Biking is not a feeling of pleasure if your bike isn’t the right sized one.
Riding bicycles may be the healthiest of transportation, both for us and nature. Also, biking can be the reason of creating severe health issues only because of the problem of its measurement.
We all are not of the same height or size; every individual of us are different in height and measurement. As we all are not of same size, how can be all the bikes are the same in size?
Bikes come with different sizes and measurements also for different sized people. Manufacturers, by taking their responsibility seriously for their customers, are making these different sized bikes.
Now, it’s our duty to choose the right one without having the proper knowledge, which is nearly impossible to do.
So, we are with the techniques and formulas to help you out to measure your bike frame and to make you buy the perfect sized bike for you. The manual way and the ready data charts both are included to help you to go on your way.
Things to know must
Before approaching towards your journey to know how to measure a bike frame, there are certain important things to know about.
About the bike types and about the bike parts are very important to know. Bikes are available in many types. Different types for different reasons.
To take a decision to buy one of them to know the bikes fit is a must. From all of these types, the Road bikes and Mountain bikes need the most perfect measurement as those are used in pro levels.
Cross bikes are also used at pro-level, but as they are the hybrids of road bikes and mountain bikes, their measurements are the same.
You may ask, BMX bikes are also used in pro levels, what about their sizing? Yes, sizing BMX’s perfectly is also very important. But in this case, we prefer you to go to the charts directly.
Cruiser bikes are leisure bikes. They have no use in pro-levels. Their sizing is depended directly on your trial comfort.
Now, another very important thing which cannot be ignored is the anatomy of the bike. To measure the frame first to know about every part of it.
The most important parts to know on a bike frame are:
The reachability of the legs of the rider depends on the perfect measurement of the seat tube. Starting from the bottom bracket to below to the saddle is the seat tube.
From the saddle joint to the joint of the handlebar is the top tube. The perfect reach of the rider’s arm depends on this part of the bike frame.
It directly functions with the positioning of the handlebar of the bike below the handlebars, which jointer joints the wheels to the frame.
Body parts need to be measured
Words are getting more and more, but saying them is necessary when it is all about bike frame measurement. Earlier, we have discussed only the types and important parts of the bike frame. To know which was very important for measuring bikes.
As we know, bike riding directly functions with our body parts. To measure some of the body parts is also very much important. The parts of our body that needs to be measured are:
The height of the rider’s body is a direct functional fact with the bike. To have a perfect measurement, it is important to have a perfect measurement of height.
It is the most important part of the rider’s body to measure directly relates to the procedure of bike frame measurement.
Inseam is the length of the rider’s very starting of the pubic bone to the down of the feet spreading the leg more or less than 8-inches inside.
How to measure
Now comes the real-time of measurement finally. To measure the bike frame, there are some methods to follow. They are:
Method 1 (with tape)
At first, it is the work directly with the seat tube. It is quite easy. Sometimes the measurement of the seat tube length is written on the body of the bike at the bottom of this tube. If it’s not written, take a measuring tape and measure the seat tube length, as shown in the picture earlier.
The average seat tube of the bike is measured from 48-62 cm. Less than 48cm is for the shortest of people, and most of the taller people need it above 56cm.
Manually on the measuring tape, you will get the size mostly in inches. In the US, you will get the standard size in centimeters. So, convert the inches to centimeters by multiplying the number with 2.54. Like:
- 17inches* 2.54 = 43.18 centimeters
That means if you get the size 17 inches of your seat tube, it is 43.18 or 43 in centimeters. Now you have got your required bike frame size.
Method 2 (by measuring the inseam length)
It is the most useful and accurate way to determine the perfect measurement of the bike frame. There is a bit more work to get the measurement by this method, but whatever is hard tastes better. So is this method. The result you will get by this method will be the perfect one.
To start it, first, you have to stand straight, spreading your legs 6-8 inches. Then ask someone to take a measuring tape and measure the portion of your inseam perfectly.
The portion inseam is introduced in the earlier segment of this article. Now you have the inseam size in inches. Convert it to centimeter by multiplying it with 2.54.
Then its time to do some maths. If you have the inseam size in your hand, multiply it with 0.7 if you are on an approach to get a road bike and if you want a mountain bike work with 0.66.
(60 cm * 0.7 = 42cm) means if your inseam is 60 cm then 42 cm is the right frame size for you.
(60 cm * 0.66 = 39.6cm) means if your inseam is 60, then you need the bike frame of 40cm.
So, the most accurate way to measure your bike frame is now on your hand. Just work on it.
Frame size charts to help you select yours
Now, its time to make your task easier to choose the right frame size for you. We have just made some short charts for you to help you out with height and frame size matches to the height with the help of experts:
Road biking is the most popular and widely known form of biking. Most of the professional bike races are on a road bike. So, to have a perfect sizing is very important. After knowing the method let’s double-check it with the chart here:
Your Leg Inseam
Suggested Frame Size
|4`10”-5`1”||148-152 cm||24-29”||61-73 cm||47-48 cm||XXS|
|5`1″-5`5″||152-160 cm||25-30”||63-76 cm||49-50 cm||XS|
|5`5″-5`9″||160-168 cm||26-31”||66-78 cm||51-54 cm||S|
|5`9″-6`0″||168-175 cm||27-32”||68-81 cm||54-56 cm||M|
|6`0″-6`3″||175-183 cm||28-33”||71-83 cm||58-60 cm||L|
|6`1″+||183-191 cm||29”+||73 cm+||62 cm+||XL+|
Mountain biking is the most fun and dangerous type of biking. Only because of doing a little mistake when choosing the right frame size can lead to severe health injuries. So the chart is here:
Your Leg Inseam
Suggested Frame Size
|4`10”-5`1”||148-158 cm||24-29”||61-73 cm||14″||XS|
|5`1″-5`5″||158-168 cm||25-30”||63-76 cm||15” / 16″||S|
|5`5″-5`9″||168-178 cm||26-31”||66-78 cm||16” / 17″||M|
|5`9″-6`0″||178-185 cm||27-32”||68-81 cm||17″ / 18″||L|
|6`0″-6`3″||185-193 cm||28-33”||71-83 cm||18″ / 19″||XL|
|6`1″+||193 cm+||29”+||73 cm+||20”+||XXL+|
Cross bikes can be called hybrids, and riding them is fun as well as tricky as the mountain biking. So get the perfect one by having a look at the chart here:
Your Leg Inseam
Suggested Frame Size
|4`10”-5`1”||147-155 cm||24-29”||61 - 73 cm||14″||XS|
|5`1″-5`5″||155-165 cm||25-30”||63 - 76 cm||15”||S|
|5`5″-5`9″||165-175 cm||26-31”||66 - 78 cm||16”||M|
|5`9″-6`0″||175-183 cm||27-32”||68 - 81 cm||17″||L|
|6`0″-6`3″||183-191 cm||28-33”||71 - 83 cm||18″||XL|
|6`1″+||191 cm+||29”+||73 cm+||19”||XXL+|
Trickiest of all and fun than others are the BMX’s. They are the bike to do tricks, not for rides. Get yourself the right sized one does do the tricks perfect with the help of this chart here:
Suggested Race BMX Size
Suggested Park BMX Size
|< 4’4”||< 132 cm|
|4`2” - 4`10”||127-148 cm|
|4’6″ - 5’1″||137 – 155 cm|
|20” Wheel 18 - 19.5” top tube|
|20” Wheel 19.5 - 20.25” top tube|
|5`2″-5`6″||157 - 168 cm|
|20” Wheel 20.25 – 20.5” top tube|
|20” Wheel 20.5 – 20.75” top tube|
|5`7″-6`0″||170 - 183 cm|
|20” Wheel 20.75 – 21” top tube|
|20” Wheel 21”+ top tube|
The superman’s bike and hardest to play these bikes are. Very tough is the competition with them. So, the right size is the must requirement when choosing a triathlon. Let’s have it with the chart here:
Suggested Triathlon Frame Size
|Feet & Inches||Centimeters||Frame Size (cm)||Frame Size|
|4`10”- 5`0”||148 cm - 152 cm||47 cm - 48 cm||XX-Small|
|5`0″- 5`3″||152 cm - 160 cm||49 cm - 50 cm||X-Small|
|5`3″- 5`6″||160 cm - 168 cm||51 cm - 53 cm||Small|
|5`6″- 5`9″||168 cm - 175 cm||54 cm - 55 cm||Medium|
|5`9″- 6`0″||175 cm -183 cm||56 cm - 58 cm||Large|
|6`0″- 6`3″||183 cm -191 cm||58 cm - 60 cm||X-Large|
|6`3″ - 6`6″||191 cm - 198 cm||61 cm - 63 cm||XX-Large|
Taylor is an outdoors & sports equipment specialist, sports author, bike traveler, bicycling and skating expert, and smoke-free ride activist. He is also a regular reviewer of outdoor sports gadgets and accessories. About safety gear and biking facts he analyzes and gives his feedback to outdoorxsports. Writes and tests to help him, you, and us.