Bikes for Tall Folks


#1

Do the bike shops in Taipei sell bikes for tall people?

I think I was fed a line from a Giant store in Hsinchu City. All they had were medium frames, and I looked like an idiot trying to ride one. I am not extremely tall, but 187cm. I asked if he could order a large frame and he said “no” and they were unavailable in Taiwan. They would have to order one from the US. What would cost NT$30,000 in TW or the US would instantly cost double or triple that.

The Merida shop said they did not have a bike to fit me and took the attitude of nothing more to see here, now.

So…what say Taipei?


#2

I started this thread a few years back:

Some helpful responses in there.

FWIW, since then I have managed to buy two framesets here, both through local contacts in the trade rather than through retail outlets.

Col


#3

Maybe @ColT can sell you one of his steeds and we can call it a day. :smiley:

Your run ins with Merida and Giant are quite normal. They probably only keep a handful of frames above 56CM or 58CM for domestic sales since the average height is 10cm shorter than you.

I know that @okonomiyaki just bought a large frame Taokas Striker SL from Jester Bikes, but they said that it was the only one left and he got super super lucky. He didn’t even get to see the color and he ordered it.

You may not be able to find a complete bike, but you could look into putting something together. I know that ROXYCLE, the bike that I ride, has large frames available. However, you just have no way of test riding or even seeing them in person. Just have to go by the owner’s FB and the pics he posts. I can vouch that they are pretty damn good bikes and if you want credentials, ROXYCLE sponsors the no.1 Taiwan women, Huang Ting Ying’s track bike. If you’ve seen her legs and her track races, you know the bike needs to be stiff AF for her not to brake in half.

I also know the owner of another small brand in which the frames are all made in Taiwan, but he mostly sells in US. PM me if you want details.

I had a friend who was about your height and ordered an unbranded black carbon frame from a Chinese factory and it cost him around 30,000NTD (including shipping fees) to put together.


#4

As Ranlee said I recently bought a bike–Taokas Striker SL–from Jesler Bikes Taipei branch (near Shuanglian station on the red line). It was last year’s model but they may still have a few, I can LINE them for you if you want.

The bike is 58cm and that’s essentially the biggest you can easily buy in Taiwan, from what I could gather during my shopping. I’m 6’3’’ / 192cm and I have ridden 62cm, 60cm, and 58cm bikes in the past. 58cm so far is my favorite, but it’s really up to your body size & proportions & personal preference. 58cm is “small” for someone my size but I like to ride a smaller frame.

The strange thing about buying in Taiwan (if you’re used to buying in North America) is that you can’t test ride. Like Ranlee said, I bought my bike special order sight unseen. I was a little nervous about that, but it worked out great. The guys at Jesler are very very helpful.

The Taokas Striker SL I bought is carbon frame with Shimano 105, it’s last year’s model so I was able to negotiate the NT$48k list price down substantially. And they fit me and gave me a good deal on a bunch of accessories. Taokas is a local brand and though I’ve only put a few hundred KMs on it, so far the bike is treating me well.

Good luck in your search.


#5

Also, just speaking from my personal experience, some of the Giant stores can be downright rude and unhelpful. I’ve heard there are good ones too, but I haven’t found one yet.


#6

Depends a bit what kind of bike you are looking for, but I had by far the best experience with Primavera bikes ( http://primavera-cycles.com/bikelist.html ).

Run by the Sabinna and Aussie Glenn, they have been one of the most helpful people I have ever met.
Just give them a call, Sabinna normally handles this and speaks English if needed.
They have some dealers in the TP area, but surely will be helpful to sort out ur issues direct.
Glenn is a tall guy himself, so he is aware of the problems, maybe they have something in stock, or can handle it in an other way.

For clarity, I have no commercial relation with them, but they just deserve that little reward for everything they did, nothing better than mouth to mouth recommendation.
Bought 2 Starna’s from them this year, one for my son in Holland, one for me here in TW.


#7

Found Jesler’s web page for Taokas Striker:

http://www.jeslerbike.com/pro_info.php?id=410


#8

I don’t blame them. This is why I don’t give them any of my moneyz.

However, if you’re not someone they know or you don’t look the part, they really don’t need your business. There’s some other shops like this, but we’ll leave that discussion for another time.


#9

Not sure that is true.
I saw quite some bike shops (incl. 2 Giant ones) disappear in the last year.
Thriving with business once, but mostly empty in recent years before closing :frowning: .


#10

Holy cow that’s a pretty well organized website. Something you almost never see from bike shops!

OP, you can give the ROXYCLE owner a PM or add on his FB. His English isn’t fluent, but he does a lot of EU business, so he does understand a good amount.


#11

I wouldn’t get too hung up on the test ride issue. Frankly, I cannot see how a test ride will help with a decision - you simply need the correct size. Ride a Giant, Merida, Fuji, Spesh, Ridley, etc, etc, etc and they will all be much of a muchness, providing you are okay with reach/stack, etc. If you are unsure, it may be worth investing in a professional ‘fit’.

I have bought more than a dozen bikes over the years. Never felt the need to ‘test’.


#12

Fat chance. They are more precious than my children. :wink:


#13

I have thought about building my own, and I read a blog about some guy here in TW who has done that. That seems a bit much for someone who is barely a hobbyist. Something that can handle the body of an ogre and stand up to Taiwanese roads. A nice touring bike maybe. I guess BYO is the only way to go in my situation.

We have a bike trail here, 17km I think. It goes from Nanliao to Zhunan, I think. That would be fun. Unless the walkers and joggers took it over.

Thanks everyone.


#14

Building your own as in, scavenging together the parts and then either having a shop assemble it or assembling it yourself. Not actually creating the frame from raw materials :smiley:

True. It really depends on the shop though. I’ve walked into countless Giant shop that could give a rats ass that you’ve walked in and do not look like they will ever go out of business.


#15

“could give a rats ass”

Is that a 'merican expression?

Something like “could care less”?


#16

Correct!


#17

I guess I could use the 4th floor of the apartment as a smelter. The temp gauge up there said 56C today so it would be easy to heat up!


#18

Hmm. I feared as much.

In which case, may I suggest you take a look at this? :wink:


#19

Not all 'Muricans make this error. It’s a small pet peeve of mine as well.


#20

When I tried to order a large frame though a Giant store, I was told they didn’t exist in Taiwan.

The next store said the same thing.

The next store informed me they only carried a few in stock each year and, sadly, if I wanted it I would need to wait 2-3 days as they needed to special order it from Taiwan.