Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast
Results 1 to 25 of 30
  1. #1
    RoadBikeReview Member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Apr 2013
    Posts
    1

    can i ride a 52cm road bike comfortably?

    Dear friends, i want to buy a road bike for me.My height is 1.77cm ( 5'10") and my leg height is 81cm (2'8").I think i need to buy a 54cm frame bike.But i want t buy a used one, and until now i have not seen a bike by 54 or bigger frame.But i found a 52cm frame bike and i want to if i could ride it without any problem.So i am waiting your helps or ideas.Thanks.

  2. #2
    banned
    Reputation: Sisophous's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2010
    Posts
    702
    Forget about it, it is out of the question. Even 54 is too small unless you make modifications to the bike. Look for a 56 or 58 yet I am the same height and I ride a 58, the same as Lance Armstrong who is also 5'10.

  3. #3
    RoadBikeReview Member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Apr 2011
    Posts
    3
    Each bike manufacture size's can run a bit different. I'm 5'9 and am riding a Gunnar 52. Gunnar's (Fastlane) 52 has a long top tube at 545mm. Other manufacturers might call that a 54, or larger. Typically the size designator is indicative of the seat tube length. If you have a relatively short inseam (like I do), a 52 with a long top tube may be a good fit. Try using the stand over height and the top tube length to get the best fit. Hope this helps.
    c

  4. #4
    Not a rocket surgeon.
    Reputation: tihsepa's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2008
    Posts
    9,128
    Quote Originally Posted by Sisophous View Post
    Forget about it, it is out of the question. Even 54 is too small unless you make modifications to the bike. Look for a 56 or 58 yet I am the same height and I ride a 58, the same as Lance Armstrong who is also 5'10.
    This is a great example of complete misinformation. While I agree that a 52 may be too small. I would not just rule out other sizes of bikes without more information. I am 5'10 and ride a 54-55. A 58 would be much too big for me. To each their own but I believe a 52 is too small for anyone that height.

  5. #5
    RoadBikeReview Member
    Reputation: Fireform's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Posts
    2,444

    can i ride a 52cm road bike comfortably?

    I'm 5-10 and one road bike is a 52 (standard) and the other a 54 (compact geometry). I also have a relatively long torso for my height. 56 would be too big and 58 out of the question.
    Arguments among misinformed people do not constitute a "debate."
    --Kerry Irons

    "Atheism is a religion like not collecting stamps is a hobby."
    --BianchiJoe

    Cervelo S3/Dura Ace
    Felt B2Pro/SRAM
    Cannondale CAAD10/105

  6. #6
    banned
    Reputation: Sisophous's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2010
    Posts
    702
    Quote Originally Posted by tihsepa View Post
    I believe a 52 is too small for anyone that height.
    Funny one, you just contradicted yourself, first I am giving a great example of complete misinformation then you agree with me that 52 is too small for anyone that height. It is true it is a personal preference.

  7. #7
    Not a rocket surgeon.
    Reputation: tihsepa's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2008
    Posts
    9,128
    Quote Originally Posted by Sisophous View Post
    Funny one, you just contradicted yourself, first I am giving a great example of complete misinformation then you agree with me that 52 is too small for anyone that height. It is true it is a personal preference.
    I am disagreeing with just throwing out a size. Even if Lance Armstrong rides it.

  8. #8
    RoadBikeReview Member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Jul 2011
    Posts
    2,094
    Quote Originally Posted by Sisophous View Post
    Forget about it, it is out of the question. Even 54 is too small unless you make modifications to the bike. Look for a 56 or 58 yet I am the same height and I ride a 58, the same as Lance Armstrong who is also 5'10.
    BS
    You can't offer advice for someone on a frame based on minimal measurements (and the 2 offered are minimal).
    A 52 is most likely on the small side for the OP, but it can't be ruled out until one knows all his measurements.
    A 54/54 may be a better fit (my guess is it would be).
    A 56 may well be too large for him (depending on ride preference).

    @OP
    Use one a few of the online fit calculators:
    Fit Calculator - Competitive Cyclist
    This one offers a lot of explanations and different fits.
    Do some reading.

  9. #9
    AKA: Sheila Muirenn
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Posts
    428
    I ride a 52, (535 effective Top Tube) have a 33.3 inch inseam, my torso is 22.75, and I'm 5'7''. My arms are the same length as my torso.

    My torso might be around 5 inches shorter than yours. That means I need a shorter top tube, and smaller bike.

    But, I use a zero-offset seatpost because my tibias (shinbones) are long. This allows me to get my knees over the pedals. (I need my saddle pushed much farther forward over the pedals than most). Because of this, I can use a longer TT for my torso height than some other people.

    People with longer femurs often use a setback seat post to push the seat back , so they can get their knees over the pedals, and hence a slightly shorter TT than expected. (Proportionally, compared to mine).

    Meaning, you don't automatically need a TT 5 inches longer than mine. It might be 3 inches longer, it might be 6. (Especially if you have a shorter neck, and even longer torso than expected).

    That said, this particular bike sounds far too small for you.

    When I look for used, I usually see many bikes in the 54-60 range, all of which I can't ride.

    Keep looking. And perhaps find an independant fitter to take your measurements. Then bring the geometry to him before you buy anything, that way, the bike will fit.

    Or, you can do the Serotta Size Cycle, and a few other options, to get your body measured, they will then tell you your exact measurements, and recommend Head Tube Height, Effective Top Tube, Head Tube Angle, Stack, and Reach requirements.

    Much better than guessing. (Research your area. Likely, someone can help you).
    Last edited by aureliajulia; 04-07-2013 at 07:24 AM.

  10. #10
    RoadBikeReview Member
    Reputation: looigi's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2010
    Posts
    6,264
    The seat tube length, or effective length, or whatever, is about the most useless dimension available for deciding on bike size. It was OK back in the old days when bikes had all very similar geometries and horizontal top tubes, but now, forget about it. Effective top tube is may be the best single measurement, but better yet is stack and reach.
    ... 'cuz that's how I roll.

  11. #11
    RoadBikeReview Member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    Posts
    177
    It depends on how the bike is measured. If the 52 is a level top tube and actual seat tube length, I would say no, the bike is too small. If the bike is a sloping top tube and the actual seat tube is 52, then maybe. If the 52 is a virtual size, and the actual seat tube is less say 48 or whatever, then no.

    Keep in mind many of the frame makers are using sloping top tubes, and labeling the size of their bikes as if the top tube is level. I have a Serotta Fierte that is called a 58 by the maker, the actual seat tube is 55.5 c-t.

    Because of all the variation in how frames are measured, you can't compare between brands just on this measurement, you need to know that the head tube length and top tube length are correct for you.

  12. #12
    Recycle King
    Reputation: RoadrunnerLXXI's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2012
    Posts
    776
    Leche, the best advice is to test ride the bike. You will get immediate feedback as to it feel comfortable or not. As several people already mentioned, frame size will be different for each person since multiple people who are 5'10" will have different arm length, torso length and leg length. And frame size is just a label which is not the same geometry among the different brand of bikes. You can also go to your LBS and get a professional opinion so you can narrow down roughly which size you should be looking for. Good luck.
    "The will to win means nothing without the will to prepare." - Juma Ikangaa, 1989 NYC Marathon winner

    "Common sense is not too common these days."

    "Cheap things have no value, valuable things are not cheap." - Fortune Cookie

  13. #13
    RoadBikeReview Member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    May 2010
    Posts
    3,387
    If 52 means 52 'effective' and your proportions are normal for a 5 10 guy (I wouldn't assume either)....It's probably less than ideal but not completely out of the question but you'd need a long stem.

    I'm 5 8 and ride a 52. It's perfect for me. Granted your 2 extra inches is a big deal if it's all above the waist but I'm quite stretched out on a 52 and my stem is only 100 so it would seem a reasonable possibility that someone 2 inches taller than me could ride the same bike and split the difference with being a little less stretched out and have a longer stem.

    If I was a betting man I'd say 54 is your size but I wouldn't rule out 52 until you try it. It's almost certain you'll need a longer stem than 52's generally come with though.....not that that would be a problem.

  14. #14
    RoadBikeReview Member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Posts
    1,193
    If you have a long torso for your height, I would think you would need a larger bike, not a smaller bike, in order to get a long enough top tube. Or did you mean you have a short torso?

  15. #15
    RoadBikeReview Member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Jan 2008
    Posts
    454
    depends how far you want to reach forward. the rear triangle is pretty similar on most from 52 to 56 give or take a few mm. imagine sitting on a mono-cycle then reaching forward without losing balance.
    when the degree of the torso & upper arm angle is decreased the lower the handlebars can be set while maintaining balance & comfort.
    i think the limiting factor would be how much toe overlap you'd be willing to accept if any.
    my 2c

  16. #16
    RoadBikeReview Member
    Reputation: Kontact's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2011
    Posts
    2,731
    It isn't all relative. I worked for the last several years I worked for the best fitter in the midwest, and I'd can count on a couple of fingers the number of times someone 5'10 didn't end up on a 56 (equivalent) stock frame.

    Inseam doesn't really change anything because the frame size is the composite of leg length and torso length, and if one is short the other must be long, so you can't really favor one or the other for sizing. That's why height is a great guide.

    Lot's of people can get themselves on a smaller or larger frame since the top tubes are only changing by 1.5cm per size, but the head tube height becomes an issue.

    5'4" = 50, 5'6" = 52, 5'8" = 54, 5'10" = 56, 6' = 58, 6'2" = 60

    That's a guideline, not a rule. But like a rule, if it doesn't work there is likely a reason for the exception that leads you back to the rule.


    52 sounds like a bad idea. If someone 5'10" could comfortably ride a 52, what are shorter people supposed to be riding? It's like a 180 pound women being a Dress Size 2.
    Get a better saddle: www.kontactbike.com

  17. #17
    RoadBikeReview Member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Jul 2013
    Posts
    11
    Quote Originally Posted by looigi View Post
    The seat tube length, or effective length, or whatever, is about the most useless dimension available for deciding on bike size. It was OK back in the old days when bikes had all very similar geometries and horizontal top tubes, but now, forget about it. Effective top tube is may be the best single measurement, but better yet is stack and reach.

    This is spot on. I am 5'7 with 31 inseam, long arms. I ride a 53 fuji (54.5) top tube. A 52 Specialized (52) top tube. A 56 Specialized (54.5) top tube. By far for me, the 56 Specialized is my most comfortable bike to be on. Sounds too big, but its the bike I feel best on. For longer rides, its my goto unit. Next is the fuji, then the 52cm. I have 110cm stems on the 52 and 56 and an 85cm on the 53. End result is you must ride diff bikes and set them up to YOUR liking, what feels right to you may be totally off to another. It depends on ALL YOUR measurements.

  18. #18
    RoadBikeReview Member
    Reputation: Kontact's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2011
    Posts
    2,731
    Quote Originally Posted by Sardond View Post
    This is spot on. I am 5'7 with 31 inseam, long arms. I ride a 53 fuji (54.5) top tube. A 52 Specialized (52) top tube. A 56 Specialized (54.5) top tube. By far for me, the 56 Specialized is my most comfortable bike to be on. Sounds too big, but its the bike I feel best on. For longer rides, its my goto unit. Next is the fuji, then the 52cm. I have 110cm stems on the 52 and 56 and an 85cm on the 53. End result is you must ride diff bikes and set them up to YOUR liking, what feels right to you may be totally off to another. It depends on ALL YOUR measurements.
    This doesn't make any sense or follow what you quoted. The numbers you provided mean your reach varies by at least 4cm. That's absurd.
    Get a better saddle: www.kontactbike.com

  19. #19
    Token Sprinter
    Reputation: RaptorTC's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2012
    Posts
    624
    As others have said it really depends on the specific geometry of the frame. I'm around 6'2". One of my bikes is a 58 and my other bike is a 55.5. However, both have the exact same effective length top tube. Just a matter of one having a sloping top tube while the other doesn't.

  20. #20
    RoadBikeReview Member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Jun 2013
    Posts
    550
    You really have to ride the bikes. I am 5'7" and most 52cm bikes are too small for me. I ended up with a Fuji Altamira in 53cm but the reach to the bars is longer then most and that fits me well. I just finished a 104 mile ride and actually felt really good at the end. The same size frame from Felt was really cramped

  21. #21
    RoadBikeReview Member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Jul 2012
    Posts
    1,438
    I am 5'7" and ride a 52 cm Trek. I swapped the 90 mm stem with a 110 and it seems to work well. Given where my seat is I bet I could fit on a 54, but since I bought used I only had the option of a 52.

    The numbers Kontact presented seem to make sense for a rough guideline.
    Joe
    Road Bike - Trek 5200 | MTB - 2003 KHS Alite 4000 26" Hardtail

  22. #22
    RoadBikeReview Member
    Reputation: eriku16's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2011
    Posts
    72
    Quote Originally Posted by JoePAz View Post
    I am 5'7" and ride a 52 cm Trek. I swapped the 90 mm stem with a 110 and it seems to work well. Given where my seat is I bet I could fit on a 54, but since I bought used I only had the option of a 52.

    The numbers Kontact presented seem to make sense for a rough guideline.
    For average people.... beyond that, you are on your own.

    I'm 5'8, with a 32" inseam and I'm on a 52cm C'dale. A 54cm would seem to be the right fit for me. However, I have long arms, very flexible and I like an aggressive fit. That means a 15cm saddle to bar drop, no spacers under a 140mm stem with a short reach, compact bar.

  23. #23
    RoadBikeReview Member
    Reputation: Kontact's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2011
    Posts
    2,731
    Quote Originally Posted by eriku16 View Post
    For average people.... beyond that, you are on your own.

    I'm 5'8, with a 32" inseam and I'm on a 52cm C'dale. A 54cm would seem to be the right fit for me. However, I have long arms, very flexible and I like an aggressive fit. That means a 15cm saddle to bar drop, no spacers under a 140mm stem with a short reach, compact bar.
    Actually, you are illustrating my rule of thumb very well: Your height dictates 54, you desired an unusually long drop and you were willing to use an uncommonly long stem to do it. Yet you are still only one size down from what I would have predicted.

    To address the general discussion on bike sizes - they have never been completely uniform, and got really wonky when manufacturers tried to go to S-M-L sizes. But just like the introduction of the Virtual Top Tube, most companies have gone to virtual sizes that reflect the old level TT size equivalents.

    Even Colnago's screwy compact frame sizes have a virtual frame size equivalent in their geometry chart. So using size numbers is an okay starting point for most brands.
    Get a better saddle: www.kontactbike.com

  24. #24
    coaster
    Reputation: Lelandjt's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2008
    Posts
    707
    Quote Originally Posted by looigi View Post
    The seat tube length, or effective length, or whatever, is about the most useless dimension available for deciding on bike size. Effective top tube is may be the best single measurement.
    When I hear someone say "54cm bike" I think 54cm top tube. Who cares how long the seat tube is?

  25. #25
    RoadBikeReview Member
    Reputation: Kontact's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2011
    Posts
    2,731
    Quote Originally Posted by Lelandjt View Post
    When I hear someone say "54cm bike" I think 54cm top tube. Who cares how long the seat tube is?
    Because the important parts of a road bike fit are head tube/stack height AND top tube length, corrected for seat tube angle.

    Bike sizes are like dress sizes - a "54" is not just a TT length, but an overall fit.

    Many sizes have very small differences in real TT length, but their stack differences are just as important.

    Anyway, small bikes have longer TTs than the size number, and large bikes have shorter. TT is just one important fit number.
    Get a better saddle: www.kontactbike.com

Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast

Similar Threads

  1. Went on my first road ride with my first road bike!
    By tracerprix in forum Beginner's Corner
    Replies: 10
    Last Post: 04-06-2011, 06:19 PM
  2. Comfortably Numb...
    By Antonio_B in forum The Lounge
    Replies: 16
    Last Post: 12-02-2010, 10:27 PM
  3. 52cm cross bike without toe overlap
    By Scott D in forum Cyclocross
    Replies: 5
    Last Post: 10-11-2010, 04:39 AM
  4. First ride on my new road bike after years on a mountain bike
    By TallCoolOne in forum Beginner's Corner
    Replies: 1
    Last Post: 02-27-2010, 08:22 AM
  5. 52cm and a nice bike ??
    By tempwarez in forum General Cycling Discussion
    Replies: 10
    Last Post: 03-25-2009, 11:17 AM

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •  

INTERBIKE

Contest

Hot Deals See All Hot Deals >>

Interbike Featured Booths

Check out the hottest road bike products from these brands!



















See All Interbike Coverage - Click Here »


Latest RoadBike Articles


Latest Videos

RoadbikeReview on Facebook