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What exactly is involved in the fitting of a bike to a rider? Do you find the best bike with out changing components or the bike you most like and change various bits and pieces
 

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classiquesklassieker
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bits said:
What exactly is involved in the fitting of a bike to a rider? Do you find the best bike with out changing components or the bike you most like and change various bits and pieces
Well, bike fitting is taking the variables of the rider (such as height, arm lengths, femur lengths, leg lengths, shoulder width, weight, fitness, style, goals, etc.) and finding the best "positioning" of the rider's body parts in a cycling position. Usually the position is determined by (relative to each other):
- where the saddle should be
- where the bottom bracket should be
- where the motion of the pedals should be
- where the rider's hands should be when on the hoods, in the drops, on the top of the handlebar
- where the rider's feet should be in relation to the pedal spindles
There may be other parameters, too.

Then take all of the above, and see if a particular bike can be modified to fit the desired parameters. Usually one starts with the saddle relative to the bottom bracket, and then what the range of pedaling motion should be. Then decide where the hands should be.

And then you can start worrying about the other small things like handlebar tilt angle, saddle tilt angle, shifter position, handlebar tape color, and the hair color of the podium girl who will present you with flowers on your first victory.

I'm sure others will chime in and add to the answer above. But that's who I approach it.

Try some of these online calculators:

http://www.competitivecyclist.com/za/CCY?PAGE=FIT_CALCULATOR_INTRO
http://www.coloradocyclist.com/bikefit/
 

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bits said:
What exactly is involved in the fitting of a bike to a rider? Do you find the best bike with out changing components or the bike you most like and change various bits and pieces
Well, in my case, it was a pretty involved process by my LBS. First, the sales guy checked me out, asked what kind of riding I planned do, how much I typically rode in a season, etc. He then asked what kind of bike I was interested in buying.
After picking out a very sweet Trek Madone 5.2, he put the bike on a trainer. At his request, I had brought my shoes. I clicked into the pedals and he began to adjust. The seat was first. He moved it up until he felt my legs were positioned correctly. He then adjusted it on the seat post so that I had the proper height. He then moved the seat a little back on the post. (I have short legs and a long torso) He then went to work on the handlebars. He didn't like how I fit the stem (the piece that holds the handlebars) so he swapped it out with another. He then had me go into the drops and made various adjustments so I was positioned correctly. He used a plumb line to make sure that I was lined up properly on the frame. There were various other adjustments made.
This all took about 90 minutes. When it was done, I fit the bike and the bike fit me.I recommend the process highly.
 
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