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Need some opinions on fitting to a Cannondale Synapse 5 carbon...

My local military exchange (overseas) just got a couple of Synapse 5 Compacts in, and they have them for $1700 even (no tax, shipping, etc). Also, I will have some wrenching support as I can apparently work with a local shop for any tune ups, mechanical issues, etc - I just can't take it there first for fitting, and nobody else here that I have seen has Cannondales.

The only problem, is the "sales" staff really has no idea on how to size anyone to a road bike, so it is kind of up to me to try and figure it out. Hopefully I can get some assistance from this site where I have been reading and trying to learn a lot prior to getting into road riding.

The price appears to be pretty good comparable to what I've seen online, but my question is on the fit primarily. They got two of these bikes in - both 56cm. From what I have read, I am thinking that a 56 may be just a tad on the big side for me. I am 5'8, and have a 30" inseam. I did the whole "stand-over" test, and the top tube rests just below my boys, so as far as that portion of the fit it seems ok. Do any of you more experienced fit experts have any thoughts on this for me? Could I comfortably pull off a 56?
 

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Hey ManyStopLights,

First I want to say Semper Fi !!! Thank you for serving our country !!

I am 5'9" 30 inch inseam and bought a 56cm thinking the same thing; "I can stand over it and the bar is touching my private, but it feels ok"

Nope, get a 54cm even if you have to wait. I have experienced much knee pain and hip pain for having hurried into that bike. Went and got measured yesterday by surprise a LBS did it very meticulously and he said I was a 54.89 ... so you are probably a 54 as well. I would ask the exchange if they can order you a bike. I used to order stuff all the time back in the mid-90s when I was in the Marines.

What branch? Where you stationed? just poking if you can't say it's ok.
 

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Keep in mind that the synapse doesn't come in a 54 . The next smallest size from a 56 is a 53. It's unfortunate that ther is such a large jump between the 2 sizes, as many people will be a little to tall for the 53 but a little short for the 56. I'm 5' 9" and ride a 58, which is at least 2cm larger than what I should be on, but I prefer to have a higher, but more stretched out position. At 5'8", I'd probably go with the 56 rather than the 53, though either size will probably work fine for you. With the adjustments available via seat heigth and stem rise and length, you'll undoubtably be able to tweak either size to your personal preference.
 
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