Is my bike too small?

Discussion in 'Mountain Biking, Trials and BMX' started by gmtfd, 27 Feb 2018.

  1. cyberknight

    cyberknight Legendary Member

    Location:
    South Derbyshire
    get your set back right 1st , then reach
    http://www.jimlangley.net/crank/bikefit.html
     
  2. OP
    OP
    gmtfd

    gmtfd Senior Member

    Really interesting article cyberknight, but I am somewhat confused!

    Langley suggests that with the cranks level your forward lower leg should be at a right angle to the ground:


    On the other hand, this (http://www.mbr.co.uk/news/mountain-bike-geometry-326498) states "Modern bikes favour steeper [seat tube] angles that put the saddle directly over the bottom bracket, making pedalling easier and more efficient".

    Surely there's a contradiction here?
     
  3. smutchin

    smutchin Cat 6 Racer

    Location:
    The Red Enclave
    You what? 100mm is very much within the normal/average range for a road bike, but for an MTB it's substantially longer than is typical.

    Not necessarily. The link @cyberknight posted relates to road bikes. You ride an MTB so requirements may be a little different.

    This article relates specifically to fitting on an MTB: https://www.bikeradar.com/gear/article/technique-perfect-mountain-bike-fit-29498/

    This article discusses stem length for MTBs: https://www.merlincycles.com/blog/buyers-guide-to-mountain-bike-stems/
     
  4. ColinJ

    ColinJ A big clot!

    Fairly short compared to what is available, rather than short compared to what is 'normal/average'!

    The stem on my MTB is 120 mm and I had no problems with it.

    I recently increased the length of the stem on my CAAD5 (road bike) from 110 mm to 130 mm and it suits me much better.
     
  5. smutchin

    smutchin Cat 6 Racer

    Location:
    The Red Enclave
    As per the article I linked to earlier, stem length can significantly affect bike handling, so just fitting a longer stem might solve one problem but create another.

    Personally, I suspect the OP's problem is caused by the saddle being too low, but that's a bit of a guess. I don't claim any expertise on this matter, especially not with regard to MTBs.
     
    Nigeyy likes this.
  6. cyberknight

    cyberknight Legendary Member

    Location:
    South Derbyshire
    the article also covers flat bar and the above articles dont mention setback apart from somewhere in the centre afaik
    I think my main issue was getting your saddle set back right first for the OP then sort reach out.It also depends on what sort of riding your doing, short intense efforts might benefit from a saddle over the BB but is it better for longer duration rides ?
     
  7. smutchin

    smutchin Cat 6 Racer

    Location:
    The Red Enclave
    Yes, hence my comment that the MBR link posted by @gmtfd doesn't necessarily contradict the link you posted - it's not a definite yes or no. He hasn't really given us much information about the type of riding he's doing though.
     
  8. OP
    OP
    gmtfd

    gmtfd Senior Member

    Fair point! In the past it's mainly been off-road, but recently I've been using the MTB around town too, as I've been having knee problems and my single-speed bike obviously puts a lot more strain on my knees, especially uphill. It's since I've been using the MTB on the road that I've started to wonder whether it's too small.

    Maybe, then, the answer to my dilemma is that road riding requires a different setup to off-road. Seems obvious now but somehow I'd never thought of that!
     
    smutchin likes this.
  9. I like Skol

    I like Skol Hold my beer and watch this......

    Location:
    Ashton-under-Lyne
    I'm not saying I am typical or even normal but the only changes I have to make to my MTB to switch from off-road demon to 100 mile cruiser is to swap the tyres. The right position is the right position.
     
  10. Nigeyy

    Nigeyy Guru

    Location:
    Massachusetts, USA
    FWIW concerning "fit" articles (which interestingly can contradict each other anyway), I don't have too much faith in them. While they can be a rough guide, I think personal preferences can make a difference. Sometimes it's a case of experimenting until you reach your "right" position. And even then, that can change with age (my riding position has changed with the advent of age and err... extra stomach challenged dimensions...).

    Coming back to the OP, we still don't know whether you are tackling more extreme obstacles (sometimes requiring you to go back over your seat) or even a pic of you on your bike.....
     
    ColinJ likes this.
  11. OP
    OP
    gmtfd

    gmtfd Senior Member

    Update: Having done a fair bit of reading around the subject, and taking into account all the helpful comments above, I realised that (as smutchin suggested) my saddle was set too low. I've now moved the saddles on both my MTB and single speed bike upwards and forwards. Everything is better: I feel more comfortable and more of my weight is over the front wheel, which helps with handling. I'm still naturally inclined to sit further back on the saddle when pedalling fast on road, but I think that's OK. Thanks everyone for helping me sort that one out.
     
    Threevok likes this.
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