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Old 08-08-13, 06:29 PM   #1
fidelio67
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Suggestions for a teener/tweener

Hi all,
Well, finally, I got my son interested. I taught him to ride years ago but he outgrew the kids bike without really using it. Can't blame him, really. It's all quite urban round here and the roads can be busy to hostile. But I got myself a cheap hybrid as a pub/nip-out-to-the-shops bike, and he said 'Hey Dad, maybe I could have a go on that' It's a tad on the small side for me at 6' and definitely on the large side for him at 5' 5", but he can straddle it safely and I lowered the saddle, got him some confidence back by noodling about on grass slopes, and a while ago I took him on the old railway cycle path and we covered about 10 miles. And he loved it, which is great and we've been out a few times.
But that bike is way too big, too heavy. I could do with some other advice, and I bet some of you kind people could offer.
I suppose he needs an adult bike with a smallish frame. I mean, he's the same height as Quintana! And money is tight in the Fidelio household. Mrs F will need some persuasion to go up to even 200. My own pride and joy is only a Triban 3 with Mavic Aksiums. He wants a road bike with drop handlebars, and I think that's sensible. So to the questions:
Can I get him anything ridable for 200? I even thought about a halfords apollo fusion, which I'm sure is not a great bike but I just thought that some of the issues about its resilience would be less significant given that it will only be carrying about 100 pounds of rider. Stick my 13 stone on that and ride it for a few hundred km and it would probably fall apart. I just sort of thought that a light rider might get away with it.
Secondly, blimey, how to you teach kids to ride if you live in a city? He's nearly 13 but his handling is like that of a 7-year old. Bristol is blessed with a lot of cycle paths, but there is always the odd stretch of horrible urban carmageddon between A and B.
This post is so much longer than I intended. Apologies!
F
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Old 08-09-13, 08:08 AM   #2
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You could get a nice used road bike for less than 200 quid. Check the local adverts and "vintage bicycles" on ebay. The local bike shop could measure him for correct frame size. Guessing 46 to 48 cm. There should be a Bikeability series of classes where you live.

Here' a couple of links to get you started:

http://www.bsca.org.uk/wordpress/

http://www.dft.gov.uk/bikeability/
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Old 08-09-13, 06:51 PM   #3
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Thanks delcrossv. Do you think a 'vintage' job would be better than a halfords cheapy? They all look like steel frames, which I guess is fine, but it's the lack of indexing and having shifters on the downtube that puts me off. Mind you I rode a 5 speed steelie with downtube friction shifters throughout my teens. I just sort of thought that with all the techno advances even a cheap halfords/viking whatever might be better than an old skool steelie. There are a hell of a lot more recent hybrids about in my price range. Maybe I could just stick some slicks and bar ends on a hybrid. Thanks for the links,
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Old 08-19-13, 02:34 PM   #4
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My kids are both riding Fuji Aces 20" and 24". At 24" they start to have drop bars and are a good cheap road solution for kids. Maybe http://www.bikepedia.com/quickbike/B...l=Ace+650+Comp
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Old 08-19-13, 02:57 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by fidelio67 View Post
Thanks delcrossv. Do you think a 'vintage' job would be better than a halfords cheapy? They all look like steel frames, which I guess is fine, but it's the lack of indexing and having shifters on the downtube that puts me off. Mind you I rode a 5 speed steelie with downtube friction shifters throughout my teens. I just sort of thought that with all the techno advances even a cheap halfords/viking whatever might be better than an old skool steelie. There are a hell of a lot more recent hybrids about in my price range. Maybe I could just stick some slicks and bar ends on a hybrid. Thanks for the links,
Well you'd get a lot lighter frame and better bearings and the like with an older higher end bike. My kids are riding with downtube friction shifters and haven't complained. Just takes getting used to. Some have shifters on the stem which is nice. You can (almost) always retrofit indexing/brifters but it's money.

I've heard pretty good things about Fuji's- seen some but none of my kids have tested any.
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Old 08-19-13, 07:18 PM   #6
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Thanks again. I found a SH Giant OCR well under budget which seems pretty good. I road it around a bit and liked it, although it was too small for me of course. Sure it's better that that halfords job I was looking at.
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Old 08-19-13, 09:22 PM   #7
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Thanks again. I found a SH Giant OCR well under budget which seems pretty good. I road it around a bit and liked it, although it was too small for me of course. Sure it's better that that halfords job I was looking at.
That'll get him around just fine!
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