Sizing Kids Bikes

Want to get your kids on two wheels? Got any general 'family biking' questions? Chat here
Lynnie
Posts: 2
Joined: Fri Aug 03, 2007 18:12 pm

Sizing Kids Bikes

Postby Lynnie » Fri Aug 03, 2007 18:35 pm

Hello
Need some direction on sizing a bike for my 9 year old daughter. She's on the smaller side and a not ready for the biggest bike so I'm planning to look at online ads for a second hand bike. So I don't want to go into a bike store and have them spend a lot of time since we're not going to buy there. BUT I'm confused about sizing.

So can someone tell me if I look at an ad or call about a bike whether I pay attention to the wheel size or the frame size? Do I measure her inseam to know the wheel or the frame size. What about the length of the bar?

She loves to ride and has great long cycling stamina and will ride 10 miles several times a week if she can....which means if I can. So although I want second hand i want a good quality bike that will take significant usage for probably 14-18 months. Are there particular brands that get the equivalent of "Consumer Reports good used car stamp of approval"??

Thanks for any help
Lynnie in San Francisco

andrewc3142
Posts: 891
Joined: Tue Mar 13, 2007 21:20 pm

Postby andrewc3142 » Fri Aug 03, 2007 19:45 pm

Scott make great kids bikes. Not especially cheap, but cheaper than a Gameboy or similar which a lot of parents for some reason seem to buy their kids without looking at the cost (or the effect).

Well enough made that they can be passed on without the younger one feeling hard done by.

Having said that, I've promised my 7 year old a road bike for when he takes first Communion (at almost 8 and a half). From what I can find, it'll probably be the Felt 24.

Perhaps try JD Cycles. They sell online as well and are very helpful.

Lynnie
Posts: 2
Joined: Fri Aug 03, 2007 18:12 pm

Postby Lynnie » Sat Aug 04, 2007 19:14 pm

Thank you andrewc3142. just the kind of info i was looking for.

andrewc3142
Posts: 891
Joined: Tue Mar 13, 2007 21:20 pm

Postby andrewc3142 » Sat Aug 04, 2007 20:41 pm

You're welcome. A good dealer will give you lots of help over the phone and may even have some used bikes for sale. And a reputable dealer will be happy to exchange if it goes wrong on sizing. Generally with kids bikes, the suggested age range is there or thereabouts, but do be careful of buying one too big "to grow in to" - a bike that is too big is dangerous. A 4-5 year old will fit on a 16, a 6-8 year old on a 20, etc. but obviously kids are different sizes.

As to measurements, the standover height is probably the most important, ie inside leg with shoes on that they will ride in. To measure this, stand them against a wall (with shoes on) and place a slim hardback book between their legs, as high as it will go without doing harm to their life chances. If you give this to a bike shop they should be able to size.

If you want to buy online, a sneak trip to a largish bike shop should give an idea fairly quickly whether your 9 year old is big enough for a 24 inch (the probable size for her). The size won't vary too much between makes. And then the decision is what type of bike - IMO full suspension is only good at the top end of the market, a hardtail MTB will suit forest trails, canal paths and crashing up kerbs, a more road orientated model will be better for doing longer trips on road, etc, etc.

Cheers

Andy


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