Go Back  Bike Forums > Bike Forums > Bicycle Mechanics
Reload this Page >

Kid's bike - is a chain guard needed?

Notices
Bicycle Mechanics Broken bottom bracket? Tacoed wheel? If you're having problems with your bicycle, or just need help fixing a flat, drop in here for the latest on bicycle mechanics & bicycle maintenance.

Kid's bike - is a chain guard needed?

Old 06-22-19, 03:46 AM
  #1  
Bikeforumuser0019
Time to Fly!
Thread Starter
 
Bikeforumuser0019's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2014
Posts: 336
Mentioned: 2 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 118 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 22 Times in 11 Posts
Kid's bike - is a chain guard needed?

Hello. I'm fixing up a little 14" coaster brake bike for my friend's 5 year old daughter. The plastic chain guard is broken at the mount, and I'd love to just leave it off. Do you think leaving the sprockets/chain exposed would pose a significant risk for a child rider, or is the chain guard there mostly for convention? Before/after pics attached. I think it looks better without the chain guard, but obviously my aesthetic preference should not be put before the safety of the rider. Also, I'm not sure where to find a replacement chain guard for a 14" bike. Interested in your thoughts - thanks very much.

.


Bikeforumuser0019 is offline  
Old 06-22-19, 03:52 AM
  #2  
brianmcg123
Senior Member
 
brianmcg123's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2002
Location: TN
Posts: 1,244
Mentioned: 7 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 338 Post(s)
Liked 19 Times in 14 Posts
When my daughter was 6 I took the chain guard off her bike fixing it up. I left it off, and she got back from a ride with grease all over her jeans. It went back on.
brianmcg123 is offline  
Likes For brianmcg123:
Old 06-22-19, 05:28 AM
  #3  
mixteup 
Senior Member
 
mixteup's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2017
Location: NW Florida
Posts: 368

Bikes: A Few

Mentioned: 9 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 149 Post(s)
Liked 25 Times in 17 Posts
Wax the chain - the treatment will last for a couple hundred miles, a long time for her
__________________
We are confronted by insurmountable opportunities ........
Pogo
mixteup is offline  
Old 06-22-19, 08:27 AM
  #4  
FiftySix
I'm the anecdote.
 
FiftySix's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2019
Location: S.E. Texas
Posts: 1,710

Bikes: '13 Norco CityGlide 8IGH, '12 Schwinn "Speedster" Willy SS

Mentioned: 9 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1007 Post(s)
Liked 969 Times in 681 Posts
Originally Posted by brianmcg123 View Post
When my daughter was 6 I took the chain guard off her bike fixing it up. I left it off, and she got back from a ride with grease all over her jeans. It went back on.
Indeed. If you want to P.O. whomever buys and washes the clothes, leave off the chain guard and lube the chain with traditional petroleum products.
FiftySix is offline  
Old 06-22-19, 08:40 AM
  #5  
KLiNCK
Optically Corrected
 
KLiNCK's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2011
Location: Toronto, Ontario, Canada.
Posts: 552

Bikes: 2012 Specialized Sirrus , 2012 Specialized Roubaix Comp

Mentioned: 3 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 95 Post(s)
Liked 37 Times in 19 Posts
I'd be more concerned about the possibility of little fingers getting pinched (or worse)...
Could the old mounting point could be glued back together?
There are lots of good adhesives that, when used properly, would do the job.
KLiNCK is offline  
Likes For KLiNCK:
Old 06-22-19, 09:44 AM
  #6  
Moe Zhoost
Half way there
 
Moe Zhoost's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2015
Location: Durham, NC
Posts: 2,163

Bikes: Many, and the list changes frequently

Mentioned: 5 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 677 Post(s)
Liked 416 Times in 252 Posts
Have you noticed how many kids have loose shoelaces? At best, they'll be shortened a bit by the chain ring. At worst, the kid may rudely meet the pavement.

You could probably repair the broken guard with a bit of ingenuity.
Moe Zhoost is offline  
Old 06-22-19, 10:50 AM
  #7  
Gresp15C
Senior Member
 
Gresp15C's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2014
Posts: 3,137
Mentioned: 16 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 804 Post(s)
Liked 228 Times in 167 Posts
I'd try to repair the guard if possible.
Gresp15C is offline  
Old 06-22-19, 11:10 AM
  #8  
dsbrantjr
Senior Member
 
dsbrantjr's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2010
Location: Roswell, GA
Posts: 7,555

Bikes: '93 Trek 750, '92 Schwinn Crisscross, '93 Mongoose Alta

Mentioned: 22 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1153 Post(s)
Liked 540 Times in 391 Posts
Definite safety issue. Did you call Tonka Customer Service to see what they could do for you? You might be pleasantly surprised.

Edit: Google "bicycle chain finger amputation."

Last edited by dsbrantjr; 06-22-19 at 11:55 AM.
dsbrantjr is online now  
Old 06-22-19, 11:35 AM
  #9  
CliffordK
Senior Member
 
CliffordK's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2014
Location: Eugene, Oregon, USA
Posts: 24,726
Mentioned: 196 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 11733 Post(s)
Liked 1,042 Times in 810 Posts
For the tens of thousands of miles that bike is likely to be ridden, you could likely also leave off the chain lube, thus also reducing the grime.

Shoelaces as @Moe Zhoost pointed out would be a potential issue, but you can also train a kid to tie one's shoes before hopping on the bike.

The chain tends to protect the sprocket somewhat, so I don't believe a pinch points, torn jeans, etc are a significant issue.

I've left guards off of slightly larger kid's bikes (20" wheels), for slightly older kids.
CliffordK is offline  
Old 06-22-19, 01:41 PM
  #10  
JoeTBM 
Droid on a mission
 
JoeTBM's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2018
Location: Palm Coast, FL
Posts: 445

Bikes: Diamondback Wildwood Classic

Mentioned: 4 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 123 Post(s)
Liked 45 Times in 38 Posts
You might be able to add a small metal strap to repair the guard, I have been successful using a roll of perforated pipe hanger to extend the rear screw mounting in the past.
__________________
JoeTBM (The Bike Man) - I'm a black & white type of guy, the only gray in my life is the hair on my head
www.TheBikeMenOfFlaglerCounty.com




JoeTBM is offline  
Likes For JoeTBM:
Old 06-22-19, 07:50 PM
  #11  
sdmc530
Heft On Wheels
 
sdmc530's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2014
Location: South Dakota
Posts: 2,773

Bikes: Specialized,Cannondale,Argon 18

Mentioned: 12 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 746 Post(s)
Liked 303 Times in 223 Posts
YES, dirty clothing, not to mention pinching of fingers and well everything kids manage to get pinched and adults. the biggest risk is definitely kids riding with untied shoes and that never ends well.

Please put something on there. You many never have an issue but one accident could taint a child's view of biking, and that would be a terrible loss!


Also you did a great job on the bike, looks awesome!!
sdmc530 is offline  
Old 06-22-19, 08:16 PM
  #12  
dsbrantjr
Senior Member
 
dsbrantjr's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2010
Location: Roswell, GA
Posts: 7,555

Bikes: '93 Trek 750, '92 Schwinn Crisscross, '93 Mongoose Alta

Mentioned: 22 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1153 Post(s)
Liked 540 Times in 391 Posts
Originally Posted by JoeTBM View Post
You might be able to add a small metal strap to repair the guard, I have been successful using a roll of perforated pipe hanger to extend the rear screw mounting in the past.
That stuff, AKA plumber's tape or hanger tape, has a million uses. I'll bet that attaching it to the backside of the guard with high-temperature hot-melt glue will make a strong invisible repair.
dsbrantjr is online now  
Old 06-23-19, 08:41 AM
  #13  
FiftySix
I'm the anecdote.
 
FiftySix's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2019
Location: S.E. Texas
Posts: 1,710

Bikes: '13 Norco CityGlide 8IGH, '12 Schwinn "Speedster" Willy SS

Mentioned: 9 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1007 Post(s)
Liked 969 Times in 681 Posts
Originally Posted by CliffordK View Post
For the tens of thousands of miles that bike is likely to be ridden, you could likely also leave off the chain lube, thus also reducing the grime.

Shoelaces as @Moe Zhoost pointed out would be a potential issue, but you can also train a kid to tie one's shoes before hopping on the bike.

The chain tends to protect the sprocket somewhat, so I don't believe a pinch points, torn jeans, etc are a significant issue.

I've left guards off of slightly larger kid's bikes (20" wheels), for slightly older kids.
In double knots. Some laces are just prone to coming undone unless tied in a double knot. I have a pair of work boots like that.
FiftySix is offline  
Old 06-23-19, 11:54 AM
  #14  
wipekitty
vespertine member
 
wipekitty's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2013
Location: nowhere, USA
Posts: 2,474

Bikes: Yes

Mentioned: 22 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 685 Post(s)
Liked 204 Times in 157 Posts
Love the fix-up. That bike has gone from Disney Princess to girly but tough. Make one in my size, I'd ride it!

I'd recommend putting the chain guard back on. Some little girls like to cruise the block (and around here, MTB trails) in dresses, which can easily get caught in the chain. If you can take that chain guard and paint it black, I think it will fit with the aesthetic of the bike. Maybe add a purple butterfly!
wipekitty is offline  
Old 06-23-19, 02:04 PM
  #15  
Bikeforumuser0019
Time to Fly!
Thread Starter
 
Bikeforumuser0019's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2014
Posts: 336
Mentioned: 2 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 118 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 22 Times in 11 Posts
Hey everyone, thank you all so much for your good advice, suggestions, insights and encouragements. I will confess, that part of my goal in fixing up this little bike is to get the kids and the mom excited about riding. And I think it's working, so I definitely don't want to do anything that would give daughter or mom a sour experience.

I love the idea of waxing the chain, because that's a bit of know-how I'd like to add to my metaphorical bike toolbox anyway. And, I think I'm going to go to the hardware store and see about getting some materials to fabricate a new chain guard. I did once make a pair of fenders out of corrugated plastic that were effective (even if a little tacky). Making a box for the drive train of this little bike can't be that complicated. I'll let you know what I come up with.

(by the way, I often tell my friends that my last words and/or the epitaph on my gravestone will probably be: "It can't be that complicated.")
Bikeforumuser0019 is offline  
Likes For Bikeforumuser0019:
Old 06-24-19, 02:29 AM
  #16  
JoeTBM 
Droid on a mission
 
JoeTBM's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2018
Location: Palm Coast, FL
Posts: 445

Bikes: Diamondback Wildwood Classic

Mentioned: 4 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 123 Post(s)
Liked 45 Times in 38 Posts
I have also been successful at re-fabricating a chain guard for a kids bike by taking and cutting a chain guard from an adult bike

or check out ebay, here is one

https://www.ebay.com/itm/BLACK-PLAST...610b092316ec0d

or this one

https://www.ebay.com/itm/Black-ABS-P...cAAOSwbpVbhi-C

There are many others depending on chain rings and length
__________________
JoeTBM (The Bike Man) - I'm a black & white type of guy, the only gray in my life is the hair on my head
www.TheBikeMenOfFlaglerCounty.com




JoeTBM is offline  
Old 06-25-19, 11:22 PM
  #17  
Bikeforumuser0019
Time to Fly!
Thread Starter
 
Bikeforumuser0019's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2014
Posts: 336
Mentioned: 2 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 118 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 22 Times in 11 Posts
Chain guard fabrication

Update on this bike. Thanks again all for your guidance in the matter of the chain guard. I used the broken chain guard as a model and whipped this up from coroplast, plastic string, and a couple of zip ties. I don't know how much abuse this will stand up against, but at least I can give it back to her now and she can start riding... hate to let another mild summer day go by separating her from her new big-girl pedal bike. And, I've bought myself a little more time to decide on another chain guard option, fix the old one or find a new one.





Last edited by Bikeforumuser0019; 06-25-19 at 11:39 PM.
Bikeforumuser0019 is offline  
Likes For Bikeforumuser0019:
Related Topics
Thread
Thread Starter
Forum
Replies
Last Post
nivv
Singlespeed & Fixed Gear
10
07-19-14 12:56 PM
tomculb
Bicycle Mechanics
6
07-16-12 09:38 AM
sibeliusnick
Bicycle Mechanics
56
04-01-12 09:35 AM
notoriouslyKEN
Hybrid Bicycles
9
11-10-10 07:05 AM

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off


Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Contact Us - Archive - Advertising - Cookie Policy - Privacy Statement - Terms of Service - Do Not Sell My Personal Information -

Copyright © 2018 MH Sub I, LLC dba Internet Brands. All rights reserved. Use of this site indicates your consent to the Terms of Use.