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Sometimes it looks like people start those topics to justify either old bike that they have or lack of skills that they need to ride modern geo;
Interesting comment about skills. I think many feel the opposite, that these super long slack modern bikes are compensating for a lack of bike handling skills. Longer slacker bikes are much easier to ride down chunky or gnarly descents because they are more stable. It's on the super techy, narrow, windy trails that require better bike handling and which more intermediate riders tend to avoid that a too-long bike reveals its shortcomings.
 

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I liked it. Interesting that the author is within an inch of my height with the same inseam and prefers a bike with a reach between 450 and 475. I checked the geo chart on my Spark, which feels too big, and the reach is 460. So now I'm all sorts of confused. If the author is onto something, I should be right at home on this bike but it feels huge and unwieldy.

I look at as many of these sort of threads as I can to see what I should be riding, but I haven't ever found anything definitive. And good grief, you'd think something like a half inch or an inch of difference wouldn't be such a big deal, but it absolutely can be.

I want to know where to turn to get the dialed-in fit the author mentioned that XC riders have... That's like 98 percent of what I do and 100 percent of what I prefer.
What stem length are you running?
 

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Lee would probably say in this last shot that the bike was too big, because he should be able to pull the bars to his body with no bend in the arms...
No. He'd probably give a virtual high five and then say that you can't really tell much about RAD from the picture, since the rider is bent over a bit and not at full extension.
 

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Sometimes it looks like people start those topics to justify either old bike that they have or lack of skills that they need to ride modern geo;

Modern geometry allows you to to choose 1 of 3 sizes for example person 6’1 could choose M/L/XL or s3/s4/s5 ( per specialized)

Industry offer u great variety, you choose to ride either comfortable or big(small) bike for you skills and trails;
Absolutely agree on both points.
I see people criticize modern trail geo and then I learn their main ride is some Karate Monkey with rigid fork or they only ride old-school xcish trails where endurance plays much bigger role than bike skills... making me wonder if they really know/understand what they are talking about.

If you are experienced rider with developed skills and you know you need a smaller bike - just downsize or look for a bike manufacturer with less radical geometry offerings. There are still plenty of those. Then fine tune everything with stem and handlebar

I believe that modern geo is generally better for a gravity trail riding. And I generally don't believe in universal fitting systems, only in common sense recommendations as a "neutral factory settings" to start with. You need a lot of personal experience and developed skills to dial your fit on the bike. If you don't have those changing frame reach, stem length, handlebar width and rise etc will only feel different but you will have hard times justifying if it right or not.
 

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Absolutely agree on both points.
I see people criticize modern trail geo and then I learn their main ride is some Karate Monkey with rigid fork or they only ride old-school xcish trails where endurance plays much bigger role than bike skills... making me wonder if they really know/understand what they are talking about.
It goes both ways. People that shuttle to the top or ride a fire road up aren't going to understand why someone would want a KM. Doesn't mean either doesn't know what they are taking about or have skill. Not all trails are the same, get the bike that best fits your trails and riding style.
 

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It goes both ways. People that shuttle to the top or ride a fire road up aren't going to understand why someone would want a KM.
I perfectly understand why people want rigid bikes, and I own myself a rigid fat bike I use a lot for adventure-riding, which is basically some twisted form of XC riding. I don't immediately want slacker-longer geo on that bike. But my conclusions doesn't extend to every other mtb bike from the point of owning one bike only which isn't even used in gravity riding.
 

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What stem length are you running?
70mm came with the bike. I've thought about going shorter, but the whole bike itself seems so big, mostly in terms of height and wheelbase. A shorter stem might crisp up the steering, but I assume it wouldn't make the whole bike seem smaller, so I haven't swapped it. And measuring my medium Niner (which I feel like is my Goldilocks bike)... the RAD is within an inch between the two bikes.

I should try a shorter one though. It's a lot easier than getting a new bike.
 

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70mm came with the bike. I've thought about going shorter, but the whole bike itself seems so big, mostly in terms of height and wheelbase. A shorter stem might crisp up the steering, but I assume it wouldn't make the whole bike seem smaller, so I haven't swapped it. And measuring my medium Niner (which I feel like is my Goldilocks bike)... the RAD is within an inch between the two bikes.

I should try a shorter one though. It's a lot easier than getting a new bike.
That's part of the equation. You have to account for stem length in bike sizing. A shorter stem definitely makes the bike feel a bit smaller (may not solve all your issues obviously).
 

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:oops::oops::oops:

If you want 19" chainstays I'm pretty sure Jones is still making frames. ;)
I want a 150-160 travel bike with decent weight distribution. Not the same rear on a front triangle that covers 100mm.
My latest bike was purchased BECAUSE it had extremely long stays and 180mm of travel :).
 

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I'm learning something from these last few posts -- yours, Blatant's, OneSpeed's, and Ocn's.

That "weird fad" seems to be fading hand in hand with the relevance/prevalence of climbing tech trail or descending anything slow/techy enough to be thought of as trialsy. When climbing fireroads or doubletracks -- or shuttling -- CS length matters not. Descending at mach chicken where the answer is usually "go faster and plow" and short stays aren't important.

Horses for courses, sure. My preference is toward trails where 10mm of CS length makes a massive difference. I also tend to see far, far, far fewer people on these trails.

FWIW, I still think your sig is one of the best things ever written on the innernetz.
picking your bike based on needs makes sense, I like short chainstays for these reasons too.

in terms of sizing, I set my bike up to be comfortable and to accentuate my uses.
 

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picking your bike based on needs makes sense, I like short chainstays for these reasons too.

in terms of sizing, I set my bike up to be comfortable and to accentuate my uses.
Yep. I’ve ridden bikes are both ends of the spectrum (too big and too small). The best fitting bikes I’ve ridden was the original Ibis Mojo HD and my current Canfield Balance (DH bikes don’t count, and I’m still breaking in the Tilt). Both have very different geometries, and I wish I took measurements of my HD when I had it.
 

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Yep. I’ve ridden bikes are both ends of the spectrum (too big and too small). The best fitting bikes I’ve ridden was the original Ibis Mojo HD and my current Canfield Balance (DH bikes don’t count, and I’m still breaking in the Tilt). Both have very different geometries, and I wish I took measurements of my HD when I had it.
Stripes is hazing a Tilt! 😁
 

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I noticed bike sizing has changed over the years

I was recently gifted a 2014 Giant composite TCR. It's a size medium. Looking at the NEW Giant charts, my height (I know its an overtly simplified way of sizing the right bike fit but hey it's a gift so I don't have a say on that matter) should be on the lower end of the M fit.

However when I dig up old sizing charts for the bike, it seems like the 2014 M fit is too big for me.

Doing a geometry comparison

TCR Composite 2014 vs TCR 2020 (Both M sizes)
Reach : 392mm vs 383mm
Stack : 566mm vs 545mm
Top Tube : 555mm vs 550mm

Which makes me realize I'm actually stretching myself to fit the 2014 frame since I ride a current S from Giant.


Is this due to marketing or have we gotten larger over the years?
Like It's easier to sell a bike to someone when they walk into the shop and they're like OH YOU'RE AN M rather than telling them they are "small"

Reminds me of the story about how L sized condoms are actually normal.
 

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Stems have gotten shorter too. Don't look at one number and cry marketing.
Depends on the time frame. My 2017 Bronson came with a 50mm stem. Stems haven't gotten much shorter since then, but reach has continued to grow. For example the 2021 model of the same bike has 30mm longer reach in size Medium, but a 42mm stem.
 

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Depends on the time frame. My 2017 Bronson came with a 50mm stem. Stems haven't gotten much shorter since then, but reach has continued to grow. For example the 2021 model of the same bike has 30mm longer reach in size Medium, but a 42mm stem.
Stems are widely available from 32-60mm. You can adjust your reach with those quite easily, and have been for years.

There’s so much more than reach that affects fit: stack height, seat tube angle, BB height, and head tube angle.

People strictly use reach for sizing is short-sighted.
 

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Depends on the time frame. My 2017 Bronson came with a 50mm stem. Stems haven't gotten much shorter since then, but reach has continued to grow. For example the 2021 model of the same bike has 30mm longer reach in size Medium, but a 42mm stem.
My point is lots of things have changed...stems, STA, HTA, etc.

A bunch of riders complained about how undersized Santa Cruz's we're at the time.
Bike companies are giving people what they ask for and this forum has bad habit of revising history and calling everything marketing.
 
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