Rider weight limits?

General cycling advice ( NOT technical ! )
Darkman
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Joined: 30 Aug 2019, 8:46pm

Rider weight limits?

Postby Darkman » 30 Aug 2019, 8:55pm

Hello

A few months ago something happened and I said to myself; "right, time to sort this out".

So I set about eating better, walking more, and I've dropped nearly 40lb in 3 months. Trouble is I now have plantar fasciitis which makes walking painful. So I've dug the mountain bike out, fixed it up, and been going on that.

Which brings me to my question; I might fancy a road bike at some point in the future. I don't see any with specified weight limits but I guess there must be one! What weight should I be looking to reach before I can reasonably consider a road bike?

brynpoeth
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Re: Rider weight limits?

Postby brynpoeth » 31 Aug 2019, 8:24am

You have lost 40 lb but you do not disclose what you weigh now, please quote in kilos :wink:
This subject has been mentioned here before, try searching these fora
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pwa
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Re: Rider weight limits?

Postby pwa » 31 Aug 2019, 8:36am

Off the top of my head, I think it becomes easier to stay within what manufacturers recommend if you get to 120kg or less. Well done on your progress.

David9694
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Re: Rider weight limits?

Postby David9694 » 31 Aug 2019, 8:38am

How much do you weigh now? how old, how tall?

You might be able to change the mtb’s tyres - if you’ve got big knobbly ones currently, you could get thinner, smoother ones which will run better on roads. Regularly Pedalling a Boris bike from Paddington to Camden and back for a few months helped me to get fit a few years back.

You might want to consider a touring bike in the first instance, if you’re worried you’re still on the heavy side? Others will no doubt comment, but I think where weight overload shows up first is in the rear wheel - you may need one of the more chunky rims and a 36h spoke count. This is likely to flex less - too much flexing and individual spokes will break, as has happened to me - it’s not a breakdown situation in my experience.

pwa
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Re: Rider weight limits?

Postby pwa » 31 Aug 2019, 8:52am

I agree with David. Perhaps stick with the MTB for a while, then if you are still a bit heavy for the lighter road bikes you could consider a stronger design of bike with stronger wheels. The very light bikes aren't all that much lighter when they have a heavy lump like me sat on them.

pwa
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Re: Rider weight limits?

Postby pwa » 31 Aug 2019, 9:01am

After a very quick search I have found an example of a weight limit for a carbon framed road bike. 125kg. I know nothing about this bike and it is expensive, so I'm not recommending it, but it gives an idea of the weight limit.

https://www.trekbikes.com/gb/en_GB/bike ... sComponent

Darkman
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Joined: 30 Aug 2019, 8:46pm

Re: Rider weight limits?

Postby Darkman » 31 Aug 2019, 12:54pm

Hello!

Erm.... :? According to my calculator (at 44 I still work in "old money") I'm 128Kg now (down from 146Kg). So probably still a little way to go before a road bike won't laugh at me. :mrgreen:

I'm currently riding a full suspension Diamondback Outlook mountain bike that I bought second hand about twelve years ago, and never really used. I've already replaced the bars for ones with a 50mm rise as I hated the flat bar that was on it, as well as adding Ergon GP2 grips. It also had a bent chainring so just replaced the whole crankset and chain.

It rides OK, but I feel like when I'm pedalling, a lot of the downward pressure gets lost in the suspension and I've already got it on as firm a setting as it'll go so I'm more inclined to go for a hardtail I think. The other thing is the gears. It's a 3x7 and while the range is nice for off-road, it's a bit laborious on roads where I'd like to get a bit more speed out of it. My GPS tracker reckons about 14mph is as good as it gets. But I guess that you can put some of that down to the weight it's carrying and rolling resistance from the wider tyres, hence thinking about road bikes. But then thinner tires equals higher pressure needed? I run my current tyres (26" tubed) at ~45-50PSI.

Brucey
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Re: Rider weight limits?

Postby Brucey » 31 Aug 2019, 1:01pm

lots of pressure required in skinny tyres if you want to inflate them in a sensible way

https://www.renehersecycles.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/03/BQTireDrop.pdf

practically speaking if you weigh 128kg then 28mm tyres may be about as narrow as you can go; otherwise you will greatly exceed the maximum pressure rating in the rear tyre.

cheers
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~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~Brucey~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

pwa
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Re: Rider weight limits?

Postby pwa » 31 Aug 2019, 1:10pm

128kg is very close to getting you within what Trek recommend for that bike, as an example, so not far off at all.

Losing the suspension is very wise for mostly road or smooth track riding. That bouncing around will be costing you speed or effort. You are right about that.

But do you really want a drop bar road race bike? If you do, fine, but there are numerous other styles of bike that might suit your needs better. For example, there are road bikes with straight bars, which may allow you to sit more comfortably if you haven't done a huge amount of cycling recently. Whatever type of bike you go for, make sure you sit on it and make sure you can get fairly comfy. Avoid anything that makes you feel stretched out.

You could look out for a relatively cheap second hand bike as a half step towards something posher later on when you have even less weight to worry about and a clearer idea about what you need.

Edit. Brucey's point about tyres narrower than 28mm means that you may be better off with a bike that can take wider tyres of 28mm or more. Many of the "road style" bikes in that category are now sold as "gravel bikes", being drop bar and disc brake. The disc brakes mean wider tyres are possible. If you feel drawn to sporty road bikes you might want to look at gravel bikes for that reason.

Darkman
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Re: Rider weight limits?

Postby Darkman » 31 Aug 2019, 1:36pm

No I'm not sure I really want drop bars! Haven't ridden one since I was in my teens. It's just something I thought about for the long-term as I don't want to get an el-cheapo Carrera thing from Halfords, and I don't want to spend silly money either. I'd rather spend more on a "budget" Specialized or Trek, even if it's two or three times what the aforementioned would cost.

I did a 7K ride last night, mostly on dirt trails, and averaged 7.7mph. Probably isn't much to you lot but three months ago I couldn't even walk upstairs without getting out of breath and riding that far at that speed... it was never gonna happen. But the more I do it, the further I want to go. I feel like I get more out of it than just walking.

I think my best option might be to stick with the mountain bike for now but I'm def going to look into replacing the tyres with something a little more road-friendly. Not sure on rim width but I think the current tyres are Kenda 2.35s and pretty sure they came with the bike when it was new.

Any recommendations for a good all-round (sic) tyre leaning slightly towards road use?

pwa
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Re: Rider weight limits?

Postby pwa » 31 Aug 2019, 1:41pm

Regarding your current bike, sometimes even on cheap suspension bikes there is a way of stiffening up the suspension to minimise bounce. And if there is, it costs nothing and you could do it now.

If you like riding trails and think you will continue doing that, perhaps you want a hard tail mountain bike with tyres that can do road and trails. Not my area of expertise but I know such things do exist.

Darkman
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Re: Rider weight limits?

Postby Darkman » 31 Aug 2019, 1:52pm

Yeah I'd definitely like to lose the rear suspension. I did look into that as a possibility but apparently, if I were to remove the spring and replace it with some sort of rigid structure, it'd put load on other parts of the frame that it wasn't designed to take. I also thought about replacing the rear shock for something with a firmer setup but that'd cost me ~£150 and I'm well on the way to just buying a new bike then. With this bike being as old as it is, I'm not sure throwing big money at it is the way I want to go.

The other thing is, 26" wheels seem to be a dying breed so I may be as well just letting this bike go "as is", and investing in either a 27.5 or 29 hardtail.

Quite liking the Trek Marlin 7 (except the choice of colours :? ) and Specialized Pitch Expert. Similar price at around £500-550 and seem to have decent reviews.

PH
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Re: Rider weight limits?

Postby PH » 31 Aug 2019, 2:13pm

Darkman wrote:I did a 7K ride last night, mostly on dirt trails, and averaged 7.7mph. Probably isn't much to you lot but three months ago I couldn't even walk upstairs without getting out of breath and riding that far at that speed... it was never gonna happen. But the more I do it, the further I want to go. I feel like I get more out of it than just walking.

Good stuff. Been there done that, after riding my first bike for 20 years the 4 flat miles home I had to sit down for half an hour before climbing the stairs to my flat. A few months later I was riding the six miles along the river to a country park and my long term ambition was to be able to ride there and back without needing a rest in between. Six months later I rode my first 50 miles and shortly after that my first multi day tour. The great thing about cycling is how quickly you can increase it without overdoing it.
Hope you find a bike you like.
EDIT - Meant to say, rode loads of bikes when I was, in ignorance, well over the maximum rider weight, never had an issue, I think these things are necessarily conservative. Someone 20kg lighter hammering a MTB on serious off road is more likely to break it than the heavier riders taking it easy on some reasonable tracks.

rmurphy195
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Re: Rider weight limits?

Postby rmurphy195 » 31 Aug 2019, 3:12pm

I have a very nice tourer that I use, in preferance to a "Road" (i.e. lightweight, high-geared sports bike). I'm not sure what the bike's weight capacity is, though I suspect it's higher than a "road" bike simply because its meant to take laden panniers front and rear!

The wheels, however, have thier own weight limit - they are Mavic Aksium 1 disc wheels, and according to the blurb that came with them their capacity is 120kg. I'm about 80kg +/-, plus the bike and normal shopping/day trip stuff etc. puts me well within the limit for the wheels.

PS congrats on your progress - I started out at age c40 riding a mountain bike up and down the garden path, then around the block once, then twice, then a bigger circuit (up to a mile - wow) once, the twice, and built things up as you are now. Hard work - some of it after dark so the neighbours couldn't see me! - but almost 20 years later I know the benefits!

MOST IMPORTANT THINGS - if you are thinking of a new bike, get what takes your fancy or always wanted since you were a lad (in my case, a Dawes Galaxy, and colour does matter!), have gears low enough to puff your way back home no matter how tired you are, mudguards for the rainy weather and a pannier or saddlebag rack to carry your bits and pieces 'cos rucksacks get uncomfortable after a bit :D
Brompton, Condor Heritage, creaky joints and grey hair
""You know you're getting old when it's easier to ride a bike than to get on and off it" - quote from observant jogger !

Darkman
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Re: Rider weight limits?

Postby Darkman » 31 Aug 2019, 3:24pm

Yeah that's a very good point. I like to stick to fairly solid ground. The worst I really hit is dried out muddy tractor tracks.

Somebody 30Kg lighter than me that likes bouncing over rocks is going to be putting the bike under just as much load, if not more.

Suppose manufacturers do have to be quite conservative with their ratings though.

I was looking for local bike rides for charity etc the other night and found one for the Alzheimer's Society from London to Paris. Would love to get to the stage where I can do that!

I have a saddle bag, but don't carry anything on my back. I used to have a motorbike years ago and brother in laws mate had a horrible accident carrying his bike lock in a rucksack. Anyway, he came off, landed on his back, pushing three vertebrae sideways and stretching his spinal cord. Last saw him at the MotoGP in 2004 I think and he was in a wheelchair and would never be able to walk again.

I never went on my bike again and sold it soon after. It was a freak accident but it really put me off. Even on a mountain bike I'll only have stuff attached to the bike, not to me.