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View Full Version : gestalt: help me move from 1992 to 2008 (a bike discussion)


giordana93
03-12-2008, 07:45 PM
e-richie's comments about gestalt on the latest stiffness thread have been enough of a spark to get me to post a thread I've been writing and deleting for a while now, partly in fear of just being too long-winded and partly because it falls into the "we can't fit you on a bike over the internet" category. so be it. maybe a few of the issues will be worth discussing more broadly. so here goes; I'll strive for brevity.
2007 or so, finally thinking of adding a stable mate to give semi-retirement to the 93 giordana--excel super steel, steel fork, fairly laid back (for a 52) at a 73.4 sta--I was told--dressed in dura ace 8 sti and a quill stem, levers set up the old way, mid span, tips touching the ruler along edge, so not a flat transition from tops, rather a bit more reach owing to some drop, tho the transition to the drops is not a great deal more. this factor matters because I'm trying to dial in reach and the extension with new 10 speed levers is different. 52 c-c, a 53.5 top tube, pretty classic. I run a fairly lengthy stem at 12 cm because I'm a short-leg, long torso body: 79.5 inseam, but 5'9" Exactly a fist-full of seat post showing, about 4" which is also about the length of the head tube. seat pretty far back on an off-set (American Classic) seat post. I could probably raise the seat some and scoot forward, but this position has been not causing pain in spite of drastically reduced mileage over the last few years--I'm lucky if I get 2500 in lately (and with this lovely spring in Cleveland--3 foot drifts last weekend, the miles are not comin!). another oddity: I bought the bike from glenn swan in Ithaca who, when I picked the bike up one fine graduation weekend (I was living in Quebec, but had finished at Cornell) only had a 172.5 or a 165 in the DA crank. since I already had a trick knee, had always been a monster spinner, and Glenn routinely beat the crap out of us at training races with his 165s, I said what the heck, use the 165s; these seem to encourage a bit more set back...oh, and I run about a 2" saddle to bar drop. all pretty classic--for the 80s and early 90s


so where's the question in all of this? well, first, is a 52 still a 52? between the lower pedal stack heights (and my tendency already to get leg extension in part from a further back position, though I'm gonna experiment with that this year), the generally taller head tubes and spacers at the headset, the adoption of the tops as the standard most of the day position, and relatively longer top tubes these days (well, 53.5 is still pretty standard), not to mention sloping options, I'm trying to figure out, without buying a stable full of frames and a box of stems whether to stay at a 52, size down to a 51, or even go up to a 53, where it is much easier to find sta's closer to 73 or 73.5, or, if I experiment with a little more forward position (I'm probably a good 2 cm behind kops, though I seem to recall having what the hinault-genzling numbers would call a long femur; it seems like the strawberry formula even put me on a really shallow 70 sta). I know of course there is no right answer to this and certainly not one that would not need to be tested on the road, but hey, it's winter, I got cabin fever, trying to weigh new bike options, etc.

more general questions, back to the thread title, can one generalize about shifts in the position from the hoods rotated upwards to the flat transition for "relative" prescriptions about going from a threaded, spend most of the go-fast times in the drops to a threadless mostly on the tops-hoods position? and finally, if anyone with my morphology wants to jump in. or stories of transitions to newer bikes or positions. I know of course one could essentially duplicate the old position, but just wanted to throw a bike gestalt thread out there (maybe a semi-poll, have you found your mojo position, has it changed over the years...)
it's ok if the thread dies a slow, lonely death, I just thought it might be fun to talk bikes and bike fit, getstalt, in the new millenium (remember Y2K??!!) esp. for those of us who spent lots of time in the drops cause that was the closest to your shifter kinda position as we now get a little older

elmo

stevep
03-12-2008, 07:53 PM
too many questions.
where you live?
somebodys got to send you to visit somebody.

rwsaunders
03-12-2008, 07:55 PM
too many questions.
where you live?
somebodys got to send you to visit somebody.

Home of the Brownies. It figures...Gio's been snowbound this winter. :cool:

swoop
03-12-2008, 07:55 PM
well, first, is a 52 still a 52?

more or less yeah.

e-RICHIE
03-12-2008, 07:56 PM
so here goes; I'll strive for brevity.

elmo
back after idolmo.


ps that's brevity atmo.

M.Sommers
03-12-2008, 07:57 PM
What SteveP said. I'd add that you deserve a new bike. :beer:
It's timemo. Get one that fits, maybe even better for you (you're +15 years from when you bought the bike). Also, make certain it's a hot bike, the color you want. Heck, maybe even retro 80's colors...here is my first fast bike:

http://tandem-fahren.de/Mitglieder/Christoph_Timm/Centurion.jpg

AgilisMerlin
03-12-2008, 07:57 PM
cool topic.


used to live Ithaca

I am going to sit in the corner, read replies, and hand out beers. give me a shout when your glass is empty

e-RICHIE
03-12-2008, 08:05 PM
was google image surfing during commercial atmo.
ladies and gents, here's the c.o.b.mo -

http://www.coutant.org/morecele/sinatra.jpg

J.Greene
03-12-2008, 08:10 PM
Your Hotmo. Can I have my credit back?

JG

was google image surfing during commercial atmo.
ladies and gents, here's the c.o.b.mo -

http://www.coutant.org/morecele/sinatra.jpg

rpm
03-12-2008, 08:25 PM
You, my friend, are a guy who's a perfect candidate for a good fitter and a fully custom frame. Focus all that nervous bike energy on shopping and choosing. Hey, you deserve it as least as much as any of the rest of us.

giordana93
03-12-2008, 08:31 PM
ok if that's not a thread drift..

fellas, this is not a self-help question. my giordana fits nicely. I know how to use a tape. been at it for 25 years. Now that I've thrown out the lengthy facts (had to give some background to frame discussion, elmo), here again are the salient issues
pedal stack heights have lost up to a cm from quills and cleats; the hoods have been brought up a few cm with the ergo sti lever positions and possible a stack of spacer and or a head tube extensions, etc.
le jerk advocates the long stem, runs a major saddle to bar drop, and claims somewhere never to have adopted fully the hoods up top and flat position (btw I don't know him, never ridden with him so correct as necessary). I stayed up too late last night following the atmo saga while trying to write a test and letter of recommendation, so only got a few hours of sleep and not totally succinct-lucid. should have prob. left out the "am I a 51, 52 or 53" question, I'm just trying to have some genuine discussion about positions as they've evolved in past decade owing to both equipement changes, and yes, maybe some aging bodies (brought home by my aching back from 5 hours of shoveling last weekend--this from a kid raised in New Orleans....better known to locals, NOT as the big easy, but as the crescent city aka nola, now that's a nice coincidence
dykwimtmno, do you know what it means....

e-RICHIE
03-12-2008, 08:40 PM
is this a question about how to take your
position and fit it to frames of different eras,
or are you wondering if your position is not
optimum atmo? ps i don't read much or wellmo.

pdxmech13
03-12-2008, 08:52 PM
I'd say a little baileys/whiskey with that coffee could clear things up.

Fixed
03-12-2008, 08:55 PM
bro i'm really dumb so excuse me but cleveland must have some shops with some bros go hang out with them with your bike ... bro have you been on the new bikes they don't feel that much different to me take a wrench with you and a adjust as needed ..i think i remember the jerk sayin merckx 's postion was modern even then .
cheers imho good luck :beer:

giordana93
03-12-2008, 09:00 PM
is this a question about how to take your
position and fit it to frames of different eras,
or are you wondering if your position is not
optimum atmo? ps i don't read much or wellmo.

I think you just nailed it; that is exactly the right question to be asking, and I'm afraid it's a little of both. As you all know too well, it's a delicate balance between set back, saddle height, stem reach, and bar drop, and crank length too given the 165s I've been running for a decade on my main road rig. So on the one hand I'm wondering if one should just plug in the same reach numbers when migrating to a newer era frame, but am intrigued as well about experimenting with a bit more forward position. after all, if my legs weren't so short, there's no way at 5-9 I'd be on a 52 and by extension I should have an even longer torso than a 5-9 guy on a 55, no? but I've been plenty comfortable and pain free on the Gio. I picked up a used bianchi last summer that had 172.5s, a 75 sta and campy ergos, and though I would never keep that one as my main squeeze (got it for a song, so it was worth it for parts alone), it put the existential doubt into my head about my position; my first real bike was a viner with parallel 75 hta-sta and I raced it just fine in the flat lands of Louisiana (it was a handful when I got to Ithaca, and that 44-52 had to go!). But I also wanted this to be a more open discussion that people might want to jump in on, not my unique fit issues alone.

e-RICHIE
03-12-2008, 09:10 PM
I think you just nailed it; that is exactly the right question to be asking, and I'm afraid it's a little of both. As you all know too well, it's a delicate balance between set back, saddle height, stem reach, and bar drop, and crank length too given the 165s I've been running for a decade on my main road rig. So on the one hand I'm wondering if one should just plug in the same reach numbers when migrating to a newer era frame, but am intrigued as well about experimenting with a bit more forward position. after all, if my legs weren't so short, there's no way at 5-9 I'd be on a 52 and by extension I should have an even longer torso than a 5-9 guy on a 55, no? but I've been plenty comfortable and pain free on the Gio. I picked up a used bianchi last summer that had 172.5s, a 75 sta and campy ergos, and though I would never keep that one as my main squeeze (got it for a song, so it was worth it for parts alone), it put the existential doubt into my head about my position; my first real bike was a viner with parallel 75 hta-sta and I raced it just fine in the flat lands of Louisiana (it was a handful when I got to Ithaca, and that 44-52 had to go!). But I also wanted this to be a more open discussion that people might want to jump in on, not my unique fit issues alone.
your height, shoe size, weight, and saddle reach is whatmo?

pdxmech13
03-12-2008, 09:11 PM
for all intents and purposes you could ask 10 people about your fit with them watching you on the bike.
8 of them will give you a different final answer.
jmoh

giordana93
03-12-2008, 09:18 PM
your height, shoe size, weight, and saddle reach is whatmo?
height 5 ft 9
shoe 43
weight when I won my first race 25 years ago- 145, this morning prob. 160
saddle reach (that's saddle nose to bar?) 53, from seat cluster or seat post center to bar is 64. saddle height around 70. been playing a little bit with cleat placement and set back so it varies

pdxmech13
03-12-2008, 09:21 PM
today's 55 give or take a cm.

davids
03-12-2008, 09:23 PM
bro i'm really dumb so excuse me but cleveland must have some shops with some bros go hang out with them with your bike ... bro have you been on the new bikes they don't feel that much different to me take a wrench with you and a adjust as needed ..i think i remember the jerk sayin merckx 's postion was modern even then .
cheers imho good luck :beer:Spin in Lakewood. HubBub in Chesterland. Both good shops, based on my visits to the old homestead.

giordana93
03-12-2008, 09:25 PM
for all intensive purposes you could ask 10 people about your fit with them watching you on the bike.
8 of them will give you a different final answer.
jmoh

yeah, that's exactly why I wrote in the first post "I know of course there is no right answer to this"

it's also why I really resist the idea "go see a fitter and go custom"; I'd rather spend the time playing within the parameters that I already know

pdxmech13
03-12-2008, 09:27 PM
you know the things you do like.
now change the things you don't like.

e-RICHIE
03-12-2008, 09:27 PM
height 5 ft 9
shoe 43
weight when I won my first race 25 years ago- 145, this morning prob. 160
saddle reach (that's saddle nose to bar?) 53, from seat cluster or seat post center to bar is 64. saddle height around 70. been playing a little bit with cleat placement and set back so it varies
your saddle height is too low.
raise it to at least 72.
get 1725s unless fitness no longer matters.
get a frame w a 55cm top tube and use an 11 or 12 stem,
whichever yields the reach you've assimilated.
set the saddle nose to 6cm rear of central movement.
no non-setback s postsmo.

disregard all of this if you're not riding regularly and/or
if you are plagued by mecahnical issues atmo.

ps send pucci some benjamins.

giordana93
03-12-2008, 09:29 PM
today's 55 give or take a cm.
ok, let me repeat from original post: on my 52 c-c, I have about four inches of post showing and a 2 inch drop to the bar; try to picture that on a 55. I'm just not seeing it.

e-RICHIE
03-12-2008, 09:30 PM
ok, let me repeat from original post: on my 52 c-c, I have about four inches of post showing and a 2 inch drop to the bar; try to picture that on a 55. I'm just not seeing it.
then raise the saddlemo.

giordana93
03-12-2008, 09:49 PM
interesting suggestions that I'll gradually attempt; in the past, anytime I've raised much beyond current height I've gotten pain in back of knee, but it is true that I had fairly decent set back, though not much past 6 cm (6 cm rear of central movement does mean center of BB, no?). but 72 seat height? with a 79.5 inseam, that puts me at what, 90.57% of inseam. I've always pedaled kind of flat-footed but that would be way toes down.

I have found, and would like comments maybe on this, that I've always really rolled my hips forward which gives me a nice flat back, but effectively raises the saddle as well (are you seeing this?) so I can ride with a higher saddle in a climbing or hands on tops, hip angle open, but as soon as I roll it forward, tight hammies come into play. I really gotta work on regaining some flexibility


ok, you'll have to explain the bananas to pucci thing; I'm still a newbie in that regard, elmo dykwimtmno

manet
03-12-2008, 09:50 PM
isnt 165 like the cost of a rapha vest on sale

e-RICHIE
03-12-2008, 09:53 PM
>>> that puts me at what, 90.57%...


screw the formula.
you're an inch taller than me and have bigger feet.
my saddle height is 715cm.
feel me?
ps this is all free advicemo.



interesting suggestions that I'll gradually attempt; in the past, anytime I've raised much beyond current height I've gotten pain in back of knee, but it is true that I had fairly decent set back, though not much past 6 cm (6 cm rear of central movement does mean center of BB, no?). but 72 seat height? with a 79.5 inseam, that puts me at what, 90.57% of inseam. I've always pedaled kind of flat-footed but that would be way toes down.

I have found, and would like comments maybe on this, that I've always really rolled my hips forward which gives me a nice flat back, but effectively raises the saddle as well (are you seeing this?) so I can ride with a higher saddle in a climbing or hands on tops, hip angle open, but as soon as I roll it forward, tight hammies come into play. I really gotta work on regaining some flexibility


ok, you'll have to explain the bananas to pucci thing; I'm still a newbie in that regard, elmo dykwimtmno

giordana93
03-12-2008, 10:02 PM
isnt 165 like the cost of a rapha vest on sale

well what's interesting about the whole 165 thing is that, in spite of what looks like it has to be increasing leverage, and of course it sort of does, is there really any way that you are somehow magically producing more power to the pedal? no. the pedal circle is just one circle that interacts via the chain with the other 2 circles in the chainwheel and cogs, and the fourth circle the wheel, so a bigger crank is just really a smaller (easier to turn over) gear that you turn over, in most cases more slowly, so... I dunno. this should probably be another thread (that might rival the political ones getting closed tonight). one thing's for sure, it is not macho atmo to run shorter cranks, unless you're a track sprinter, and like wider bars (or stiffer frames, while we're at it), I'm just not buying the increased leverage argument. but let's save that one for another rainy (snowy :crap: ) day

in any case, it never seemed to slow down glenn swan back in Ithaca (or elsewhere..)

AgilisMerlin
03-12-2008, 10:10 PM
my wife is 5' with shorter legs.

she runs 167.5's

just sayin'

she's mighty powerful, she runs the show :D

giordana93
03-12-2008, 10:16 PM
>>> that puts me at what, 90.57%...


screw the formula.
you're an inch taller than me and have bigger feet.
my saddle height is 715cm.
feel me?
ps this is all free advicemo.

I may be an inch taller but wear 30 inch inseam jeans, 79.5 cm measured. I'm all torso.
ps your generosity of time and knowledge is (had already been by me) duly noted; you are true a princemo and the outpouring last night in support of atmo was evidence of that.
where do I look up the banana reference?

manet
03-12-2008, 10:20 PM
gio

its after 11, atmo's dreaming of carbon toilet seats...

e-RICHIE
03-12-2008, 10:24 PM
I may be an inch taller but wear 30 inch inseam jeans, 79.5 cm measured. I'm all torso.
ps your generosity of time and knowledge is (had already been by me) duly noted; you are true a princemo and the outpouring last night in support of atmo was evidence of that.
where do I look up the banana reference?
the pants measurements are completely irrelevent atmo.
thanks -

giordana93
03-12-2008, 10:43 PM
ok will end communications for the night

will add a pre-emptive note about my inseam measurement in case anyone wanted to point it out: the jeans number was just a reference point. the 79.5 cm is the actual measured fit-stick or book-in-crotch number

over and outmo
;)

M.Sommers
03-12-2008, 11:03 PM
isnt 165 like the cost of a rapha vest on sale

That's $165.00 American dollars, then you need to do the conversion. Turns out to be $549.00. :D

Fivethumbs
03-13-2008, 02:40 AM
I think you should go buy this book called Zinn and the Art of Road Bike Maintenance. It's full of great information, especially if you are not totally up to date on threadless/carbon/STI/Ergo, etc. And there is a section in the appendix on bike fit. The author (Leonard Zinn) gives some really good guidelines for fitting yourself on a bike. I used his methods and came very close to being dialed in right away. I did have to do some final tweaking to get everything just right (I have a box o' stems) but it's really hard to get everything perfect right out of the box.

stevep
03-13-2008, 07:09 AM
you live in ithaca?
go see swan.

make yr life easy.

somethign about yr numbers seems wrong...
like yr height vs saddle height, etc as e-r notes.

majorpat
03-13-2008, 07:45 AM
in any case, it never seemed to slow down glenn swan back in Ithaca (or elsewhere..)

You'll be pleased to hear that Glenn is still whaling on pretty much everyone to this day. I goof off at a few races every summer and he shows us all that we aren't very fast. Luckily, I don't venture into his category. However, one of our town kids that I helped get started now races at Cornell and Mr Swan is a real mentor to many of the "next" generation of bikers. Now if I could just get that kid to admit that Greg LeMond was better than Lance...

davids
03-13-2008, 07:50 AM
you live in ithaca?
go see swan.

make yr life easy.

somethign about yr numbers seems wrong...
like yr height vs saddle height, etc as e-r notes.He's in/near Cleveland. You're living in the past again.

Gio,

I'm confused. You don't want to discuss this with a competent bike shop, face to face, but you think we'll be able to give you meaningful answers over the Interweb? There are some very knowledgeable guys here (I'm not among their number), but no one's that good. Even stevep...

manet
03-13-2008, 08:02 AM
You'll be pleased to hear that Glenn is still whaling on pretty much everyone to this day. I goof off at a few races every summer and he shows us all that we aren't very fast. Luckily, I don't venture into his category. However, one of our town kids that I helped get started now races at Cornell and Mr Swan is a real mentor to many of the "next" generation of bikers. Now if I could just get that kid to admit that Greg LeMond was better than Lance...

the fastest crit i ever raced was in syracuse. swan came second. manet in field.

also used to do the greene cross race. swan on old trek mountain bike. rode up what others dismounted for.

R2D2
03-13-2008, 08:10 AM
I may be an inch taller but wear 30 inch inseam jeans, 79.5 cm measured. I'm all torso.
ps your generosity of time and knowledge is (had already been by me) duly noted; you are true a princemo and the outpouring last night in support of atmo was evidence of that.
where do I look up the banana reference?

I wear 30" jeans but my sadlle height is 73 cm and I ride 175's with a 56 cm tt. Never been more comfortable.
Whats your actual measruement to the floor?

giordana93
03-13-2008, 08:26 AM
used to live in Ithaca, now in Cleveland. Bought my Giordana from Glenn. I don't know what's so hard to get about this; I'm not perfectly symetrical between upper body and lower body, but not freakish either. 5'9" with an inseam just under 31.5" or 79.5 cm. I've taken this measurement at least 100x over the years and it's never over 80cm.When I got fit for my Viner with the original fit-kit back in 1983, the numbers said 52 c-c; Lemond formula (I x .65) gives 52 c-c with a 70.5 seat height, but given that I've been riding speedplays and Time RXS lately which easily drop a half cm off that, I think 70 to 71 is really the max unless I were to put my cleat under my tip toes and ride toe down all the time. the heel to pedal method of old yields even lower. Every time I've tried to go higher than these numbers it has felt great in the first hour or so, but then I get pain in the back of my left knee suggesting a too-high saddle. Now, granted this has been with some decent set back, but never more and often less than the 6cm suggested by the gracious Mr. Sachs (6cm is often un-achievable on most 52s that are usually at least 74 sta). It's off-season still here, so I'll try for the umpteenth time to go higher, which will no doubt bring me further forward and I definitely need to work on hamstring flexibility, but as it is now, with my seat at 70 and a not too far set back of 4.5 cm, my heel barely brushes the pedal with shoes on --and that's cheating with a 165mm crank. In socks with my leg locked, I don't reach it, probably have close to a cm of clearance, so I might be able to raise it a bit, but I don't know about adding an extra 2cm. BTW, I didn't set the seat based on any formula, other than as a starting point. I don't have the miles lots of forum members do, but I'm somewhere over 50,000, and by comparison, when I discovered the Competitive Cyclist fit calculator, I was exactly, to within 5mm, to the numbers they generated, so can't be that far off.

BUTCH RIDES
03-13-2008, 08:29 AM
hello if you are lucky enough to get e-richie's advise take it atmo
bye

e-RICHIE
03-13-2008, 08:31 AM
It's off-season still here, <cut>
ya see - that's the thing.
it's never off-season.
these issues matter dailymo.
otherwise they should never matter.

and that's not a diss atmo.

giordana93
03-13-2008, 08:44 AM
He's in/near Cleveland. You're living in the past again.

Gio,

I'm confused. You don't want to discuss this with a competent bike shop, face to face, but you think we'll be able to give you meaningful answers over the Interweb? There are some very knowledgeable guys here (I'm not among their number), but no one's that good. Even stevep...


sorry guys, lots of posts while I was writing my last post; I'm not refusing to visit a shop; Hubub used to be close-by, and I've never been to , but have heard good things about Spin. I'm in Cleveland Hts.-Shaker Hts. area, though, so a good half hour to 45 minutes to either of them. I think the gist of the original post has started to drift though and has been a bit lost, so I'll try to re-state it: First, what, if anything did you do on your position when you went from the "I'm usually in the drops and can spend all day there" (on a normal to deep drop bar, not shallow or anatomic goofy pointing down to the ground) position that we had in the 80s to the "who needs the drops, I'm already extended while on the hoods which are the same height as my tops (and have a flat transition from them)" position. My hoods drop a good 2 inches from the tops with my DA STI set up the old way, so part of my "reach" is coming from the drop
and a secondary matter was this: given that pedal stacks have dropped (with, given the same seat height means there's less post showing) while head tubes seem to be getting longer or extended, does a typical 52 still fit the same, and I'm thinking not, because the bars on smaller frames are a bit higher and your position on ergo-sti's is higher anyway so someone (let's not use me, as I'm a bit on the edge of the bell curve) who would have taken a 53 in 1983 could well be on a 51 today with exactly the same contact points.

oh, and as my previous post(s) should have made clear, 79.5 is my measured inseam, not the jeans

giordana93
03-13-2008, 08:49 AM
ya see - that's the thing.
it's never off-season.
these issues matter dailymo.
otherwise they should never matter.

and that's not a diss atmo.

when my weekly mileage drops to 0 to 50 and monthly below 100 or so, it's the off-season. less of an issue pre-K (which for me means pre-kids as well as pre-Katrina) when I could get out more

e-RICHIE
03-13-2008, 08:52 AM
when my weekly mileage drops to 0 to 50 and monthly below 100 or so, it's the off-season. less of an issue pre-K (which for me means pre-kids as well as pre-Katrina) when I could get out more
what issue do you want to solve atmo?
the position?
the bicycle?
how bicycles and parts have evolved?

MilanoTom
03-13-2008, 08:56 AM
used to live in Ithaca, now in Cleveland. Bought my Giordana from Glenn. I don't know what's so hard to get about this; I'm not perfectly symetrical between upper body and lower body, but not freakish either. 5'9" with an inseam just under 31.5" or 79.5 cm. I've taken this measurement at least 100x over the years and it's never over 80cm.When I got fit for my Viner with the original fit-kit back in 1983, the numbers said 52 c-c; Lemond formula (I x .65) gives 52 c-c with a 70.5 seat height, but given that I've been riding speedplays and Time RXS lately which easily drop a half cm off that, I think 70 to 71 is really the max unless I were to put my cleat under my tip toes and ride toe down all the time. the heel to pedal method of old yields even lower. Every time I've tried to go higher than these numbers it has felt great in the first hour or so, but then I get pain in the back of my left knee suggesting a too-high saddle. Now, granted this has been with some decent set back, but never more and often less than the 6cm suggested by the gracious Mr. Sachs (6cm is often un-achievable on most 52s that are usually at least 74 sta). It's off-season still here, so I'll try for the umpteenth time to go higher, which will no doubt bring me further forward and I definitely need to work on hamstring flexibility, but as it is now, with my seat at 70 and a not too far set back of 4.5 cm, my heel barely brushes the pedal with shoes on --and that's cheating with a 165mm crank. In socks with my leg locked, I don't reach it, probably have close to a cm of clearance, so I might be able to raise it a bit, but I don't know about adding an extra 2cm. BTW, I didn't set the seat based on any formula, other than as a starting point. I don't have the miles lots of forum members do, but I'm somewhere over 50,000, and by comparison, when I discovered the Competitive Cyclist fit calculator, I was exactly, to within 5mm, to the numbers they generated, so can't be that far off.

What's so hard is that instead of paying some mind to the advice being shared with you, you're attempting to justify what you you are already doing regarding your measurements and frame size. You can ignore the rest of us, but if you ignore Richie (especially his admonition to screw the formulas), there's no pointmo for any of us to post on this thread. You already read Richie's take on your saddle height. I'll share the "shorter" perspective. My inseam is about 4.6 cm shorter and I have smaller feet than yours, and my seat height (with 170mm cranks) is less than 1 cm lower than yours from the center of the bb to the top of the saddle. There's no single Competetive Cyclist set of numbers. For each set of measurements, it gives three different fits; the variations between them are far more than 5mm. If you matched one, you were off on the others.

For what it's worth, I think you should be on a larger (or at least longer) frame.

Tom

Chris
03-13-2008, 09:07 AM
You are being what is called the "yes, but client" in my biz. They come for therapy, ask for help, and then when they are given some insight, they explain why it won't work in their instance.

Yes, bikes have evolved over the course of the last 15 years. Yes, positions are slightly different. Yes, you may want the levers a little higher and the drop to your bars a little lower. Being able to move your hand to where you shift is an important part of the equation. That's why we used deeper drop bars back in the day, and it's why some people use a more shallow drop now since they have accomodated their ability to be lower on the hoods thanks to the brifter thing. You are getting a ton of great answers here. The solution though, is get yourself to a good shop and buy a modern bike after having your disproportions examined by an objective eye.

staggerwing
03-13-2008, 09:29 AM
I'm no expert, but do what works for you. Yeah, the current "style" seems to have more saddle to bar drop, but if you are going to spend all of your time on the hoods, why have drops? I would rather have a more old school, higher bar position, and use tops, hoods and drops. I have carpal tunnel issues, and being able to move around on the bars comfortably is far more important than style.

And, why not try e-Ritchies suggestions. FWIW, I'm just about 1cm taller, with about a 2cm longer inseam and have my seat height around 75cm. Cranks are 175mm too; I couldn't imagine running 165's.

Not trying to be harsh, but more ridin' and less thinkn' maybe?

giordana93
03-13-2008, 09:42 AM
ok, I'm starting to sound like a stubborn idiot, but just want to say: I already said I'm gonna try to go higher again (slowly, incrementally), so I'm not simply ignoring the collective wisdom. I am saying tho that when I've gone higher in the past I got pain in back of knee; that's harder to ignore than the best wisdom (what's the expression, one test is worth a thousand expert opinions?) and I'm not even sure I could clip into both pedals and turn them over if I were to raise my saddle another inch, but we'll see. you're right about the multiple competitive cyclist positions of course, I was pretty much throwing out (disregarding) the French fit which is the really low seat and long top tube, because that's the opposite of the direction the suggestions were heading anyway
I'll post those numbers below just for reference. But again want to emphasize that I'm not following or want to follow any formula; I got to my position the old fashioned way, with an allen wrench in my pocket and trying out a few different stem lengths and 20+ years of riding in what most of my friends or teammates said "looked" like a good position, nice flat back, and generally injury free. Believe me, I've wanted to go to the higher saddle, my mind likes the idea, just not my knees so far. I am willing (and this is how I'm gonna justify trying at least one more time) to admit that part of this is the "creature of habit" syndrome that kept Sean Kelly in his odd position and that the many,many hours of this position have made it feel right and anything else wrong, so base miles this year, and the commute bike, etc. will all try to change that; I can always fall back on the old numbers. I really didn't think this was going to turn into a thread about me and my position (ok, I did say "help me" in the title, what the hell was I expecting?!); just wanted to get a good bike thread going because last night we were beating the stiffness debate issue again, which just didn't seem like the best way to engage these great minds, and I thought it might be interesting to discuss the whole gestalt thing, see if people had to make adjustments when their most common position for going fast--in the drops--had come up a good 3-4 inches to be on the tops and ergos



fwiw the CC numbers when I ran them last; my own position has been pretty stable at 52 c-c frame; 53.5 TT, 12 cm stem, saddle to bar 53 or so, depending on set back, set back 4.5-6, bb to saddle 69.5-70
screw the formulas, though, and this will (I hope, no promise) be the last time I mention my own situation, as I feel guilty already about all the generous time people have given. cheers to all and long live this greatmo group. elmo nola dykwitm

The Competitive Fit (cm)
-------------------------------------------
Seat tube range c-c: 51.8 - 52.3
Seat tube range c-t: 53.4 - 53.9
Top tube length: 53.3 - 53.7
Stem Length: 10.9 - 11.5
BB-Saddle Position: 68.4 - 70.4
Saddle-Handlebar: 51.7 - 52.3
Saddle Setback: 4.6 - 5.0
Seatpost Type: NON-SETBACK


The Eddy Fit (cm)
-------------------------------------------
Seat tube range c-c: 53.0 - 53.5
Seat tube range c-t: 54.6 - 55.1
Top tube length: 53.3 - 53.7
Stem Length: 9.8 - 10.4
BB-Saddle Position: 67.6 - 69.6
Saddle-Handlebar: 52.5 - 53.1
Saddle Setback: 5.8 - 6.2
Seatpost Type: NON-SETBACK


The French Fit (cm)
-------------------------------------------
Seat tube range c-c: 54.7 - 55.2
Seat tube range c-t: 56.3 - 56.8
Top tube length: 54.5 - 54.9
Stem Length: 10.0 - 10.6
BB-Saddle Position: 65.9 - 67.9
Saddle-Handlebar: 54.2 - 54.8
Saddle Setback: 5.3 - 5.7

jerk
03-13-2008, 09:44 AM
i can't speak to your fit but i will attempt to answer the question about evolving geometries and positions which i think was one of your questions.

bars are shallower, hoods have come up on the bars, stems protrude at more of an angle and frame tubes have gotten fatter. overall, positions haven't changed much, and there isn't enough of a difference to really make it matter for shorter people where the differences are probably not going to enable a wholesale change in frame size.

big guys are almost without exception forced to use much smaller frames to achieve the same position...once stems start getting long, that slight upward angle starts bringing things very high, the shorter reach bars, the higher hoods etc. etc....balance between the wheels and straight handling geometry hasn't really changed; but tom boonen would have been on a 62cm frame in 1993 and now he's on a 58cm...although the reach and drop and all the position bits are in the same place.

the fact that modern race bikes tend to have less setback is more an italian style thing; they like the look of a saddle pushed all the way back on its rails...

example-my position is the same on all my bikes- i need a -17' stem and traditional deep drop bars with the hoods run low to make it work on my sachs which is a 63 c-t i think, and i need a 82' stem and hoods high on my c50 which is a 59 c-t or my dogma which is a 57 c-c. all these bikes are the "same size" though becuase they all fit the same.

jerk

caveat: erichie measures bikes c-t; your giordana is c-c. i don't even want to get into your specific fit because i don't know any of the details...

fixednwinter
03-13-2008, 09:49 AM
First, what, if anything did you do on your position when you went from the "I'm usually in the drops and can spend all day there" (on a normal to deep drop bar, not shallow or anatomic goofy pointing down to the ground) position that we had in the 80s to the "who needs the drops, I'm already extended while on the hoods which are the same height as my tops (and have a flat transition from them)" position. My hoods drop a good 2 inches from the tops with my DA STI set up the old way, so part of my "reach" is coming from the drop

oh, and as my previous post(s) should have made clear, 79.5 is my measured inseam

I have to agree with MilanoTom: take Mr. Sachs' advice, he's given you some deep knowledge & information here. Jerk has also summed it very well: spatial fit is the same, more or less, but it looks different due to the changes in equipment. And, get yourself sooner rather than later to a decent shop with a really good fitter on staff.

For what it's worth, I'll write about my 80's to current position, since we have very similar height/proportions: When I went through that transition, I had a comfortable 80's position for my upper body that didn't really need changing. When I looked at how my bars from my old bike (Cinelli 66: saddle to bar tops, 5cm drop. The hoods a further 2cm down from the tops), I asked myself, where do I place my hands the majority of my time? For me, the answer is, the hoods.

Since I was comfortable with that, I measured the height of my hoods at the section where I place the most weight on my hands (in my case, the palm area below the thumb and first finger). I also measured the distance from the saddle nose to that point. I now had the height and distance of my true reach (not just the reach to the bar tops, which was closer to the saddle with older, long reach bars like the Cinelli 66). So that's the contact point I wanted to preserve.

The end result on my current bikes with threadless steerers, contemporary bars, flat transition, etc. etc., compared to my 80's bike is the bar top height is 2cm lower - 7cm drop from saddle instead of 5cm. With its flat transition, the contact point of my hands on the hoods is virtually the same. Another advantage: the flat transition behind the hoods and the hoods very high up on the curve of the bars are more comfortable to my wrists than the old 80's bar/position.

Reach from the nose of the saddle to the tops at the clamp on today's shorter reach bars tends to be further out, by 0.5 to 1cm. I didn't need to preserve the tops reach from my 80's bike, as I spend most of the time on the hoods.

My proportions and height are very close to yours, so we have similar issues. My legs are shorter and my torso longer (very gorilla-like!).

Your saddle height vs. your inseam: It seems low. My inseam is about 1.5cm lower than yours, yet my saddle height is only 4mm lower than what you have.

Your reach and stem: Sounds like you're comfortable with your reach, but you can probably use a longer top tube and a shorter stem.
I also have stock bikes where I need to run 12cm stems with long reach bars, and I can tell you, the balance and weight over the front wheel is not as good as bikes (one stock, a Colnago, and one custom, an Hampsten) with a longer top tube and a 10cm or 11cm stem. Read Steve and Andy Hampsten's ideas on the ideal stem length as it relates to frame size on their website.

giordana93
03-13-2008, 09:50 AM
Not trying to be harsh, but more ridin' and less thinkn' maybe?

yes! isn't that what all of us up north are thinking! we've usually had a warm spell by now so we can at least get on the road bike and suffer snow run off (the other day when the blizzard came through Cleveland, the weather dudes reminded us that this time in 2000 we had hit 79). I think everyone by now has cabin fever pretty bad (witness "the midwest sucks" thread..). Cleveland drives me crazy because it snows, then melts, then turns to 10 degrees, so you just about can't get out on the x-country skis, for the ice and roots, cross and mtb is either in 2 foot drifts or ice, etc. At least when I lived in Quebec (or Ithaca, for that matter), once winter hit you coudl do the winter stuff. Cleveland has all the bad sides of winter and precious few of the good ones. I will say though that we have some of the best road riding I've ever had access to, so spring will come one day... just gotta keep saying it

e-RICHIE
03-13-2008, 09:50 AM
BB-Saddle Position: 68.4 - 70.4

BB-Saddle Position: 67.6 - 69.6

BB-Saddle Position: 65.9 - 67.9

i'd lose the formulas atmo.

jerk
03-13-2008, 09:55 AM
i'd lose the formulas atmo.


those forumulas assume the use of pedal blocks.

jerk

giordana93
03-13-2008, 10:04 AM
those forumulas assume the use of pedal blocks.

jerk
because you gotta be a block head?

staggerwing
03-13-2008, 10:32 AM
Yes, I'm in the other corner of Ohio, and don't get quite the snowfall, but otherwise it's similar. A balaclava, clear lensed ski goggles, winter nickers, good gloves and a bit of attitude make all but the worst weather bikeable. Cycling is my heroin, and a couple of days off make me almost unbearable to be around.

Fat Robert
03-13-2008, 10:47 AM
dudemo

drive to chestermo

pay the depositmo

get the fitmo

wait for the framemo

in the interimo

ride a giodanamo

get it on closeout from jerkmo

set it up like atmo says so, atmo-mo

(driving e-ritchie's signature style into the ground, one oafish parody at a time)

swoop
03-13-2008, 02:18 PM
don't forget the anxiolytics.
(its a joke).