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Old 10-14-11, 07:01 PM   #1
eyemkeith
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9-year-old Boy needs 20'' bike -- Suggestions?

My son's birthday is coming up and he needs a new bike. I'm looking around at 20-inch bikes and I'm seeing a whole lot of bmx, or bmx-inspired designs.

He's not going to want gears, so a single speed will do. And he sits, unlike the bmx-ers I've known. I'm trying to wrap this up, with a new helmet, for less than $300. Anyone have suggestions?

Thanks in advance,

Keith.
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Old 10-17-11, 10:11 AM   #2
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Are you sure you want a 20"? It seems like it might get too small really soon for a 9 year old.

We've really liked the Specialized Hotrocks, and they have a 20" coaster bike:
http://www.specialized.com/us/en/bc/...04&scname=Kids
MSRP is $240, so you should able to get it plus accessories for $300 without much difficulty.

But you might be better off wrapping a promise (or just a helmet), and taking him bike shopping with you, so he can pick out his own. I think you'll have a lot of selection at that price point.
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Old 10-18-11, 01:38 AM   #3
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try to find a Specialized Hemi Junior Cruiser



the difficult part is they only made them 2004 and 2005. I just found this one brand new at a local shop and picked it up for my son for his birthday in January. It's killing me hiding it in the basement all this nice weather we've been having.

It's very lightweight, 24" wheels, with skinny but knobby tires. I know my suggestion isn't the greatest since it's not easy to find...
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Old 10-24-11, 05:22 AM   #4
eyemkeith
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Everyone says that a 20" may be too small. We're not tall people. And he's kinda small for his age. I tried putting him on a 24'' in my LBS and it looked like it ate him.

I hadn't seen that Specialized before. I kinda like that. Thanks!

Quote:
Originally Posted by ebartom View Post
Are you sure you want a 20"? It seems like it might get too small really soon for a 9 year old.

We've really liked the Specialized Hotrocks, and they have a 20" coaster bike:
http://www.specialized.com/us/en/bc/...04&scname=Kids
MSRP is $240, so you should able to get it plus accessories for $300 without much difficulty.

But you might be better off wrapping a promise (or just a helmet), and taking him bike shopping with you, so he can pick out his own. I think you'll have a lot of selection at that price point.
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Old 10-30-11, 06:02 AM   #5
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Although it has gears, 26' wheels and a bit above your price range, take a look at Giant Boulder in xxs or xs frame. I bought it for my son's 9th b-day and he rode it until this summer he hit 5'9" aged 13 years and 6 months. These frames have tremendously long - and rigid - seatposts in 31.6 mm size.

Good luck

SF
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Old 10-31-11, 08:37 AM   #6
tcs
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Quote:
Originally Posted by eyemkeith View Post
Anyone have suggestions?
Electra
(out of your price range but) Fuji
Schwinn
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Old 10-31-11, 04:20 PM   #7
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I agree, a 20" bike is great for BMX, or jumping in a dirt lot, but it's too small for any kind of distance riding.

A 24" mountain bike, or small framed 650c road bike would be ideal. That specialized 24" cruiser, above, looks great if you can find one.

Don't be afraid of used. A high quality used bike is going to serve you much better than a new Wall-Mart bike. Especially with kids bikes, you can find a nice bike that's hardly been ridden, or simply out-gown. A good wash, fresh grips, tires and some odds-n-ends can make a used bike look and feel new.

For example, I found this Marin 24" bike on Craigslist for $50 (Retail new for $300 or more). I invested $100 in parts + an afternoon wrenching. Now my 9-year old has a solid, light, quality bike that I won't stress over if he adds a few scratches.



Last edited by Chad1376; 10-31-11 at 04:57 PM.
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Old 10-31-11, 08:18 PM   #8
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I bought my son a used Specialized Hot Rock like the one above on craigslist. He is 6 and about 49-50 inches.

I agree that a 20 inch may be small - he might outgrow it in a year. If you decide that you want to look at a 24", check out the Raleigh Mountain Scout

http://www.rei.com/product/808759/ra...:referralID=NA
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Old 11-07-11, 10:14 AM   #9
eyemkeith
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Thanks all! I found a bike I like. I really appreciate all the advice and knowledge that can be found here, once again.
I wrote about the experience here, if anyone is at all interested: The Unnamed Bicycle Column: Shreddin' The Gnar - The Black Art of bicycle fit, big box stores and bike shop loyalty: http://patch.com/A-n40l
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