|Cycle Sizing Guide|
Cycles are sized by frame size (apart from kids bikes which are sized by wheel), this is generally based on the length of the seat tube and in most cases is the distance from the top of the seat tube to the centre of the crank axle, this measurement is commonly referred to as ‘Centre to Top’ or ‘C to T’. There are some exceptions to this rule where certain road bikes are measured from the centre of the seat tube/top tube join to the centre of the crank axle, this measurement is commonly known as ‘Centre to Centre’ or ‘C to C’.
Although most frame sizes are based on this seat tube length, all frame dimensions change from size to size. Road bikes with sloping top tube geometry can be measured either on the actual seat tube length or a theoretical seat tube length based on a measurement to a virtual horizontal top tube. All sizes below are based on this theoretical measurement. On full suspension mountain bikes, jump bikes and road bikes with sloping geometry many riders prefer to choose their size based on top tube length as standover heights and effective seat tube lengths can be similar across certain sizes.
Frame sizes can be quoted in a variety of formats by manufacturers including inches, centimetres and a XS, S, M, L, XL format. Detailed sizing charts are included on most of the bike product pages and are specific to each model, use these in conjunction with the tables below to determine your ideal size.
If you are in any doubt as to which size to choose please contact one of our technical sales team on 0844 499 5656 (+44 1978 660003 from overseas) or visit our showroom. Whichever method you choose our team will be happy to help you in your selection.
The Right Size Bike For You
As a guide for our customers we provide a suggested inside leg length for the various frame sizes available. Please ensure you accurately measure your inside leg with no shoes on, don’t use your trouser leg length. If your inside leg measurement falls in between frame sizes we recommend using your reach to decide which frame size to choose.
Reach can accurately be measured by your ‘Ape Factor’, this is your arm span minus your height. If the result is a positive number then you have a long reach, if it is negative then you have a shorter reach. Basically if you have a longer reach go for the larger frame size and the smaller size if you have a shorter reach. Women’s specific bikes tend to have a shorter reach compared to an equivalent mens frame size.
Another consideration is the stand over clearance between the top of the top tube and your crotch. It is essential to have suitable clearance when you are stationary. The sizings we have suggested below allow for this clearance and we suggest between 25 and 50mm for road based and hybrid bikes and 50mm to 100mm for mountain bikes. However there are exceptions to this rule, for example some mountain bike riders prefer a smaller frame with greater clearance which will be more responsive and maneuverable off-road.
Use the tables below in conjunction with the specific size charts on each bike’s product page to determine the best size for you. These tables are designed to be used as a guide only, in the end it all comes down to rider preference and riding styles.
If you are in any doubt as to which size to choose please contact one of our technical sales team on 0844 499 5656 (+44 1978 660003 from overseas) or visit our showroom. Either way our team will be happy to help you in your selection.
Mountain Bike Wheel Sizes
Until recently most mountain bikes had 26” wheels, now however there are 3 common sizes available: 26”, 650B/27.5 and 29” so which one should you choose?
26” wheels are the staple wheel size for mountain bikes with the widest choice of wheels and tyres available. If you are baffled by all the different sizes you can’t go wrong with a 26” bike. Many riders still prefer the faster acceleration and nimble handling that a 26” wheel provides. 26” wheels are also stronger making them ideal for heavier riders.
650B wheels, also known as 27.5” are the (relative) new kid on the block, designed to offer the advantages of both the traditional 26” and larger 29” wheel. They are most commonly found on mid travel full suspension bikes and provide great rolling characteristics while still providing good acceleration.
29” wheels, often referred to as 29ers or wagon wheels provide great rolling characteristics and are becoming increasingly popular, especially with taller riders. Proved to be faster point to point than smaller wheels, they are loved by XC and trail riders alike. They are however less nimble than a 26” wheel, slower to accelerate and inherently weaker so they are not suited to all riders.
All three wheel sizes are here to stay so choose which size suits your build, riding style and regular trails the best.
If you are in any doubt as to which wheel size to choose please contact one of our technical sales team on 0844 499 5656 (+44 1978 660003 from overseas) or visit our showroom. Either way our team will be happy to help you in your selection.