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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I am in the market for a new steel road frame. Landshark is on my short list of builders mainly because of the positive comments I have heard about the bikes on this forum and others. So I went to the Landshark website and took a look at the gallery section. It seemed there were a large number of photos showing road bikes with a lot of stem spacers, like 4 to 5 cm worth. I may be wrong but it seems that those bikes don't fit the folks that bought them so well if they need that many spacers. I wonder if they did not convey their real needs and/or measurements to the builder or if he just builds them that way. Here is a pic of one in particular. Anyone have any comments?
 

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Soul Mining
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That appears to be a small frame, possibly built for a female. Women tend to have long legs and short torsos, so their reach is a bit shorter, which often means the bars have to be higher than what a man would require. This would mean more spacers if the geometry isn't custom.

Maybe she has back issues and can't ride with much drop?
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
I would like to seriously consider getting a Landshark becauseI like the looks of most of the other bikes in the gallery, but I wonder what happened with some of the others. They are all supposed to be custom fit. Check these out...
 

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You're Not the Boss of Me
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Seems to me like although the builds are custom, they aren't building with a sloping TT. That and a slightly longer headtube could avoid the spacers. But also notice none of those bikes has any rise in the stem. Folks probably needed that but were too aesthetically picky to allow it.
 

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Fresh out of the box

My guess is that some of the owners shot pictures as soon as they had their bikes put together. Sometimes people will start out with a lot of spacers, then gradually remove them and cut the steerer to fit once they find the level that feels right. Otherwise, that does look like quite a stack, especially if it's a custom bike.
 

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My guess is that all the bikes pictured here are for older (or otherwise less flexible) folks looking for a more upright look, but also looking for traditional geometry because they're used to the top tube height/head tube length provided by quill stems. Either way, it looks like all of these buyers shied away from compact frames for one reason or another. Landshark is a very reputable builder - aside from just very, very nice painjobs - and there's no reason they can build you what you want.

Also of note: the most saddle-handelbar drop on any of the bikes pictured is 3-5 cm or so - if you're used to a more substantial drop, or want a racing bike, etc, then you can subtract 3-5cm...pretty much what you're worried about, no? The point, at least, is that your custom frame should fit you, and any good builder should be able to do that. If you want a longer headtube, or compact geometry, or something of the new 'comfort road' variety, any builder (except maybe Don McClung :) ) should be able/willing to do it for you.

And as the other poster said, many framebuilders ship with lots and lots of room on the steerer, and leave it to the buyer or fitting shop to have it cut down.
 

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My Waterford came the same way. The steerer tubes are not cut until you are sure of the fit. There is alot of time and effort in the fork and it is not easy to replace if the steerer is cut too short. You simply stack the spacers on top of the stem until it works for you, then cut.

TH
 

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Why worry....

about the looks of other people's bikes? If you have a custom built, you are responsible, at least to some extent, to be sure you get the head tube length that's appropirate for the amount of spacers and stem angle needed to produce a particular bar height.

In some of the picutures, it's obvious tha the bars are very high relative to the saddle and most are not using a high rise stem to reduce the spacers.

I don't need a custom, but if I had one built, it would have an 80 or 84 degree stem and 1cm spacer at most. If you're not smart enough to figure out the HT length required, you live with the result.
 
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