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Beginner struggle - Mountain bike size

OnoOno Posts: 30
edited April 2013 in MTB buying advice
Hi there!
I am planning to buy a mountain bike in the next couple of days. I have been looking around for a few weeks and after a few test rides, finally decided to go with the FUJI NEVADA 1.0 2012 (also because it has a 40% discount now).
My problem is that I seem to be between two sizes. I am 6' tall and 33.5'' inseam length. I got contradictory information from two different branches of the shop where I am going to buy it. Two of the guys told me to go for the 21' and another one said that I should go for the 19'. I have tried them both and they feel slightly different but ok (though, to be honest, I don't know very well what to look at when going for a test ride).
A fourth person mentioned that FUJI measurements are slightly smaller than other manufacturers and that, therefore, I should probably go for the bigger one. Their website shows 5cm (obviously, 2 inches') difference in the seat tube length but only 3cm for the effective top tube length and wheelbase.
Any help with this or ideas, comments, etc. are more that welcome! I am going a bit crazy with this and do not even know if this is that important. All I know is that I would like start riding asap (I am quite excited about it!).

PS. Sorry if what I am saying makes no sense or I am leaving something important aside, as I said I am a complete beginner.


  • OnoOno Posts: 30
    Here are the measurements of the bike: ... vada%201.0

  • supersonicsupersonic Posts: 82,708 Lives Here
    Unless you have long arms for your size, stick with the 19.

    How much are you paying? it is not a very good bike.
  • OnoOno Posts: 30
    I am paying £500 (reduced from original £800). I checked components and they look better than other options on that price range. Any alternatives?
    My arms are slightly bended in both bikes. I found the 21 a bit more comfortable (less pressure on my wrists) but that might be just that I am not used to it at all.
  • supersonicsupersonic Posts: 82,708 Lives Here
    £500 is ok, but it is pretty heavy still.

    For slightly more there is this: ... 68918.html

    Much better fork, lighter, better disc brakes.
  • OnoOno Posts: 30
    Thanks! I hadn't seen that one! I will have a look at it tomorrow.
    In relation to the size, is it normal to feel more comfortable on the bigger bike (test ride was pretty short - 15 mins - and around the city - no off road riding? should I stick to the smaller frame anyway?
  • supersonicsupersonic Posts: 82,708 Lives Here
    Is what feels best - different manufacturers can be wildly different in size anyway.
  • The RookieThe Rookie Posts: 27,777
    Lots of things to consider, including the space to move a bike around underneath you.

    Strange spec on that bike, poor fork with much better divetrain.

    Consider also the Voodoo Hoodoo at Halfords, not quite as good as the RR 8.1 though.
    Current steed - Whyte T129, 2013 frame, mongrel Revelations, Giant dropper, Stans S1 wheelset. 12, Magura Trail Sport brakes, 1x11. 12.8Kg
  • OnoOno Posts: 30
    Thanks for all the comments guys.
    I also saw this size chart from Evans Cycles. I am 6' and fall into both bikes... ... /588/fuji- nevada-sizing-chart.pdf

    I have no idea on how to interpret the rest of the geometry figures but this is what I found in the Fuji website: ... vada%201.0

    I'll get down there again tomorrow and try the 19'' once more. When I did last week I felt more pressure on my wrists on the smaller one than on the 21''. Is that normal?
    Is there an estimate distance recommended between the knee when it is at 45 degrees position and the handlebar?
    How can I know if I am cramped on the bike if I only have 15 mins for a test ride? What should I be looking at?
  • The RookieThe Rookie Posts: 27,777
    Personally I think a 21" will be too big, always better to be half a size too small than one too big.

    I'd expect you to feel more weight on your wrists on a larger frame as you lean further forward, however the bars may be slightly lower on the smaller bike., weight on your arms is normal on an MTB, you need weight on the front wheel for grip.
    Current steed - Whyte T129, 2013 frame, mongrel Revelations, Giant dropper, Stans S1 wheelset. 12, Magura Trail Sport brakes, 1x11. 12.8Kg
  • LJ.LJ. Posts: 149
    Hi you can get the Boardman Comp for £526 at the moment ... yId_165499
    Quidco 10% off all bikes code takes it down to £526 code~: A13AB03
  • OnoOno Posts: 30
    And the Trek 6300 in 19.5'' ... duct/41047

    any ideas between the Boardman and the Trek?
  • LJ.LJ. Posts: 149
    They are both decent but there is £125 price difference, you sure 19.5" wouldn't be a bit big for you?
  • OnoOno Posts: 30
    Hi LJ! I went down to try the 17.5'' (slightly short) and the 19.5' (felt all right but much roomier). They ordered the 18.5'' that will come next week. In case that I am still doubting which one would you go for?
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