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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
if you are in between frame sizes/reach measurements, do you generally prefer to size up or down? Riding SS, I would think a smaller reach may help give you more leverage on the bars for climbing, but a longer frame would allow you more movement range while standing up and mashing up long climbs?

I am about 5'10.5-11" and debating between a new hardtail, Spot Rocker, in size M (440mm reach, 75.5 SA, 67 HA) or size L (470mm reach). Tried both sizes briefly, both felt good but different. This is my first bike primarily being used as a SS so wanted to get some input from others with more experience!
 

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Always in the wrong gear
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I prefer to size up, personally.
I'm 5'9",My FS reach is 440, my SS reach is 455.
1) a hardtail's HTA steepens with fork compression and I like to keep the bike in front of me, and not "under me".
2) on an SS, I'm standing and mashing way more, so I spend more time "on the front". I've actually gone OTB really mashing uphill when I got too far forward and stuffed the front into a hole.

A few caveats-
not everyone rides rowdy terrain on an SS, so having "more bike in front of you" may not be a quality you seek. I would not want a long bike for flat, twisty XC stuff.
Not everyone climbs with a heavy front lean, so they may not have a lot of weight on the bars uphill.

at 5'9" I like 450-ish reach numbers. My buddy is 6'1 and rides a 470 reach Banshee, 475mm reach SS. Both his bikes feel too big for me.
 

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Impetus hit it for the most part. also, what kind of terrain for your normal rides? what kind of gearing do you expect to push? some SSers gear way down and sit and spin.

i recently just moved to a more modern-ish SS frame with a 482 reach on an XL frame and 50mm stem. i'm 6'2.5". i definitely appreciate having more room when standing and climbing.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
I have been running 32x20 and plan to stick with that. Think the spot rocker is more like 32x19.5ish with the belt drive.

in terms of terrain, a lot of long, steep climbs, flowy downhills but I also go out of my way to ride more technical climbs, tight trails, etc. Some of the climbs are a pretty constant 5-8 miles of climbing before descending, so a lot of time continuously out of the saddle.

I have never had a more "modern" geo bike really. at 5'11"ish my last two bikes were a 430 reach (full susp) and 450mm reach (honzo set up ss). Both feel fine to me as that is what I am used to riding for the past 4-5 years now, though I am sure there are some benefits to sizing up to a longer reach/wheelbase too. I just do not want to lose the technical climbing control I get with my older bikes!
 

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Large
 

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Not sure if that helps or adds to confusion... but I am actively looking for a single speed frame with updated geo and wanted to share my findings. And I am 5'10.75".

If you have not seen the hardtail party review of the bike, please watch that, so good. Hardtail party guy is 5'6" and rode a med with a 60mm stem. So I can't image being on same size bike.

I asked spot directly about sizing. They said a large. I am still hesitant because the wheelbase and reach are SO much bigger than my Pivot LES (also a large).

However, maybe this is just more about modern/progressive geo. I also ride a size large ibis ripley (fits great) and comparing them on geo-geeks they are not very different: Geometry Geeks

The Stanton Sherpa looks like the perfect geo and they previously had swappable dropouts and one was for single speed, but those dropouts are not in stock.

here is emails I had with Spot:
===================
[Me --> Spot]
Hi,
I am really interested in the Rocker frame as an SS. I am a little hesitant because I come from an XC/Marathon background and the rocker is a slacker, more modern geo than I am accustomed to.

I have been on a Pivot LES SS with 110 fork, and it climbs great, but descends kinda poorly. It rides nervous when things get hairy. I am looking for a little more out of my next bike.

I am 5ft 10.75inches and think I would be on a large in the Rocker. But, looking at the geo chart the reach and wheelbase are intimidating compared to what I have ridden.

But the hardtail-party review of this bike makes me think it is worth the risk. Like it might take a few rides to get familiar with but might be a more capable bike in the long run?

I am just wondering if there is any info or opinions about it that you could share that would help me determine if this is the right bike for me and if the Large right for me.

Thanks for any help,
Jeff

[Spot --> me]
Thanks for the email and information. I totally understand your trepidation. The switch to a more modern geometry is an adjustment to make but I think you’ll be able to do it in a couple rides. We have many other riders coming off of the Pivot Les and they absolutely love the Rocker. I think you’ll gain that downhill stability you’re looking for, without sacrificing any slow speed nimbleness. The short offset forks help with that for sure.

Personally, I knew the geometry would be good because it’s the same as the Ryve 115 and I’ve been riding that for a while. What I was really impressed with was how well it put power to the ground and allowed me to cover miles and vertical at a higher rate. This while being comfortable and not overly stiff. The Rocker strikes an impressive balance!

And yes, go for the large. That is your size.

I hope this all helps. Let me know if you have any other questions.

Thanks!


Paul McClain
 

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Data point:
I got a medium Rocker to replace a small 2011 Salsa El Mariachi Ti (set up SS w/ tensioner). I'm 5'8". The Rocker works better on both ups and downs. My trails are xc oriented with big long climbs and descents, some tight twisty stuff, and some high speed kamikaze stuff.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Not sure if that helps or adds to confusion... but I am actively looking for a single speed frame with updated geo and wanted to share my findings. And I am 5'10.75".

If you have not seen the hardtail party review of the bike, please watch that, so good. Hardtail party guy is 5'6" and rode a med with a 60mm stem. So I can't image being on same size bike.

I asked spot directly about sizing. They said a large. I am still hesitant because the wheelbase and reach are SO much bigger than my Pivot LES (also a large).

However, maybe this is just more about modern/progressive geo. I also ride a size large ibis ripley (fits great) and comparing them on geo-geeks they are not very different: Geometry Geeks

The Stanton Sherpa looks like the perfect geo and they previously had swappable dropouts and one was for single speed, but those dropouts are not in stock.

here is emails I had with Spot:
===================
[Me --> Spot]
Hi,
I am really interested in the Rocker frame as an SS. I am a little hesitant because I come from an XC/Marathon background and the rocker is a slacker, more modern geo than I am accustomed to.

I have been on a Pivot LES SS with 110 fork, and it climbs great, but descends kinda poorly. It rides nervous when things get hairy. I am looking for a little more out of my next bike.

I am 5ft 10.75inches and think I would be on a large in the Rocker. But, looking at the geo chart the reach and wheelbase are intimidating compared to what I have ridden.

But the hardtail-party review of this bike makes me think it is worth the risk. Like it might take a few rides to get familiar with but might be a more capable bike in the long run?

I am just wondering if there is any info or opinions about it that you could share that would help me determine if this is the right bike for me and if the Large right for me.

Thanks for any help,
Jeff

[Spot --> me]
Thanks for the email and information. I totally understand your trepidation. The switch to a more modern geometry is an adjustment to make but I think you’ll be able to do it in a couple rides. We have many other riders coming off of the Pivot Les and they absolutely love the Rocker. I think you’ll gain that downhill stability you’re looking for, without sacrificing any slow speed nimbleness. The short offset forks help with that for sure.

Personally, I knew the geometry would be good because it’s the same as the Ryve 115 and I’ve been riding that for a while. What I was really impressed with was how well it put power to the ground and allowed me to cover miles and vertical at a higher rate. This while being comfortable and not overly stiff. The Rocker strikes an impressive balance!

And yes, go for the large. That is your size.

I hope this all helps. Let me know if you have any other questions.

Thanks!


Paul McClain

Thanks, this is some helpful insight. We are probably similar in size/proportions I would guess. I am about the same height, about 32.5" inseam and 73" wingspan. I am probably just having analysis paralysis - either size would be something I would adapt to just fine, I think its just that the long wheelbase/reach would be very new for me and like you said somewhat intimidating in how different it is.

I have watched the hardtail party review on it, he does a good job with all the bikes he reviews. I also noticed like you said he was on a size M and is fairly short, and on his wife's channel she rode the same bike for one of her videos too I think and I am pretty sure she is even smaller, so I am not sure how I would also fit on there at about 5'11"!
 

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HT party guy has odd limb or torso proportions in case you haven't heard him mention. i think he prefaces it in every bike review.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
HT party guy has odd limb or torso proportions in case you haven't heard him mention. i think he prefaces it in every bike review.
Thanks, you are right and I had forgotten this.

@brownwheel - after I read your message I called spot myself to talk to someone there and get their input on a few component choices too. We talked about sizing for awhile and just to muddy things up, the guy I spoke with said he was 5'11" and rides a M, and suggested I go with a Med as well.
 

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if you are in between frame sizes/reach measurements, do you generally prefer to size up or down? Riding SS, I would think a smaller reach may help give you more leverage on the bars for climbing, but a longer frame would allow you more movement range while standing up and mashing up long climbs?

I am about 5'10.5-11" and debating between a new hardtail, Spot Rocker, in size M (440mm reach, 75.5 SA, 67 HA) or size L (470mm reach). Tried both sizes briefly, both felt good but different. This is my first bike primarily being used as a SS so wanted to get some input from others with more experience!
Frankly, I like the longer frame vs. shorter frame for SS.
 

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Steve has used a Slack-r angleset on the Arc and Chameleon to slacken the 67* head tube angles on those. If you want to do that sometime on the Spot keep in mind it reduces reach a bit.
 

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Combat Wombat
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if you are in between frame sizes/reach measurements, do you generally prefer to size up or down? Riding SS, I would think a smaller reach may help give you more leverage on the bars for climbing, but a longer frame would allow you more movement range while standing up and mashing up long climbs?

I am about 5'10.5-11" and debating between a new hardtail, Spot Rocker, in size M (440mm reach, 75.5 SA, 67 HA) or size L (470mm reach). Tried both sizes briefly, both felt good but different. This is my first bike primarily being used as a SS so wanted to get some input from others with more experience!
A lot of this is going to come down to the terrain you ride, how you gear for the hills and personal preference. Do you intend to gear for the climbs so that you can sit and spin for all but the most difficult inclines and just accept that you will be painfully slow on flats or do you plan to run a more "do-it-all" gear combo? If you are going to gear primarily for the climbs, pick what size frame you would use if running gears. If you are are going for the "do-it-all" and know you will be taking on some difficult inclines where you will be standing and mashing, I would definitely go for the larger frame. Part of that standing and mashing also involves getting up over the bars and using them for leverage. On those hard efforts when you get out of the saddle, if the bars end up down around your stomach, that is not going to offer the optimum place for leverage.

I am between small/medium on most frames and prefer medium. IMHO, no matter what you end up running for gears and since both sizes felt good, I would recommend the large.
 

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Size up is my preference. Just make sure you are good with the overall handling.

Some frame geometries can feel "truckish" and may have a tendency to tip over on tight turns more than others.

Sent from my Pixel 4a using Tapatalk
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
A lot of this is going to come down to the terrain you ride, how you gear for the hills and personal preference. Do you intend to gear for the climbs so that you can sit and spin for all but the most difficult inclines and just accept that you will be painfully slow on flats or do you plan to run a more "do-it-all" gear combo? If you are going to gear primarily for the climbs, pick what size frame you would use if running gears. If you are are going for the "do-it-all" and know you will be taking on some difficult inclines where you will be standing and mashing, I would definitely go for the larger frame. Part of that standing and mashing also involves getting up over the bars and using them for leverage. On those hard efforts when you get out of the saddle, if the bars end up down around your stomach, that is not going to offer the optimum place for leverage.

I am between small/medium on most frames and prefer medium. IMHO, no matter what you end up running for gears and since both sizes felt good, I would recommend the large.

thanks for the input! I am gearing for more all around riding, 32x20 or 32x18 usually. on the bigger climbs around here I do not sit at all, and will climb pretty much the whole time out of the saddle.

your point about the standing and pedaling is interesting, I was thinking that the smaller size frame/reach would put you in a more ideal position for getting leverage on your handlebars while out of the saddle climbing, seeing that the longer reach would put the bars more around your stomach than the shorter reach.

I think that is part of the whole "RAD" measurement that Joy of Bike has been teaching about latley, ultimately their message seemed to be that the shorter reach bikes (which are still longer than the bikes we were riding 5-10 years ago) give you more control and power over the bike due to that optimal bar position.

It is interesting, based on the RAD alone, the med frame Spot Rocker would even be slightly above my recommended RAD (but it is within about 10-15mm).
 

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thanks for the input! I am gearing for more all around riding, 32x20 or 32x18 usually. on the bigger climbs around here I do not sit at all, and will climb pretty much the whole time out of the saddle.

your point about the standing and pedaling is interesting, I was thinking that the smaller size frame/reach would put you in a more ideal position for getting leverage on your handlebars while out of the saddle climbing, seeing that the longer reach would put the bars more around your stomach than the shorter reach.

I think that is part of the whole "RAD" measurement that Joy of Bike has been teaching about latley, ultimately their message seemed to be that the shorter reach bikes (which are still longer than the bikes we were riding 5-10 years ago) give you more control and power over the bike due to that optimal bar position.

It is interesting, based on the RAD alone, the med frame Spot Rocker would even be slightly above my recommended RAD (but it is within about 10-15mm).
How do you get the RAD for a frame?
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
How do you get the RAD for a frame?
I plugged in all the numbers for the Spot frame into the bike geo/fit calculator on Lee Likes Bikes website. so 440mm reach, 621mm stack, 67 HA, etc.

For the other stuff I used the bar/stem that I use on my other bikes, 50mm stem, 35mm riser bars.

This is helpful because I can compare the "projected" RAD of the new Spot bike, to the bikes I currently own and ride regularly.
 

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thanks for the input! I am gearing for more all around riding, 32x20 or 32x18 usually. on the bigger climbs around here I do not sit at all, and will climb pretty much the whole time out of the saddle.

your point about the standing and pedaling is interesting, I was thinking that the smaller size frame/reach would put you in a more ideal position for getting leverage on your handlebars while out of the saddle climbing, seeing that the longer reach would put the bars more around your stomach than the shorter reach.

I think that is part of the whole "RAD" measurement that Joy of Bike has been teaching about latley, ultimately their message seemed to be that the shorter reach bikes (which are still longer than the bikes we were riding 5-10 years ago) give you more control and power over the bike due to that optimal bar position.

It is interesting, based on the RAD alone, the med frame Spot Rocker would even be slightly above my recommended RAD (but it is within about 10-15mm).
Keep in mind the information for "RAD" targets geared bikes. When attacking a steep incline on a geared bike, think about how most riders typically are positioned on the bike.

Here is something interesting written by a gentleman that you can see around MTBR from time to time.
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
Keep in mind the information for "RAD" targets geared bikes. When attacking a steep incline on a geared bike, think about how most riders typically are positioned on the bike.

Here is something interesting written by a gentleman that you can see around MTBR from time to time.
Thanks! Honestly that is a point I had not really considered so I really appreciate the input, definitely a different body position climbing with a SS
 
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