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thread: Kids' bikes - do you get what you pay for?

  1. #1
    BellyBelly Member

    Apr 2006
    Perth
    4,203

    Kids' bikes - do you get what you pay for?

    We're getting DDs 1 and 2 new bikes for Christmas - they've still got their first bike and they're just ridiculously small now. I had hoped that they would both be just ok on a 20" bike so that we would get years and years worth out of them, but DD1 is a good 8cm off the absolute minimum height and DD2 is waaaay off so the smaller bikes it is.

    When we first started looking and thought we were looking for bikes for the next 5+ years we were looking at good quality bikes - around $200. Now that I know DD1 will be lucky to not outgrow this year's bike within 18 months I'm reluctant to pay that sort of money when Kmart, Target etc have bikes for around $80. But . . . she won't need training wheels, we'll be riding out and about rather than just on our driveway (which is 150 metres long but obviously level, well paved etc) so I'm really torn what to do. These new bikes will get a whole heap more (and harder) use than their current ones have.



    Does anyone have idea if its a case of you get what you pay for, or is it just you pay ridiculously more for going to a bike shop?? Thanks.

  2. #2
    Registered User

    Apr 2008
    Melbourne
    6,745

    You do get what you pay for. The cheap ones are generally much heavier, so harder to pedal and dont have great geo for kids so they don't fir them properly and they break so don't last as long. We got dd1 a ByK one which dd2 now has and it is almost as good as new. We will be able to sell it after dd2 as well as they hold value.

  3. #3
    2013 BellyBelly RAK Recipient.

    Apr 2006
    Winter is coming
    5,000

    I think that you do get what you pay for. DS had an $80 12 inch bike which served it's purpose but it is way heavier than the brand name ones and after two years we had replaced the peddles and a few screws here and there. He got a Mongoose 16 inch for his 5th birthday and I expect it will last him at least a couple of years because he isn't that big. DD got a mongoose 12 inch and it is much lighter than DS's first one.

  4. #4
    Thankful for the kindness of my 2012 RAK making me Life member

    Jul 2007
    melb
    8,498

    Our boys are getting bikes for Christmas and we are getting mongoose, they felt more secure and better quality pushing around the shop and not wobbly and dodgy like the target and toys r us ones we looked at.

  5. #5
    BellyBelly Life Member - Love all your MCN friends
    Add Gigi on Facebook

    Jun 2004
    The Festival State
    3,008

    good topic, i bet many people will be wondering the same thing, lead up to xmas etc.

  6. #6
    Life Member. Every Australian needs a Farmer.

    Dec 2005
    In Bankworld with Barbara
    14,222

    Honestly, I'm not sure that you get what you pay for. I've seen repco brand bikes in Bigw and they are cheaper, but they still look just as good a quality as the repco bikes we have paid nearly $300 each for from an independent toy shop. If they are growing out of them pretty quick, the cheaper ones would realistically be the better option because though cheap, they still aren't going to wear them out quicker than what they will grow out of them and when they are a lot older, then spend the big $$ on a bike.

  7. #7
    BellyBelly Member

    Feb 2008
    Gold Coast, QLD
    1,563

    Re: Kids' bikes - do you get what you pay for?

    I searched all over every toy shop for a bike a couple of months ago, trying to find a decent size with a seat that could be low enough for my little 4yo. Settled on one from target which is OK, it's not like it's getting heavy use.

    However, when I put it together I couldn't figure out the brakes, so I went to a local bike shop and they had all kinds of great kids bikes for not that much more than I paid so I felt like a bit of an idiot for looking in toy stores instead of bike shops. Duh.

  8. #8
    BellyBelly Life Subscriber

    Sep 2008
    Melbourne
    3,300

    You do get what you pay for. The cheap ones are generally much heavier, so harder to pedal and dont have great geo for kids so they don't fir them properly and they break so don't last as long. We got dd1 a ByK one which dd2 now has and it is almost as good as new. We will be able to sell it after dd2 as well as they hold value.
    Trying to convince DH about this now - I had convinced myself on a ByK one for DD (who won't ride a balance bike as she thinks are for babies, but wants to ride a bike - so she is going to have to learn using stabilizers and DS can go balance bike route) - but I hadn't actually checked out the price. We never buy anything for the kids so I am ok with it as am working, and would rather spend more money on a bike she will ride than less on one that is too heavy - I don't think she has much leg strength and she is heavy enough herself so think is important the bike is light.

    How do you work out the size - looking at the height suggestions on the ByK site seems DD would need the 350 rather than 250 as she is about 107cm - does that sound right - they look kind of big. I am not that worried about it lasting her forever as DS can have it later or can sell it but just keen to get her riding.

  9. #9
    BellyBelly Member

    Jan 2005
    Riverina, NSW
    242

    We had a few cheaper bikes and they weren't worth the money. So hard to ride and so much heavier than the more expensive ones. I would go to a bike shop and take a look. We have a few trek bikes and a giant brand one. Both were around $200-250. We have one that four kids have now used to learn to ride on and it's brilliant. Lasted great and is much easier to ride than the kmart one we got as a gift. Good luck shopping

  10. #10
    BellyBelly Member

    Aug 2006
    1,074

    We had one from toys r us when DS was 4 and it was awful. Heavy, pedals falling off all the time. We decided as he was so tall time to upgrade. We could tell just by him getting on one at the bike shop that it was totally different. Much better quality and measured up exactly for his size with room for him to grow into. He rides it for hours whereas he struggled with the old one.

  11. #11
    Registered User

    Apr 2008
    Melbourne
    6,745

    Yes dd2 is on a 350 now and it will last her another year or so. It was handed down from dd1 and still in good condition. Second hand on eBay can often be good. Dp is at Velo in Carlton on Sunday so if you can get in there he can fit her fr the bike if you are unsure.

  12. #12
    Moderator

    Dec 2006
    Smidgen-ville
    3,736

    wysiwyg - we love our byk. So much better value than the $50 12' bike we bought from Ananconda which was almost as heavy as my own bike.
    Our kids have looked very little on their byks but they don't struggle with them because of the great design.

  13. #13
    BellyBelly Life Subscriber

    Sep 2008
    Melbourne
    3,300

    Yes dd2 is on a 350 now and it will last her another year or so. It was handed down from dd1 and still in good condition. Second hand on eBay can often be good. Dp is at Velo in Carlton on Sunday so if you can get in there he can fit her fr the bike if you are unsure.
    Is that all Sundays or just this one? We have something on this Sunday but otherwise that would be good - I expect our DD are similar size, just mine hasn't had a bike yet, so seeing someone who knows their stuff would be good.

  14. #14
    BellyBelly Member

    Jul 2005
    Sydney
    7,896

    Our girls are getting new bikes for Christmas as well - DD1 is tall enough for a 20" so at least we're avoiding the issue you have about how much use she'll get out of it. DD2 will be getting a balance bike - which is not cheap, but we figure can get handed down. DD1's current bike has lasted two years and was a Mongoose. I can't remember which one we've looked at for this time, but it was something that is a bit exxy and has some kind of design where the child's balance is slightly tilted so as to provide the best posture and propulsion (probably is a byk, so great to read that feedback!). She was too small for this one last time.

    We're getting around the expense element by having Granny buy the bikes, which she wants to do. We would get them ourselves if we had to, but we find both grandmas are eager for suggestions, especially as DD1 gets older. If a whole bike is a bit much, maybe get them to chip in and make it a combined present? (In our family, Santa only brings the smaller presents, much easier to organise then, plus, he has to fit things in his sack and all. )

  15. #15
    Registered User

    Apr 2008
    Melbourne
    6,745

    Pretty much every Sunday wysiwyg

  16. #16
    BellyBelly Member
    Add sepata on Facebook

    Sep 2011
    Sydney
    615

    DD2 will be getting a balance bike - which is not cheap, but we figure can get handed down.
    If you haven't already bought it, Itti bitti have 30% off the all terrain balance bikes they stock for today only. Brigs them down to about $55.

  17. #17
    BellyBelly Member

    Jul 2005
    Sydney
    7,896

    Re: Kids' bikes - do you get what you pay for?

    Thanks for all the advice in this thread - we took the girls to choose bikes on the weekend. DD1 did end up getting the byk E540, which is aimed at 8-13 year olds (and should give her plenty of use!). We did try out a couple of mountain bikes, but the byk one was easier for her to learn gears and stuff on, without being a bit heavy and harder to use. She chose the boys' bike, although the difference in bar height isn't that great. I think she preferred the blue.

    We ended up getting a Giant balance bike for DD2 as the byk balance bike doesn't have the ability to stop the front handlebars swivelling all the way around and is a bit more of a jackknifing risk.

    They were very excited!

  18. #18
    Moderator

    Dec 2006
    Smidgen-ville
    3,736

    Re: Kids' bikes - do you get what you pay for?

    Yay for a new byk Jennifer13. Hope she loves it.

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