new 26er build completed for 8yr old
It’s been a bit of mission, but Urchin’s new 26″ build is now finally finished.
He will be 9 in October and is of average height so I figured we would get more ‘mileage’ out of a dedicated small 26″ wheel frameset than a 24″ which is probably bang on for where he is right now. He had grown out of his Orbea MX20 Team Disc 20″ and also wanted some good front suspension which seems to be lacking on most of the regular ‘kids bikes’ out there.
The route I took was not the cheapest or the easiest, but the result is pretty fantastic. I would have loved one of those nice Vitus 16″ bikes, but everything was out of stock. I didn’t want to buy him a really old 26″ frame (with ancient geometry) so I started by ordering a brand new Voodoo Nzumbi in the 13″ frame size. The frame on this is perfectly designed for small people and is very light (at least the frame itself). Most importantly, they had them in stock and it was delivered next day.
When the bike arrived, I put it together and immediately decided that we couldn’t live with the fluro-orange finish or the very narrow rims. The Suntour 120mm air fork was actually pretty good. The decision was therefore made to do things properly, so the bike was stripped to the bare frameset and every single component fitted to the bike was sold (via STW classifieda) as a ‘complete package’.The frame was then sent off to the powdercoaters for some gloss ‘Audi Nardo Grey’ and I got to work sourcing all the finishing kit from various online suppliers, local bike shops, classifieds and a few bits from my spares box. The final spec reads as follows:-
Voodoo Nzumbi 13” 26” frame with custom Nardo Grey powdercoat finish and blue decals
FSA No.11 1 1/8’ semi-integrated headset
650b Rockshox Reba RL Solo Air forks with 120mm air spring (100m spring currently fitted – I will fit the 120mm when I have a few spare minutes)
Thomson 50mm stem
Renthal Fat Bar Lite 20mm riser bars (cut to 640mm)
Funn lock on grips
Suntour JNR 152mm 104BCD crankset
Wellgo KC001 pedals
Shimano 118mm square taper bottom bracket
Snail 30t narrow/wide chainring
Shimano SLX 11-36 cassette
KMC X10 10-speed black/silver chain
Shimano Zee clutch rear mech
Shimano Zee shifter
EX23 (23mm internal) tubeless-ready rims laced to Superstar V3 hubs with Sapim Leader spokes
Muck Off tubeless tape
A2Z quick releases
Schwalbe Nooby Nic 2.25” Addix TLR tyres
Shimano Deore M6100 front and rear brakes
Snail 160mm floating rotors
Madison Trail youth saddle
Carbon inline 27.2mm seatpost
Urchin absolutely loves the bike and it/he flies. We took it to the jump track at Moors Valley last night for the first ride and he gelled with it immediately. The forks are super-plush, the brakes are bang-on and he can pretty much winch himself up the climbs with the smaller 30t chainring and 36t rear sprocket.
All up cost was just over £1,250 which certainly isn’t cheap for a kids bike, but it is very light, has proper forks and proper wheels and most of the bits can move across to a 650b frameset when he is ready (the fork is 650b already).
This looks amazing – currently in the process of upgrading my twins’ Nzumbis (15″ frames). Got some revelations and rebas to go on as well as slx drivetrains. Is the fork a tapered steerer with an external bottom cup headset?Posted 1 year ago
Nice bike, but £1250!Posted 1 year ago
Awesome build! I bet he loves it.Posted 1 year ago
Ah, the vicarious bike build 🙂
Hope he appreciates it 😀
ps. Moors Valley has a jump track??Posted 1 year ago
@steve – What’s wrong with spending £1,250 if it is affordable?
I would gladly spend whatever I could afford to allow my little one to enjoy his riding to the max’. My own bikes are more than this, but I would definitely say that he gets more enjoyment out of his than I do of mine.
In any respect, as already stated, I can move most of the kit on to the next (27.5″) frame.Posted 1 year ago
@dahn – the headset is non-tapered semi-integrated.Posted 1 year ago
Thanks – going to give the nukeproof external headset bottom cup a go to see if we can get the tapered fork on. Hope your boy is enjoying it! I can’t fault these frames – takes an absolute battering at BPW nearly every weekend and still going strong (granted, my kids are 40kg soaking wet so possibly not the heaviest of cases going on).
I’m 50/50 on mulleting it for them with a 27.5/100×15 wheel, or getting a 26 wheel and 15mm hub. Mainly driven by parts availability at the moment unfortunately.Posted 1 year ago
Regarding the price, 1250 seems perfectly reasonable to me, if you want your kid to hate cycling buy them a cheap, heavy, crap performing bike.Posted 1 year ago
Good job, my wee one is still on her MX20 and will be for a while yet I think, thank god as I don’t fancy trying to get her on a 26″!
Regarding the price, 1250 seems perfectly reasonable to me, if you want your kid to hate cycling buy them a cheap, heavy, crap performing bike.
The two are not mutually exclusive, £1250 is expensive for what it is but it’s not my money so I’m not judging. It could be done cheaper but then these aren’t normal times.Posted 1 year ago
That looks great! My fairly tall 8 year old moved onto a 24” this year but only because her brother will be able to move onto it in a few years and she can then swap to 26” or 27.5”.Posted 1 year ago
@chief – it’s pretty amazing how well the little one fits on the Nzumbi. We don’t even have the seatpost slammed. At the moment we are still running 100mm on the fork, but this weekend I may up it to 120mm which keeps the axle-to-crown in line with the standard build which comes with a pretty tall Suntour 120mm air fork (26 rather than 27.5).
@squirrel : the Orbea MX20 is awesome. My little one absolutely loved it and it was super-pimp. As for the price question… It is all totally relative. I only mentioned the price as some might be curious to know what it costs to build a bike of this bike against an off-the-peg bike. Most parts were brand new, but there were some pretty sharp used purchases (the Reba’s for instance). There are lots out there who have huge amounts of fun on bikes costing buttons and that’s great. I LOVE building bikes and I am in position to spend money on them, so I have no guilt in chucking money at local businesses and suppliers to get exactly what I want. I probably spend too much on my own bikes as I rarely get time to ride them (too busy making money to buy them), but we all get pleasures in our own peculiar little ways. Building pimp bikes is one of mine.
Been riding mountain bikes since 1987 and my passion for riding was a major part of me buying a place in Madeira so I could ride all winter. I just hope my son grows up with the same inspiration. So far so good. He wanted to go to bed wearing the new full face helmet and knees pads that arrived in the post for him today!Posted 1 year ago
too busy making money
Posted 1 year ago
@angallis – I wish it was like that. Lol. What I actually meant was that like many in these times, I seem to spend more time working than anything else, but if my son can enjoy the fruits of this labour, even if I can’t, then that is a great result.Posted 1 year ago
Kids on bikes rock. 🤙
And that little bike is ace. 👍Posted 1 year ago
Will you be my dad please?
Aged 49 1/4Posted 1 year ago
@nbt – oh go on then! you can have my Transition ‘Smugginel’ custom.
Transition Smuggler carbon frame now running 160mm Pike Ultimates up front and a RS Deluxe Ultimate piggyback shock out back. Throw in some Bontrager carbon wheels, Absolute black oval ring, G2 RSC brakes with big rotors, RF Next 35mm carbon bars with Renthal Apex stem and some natty custom black/gold DMR Vaults and that makes for a very bizarre father (aged 43) and son (aged 49 and a bit) relationship.
I shall go on to grow old disgracefully with a Specialized Turbo Levo SL (so i can get back up to the top at Peaselake without breaking a sweat).
Thanks Dad!Posted 1 year ago
Ah yes, the ghastly subject of money…
This sounds horrible, but I’d spend that on a bike for my Daughter, because she loves riding her bike. Her current bike was £600, and it’s ripe for upgrades.
I wouldn’t spend it on my Son, because he’s not really into it. I bought him a £600 Calibre 3 years ago, he rode it once, I sold it when the prices went Mad last Spring, he hasn’t noticed yet.Posted 1 year ago
and most of the bits can move across to a 650b frameset
This. I daren’t work out how much I spent on our kids 24″ bikes (which started as 40 quid Facebook Carrera Blasts but were entirely stripped and rebuilt): it wasn’t £1000+ each but it certainly was not <£500. However when my eldest jumped to 26″ we bought a new frame, a used 650b fork, and my old wheels, so the cost is definitely amortised over time.Posted 1 year ago
I wish I had that sort of budget for my kids bikes (or even mine).
My inner skinflint / knowing the missus spending priorities / having a mortgage to pay tends to override the debate here though.
Plus while my kids like riding, but aren’t really ‘into’ bikes like their Dad is…
My eldest (11) has not long ago moved on to 26″ with an ancient kona frame (£60 off the fleabay) plus some old but ‘nice’ parts are from my pre-parental spares box, so she’s got some (straight steerer) Rebas, (165mm) XT cranks, XTR/XT brakes mixed with a 1×9 X3 drivetrain and cheapy bars/stem/seatpost…
The one thing I was most glad I’d held onto was the pair of 26″ Mavic UST wheels, so she can run a decent tubeless setup for the first time, that’s made a significant difference I think, she noticed the comfier ride/rolling without any input from me.
All in I’ve spent maybe £150 on new/used stuff, but the bike suits her needs quite well for now, the main thing though is the lack of a future 27.5″ upgrade option (I’m not totally sure she’ll need/want that TBH).
The one thing I will spring for at some point is probably a dropper, she’d definitely benefit from one, I think her little sister on the 24er would too…
But Yeah, if you’ve got the option spend the money, they’re only young once…Posted 1 year ago
He doesn’t know it yet, but Jnr is about to inherit my Enigma Ego 26er, Fox, XT, American Classic Race.
He’s just at the top of a Whyte 405, which will be handed down to his sister. He races so it’ll be lighter for him. Although sized for me as “medium” it’s a 17.5 frame and the Whyte 13, so he will fit and get a few years out of it.
It scares me that some of his U14 pals are on Carbon 29ers!Posted 1 year ago
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