A small but growing number of companies are realizing there’s a hole in the cycling market for light yet capable children’s mountain bikes that allow pint-sized riders to keep up with their parents.
Trailcraft Cycles is the latest company to develop a high-end kid’s bike, focusing geometry, a lightweight frame and trail-worthy components. The Fort Collins, Colorado, based start-up is currently holding a Kickstarter campaign to fund the first production run of its first model, the Pineridge 24.
The inspiration for this project came as the result of a parent’s dissatisfaction with existing 24in kids’ mountain bikes.
“The Trailcraft Pineridge 24 was conceived after looking for a quality, lightweight bike for our eight-year-old son. We purchased a ‘high-end’ name brand lightweight 24in-wheeled bike. It weighed more than 27lb in stock form, and had chainstays as long as my 26in-wheeled bike. It was as long in the wheelbase as many 26in-wheeled bikes.
“Our son, just barely eight-years-old at the time, and only about 50lb himself, was riding a bike that was literally more than half his body weight. Most of this weight was in the wheels, tires, stem, seatpost and handlebars. If you weigh 180lb can you imagine riding a 90lb bicycle?” wrote company founder Ginger Rosenbauer on Trailcraft’s Kickstarter page.
The Pineridge 24 was developed with input from a number of young riders, including Rosenbaur’s own son. It features 390mm chainstays and a 70-degree head tube angle to make it more nimble than many offerings currently on the market. Unlike many of Trailcraft’s competitors, the frame is tested to EN adult mountain bike safety standards.
Trailcraft will offer the Pineridge 24 as a frame kit and a complete bike in aluminum and titanium versions.
The pineridge 24 was designed with input from young trail rippers:Courtesy
A frame kit, featuring the aluminum frame, a 24in NoTubes Crest wheelset, 60mm-travel RST First suspension fork, Schwalbe Rocket Ron tires, a crankset with a 104mm BCD and 152mm crankarms, and bottom bracket will retail for US$1,199. The titanium frame kit will cost US$2,199 and come with a matching rigid Ti fork.
The complete bike featuring the aforementioned frame and components along with a 2×10 Shimano Deore drivetrain and brakes will retail for US$1,699. The complete titanium Pineridge 24 will set buyers back US$2,699.
The claimed weight for the complete Pineridge 24 is 22lb/9.9kg for the aluminum bike and 19lb/8.6kg for the rigid titanium version.
Limited quantities of the bikes and frame kits will be available by this year’s holiday season. The company expects to have the first full production run of bikes and kits ready to ship by May 2015.