road bike 2 sizes smaller
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  1. #1
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    road bike 2 sizes smaller

    Hi, i have a bianchi infinito size 57, i am 181cm(5'11") 82cm(32.3") inseam and always felt streched out maybe because it was my first road bike. Felt much better when i replaced the 120mm stem for a 100mm one. Bike fit is not an option at the moment but have no complaints how the bike rides now. Supposedly the current fit is perfect what impact would have a 2 sizes down in frame other than increased saddle to handlebar drop? Current handlebar reach is 486mm (386mm frame's reach+100mm stem) vs 485mm on smaller bike (375mm frame's reach+110mm stem), handlebar stack is 613mm (583mm frame's stack+30mm spacers) vs 581mm (551mm frame's stack+30mm spacers), seat tube is 570mm vs 530mm so saddle would rise 40mm and saddle to handlebar drop would be about 9cm from current 2cm. Seat angle is 73.5 degrees vs 74 in size 53 frame, crank lenght would be 172.5mm in both same as handlebar width 420mm. Thanks all for your inputs!

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    Quote Originally Posted by VASILIS_03 View Post
    Hi, i have a bianchi infinito size 57, i am 181cm(5'11") 82cm(32.3") inseam and always felt streched out maybe because it was my first road bike. Felt much better when i replaced the 120mm stem for a 100mm one. Bike fit is not an option at the moment but have no complaints how the bike rides now. Supposedly the current fit is perfect what impact would have a 2 sizes down in frame other than increased saddle to handlebar drop? Current handlebar reach is 486mm (386mm frame's reach+100mm stem) vs 485mm on smaller bike (375mm frame's reach+110mm stem), handlebar stack is 613mm (583mm frame's stack+30mm spacers) vs 581mm (551mm frame's stack+30mm spacers), seat tube is 570mm vs 530mm so saddle would rise 40mm and saddle to handlebar drop would be about 9cm from current 2cm. Seat angle is 73.5 degrees vs 74 in size 53 frame, crank lenght would be 172.5mm in both same as handlebar width 420mm. Thanks all for your inputs!
    I would definitely stick to the larger frame. If the frame is too small, your upper body will bend forward putting too much weight on your hands. Your neck will hurt from looking forward. Better to have weight 40-60% over front and rear wheel, so you can work the bike like an extension of the arms and legs. Comfort is key for power, efficiency, endurance. You have it on the larger bike, right? Bianchi won't disappoint when ridden hard.

    53 cm frames are small for a 5'11" rider. 57 is probably optimum as far as comfort. Over several hours, larger frames are always more comfortable. They absorb shocks better and the rider can stretch his back and arms without drastically altering position.

    Hold on to that 120 mm stem. Next year you may want to put it back on and stretch out a little more!

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by Fredrico View Post
    I would definitely stick to the larger frame. If the frame is too small, your upper body will bend forward putting too much weight on your hands. Your neck will hurt from looking forward...
    Listen to Fredrico.

    "Supposedly the current fit is perfect..." This sounds like it's based on a formula rather than perception. This the wrong way to go about it. You perceived you were stretched out, shortened the stem, and "felt much better". You're done.

    All this "size down" nonsense which is currently in vogue leads to drastic saddle-to-bar drops rendering riding on the drops for any reasonable length of time impractical and increasing fatigue while trying to tilt your head back far enough to view your environment.

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    I wasn't professionally bike fitted so i said "Supposedly the current fit is perfect..." to avoid comments on getting a bike fit or regarding stem, crank lenght, seatpost offset etc and focus on smaller frame's impact. Since reach would stay the same i shouldn't be hunched or cramped on smaller bike right? All others equal (seatpost offset, crank etc) and besides a little slacker seat angle and 10mm longer stem most major difference i see is the increased saddle to handlebar drop and indeed at least for my case would make riding on drops impossible..

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    Quote Originally Posted by VASILIS_03 View Post
    I wasn't professionally bike fitted so i said "Supposedly the current fit is perfect..." to avoid comments on getting a bike fit or regarding stem, crank lenght, seatpost offset etc and focus on smaller frame's impact. Since reach would stay the same i shouldn't be hunched or cramped on smaller bike right? All others equal (seatpost offset, crank etc) and besides a little slacker seat angle and 10mm longer stem most major difference i see is the increased saddle to handlebar drop and indeed at least for my case would make riding on drops impossible..
    I have the bars set on my Infinito like you do, near 1 inch / 2 cm drop. I use the drops all the time now, as one more comfortable hand position. The drops are great in headwinds and fast paced riding, for control on downhills, and much better comfort on bumpy roads. And it's better for my shoulders to switch back and forth between hoods and drops.

    I wouldn't like a 9 cm drop. That works for some riders that are more flexible than me. But I'd be back to the situation that many riders have: they only use the drops when forced to, for a short time.

    I have the 55 cm size frame, with 100mm stem and 20mm of spacers. I'm an inch shorter, and my arms are shorter than usual. It sounds like the 57 is just right for you.

    I've had a bike fitting a few years ago. Recently, this video helped me fine tune my saddle position. The test is: while pedaling, can you smoothly lift up to a sitting position. If it's a hard effort or you slide forward, the saddle probably needs to be moved back (and/or level adjustment). Saddle Fore Aft setting. The testing starts around the 4:00 mark.

    EDIT-- that 7cm increased drop will even affect your riding on the hoods.
    Try moving all three spacers to the top of your stem, to lower the bars by just 3 cm. I expect you won't like riding on the hoods. (Do you know the procedure for removing or installing a stem? You have to understand how the top cap is used for bearing adjustments, not for securing the stem in place.)

    For a permanent change of removing three spacers, there's more work to do.
    --maybe rotate the bars slightly, or move the hoods slightly on the bar curve. You are reaching the hoods from a different angle.
    --cut the fork steerer correctly.
    --reinstall the steerer plug to the new position.
    But for a test ride, just rearranging the spacers is enough.
    Last edited by rm -rf; 03-09-2019 at 06:48 AM.

  6. #6
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    I'm not sure why you are asking about such a small frame. Is it a very good deal, on sale?

    Pro riders often have undersized frames, but they also want the big handlebar drop.

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    Thanks for the video! Was asking mostly out of curiosity while trying to figure out what’s the best posture on my bike. I felt i had to move saddle as far forward as it could get on the 15mm offset seatpost to achieve KOPS and shorten the reach to get 90 degrees hands to torso angle and started to think if my frame is one size bigger or if i just had to get used to it. I’ve read many posts from infinito owners same size as me who were comfortable with longer stems and more seatpost offset and even 3-4cm higher saddles (mine shows 14cm post from clamp to seat rails) with 5-8cm saddle to handlebar drop and flat backs. I can almost touch my palms on floor and looked like i was stretching too much for such a small saddle to bar drop. Anyway feels comfortable for the 2h rides i’ve taken it and when i will have a chance i’ll get a bike fit!

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by peter p. View Post
    listen to fredrico.
    omg!!!!

    Why don't you just try a shorter stem, u can get them down to about 50.
    If you feel stretched out, I don't think adding 2-4" more drop from seat to bars is going to help that at all!!!!
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  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by rm -rf View Post
    I'm not sure why you are asking about such a small frame. Is it a very good deal, on sale?
    This is what I had to wonder. The OP says a bike fit is not an option - because of cost? Even a cheap drop dead deal on a new bike of any quality will cost more than a proper fit.

    A 57 is the right size. A frame that is two sizes smaller will be two sizes too small, period.
    "With bicycles in particular, you need to separate between what's merely true and what's important."-- DCGriz, RBR.

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  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by duriel View Post
    omg!!!!

    Why don't you just try a shorter stem, u can get them down to about 50.
    If you feel stretched out, I don't think adding 2-4" more drop from seat to bars is going to help that at all!!!!
    Hey, comrade, leave politics out of this, ok?

    We even agree that "adding 2-4" more drop from seat to bars" is NOT "going to help that at all!!!"

    Nice thing is, on the 57 cm frame, OP has the option to drop the bars lower if he wants to, anyway. The "Eddy fit" [wrenchscience] places the bar tops about 2 inches lower than the saddle. If that did it for Merckx, its good enough for this mortal!
    Last edited by Fredrico; 03-09-2019 at 11:02 PM.

  11. #11
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    Bike fit isn’t an option because of distance since closest one is 500km away and bike was bought online. I tried the best i could to choose the right frame, some guides put me in 57 others in 55 and as i mentioned from the many bianchi owners posts i’ve read others were comfortable with size 57 and others were professionally fitted in 55, with same height/inseam as me. I also wanted a litle more seatpost showing purely from aesthetic side. Maybe the 55 would have been a better fit but anyways replacing isn’t an option and in the long run i might need a more streched out cockpit like Fredrico said!

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    I tried that too to see how the size 55 would be with 16mm lower headtube, removed 2 spacers, lowering it furter 15mm (30mm total) to match 53 frame was placing me almost parallel on top tube when on hoods. When i get more used to it i will remove 10-20mm spacers (have 30mm atm) and then i will cut the steerer. Thanks for your help!

  13. #13
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    Just because someone is the same height and inseam doesn't mean diddly. You have to take into consideration torso length and arm length as well. I did fitting for over 3 years for a shop I worked at. I could take 3 different people and they would all have different requirements for fit.

    My recommendation is to get fitted.


    Going 2 sizes down will be way too small. Your hands would be so low it would be uncomfortable and your control of the bike will be compromised.

    If you feel that you need to go smaller, swap out your 100mm stem for a 90 or 80.

    I'm ride a 58 with a 75mm stem because a 56 has too low of a head tube for my liking.
    Last edited by frdfandc; 03-14-2019 at 07:21 AM.
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  14. #14
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    It all depends on how well you fit the current bike, and what your body dimensions dictate for proper fit.

    Personally, I ride a bike that's at least one size too small ... potentially two sizes ... I'm 5'11" and ride 54cm frames. I do this because I have short legs, long torso and long arms and need the bar drop ... I'm also extremely flexible.

    On top of that, I use "Drop that stem" headset caps to get the bar as low as possible and -17 degree stems ... then in group rides, spend at least half the ride in the drops, because I'm still too tall on the hoods.

    It works for me ... but doesn't work for many others.

    I can't even ride most 58cm frames because the stand over height is too high and I can't straddle the frame.

    Soooo ... it can work, if it's what YOU need. If it's not, it will likely be a disaster.

    As others have said, get a bike fitting if you are unsure. Take the time to schedule a fit at the closest fitter, take a day off and make it a day trip. It will be money well spent in the end and with the dimensions you get from the fitting , it will make it easier to size up what bikes work for you and which don't when ordering online or researching bikes for the future.
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  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by Wookiebiker View Post
    It all depends on how well you fit the current bike, and what your body dimensions dictate for proper fit.

    Personally, I ride a bike that's at least one size too small ... potentially two sizes ... I'm 5'11" and ride 54cm frames. I do this because I have short legs, long torso and long arms and need the bar drop ... I'm also extremely flexible.

    On top of that, I use "Drop that stem" headset caps to get the bar as low as possible and -17 degree stems ... then in group rides, spend at least half the ride in the drops, because I'm still too tall on the hoods.

    It works for me ... but doesn't work for many others.

    I can't even ride most 58cm frames because the stand over height is too high and I can't straddle the frame.

    Soooo ... it can work, if it's what YOU need. If it's not, it will likely be a disaster.

    As others have said, get a bike fitting if you are unsure. Take the time to schedule a fit at the closest fitter, take a day off and make it a day trip. It will be money well spent in the end and with the dimensions you get from the fitting , it will make it easier to size up what bikes work for you and which don't when ordering online or researching bikes for the future.
    This is me exactly! Ironic, as I think we are both riding Scott Foils! I’m 6’ 2”. I have a 56 and a 58. I’m equally comfortable on either. I have short legs, long torso and long arms. I am flexible. I have a pretty significant saddle to bar drop and I ride a pretty parallel posture to the top tube, with what we call in speed skating as a little cat back. Honestly, if I we’re to build up a custom it’d be a 57. If you have the flexi I don’t know why you wouldn’t want the most aero riding position? Frontal wind resistance is your biggest foe. And you are 85% of frontal wind resistance. I actively work at supporting my weight with my core more than my arms and at keeping my forearms parallel to the top tube with an elbow bent to prevent the lock out arm position. I spent a lot of time in the drops and I like a bar position rotated forward so much my hoods are just barely holding my sweaty hands from going over the top of them. My relationship to the hood isn’t as a brace. I agree completely with folks saying to make certain you get a frame in a size that works... Absolutely! But I am looking to ride the more aero and lighter set up, I mean why not?
    To date, philosophers have merely interpreted the world in various ways. The point however is to change it.

  16. #16
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    time to do a daily stretch routine to stretch out your back and hamstrings!

    What is the EFFECTIVE top tube of your bike?

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    Quote Originally Posted by aclinjury View Post
    time to do a daily stretch routine to stretch out your back and hamstrings!

    What is the EFFECTIVE top tube of your bike?
    It's 560mm long. Bike felt better when i shortened stem by 20mm and moved saddle all the way forward (seatpost has 15mm offset) thats why i thought i might have needed 1 size smaller frame or i just need to get used to road bikes since its my first..

  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by VASILIS_03 View Post
    It's 560mm long. Bike felt better when i shortened stem by 20mm and moved saddle all the way forward (seatpost has 15mm offset) thats why i thought i might have needed 1 size smaller frame or i just need to get used to road bikes since its my first..
    Be careful about moving your saddle forward. That will change the position of your knees in relation to the pedals and potentially cause knee problems.

    I know I will get some flack here, but do you know the term KOPS (knee over pedal spindle)? Your knees should not be forward of that position. If they are, you need to move your saddle back and find another way to get closer to the handlebars. If you still need to get closer, I would go with a 90mm or 80mm stem.
    "With bicycles in particular, you need to separate between what's merely true and what's important."-- DCGriz, RBR.

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  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lombard View Post
    Be careful about moving your saddle forward. That will change the position of your knees in relation to the pedals and potentially cause knee problems.

    I know I will get some flack here, but do you know the term KOPS (knee over pedal spindle)? Your knees should not be forward of that position. If they are, you need to move your saddle back and find another way to get closer to the handlebars. If you still need to get closer, I would go with a 90mm or 80mm stem.
    Actually to achieve KOPS i have to move it that far forward thought with minor adjustment in fore/aft i dont see any difference. I have to move it more than 6-7mm to see my position is changing, i might get a 0offset seatpost to have saddle rails more centered, bike fit seems a must. Reducing stem that much isnt an indication of a frame too big?

  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by VASILIS_03 View Post
    Actually to achieve KOPS i have to move it that far forward thought with minor adjustment in fore/aft i dont see any difference. I have to move it more than 6-7mm to see my position is changing, i might get a 0offset seatpost to have saddle rails more centered, bike fit seems a must. Reducing stem that much isnt an indication of a frame too big?
    I don't have a simple answer other than to find a fitter.
    "With bicycles in particular, you need to separate between what's merely true and what's important."-- DCGriz, RBR.

    “Statistics are like bikinis. What they reveal is suggestive, but what they conceal is vital.” -- Aaron Levenstein



  21. #21
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    A 100mm stem is by no means short.

    Set your saddle height, and set the fore/aft with the balance method.

    Then, adjust stem height and length to be comfortable.

    The only reason to go smaller is if you need to get your bars lower than possible on the current size, or need a crazy short stem (like 50 or 60mm).

  22. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by BlackSquirrel View Post
    A 100mm stem is by no means short.

    Set your saddle height, and set the fore/aft with the balance method.

    Then, adjust stem height and length to be comfortable.

    The only reason to go smaller is if you need to get your bars lower than possible on the current size, or need a crazy short stem (like 50 or 60mm).
    I used LeMond method as a starting point to set height though heel-to-pedal allows maybe 1/2”-1” raise without dropping my hip and KOPS to set fore/aft. Standover gap is less than 1/2”. Haven’t done many miles yet but feels ok as it is now besides a sore neck. Next month i might go for a bike fit and upgrade wheels too..

  23. #23
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    First post Hello all.
    Two sizes down? How bout 1?
    Great discussion and back forth. IC like this:
    Bianchi 57
    + Inseam, 32
    +standover hight < 2cm
    = Frame too big.
    No wonder a stem needs shortening. And rider feels stretched out.
    Bianchi Grande

  24. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by rudge66 View Post
    First post Hello all.
    Two sizes down? How bout 1?
    Great discussion and back forth. IC like this:
    Bianchi 57
    + Inseam, 32
    +standover hight < 2cm
    = Frame too big.
    No wonder a stem needs shortening. And rider feels stretched out.
    Bianchi Grande
    Superbly clever attempt at establishing rep before spamming.
    "That pretty much sums it up. I'm 43 and my max is ~178-180. If that HR chart was mine or Froome's, we'd be on the verge of death. But for you it probably looks like a normal workout." -TLG

    LOLOLOL

  25. #25
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    Here is a link that may be helpful.
    Scusamii, if you have a already see: https://www.livelo.com.au/pages/3-fu...hi-infinito-cv

    Because your post is about bike sizing, the good thing is you are able to claim no discomfort.
    Your standover hight is too tight, and while a shorter ( or even longer stem ) may give you increase handling or comfort, the frame remains bit too large.

    I ride a 54BMC my inseam is 850. I could easily ( and perhaps should ) ride a 51. All bike brands need to find your sweet spot... if you sense you need to size down.. your frame will tell you.

    I now express this opportunity too thank all members for your kind welcome, and we do pray that brother 9W can stay on topic, and not wake up tomorrow on the wrong side of his bed.
    Last edited by rudge66; 04-05-2019 at 03:54 PM.

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