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SIZING DOWN WHEN YOU GET A NEW BIKE


Lee – So I played around with the RAD calculator at the Lee Likes Bikes MTB School for my Pivot LES and proposed rocky Mountain Element. Both bikes on the small come out spot on for the RAD but the reach and rise are too short and tall respectively for the bikes compared to the calculations using the XC or Trail setting, so I end up with more of an Enduro setup.

The Rocky Mountain size guide has me on the end of small or beginning of medium and one of the Michigan shops I called recommends sizing up. However when I enter the dimensions for the M Element frame in the RideLogic™ bike calculator, the RAD gets too big. In the comment section you say the RAD is more important than reach/rise in terms of priority. Any additional thoughts?

Scott B


Scott!

Thanks for reaching out, and for being a member of the Lee Likes Bikes MTB School.

The core tenant of the RideLogic™ Bike Setup Method is matching the distance between your bike’s bottom bracket and grips to the distance between your feet and hands. This is called the Rider Area Distance. Since I’m in charge, I call it the RAD.


Rider Area Distance (RAD).

The secondary measurement is Rider Area Angle in Degrees (RAAD). This is the angle of your RAD compared with level. RAAD tends to vary with the type of bike. Low RAAD for an XC race bike; high RAAD for a downhill bike.


Rider Area Angle in Degrees (RAAD).

In my experience, RAD is most important measurement by a mile. Any bike with a perfect RAD and a reasonable RAAD rides great.

If you go for the larger frame, the reach can be so long it’s hard to get a short enough RAD. If you can get the RAD correct, the RAAD will end up low, and you’ll end up with a bike with a long, “XC” feeling cockpit. For most riders this will not feel good, especially on fun terrain. In my work with lots of folks, almost everyone, no matter their riding style, prefers a higher RAAD like you find on an enduro bike.

Modern bikes are getting longer and longer. More specifically, their reaches (horizontal distance from bottom bracket to top of head tube) are getting longer. In many cases, the stacks (vertical distance from bottom bracket to head tube) are also getting higher. It’s very common that riders need to “size down.”

Everyone: Before you buy a bike, plug your numbers and your bike’s numbers into the RideLogic™ calculators. They are available, along with tons of great skills lessons, with a Lee Likes Bikes MTB School membership. You can use the same calculators, and the RideLogic™ on-bike test, to dial in your current bike.

My new medium 2017 Enduro, which is amazing, is 20mm longer than my medium Stumpy. While I got the Enduro’s RAD within a few millimeters of perfect, the cockpit is too long for me, and it’s giving me a hard time. If my shoulders were healthy it wouldn’t be such a big deal, but this is hurting me so much that I think I’m going to return the free bike and try to get a small.


2017 Specialzied Enduro Öhlins Coil. This is an awesome, amazing, impressive machine! It’s just a bit long for me.

I hope that helps,

Lee


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May 4, 2017 : Posted In: Ask Lee,Equipment,Tech tips : Comments (2)


WHAT HAPPENS WHEN YOU ADD FORK TRAVEL?


Warning: For serious MTB nerds.

Lately I’ve been doing a lot of RideLogic™ bike setup consultations for members of the Lee Likes Bikes MTB School.

The school has a simple method and detailed calculators to help you dial in your bike for your body and riding style. One service I offer members is a $49 consultation. You tell me what you’re trying to achieve, and I do the calculations for you. This is a great way to dial in your current bike or choose your next bike—with total confidence. A lot of people spend thousands of dollars on bikes that don’t fit them. Not cool!

To run the RideLogic™ calculations I need accurate head angle and frame reach/stack numbers. When people install longer-than-stock forks, those numbers change, so I have to do some pre-calculation calculations.

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February 24, 2017 : Posted In: Equipment,Tech tips : Comments (1)


AIR PRESSURE FOR 6FATTIE (27.5 PLUS) TIRES


This comment was posted on Two rides on a Specialized Fuse Expert 6Fattie

I rode the Stumpjumper 6Fattie and thought it was fun on the technical climbs, I loved the way it leveled the trail trash. As soon as I pointed it down a rocky technical descent I felt like I was sledding on a tractor inner tube. The bike was bouncing all over the trail, no precision with the undamped bounce from the tires. I literally bounced off my line at one point and almost ate it.

I had pressure set at 14F/15R and did not experiment with it. Who knows what pressure I really had as it seems all gauges read differently. Anyway I wonder how more pressure would have made things feel. I felt the tires folding in turns when pushing hard too.

Ron

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October 13, 2016 : Posted In: Ask Lee,Equipment,Tech tips : Comments (5)


THINKING CRITICALLY ABOUT BIKE-GEOMETRY BS


This press release on Pinkbike about Ragley’s 2017 line contains an explanation of Ragley’s geometry.

I like Pinkbike, and Ragley strikes me as a cool company that makes awesome bikes. That said, we’re hearing similar geometry claims more and more, and I don’t think they all make sense.

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August 29, 2016 : Posted In: Equipment,Tech tips : Comments (15)


OHLINS SUSPENSION AND A STUMPY 6FATTIE FOR ENDURO?


Hi Lee, two more questions about the stumpjumper fsr 6 fattie, What do you think of the Ohlin shocks? and do you think it would be a good enduro bike I am planning on tackling a few enduro races, I currently have the camber with a 130 mm rockshox pike on the front and love this bike but not sure it can handle enduro racing.

Thomas

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August 12, 2016 : Posted In: Ask Lee,Equipment,Reviews,Tech tips : Comments (6)


CIRCLING BACK TO CRANK LENGTH


Ha, circling.

A couple months ago we talked about shortening cranks for improved pedaling and shredding: Shorter cranks for my Stumpy EVO?

Since then I’ve been thinking about crank length as is relates to leg length and biomechanics. And then our friend Anne sent in this question:

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March 6, 2015 : Posted In: Ask Lee,Equipment,Tech tips : Comments (10)


ARE YOU STRONG ENOUGH FOR A 1×11 DRIVETRAIN?


1×11 drivetrains are all the rage. They promise to be simpler, lighter and more hardcore than multi-ring setups.

But is the lowest gear low enough for you?

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January 24, 2015 : Posted In: Equipment,Tech tips : Comments (36)


SHORTER CRANKS FOR MY STUMPY EVO?


Hey Lee,

Happy new year! Quick question: Am I crazy for wanting to put 165mm cranks on my new Specialized Stumpjumper EVO? My inseam is 32 inches, and I ride aggressive trail, with some XC racing. I hope to squeeze in more pedal strokes in these tight Squamish trails, have more ground clearance and hopefully increase my average wattage by spinning a smaller, faster circle. What are your thoughts?

Nathan

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January 5, 2015 : Posted In: Ask Lee,Tech tips : Comments (17)


CALCULATE GEAR INCHES LIKE YOU GIVE A F#$%


Traditional gear-inch calculations divide chainring by cog, then multiply by wheel diameter. The resulting number lets you compare gearing combinations, but it has no bearing on real life.

If you’re gonna be a nerd, be an informed nerd.

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January 2, 2015 : Posted In: Tech tips : Comments (7)


SHOCK UPGRADE FOR 2011 SPECIALIZED ENDURO?


Hi Lee

I’m the happy owner of a 2011 Specialized Enduro Expert (and of her sister Big Hit 2008) and i love her. i wanted to ask you a suggestion, since i would like to upgrade my FOX RP23 shock to something more beefy. I’m a heavy rider and sometimes i feel the rear end not tracking perfectly the ground. This happens only on long rocky and messy descents (i ride in the Dolomites).

Now i know that specialized uses a proprietary shock size and pivot to attach the shock to the frame, and i wondered if you came with a solution for this.

Thank you for your time, i loved your Mastering MTB skills ;)

Francesco

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August 28, 2014 : Posted In: Ask Lee,Tech tips : Comments (0)


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