In metal deformation, size effect is generally attributed to the interactive effect of grain size and specimen dimension. This work shows, however, that relative substructure dimensions should also be considered. Micro-compression tests on the micro-pins having different grain sizes revealed no significant size effect with respect to the mechanical behavior, even if the number of grains over the diameter of the micro-pins falls below its critical value. To justify the reason laying under this fact, a recovery annealing cycle was applied on the micro-pins to change the substructure properties without altering the mean grain size. A surprising drop in the flow stress of the recovery-annealed micro-pins implied the importance of considering subgrain size rather than grain size over the diameter of component for the size effect investigation.