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Old 05-24-08, 05:18 PM   #1
starla
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Any recommendations for a good kid's bike?

Since I've been riding, my 12 year old nephew has become interested in bikes. He doesn't know how to ride a bike, and I am dying to rectify that fact. I am even willing to purchase a bike for him so he can learn. I don't have a lot of money to spend, and of course, he'll eventually outgrow the bike, so I'd hate to invest a lot, but I'd like him to have a nice starter bike.

I am thinking of a good used bike on CL. He's about 4'11" with a 25-26" inseam. Is he tall enough for a small adult's bike, or should I look at kid's bikes? I don't have kids of my own, otherwise, I might know more!
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Old 05-24-08, 05:22 PM   #2
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Specialized Hard Rock. Great bike. Has the front forks...good components and has the cool factor look. Price is about $200 so I don't know what your budget is. Bought one for my son at that age and we now ride every Saturday together.

See the link below.

http://www.specialized.com/bc/SBCBkModel.jsp?spid=32275
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Old 05-24-08, 09:02 PM   #3
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since he doesnt know how to ride a bike... i would stay away from gears ....
I would look at a BMX bike from felt or specialized.
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Old 05-24-08, 09:31 PM   #4
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You might try the same question in the Recreational & Family forum.

He's going to be a tough fit, is my guess. My inseam is 26", and the smallest adult frame more or less works, but I'm 5'6. He might be needing something with a very short top tube.

Kids bikes are almost criminal, by the way. My neighbor's boy has a kid's Specialized Hard Rock, and the damn thing feels like it weighs as much as my Giant Cypress. I know, you can't build a $750.00 bike and sell it for $200.00, but still. . . .
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Old 05-24-08, 09:32 PM   #5
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At his age--even though he's learning to ride--it's not necessary to stay away from gears unless that's what he wants to do! The advice to stay away from multi-gear drivetrain bikes is really a concession to younger children who are barely able to figure out how to stay upright and apply the brakes OK, never mind the skills that would be needed to use a geared drivetrain effectively.

A low-end mountain bike may well be the best compromise between form and function at this point. However, instead of buying new, buying a well-cared-for secondhand bike may be the ticket as long as it fits him. After all, crashes are inevitable while he learns and who cares about scratches and dings on a secondhand bike as long as the bike's structure is still sound after the fall?

If these falls were to happen while he was on a new one? Well...this is the likely reaction... That would NOT be pretty, or help his riding skills develop.
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Old 05-24-08, 09:41 PM   #6
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Depends on the kind of riding you are wanting to introduce him to. My daughter's first decent bike was a Specialized Sirrus in a small frame size, but then I got a deal on a Fuji Finest in a 44 CM size. She was probably a hair under 5' tall when we bought it, and it was a tad big. She's 13 and about 5'-4" or so now and it fits her very well. If she doesn't get much taller is should serve her for a couple more years.

She did her first metric on the Sirrus, but for a general use bike for a kid, the Hard Rock is a good suggestion.
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Old 05-24-08, 09:46 PM   #7
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This kid, apparently, is just learning to ride, so a bike that can "take it" and is fairly stable and easy to handle would be a good idea. The higher performance machine can come later once he has experience and a better idea of what form(s) of riding he wants to do.
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Old 05-26-08, 07:23 AM   #8
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Size SMALL specialized Hard Rock - excellent choice for a kid that size. Start him off in a mid-range gear - he'll figure the gearing out shortly after he figures out the steering, brakes & balance... don't forget a helmet!
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Old 05-26-08, 08:18 AM   #9
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When I was searching for a bike for my son I noticed that small bicycles for kids are really easy to find on craigslist.
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