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Thread: Kids bike--Advice

  1. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by SilverGS View Post
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    Are department store bikes for kids really that bad if all you are going to do is ride around the neighborhood and park pathways for the most part? The seem to only use them for a year or two anyway. I've been looking for a used bike for my son as well but wasn't too concerned about brand yet. Just something in good condition and good price. Is it that much nicer to have front/full suspension?

    I know nothing about bikes in general and even less so for kids bikes that they grow out of quickly.

    Even some of the department store bikes seem to run 400-500 brand new.
    I guess that depends on lifestyle? I grew up on department store BMX bikes. Heavy as hell and didn’t perform remotely as well as the proper bikes at the skate park or dirt jumps/tracks... but since that wasn’t my “sport” of choice... it was what it was. I think with the popularity of mountain biking these days it’s worth it to get something with proper suspension if you live near fish creek or another area of town with trails. Especially if you want to make it a “family activity” and get a little involved in the sport yourself.

  2. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by SilverGS View Post
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    Are department store bikes for kids really that bad if all you are going to do is ride around the neighborhood and park pathways for the most part? The seem to only use them for a year or two anyway. I've been looking for a used bike for my son as well but wasn't too concerned about brand yet. Just something in good condition and good price. Is it that much nicer to have front/full suspension?

    I know nothing about bikes in general and even less so for kids bikes that they grow out of quickly.

    Even some of the department store bikes seem to run 400-500 brand new.
    They'll last a year or two, it won't matter as much if it's just a cul-de-sac cruiser or whatever. They just have crappy parts, crappy brakes, etc. They are always grossly overpriced and full of off-brand parts.

    The thing is you can buy a good used bike or even an entry level bike from a good manufacturer that is a million times better for the same or hardly any more money, so there is little point buying the crappy brands which aren't always cheaper anyway.

    The department store bikes draw people in who know nothing about bikes, and think that $400 for a full suspension bike is a good deal compared to a $1000 bike that doesn't even have rear suspension.

    You don't need suspension at all if it's not going to leave pavement. If you want to do some light trail riding, get something with front suspension if possible - it'll save his wrists on the bumps if nothing else. Anything more than that I would want full suspension, but if this is a temporary bike for a kid you probably don't want to take it that far.

    The point of diminishing return for a decent bike is very low, especially if you buy something gently used, enough so that you can safely avoid the Canadian Tire and department store junk.

  3. #23
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    Both my boys first bikes came from either Sportchek, Walmart or Canadian Tire.. all lasted.. but are quite heavy, and were starting to show more wear than I think they should have. (Cheap plastic pedals, powdercoat chipping off etc)

    I wanted to go with something a bit better so thats why I went used, as it was spending around the same as the department store bikes but getting a way better bike. We are hoping to get in more 'family' rides, and he enjoys riding, so I went with one that his skill level wouldnt surpass.

  4. #24
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    Thanks for the tips.

    I will probably still be looking at used for now but will try and look for the better brands over department store versions.
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  5. #25
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    I buy my kids ~$20-30 used bikes from bike recycling places. If you're willing to go through the rows of bikes there's usually something there with safe brakes, a good seat, recent tires and is otherwise in okay shape. Cosmetically they're not the greatest but they're going to crash it a couple times, drop it and outgrow it in a couple years anyway. The best part is when you're done with them you can easily sell them for what you paid.
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