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Recently, on our local bay area cx email list, someone asked about whether folks like the same or smaller sized cx bike compared to their road bike. He didn't specify what he meant by size, so the question and answers were not very specific, since TT lengths vary by brand even for the same size. So you might ride 58s in both but that doesn't mean much to me unless I know the TT length.

But it brings up the age-old question whether you should go slightly shorter on the TT and/or stem. If I remember correctly, in Simon Burney's Cyclocross: Training and Technique, he recommends you should go 1cm shorter in both the stem and TT.

I've played around on many different cx bikes and have been going shorter over the years. That might because I'm getting old and stiff. But I'm curious to hear your experiences.

Molly Cameron has an interesting short post looking at a few photos of rider's positions, alluding to the fact that top riders don't usually have road-like positions.

What do you think?

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I've gone to smaller bikes for racing both CX and road. They feel right. They handle better and have snappier acceleration out of the turns. They're also lighter! I ride the same size frame for road and cross with one size smaller stem and a little less drop on the cross bikes - though I do like a lot of drop on my crosser. I am on the mind that you need to put a more weight on the front (but not too much) to keep it hooked-up in hard driving turns. When discussing reach, you also need consider the drop issue.

I could also use some advice on fitting: I've been eyeing Ridley's but am a little put-off by their sizing. Being short legged and long backed by the time I get something that fits vertically it's so short in the TT I need a boat tiller for a stem. To reach the right TT length on a Ridley I'd have the seat sitting right on top of the tube, and I hate that way that looks as well as the fact that it puts that tube too close to home! I ride a 54 (which the limit of small for me) so it appears that a 50-52 would be my size in a Ridley. For somebody that should really be riding a 55/56 a 50-52 sounds pretty extreme. I don't want to be having toe overlap or knocking the bars with my knees. Anybody have any experience with sizing these bikes? I'd appreciate hearing from someone who has gone from one bike (like a Redline) to the Ridley and what the difference in sizes was. Right now I just don't think these bikes will fit me. I've had the same issue with Cannondale sizing. Damn stubby legs.

I heard Page talking at a UCI race here in Michigan last year and he said Vrevrecken's bike is so small it looks like he's riding a BMX bike ... and that's a Ridley if I'm not mistaken.
Hey Surly Bastard,

As much as I like the Ridley bikes, and they've certainly won their share of races, I think you may want to take advantage of the plethora of cyclocross bikes and frames we now enjoy to find one that fits you well. There are many brands out there that offer better sizing for your type of body. For example, a BMC Cross Machine in size 54 has a 55.1 cm tt, and a 52 has a 54 cm tt. That sounds like it might be a closer fit. Also, you might look at frames with a sloping tt, as that will give you the stand over and seat post extension you might prefer. A Lysnkey has a 54 tt for a size small, with a sloping top tube. That might be a perfect fit. And they're on sale now (full disclosure - lysnkey advertises with us).

I've ridden a bunch of different bikes, and do find the smaller bikes often have more toe overlap issues, but I have size 12 feet and like my cleats pretty far back which makes it worse. It has not affected me in race conditions but has on the trail.

Lemond also makes some long bikes, if you like steel, but they're soon going to be collectors items. Or, you could try custom...if you can afford. You could prob get a custom steel frame for the same price or less than a high-end production frame.
Thanks Andrew ... you're right. A good fit should always be the most important factor in selecting a bike. I'm givin' up on my dreams of rockin' a Ridley. In my case custom would probably be the best route but for two reasons:

1. Higher cost.

2. It would almost impossible to justify buying a new bike next year after investing all that dough in a great bike that fits and performs perfectly.

Kidding aside, I'll check out the Lynskey's a little closer. Didn't know they are on sale ... that's my favorite color in a bike, and they look pretty cool, too.

Thanks again!
sb,

can't remember if you ended up with something, but the lynskeys are now on sale for $1495. that's a pretty good deal on a frame that will last forever.

cheers

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