Long legs - uneasy about buying online

thegeezer3

Warming-Up
Oct 17, 2010
11
0
0
yokohama
#1
I was just about to purchase a defy 3 from wiggles after some of hte kind advice i received here about choices. I just went to ys road to get my size and i gave the salesman a shock. Im 180cm tall but my inseam measured 91cm. So its official ive got long legs. He told me he didnt have any large frames for me to sit on but plommped me on a defy 3 size ML and had to really whack the seat up to some odd looking height. I tried sitting on it but it felt so uncomfortable when holding the handle bars.

So now im wondering how this affects my purchasing decision. Seing as i have freaky proportions how do i go about getting sized up in a country which seems to only stock medium bikes?

Im a newbie to bikes as well so have no idea about sizing and geomettry.

Can anyone provide any tips?
 

GSAstuto

Maximum Pace
Oct 11, 2009
945
242
103
tokyo
www.roadfixie.com
#2
Roughly you are looking at a 60cm - 61cm framesize (classic). (Inseam * .67) being the 'catchall' measurement. Seat Height would be around 80cm. The Defy I according to their website comes in an XL size (58.5) which may even be a bit on the tall side for you given its a compact geometry.

Here's a more detailed fit calculator -- http://www.competitivecyclist.com/za/CCY?PAGE=FIT_CALCULATOR_INTRO

Concern I'd have with over-sizing a bike for you would be that the TT would be too long if you get into the XL size - but without knowing ALL your measurements - this is difficult to guess (or estimate).

BTW- In what way did it feel uncomfortable?
 

thegeezer3

Warming-Up
Oct 17, 2010
11
0
0
yokohama
#4
hi thanks for those replies and links. Im going ot measure myself up and use that link you provided, ill post the results here.

The bike in the shop was an ML sized defy 3 and the shop assistant did tell me that it was going to be to small but to demonstrate how high my seat would have to be he cranked the one on that model up to the right size. It looked more like a penny fathing than a road bike. Anyway as a result of the extreme geometry I really had to REALLY hunch over when grabbing the bars. Im not looking to do any racing so looking for a less extreme posture. Im sure the right sized road bike will provide this. (im new to road bikes but i know to expect a difference in posture between them and mtbs).
 

AlanW

Maximum Pace
Jan 30, 2007
1,214
434
103
Tokyo
#5
Usually the most important measurement to get right is the (effective) length of the top tube (i.e. measured horizontally from the had tube to the intersection with the seat post). For your height, I expect you would need a 56-58 cm top tube, which would put you on a medium/large or large size Defy. The larger frame size has a longer head tube which will bring the bars up. You can fine-tune the fit with the stem length and rise.

For reference I am 183 cm and my road bike has a 57.5 cm top tube.
 

Phil

Maximum Pace
#6
I have longish legs for my height (not nearly as extreme as you though, 187 cm height, 91-92 cm inside leg), and the problem you will run into is if you do size by top tube you end up with a much larger saddle-to-bar drop than you might want...

General suggestion is to go for "sportive", "relaxed geometry" or whatever the marketers call them; basically something with a shorter top tube relative to head tube height. At your dimensions, there will be nothing relaxed about it, just something closer to a proper fit.

Typical examples are the Spec Roubaix, Cervelo RS, Felt Z series, Look 585 Optimum (last year for these!), and the Defy. Traditional Italian geometry tends to work better too, hence Colnagos, Pinarellos are often a good pick, as opposed to, say, Cannondales which are long and low.

Wiggle's house brand Verenti Rhigos has fantastic geometry:

http://www.wiggle.co.uk/verenti-rhigos03/

The XL would be spot on for you, I bet... (And I see they lowered the price on the full Rival bike to a 1000 pounds??? Argh, I just ordered a different frameset a couple of days ago...!)

A few random thoughts:
- As a bike gets bigger, the handlebars get closer to the saddle, and hence the actual reach does not increase as much as the top tube length suggests.
- Watch out for steep seat tubes! Every degree steeper extends the reach by approx. one centimeter. (Often by sizing down you go to a steeper seat tube, which then pushes the bars out further, closer to the bigger size.)
- In general, and within reason, the bigger bike will be more comfortable, although there are trade-offs and there are lots of folk who find otherwise.

Oh, and watch out for that Competitive Cyclist calculator... The top tube and stem lengths seem about right, but it gives crazy saddle heights and setback for long legged riders.
 

Ludwig

Speeding Up
Oct 9, 2008
871
0
36
Setagaya-ku, Tokyo
#7
I'm 188cm and have three bikes with 60 frames. I forgot what my inseam is, but I'm definitely not short-legged.

I agree with everything that's been said here on what to pay attention to.

I would not order a bike without having test-ridden a few bikes with different geometries and having tried out what feels comfortable - realising though that some things simply take getting used to.

You may not need a bike shop to do this - you could just ask a couple of us tall foreigners in Japan to let you sit on our bikes and find out for yourself what seems to feel good.
 

GSAstuto

Maximum Pace
Oct 11, 2009
945
242
103
tokyo
www.roadfixie.com
#8
I'm thinking something like this might be a good choice. Perfect for long legs and absolutely no 'scrunching'. PLus you have a glorious view of the countryside! Oh - and it comes in a tandem version especially designed for the 'missus'.

proxy.php?image=http%3A%2F%2Fboulderflattireclub.com%2Fwp-content%2Fgallery%2Ftour-de-cure%2Ftall-bike.jpg&hash=84ed98fe204a1158ec6ebcc9e222c56c
 

thegeezer3

Warming-Up
Oct 17, 2010
11
0
0
yokohama
#9
haha not sure the missus would be to hot about it. costume included?

per my earlier post here are my stats from competitive fit - not to sure what they mean by the different fits - not looking ot do racing on the bike.

Measurements
-------------------------------------------
Inseam: 91
Trunk: 61
Forearm: 37
Arm: 65
Thigh: 60
Lower Leg: 59
Sternal Notch: 148
Total Body Height: 180


The Competitive Fit (cm)
-------------------------------------------
Seat tube range c-c: 58.9 - 59.4
Seat tube range c-t: 60.8 - 61.3
Top tube length: 56.0 - 56.4
Stem Length: 11.2 - 11.8
BB-Saddle Position: 87.8 - 89.8
Saddle-Handlebar: 54.1 - 54.7
Saddle Setback: 5.3 - 5.7


The Eddy Fit (cm)
-------------------------------------------
Seat tube range c-c: 60.1 - 60.6
Seat tube range c-t: 62.0 - 62.5
Top tube length: 56.0 - 56.4
Stem Length: 10.1 - 10.7
BB-Saddle Position: 87.0 - 89.0
Saddle-Handlebar: 54.9 - 55.5
Saddle Setback: 6.5 - 6.9


The French Fit (cm)
-------------------------------------------
Seat tube range c-c: 61.8 - 62.3
Seat tube range c-t: 63.7 - 64.2
Top tube length: 57.2 - 57.6
Stem Length: 10.3 - 10.9
BB-Saddle Position: 85.3 - 87.3
Saddle-Handlebar: 56.6 - 57.2
Saddle Setback: 6.0 - 6.4
 

Sikochi

Maximum Pace
Sep 13, 2010
1,141
43
68
Kochi
#10
+1 for what Ludwig says. If this is your first road bike, then ordering one from the internet without being fitted or having test ridden it to see if it you even like how the bike rides/feels is not ideal. With the Defy, it is difficult to advise on fitting as by the way the seat angle changes 73 M/L – 72 L -72.5 XL combined with the top tube changes then these bikes are unlikely to fit proportionately. You really need stack/reach figures to accurately compare sizes which Giant doesn`t provide so I think taking up Ludwig`s kind offer is your best step forwards. Likewise, don`t read too much into the figures Competitive Cyclist`s fit calculator throws up. If you go onto roadbikereview they have a specific Giant forum so you could try searching round there to see if it throws up any information for what similar sized people are riding

http://forums.roadbikereview.com/forumdisplay.php?f=36

If your inseam is that big then you might also have to factor in the cost of swapping the crank out for a larger one. Also, if you are using the bike for commuting, then you need to factor in as well some form of luggage carrier as having a rucksack on your bag on a roadbike for an hour a day 5/6 days a week will likely cause back problems.
 

Phil

Maximum Pace
#11
Oh, and watch out for that Competitive Cyclist calculator... The top tube and stem lengths seem about right, but it gives crazy saddle heights and setback for long legged riders.
Case in point:

According to that output, you are getting saddle height suggestions from 85.3 to 89.8, BB to saddle, and you would need close to a vertical seat tube to achieve that setback. Definitely, definitely ignore those numbers, they are ludicrous. As GSAstuto says, you should be in the 80cm neighborhood for saddle height, and about 8cm to 10cm for setback.

Top tube and stem lengths, and frame size, all look decent, but you won't ever find a stock bike with those measurements.

If you are looking for comfort, then look closer at the frame size recommendation--if you get a stock 56cm top tube bike, you will have a massive drop.

(Just one example of how reach shortens with headtube height, I had a 61cm bike with 59cm top tube and a monster head tube (240cm!) and it had a *shorter* reach than a 57cm top tube with 180cm head tube that I also rode.)
 

GSAstuto

Maximum Pace
Oct 11, 2009
945
242
103
tokyo
www.roadfixie.com
#14
Guys - I think we all have to 'listen' to TG3 - the key points I'm hearing:

1) I felt scrunched over on the bike.
2) I don't want to road race, just ride comfortably.
3) I have an above average inseam length.

Perhaps these are the toughest fits - because, as competitive or enthusiast cyclists, we know that performance will improve when the bike fits a certain ergonomic condition that may or not feel comfortable. In effect - we train ourselves to this position. At first its very uncomfortable, our ass hurts, our shoulders go numb, we can't maintain any kind of comfort on the bike (or what we assume is comfort) for any length of time.

To TG3: Take up some of the guys offers here to sit on their bikes. You will get the feel of a competitive road bike geometry within a reasonable range of your size and be able to say if you want that style / type of bike. Just bear in mind - any bike you buy will take some time to accustom and if you are radically changing your riding style / expectations , it may involve some few days or weeks of muscle discomfort.

You <can> go faster on a road bike - namely because it does work more ergonomically efficient. But you WILL need to train your body to assume that position. Its not something you are just going to jump on and feel super comfy with from the first moment.

If you don't want to take this kind of commitment - then I suggest to buy a more relaxed geometry cycle that is more 'cross' than 'road'. With extended wheelbase and allows for more upright riding position. And, in particular, if you want to maximize the 'long leg short torso' body type - I'd be looking for a 29'er.

Just as typically you need to decrease wheel diameter to make the frame work for shorter people - you can do the same for bigger ones. This is nothing new. So - another option is to check out a 29'er frameset.

Like this -- http://www.marinbikes.com/2010/bike_specs.php?serialnum=933

Just a thought on this ...
 

FarEast

Maximum Pace
May 25, 2009
5,528
538
193
Yokohama
#15
Agreed with everything Tim has said.

Just to build on the training the body issue... .if you looked at my bike at the start of the season and look at it now you will see a huge difference. Saddle further back, hoods slightly lower on the bars; stem flush with the steerer tube.
To most this would be a sort of medieval torture device for me though its optimal positioning to get as much power to the cranks as possible, but my needs are a lot different to most riders.

But you can have a road bike that is more upright “sit up and beg style” through a combination of stem, bar, seat post. Then as your needs and ability change, you can purchase the parts to give you the aerodynamic and power ergonomics needed.

One thing I can guarantee is that within 6 months you will looking at changing the bike to a more aggressive riding position.

Another suggestion is pay for a full fitting, Y's is actually the best option for this I think and will cost about 10,000 Yen. They will set up a rig that fits you perfectly and will actually find your most efficient riding position. They will give you a print out of every dimension you need from Stem length and seat post height to crank length and saddle to stem height.
You can then use this data to buy the perfect ride online.
 

Ludwig

Speeding Up
Oct 9, 2008
871
0
36
Setagaya-ku, Tokyo
#16
I agree with Tim and James. I went straight for a race fitting two years ago because this didn't feel so uncomfortable having ridden drop-bar bikes and nothing else all my life. However, it did take a few months of getting used to the fitting over longer rides. There were so many parts of my body that would start aching, some quite a lot. All of this is gone, except for my lower back problem which I could avoid only by riding pretty much up-right, but that would not be much fun.
 

scandiman

Warming-Up
Aug 12, 2010
96
0
0
Ota-ku
#17
A few free beers or many goo´s coffees

Frode here - a Norwegian living and working in Tokyo. Greetings! I have been around in the forums for a few months but not introduced myself properly. Kudos to you guys for the wealth of information you have put together on this site, very inspiring.

Anyway, a good year ago I bought a Trek for some 60,000 yen. Obviously nothing special but ok for a beginner. Now I am starting to feel seriously uninspired by it (sorry bike) and want to identify something else (150,000-200,000 yen kind of thing). I am basically looking for a couple of people around my height (1.87 cm) with longish legs (inseam 90 cm +) who would let me sit on their bikes. I assume many of you have bikes more expensive than what I am looking for but that does not really matter - it will still give me a bit of an idea. I will buy you a few beers or a lot of coffees in return.

Thanks a lot and have a great weekend out there
 

GSAstuto

Maximum Pace
Oct 11, 2009
945
242
103
tokyo
www.roadfixie.com
#18
This is a bit of a shameless plug - but I've got some good connections directly to Chinese mfg of Titanium bikes and can easily do 100% custom builds. My first frame is arriving in Tokyo sometime in the next few days and I'll be very interested to see the results of this (remote design). I have been through the factory, btw - and also have staff member there to help with liaison. Could be an interesting solution to hard to fit riders. I'm not really looking at this for serious biz - but rather just fulfill a need within the local cycling community. (i.e. I really wanted a Ti custom bike and did not want to pay 300,000+ for it)
 

Phil

Maximum Pace
#19
Hi scandiman, welcome to the forums. I'm pretty close to exactly the same dimensions as you. If you're ever out Chiba way you're more than welcome to give my bikes a test ride. I have two that are fitted a bit differently, one larger than the other, plus a third on the way. None of them expensive :)
 
Jul 13, 2010
279
6
38
Shinjuku
#20
Frode here - a Norwegian living and working in Tokyo. Greetings! I have been around in the forums for a few months but not introduced myself properly. Kudos to you guys for the wealth of information you have put together on this site, very inspiring.

Anyway, a good year ago I bought a Trek for some 60,000 yen. Obviously nothing special but ok for a beginner. Now I am starting to feel seriously uninspired by it (sorry bike) and want to identify something else (150,000-200,000 yen kind of thing). I am basically looking for a couple of people around my height (1.87 cm) with longish legs (inseam 90 cm +) who would let me sit on their bikes. I assume many of you have bikes more expensive than what I am looking for but that does not really matter - it will still give me a bit of an idea. I will buy you a few beers or a lot of coffees in return.

Thanks a lot and have a great weekend out there
Hi Frode,
I have a Focus Cayo in size 60cm that you are welcome to try. I live in Sazazuka.

/Andreas