- Kids bike sizing and Isla bikes and alternatives
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 weekendPosted 3 years agoJonnyHugeSubscriber
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 £350 in context. 8 years ago I bought a Beinn 20 and a Beinn 24 (£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 🙂Posted 3 years agoads678Subscriber
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.Posted 3 years ago
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 £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?Posted 3 years ago
I can check my 8YO’s height tonight. He’s got the Beinn 20 large and I was about to buy the 24.Posted 3 years ago
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.takisawa2Subscriber
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 £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.Posted 3 years agoThe Swedish ChefMember
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.Posted 3 years agobartimaeusMember
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 helpfulPosted 3 years agoTomBSubscriber
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?Posted 3 years agoisitafoxMember
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.Posted 3 years ago
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?Posted 3 years ago
Actually, just realised that most of them are listed as ‘hybrids’ rather than mtb so the 62 is orange…Posted 3 years agopoahMember
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.Posted 3 years agopeabrainMember
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 enoughPosted 3 years ago
Anyone got a link to the Spinner air fork? Is it this one?Posted 3 years agopoahMember
I got my son the RST’s air, compression and rebound adjust.
I enquired about the spinners ones too
Spinner AIR 24” and price (including shipping to UK plus VAT) is 105,78 USD.
More details about the product you can find by following link below:
That was last novememberPosted 3 years ago
So, for anyone else looking at this thread for advice, I went for the Felt Q24 in the end
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.
Posted 3 years agonreMember
Ref suspension forks for kids, I picked up some pristine retro RST XMO air forks (the ‘made in the USA’ versions) for £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.Posted 3 years ago
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