Another sizing question.....

guvnor299 Posts: 15
edited September 2007 in Road beginners

I have just received my Focus Variado today - It's a size small which equates to a 54cm frame.

I am 5'8" tall with a inseam of 31".... I can get a position on the bike but only with a few inches of the seat post showing, very unlike the photo on the wiggle site where the seat post is a good bit taller... When I am sat on the bike I cannot touch the floor - Should I be able to?

I am thinking that maybe I should return the bike and get the XS size which has a 52cm seat tube (C-T), the top tube would be 54.2 compared to my current of 54.8. Reach aint really a problem thou...

Any help and advice would be great... I've had a bike that was too small in the past; I dont want to make a similar mistake again!

So, The small with hardly no seatpost or the extra small and a canny bit showing?

Many thanks! :)


  • depends on other factors too. What is the difference in the "effective" top tube in order to see the difference in reach. Also consider the drop to the handlebars. Presumably with the small, the handlebars will be higher up in relation to the sadle (as your saddle is comparitively low) whereas with the extra small the bars are going to be lower in relation to the saddle as the saddle is comparitively high. Spacers will enable you to change this but only within small constraints.
  • I am exactly your height and leg length. I think the 54 is about right - some things to consider -

    Stand over the bike astride the top tube - is there any clearance between the top tube and your, err, bits? If there is non, this points to it being possibly slightly large. If 1" to 2" this indicates "about right".

    Sit on saddle, HEEL on pedal and set the saddle height so your leg is dead straight. Move your foot to the normal position, you should have a slight bend in the leg when pedalling normally. Is the saddle still low down?

    On none of my bikes can I touch the floor when seated with more than a tiptoe, I have to straddle the top tube at lights etc.

    Reach is more important to get right than height, if you have some standover (say 1/2" min) I would go with the bike you have and set up the height with stems, seatpost etc.

    Hope this helps.
  • saif
    saif Posts: 100

    I've similar hieght and when I was looking for the bike with the right size , I had similar issues , I finally settled with a Bianchi 53 cm.. which fits well and the saddle is at a decent height. Depends if you get odd sizes in the Focus too , its worth trying.
  • Many thanks for the replies...

    I've just had another look and I've got about an inch of standover height.. I'll try and take some photos for you all to see...

    Now I'm thinking of keeping the 54.. Erm... I dunno! Confused as ever!
  • Bugly
    Bugly Posts: 520
    first rule of thumb if you can slip two fingers between you and the top tube when standing over the frame in your riding shoes, the top tube height is right.

    Second rule of thumb adjust the seat hght such that you can back peddle the bike with heels on the pedals without rocking from side to side.

    third rule of thumb with the cranks in the 3 and 9 o’clock position , the saddle is correctly positioned when your tibial tuberosity (the bump at the top of the shin bone) is 1cm behind the pedal axle.

    fourth rule of thumb when riding on the drops the axle of the front wheel should be obscured by the handlebars.

    fifth rule that the handlebars should be about an inch to an inch and half below the seat.

    Final rule from me adjust your cleats so you are slightly toed in towards the bike with both feet to reduce knee strain, Feet straight in line places strain on most peoples knees and splayed outwards should be avoided.

    Use these to get a starting position and adjust from there.