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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jun 2007
    Posts
    2

    Cyclocross bike for 5 foot 4 inch man?

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    Hello ladies. Iím a man.
    I normally donít post on womenís forums but since Iím short (5 feet 4 inches) and Iím looking for a bike I thought I would ask help from women (who normally are shorter than men) about bikes for short people. I sized a 49cm road bike and the top bar was, well letís just say I felt the bar and it was WAY too close for comfort. Close, actually if I didnít have shoes on I think I would have been hurting. Iím looking for a cyclocross bike that has a small frame for short people. Below is a repost from another forum.

    I currently own a http://www.k2bike.com/products/biked...ear=2006&ID=66 and I love it. Itís very comfortable to ride. Currently I try to ride 5-7 miles each day and 12-15 miles on the weekends. The problem is I want something thatís more efficient but will still allow me to ride on trails around town. Currently I mostly ride on sidewalks, streets that have at least a 3 foot wide shoulder (I donít trust drivers), and established trails. Iím looking at getting a Cyclocross bike because I think it would be perfect for what I do. Iím 5 foot 4 at 187- pounds (the Ė is because Iím losing weight!) and I want to spend around $1,000 for a decent cyclocross bike that I will never compete with. I live in Austin Texas. I know Redline, Surly, and Jamis have small framed bikes. Does anyone else know of any other ones or have any suggestions. Thanks.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Feb 2006
    Location
    San Antonio, TX
    Posts
    2,024
    Yes I do. Bianchi makes a series of cyclocross bikes that I believe go all the way down to 44 cm. For example, bianchilady on this board has a nice volpe. http://www.bianchiusa.com/06_volpe.html. Check them out.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Location
    I'm the only one allowed to whine
    Posts
    10,576
    Surly's cyclocross is the Cross Check. The Cross Check is pretty spiffy.
    http://www.surlybikes.com/crosscheck_comp.html

    This is my Surly Cross Check, all set up to be a commuter.


    I'm 5'8" and ride a 52 cm frame.

    Edit: btw, the pricetag on my Surly was $930. That's not what I *paid* because I did some trading-in, but I'd say the bike is quite fine for that price. Plus the Surly is designed to be fiddled with so you can change parts all over the place. (you can even make it a fixie!)
    Last edited by KnottedYet; 06-19-2007 at 08:21 PM.
    "If Americans want to live the American Dream, they should go to Denmark." - Richard Wilkinson

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jun 2002
    Location
    Mrs. KnottedYet
    Posts
    8,975
    gadgetadam,

    I was going to say Luna cycles, which is clearly marketed as a womans frame but hey, they are always custom so they'd build for anyone who wants the bike.

    They may be a bit more than what you want to spend unless you find on the used market.

    My niece rides a Specialized cross to work. Her commute is both on roads and off road unpaved trails lucky gal. She put slicks on the bike and completed every mile of the AIDS Lifecycle ride. Then just pop the knobbies on and back to work. Seems like a very versatile bike, it's light too.

    If I was getting a cross I'd want the Surly (because I work in customer service and I just love the idea of my bike being Surly) or a Rivendell. The Surly would probably win because less expensive and my LBS builds them up.

    BTW, we don't trust cars either and yet I still feel safer on the road simply because it's easier than dealing with intersections, driveways, uncertainty there.

    Oh, 5'1", 47 +/-cm road bike (the +/- is it's custom so not a standard size).
    Custom Road bike ~ Mondonico Futura Legero
    Found on the road ~ Motobecane Mixte
    N+1 new bike ~ Salsa Vaya
    Commuter ~ Soma Buena Vista Mixte

    http://madeinusareviews.blogspot.com/

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Feb 2006
    Location
    San Antonio, TX
    Posts
    2,024
    Since men have longer upper bodies and shorter lower bodies, I think a guy that is 5'4" will need a smaller frame size than a women of equiv height to clear the top tube. He did say a 49cm was too small, while most women that are 5'4" can clear the top tube with a 49cm seat tube, but find the top tube too long. So, I think he needs to find out who makes a 44 cm cyclocross frame. The bianchi volpe is the only one I am aware of, but there may be more. Another thing to look for are sloping top tubes that may have more clearance even in a larger size. Also, be sure to check geometry charts to see if the stand over height is caluclated as center to top vs. center to center. For example, this 49cm Fuji Comp is 49cm center to top, which will have more clearnance than a 49 cm that is center to center: http://www.fujibikes.com/2006/bikes.asp?id=137#. Welcome to our world!

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Aug 2005
    Posts
    4,556
    I'll second the recommendation of the Cross Check. Mine was an ebay purchase, and was built up (not stock) exactly the way I would have wanted it.

    I'm 5'4" and ride a 50 cm comfortably. I usually ride a larger frame size, but in my experience, cross checks are a little longer than my other bikes on the top tube.

    Good luck!

    CA
    Most days in life don't stand out, But life's about those days that will...

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Location
    I'm the only one allowed to whine
    Posts
    10,576
    Surly has a 42cm and a 46 cm Cross Check.

    Kona's cyclocross frames have slanting top tubes, but the smallest is a 49cm. www.konaworld.com/bikes/2k7/JAKE/index.html

    There is a Surly Cross Check and Long Haul Trucker owner's forum at www.surlyville.net Someone there might be able to tell you how they like the fit of the smaller frames from a functional standpoint.
    Last edited by KnottedYet; 06-20-2007 at 05:29 AM.
    "If Americans want to live the American Dream, they should go to Denmark." - Richard Wilkinson

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Location
    Seattle
    Posts
    8,548
    That Bianchi Volpe is fine and the price is right!
    Mimi Team TE BIANCHISTA
    for six tanks of gas you could have bought a bike.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Aug 2006
    Location
    Vermont
    Posts
    1,414
    I'd also suggest looking at the Bianchi Axis. Mine is 52 cm and a great fit for me (I'm 5'6", with a long torso). Here it is:

    Click image for larger version. 

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    This year's model comes in a 44 and a 49; there's a geometry chart on the website here:
    http://www.bianchiusa.com/07_axis.html

    (Looks like the replaced the super-tiny triple on my model with a compact double; a good move imo).

    It's a really fun bike, stiff & snappy, quick handling, comfy relaxed geometry, and at around 21 lbs including fat tires, not too much heavier than my roadbike.

    One thing to be aware of with cross bikes -- the BB is often higher than with road bikes (someone more knowledgeable than I may be able to tell you why this is, but it's a result of slightly different rear-triangle angles), which can affect TT clearance, so depending on the particular model you may size down from your road bike size.

    Make sure you pay as much attention to the TT length/reach as to the clearance, it's more important to overall fit.
    Last edited by VeloVT; 06-20-2007 at 07:22 AM.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Jun 2007
    Posts
    2
    Thanks everyone. There were some great replies. I'll check them all out.
    -GadgetAdam

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Location
    WA State
    Posts
    4,389
    I know Redline goes down to a 44 with their cross bikes - one thing to remember is that the bottom bracket is higher on a cross bike so the stand over on a comperable sized road bike will be a less, since they are measuring the length of the seat tube only. If you are really stuck and the smallest sizes don't fit Kona and Redline both make a 24" wheel version for kids that has a 39cm seat tube. I'm thinking you're probably much too tall for that, but its something to consider if all other options seem closed.....
    Last edited by Eden; 06-20-2007 at 10:22 AM.
    "Sharing the road means getting along, not getting ahead" - 1994 Washington State Driver's Guide

    visit my flickr stream http://flic.kr/ps/MMu5N

  12. #12
    Join Date
    May 2006
    Location
    Md suburbs of Wash. DC
    Posts
    2,131
    I'm 5'3" and I love my 49cm Specialized TriCross. I bought the TriCross in order to do the same sort of riding you described, but I've ended up branching out with it to do more road riding and a litte mtb. It's terrifically versatile. I tweaked the fit a bit as far as the stem/bars, but the frame size has been just fine. Sorry I can't post a link to info about it, but I'm at work and snuck on-line for a few minutes
    "How about if we all just try to follow these very simple rules of the road? Drive like the person ahead on the bike is your son/daughter. Ride like the cars are ambulances carrying your loved ones to the emergency room. This should cover everything, unless you are a complete sociopath."
    David Desautels, in a letter to velonews.com

    Random babblings and some stuff to look at.

  13. #13
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Location
    Western Washington
    Posts
    123
    I got a Bianchi Volpe about a month ago - my first road bike. Coming from mountain bikes, the cross bikes just seemed a bit friendlier, plus I liked the idea of being able to take it on dirt trails if I wanted, with just a tire change.

    I'll hit 400 miles today, and so far, I love it!

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Aug 2005
    Location
    Michigan
    Posts
    555
    I don't have any suggestions, but just wanted to give a word of caution...

    Many times as you get smaller and smaller in frame size, toe overlap can become a problem. Be sure to check for toe overlap while test riding. Not sure what size feet you have, but if you need a smaller bike and have big feet, if could be a problem.

  15. #15
    Join Date
    Nov 2004
    Posts
    407
    Redline Conquest Pro is a great bike. It might be a little out of your price range, but I'm not sure because I had my build up with the componets I wanted and didn't purchase the stock model. I'm a smaller woman, the bike fits me like a glove and most importantly, it doesn't have any toe overlap issues.
    Just keep pedaling.

 

 

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