Read these 5 Bicycle Frames Tips tips to make your life smarter, better, faster and wiser. Each tip is approved by our Editors and created by expert writers so great we call them Gurus. LifeTips is the place to go when you need to know about Bicycle tips and hundreds of other topics.
Want to calculate the correct bicycle frame size for your body size? The frame size is measured from the seat lug at the top to the center of the bottom bracket. If you divide your height by three, or subtract 9 inches from your inseam length, you'll get your proper frame size.
*While you can compensate for a smaller frame with a higher seat and headset, you should never make do with a too large frame that doesn't allow adequate groin clearance when straddling the bike – the consequences are much too painful.
Given the beatings we often give our bikes on the road or trail, we tend to take for granted the strength of our frames. In many ways, however, they are fragile and need special care. You should never clamp anything down on the finished surface of your bike frame (if you need to clamp your bicycle for storing, repairing or for transport, clamp the seatpost, wheels and fork tips).
*It's not just the paint you need to worry about—many clamping devices apply a great enough pressure to dent or break lightweight tubing.
Think before you add to your bike. Modified and customized bicycles seem more the norm these days than off-the-shelf ones. As we strive for greater comfort and performance, it's not unusual to change and add to our bikes.
*Before you blithely touch the frame of your bike, consider the fact that if you modify your frame in any way, it will most likely void your warranty.
Don't throw your investment away! You've invested a good deal of money in a bicycle frame—you should maintain it. Not taking care of your bike will eventually ruin it.
Without proper lubrication, your bike will corrode and work poorly. So, after you wash your bike, lubricate the chain, derailleur, brake pivots, and any place where cables enter of exit housings (don't neglect to wipe off all excess oil).
Bicycle frames are generally constructed out of steel, aluminum or titanium. Each type of frame has its own benefits and drawbacks to weigh:
• Aluminum frames are light and flexible, but won't survive an impact well
• Steel frames are less flexible, but will survive an impact better than aluminum
• Titanium bicyle frames are generally a durable choice all around, but is the most costly of the three
*Before buying a frame, make a list of the things that are most important to you. Use online resources to find further information on specific frame types and don't make a rushed decision (you're likely to have your frame for a while).