Old 05-14-19, 03:16 PM
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Iride01's Avatar
Join Date: Jul 2017
Location: Mississippi
Posts: 2,317

Bikes: '91 Schwinn Paramount '78 Raleigh Competition GS

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My 2 ........

Your proportions aren't too much different than mine. I'm 5' 11" and a little over 34.5" inseam. Long arms, hard to find a properly fitting long sleeve shirt. I grew up on oversized frames from the 70's to today. I still ride the old styles diamond frame road bikes from the 70's, and 90's.

A 59 cm frame is the smallest I feel comfortable on and have ridden very happily for 35 years a 25 inch frame (63.5 cm). BUT..... remember I'm on the old style bikes. The geometries and tube lengths grew differently as the frames got bigger back then.

A modern frame around 58 cm actually feels pretty good to me and so have modern 56 cm frames, but I've never ridden one for more than a few turns around a large parking lot as I've never seriously considered purchasing one.... yet.

So if you are wanting a road bike, then maybe consider a bike from the 70's to 90's. Or, just insist on trying out a size or two bigger at the bike shops when you go. Every LBS I've been to always judge me by my height alone and try to put me on something I'm not comfortable on.

As for long cranks..... I wouldn't. I'm not a fan nor believer in the proportional crank length sizing some one popularized in the 60'-70's. What you need to consider for crank length is whether you want to be a masher or a spinner.

Long cranks are generally for mashers that like low cadences. Short cranks are for spinners that like to maintain high cadences. The longer your cranks, the more you discomfort you may have when you are in a decent aero position which is what you should be in if you are truly road biking for endurance over long distance. Also, excessively long cranks can cause interference with your foot and the front wheel when turning at slow speeds or may strike the ground when banked for a turn.

I like to spin on a bike, so I have 165 mm cranks which are also about the size I had on all my bikes from the late 60's to today. I did try a 170 mm for a while, but I had a slightly noticeable pain develop behind my knee. I wasn't debilitating and it didn't hurt my performance, but I didn't want to wait and let it develop into anything. So after using 170's for four month or so, I switch back to 165's and the pain has never showed itself again.

Last edited by Iride01; 05-14-19 at 03:37 PM.
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