Bike shopping can be daunting. With all of the styles to choose from, finding one tailored to you may seem impossible.
This mountain bike offers the ideal blend of performance, comfort, and value. Equipped with a carbon frame set, Fox suspension, and Sram components. Not to mention it was put through an exhaustive 141 point inspection at The Pro’s Closet!
Material choice plays a significant role in its performance. While every material has flaws, proper design and construction can bring out its best traits in any frame.
Steel frames have long been prized for their combination of responsiveness and comfort, being durable, affordable and highly customizable. Chromoly (chrome molybdenum) and alloy steels offer exceptional strength.
A frame is at the core of every bike and must be robust enough to withstand rigorous tests while remaining light enough for speed.
Round frames make an eye-catching statement, as seen on Audrey Hepburn and Nicole Richie. Not only can they add length to short faces while softening sharp angles, they can also soften any harsh lines between features on an otherwise angular face.
Step-through frames make mounting and dismounting simpler for riders with limited mobility; these bikes are frequently found among women’s bikes.
Bike frame sizes are measured using the diameter of their seat tube; although this was once considered the only factor, that’s no longer the case.
Finding your ideal bike frame size depends on your height and inseam length measurements. Being aware of these two measurements will allow you to find that “Goldilocks zone”. Knowing these two numbers is particularly crucial for children so they can enjoy riding from day one without feeling intimidated or uncomfortable on their bikes.
Steel frames are relatively straightforward. Constructed of round tubes joined together, these frames are cheap, sturdy and versatile enough for any use imaginable.
Carbon fibre frames are extremely light and stiff, yet can be expensive.
Aluminium is less costly than carbon but heavier; to maintain similar stiffness levels as steel it requires larger tubing diameters and has reduced corrosion resistance than titanium.
Finding a comfortable saddle height is key to improving pedaling efficiency, comfort and injury prevention. A common guideline suggests aligning it with your hip when standing next to the bike.
There are multiple approaches used to determine appropriate seat height, including the “heel method”. This involves standing barefoot against a wall with your back against it while placing a book between your legs with its spine facing away and measuring from floor to spine (then multiplying by 0.883 and subtracting an eighth of an inch).
Seat Post Length
Unsung yet essential, the seat post plays a pivotal role in bike ergonomics. Most bikes feature a flat seatpost that tapers gradually at its top with one bolt holding onto saddle rails attached by saddle clips.
Posts come in lengths that range from 75mm to 400mm, providing more comfort but should never go beyond your frame’s minimum insertion mark, lest they crack it.
Seat Post Width
Seat posts come in various lengths. Older bikes may feature posts with narrowed top ends that feature one bolt tightening into a saddle rail cradle, as opposed to wide posts which come standard.
Setback should also be considered when selecting the ideal seat post size, and some riders find them particularly effective for using their quad and hamstring muscles more efficiently.
Stem length can have a tremendous impact on your riding comfort. A shorter stem will bring more of your bodyweight forward onto the front wheel, making climbing and descending easier.
Longer stems offer greater stability and allow for a more stretched-out riding position, measured from the center point of the steerer tube bore to the center point of the handlebar clamp without considering angle of stem.
The stem is the tube connecting the handlebars to the steering column and can be adjusted by loosening its bolts, moving its spacers and tightening again.
Longer stems can move riders forward into more aggressive riding positions while simultaneously decreasing turning sensitivity of their bike. Stem angle can be adjusted by tilting or rotating the quill stem up or down.
The stem connects your handlebars to the frame. Available in various lengths and designs, it can be tailored to meet the requirements of any riding style.
Longer stems can extend your reach while shorter ones reduce it. You can adjust the angle of your stem using spacers of different sizes underneath or by switching out with another stem with different dimensions.