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  1. #1
    Senior Member mumei's Avatar
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    Training Wheels Universal?

    Hi,

    I'm thinking about getting a children's bicycle from craigslist, but it doesn't come with training wheels. Does anyone know if training wheels for children's bicycles are basically universal? I'm looking at a 12" bike.

    Thanks in advance.

  2. #2
    Senior Member coldfeet's Avatar
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    Sort of, most of the ones I've seen bolt on extensions of the axle past the the main nut, and can be bent to provide that inch or 2 of road clearance if the slotting on the mount doesn't give enough.

  3. #3
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    The aftermarket replacement training wheels from Wally/Target/KMart/wherever are 'universal', fitting everything (supposedly) from 12" to 20" wheeled bikes. It's still a crapshoot, as some don't mount well to stubbier axles.

    Depending on the age of the bike, you well be able to get OEM from the factory by calling their 800 number. Prices are usually pretty cheap.

  4. #4
    Senior Member mumei's Avatar
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    Thank you for the information. I knew bikeforums wouldn't let me down.

  5. #5
    Life is good RonH's Avatar
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    Any bike shop will have or can get the correct training wheels for you.
    My bikes: 2001 Litespeed Tuscany---2015 Cannondale Supersix EVO carbon 105

    Life is like a 10-speed bicycle. Most of us have gears we never use. ~ Charles Schultz

  6. #6
    Senior Member Retro Grouch's Avatar
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    Two things:

    1. Training wheels are sized to the bicycle they go onto. I'm thinking that training wheels that are designed to fit a 16" or 20" bike aren't going to fit onto a 12" bike very well.

    2. What's the point? My experience has been that training wheels just prolong the amount of time it takes a kid to learn to ride. Forget training wheels. Take off the pedals and lower the seat so that the kid can put both feet flat on the ground. Let him scoot along like that until he can lift his feet and coast confidently for 20' or so. Put the pedals back on, gradually inch up the seat, and he'll be good-to-go.

  7. #7
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    You can get a 16" bike w/training wheels from wally world for $40..........

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    Quote Originally Posted by Retro Grouch View Post
    Two things:

    1. Training wheels are sized to the bicycle they go onto. I'm thinking that training wheels that are designed to fit a 16" or 20" bike aren't going to fit onto a 12" bike very well.

    2. What's the point? My experience has been that training wheels just prolong the amount of time it takes a kid to learn to ride. Forget training wheels. Take off the pedals and lower the seat so that the kid can put both feet flat on the ground. Let him scoot along like that until he can lift his feet and coast confidently for 20' or so. Put the pedals back on, gradually inch up the seat, and he'll be good-to-go.
    +1 - we teach one or more kids to ride most weeks using this method. If you start off as suggested, your youngster won't have to "unlearn" riding with stabilisers.

  9. #9
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    Agreed. Training wheels do not TEACH a kid to ride a bike, they ALLOW a kid to ride a bike.

  10. #10
    Bike ≠ Car ≠ Ped. BarracksSi's Avatar
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    Add another vote for skipping the training wheels.

    I had them on my first bike. Someone had recommended that they should be set a little high so that they didn't always roll on the ground, with the idea that I'd eventually learn how to balance and they would just be outriggers to keep me from falling over.

    I learned how to pedal the bike and make it go forward while leaning onto the right side training wheel. I wouldn't call that "riding", though. I didn't actually learn how to ride until my dad took the training wheels off and ran along behind me, holding the back of the banana seat. I think he's the most patient dad in the world.

    My brother-in-law taught my niece how to ride by taking the pedals off her bike and letting her roll around that way. She grew into her first three-speed last summer.

    mumei, learn from my mistake. You don't need to spend money on training wheels, just a pedal wrench.

  11. #11
    Senior Member mumei's Avatar
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    I had heard of the training-wheel-less method before but never seriously considered it. I will do so now. On a side note, what age do you think is appropriate for a child to learn to ride. The bike is for my niece who will soon be 3. She walks and runs with no problem. Maybe she is too young. I just want her to experience the love of cycling as soon as possible I guess.

  12. #12
    Bike ≠ Car ≠ Ped. BarracksSi's Avatar
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    I figure, if kids can skate or play piano that young, they can roll around on a bike.

    I think my niece was about 5 when she started. I didn't get my bike until I turned 7.

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    Quote Originally Posted by atbman View Post
    +1 - we teach one or more kids to ride most weeks using this method. If you start off as suggested, your youngster won't have to "unlearn" riding with stabilisers.
    I'm not making fun of you, man, as I see you're not from the 'colonies'; it's just that I've never heard training wheels referred to as 'stabilisers'.

    Huffy, of course, calls them 'outriggers'.....

    Do with that what you will.

  14. #14
    foolishly delirious RatedZeroHero's Avatar
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    my son was 3 when I taught him to ride w/training wheels in the fall didn't know about the other way...

    he was riding a 20" w/o training wheels early the next spring...

    now he rides a 15" Specialized Hardrock... he is 7

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