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How important is frame size?

  • 18-07-2022 10:37am
    Registered Users Posts: 247 ✭✭Bellie1

    Am only 4'9" . Guy in bike shop telling me that a 26" standard frame will be fine for me once seat brought down really low. Is that true? There's a smaller version of the bike 24" which he doesn't have.. Should I hold out for that and insist they order for me?


  • Registered Users Posts: 7,150 ✭✭✭CantGetNoSleep

    Yes - particularly with a bike that is too big, there is no way of making it fit right. Saddle height is only one factor, reach is probably more important.

    I wouldn't even insist to order in, I'd be finding a new shop where you will get better advice on what would fit you best.

  • Moderators, Category Moderators, Arts Moderators, Sports Moderators Posts: 47,459 CMod ✭✭✭✭magicbastarder

    as above, walk away and find a new bike shop. a 26" frame would be too big for someone a foot taller than you.

    it's odd to see frames sized in inches these days though; what bike were you looking at? 26" is massive.

  • Registered Users Posts: 485 ✭✭ARX

    A bike that needs the seat brought down really low to fit you is almost certainly too big. As already said, find another bike shop.

  • 26 sounds off here, I mean that translates to 66cm!!!!!!!!! Do bikes even come that big? I reckon the shop was talking about wheel size here regards to 26" , Canyon I believe don't use 700c wheels anymore on their smallest road bikes and run 650b.

  • Registered Users Posts: 1,989 ✭✭✭DavyD_83

    Agreed. My last purchase I ordered a black M bike as daily commuter, when I went to collect it was neon red in L, 2modelw above the one I ordered. I was made to feel like a a$$hole for being ungrateful for the 'free' upgrade and ended up taking the bike.

    I love the bike, but 2yrs later I still wish I had the M for that better reach and control.

    And typing this has made me realise I'm never using that shop again.

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  • Moderators, Sports Moderators Posts: 23,889 Mod ✭✭✭✭CramCycle

    I presume the bike had 26inch wheels and that the frame size is different?

    I would have thought you would be in the 44cm frame size region, maybe smaller. Either way find out the actual frame size as what you have posted isn't right in regards frames.

  • Registered Users Posts: 968 ✭✭✭8valve

    Frame size is the fundamental thing we prioritise when selling someone a bike; get that wrong and the customer will never be happy with the bike.

    Saddle height or fore/aft position and handlebar stem angle/height/reach can all be changed to fine tune the fit, as the secondary fine-tuning, for comfort.

  • Registered Users Posts: 6,228 ✭✭✭Tombo2001

    Wrong frame size will mean you back and shoulders will begin to feel stiff / sore, over stretching or understretching depending on too big or too small frame. You mightnt notice it on the three minute test cycle but after and hour or two it will matter. And after that it will be something you are thinking about everytime you get on the bike.

    EDIT - are you sure 26" is frame size and not wheel size?

  • Registered Users Posts: 247 ✭✭Bellie1

    Well went into shop today to rent out the bike for a few days to trial. I could hardly get on it and knew immediately it wasn't suitable. I'd explained to him how small I am and when he saw me, he realised. Unfortunately a shortage of ebikes at moment so will be waiting a few months until a small frame bike is available..And this is across a number of shops we called into. Thanks for feedback, I don't know if it was the wheels that are 26" or frame. Either way it was ridiculously big for me. So I'll look for less than 44cm frame . Thanks

  • Registered Users Posts: 72 ✭✭YakerK

    I wouldn't limit to just a 44cm frame - bikes from different manufacturers will fit slightly differently. you are never going to be on a 50-something cm frame, but for some bikes higher than 44cm might be fine for you. and for others it might still be too big! Key is to try out any bike you want to buy before you do!

    26'' has to be wheel size - even in your first post you said "standard size" - there is no such thing as a standard frame size but there is for wheels!

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  • Registered Users Posts: 247 ✭✭Bellie1

    Youre right, it was wheel size. This was the bike .

  • Registered Users Posts: 72 ✭✭YakerK

    That's a very different style of bike to what I imagine most people were talking about and the 44cm frame advise isn't really applicable here - the largest frame size on that model is under 46cm. On a road bike that would be very small. Again best bet is to try before you buy anything!

  • Moderators, Category Moderators, Arts Moderators, Sports Moderators Posts: 47,459 CMod ✭✭✭✭magicbastarder

    worth mentioning that on relaxed bikes and e-bikes, sizing isn't usually as critical as it is on a road bike; as you're generally not going to be working as hard, you're putting less pressure on your body and thus less likely to do damage due to sizing issues. also, on a road bike, people would regularly spend hours in the saddle, which is less common on those bikes.

  • Registered Users Posts: 1,322 ✭✭✭Rosahane

    I'd be looking at changing the handlebars to something lower and flatter for comfort and control.

  • Registered Users Posts: 2,910 ✭✭✭letape

    Presumably 26in and 24in are the wheel size options and not the frame size

  • Registered Users Posts: 247 ✭✭Bellie1

    I'm less than 50kg so even the weight alone made me feel out of control. I'd love a folding ebike but then have issue of not being able to carry 2 heavyish panniers on the back( need for commuting to work so need change of clothes on rainy days, lunch, laptop etc).

  • Registered Users Posts: 247 ✭✭Bellie1

    The smalles frame size I've come across is 16.8. , According to Halfords that's meant for someone 5'4" and up. I'll suss out the 16.8" one when get a chance. Am reluctant to buy one online as my knee is very dodgy so need to be sure it's a right fit.

  • Registered Users Posts: 7,275 ✭✭✭kenmc

    For what it's worth, my 7 and 9 year olds ride 24" wheel bikes, though the 9 year old could probably go to 26 easily enough - in other words, I'm pretty sure 24" wheeled bikes are for kids, never seen an adult bike at 24" wheels, BMX excepted

  • Registered Users Posts: 21,584 ✭✭✭✭Squidgy Black

  • Registered Users Posts: 247 ✭✭Bellie1

    It was combination of the weight and height of the ebikes that turned me off. Am waiting for a few shops to get delivery of 16.8" frame bikes. Doesn't seem much choice when it comes to ebikes less than 16". Wonder if could get some metalwork guy to build a raise for the rack on a folding e bike so could carry regular panniers.Would that affect the whole balance of the bike or anything? The heel strike against the bags works be an issue though . Alot of googling in store

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  • Registered Users Posts: 968 ✭✭✭8valve

    Check out the lower-slung style of ebike, such as KNAAP or RadRunner; both have 20 inch wheels and might be suitable?

  • Ha I took my wife out on a Knapp when we were over in Rotterdam for a wedding, you can take a passenger on one !!!!! It was like a Moped with pedals.

  • Registered Users Posts: 247 ✭✭Bellie1

    Have decided on a folding e bike as the low center of gravity and lighter weight gives me more control, being a shortass. Are disc brakes a must on an e bike?

    Anyone know if Forme bikes are well made?

    Also how often do motors have to be serviced? Is it important to see if local bike shop can service motor when considering which bike to buy?

  • Registered Users Posts: 14,376 ✭✭✭✭loyatemu

    My other half, who is fairly short, has one of these and is happy with it, though she doesn't do long distances so I can't vouch for the 50-70km range claimed. I also wouldn't describe any eBike as "light" - they'll always be a lot heavier than a regular bike.