WHAT SIZE BMX FRAME SHOULD I RUN?
Author: Cooper Date Posted:6 August 2020
Choosing the right size BMX frame is always an important question to ask. yourself when buying a new frame or even complete bike.
We've compiled as much info as possible to help you make the right decision. Usually the first reference you look at when buying a new BMX frame is the top tube length. They can range from 19.0 all the way up to 21.8. There's even some frames smaller and large than this but in general it's within those sizes.
CHOOSING THE RIGHT TOP TUBE SIZE
One of the main factors would be based on your height. For example Pat Freyne runs a 21.25" Cult Foley frame and he is 6ft 5" (198cm). Where as Paterico Fallico runs a 20.6" Colony M8 frame and he is 5ft 5" (168cm). Another thing to think about it what type of riding you like to do, generally bowl/trail riders will run a longer frame for stability where as street / ramp riders tend to prefer a shorter top tube as it can be easier to maneuver.
REAR END FRAME LENGTHS
When it comes to rear end lengths on BMX frames there's not right or wrong length, like top tube lengths this comes down more to what style of riding you like to do. For example Chris James runs a Colony Blaster frame which has a rear end length of 13.75" slammed. Slammed means it's the shortest length the rear end can be run at, so a 13.75" slammed could also be run 14.15" if the back wheel is setup at the tail end of the dropouts. Chris runs his signature frame these lengths because he rides large bowls and trails so a longer back end gives you more leverage against transition when you pump , this makes it easier to pump and as you ride bigger transitions your will get the most out of them , it’s also gives you stability with speed and gives you a Lower chance of looping out ect .
Then you have the other end of the spectrum which are shorter back ends like the Division Balata frame which is 13.2" slammed. The shorter backends tend to be favoured but street riders because of the shorter backend making it easier to manouver the bike around out of grinds etc..
HEAD TUBE ANGLES EXPLAINED
If you've picked out the top tube length and rear end then it's more than likely that the frame with those specs has the head tube angle to suit but it's good to understand the differences anyway. At first glance it may not look like much of a difference when looking at the numbers but trust me it can!
It ties into the rear end lengths.... Like how the longer back end gives you a more stable and flowy ride, a mellower head tube angle such as the Colony Blaster frame which is 74.5 degree's will match that feel. Where as the Cult DAK frame which has a rear end length of 13.2" then has a head tube angle of 75.5 degree's which gives you a quicker more responsive steering which helps with hop 360's, backwards grinds and tricks out of grinds hence why it's a common head angle on street style frames.
STAND OVER HEIGHTS EXPLAINED
I know when I was learning about BMX frames and complete bikes I never really thought about stand over heights but it definitely makes a difference in terms of feel. Traditionally frames suited for riding street and trails will have a standover over around 9" which gives you a stable and more standard feel. Where as frames like the Colony M8 which have a standover of 7.9" are best suited for riders that rider parks the most, technical ramp riding etc.. This is the choice of Paterico Fallico who likes it because it tends to make whips easier. I personally find the lower frames harder to bunnyhop but that wouldn't affect you if you mainly ride transition.
BOTTOM BRACKET HEIGHTS
For me personally the reason I looked at the bottom bracket height of a frame was to make sure I had good clearance for crooked grinds. These days most frames are around 11.5" (measured from the ground up) which is fine for grinds and is a pretty universal size. If you have a higher bottom bracket height like the Cult CREW frame which is 11.7" then you have even more clearance for grinding
WHAT'S A GOOD ALL ROUND STYLE BMX FRAME?
Maybe you haven't really decided what styles of riding you enjoy yet or you just love riding it all? Then finding a frame that suits everything is a good thing to know. The Colony Sweet Tooth frame is a good example of this type of BMX frame. Alex Hiam's signature gives you a lot of top tube length options along with a rear end of 13.25" slammed so it's mid range in that department then you cop a head tube angle of 75.2 degree's again balancing out the frame nicely.
Hopefully all this info helps you guys work out what frame best suits your riding. We've got a bunch of frames available which you can check out here.