Kids bike sizing and Isla bikes and alternatives

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  • Kids bike sizing and Isla bikes and alternatives
  • Premier Icon variflex
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    Have a look at the Orbea 24 inch kids bike (dirt i think).
    Its lighter than the spec bikes and really well made. Comes in around Ā£250 new.

    Premier Icon MoreCashThanDash
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    Ridgeback and Focus also make decent 20″ and 24″ wheeled bikes.

    My godson is a not particularly tall 8 year old and is riding a 24″ Decathlon bike which looks good for the money, albeit lower spec ed maybe than the bigger brands.

    Edit: Forgot to say that the Carrera kids bikes also seem good, LittleMissMC has the 20″ Blast/Luna model, which is a fraction big for her as an average sized 7 year old girl, but plenty of kids on the Tissington Trail on Carreras at the weekend

    Premier Icon nemesis
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    My son has a Carrera Blast 16 and that was pretty good so it’s certainly an option.

    Thanks for the suggestions.

    Premier Icon JonnyHuge
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    Can’t really comment on other bikes but my 9 year old at 132cm rides a Beinn 24 which I can comment on.

    At 130cm your son would definitely enjoy riding a Beinn 24 now. My son has approx. 4 inches of seat tube showing, the seat is a bit forward and the bars are about an inch below their top position on the steerer tube so growing room all around but not too big now. He’ll be riding it all this year and maybe all of next year. If you’re near Reading at all then you’re more than welcome to try it out. Another thing is that Islabikes are nice and light and when out riding with his friends they all tire before he does (even the 10/11 year olds) and I would put this a lot down to the weight of the bike – or possibly the lack of heavy components and cheap suspension that doesn’t really work for kids.

    Just a word on Islabikes service though to put that Ā£350 in context. 8 years ago I bought a Beinn 20 and a Beinn 24 (Ā£200 each at the time). The Beinn 24 was been used by my 3 boys and been loaned out ‘for the season’ to 2 cousins and one friends kids in that time. Yes it’s had drive train bits etc. replaced but it’s been a favourite with all of them. That was until the frame snapped at the head tube weld about 2 months ago. I phoned up Islabikes in the hope that they may do a deal on a frame – like trade price or something bearing in mind that their warranty is for 5 years. After a really helpful phone call and sending photos in of the frame, Islabikes sent a courier to pick the bike up as they wanted to look at it themselves. 2 days later I got a call saying they’d like to replace the bike FOC. I was gobsmacked and my son is over the moon and now rides around on a brand new bike. Just brilliant šŸ™‚

    Premier Icon ads678
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    I’ve just got an Orbea mx20 dirt for my lad, also going from a carrera blast 16. It’ll be too small for you son but does look very well made and although it is heavier than the isla equivalent it’s still a pretty light weight bike, and no where near as expensive.

    I went for the rigid version as i thought the suss forks on the carrera ended just being needless weight on the front end, pulling the front up over kerbs is made harder as the forks take all your effort out. My lad still ends up just crashing through kerbs event though he’s yanking up the front end.

    I’m now looking for 1 1/8th stearer rigid 16″ forks to replace them before my daughter gets the carrera.

    Premier Icon nemesis
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    My son is almost 6 but very tall for his age – 130cm at present, over 99.6th centile – so more like an average 8 year old. He’s very much grown out of his 16″ wheeled bike but seems to be between 20 and 24″ bikes.

    Can anyone offer any guidance based on experience of similar height kids – according to Isla, the Beinn 24 is from 127cm but I note that other brands seem to size bigger with 130 or 135 being the cutoff for a 24″ wheel bike.

    I don’t really want to get a 20″ bike now and in less than 9 months (based on the height charts) be needing a 24″ one but at the same time I don’t want him to not enjoy riding his bike this summer because it’s too big for him. Then there’s the cost – Mrs Clubber isn’t going to sign off on a Ā£350 bike (the Isla) and second hand ones go for silly money and seem pretty rare around where we live anyway.

    FWIW, he rode a Spesh Hotrock 24 and he can ride it but it does look big for him, particularly the height of the front end.

    So, alternatives? Most others seems fairly heavy (you get what you pay for I guess) though I see plenty of kids happily riding them so maybe need to get away from my own thoughts on weight.

    Also, the Hoy bikes looks good – slightly cheaper than the Isla bikes but look like they’re well designed and spec’d – anyone had one for their kids?

    Premier Icon nemesis
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    Thanks again.

    I don’t doubt that the Isla bikes are good value (particularly when you consider the resale value) but it’s still a case of HOW MUCH?! that’s going to be an issue…

    Yeah, I think I’d go rigid too ideally

    I can check my 8YO’s height tonight. He’s got the Beinn 20 large and I was about to buy the 24.
    One of his mates, who is 9YO and a fair bit bigger has the Beinn 26 as recommended on the IB website and it is categorically too big for mountain biking. I was quite surprised that IB has the ‘wrong’ size info on their website.

    Sorry, my point is:

    If he wants to do any technical off road on it then in general I’d be wary about getting the bigger size that IB recommends on the website.

    Just got a Frog 55 for my daughter, seem very similar in terms of build quality and kit to isla, a fair bit cheaper, but unsure of sell on popularity.

    lardman
    Member

    My six year old rides a Beinn 20 small. He’s on the 98th percentile too, and alot taller than his peers.
    He could easily go to a 24″ bike now, but he enjoys the fact that he can manouvre his bike very well still due to good standover.

    here’s the sizing
    video

    ooh interesting Orbea heads up, thanks!

    scruff
    Member

    I’m looking for one for my tall 6 year old, hes not sure if he wants a BMX or MTB style but Winstanleys seems to be the best for choice. He doesn’t want an Islabike as the name is too girly šŸ˜›

    Premier Icon nemesis
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    The Orbea MX24 looks good, particularly for the money but suggested height is 135cm. Anyone’s kid(s) got one?

    Premier Icon takisawa2
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    My lad has a Hotrock 24 picked up S/H, from here last summer.
    He’s about 120cm (I think, will measure him later..).
    Hotrock fits him fine.

    If your buying new the Carrerra Blast at Ā£199 is a nice bit of kit.
    Same weight as the Hotrock (yes, I took my luggage scales in to Halfords). Lose the suss forks in favour of a rigid & you can take another pound or two off, then its pretty much the same weight as the Isla.

    I’ve some 420mm RC31’s to go on my my lads Hotrock, along with some 1×10 stuff. Getting nice (light-weight) 24″ rims is impossible.

    If you’re in the market for a 24″ bike then I guess you’ll be of suitable body weight to actually take advantage of suspension forks? (Provided you ride off road).

    The ones on my son’s 20″ Hotrock are kinda poor, and he’d most likely ride just a well off road with rigid ones and enjoy the KG saving in weight.

    However the older he gets more suspension makes sense to me.

    Premier Icon nemesis
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    I don’t know – my son’s tall but relatively light for his height (99.6% for height, 75 for weight). I always figured that taking one spring out of the forks would probably make them a lot better.

    bartimaeus
    Member

    Islabikes out ‘big wheels’ on their bikes – so an Islabikes 24″ is designed for a smaller child than a typical 24″ bike. It’s a bit like comparing a 29er to a 26er or a 650b – the wheelsize is not the bike size.

    In my experience the Islabikes sizing charts are spot on – but it’s always worth giving them a call as their staff are very helpful

    Premier Icon TomB
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    My lad is 6, 124cm and rides the Beinn 20 small. Trouble is, we want to move his sister on to it but I have a feeling getting him a Beinn 20 large may be a waste of time due to short time of usage. I’m wondering when he could get away with moving onto the 24. His inside leg fits according to IB’s size chart, but he’s 3cm short. If anyone has one in the lakes I’d be keen to try him on it?

    Premier Icon richwales
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    If he’s 130cm get the 24. My daughter is the same height and is much more comfortable on her sisters 24 beinn than her own 20″. The bigger bike is a lot more stable too.

    Premier Icon jameso
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    New Hoy 24″? Al frame and forks, 1×8 gearing.

    Premier Icon nemesis
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    Tempting but Ā£100 more than the Orbea though it does look great.

    isitafox
    Member

    My son moved up from a 16″ Hotrock to a Frog 55. I heard people saying they’d rather pay the extra and get an Islabikes as the equivalent bike is 1kg lighter but I don’t think it makes that much difference. My son absolutely loves his and I definitely won’t hesitate in getting my other lad a Frog when he’s ready.

    Premier Icon takisawa2
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    Correction…my lads 130cm on a Hotrock 24.
    That Hoy bike up there looks good.

    ruddy
    Member

    Can recommend the frog bikes. Bought my daughter one earlier in the year and it is fantastic.

    We’ve been doing Frog here this year and they’re great – using them in the hire fleet and have them available to demo too.

    Easy to size up according to standover height, better pricing than Isla, and they’re light and reliable too.

    clubber
    Member

    Talking to my son last night, another important requirement came up – he’d really like an orange bike… (orange, not Orange)

    Anyone got or tried a Felt Q24?

    http://www.feltbicycles.com/International/2014/Bikes/mountain-kids/q-kids-series/q24.aspx

    wiggles
    Member

    Frog bikes are orange

    clubber
    Member

    Unfortunately it looks like the Frog 60 is only available in purple

    clubber
    Member

    Actually, just realised that most of them are listed as ‘hybrids’ rather than mtb so the 62 is orange…

    http://www.frogbikes.com/lightweight-kids-bikes/hybrid-bikes/frog62.aspx

    poah
    Member

    the SR suntour fork on most of the 24 inch bikes are just plain bad as it wont compress under the weight of the kids. Yo ucan take one of the springs out and that makes a difference. ultimately if you want a suspension fork then there are only a couple that are worth while. The spinner air 24 and the RST first air 24.

    my son is 133cm and has the Beinn 20 Large which is on the small side. Iā€™m about to get the 24ā€ version

    scruff
    Member

    My lad was 127cm last night, should I be thinking about a 24inch?

    peabrain
    Member

    My almost 8 year old is 133cm and has been riding a Hotrock 24 for a few months. It is heavy (just about to lighten it up a bit with a Spinner Air) but he does really well with it.

    I’d say for the type of riding he does (technical singletrack/Laggan red and black) it is only just small enough

    poah
    Member

    I got my son the RST’s air, compression and rebound adjust.

    http://www.bike-discount.de/en/buy/f1rst-air-24-mtb-federgabel-schwarz-51499?currency=3&delivery_country=190

    I enquired about the spinners ones too

    lukasz.nowak@bluepill.pl

    Spinner AIR 24ā€ and price (including shipping to UK plus VAT) is 105,78 USD.

    More details about the product you can find by following link below:

    http://www.spinner-usa.com/en/products/?method=detail&aid=247

    That was last novemember

    natrix
    Member

    Although Islabikes are expensive to buy, they hold their value, so if you sell it on, the overall cost is minimal.

    Premier Icon nemesis
    Subscriber

    So, for anyone else looking at this thread for advice, I went for the Felt Q24 in the end

    http://www.feltbicycles.com/International/2014/Bikes/mountain-kids/q-kids-series/q24.aspx

    And it seems pretty spot on size-wise – he’s obviously towards the small end of the sizing but he can ride it fine. The bike is nice – proper mtb parts on it. It’s not as light as an Isla bike but it’s not overly heavy. The fork seems about right in terms of spring rate.

    The only negative I can really come up with is that the wheels needed some truing though it’s worth noting that I got the bike in a box straight from the distributor so it hadn’t been PDI’d or anything beforehand.

    nre
    Member

    Ref suspension forks for kids, I picked up some pristine retro RST XMO air forks (the ‘made in the USA’ versions) for Ā£30, they are for 26″ wheels but the axle to crown length was almost the same as the Suntours that came off my daughter’s Carrera Luna 24. The Luna has disc brakes so no issues with brake bosses being in the wrong place. Saved over 1.5 lb in one hit. Swapping tyres and a few other choice spec changes saved another 1.5 lb.

    Premier Icon nemesis
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    I was going to measure the fork to see if that might be a possibility. Sounds like 26″ could work then.

    nre
    Member

    I think any oldish, shortish travel air forks will be about the right length, I was looking at early SIDs but the XMOs ended up being perfect for the money. Setup super soft so they actually move in use…! šŸ˜€

    Premier Icon nemesis
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    Funnily enough, I had been eyeing up the Indys on mrs nemesis’ bike – this may actually be a suitable use for the noodle-tech legs šŸ™‚

    Or maybe it could be a 46er šŸ™‚

Viewing 42 posts - 1 through 42 (of 42 total)

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