Re: Interpreting Serotta Fit Cycle Data For Other Manufacturers?

Discussion in 'Cycling Equipment' started by Jay Beattie, Mar 28, 2005.

  1. Jay Beattie

    Jay Beattie Guest

    "Steve Sr." <[email protected]> wrote in message
    news:[email protected]
    > I am in the market for a new high-end road bike so I decided it

    would
    > be a good idea to get a professional fit done first to figure

    out what
    > bikes would fit and which wouldn't. See, I have been listening

    to you
    > folks all these years!
    >
    > The best local fitting service that I could find was one

    offered by a
    > local shop that sold Serotta and used the Serotta Fit Cycle.

    Before
    > the fitting I told the shop that Serotta was on my list of

    possible
    > candidates along with several other manufacturers and that I

    would
    > need results that would be applicable to makes other than

    Serotta. I
    > was told that this would not be a problem.
    >
    > The basic results of the fitting is that I have the loss of
    > flexibility related to aging (I'm 48 and 160 Lbs.) and that I

    needed a
    > bike with a higher front end and slightly shorter top tube.

    This
    > information ruled out the Litespeed Tuscany as a problem in

    both of
    > these areas.
    >
    > After the fitting the shop suggested a Serotta Fierte and a

    full
    > carbon Trek Pilot. I also mentioned that Litespeed was on my

    list of
    > possible makes and asked what Litespeed other than Tuscany

    would fit.
    >
    > Here is where the issue begins. The fitter said that the

    Litespeed
    > Siena would probably fit but couldn't provide specifics since

    he
    > didn't have data from Litespeed in the same for as Serotta to

    input
    > into his computer program.
    >
    > So do I need a PhD in bike fitting to interpret the numbers

    from the
    > Fit Cycle or is there a straight forward procedure to determine

    how
    > close a certain manufacturers bike will match the fit data.
    >
    > The questions that need answered are:
    >
    > 1. Which frame size is needed (53 or 55cm)? A 53cm gives the

    shorter
    > top tube but with a taller seat post effectively lowers the

    front of
    > the bike. A 55cm does just the opposite.
    >
    > 2. Will the seat post need to be straight or setback? This also

    will
    > play into the correct stem length.
    >
    > 3. What is the correct angle and length of the stem?
    >
    > Can anyone enlighten me?


    Man, you make my head a-splode! All the data you need (seat
    angle and top tube length) is available at the Litespeed
    web-site.
    http://www.litespeed.com/bikes/2005/2005geometry.aspx?b=siena .
    You paid for the professional fitting, just get the data, take it
    back to your fit guru and re-run the numbers. Assuming you are
    not built like E.T. -- and assuming you do not buy a bike with a
    notoriously top tube (e.g. LeMond), everything is about the same
    these days. Most fit changes are accomplished with stems and
    seatposts. As for me, I would go with the larger frame to avoid
    the leggy seat post and unsightly stem rise, but then again, I am
    a conventional frame kind of guy. I hate compacts. I don't
    think the 20mm difference in top-tube between the 53 and 55cm
    frames is going to make much of a difference.

    Also, you do not want to buy a short top-tube bike just because
    you are inflexible (as opposed to having a short upper body).
    Flexibility changes, especially if you actually ride this bike --
    which you should, since it looks like you are going to dump a lot
    of money on it. Get an appropriate stem that deals with your
    current inflexibility and then change it when you get more
    flexible. I am your age and ride a bike with a longer top
    tube/stem than the one I raced 25 years ago. I know I am not
    more flexible now, but I seem to like being stretched out
    ore. -- Jay Beattie.
     
    Tags:


  2. Bob M

    Bob M Guest

    On Mon, 28 Mar 2005 18:08:18 -0800, Jay Beattie <[email protected]>
    wrote:

    >
    > "Steve Sr." <[email protected]> wrote in message
    > news:[email protected]
    >> I am in the market for a new high-end road bike so I decided it

    > would
    >> be a good idea to get a professional fit done first to figure

    > out what
    >> bikes would fit and which wouldn't. See, I have been listening

    > to you
    >> folks all these years!
    >>
    >> The best local fitting service that I could find was one

    > offered by a
    >> local shop that sold Serotta and used the Serotta Fit Cycle.

    > Before
    >> the fitting I told the shop that Serotta was on my list of

    > possible
    >> candidates along with several other manufacturers and that I

    > would
    >> need results that would be applicable to makes other than

    > Serotta. I
    >> was told that this would not be a problem.
    >>
    >> The basic results of the fitting is that I have the loss of
    >> flexibility related to aging (I'm 48 and 160 Lbs.) and that I

    > needed a
    >> bike with a higher front end and slightly shorter top tube.

    > This
    >> information ruled out the Litespeed Tuscany as a problem in

    > both of
    >> these areas.
    >>
    >> After the fitting the shop suggested a Serotta Fierte and a

    > full
    >> carbon Trek Pilot. I also mentioned that Litespeed was on my

    > list of
    >> possible makes and asked what Litespeed other than Tuscany

    > would fit.
    >>
    >> Here is where the issue begins. The fitter said that the

    > Litespeed
    >> Siena would probably fit but couldn't provide specifics since

    > he
    >> didn't have data from Litespeed in the same for as Serotta to

    > input
    >> into his computer program.
    >>
    >> So do I need a PhD in bike fitting to interpret the numbers

    > from the
    >> Fit Cycle or is there a straight forward procedure to determine

    > how
    >> close a certain manufacturers bike will match the fit data.
    >>
    >> The questions that need answered are:
    >>
    >> 1. Which frame size is needed (53 or 55cm)? A 53cm gives the

    > shorter
    >> top tube but with a taller seat post effectively lowers the

    > front of
    >> the bike. A 55cm does just the opposite.
    >>
    >> 2. Will the seat post need to be straight or setback? This also

    > will
    >> play into the correct stem length.
    >>
    >> 3. What is the correct angle and length of the stem?
    >>
    >> Can anyone enlighten me?

    >
    > Man, you make my head a-splode! All the data you need (seat
    > angle and top tube length) is available at the Litespeed
    > web-site.
    > http://www.litespeed.com/bikes/2005/2005geometry.aspx?b=siena .
    > You paid for the professional fitting, just get the data, take it
    > back to your fit guru and re-run the numbers. Assuming you are
    > not built like E.T. -- and assuming you do not buy a bike with a
    > notoriously top tube (e.g. LeMond), everything is about the same
    > these days. Most fit changes are accomplished with stems and
    > seatposts. As for me, I would go with the larger frame to avoid
    > the leggy seat post and unsightly stem rise, but then again, I am
    > a conventional frame kind of guy. I hate compacts. I don't
    > think the 20mm difference in top-tube between the 53 and 55cm
    > frames is going to make much of a difference.
    >
    > Also, you do not want to buy a short top-tube bike just because
    > you are inflexible (as opposed to having a short upper body).
    > Flexibility changes, especially if you actually ride this bike --
    > which you should, since it looks like you are going to dump a lot
    > of money on it. Get an appropriate stem that deals with your
    > current inflexibility and then change it when you get more
    > flexible. I am your age and ride a bike with a longer top
    > tube/stem than the one I raced 25 years ago. I know I am not
    > more flexible now, but I seem to like being stretched out
    > ore. -- Jay Beattie.
    >
    >


    Can you ride any of these bikes? I bought a LeMond because of the
    supposedly long top tube, but I still ended up changing the stem by 10mm.

    --
    Bob in CT
     
  3. Jay Beattie

    Jay Beattie Guest

    "Bob M" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    news:eek:[email protected]
    > On Mon, 28 Mar 2005 18:08:18 -0800, Jay Beattie

    <[email protected]>
    > wrote:
    >
    > >
    > > "Steve Sr." <[email protected]> wrote in message
    > > news:[email protected]
    > >> I am in the market for a new high-end road bike so I decided

    it
    > > would
    > >> be a good idea to get a professional fit done first to

    figure
    > > out what
    > >> bikes would fit and which wouldn't. See, I have been

    listening
    > > to you
    > >> folks all these years!
    > >>
    > >> The best local fitting service that I could find was one

    > > offered by a
    > >> local shop that sold Serotta and used the Serotta Fit Cycle.

    > > Before
    > >> the fitting I told the shop that Serotta was on my list of

    > > possible
    > >> candidates along with several other manufacturers and that I

    > > would
    > >> need results that would be applicable to makes other than

    > > Serotta. I
    > >> was told that this would not be a problem.
    > >>
    > >> The basic results of the fitting is that I have the loss of
    > >> flexibility related to aging (I'm 48 and 160 Lbs.) and that

    I
    > > needed a
    > >> bike with a higher front end and slightly shorter top tube.

    > > This
    > >> information ruled out the Litespeed Tuscany as a problem in

    > > both of
    > >> these areas.
    > >>
    > >> After the fitting the shop suggested a Serotta Fierte and a

    > > full
    > >> carbon Trek Pilot. I also mentioned that Litespeed was on my

    > > list of
    > >> possible makes and asked what Litespeed other than Tuscany

    > > would fit.
    > >>
    > >> Here is where the issue begins. The fitter said that the

    > > Litespeed
    > >> Siena would probably fit but couldn't provide specifics

    since
    > > he
    > >> didn't have data from Litespeed in the same for as Serotta

    to
    > > input
    > >> into his computer program.
    > >>
    > >> So do I need a PhD in bike fitting to interpret the numbers

    > > from the
    > >> Fit Cycle or is there a straight forward procedure to

    determine
    > > how
    > >> close a certain manufacturers bike will match the fit data.
    > >>
    > >> The questions that need answered are:
    > >>
    > >> 1. Which frame size is needed (53 or 55cm)? A 53cm gives the

    > > shorter
    > >> top tube but with a taller seat post effectively lowers the

    > > front of
    > >> the bike. A 55cm does just the opposite.
    > >>
    > >> 2. Will the seat post need to be straight or setback? This

    also
    > > will
    > >> play into the correct stem length.
    > >>
    > >> 3. What is the correct angle and length of the stem?
    > >>
    > >> Can anyone enlighten me?

    > >
    > > Man, you make my head a-splode! All the data you need (seat
    > > angle and top tube length) is available at the Litespeed
    > > web-site.
    > > http://www.litespeed.com/bikes/2005/2005geometry.aspx?b=siena

    ..
    > > You paid for the professional fitting, just get the data,

    take it
    > > back to your fit guru and re-run the numbers. Assuming you

    are
    > > not built like E.T. -- and assuming you do not buy a bike

    with a
    > > notoriously top tube (e.g. LeMond), everything is about the

    same
    > > these days. Most fit changes are accomplished with stems and
    > > seatposts. As for me, I would go with the larger frame to

    avoid
    > > the leggy seat post and unsightly stem rise, but then again,

    I am
    > > a conventional frame kind of guy. I hate compacts. I don't
    > > think the 20mm difference in top-tube between the 53 and 55cm
    > > frames is going to make much of a difference.
    > >
    > > Also, you do not want to buy a short top-tube bike just

    because
    > > you are inflexible (as opposed to having a short upper body).
    > > Flexibility changes, especially if you actually ride this

    bike --
    > > which you should, since it looks like you are going to dump a

    lot
    > > of money on it. Get an appropriate stem that deals with your
    > > current inflexibility and then change it when you get more
    > > flexible. I am your age and ride a bike with a longer top
    > > tube/stem than the one I raced 25 years ago. I know I am not
    > > more flexible now, but I seem to like being stretched out
    > > ore. -- Jay Beattie.
    > >
    > >

    >
    > Can you ride any of these bikes? I bought a LeMond because of

    the
    > supposedly long top tube, but I still ended up changing the

    stem by 10mm.

    10mm is a relatively small amount, though, and pretty close for
    an off-the-rack bicycle. It seems to me that racing frame top
    tubes have actually gotten longer in the last 30 years -- for
    example, the Litespeed Ultimate has a 61cm top tube in the 63cm
    size (my size -- not my bike, though). Back in the day, it was
    not uncommon to see a 63cm frame with a 59cm top tube, or even
    slightly shorter. The current Colnago Dream, for example, has
    58.7cm top tube in the 63cm size. This was the Italian way of
    building large bikes -- just make them taller. I commute on an
    old, custom steel (SP) racing frame with about a 58.5 top tube,
    which is too short even with a 130mm stem. But I have only
    myself to blame since I was the one who (mis)cut that tube. --
    Jay Beattie.
     
  4. Bob M

    Bob M Guest

    On Tue, 29 Mar 2005 10:41:59 -0800, Jay Beattie <[email protected]>
    wrote:

    >
    > "Bob M" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    > news:eek:[email protected]

    [cut]
    >>
    >> Can you ride any of these bikes? I bought a LeMond because of

    > the
    >> supposedly long top tube, but I still ended up changing the

    > stem by 10mm.
    >
    > 10mm is a relatively small amount, though, and pretty close for
    > an off-the-rack bicycle. It seems to me that racing frame top
    > tubes have actually gotten longer in the last 30 years -- for
    > example, the Litespeed Ultimate has a 61cm top tube in the 63cm
    > size (my size -- not my bike, though). Back in the day, it was
    > not uncommon to see a 63cm frame with a 59cm top tube, or even
    > slightly shorter. The current Colnago Dream, for example, has
    > 58.7cm top tube in the 63cm size. This was the Italian way of
    > building large bikes -- just make them taller. I commute on an
    > old, custom steel (SP) racing frame with about a 58.5 top tube,
    > which is too short even with a 130mm stem. But I have only
    > myself to blame since I was the one who (mis)cut that tube. --
    > Jay Beattie.
    >
    >


    That's true. My LeMond replaced a Trek, which I couldn't stand after a
    while due to the shortish top tube (meaning I could never get proper
    positioning -- even with a "set back" seatpost -- over the pedals). On
    the LeMond, I went from a 110 to a 130 mm stem -- oops! That's 20mm, 2cm,
    not 10 mm. That's almost an inch (and that's with a set back seatpost
    that came standard on the LeMond).

    --
    Bob in CT
     
  5. Jay Beattie

    Jay Beattie Guest

    "Steve Sr." <[email protected]> wrote in message
    news:[email protected]
    > On Mon, 28 Mar 2005 18:08:18 -0800, "Jay Beattie"
    > <[email protected]> wrote:
    >
    > >
    > >"Steve Sr." <[email protected]> wrote in message
    > >news:[email protected]
    > >> I am in the market for a new high-end road bike so I decided

    it
    > >would
    > >> be a good idea to get a professional fit done first to

    figure
    > >out what
    > >> bikes would fit and which wouldn't. See, I have been

    listening
    > >to you
    > >> folks all these years!
    > >>
    > >> The best local fitting service that I could find was one

    > >offered by a
    > >> local shop that sold Serotta and used the Serotta Fit Cycle.

    > >Before
    > >> the fitting I told the shop that Serotta was on my list of

    > >possible
    > >> candidates along with several other manufacturers and that I

    > >would
    > >> need results that would be applicable to makes other than

    > >Serotta. I
    > >> was told that this would not be a problem.
    > >>
    > >> The basic results of the fitting is that I have the loss of
    > >> flexibility related to aging (I'm 48 and 160 Lbs.) and that

    I
    > >needed a
    > >> bike with a higher front end and slightly shorter top tube.

    > >This
    > >> information ruled out the Litespeed Tuscany as a problem in

    > >both of
    > >> these areas.
    > >>
    > >> After the fitting the shop suggested a Serotta Fierte and a

    > >full
    > >> carbon Trek Pilot. I also mentioned that Litespeed was on my

    > >list of
    > >> possible makes and asked what Litespeed other than Tuscany

    > >would fit.
    > >>
    > >> Here is where the issue begins. The fitter said that the

    > >Litespeed
    > >> Siena would probably fit but couldn't provide specifics

    since
    > >he
    > >> didn't have data from Litespeed in the same for as Serotta

    to
    > >input
    > >> into his computer program.
    > >>
    > >> So do I need a PhD in bike fitting to interpret the numbers

    > >from the
    > >> Fit Cycle or is there a straight forward procedure to

    determine
    > >how
    > >> close a certain manufacturers bike will match the fit data.
    > >>
    > >> The questions that need answered are:
    > >>
    > >> 1. Which frame size is needed (53 or 55cm)? A 53cm gives the

    > >shorter
    > >> top tube but with a taller seat post effectively lowers the

    > >front of
    > >> the bike. A 55cm does just the opposite.
    > >>
    > >> 2. Will the seat post need to be straight or setback? This

    also
    > >will
    > >> play into the correct stem length.
    > >>
    > >> 3. What is the correct angle and length of the stem?
    > >>
    > >> Can anyone enlighten me?

    > >
    > >Man, you make my head a-splode! All the data you need (seat
    > >angle and top tube length) is available at the Litespeed
    > >web-site.
    > >http://www.litespeed.com/bikes/2005/2005geometry.aspx?b=siena

    ..
    >
    > Yes, the Litespeed data is all there but how to match it up

    with the
    > measurements from the Fit Cycle is the issue.
    >
    > >You paid for the professional fitting, just get the data, take

    it
    > >back to your fit guru and re-run the numbers.

    >
    > Yes, I need to do this but the fit guy works hours that I can't

    make
    > without loosing at least 3 hours of work so communication has

    been
    > difficult.
    >
    > > Assuming you are
    > >not built like E.T. -- and assuming you do not buy a bike with

    a
    > >notoriously top tube (e.g. LeMond), everything is about the

    same
    > >these days. Most fit changes are accomplished with stems and
    > >seatposts. As for me, I would go with the larger frame to

    avoid
    > >the leggy seat post and unsightly stem rise, but then again, I

    am
    > >a conventional frame kind of guy.

    >
    > However, this will cause the top tube to be considerably too

    long.
    > The final adjustments on the Fit Cycle had it set for a 55/55

    but with
    > an unrealistically short 70mm stem.
    >
    > > I hate compacts.

    >
    > So just what charactistics describe "compact" geometry. I

    thought it
    > was just a sloped top tube to allow the manufacturer to fit

    more
    > people with fewer stock frame sizes?
    >
    > > I don't
    > >think the 20mm difference in top-tube between the 53 and 55cm
    > >frames is going to make much of a difference.

    >
    > That is almost an inch which seems significant.


    Go to the Litespeed page and look at how they size their compact
    frames. http://www.litespeed.com/bikes/2005/sizing.aspx This
    will also show you the difference between a conventional and
    compact frame. I agree with you that 20mm is significant. In a
    smaller compact, however (a 53cm v. 55cm) the difference may not
    be that significant depending on the seat tube angle of the
    smaller frame and the seat post extension (and increased set
    back). A small frame may have a shorter "virtual top tube" but
    if there is a lot of post showing, you may get stretched out just
    as far as a larger frame -- and you certainly will drop a lot
    more, unless you get a stem with rise. Someone smarter than me
    needs to run the numbers because it involves tangents, cosigns
    and all that stuff that hurts my brain to think about. Even on a
    conventional frame, 20mm can be taken up with a stem length
    adjustment, assuming that you are not at the limits and it does
    not put you in an odd place in relationship to the steering axis.


    > >
    > >Also, you do not want to buy a short top-tube bike just

    because
    > >you are inflexible (as opposed to having a short upper body).

    >
    > I don't know if it is flexibility or short torso but I like to

    see
    > where I'm going and my neck doesn't bend back far enough to

    allow me
    > to comfortably stay on the hoods or drops for extended

    intervals
    > without a sore neck.
    >
    > >Flexibility changes, especially if you actually ride this

    bike --
    > >which you should, since it looks like you are going to dump a

    lot
    > >of money on it. Get an appropriate stem that deals with your
    > >current inflexibility and then change it when you get more
    > >flexible. I am your age and ride a bike with a longer top
    > >tube/stem than the one I raced 25 years ago. I know I am not
    > >more flexible now, but I seem to like being stretched out
    > >ore. -- Jay Beattie.
    > >

    >
    > I think my inflexibility is probably more severe than most and
    > hereditary in nature. I know there is no way my flexibility has
    > improved with aging.
    >
    > Anyway, My current ride is a 53 cm 2000 Cannondale T2000. The

    seat
    > post is kind of high and the seat has to be set all the way

    back in
    > the rails for my knee to line up correctly over the spindle.

    This is
    > also with a Thomson set back seatpost.
    >
    > The top tube on this bike is kind of long at 54cm (measured).

    It
    > currently has a 110mm stem and angle of about 125-130 degrees

    from
    > horizontal. The stem is sitting on top of 3 (3/4") of spacers.
    >
    > With this currrent setup there is too much pressure on my hands
    > (numbness) while on the drops and can't really use the drops at

    all if
    > I want to see where I'm going.
    >
    > It is begining to look like I need a 55cm seat tube to make my

    legs
    > fit and a 53 cm top tube to make the top of my body happy. So

    far I
    > haven't found this combination.


    You obviously have fit issues beyond those of the average
    consumer. One thing you might try on your Cannondale is a
    shorter stem with more rise. This would be a low-cost way of
    finding out exactly what makes you happy. This is how I handle
    fit: fiddle the hell out of my racing bike and then transfer all
    of the dimensions to my other bikes, if possible. The "possible"
    part comes in where the other frame has a top tube that is too
    short or too long, and changing the stem has a dramatic affect on
    steering. Again, I am a tall rider and like longer top tubes --
    which appears to be the way the market is trending these days. --
    Jay Beattie.
     
  6. Jay Beattie

    Jay Beattie Guest

    "Steve Sr." <[email protected]> wrote in message
    news:[email protected]
    > On Mon, 28 Mar 2005 18:08:18 -0800, "Jay Beattie"
    > <[email protected]> wrote:
    >
    > >
    > >"Steve Sr." <[email protected]> wrote in message
    > >news:[email protected]
    > >> I am in the market for a new high-end road bike so I decided

    it
    > >would
    > >> be a good idea to get a professional fit done first to

    figure
    > >out what
    > >> bikes would fit and which wouldn't. See, I have been

    listening
    > >to you
    > >> folks all these years!
    > >>
    > >> The best local fitting service that I could find was one

    > >offered by a
    > >> local shop that sold Serotta and used the Serotta Fit Cycle.

    > >Before
    > >> the fitting I told the shop that Serotta was on my list of

    > >possible
    > >> candidates along with several other manufacturers and that I

    > >would
    > >> need results that would be applicable to makes other than

    > >Serotta. I
    > >> was told that this would not be a problem.
    > >>
    > >> The basic results of the fitting is that I have the loss of
    > >> flexibility related to aging (I'm 48 and 160 Lbs.) and that

    I
    > >needed a
    > >> bike with a higher front end and slightly shorter top tube.

    > >This
    > >> information ruled out the Litespeed Tuscany as a problem in

    > >both of
    > >> these areas.
    > >>
    > >> After the fitting the shop suggested a Serotta Fierte and a

    > >full
    > >> carbon Trek Pilot. I also mentioned that Litespeed was on my

    > >list of
    > >> possible makes and asked what Litespeed other than Tuscany

    > >would fit.
    > >>
    > >> Here is where the issue begins. The fitter said that the

    > >Litespeed
    > >> Siena would probably fit but couldn't provide specifics

    since
    > >he
    > >> didn't have data from Litespeed in the same for as Serotta

    to
    > >input
    > >> into his computer program.
    > >>
    > >> So do I need a PhD in bike fitting to interpret the numbers

    > >from the
    > >> Fit Cycle or is there a straight forward procedure to

    determine
    > >how
    > >> close a certain manufacturers bike will match the fit data.
    > >>
    > >> The questions that need answered are:
    > >>
    > >> 1. Which frame size is needed (53 or 55cm)? A 53cm gives the

    > >shorter
    > >> top tube but with a taller seat post effectively lowers the

    > >front of
    > >> the bike. A 55cm does just the opposite.
    > >>
    > >> 2. Will the seat post need to be straight or setback? This

    also
    > >will
    > >> play into the correct stem length.
    > >>
    > >> 3. What is the correct angle and length of the stem?
    > >>
    > >> Can anyone enlighten me?

    > >
    > >Man, you make my head a-splode! All the data you need (seat
    > >angle and top tube length) is available at the Litespeed
    > >web-site.
    > >http://www.litespeed.com/bikes/2005/2005geometry.aspx?b=siena

    ..
    >
    > Yes, the Litespeed data is all there but how to match it up

    with the
    > measurements from the Fit Cycle is the issue.
    >
    > >You paid for the professional fitting, just get the data, take

    it
    > >back to your fit guru and re-run the numbers.

    >
    > Yes, I need to do this but the fit guy works hours that I can't

    make
    > without loosing at least 3 hours of work so communication has

    been
    > difficult.
    >
    > > Assuming you are
    > >not built like E.T. -- and assuming you do not buy a bike with

    a
    > >notoriously top tube (e.g. LeMond), everything is about the

    same
    > >these days. Most fit changes are accomplished with stems and
    > >seatposts. As for me, I would go with the larger frame to

    avoid
    > >the leggy seat post and unsightly stem rise, but then again, I

    am
    > >a conventional frame kind of guy.

    >
    > However, this will cause the top tube to be considerably too

    long.
    > The final adjustments on the Fit Cycle had it set for a 55/55

    but with
    > an unrealistically short 70mm stem.
    >
    > > I hate compacts.

    >
    > So just what charactistics describe "compact" geometry. I

    thought it
    > was just a sloped top tube to allow the manufacturer to fit

    more
    > people with fewer stock frame sizes?
    >
    > > I don't
    > >think the 20mm difference in top-tube between the 53 and 55cm
    > >frames is going to make much of a difference.

    >
    > That is almost an inch which seems significant.


    Go to the Litespeed page and look at how they size their compact
    frames. http://www.litespeed.com/bikes/2005/sizing.aspx This
    will also show you the difference between a conventional and
    compact frame. I agree with you that 20mm is significant. In a
    smaller compact, however (a 53cm v. 55cm) the difference may not
    be that significant depending on the seat tube angle of the
    smaller frame and the seat post extension (and increased set
    back). A small frame may have a shorter "virtual top tube" but
    if there is a lot of post showing, you may get stretched out just
    as far as a larger frame -- and you certainly will drop a lot
    more, unless you get a stem with rise. Someone smarter than me
    needs to run the numbers because it involves tangents, cosigns
    and all that stuff that hurts my brain to think about. Even on a
    conventional frame, 20mm can be taken up with a stem length
    adjustment, assuming that you are not at the limits and it does
    not put you in an odd place in relationship to the steering axis.


    > >
    > >Also, you do not want to buy a short top-tube bike just

    because
    > >you are inflexible (as opposed to having a short upper body).

    >
    > I don't know if it is flexibility or short torso but I like to

    see
    > where I'm going and my neck doesn't bend back far enough to

    allow me
    > to comfortably stay on the hoods or drops for extended

    intervals
    > without a sore neck.
    >
    > >Flexibility changes, especially if you actually ride this

    bike --
    > >which you should, since it looks like you are going to dump a

    lot
    > >of money on it. Get an appropriate stem that deals with your
    > >current inflexibility and then change it when you get more
    > >flexible. I am your age and ride a bike with a longer top
    > >tube/stem than the one I raced 25 years ago. I know I am not
    > >more flexible now, but I seem to like being stretched out
    > >ore. -- Jay Beattie.
    > >

    >
    > I think my inflexibility is probably more severe than most and
    > hereditary in nature. I know there is no way my flexibility has
    > improved with aging.
    >
    > Anyway, My current ride is a 53 cm 2000 Cannondale T2000. The

    seat
    > post is kind of high and the seat has to be set all the way

    back in
    > the rails for my knee to line up correctly over the spindle.

    This is
    > also with a Thomson set back seatpost.
    >
    > The top tube on this bike is kind of long at 54cm (measured).

    It
    > currently has a 110mm stem and angle of about 125-130 degrees

    from
    > horizontal. The stem is sitting on top of 3 (3/4") of spacers.
    >
    > With this currrent setup there is too much pressure on my hands
    > (numbness) while on the drops and can't really use the drops at

    all if
    > I want to see where I'm going.
    >
    > It is begining to look like I need a 55cm seat tube to make my

    legs
    > fit and a 53 cm top tube to make the top of my body happy. So

    far I
    > haven't found this combination.


    You obviously have fit issues beyond those of the average
    consumer. One thing you might try on your Cannondale is a
    shorter stem with more rise. This would be a low-cost way of
    finding out exactly what makes you happy. This is how I handle
    fit: fiddle the hell out of my racing bike and then transfer all
    of the dimensions to my other bikes, if possible. The "possible"
    part comes in where the other frame has a top tube that is too
    short or too long, and changing the stem has a dramatic affect on
    steering. Again, I am a tall rider and like longer top tubes --
    which appears to be the way the market is trending these days. --
    Jay Beattie.
     
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