22" when younger.

    I was looking for some advice as to how to resolve this, I think I have two major options:

    1. Get a different bike / frame that is a better fit (I like the Giant OCR/SCR compact design a lot)
    2. Buy a shorter stem - currently its running a 120mm, would (say) a 60mm be better?

    Any advice, further info needed?


  2. Steve Austin

    Steve Austin The Marmalade Kid

    I would try a 100mm first.
  3. dantheman

    dantheman Veteran

    im sure someone will correct me if im wrong, but, i thought that a shorter stem would make the steering more responsive???- although at least you wouldnt be over reaching as much...
  4. Fab Foodie

    Fab Foodie hanging-on in quiet desperation ...


    I find this is a useful guide to fitting a bike.

    Basically get your seating right relative to the pedals (as explained) and then get the reach sorted. BTW an 80mm stem will steer OK, I have bikes with 80mm stems. Also bar type makes a difference, I've recently changed to some "Omega-Compact bars ( ~ £25 Parker International) which have slightly shorter top section to the brake hoods and less "drop" than other "anatomic" bars, hence bringing everything a tad closer.
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