Recommendation for a kid's bike

Discussion in 'Road Cycling' started by Philip, Mar 24, 2003.

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  1. Philip

    Philip Guest

    I am looking to buy a new bike for my 8 year old daughter. It will be use almost exclusively for use
    on roads and sidewalks (I know that not always legal but sometimes necessary). What brands should I
    consider? I know everyone recommends going to the local bike shop but it can get expensive if you
    only get 1 1/2 years (actually 5 months of good weather use)of use out of a bike before they out
    grow it like the last two I purchased. The bikes in the local bike shop start at $250 (even for a
    single speed). What features should I be looking for? Thanks for the advice.
     
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  2. Archer

    Archer Guest

    In article <[email protected]>, [email protected] says...
    > I am looking to buy a new bike for my 8 year old daughter. It will be use almost exclusively for
    > use on roads and sidewalks (I know that not always legal but sometimes necessary). What brands
    > should I consider? I know everyone recommends going to the local bike shop but it can get
    > expensive if you only get 1 1/2 years (actually 5 months of good weather use)of use out of a bike
    > before they out grow it like the last two I purchased. The bikes in the local bike shop start at
    > $250 (even for a single speed). What features should I be looking for? Thanks for the advice.

    Many people here will disagree, but I think your local Walmart, Benny's or other mass-market store
    is fine for this level of bike, as long as you do some reading ahead of time to be sure you get the
    correct size. The sales people there will most likely not know a thing about sizing correctly. The
    general idea would be to get the biggest size she can ride comfortably, and then adjust the seat and
    handlebars as she grows. It will also help if you are somewhat mechanically minded and can make any
    necessary adjustments to brakes and gears.

    --
    David Kerber An optimist says "Good morning, Lord." While a pessimist says "Good Lord,
    it's morning".

    Remove the ns_ from the address before e-mailing.
     
  3. Nyrides

    Nyrides Guest

    You can't go too far wrong if you decide to take David's advice. However, to be more specific about
    "the largest bike she can comfortably ride," be sure both her feet (at least the toes) can touch the
    ground when she's in the saddle at its lowest position. Putting a kid on a bike that's too big can
    turn her off to bicycling very quickly.

    --
    Low-Impact Rides in the NY/LI region www.geocities.com/NYRides "archer"
    <[email protected]_hotmail.com> wrote in message news:[email protected]...
    > In article <[email protected]>, [email protected] says...
    > > I am looking to buy a new bike for my 8 year old daughter. It will be use almost exclusively for
    > > use on roads and sidewalks (I know that not always legal but sometimes necessary). What brands
    > > should I consider? I know everyone recommends going to the local bike shop but it can get
    > > expensive if you only get 1 1/2 years (actually 5 months of good weather use)of use out of a
    > > bike before they out grow it like the last two I purchased. The bikes in the local bike shop
    > > start at $250 (even for a single speed). What features should I be looking for? Thanks for the
    > > advice.
    >
    > Many people here will disagree, but I think your local Walmart, Benny's or other mass-market store
    > is fine for this level of bike, as long as you do some reading ahead of time to be sure you get
    > the correct size. The sales people there will most likely not know a thing about sizing correctly.
    > The general idea would be to get the biggest size she can ride comfortably, and then adjust the
    > seat and handlebars as she grows. It will also help if you are somewhat mechanically minded and
    > can make any necessary adjustments to brakes and gears.
    >
    >
    > --
    > David Kerber An optimist says "Good morning, Lord." While a pessimist says "Good Lord, it's
    > morning".
    >
    > Remove the ns_ from the address before e-mailing.
     
  4. Archer

    Archer Guest

    In article <%[email protected]>, [email protected] says...
    > You can't go too far wrong if you decide to take David's advice. However, to be more specific
    > about "the largest bike she can comfortably ride," be sure both her feet (at least the toes) can
    > touch the ground when she's in the saddle at its lowest position. Putting a kid on a bike that's
    > too big can turn her off to bicycling very quickly.

    Good point. In addition, A kid who can't put her feet down when on the seat is likely to fall a lot
    when first getting used to it.

    DON'T FORGET THE HELMET!

    > --
    > Low-Impact Rides in the NY/LI region www.geocities.com/NYRides "archer"
    > <[email protected]_hotmail.com> wrote in message news:[email protected]...
    > > In article <[email protected]>, [email protected] says...
    > > > I am looking to buy a new bike for my 8 year old daughter. It will be use almost exclusively
    > > > for use on roads and sidewalks (I know that not always legal but sometimes necessary). What
    > > > brands should I consider? I know everyone recommends going to the local bike shop but it can
    > > > get expensive if you only get 1 1/2 years (actually 5 months of good weather use)of use out of
    > > > a bike before they out grow it like the last two I purchased. The bikes in the local bike shop
    > > > start at $250 (even for a single speed). What features should I be looking for? Thanks for the
    > > > advice.
    > >
    > > Many people here will disagree, but I think your local Walmart, Benny's or other mass-market
    > > store is fine for this level of bike, as long as you do some reading ahead of time to be sure
    > > you get the correct size. The sales people there will most likely not know a thing about sizing
    > > correctly. The general idea would be to get the biggest size she can ride comfortably, and then
    > > adjust the seat and handlebars as she grows. It will also help if you are somewhat mechanically
    > > minded and can make any necessary adjustments to brakes and gears.

    --
    David Kerber An optimist says "Good morning, Lord." While a pessimist says "Good Lord,
    it's morning".

    Remove the ns_ from the address before e-mailing.
     
  5. archer wrote:
    > In article <%[email protected]>, [email protected] says...
    >> You can't go too far wrong if you decide to take David's advice. However, to be more specific
    >> about "the largest bike she can comfortably ride," be sure both her feet (at least the toes) can
    >> touch the ground when she's in the saddle at its lowest position. Putting a kid on a bike that's
    >> too big can turn her off to bicycling very quickly.
    >
    > Good point. In addition, A kid who can't put her feet down when on the seat is likely to fall a
    > lot when first getting used to it.
    >
    > DON'T FORGET THE HELMET!
    >

    Also remember that small kids are not coordinated enough to use a handbrake. See to it she gets a
    footbrake on her first bike. I just taught my own six year old to ride a bike this last week. Not
    until I put the saddle low enough so she could touch both feet on the ground did she learn. After
    that it was just up and away. She still hasn't learned to use the brakes properly yet. We are
    working on that by going on slight downhill where she doesn't have to pedal, just adjust her speed
    with the footbrake. In a little while we will put it all together. In the meantime she just puts
    both feet on the ground and use them as brakes ;)

    What really is great is the way she loves to fight going uphill. She'll fight until she's zigzaging
    uphill with a big grin on her face and panting really hard. And then she says "again"

    --
    Perre

    Remove the DOTs to reply
     
  6. Karen M.

    Karen M. Guest

    Philip wrote:
    > I am looking to buy a new bike for my 8 year old daughter. It will be use almost exclusively for
    > use on roads and sidewalks (I know that not always legal but sometimes necessary). What brands
    > should I consider? I know everyone recommends going to the local bike shop but it can get
    > expensive if you only get 1 1/2 years (actually 5 months of good weather use)of use out of a bike
    > before they out grow it like the last two I purchased. The bikes in the local bike shop start at
    > $250 (even for a single speed). What features should I be looking for? Thanks for the advice.

    Figure out what size she needs by taking her to a bike shop and having her stand over the boys'
    bikes (which are generally a sturdier design and possibly better resale value). Then hit garage
    sales, thrifts, police auctions, and bike shop bulletin boards. (Recognize that you should take
    it back to the shop for a tune-up and any needed repairs.) If you live in a neighborhood or close
    to a grade school, see about organizing or hosting a bike swap day where the big kids pass along
    their outgrown rides. (A bike that's been used one year and outgrown should sell for perhaps half
    of what you paid new, depending on where you advertise it.) Get something with aluminium rims,
    probably a mountain bike style. Eight-YO's can deal with handbrakes after practice. Derailleurs
    have a steeper learning curve, but my younger niece was 7 when she was presented with a 5-speed
    Trail-a-Bike and learned when/how to shift. I found the deal of the century at a thrift chain
    formerly known as Value Village, now called Value World. (It's the retail outlet for Purple
    Heart.) A girls' 15-speed Raleigh mixte with 24" wheels, sized to fit the bigger niece *and* her
    favorite color. In excellent shape. I paid a whopping $2.91 for it. --Karen M.
     
  7. Fritz M

    Fritz M Guest

    "Per Elmsäter" <[email protected]> wrote:

    > Also remember that small kids are not coordinated enough to use a handbrake. See to it she gets a
    > footbrake on her first bike.

    I think most eight-year-olds are capable of using handbreaks.

    My son's first bike was a $30 dollar Wal-Mart special (I think it was actually purchased at a garage
    sale). Second was also a discount cheapo. He's seven now and this year after Christmas I looked at
    the discount stores, but the little Diamondback at the Local Bike Shop was only about $50 more and
    had quality cold-forged components rather than stamped junk. The bar end indexed shifters work
    really nice and my son's been joining me on some shorter rides.

    I'm shopping for a bike for my three-year-old daughter now. I looked at a little toddler bike at the
    LBS, but paying $120 for a Trek with 12 inch wheels at this level seems a bit excessive, so it's off
    to Wal-Mart I go :)

    RFM
     
  8. Philip

    Philip Guest

    Thanks

    [email protected] (Karen M.) wrote in message
    news:<[email protected]>...
    > Philip wrote:
    > > I am looking to buy a new bike for my 8 year old daughter. It will be use almost exclusively for
    > > use on roads and sidewalks (I know that not always legal but sometimes necessary). What brands
    > > should I consider? I know everyone recommends going to the local bike shop but it can get
    > > expensive if you only get 1 1/2 years (actually 5 months of good weather use)of use out of a
    > > bike before they out grow it like the last two I purchased. The bikes in the local bike shop
    > > start at $250 (even for a single speed). What features should I be looking for? Thanks for the
    > > advice.
    >
    > Figure out what size she needs by taking her to a bike shop and having her stand over the boys'
    > bikes (which are generally a sturdier design and possibly better resale value). Then hit garage
    > sales, thrifts, police auctions, and bike shop bulletin boards. (Recognize that you should take
    > it back to the shop for a tune-up and any needed repairs.) If you live in a neighborhood or
    > close to a grade school, see about organizing or hosting a bike swap day where the big kids
    > pass along their outgrown rides. (A bike that's been used one year and outgrown should sell for
    > perhaps half of what you paid new, depending on where you advertise it.) Get something with
    > aluminium rims, probably a mountain bike style. Eight-YO's can deal with handbrakes after
    > practice. Derailleurs have a steeper learning curve, but my younger niece was 7 when she was
    > presented with a 5-speed Trail-a-Bike and learned when/how to shift. I found the deal of the
    > century at a thrift chain formerly known as Value Village, now called Value World. (It's the
    > retail outlet for Purple Heart.) A girls' 15-speed Raleigh mixte with 24" wheels, sized to fit
    > the bigger niece *and* her favorite color. In excellent shape. I paid a whopping $2.91 for it.
    > --Karen M.
     
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