CityCyclingEdinburgh Forum » Questions/Support/Help

Bike for 3ish year old

(27 posts)
  • Started 3 years ago by LivM
  • Latest reply from chdot
  • This topic is not resolved

  1. LivM
    Member

    Young man is having lots of fun on his balance bike (Decathlon, with a single brake) and we're starting to plan the next size up. I think he's a little short for a pedal bike yet (short legs gene). We're not averse to spending on a good bike but I don't want to buy a small pedal bike only to have to spend another £250 in a year.

    Any recommendations? I like the look of the Hoy Bonaly but that's just emotional not having actually seen it in real life.

    Maybe the best thing is to wait until he grows. He's also a hit and miss about listening to me (stopping when I yell...), so I should maybe wait until he listens before buying a bike that increases his speed away from me (I can't run fast at all).

    Posted 3 years ago #
  2. urchaidh
    Member

    We thought the same as you about buying a smaller bike only to have to replace it, so our older two stuck it out on (Rothan) balance bikes 'til they were four, then got 16" bikes which lasted them a couple of years.

    We have a cousin's old Cnoc 14" (predates the large/small variants I think) in the basement awaiting the youngest. You're welcome to come borrow it for a trial, see how he gets on. There's a park and Portobello Prom nearby for a test run.

    Posted 3 years ago #
  3. Baldcyclist
    Member

    We recently bought our (just turned) 3 year old an Apollo Firecheif bike from Halfrauds two weeks ago(I didn't take their offer of build).

    To be honest it was his decision, and an impulse purchase. We were in Halfrauds looking at bikes, he loves fire engines, and we couldn't get him off it, so that was decision made.

    I had always imagined that we'd have spent more on a 'better' bike, but to be honest he's only used his balance bike for 5 months, and we'll be lucky if he gets to next summer on this one, so why spend the cash?

    He loves it because it is fire engine themed, and fire engines are the bestest thing in the whole wide world.

    Take him to a few shops, and see what he likes, he'll tell you when he's found his favorite, buy that...

    Posted 3 years ago #
  4. steveo
    Member

    Haha, thats exactly what happend with one of my girls. I was trying to steer her towards the sensible decathlon one with easy pull brakes etc. She seen the one in Halfrauds with the baby seat for her dolly and that was that.

    Posted 3 years ago #
  5. Arellcat
    Moderator

    I bought a Rothan for my nephew, and by his 3rd birthday he'd nearly outgrown it. Are longer seatposts available? Can anyone measure the diameter for me?

    He's ridden it a bit, but he told me he kept falling off, so we had a little chat about trying over and over. But there aren't any pavements where he lives, so there aren't the opportunities to really let rip. Some of his friends at nursery already have strong balance bike fu, and it would be a shame to see him miss out.

    Posted 3 years ago #
  6. chdot
    Admin

    Obviously depends on individual child’s size and to some extent experience/ability.

    My recent experience is balance bike 2-3, 14” 3-4, 16” 4+

    I like Islabikes for various reasons, including the fact that buying secondhand and selling after about a year means (if looked after) you can get about as much as you paid for it.

    Frog probably similar.

    Posted 3 years ago #
  7. SRD
    Moderator

    I'm a big Islabike fan, but for their first bikes, my two both rode very bog-standard second-hand bikes for a few months, before moving to an islabike being 20 with gears.

    Posted 3 years ago #
  8. acsimpson
    Member

    We ended up buying a used frog 43 safe in the knowledge that we have a younger child who will be able to ride it should the eldest grow out of it earlier than expected. It took him almost 6 months to get used to the idea of using pedals but now loves it. He's now almost 5 and big for his age, although he would probably be able to ride a larger wheeled bike he still fits the 14" wheels.

    Posted 3 years ago #
  9. Baldcyclist
    Member

    The one thing I often wonder about Islabikes/Frog, is that they say they are designed specifically for children, but yet they still paint them for adults?

    Great bikes, but uninspiring for kids...

    Posted 3 years ago #
  10. acsimpson
    Member

    Our one is white with colourful spots so definitely kids paint.

    Posted 3 years ago #
  11. LivM
    Member

    I've just managed to make him stand still long enough to take his inside leg measurement. Only about 35cm (certainly no more than 40) meaning that things like the Frog43 are still quite a way off, size wise. Cnoc 14 large might be worth a look.

    Posted 3 years ago #
  12. Moose
    Member

    The Isla bikes we have had have all just been sold on and we broke even on them after years of happy use. Isla bikes seemed to create the market with making kids bikes lighter and things like the cranks and brake lever reach shorter. So the brand seems to suffer no depreciation if you buy used / keep in good nick /sell on.

    Having said that, my then 2 year old jumped on a bike in Decathlon that was 1/4 of the retail price of an Isla, and had some features that were better than the equivalent Isla bike... similar weight, a brake lever that improved on the isla levers' design, a fully enclosed chain and some sort of hub brake that didn't require much pressure at all to operate. We ended up buying it after he completed the 6th lap of the shop https://www.decathlon.co.uk/100-kids-bike-3-5-years-id_8378533.html

    Posted 3 years ago #
  13. ARobComp
    Member

    Just checking in if anyone has any islabike Cnoc 14 large that they're looking to divest themselves of. Kids bikes second hand like hens teeth. Alternately Cnoc 16

    Question is - 3 year old is 101cm, and has inside leg that would fit a 16 but not the total height. Wondering whether I'd be better off getting the Cnoc 16 instead as she'd be balance biking it for a few months while she grows anyway.

    Posted 7 months ago #
  14. chdot
    Admin

    “second hand like hens teeth”

    Not entirely, but seldom cheap.

    My advice would be look at ebay every day.

    Message people selling as ‘pickup only’ and ask if they would be willing to put in a box if you arranged a courier’

    DON’T buy one that’s cheap because it’s old - esp an early that has only one brake or a backpedal one.

    “Alternately Cnoc 16”

    You know that’s not ideal for a new rider.

    Posted 7 months ago #
  15. chdot
    Admin

    However (speaking as someone who has bought at least 9 Islabikes for close relatives), I can recommend these (none are local at the moment).

    https://www.ebay.co.uk/sch/i.html?_nkw=ridgeback+mx14

    Bought one for a visitor last year and taught him to ride in a few hours - over several days.

    Posted 7 months ago #
  16. chdot
    Admin

  17. ARobComp
    Member

    You know that’s not ideal for a new rider.

    I wasn't sure which was why I was asking but appreciate confirmation that I should go for the Cnoc 14 large.

    Back to the search! I've put an alert on Ebay (have weird trust issues with Ebay but worth keeping an eye on) and FB seems to have a reasonable supply of bikes that pop up occasionally.

    As you say - issue isn't availability but locality.

    Posted 7 months ago #
  18. chdot
    Admin

    Related factors are how much you are willing to pay and how soon ‘must’ you buy one?

    My experience is that ebay prices can go in cycles - ie from times when there are not many bikes and more potential buyers, then a smaller number of people chasing at a period when there are more bikes, fewer buyers and lower final prices.

    Obviously it’s never a neat sine wave!

    At present there seems to be much higher ‘pick up only’ than ‘normal’.

    Also make sure you read the description. Quite a lot of people list as ‘pick up only’ and then write ‘prefer pick up, but you can arrange carrier’.

    As I said above, worth asking if people are willing to do that.

    Of course whatever Islabike you buy, it will be much appreciated by new owner and the chances are you’ll be able to sell it for a similar price in a year or 2.

    Posted 7 months ago #
  19. acsimpson
    Member

    Have you considered a Frog bike? We have a frog 43 which was recently grown out of if you are interested.

    Posted 7 months ago #
  20. ARobComp
    Member

    Frog 43 could be good @acsimpson. I'll drop you a DM!

    Posted 7 months ago #
  21. Goliath
    Member

    +1 for used Ridgeback for little kids bikes.
    They are light and robust, but don’t seem to command the high prices that 2nd hand Islabikes or Frog bikes do.
    Having said that, my kids (10&12) now both have Frog bikes, having dabbled with heavy Specialized mountain bikes. I don’t think Edinburgh Bicycle sell Specialized Hot Rocks any more-most kids don’t need heavy suspension forks etc.
    You get what you pay for, but when they’re wee and aren’t going to go far and are going to grow out of the bike so quickly, we didn’t think it was worth paying top dollar.

    Posted 7 months ago #
  22. chdot
    Admin

    “+1 for used Ridgeback for little kids bikes“

    I’ve always liked Ridgeback as a brand. One person did all the design and speccing for years, then they went on to Genesis (CdeF etc).

    Only had a kids one since last year when I wanted a cheap ‘visitor bike’.

    Impressed.

    Posted 7 months ago #
  23. acsimpson
    Member

    We had a ridgeback scoot bike. It was great but the lowest saddle height was too high. Our kids were ready for it long before they could fit it.

    It was from around 2007 so perhaps it's been fixed in more modern versions.

    Posted 7 months ago #
  24. Moose
    Member

    @Arob Above mentioned decathlon bike has been replaced by a larger one. You are welcome to have it for the interim period before a cnoc 16 is a good fit.

    Posted 7 months ago #
  25. LivM
    Member

    We ended up buying a Hoy Bonaly 16 for his 4th birthday. It was too big. A short while later we got him a Ridgeback MX14 which he rode for about 18 months (6 months in balance bike mode before he agreed to try pedals - nailed it in about 2 mins). He's been on the 16" for about a year now and I think he's probably big enough for a 20" with gears, but he's a bit nervous at the moment after a fall off this one a couple of months ago.

    Posted 7 months ago #
  26. chdot
    Admin

    “Hoy Bonaly 16 for his 4th birthday. It was too big”

    Obviously children grow at different rates,

    But my experience of similar age ones suggests that the 16” Islabikes (even the “large” one) is smaller. Easy to check or course, but highlights the importance of ‘fit’ especially for young/new (including adult) cyclists.

    Balance bikes (and ‘first bike’ without pedals) are wonderful. Stabilisers are a bad idea. There may be some young children who benefit for a short time, but for most it means a delay to learning the crucial skill of balance.

    It’s likely that the transition from competent pedalling with stabilisers to balancing without both will drag out the whole ‘learning to ride’ process - with frustration for all.

    “6 months in balance bike mode before he agreed to try pedals”

    There’s a bold admission. Every child is different and it’s part of a parent’s job to understand/navigate this.

    I’m sure many parents aren’t so patient and would ‘encourage’ a faster transition to pedals.

    Posted 7 months ago #
  27. chdot
    Admin

    MOST relevant tweet (with video)

    https://twitter.com/DannyCarden/status/1362474649003692038

    Posted 7 months ago #

RSS feed for this topic

Reply

You must log in to post.


Video embedded using Easy Video Embed plugin