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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
What changes can I make to get more weight over the front wheel? I feel like my weight is 75% over the back and 25% over the front. While I am riding and a truck is going in the opposite direction when I get hit by it's draft my front wheel just gets pushed to the side. Same with a gust of wind. Does not matter which wheels I have on, same effect. So I am trying to get some more weight over the front just not sure which is the best way.

Thanks, Norm
 

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The most effective change is to lower the handlebars. By doing that, your upper body is moved down and forward, putting a great deal more weight onto the front wheel. Of course, this also puts more weight and strain on everything that supports your upper body. But with good saddle positioning (far enough back) and a few months of adaption, you might be able to deal with that.

On a personal note: I'm constantly amazed to see people on so-called racing bikes set up so the place they put their hands (usually the brake hoods) are so high above the saddle that the rider basically sits in a beach cruiser position. All their weight is on their butt, no weight is on the hands and they're about as aerodynamic as a Gothic cathedral. Not saying your bike looks like the one in the photo below, and I realize this setup is almost always done in a desparate quest for comfort. But a sensible aero position with your hands on the hoods no higher than your saddle can be very comfortable as well.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Wim,

Thanks for the info. I was thinking about that but was not sure that would be a good way of doing it. Going to remove another spacer to lower the bars more.

Side note: My bike is nothing like the one in the photo. I believe I have a 70mm drop from saddle to bar.
 

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Cranky Old Bastard
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I take it you have road bars?
Is the bike the right size for you and have you had it fitted?

When you're on the hoods do your bars block out the front axle?
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
I take it you have road bars?
Is the bike the right size for you and have you had it fitted?

When you're on the hoods do your bars block out the front axle?
road bars: Yes
Is the bike the right size you? This is the million dollar question. I feel that the that it is too big for me. I feel stretched out. TT is a centimeter longer than my previous bike (Madone 6 series H3 geometry).

Have you had it fitted? I had a fitting before getting my current bike (Pinarello Paris). We did the fitting on the Madone and based on that info the Pinarello was ordered. I feel that in order to get the head tube length I need that the larger frame was ordered. But what do I know I just ride. I am no fit guru.

When you're on the hoods do your bars block out the front axle? No, I see the axle behind the hub.
 

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My bike is nothing like the one in the photo. I believe I have a 70mm drop from saddle to bar.
That's plenty of drop if the bars are angled properly and the hoods are in the right place on the bars. (I qualified my statement because back in the day, a bar drop of 70 mm invariably meant that the hoods were much lower than that. But with the the modern level transitions to the hoods, "bar drop" can actually be more than "hood drop" if the bars get rotated up a bit.)

What helps with steadying the front wheel is to put your hands into the "hooks" of the bars—essentially on the drops, but also as far forward as you can. If you also push against the bars, you can steady the front wheel some more during the few seconds of buffeting after a large truck has gone by you. And by going on the drops or into the hooks, you automatically put more weight on the front wheel because you bring your upper body down and forward.
 

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Anything that makes you lean your torso more forward, so that mass is shifted toward the front, will change the weight distribution. Try putting your hands in the drops and bending your arms to get low, and see how that changes things.

Your handling issues in crosswinds may not have anything to do with weight distribution anyway. Unless you have a very deep rim in front, what you're feeling is not a result of the wheel being pushed. It's your body being pushed, and then you are correcting for that lean. Try anticipating the crosswind effects by getting low and leaning the upwind shoulder down.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
I am in the drops when I get pushed. That is what is bothering me. Hoods are level with the top of the bars. Rims and either Zipp 101 or Hed C2 Belgium. Unsettling when you get pushed like that while descending.

Would sliding the saddle forward a bit help?
 

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Cranky Old Bastard
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When you're on the hoods do your bars block out the front axle? No, I see the axle behind the hub.
I'm not a fit expert.

It is only a guide but when you look down when your hands are on the hoods the bars should block out the front axle. If you see the axle behind the bars your head is too far back. Your top tube may be too long, as you expect.

You can't just move the saddle forward because its' position should be set by your thigh/foot/knee relationship with the pedals.

You could get a shorter stem so that your bars would block the view of the axle and if you feel too stretched out now that would help you be more comfortable, but that won't help you get any more weight on the front wheel.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Actually went from a 90mm to 100mm stem to help control the front end. Removed one spacer when I swapped. It helped a bit.

Took me a while to figure out the "head is too far back".

Really sucks that going through the fit to determine what size frame to get and in the end getting the wrong size frame. Just to make a sale.
 

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Cranky Old Bastard
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Actually went from a 90mm to 100mm stem to help control the front end. Removed one spacer when I swapped. It helped a bit.
Really sucks that going through the fit to determine what size frame to get and in the end getting the wrong size frame. Just to make a sale.
I'm sorry but it does sound to me like the bike is too long for you. You said you feel too "stretched out" already and anything you do to put more weight on the front will make that worse.

You could try moving the saddle forward a little at a time, especially if you haven't had it fitted perfectly.
Some fitters say that the old KOPS method (Knee Over Pedal Spindle) is outdated but many others still use it, at least as a starting point.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
I figured that it is too big for me. Frame I am looking at will not be available until the end of summer so I am just trying to make this work until I pick that one up.
 

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Rather than guess about the weight distribution, measure it. Get a scale and some blocks to put under the rear wheel, so the bike is approximately level. Get on the bike and assume your riding position. Placing the bike close to a wall so you can throw an elbow out to the wall to aid in balancing is wise.

Record the weight registered, then pick the bike up and get on the scale to get the total bike and rider weight. Divide the front weight by the total to get the percentage on the front. I like to see about 45% on the front.
 

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Rather than guess about the weight distribution, measure it. Get a scale and some blocks to put under the rear wheel, so the bike is approximately level. Get on the bike and assume your riding position. Placing the bike close to a wall so you can throw an elbow out to the wall to aid in balancing is wise.

Record the weight registered, then pick the bike up and get on the scale to get the total bike and rider weight. Divide the front weight by the total to get the percentage on the front. I like to see about 45% on the front.
^^^ this.

It is always interesting to me when people say "it feels like" when instead of "feeling" you can easily measure. "It feels like I'm 1 mph slower" but you can put a stopwatch on it and measure it. "It feels much heavier" but you can just weigh it. "It feels like my weight distribution is 75/25" (highly unlikely) but t can be easily measured. The list goes on and on.
 

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It is always interesting to me when people say "it feels like" when instead of "feeling" you can easily measure.
Just as an adjunct: many people are obsessively measuring things like average speed, average heart rate, elevation gain, calories burned and who knows what else. But many of those people can't or won't measure a chain for wear, the diameter of a seat post or the width of a handlebar. My theory (and that's all it is) is that if something can be measured with an electronic gizmo, no problem. But if it involves an ancient mechanical tool like a ruler: not so easy.
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
Will do the weight distribution tonight. I do not obsess over my averages. I look at them but that's about it. Some rides good, some bad. I do not race so it's not that important. Just keep track of my miles. I do some of my own wrenching not all but a good bit. Going old school (non digital) for the scale.
 

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Will do the weight distribution tonight.
Let us know what you come up with. I've done this a few times and have always wound up with an about 50/50 distribution when on the drops. But I have a very long upper body in relation to my overall height, so my head would hang way out there over the front wheel of a bike whose frame would be a little too small for me by choice.

And for what it's worth: Apologize if it seemed that way, but my "adjunct" post wasn't directed at you at all. It was a general observation based on what I see and hear while working in a bike shop three days a week.
 

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Is your front wheel skidding or steering. The front wheel must steer (counter steer) in response to a side gust to prevent from falling. Front wheels are also prone to getting deflected by gusts because their center of lateral area is ahead of the steering axis. Neither of the these are direct function of front/rear weight distribution, but rather of bike geometry and dynamics.
 
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