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Bike for my 6 year old?(7 posts)

Bike for my 6 year old?Scot_Gore
Feb 16, 2002 9:54 PM
The family and I are getting ready for the 2002 summer riding season. My daughter recently turned 6 and is currently riding her 3rd toysRus special. We took the training wheels off toward the end of last season. She's still pretty shakey on the two wheeler but this will likely be the season she'll find her riding confidence. She can ride on the trailer bike for 20+ miles at a time and is helping Dad out much of the time.

The toysRus bike is too small and I want to get her a "decent" childs bike.

Does anyone have recommendations or experience with buying children their first real bike. I'd love to get something with some gears and hand brakes, but question if I'd really be doing her any favors with them. This may just be Dad's great wish that she'll be able to use the gears and stop with hand brakes.

I'd love to hear from parents who already crossed this milestone regarding the kinds of bikes they got for their kids and what worked and what didn't.

The posting a couple a weeks ago from the Dad whose 6 & 8 year old daughters rode a MS150 made me think anythings possible.


re: Bike for my 6 year old?Wolfgang
Feb 17, 2002 6:26 AM
My son will be 6 next month and last fall I got a Trek Mtn. Lion 60 for him and its perfect. Its a six speed Shimano SIS, with hand brakes. I did replace the knobby tires with semi-slick tires for less rolling resistance on the road. Bad thing, no place for water bottle. I got the smallest CamelBak made for him.
Enjoy teaching this sport the togetherness is GREAT!

re: Bike for my 6 year old?mhinman
Feb 17, 2002 10:03 AM
My son is turning 7 in two weeks and I am looking at the Mountain Lion 60 and the Gary Fisher Cosmos. Very similar bikes except that the Gary Fisher has a front suspension fork. Currently he has a Trek Mountain Cub (16 inch) with a rear hand brakes which he loves. My son has ridden the Mountain Lion, but I have not been able to find a Cosmo instock yet. The Mountain Lion seem to be well built and is reasonable light, at least by kid bike standards.

I would be careful with the Mountain Lion 60 and a six year old, it may be a little too big for her this year. Make sure you let her try it out first before you buy it. I know it is nice to surprise her with the bike on her birthday, but if the bike is too big it will be extremely frustrating for her to learn ride. It sounds like she is currently on a 12 inch bike, and is a little shaky on 2 wheels. I would recommend going to the 16 inch bike until she masters riding 2 wheels, because she will be big enough to control the 16 inch bike, where as if the bike is too big, it will end up controlling her and slow her progress.

Right now my 4 year old daughter, who was learning to ride her 12 inch bike in the late summer, had a bad accident by kids standards anyway, and is still terrified to get back on her bike. I am hoping to get her back on her bike this spring, but I can tell it is going to be difficult.

Good luck
another optionLuis
Feb 17, 2002 11:06 AM
Our 6 year old boy has a Specialized Hotrock 20, that seems pretty good. SRAM Gripshift, hand brakes, and the geometry seems stable. They make a girls model, but I haven't seen it. He seemed to get the idea of the gears and the hand brakes pretty quickly last season.
Just bought for our 8 yr old...dmoller
Feb 18, 2002 6:21 AM
daughter a 20" bike from Target after not wanting to drop over $200 for a trek. She'd been riding the 16" for a couple years and is having a little challenge on the new bike for a couple reasons: trying to get used to the hand brakes, shifting, the bike's kind of heavy and controls her a little and small hands make it harder to grip the brakes. One thought that bears repeating: you get what you pay for. Either the derauiller needs adjusting or its a piece of crap b/c it doesn't shift into 1st or 6th gear, often shifts two gears at a time and the chain makes a horrible rubbing noise. I may bite the bullet and drop the $$ on a better bike afterall.
I'd steer away from geared bikes.look271
Feb 18, 2002 9:20 AM
My oldest daughter (now 9) went from a Raliegh "Lil' honey" single speed @ age 5 to a single speed "Jazzie"(who comes up with theses names, anyway?!) at about 7 and now she has a 24 speed trail bike (Fuji). It's an adult's size with the seat down as low as it will go. She won't need a new bike for a long time! Her sister (7) has inherited the "Jazzie". Shifting is something to be learned when they are more confident. They've both logged lots of time on those ss's.
re: Bike for my 6 year old?Jerbo
Feb 19, 2002 5:52 PM
A great bike is a used Raleigh Capri. These bikes must be about 10 or 15 years old but the frame size is great for small kids and the components are functional.

I bought one for my daughter at a Salvation Army store $10, and I junk picked one for my son a $20 repair. This past year my family completed a 5 day 275 mile tour across Michigan. My nine year old daughter rode her Capri with no problem.