Islabikes Pro Series

Islabikes Launches ‘Pro Series’ Range

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For a long while, Islabikes was the only name in town if you wanted to buy a good quality lightweight bike for your children. In recent years, there have been plenty of new companies vying for that market and there is now a pretty good choice of well-specced bikes for any terrain your children are likely to tackle.

With an eye to that competition, as well as reflecting the company’s love of competition, Islabikes is coming out with a rather special new range…

Islabikes Pro Series

Islabikes Pro Series

Not quite entering the lofty realms of the bespoke carbon full-susser, but getting pretty close to the ‘pony’ bracket in price, the Pro Series bikes are aimed at the young racer and cycling enthusiast. Company founder Isla Rowntree says:

“We have designed full carbon forks that perfectly match the geometry of each bicycle size, low Q factor cranks, our own superlight and grippy cyclocross tyres and sprinkled each bike with titanium and aluminium finishing bits to shave off the last bit of weight. These are serious bikes for children who are serious about their cycling. I hope we see some of their names crop up as Olympians in the future.”

They’ve certainly had loads of thought put into them, so what’s in the range?

Creig Pro Series

Price: £1499.99

Islabikes Pro Series
Creig 24 Pro Series

Available in both 24in and 26in wheel sizes, the Creig Pro Series is a lightweight alloy XC mountain bike with a Rockshox 30 Gold TK fork. Islabikes says these forks have been specifically selected due to their narrow 30mm stanchions which reduces overall friction meaning they can be run at much lower pressures, which light riders (like children) need.

The Creig Pro Series comes with Stan’s NoTube Rims in both wheel sizes meaning these bikes can be run tubeless with their Schwalbe Rocket Ron tyres.

Islabikes Pro Series
Creig 26 Pro Series

Geometry on the Creig Pro Series is cross country orientated. Islabikes have designed their own low Q-Factor cranks, which has allowed Islabikes to lower the bottom bracket and still maintain a safe lean angle. This in turn helps reduce overall standover height, so children can get their feet down when they want to stop.

Beinn 20 Pro Series

Price: £999.99

Islabikes Pro Series
Beinn 20 Pro Series

The Beinn Pro Series is a proper mountain bike for smaller riders featuring a custom carbon fibre fork which Islabikes has designed from the ground up. Low spoke counts and aluminum nipples have been used in the wheels to help keep rotating weight to a minimum.

Islabikes notes that one of the biggest difficulties in designing the Pro Series Beinn 20 was finding a cassette with a wide enough ratio for the bike’s intended use. Currently the only available wide ratio cassettes are 10speed, which is a little too wide, due to the short chainstay. A wider cassette results in an increased chain angle causing chain drops and premature chain wear. Rather than increase the chainstay, which would affect the ride characteristics, Islabikes has specced a 10 speed SRAM cassette and converted it to 9 speed by removing the 15 and 17 tooth sprockets and replacing with a 16 tooth. Cunning.

The Beinn 20 Pro Series also comes with Avid DB5 hydraulic disc brakes, Islabikes own tyres, and Stan’s tubeless ready rims.

Cnoc Pro Series

Price: £799.99

Islabikes Pro Series
Cnoc 16 Pro Series

Apparently almost every element of this bike has been custom designed and manufactured by Islabikes, including the full carbon fork. With full carbon fork legs, crown and steerer, it gives huge weight savings and promises excellent steering agility. It says here.

Further weight savings come from Islabikes’ custom tyres which feature a very supple 185TPI construction. A custom tread pattern has been optimised to provide fast, but grippy, performance for lighter riders. The Cnoc Pro Series also has a hollow titanium bottom bracket with carbon shell. As with all bikes in the Pro Series range, the Cnoc makes use of Islabikes’ full carbon 25.4mm seatpost. Islabikes’ own pedals also feature titanium axles and pins keeping the weight to a minimum.

All these weight-saving, pocket-lightening materials bring the Cnoc 20 Pro Series in at 4.8kg (inc pedals), saving 1.3kg over the current Cnoc.

Islabikes Pro Series

There’s also a Luath Pro at £1599.99, but as it’s a #DirtyDropBarGoodness flavour bike, head over to Grit.Cx if you want to read more about that, or click here for full detailed spec sheets..

Clearly this range is targeted at the young and keen racer rather than your average canal path pootler, and parents buying these are going to be looking for performance rather than ‘something to grow into’. If it’s a financial return on your investment in your young prodigy, you might want to consider golf, or tennis, as even a successful pro cyclist is unlikely to be paying off your mortgage for you. Of course, you might just really love your child, or possibly want to feel a little bit less guilty about what you spend on your own bike. And to be fair, the resale value of kids bikes seems to be higher than bikes for grown-ups. But whatever your thinking, if you want one, the Islabikes Pro Series is available to pre-order now.

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Hannah Dobson

Managing Editor

I came to Singletrack having decided there must be more to life than meetings. I like all bikes, but especially unusual ones. More than bikes, I like what bikes do. I think that they link people and places; that cycling creates a connection between us and our environment; bikes create communities; deliver freedom; bring joy; and improve fitness. They're environmentally friendly and create friendly environments. I try to write about all these things in the hope that others might discover the joy of bikes too.

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Comments (15)

    One-upmanship for middle class cycling families! £800 for a 16″ wheeled bike? Not a world I’ve ever lived in!

    Agree with DezB. No kids that rides a 16″ or 20″ bike needs one that costs £800 or £1000!

    No adult who rides a bike needs a £4000 bike. If people buy them and kids ride them then jolly good. A company making something expensive is no bad thing, might have trickle down effect on the basic models.

    Has Flashy seen those skin walls yet?

    Hmmm, I ride bikes for a living and so am given/blag some stupidly expensive kit at times which I feel I can justifiably use as a 37 year old with near 30 years of mountain biking behind me, but 800 quid for a 16″ wheeled bike is ridiculous. Both my kids have the ‘standard’ Islabikes which although expensive for kids bikes are worth every penny for the quality of build, materials and light weight but they are way cheaper than these offerings. Why would a six year old ever need a hollow titanium bottom bracket? Even if they are racing the emphasis should be purely on fun and so the bike should be irrelevant. Really they should just be out enjoying the woods and building ramps out of bricks and planks, not worrying if their pedal pins are too heavy. To me this smacks of one-upmanship for parents. Probably the same parents who’ll be heaping pressure on their six year olds to be winning races. If Islabikes have really done this just for their own personal entertainment in terms of fun engineering then fair play but to me it pulls the emphasis away from fun and towards conspicuous consumerism.

    Does seem a bit crazy money for a kids bike, but if they hold their value like the existing Islabikes then it won’t really matter what is costs cos you’ll sell it for a pretty similar price when they are done with it.

    ..assuming that there will be a demand for £800 second hand kids bikes.

    I don’t blame Isla for seeing a gap in the market and going for it

    But it also seems sad. I hope it doesn’t leave some kids feeling that there bike isn’t good enough

    In Forum style I’ll add “Arriving by T5 at a trail center near you…”

    I’m with akira on this. If folk want to spend the money, let them. Ludlow’s finest won’t be holding a gun to anyone’s head.

    No one should pretend there’s any sensible economic reason (resale value, etc) for spending that much on kid’s bikes, but I’m pleased someone is taking kid’s bikes seriously and taking things as far as they can. It’s no more than many of us parents do ourselves to make our kid’s bikes lighter/better, but they’ll do it better. They’ll be trickle down and other brands will raise their game to compete.
    I’m pretty sure there’s a market for these bikes, my slight worry is what that market looks like. I’ve heard parents berating children in races about how much their bike cost, I’d hate for this to raise the stakes in that and contribute further to the pressure you often see at kids races.

    My eldest is on his third Islabike (Beinn24)
    We’ve replaced the tyres with 2.1″ folding Rocket Rons (Isla standard rims wouldn’t go tubeless unfortunately) and I’m thinking of fitting carbon bars and seatpost to save weight, and maybe upgrading the rear mech for the same reason. Not through one-upmanship, nor to race, but just so my scrawny 20kg hyper-boy can enjoy riding as much as possible. And he does. 🙂
    If I had the cash to buy my own dream bike, he’d be getting one too, no questions asked. But we don’t so we’ll have to stick to bargain upgrades.

    Those skinwalls do look good.

    Possibly great for winning the unders 7s cross meeting, but not so good for riding to school and leaving in the bike shed or playing out on the street on.
    If your kid is the next Brad, Gerrant or Froomedog you need to buy this – maybe. Of course if they really are the next B, G or F then they’ll already be winning the local U7s cross meeting on a Tescos BSO.

    Have to agree with ign. Not so good for the practical everyday cycling in terms of potential damage or theft risk. My daughter was spotted out on her Creig 24 whilst with her friends last summer – as a result we were targeted and her brothers identical bike was stolen. Yes, we live in suburban Birmingham and maybe this was overdue – but still I am sure her visibility on an obviously nice bike contributed. As a result she has a cheap, heavy BMX for the street which doesn’t attract attention.

    Surely a lot of what made cycling great for us (certainly me) as kids, was the freedom and fun we could have with our friends. These bikes won’t take you there.

    Weight on a kids bike is much more important than on an adult’s bike, I’d the kid enjoys it then why not splash out. Currently the boys are on Hoys and they do look good on the back of the T5!

    really stupid pricing, early rider belter 16in is under £300 and looks a lot better.

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