Choosing The Right Size E Mountain Bike | EMBN How To

Choosing The Right Size E Mountain Bike | EMBN How To

Getting your frame size right is definitely important. Not only does it make riding your E Bike more comfortable, it can make you faster aswell!

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Steve is sharing his insights into E MTB sizing, a topic that is often hotly discussed. The trouble is there are lots of interpretations as to the best way to size a bike to a rider. Hopefully though Steve can shed some light on the topic for you.

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Readers Comments (50)

  1. Geovannie Pargon December 12, 2020 @ 9:16 pm

    *Excellent bike~~>**** Will suit our needs. Very attractive and easy to handle. Light weight yer doesn’t feel weak or flimsy. Did order a gel dear for added comfort.*

  2. Thierry Lerinckx December 12, 2020 @ 9:16 pm

    Aren’t we forgetting that not everybody with the same height has the same arm or leg lenghts? Sometimes when you ‘fall between sizes’ having longer or shorter arms will strongly influence your choice.

  3. Yea but what colour is it

  4. Robert Underwood December 12, 2020 @ 9:17 pm

    Several years ago I bought a specialized from a small bike shop. The salesman told me the frame and wheel sizes were perfect for me. I’m exactly 5”7’. So i just figured he knew what he was talking about. I’ve never enjoyed this bike whatsoever. I live in Germany so I have a lot of hills to climb. And the hills just kicked my ass. I just figured I was out of shape. But even on straight roads I found myself getting winded way too fast. Very frustrating 8-10 years for me with this bike. So I started thinking I need an E-Bike. So a few weeks ago I rented one for a week. I took the best one I could get my hands on. A much larger bike than mine. Probably not a perfect match for me but I took it anyway. So I hop on the bike and start riding without turning the motor on. I’m a very heavy muscular overweight guy. The E-Bike weighs twice as much as my bike. But even riding unassisted, i had absolutely no problems riding this bike. Had no problems hitting 30 KMh and keeping that speed for longer periods of time without even breaking a sweat. So I immediately turned around and went back to the bike shop and asked the salesman why I was able to ride this bike so well. He looked at my bike that I’d left there for some repairs. He says to me, I don’t know who sold you this bike, but you got a rotten service because this bike is simply too small for you sir. The wheels are too small as well causing you to use way too much energy.
    So I spent the next week with this E-Bike and enjoyed every minute of it. Only used the motor for the steep climbs.
    I know from whom I’ll be buying you next bike. Just need four thousand euros. 😱😂😉

  5. Jérôme Wittamer December 12, 2020 @ 9:18 pm

    Very very useful! Thanks.

  6. I worked in bike shops for 20 years, and would add 4 points for people who are unsure about their size

    1. Pay attention to your own measurements and your flexibility. Not everyone is "average" when it comes to leg to torso ratio, women frequently have longer legs. I’m 6’1" but built like Fred Flintstone with short legs and a long torso. I used to work with a woman who was the same height but her legs/inseam were 4" longer. Becuase she had been fit to her bike according to leg length she was riding an extra large (with a very short stem for the late 80’s), where I had the same bike in large with a slightly longer than average 150mm stem (rememember those days :-). If you don’t have average proportions, leg to torso, or have limited flexiblilty, you may need a different size than reccommended solely on height.

    2. Always get sized at more than one shop. If you’re shoping around for different brands this will probably happen by default, but even if you’re looking at 1 bike only try going to more than one store for sizing to see if they agree. I once went into a competitors store and a young salesman tried to sell me a medium and extra large bike within 10 minutes (both were the wrong size), he worked on commission :-(. The best shop to buy from is the one that sizes you properly, and will make parts changes to tune the fit.

    3. Top tube clearance is crucial, full suspension can have a higher bottom bracket, so pay attention to stand over height. A little clearance on the showroom floor is not going to be enough when your out on the trail and have to dissmount on a climb or uneven terrain. If possible check the standover height on an incline.

    4. If you haven’t bought a bike for a long time you may be surpised that a larger size is reccommended 20 years ago I almost always ended up on a large, now I take XL most of the time.

  7. Good concise explanations Steve. As a minor improvement you could have started with whether you think there should be a difference to your conventional bike sizing and fit.

  8. This is very informative and detailed, I am 5’9 my riding style is XC to aggressive. The Intense Tracer and Ibis HD4 has almost a hair of difference in numbers, Which size should I go Medium or large. On both brands I am in between of M and L.
    I am thinking of getting the Large because i think this is more comfortable and stable on longer rides. Just in case it will be too big shorten the stem could do a difference?
    Thanks mate!

  9. Oleg Petelevitch December 12, 2020 @ 9:31 pm

    My seat is on bottom from start ! why would I need one its not in my way up or down works for me !

  10. Steve. Out of interest what is your arm span? Most people have a span equal to their height but some (like me) are much more. At 6 ft my span is 6’ 6” (ape) and whilst that makes me a fast swimmer it certainly isn’t Mr Average when it comes to bike sizing. That and having broad shoulders is why I run 800 bars and the fact that was closer to my off road motorcycle trials bars. Sometimes it is related to what physical dimensions you are or the bike size you get use to. It would be interesting to know what bicycle manufacturers consider Mr or Mrs average dimensions. In other words are Japanese bikes sized differently to Scandinavian ones…

  11. I bought a my KTM Macina Lycan 271 from Merlin after hours and hours of searching for frame sizing and comparing this to my existing bike. The KTM chart shows the FS "S" as ranging between 165cm and 174cm and for once at 170cm I was in the middle of a size not between sizes. I saw an article that said the "average" person has an inside leg 45% of their height. Mine is 48% so I did not want a bike with a too long effective TT and overstretching. Anyway, it fits brilliantly and the KS Levo DX dropper post is only 38mm from the clamp, just enough for a rear light if needed, but perfect for descending…. My road bike is a Carrera "S", I’ve had a great fitting GT Avalache in "M" and also built up an on one Inbred from a 16" frame which is perfect….sizing is weird(just like shoes)- do plenty of research if buying online is my advice….

  12. Thanks Steve, great vid mate. As always.

  13. Oleg Petelevitch December 12, 2020 @ 9:38 pm

    You need to find a good one in Australia its a joke you  get no info only what they want to sell you and no responsibility after !

  14. Hi, thanks for the useful viedeo. Can you please use additionally numers the metric system when you talk about size of the rider. We "Europeans on the continent" do very hard with the sizes in feet and inch. Thanks, Manfred

  15. Great video Steve 👍🏻

  16. "you need to find e-bike shop that has demo fleet so you can try out different size bikes"
    *cries in canyon*

  17. I can understand you trying to help with sizing but I can’t deal with that it’s to difficult , I was never good at maths and I’m old school. So I would have to trust the bike shop and from past experience cause I’m female they think they can just sell you anything, they treat you like you don’t know anything?

  18. johanan puthucheary December 12, 2020 @ 9:41 pm

    Yup,it all depends. Thank you I am 179 cm. been looking at the Levo. The frame size is strange. I think I fit a medium. Any advice please

  19. I have always had problems with bike seat as find it very uncomfortable sitting on a razor blade. Tried gell, springs and gap in middle but nothing helped, i now have two bikes mb with half moon which leans to left or right but friends just laugh at me, and a woosh ebike with a wide saddle with springs and bar has a lever which acts like a spring and it seems to work. All these emb just have razor blade type seats

  20. Trying to get my channel started can you guys subscribe

  21. I respect your matching bike size to male height, but you’re way way off in average for the UK male. I’m 5’8 and considerably shorter than many other guys. Officially, I believe average male height is 5’9-5’10, though it wouldn’t surprise me if it was a bit above 5’10. I do ride a medium size frame. Was riding a small before and it’s just simply not as comfortable!

  22. Like the videos but I ,at 75, ride a touring ebike how about some advce for us.

  23. What do the numbers on the Haibike Models mean.
    I have a Haibike SDuro 4.0 and I have no clue what it means?

  24. There is no right size. Because it’s a bullshit product for fake mountain bikers to ruin human powered trails not built for them. Off road electric mopeds should be blanket banned.

  25. I’m 5 9" looking for a haibike all mtn ten. It comes with a dropper post, so I really need to sit on one to find the right size. Unfortunately they aren’t in great supply so I’m reluctant to order one without trying a one for size. After all it’s not just about how tall you, it’s about body proportion and when you are paying a lot of money for a bike you want it to be right

  26. Debating between a turbo Levo or turbo kenevo for my wife who is 5’0” Is there much difference between those two bikes in a small? I’ve heard the kenevo runs a bit big. She also is used to a 27.5 bike and I’m worried she won’t like a 29’er being so short…

  27. There is very little difference between sizes of mountain bikes other than the reach measurement. Sure, stack varies a little, but seat tube length isn’t designed to "fit" a rider like it is on a road bike. Because of this, traditional sizing names have never made sense, there’s no such thing as a "large" designed to fit a person of a specific height and never has been. Current trends to STOP offering these size names in favor of using "short, long, longer" instead is a huge step forward.

    Also, the suggestion that a rider is "between sizes" is nonsense. Sizing has relatively small increments compared to what riders can easily adapt to. Any given rider can ride a number of sizes greater than one, not less than one.

    Better advice would be to learn how LONG a bike you like for the kind of riding you intend to do, then choose based on that. This isn’t really tied to how tall you are nearly as much as what the nature of the riding is. Considering this, I don’t consider the advice here to be particularly good, although it’s totally consistent with conventional sizing advice.

    There is nothing sadder than a rider who insists that he "always rides a large" and then criticizes a particular bike because it is too short or long for his preferences. Happens all the time, and it only reflects that rider’s failure to understand how to choose the right size for him. Remember that when you read reviews as few "experts" seem to understand this at all.

  28. im only 1.72m tall but my leg length is 87 cm, according to my bodylenght i need size M frame, but according to my legs length i need size XL frame, wich one do i need?

  29. Ellert Ingvi Guðmundsson December 12, 2020 @ 9:57 pm

    Can you please use the metric system? Not mixing it all together,😂🤣 it is simpler að more accurate, and most of the world uses it, thanks for the video 👍

  30. Thank you for pointing out a lot of folks ride a frame that is too small for them. When I got my first properly fitted frame I felt like I’d emerged from a cocoon and flew like the delicate 6’2 butterfly that was trapped inside.

  31. Hi Steve love the show 👍. Just ordered my first e bike spectral on. I’m 5”11 and ordered the size large, didn’t want to be cramped on the bike. Your 6 foot what size spectral on do you ride. Mark from doncaster

  32. Great How about pros and cons if I have bought a too small or a too large e mountain bike. Thanks

  33. Hi guys. Have a question…
    When i go to a bike park, with chair lift, i would like to ride my kenevo without the battery, to have a more light bike to trow around.
    There is any cover to close that hole il the frame that the battery will leave? Thanks and great show

  34. Great show Steve, thank you.

  35. Bike sizing is a minefield. I have generally gone Large being 180cm and tweeked saddle, stem and bars to get a roomy fit with enough weight over the bars for climbs. Ive even made vids to help with sizing, ie me sitting on the bikes. We dont have proper bike shows in Oz to try and limited options so often have to mail order.

  36. So I need a small bike 5.4 ft kids bikes

  37. It’s a real switch from XC or road to a bike that comes with a 30m stem. My large Specialized Epic has a 441 reach with a 100mm stem.

  38. What about Kenevo Large? 455mm reach is not too much comparing to modern non-e-bikes, what about Spec Levo Large ? – 430mm reach !!!

  39. OluCoash Life and Tech December 12, 2020 @ 10:07 pm

    great info but if you could give any advice on a 6’5 tall guy what bike brand shall i look for please. XL does anyone make xxl that you know?

  40. 6 foot four,frame size ??

  41. Steve,I am 6 ft with a 34 inseam. Cant decide between a 2020 Levo expert in Large ( 455 Reach) ) or an XL ( 480 Reach). Appreciate your opinion

  42. Try to be 6’6" to 6’7" and then the ‘fun’ begins! Almost no options, just compromises 🙁

  43. So confusing, I ride an aging specialized pitch pro medium with a reach of 446 and i’m 5’10. i come from a bmx background (many years ago) and i’ve always gone for the smaller option due to the belief i can throw the bike around easier. I decided my next bike (first ebike) would be a large following similar advice, but having ridden a few on our local demo day I found the seat felt too high when it was at its lowest (what i mean is, the post wouldn’t go any lower in the frame but when the dropper was fully extended, it was too high). the only bike I have yet to try is the lapierre Overvolt AM 827I Shimano and looking at the specs the large doesn’t seem that much bigger than the pitch, so maybe this will be the bike/size for me?

  44. Most enjoyable. I’m 6 ft and know I my 6’ 0” needs a large from Moustache (5’ 10” to 6’ 0” in their sizing is medium) but I settled for a secondhand medium size because the price was right. I’ve managed to adjust the fit with 800 bars, longer, 6 degree rise stem and seat in the rails. A bit light on 15 degree climbs on the front end but it works all in all. Large with Moustache would have been spot on. They don’t do an XL. My last Scott had I chosen M would have been unrideable, which certainly proves what is M for one make is L for another.

  45. Jenny Sunderwirth December 12, 2020 @ 10:11 pm

    Half of the population is generally female, as am I. I am 5’2" with short legs. When I go into the shop, there’s exactly one bicycle that is "small" and I am forced to either buy it or leave. I keep pleading with shops and dealers to address the female issue. The Asian average height is shorter than the US/UK. We need to not just SHRINK IT, PINK IT. Hope you do a video for ME. thanks

  46. A few months ago, I bought a ’17 Trek Marlin 7, medium sized. According to the charts, based on my height (5′ 10.5"/178cm), it said my bike size should be large, as you stated. Unfortunately, my bike shop had no large sizes in stock. I did test ride the 7 and it seemed to fit OK and I got it for a really great price. It has a 70mm stem and I moved the seat all the way back (about 22mm) and it seems to fit well.

    However, I wonder if it might be worthwhile to get a large Merlin frame and transfer the parts to it. I may pop in to my shop and test ride a 7 with a large frame to see if it feels better. If it does, do you think I should make the swap? Like I said, the medium sized 7 I have now feels find and I’m use to it but I’m always looking for ways to improve the ride. Great video. Thanks.

  47. wish I had seen this vid before I bought My Focus Jam 2 …..Thought I was buying from a reputable retailer who would give me reliable info but now I realise they were just trying to shift stock..
    I keep feeling the bike is a bit too small as I keep pushing back to the rear of the saddle (I am 5’10 and its a M frame . Focus chart shows me crossing both M and L)
    would a longer stem help?
    Love the show and have learned a lot.

  48. Adam Pike Collegeman December 12, 2020 @ 10:13 pm

    look at these diy powerful batteries and diy 1 hour chargers..

  49. Great chanal, I am only 5 foot 5inch what size is good for me please
    David from Queensbury

  50. Guillaume Verhaeghe December 12, 2020 @ 10:13 pm

    Hi Steve – Have you had the chance to ride both L and XL Levo ? I am 6"1 and hesitating between L and XL on the 2019 model. I am thinking 29ers will make the bike feel even bigger if I go for XL… thanks for your lights – Guillaume in Romania

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