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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
After weeks (actually months) of research I've gotten to the stage where I am starting to go into bike shops and trying out bikes. I am looking for a road bike in the $2000 range. I do not race or plan to race. I ride many 2 hour rides with my occasional longest ride being about 120 km (75 miles). I am more interested in sacrificing performance for comfort than the other way around. Having said that, I am fairly flexible and don't have a problem getting into more aero positions, just don't have a desire to, at least for a very long time.

I do have a bit of a fit issue though. I am 186 cm tall (6'1") and have a bit of a longer inseam at 92cm (36.2 inches). When I used the Competitive Cyclist fit calculator, which was the best online fit calculator I found as it takes into account many measurements, it tells me that I should be riding a 61cm frame (c-t) in the competitive (aero fit) and as big as a 64 cm frame for a relaxed "French" fit, with the top tube in the 60-61cm range.

Now when I went to the LBS to try some bikes (Specialized Roubaix, Cannondale Synapse, six13), the guy there is trying to put me on a 58cm frame. Coincidentally that is the largest size they carry. He is trying to convince me that this would fit me just fine, because the top tube of 60cm would be way to long for me.

Anyone have an opinion on my fit? Does the guy at the LBS perhaps know more than I do about my fit or is he just trying to sell me a bike they have?
 

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I think that the 58 cm is probably about correct. And he is completely correct that you'd find a 60 cm top tube WAY too long. You'd be using a 70 or 80 mm stem which is a bit on the short side. That would also change the weight distribution on the bike.

At 6'4" I ride a 61-62 in a racing fit but I have a 35" inseam. I find that a 58 cm top tube is about right so I would assume it to be too long for you though probably within your reach.

By the way - I haven't seen a stock bike with a top tube longer than 59 cm.
 

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The LBS that I buy from measures prospective buyers and uses those measurements to determine which bike will best fit the individual. They also have a fit kit bike that can be configured to simulate the bike you may be considering. They set up the fit kit bike for me so that I could "try" a frame brand that they don't even carry. I would suggest finding a bike shop that gives the kind of service that I am used to.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Thanks for the input, perhaps I should try both to see what fits me better (if I can find that large frame somewhere in the area).

I don't know if I made this clear but they want to put me on a 58 cm frame (seat tube measurement), and coincidentally, that frame also has a 58 cm top tube for the Specialized Roubaix, 59 for the Cannondales.

All the bikes I want to try have one size bigger (again Specialize Roubaix, Cannondale Synapse and six13), all of which are about a 61cm measured size (Cannondale calls it a 63 for some reason) and all of those have a 60cm top tube. I am just wandering if this will fit me better with a shorter stem, but it's kinda difficult to try those as I haven't found a dealer in the area that stocks those sizes.

Is it worth looking and even travelling a bit to find a dealer that stocks those sizes so that I can give it a try?
 

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Since there are many factors that effect fit, it is very difficult to get good advise from people who can't see you on the bike. Having said that, I would start with the wrenchscience.com fit calculator. I've had very good luck with this one and the results are very close to my lbs fit kit numbers.

For reference, I'm 6ft 1/2 inch with a 35 inch inseam. I ride a 58 Tarmac with a 90 stem +14 degrees to get the saddle to bar drop at about 5-6 cm. I'm guessing the 58 Roubaix would be about right for you (the slightly taller HT should compensate for the inseam difference).

Riding each size would be best. Good Luck!
 

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I am 184 cm - 6'1" and my inseam is 34 inches
My Fuji Professional is a 58 cm model and fits me well.
If your inseam is 36 inches than you propably have a little shorter upper body than I have. So it seems that a 58 is for you.
 

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There is also some variability based on how the manufacturer measures the bike. Some use BB to center of top tube some use BB to top of top tube ect.

I know Cannondale's measurement leads it to be a slightly smaller frame size. For example I am a 54.something (almost 55cm) on a specialized but on a cannondale I am a 53cm.

Also, I would go to a shop that has at least something bigger than you are looking at. There may be a 95% chance that it is completely horribly wrong but if you are dropping $2000 on something you will spend hours on I think taking the extra hour is well worth it.
 

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Looking from the other side

I'm 6'4" with a 37" inseam and have a 65 cm roadbike (custom Teesdale) based on the length of the seat tube. I was measured for this bike by a Serotta fit expert. After riding this frame for about seven years, I can tell you that this bike is definitely not too big for me. But, of course, you're not me.

If I were you, I would look at how much room you have between the top tube and your crotch when standing flat footed -- want at least an inch, but not more than two -- and whether or not the bars feel like they are at a good height.

If you're worried about the top tube length, you can easily find a good quality stem that is only 70 mm, effectively cutting 3 to 4 centimeters off the top tube length.
 
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