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  • ‘step through’ mountainbike frames
  • Premier Icon lovewookie
    Full Member

    My wife hasn’t the hip mobility she once had, so we’ve been talking about swapping her current mountainbike frame for something more step through. She has a pendleton dutch bike, but finds it a bit unstable, and it looks a bit too much like a girls bike.

    I was very close to buying this: https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/304171804844 but missed out.

    what else is there that’s not just a BSO, but also isn’t £1k?

    Requirements:
    doesn’t look like a girls bike, so neutral colours
    room for a 100mm 26″ wheel fork.
    26″ mtb wheels, or something that wouldn’t look too odd with 26″ wheels.
    disc brake tabs.
    Suitable for someone of 5’8, so around 17″ I’d think, which rules out a low slung more normal frame.

    there are a few cheaper modelled MTB’s out there I think, but most step through are 700c hybrid types, or V brake BSO’s, or the Islabikes Jimi, which she says looks a bit to much like her pendleton and is too expensive.

    any ideas?

    ta

    Premier Icon gonefishin
    Free Member

    In the STW spirit of not actually answering the question that is asked have you tried getting on and off a normal bike differently? I have hip mobility problems too and I find that laying the bike down, stepping over it (essentially straddling it) then bringing it upright between your legs. It’s a bit of a faff I’ll not lie but it does mean I can keep riding normal bikes.

    Premier Icon ayjaydoubleyou
    Free Member

    Given its intended use based on your description of the bike and wife this might be a silly suggestion – but dropper post?

    Might make it easier to swing the leg over to mount with the seat down?

    Premier Icon chakaping
    Full Member

    Is it just the frame colour on the Pendleton?

    Might be easier to do something about that?

    Premier Icon voodoo-rich
    Full Member

    A Liv Tempt might not be far off, this came in 26″ a few years back.

    Premier Icon lovewookie
    Full Member

    I have hip mobility problems too and I find that laying the bike down, stepping over it (essentially straddling it) then bringing it upright between your legs

    tried that, she finds it too awkward.

    Given its intended use based on your description of the bike and wife this might be a silly suggestion – but dropper post?

    That’s actually a really good idea. it’s a Gary Fisher MTB from about 2007/8 she has, so a fairly dropped top tube anyway, but she can’t get her foot high enough to get it over the top tube. if she lowered the saddle and slid on it from behind, then raised the saddle, that may work. I’ll need to check how much seatpost she has out of the frame, but a 100mm dropper may work if there’s enough space.

    Is it just the frame colour on the Pendleton?

    No, it’s the stability. it’s got very light feeling steering that can be a bit twitchy. combined with 700 x 35c tyres when she’s used to 26x 2.1 and her dyspraxia and it robs her of confidence.
    she’s not the most experienced cyclist, but does miss getting out, and is hoping to use her bike to do a commute along the canal path as a more sustainable way to travel while improving fitness and losing weight.

    Premier Icon scotroutes
    Full Member

    I’d be looking at something from the Cube “Touring” range.

    Premier Icon PJay
    Free Member

    Isla Bikes do a step through rigid mountain bike which Cycling UK seem to think is decent. It’s aimed at older cyclists but I don’t see why it shouldn’t work.

    What they don’t seem to do is a frame only option but I don’t know if there’d be any way of getting hold of one if you contacted them.

    [Edit]

    Sorry, I hadn’t spotted that you’d already discounted the Jimi – ignore.

    Premier Icon sirromj
    Full Member

    Another in the STW spirit post of inappropriate suggestions Tom Cardy’s “signature move” – the Cardigan (though fairly sure kids having been doing similar for decades), lay bike down, with cranks positioned so pedal in top position on ground, walk up to it, push one foot on other pedal and use other foot to lift saddle:
    https://youtu.be/nhv9ClCpfgc?t=56

    Premier Icon sharkattack
    Free Member

    …so a fairly dropped top tube anyway, but she can’t get her foot high enough to get it over the top tube. if she lowered the saddle and slid on it from behind, then raised the saddle, that may work

    I might be wrong but isn’t that how people mount bicycles anyway? I don’t think I’ve ever stepped over my top tube. I’d probably do my own hips in. Could probably manage it on a BMX but it would still be a weird way to get on.

    I always swing my leg over from behind the saddle. I am in the habit of always dropping my post whenever I come to a stop which makes it easier.

    You’ve got me confused about how I get on and off my bike now.

    Premier Icon 5lab
    Free Member

    you might do well buying a reasonable, burly 2nd hand steel frame (ie, a 456 or similar) – then having a local frame welder re-locate the top tube way further down. That way you get proper mtb geo with also proper step through access, and probably at a cost that is pretty reasonable

    Premier Icon ayjaydoubleyou
    Free Member

    I might be wrong but isn’t that how people mount bicycles anyway?

    Perhaps not if you learnt as a five year old girl in a dress on a step through. Habit is a powerful thing

    Premier Icon lovewookie
    Full Member

    I might be wrong but isn’t that how people mount bicycles anyway? I don’t think I’ve ever stepped over my top tube. I’d probably do my own hips in. Could probably manage it on a BMX but it would still be a weird way to get on.

    while you’re right in a way, if mounting a bike the traditional way, you swing your leg over the saddle, whilst leaning the bike toward you a little. if she tried that, she’d need to lean the bike so far that it’d be difficult to step over it to get on. her approach has been to lean the bike over and put her leg over the lowest part, which is the top tube.

    Premier Icon joeydeacon
    Free Member

    Might have already considered it, but would something like an old school Haro frame be suitable?

    https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Haro-Werks-XCT-MTB-Frame-17-5-Retro-/115025459235?hash=item1ac80d3823%3Ag%3AqmwAAOSw0x1hWYeJ&nma=true&si=BMK5txSiXxViIiAHtLkD8IfrkcM%253D&orig_cvip=true&nordt=true&rt=nc&_trksid=p2047675.l2557 – Sold but shows the sloping/curved crossbar which would make mounting a bit easier?

    Premier Icon nedrapier
    Full Member

    Premier Icon nedrapier
    Full Member

    Or, maybe a bit more usefully, have a search for “mixte” frames. originally intended as “unisex” bikes, so a bit less ladies’ bike style

    I built up a Pinnacle Chromium 2 for my wife. I ride it a fair bit as it’s the only bike we can fit the MacRide and the Hamax on for nursery runs with both boys. Basket on the front too, so great for town errands.

    It’s a nice bike, I’d recommend it.

    https://www.cyclinguk.org/cycle/bike-test-pinnacle-chromium-2-mixte-%C2%A3700

    Premier Icon 5lab
    Free Member

    I might be wrong but isn’t that how people mount bicycles anyway?

    I’ve got a bakfiets with no top tube (so just a bar running along the floor at crank height). I step-through to get onto it. its a joy.

    a mate of mine mounts/unmounts his brompton in a similar way. Watching him pull up to us on his mountain bike, sweep his left foot to the right, straight into the top tube, and falling flat on his face (as he forgot what bike he was on) was a joy

    Premier Icon joshvegas
    Free Member

    if mounting a bike the traditional way, you swing your leg over the saddle, whilst leaning the bike toward you a little

    I think you will find the traditional way is to kick off then climb up using the pegs on the frame.

    Premier Icon slowol
    Free Member

    If it’s for roads and paths then Temple cycles do a good looking step through frame. Specialized Crossroads or Liv Alight might be OK but slightly lower spec. Pashley do a 531 framed mixte frame on one of their bikes. Meeting the disc criterion is the hardest bit. My wife has a Specialized Aerial which has discs and used to come in a mixte frame option before they decided that Wem had to make do with riding man shaped bikes (one of my wife’s bugbears as she has long legs and a short back).
    https://www.templecycles.co.uk/pages/step-through-collection

    Thinking sideways the Thorn Nomad from SJS cycles is available as a step through frame. 26 inch wheel but £650 frame only if you can transfer parts might just get it in your price point. Seems as though Thorn has finally relented and now fits disc tabs to his frames too!
    https://www.sjscycles.co.uk/thorn-step-through-frames/

    It is a fairly poor show though. My father in law has this issue and got a cube e bike that is step thru so he can keep up on club runs (the CTC retired bunch regularly do 50 plus mile rides)

    Edit: Marin have decent looking hybrids with discs and mixte frame but 700c wheels. Is that a possible compromise?

    Premier Icon jkomo
    Full Member

    I thought dropper post as well, but it’s always nice to have a project.
    Evans always had ladies Pinnacle frames really cheap but I haven’t looked for ages.

    Premier Icon fossy
    Full Member

    MrsF has a dropper on her FS – otherwise she wouldn’t be able to get on it.

    I suffer back stiffness after a couple of hours on the MTB (previosuly broken back) and it’s dead handy having the dropper to get on and off without having to lift my hips so far.

    Premier Icon mick_r
    Full Member

    Thorn did a step through frame but not the best looker and very spendy.
    https://www.sjscycles.co.uk/thorn-step-through-frames/

    A steel mtb frame could be converted to something similar but better looking by a framebuilder. What is her current mtb? I’d offer to do it but packed all the brazing stuff up for a house move and will be too busy for quite a few months after that.

    Premier Icon cookeaa
    Full Member

    I was looking at a carerra crossfire frame on eBay the other day for my missus, seemed very much like what you described OP.

    A dropped Top tube MTB frame with disc mount and what looked like a 44mm head tube…

    Premier Icon convert
    Full Member

    At a slightly (a lot) different price point, I’ve been looking for a step thru eMTB for my wife for similar health issues.

    The BULLS E-STREAM EVO 1 WAVE 27,5+ would be a go to if it actually existed in real life, but I can’t find it in the UK at least.

    Slightly more attainable (just as expensive but possibly orderable) are the cube range…..

    Premier Icon matt_outandabout
    Full Member

    I passed a Cube eBike step through MTB at the weekend.

    Premier Icon matt_outandabout
    Full Member

    Edit – like that one!

    Premier Icon MoreCashThanDash
    Full Member

    Have this problem with MrsMC due to her disability- as she is extra short she got away with a Pinnacle Kauri, which is technically a 26″ kids bike, but probably too short for you OP

    Premier Icon stevie750
    Full Member

    what about a custom Marino? As long as she isn’t in a rush

    Premier Icon eep
    Full Member

    Marin larkspur?

    Mildred Locke has been very positive about it and can be specced with a dropper post.

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