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20" Kids Bikes

June 27, 2007, 3:50 p.m.
Posts: 143
Joined: March 23, 2005

It is time for my almost 6 year old to move from a 16" kids bike to a 20". Any suggestions? He rides with me on the lower trails @ Burnaby Mountain. He is quite a good rider for his age and continues to progress. I don't want to buy him a piece of crap Canadian Tire bike that weighs a tonne and self destructs if you take it off road. Since he will probably be on this size of bike for a few years I don't mind spending a bit on it. I need some advice from the biking Dads and Moms out there.

Shifting or single speed?
Hard tail or full suspension?
Are lighter frames available?
Can you get decent brakes on kids bikes?
Any specific brand or model recommendations?

Thanks.

June 27, 2007, 3:56 p.m.
Posts: 7967
Joined: March 8, 2006

The specialized hotrocks I know have proven decent little trail bikes.
and there under 300 for 6 speed, chainguide, good vbraked hardtail.
well under.

June 27, 2007, 3:59 p.m.
Posts: 143
Joined: March 23, 2005

I would probably like to keep it under $500. Thanks for the recommendation on the Specialized. I'll check that one out.

June 27, 2007, 4:42 p.m.
Posts: 7543
Joined: June 17, 2003

Kona and Norco also have a bunch of options. All things considered, I would go for the lightest one you can get among the models that are available to you-or figure out a way to lighten the bike.

Kid's bikes are ridiculously heavy.

"The song of a bird…We used to ask Ennesson to do bird calls. He could do them. How he could do them, and when he perished, along with him went all those birds…"-Return from the Stars, Stanislaw Lem

"We just walk around, and sometimes we go out and dance, and then we listen to the environment."-Ralf Hutter, Kraftwerk

June 27, 2007, 5:45 p.m.
Posts: 1130
Joined: June 29, 2005

Presonally, I'd put my kid on a BMX bike. In fact, I just did. You can get something really good for almost nothing used. Forces them to learn how to pick a line and really ride. Get a decent one and there is very little likelihood that they will break it, too.

June 27, 2007, 6 p.m.
Posts: 1213
Joined: Nov. 19, 2002

Although I don't have kids myself (yet), we recently put together a pretty rad kid's 20" mountain bike based off this bike:
http://www.specialized.com/bc/SBCBkModel.jsp?spid=22126
We upgraded the brakes, shifter, and rear derailleur, threw a meatier tire on the front, and put on grippier pedals. It was pretty sweet.

intelligent designer jeans
cornichons > dills

June 27, 2007, 9 p.m.
Posts: 0
Joined: July 23, 2006

I just shopped around quite a bit for my 6 year old. Best gear bike I could find was the Specialized Hotrock. The shifters are actually designed for kids hands and the front fork actually works. Wheels are aluminum instead of steel. V brakes work well.
I would recommend against full suspension as the weight is ridiculous and the hard tail teaches them to ride.
Cost you $370 though.
This is a good bike for trails. Kids need the gears to climb. If he is just going to ride skateboard parks then I would look at the Redlines. Can find them at Obsession Bikes.

June 27, 2007, 9:31 p.m.
Posts: 1406
Joined: Nov. 21, 2002

Norco Ninja, it's their new light alloy kids bikes, a little over 400 I think.

I troll shitty posters like yourself, because it's amusing to watch you skidmarks get all riled up.

June 27, 2007, 10:51 p.m.
Posts: 33566
Joined: Nov. 19, 2002

If you son is tall enough, consider a 24" bike. You can get a decent bike, like a Norco Jammer or Kona Hula. The forks aren't great, but the rest of the bike works pretty good (i.e. the brake levers don't require Schwarzenegger grip to pull), and the pricing is decent at around $400 or so. Frame size is around a 13", which, when the seat is slammed down is pretty small.

It is easy to dodge our responsibilities, but we cannot dodge the consequences of dodging our responsibilities.
- Josiah Stamp

Every time I see an adult on a bicycle, I no longer despair for the future of the human race.
- H.G. Wells

June 27, 2007, 11:15 p.m.
Posts: 1718
Joined: March 11, 2003

Giant STP 125 20", about $300…

Des

During the Middle Ages, probably one of the biggest mistakes was not putting on your armor because you were 'just going down to the corner'.
- Deep Thoughts by Jack Handey

June 27, 2007, 11:23 p.m.
Posts: 33566
Joined: Nov. 19, 2002

Nice bike, but a chain device? :lol:

It is easy to dodge our responsibilities, but we cannot dodge the consequences of dodging our responsibilities.
- Josiah Stamp

Every time I see an adult on a bicycle, I no longer despair for the future of the human race.
- H.G. Wells

June 27, 2007, 11:34 p.m.
Posts: 1718
Joined: March 11, 2003

Nice bike, but a chain device? :lol:

Hey, I don't design them, but it kinda goes with the waterbottle :lol: You know these kids today… they are so gnarcore ;)

Des

During the Middle Ages, probably one of the biggest mistakes was not putting on your armor because you were 'just going down to the corner'.
- Deep Thoughts by Jack Handey

June 28, 2007, 11:45 a.m.
Posts: 143
Joined: March 23, 2005

Thanks everyone for the responses. I'll look at the Hotrock @ Obsession. Does anyone know who stocks the Giant? Also, what is your opinion on buying used. For a BMX style bike I wouldn't mind buying used but I am leery of buying a used bike with gears and a d[HTML_REMOVED]#233;railleur. Am I right to think that the chances are good that a used bike is going to shift like s**t?

June 28, 2007, 12:03 p.m.
Posts: 0
Joined: Sept. 21, 2006

Thanks everyone for the responses. I'll look at the Hotrock @ Obsession. Does anyone know who stocks the Giant? Also, what is your opinion on buying used. For a BMX style bike I wouldn't mind buying used but I am leery of buying a used bike with gears and a d

June 28, 2007, 1:28 p.m.
Posts: 33566
Joined: Nov. 19, 2002

BSP stocks Giants.

The rear derailleur is usually fine, but the front derailleur can be hard to shift because it requires more leverage. You should check that out, whether it's a grip or thumb shifter. For the rear derailleur, usually a cleaning, cable change, and adjustment will produce good shifting.

What's the worst problem is the brakes. They will be v-brakes, but the levers are usually far from the bar and very hard to pull. For my daughter's 20" bike (some $120 London Drugs special), the brakes were actually pretty good and they had a fair bit of adjustability. With some tweeks, I was able to get the brakes to be as easy to pull as a good set of adult sized v-brakes.

So make sure you check the brakes and shifters. After that, check for fit. If the brakes don't work, even the most perfect size is useless.

It is easy to dodge our responsibilities, but we cannot dodge the consequences of dodging our responsibilities.
- Josiah Stamp

Every time I see an adult on a bicycle, I no longer despair for the future of the human race.
- H.G. Wells

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