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Old 06-08-09, 06:11 PM   #1
jenly
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What bikes do your kids ride?

After a bit of a no-bike hiatus we would like to get our older children (ages 9 and 7) new bicycles. We live in a city with access to paved bike trails (and curbs and potholes). The 9 year old would fit a 24 " bike and the 7 yr old is just a hair too short for a 24 and we'd probably get her a 20 inch and give it to her little sister next year.

All the kids bikes at the local shops look like mountain bikes and I just don't see how my 9 year old is going to do 20 to 30 mile rides with those fat knobby tires. The guys at the bike shop tell me it should be no problem but I don't believe them.

My 9 yr old will definitely go off curbs and such so a true road bike is probably not for him.

What would you do?

Thanks!
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Old 06-08-09, 07:52 PM   #2
HardyWeinberg
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get kids mtn-like bikes but swap out tires for slicks
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Old 06-09-09, 09:57 AM   #3
maddyfish
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My 6 year old has a specialized hot rock 20"
My 8 year old has a trek mt 220
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Old 06-09-09, 11:09 AM   #4
GamecockTaco
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agree with the above - get them the mtb's and switch the tires out for something a little more "road friendly".

My kids rides are: 9 year old on a 17" framed 26" wheels older Specialized Hardrock
8 year old on a 24" wheels Giant
6 year old on a 20" wheels Giant
4 year old on the Trail-a-Bike
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Old 06-09-09, 11:33 AM   #5
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My 10 year old son has 2 bikes:

54 cm Motobecane Messenger SS road bike. It was mine, a surprise Christmas gift, but a bit small for me, but he rides it for training, as he hates running.

One of those Huffy/West Coast Choppers "Jesse James" chopper bike his maternal grandfather gave him. I've installed a longer post and a normal bike seat to accommodate his height. He uses this bike for "play".

Previous bikes included a Trek 3500 and Specialized Hardrock, both had road tires installed for road riding.



we also have a tandem to share:


My daughter riding her Schwinn Stingray (ECC version):


I've bought a new helmet for my daughter since those pictures were taken.
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Old 06-10-09, 08:26 AM   #6
jenly
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Thank you all for the helpful replies. The Bontrager customer service person thought it would be very helpful for him to swap out the tires as well, even though the SX is supposed to be an all-around tire.

DieselDan, your kids are adorable!
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Old 06-18-09, 09:23 AM   #7
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When my oldest daughter was 10 we bought her a Raleigh Mojave 2.0 and at the same time we bought my son a small Daimondback. My youngest daughter is 5 now and she still rides on the Trail a Bike. After 2 years each kid has a couple thousand miles on their bikes and they are still problem free. They both are going to need new bikes soon, but I don't regret the 700 bucks I spent on the 3 of them.
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Old 06-18-09, 09:23 PM   #8
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I would up going with Specialized hotrocks--a 24" 7-speed for my 9 yr old and a 20" for the 7 yr old even though she will be too big for it by the end of the summer. We also got a set of thinner tires for the 9 yr old for longer rides.

I have to say I was stunned at the prices of kids' bikes. I thought at first it was because I live in NYC and everything here is a rip-off, but no, I see they are expensive everywhere. In the end, we didn't decide on a brand as much as a local bike shop/dealer. Once I decided on the dealer, the brand selection became more narrow.

I still can't believe how expensive kids' bikes are.

Last edited by jenly; 06-18-09 at 09:24 PM. Reason: typo
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Old 06-26-09, 12:04 PM   #9
aharong
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Same problem. My son is 6 yoa and he mostly only rides with us, either in paved trails or on the side of the road. We recently did a 23 mile loop on father's day. He handled it like a champ but he was slow and it was tough going for part of the way.

He rides a Trek MT60 with 20" wheels. The knobbies on it are rediculous and even in 6th gear he can't pedal faster than 10-12 mph or his feet fly off the pedals.

I'm sure he'd have more fun with street tires and more realistic gearing. But I haven't seen anything in his size and I'm not anxious to spend $$$ on custom mods.

But we have fun anyway!!

Update: I bought cheapo 20x1.5 slicks ($25/pair) and put them on his bike. He loves the idea that now he has "road" tires on his "mountain" bike. I told him he now has a touring bike, and that went over well. We have yet to log a long ride, but I'm sure it will be easier. Just the lack of vibration should be a welcome improvement!

Last edited by aharong; 07-08-09 at 08:39 AM. Reason: update
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