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Thread: Childs seat

  1. #1
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    Childs seat

    I've been poking around this site since early spring, but this is my first post.

    I originally came here looking for child carrier options for my daughter now 2 yrs. old (but I ended up spending most of my time in the Commuter forum). Anyway, in an effort to contribute to the site, I thought I'd post what I settled on.

    My wife and I ended up purchasing a Co-Rider seat. It's an english saddle type affair that mounts to the top tube of the bicycle and allows the child to ride in front of you with an un-obstructed view (that's what we liked most about it). It also has little "mini" handlebars that mount to the handlebars on the bicycle for the child to hold on to. In addition, there are some rather stout foot guards that appear, so far, to do a good job in keeping the childs feet out of the front tire/fork area.

    The main reason we went this way was that we both thought this seat would aid in keeping my daughter involved in the rides we went on. She can see everything, feels the wind on her face (bugs too), is easy to talk to while we're riding, and she gets to "steer" too. In short, we didn't want her to get bored staring at daddy's back.

    So far, she loves the seat and looks forward to our rides. From my wife's and my standpoint, my daughter isn't in the way. Your natural riding position for us keeps you from bumping heads with her and your controls are easily reached (mountain bike and a comfort bike).

    The only bummer so far is that like most seats that I know of, you only get one mounting bracket. There's a rather large height difference between my wife and I, so using the same bicycle isn't really an option. Right now I have to move everything between bikes if we go on seperate rides. I e-mailed the distributor in the US and they are bending over backwards to set me up with an additional mounting bracket and another set of mini handlebars.

    My wife, daughter and I all really like the seat/carrier and are happy with the purchase. We get alot of interest from others while we are on the trails too.

    Anyway, just wanted to throw a little input out there in case someone else is looking for a child carrier like I was earlier this spring. It's another option available to you and it's a little un-conventional from what I would normally think about looking for in a child carrier.

    I'm not sure if the forum rules prohibit website links for sales or not, but I think this is obscure enough that it would be helpful for other members to post it here. I am not involved with the company other than being a satisfied customer because of one purchase.

    The website for the US distributor is: www.co-ride.com

  2. #2
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    I've got three kids, with our youngest having moved from bike seat to trail a bike just last year. So I spent about four years with each, or 12 riding years total with them on bike seats. Statistics show that trailers are safest, but there are not as far as I know any statistics or studies on front vs rear mounted bike seats. That being said, after over a decade of kids on my bike, including rentals with front mounted, I much prefer rear mounted and my strictly anecdotal feeling as well as comparative unscientific observations on handling, steering and breaking, is that rear was way better for both me and the kid.

    Kids don't get bored on rear seats. because of helmets and the way they are going to rest their head they are facing their head to one side or another anyway and have plenty to see. kids are already use to riding in car seats that strap them down and often give them way less to see.

    Parents also have to consider what type of riding they do. front or rear mounted seats are in fact probably the most dangerous thing you can do. Probably way more dangerous then letting your kid ride in a car without seat belts or than letting them ride a bike themselves without a helmet. I would say 90% of our riding was on pleasure rides on full size roads through a large local park which were closed to cars on weekends where there were no instances of narrow passing, need for short stops, etc.

    In any case, based on experience with handling, I would pick front mounted last

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    I have both a rear and front mounted seat on my bike. I don't find one or the other to be safer or more stable. It is all in what you get used to. The best bike seat is the one that is comfy for both parents and kid!

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    My experience with the rear seats is that they make the bike really unstable when the kid is in there and the parent isn't on the saddle. Loading an unloading the kid, or doing anything that requires getting off the saddle is difficult. We eventually got a trike and avoided the whole problem.

    I have to agree with AK Eggy about the child's involvement. I think kids like having the forward view and like being in front of their parents, participating.

  5. #5
    Fredly
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    I've been considering options for a bike seat recently and decided to stay away from front mounted. My thinking is that the most common type of crashes are from hooks (right or left) and in a crash involving a vehicle at the front it could cause significantly more injury with first the car strike and then the force of my moving forward from the inertia. Being crushed between a car and my uberclydeness seems like a bad combination...

  6. #6
    Aer
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    Quote Originally Posted by iconicflux View Post
    I've been considering options for a bike seat recently and decided to stay away from front mounted. My thinking is that the most common type of crashes are from hooks (right or left) and in a crash involving a vehicle at the front it could cause significantly more injury with first the car strike and then the force of my moving forward from the inertia. Being crushed between a car and my uberclydeness seems like a bad combination...
    Yeah, like I said I have years of riding with three different kids on bike seats. At least a thousand hours. I have yet to have one kid complain of boredom from being in the back. It is easy for them to look to the side, in fact their head will almost always be to the side because of helmet geometry. Even non tapered round child helmets
    As far as eye contact from a front mounted seat that is per se dangerous, there is no biking activity that require more unrelenting concentration on the road or path than riding with a child. with a rear seat there is no distraction.

    to argue that front seat offers more interaction or less boredom seems no different than arguing front seat is better for kids in cars.

    Ask yourself why newspaper delivery kids (as I was) empty the front baskets first. weight in front compromises breaking and steering. Perhaps in my case a child hood of carrying 100lbs of newspapers back and front and messenger bag all at once on a 1970's era Schwinns taught me to be more aware of balance and loads than some riders.

    Everyone is different. in the past 20 years the only bike accidents I had that would have affected a child would have all harmed a kid on front seat and not in the rear. There is just very little you are going to do about someone who decides to come onto your side of a trail while they are passing on a curve other than swerve into brush. when I have done that my kid would have been hit by the other bike and or the branches of treas in front and not harmed if behind me.

    when it comes to loading the kid onto the bike, really both front and back present problems if you are alone. I would say any smart parent would do it with another adult when able and when unable, next best is loading from a bike rack or leaning against a wall or iron fence the length of the bike making sure the front wheel didn't pivot

  7. #7
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    i call baloney.

    i rode with my 2-year old daughter with a front-mounted child seat in Shanghai China last year and we both agree that 1) it is way more fun than a rear-mounted seat or trailer (although our trailer wins for being most comfortable); 2) it is no less dangerous than trying to talk under your armpit or turning around to address a rear-mounted child; 3) control is improved because (in our case) the OGK seat was connected directly to the handlebars, and thus to my arms.

    talking and pointing to objects mid-ride is very simple when your little person is right in front of you. contrary to some assumptions, danger didn't seem noticeable increased; in fact, because we could both see traffic unfolding before us, we both were quiet when we got into trickier traffic---when i needed to make urgent instructions (e.g., "big bump ahead!") i could keep my focus on the road the whole time, while knowing that my daughter could hear me loud and clear.

    rear-mounted seats aren't inherently bad, but front-mounted seats have some real-world safety advantages. and, they *are* more fun.

    one note: make sure the little person in that front-mounted seat has adequate eye protection along with the standard helmet.
    No slogans, just 14 facts.

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    If child safety in significant collisions is a big concern, get a trailer or a trike.

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