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Longtime lurker, first-time poster. My frame is cracked and I have mostly decent parts so I am thinking about just buying a frameset and paying the LBS to move stuff over. A friend suggested I look into steel frames since I want a metal frame and don't race a ton, climb hills and long distance. After Googling I am now enamored with the Ritchey Road Logic frame. But the closest dealer is 200+ miles away. So now my challenge is to buy this frame online in the right size.

Height: 6-6'1"

Inseam: ~31.5", 800 mm

Current bike stack/reach: roughly 570 mm, 400 mm; not provided by the manufacturer).

According to the Ritchey guide that would put me at roughly a 55 cm frame (stack/reach 567/395). The next size down (53 cm) is 549/391, and the size up (57 cm) is 587/401. Current non-Ritchey bike is a 53 cm.

The head tube and seat tube angles mostly match up with my current bike, less than ~1 degree difference. The standover height (797) is 20 mm higher on the Ritchey but that's probably because my bike has a sloped top tube. But the 53 cm is closer to my current bike.

So two questions:

  1. What else can I compare between the measurements to make sure 55 cm is more or less in the ballpark of what I need? Should I aim for smaller?
  2. What's easier frame-wise to make adjustments with as far as stem length/angle/saddle position? Sizing up or down?

Many thanks.

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    Do you still have the old frame? Can you measure its size, compare a photo of the new frame to the old one to see what the differences are? Also remember that many things have changed, and your old parts may not fit the new bike. Seatpost sizes for example, or the Bottom Bracket standard-of-the-month.
    – Criggie
    Aug 21 '20 at 4:25
  • Why not order a frame at your LBS? They'll have quite a number of connections and my assist you adequately.
    – Carel
    Aug 21 '20 at 11:39
  • @Criggie I don't have the new frame, I am trying to size it so I can figure out the correct frame to purchase. So I'm not exactly sure what to make of your comment. The entire point of using a frameset is because I can move over parts. So I started with that consideration.
    – GoMon
    Aug 21 '20 at 15:16
  • @Carel the LBS I use has an extremely limited selection of steel frames and only deals with one brand. I live in the middle of nowhere.
    – GoMon
    Aug 21 '20 at 15:18
  • @gomon okay separating that out - the new bike might be too new to accept the parts of the old bike.
    – Criggie
    Aug 21 '20 at 22:33
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I happen to be the exact same size, so I'll answer. I have a custom built road bike with 55cm c-t height and 57cm top tube. I'm using a 120mm horizontal stem and classic drop bars that have more reach than so-called ergo shape at the drops. If I for some reason wanted to have a stem with rise and ergo bars, I'd need even longer and lower frame. The 55cm Ritchey is a bit shorter and has a bit taller head tube but isn't that far off.

So, if you absolutely have to buy Ritchey, 55cm is probably the correct one unless know that your current frame fits perfectly and you want to change as little as possible.

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  1. I've found ordering frames measured based on stack and reach have yielded the best results vs. using a height chart. I'd also compare bb height and horizontal head tube length as that will also influence your body's position on the new frame vs. old.

  2. Looking at other posts on the subject, sizing down seems to give the most flexibility but it may depend on what you have currently. For example, if your current bike has a 120mm stem you may be able to adjust to a 140 if you need more reach or a 100 if you need less. But, if you are already at 100 going down to 90 will start to limit how much more adjustment you can do. The same logic would apply for saddle position, is it maxed out in the fore or aft positions?

Based on your info it seems like the 55 is the right size but you should measure out the Ritchey's stand-over and make sure there is some room between your crotch and the top tube.

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If your body measurements are accurate, you've got an unusually long torso and short legs for your height, so fitting is going to be a little tricky. 55 cm would be about right for your inseam, but your arms would hang way out in front. The "stack/reach ratio" will tell you how laid out your torso will be on a given bike, and for someone with your build, you'd probably want a low ratio. For reference, a typical endurance bike, which would suit your style of riding but probably not your physique, has a ratio of about 1.5:1. This Ritchey has about 1.43:1, but my guess is you could go lower.

I would not get a smaller bike because your reach would be even more cramped on that.

It's easy to raise/lower a seatpost, and doing so doesn't really change the bike's dynamics. It's harder to lengthen/shorten a stem (since you need to replace it), and that does change the dynamics. There's limited adjustability for raising/lowering a stem, especially if you cut the steerer tube to size.

You might try e-mailing or calling Ritchey to get their advice.

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  • Thanks for reply. Asian build, so short legs. But why would my hands "hang out in front" with the 55 cm frame if it is a near match with my current measurements for stack and reach on my defunct frame? The geometry almost perfectly aligns, only small differences I can see (~10 mm or so, with the exception of a 20mm difference in stand-over). Or am I misinterpreting stack & reach?
    – GoMon
    Aug 21 '20 at 20:51
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    Not having seen you on your old bike I can't really say how you'd sit on it—I'm just going by what the numbers suggest. But if you have a relatively short top tube for your torso, I would expect either that your arms are way out in front or you're in a cramped position.
    – Adam Rice
    Aug 21 '20 at 20:54

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