Vintage bike fit


Old School Hero
Ive been tinkering with my flying gate to get comfortable.

Sr fluted seatpost and b17 back as far as possible.
80mm sr stem high as possible
Vintage gb randonneur bars
Mafac levers set quite high.

So this is as good as I've got so far. I feel like I have too much weight on my hands and I'm having to push my arse back and up.

The hooks are cramped for my hands and my elbows have to be very low for braking on descent giving me a pain in the neck.

Im really liking riding the drops which I've not done before and I'm spending most of my time on the hoods. Does that tell me the stem is too short?

Feel like the b17 is trying to throw me forward, tried every angle. I'll put my narrower Brooks back on and see if that helps.

Gonna try deep drop road champion again but I didn't get on with them before but I may have only tried them with 100mm stem. Is it better to have a longer reach bar and shorter stem or vice versa.

Any tips appreciated

Other info, it's a touring model gate so not steep angles. Im pulling a tagalong kids bike most of the time which wrecks the handling!


Senior Retro Guru
My first reaction based on what you're saying is do you have the right sized frame for your body? Have you measured the stack and reach of this frame and compared it to the stack and reach of your other bikes? That might give you some insight into how this bike aligns with your body.

If you really want to keep monkeying around you can get a nitto technomic stem with very long quills in a range of lengths (down to 60mm I believe). There are some new zero reach quill stems being designed as well if you want to really go radical on the reach adjustment (check out analogue cycles in the US). Brooks are renown for having short rails so you could get a saddle with longer rails and see if that helps you get your hind quarters in the right place.


Retro Wizard
I think you are right about the B17. It needs a lot of layback. Then you can get your torso balanced. There are some great threads on the Cycling UK Forum.


Old School Hero
Thanks guys, I've put my trusty old swallow back on and I'll see how that goes. Ive raised the seatpost a few mm too. Im pretty sure the frame is the right size, it's the same seat tube as other bikes I've ridden. Thing is I've not ridden for a few years and in that time ive taken up farming, parenting and house renovation...


Senior Retro Guru
I'd be more concerned about the top tube length than the virtual seat tube length in the sizing game.

Nice bike by the way - very unique frame design.


Old School Hero
16365830134054732742553616482163.jpgthis is where my fingers reach with my elbow on the nose of the saddle. That seems about right doesn't it?