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Pramaholics - come this way plese!

(32 Posts)
Olihan Sat 18-Nov-06 19:28:26

Right, I need your extensive experiences to help me make a decision!!

I need a double buggy for a 16 month old and a newborn. So far I've looked at and decided against:

Graco/Mothercare tandems - too bulky and hard to control.

Combi WE2: too flimsy

Maclaren etc side by side; too hard to push and control walking 3 yr old ds simultaneously!

Kidz Kargo Discovera Tandem: too hard to push and steer with a heavyish toddler in the front.

Out and About Nipper: Too lightweight and don't like the way the seats lie back so far even when fully upright.

Phil and Ted's E3: don't like the seat underneath or the lack of anywhere to carry shopping when both seats in use.

Most of the 3 wheel doubles won't fit through my front door.

M&P Twin Aria: Too low down and rickety.

So, at the moment I am VERY keen on the First Wheels City Twin which does everything I want it too but is massive when folded. I love the styling, the fact that the seats can face each way, the option to have a carrycot, the single handle so I can hold ds's hand when I ned to and still steer easily. It's also quite expensive and there aren't relly any secondhand ones about because it's so new.

The only other ones I can think of are the Jane Powertwin, or the Cosatto Duet Lite/Mothercare Hoxton/Marco Sky type. Can anyone give me the pros and cons of these or suggest any that I might have missed?

It will mainly be used for walking ds to preschool, going round the shops, going out for walks locally. It doesn't need to fit on public transport and we've got a Zafira which has a decent size boot.

All suggestions would be appreciated!

Olihan Sat 18-Nov-06 20:02:12

Oh no, just seen the typos in the title and post. Sorry all, dh's stupid laptop is a nightmare to type on!

jojo76 Sun 19-Nov-06 14:40:07

Ive got a marco sky, which im selling, incidentally! You cant use these with a newborn though because the rear seat doesnt go flat. I have been using it with a four month old and two year old though and it is great for that, especailly if you put a nice cosy fleecy cosytoes in the back for the baby. good for short journeys, the only thing i would say is that it is quite heavy to get in and out of the car, and i dont find it very easy to steer, although this might be because im quite short and the handles are fairly high! Im selling mine because im expecting and its not suitable for a newborn, but for older ones it is fine....hth!

BuffysMum Sun 19-Nov-06 14:43:25

As you don't like the E3 then I think the only thing worth trying is the Powertwin. My CM and I tried the marco sky and even though she goes to the gym & has a triple in line neither of us could steer the darn thing! Presumably if you got the car seat too the baby could face the older one in the rear??????


aaronsmummy Sun 19-Nov-06 14:45:08

Powertwin or First Wheels City Twin would be the best for you. Much better for comfort. As you don't use public transport there is no need for the Hoxton etc and they aren't comfy at all imo.

I have had both and though different both are fantastic.

shhhh Sun 19-Nov-06 14:59:05

We are getting a twin pram as dd will be around 20 months when ds2b arrives in Jan. We went through a similar list as you and were 100% on the first wheels one...till we saw it. Its not small at all when folder and was quite bulky and heavy for me to lift. I love the fact that both seats faced mum&dad though and liked the look of it...
BUT we are now geting the Jan twin two and a car seat so that dd can face outwards as she does now BUT baby can still face me for a while anyway. Also the car seat that you buy for it lasts till baby is 18 months so hopefully no new car seat needed for well over a year..! Its rrp if around £500 BUT we have got it for £425 inc the car seat.

Its quite long and not mega compact BUT we guessed that this would be the case with all twin prams.


IlanaK Sun 19-Nov-06 16:02:41

What about an Emmaljunga? I don't see that mentioned anywhere on here. A really solid and lovely pram. You can get it as as 2 in 1 or a 3 in 1 and then you put a toddler seat on the top. The toddler seat is specially made for the pram and is very well built. It actually reclines so your toddler can sleep too. The main pram can face in or out so the toddler seat can face in or out too. It does fold (both the pram and the toddler seat, but it still faily large. I can fit it in the boot of my small hatchback, but only by taking off the wheels (they pop off easily). It is a proper pram style with fixed wheels and a large metal storage tray underneath. I love love love mine and used it a lot.

Try this site emmaljunga

It is the classic due combi that I am talking about with the toddler seat added.

peainthepod Sun 19-Nov-06 20:11:24

I have the first wheels city twin for newborn and a 2 year old. I LOVE it....really is fabulous to push and steer and not too wide for a side by side double.

suzi2 Sun 19-Nov-06 20:28:25

I'm having similar dilemmas - DS will be 18 months when DD arrives in Feb. Two of my local pram shops said that they couldn't recommend the powertwin if the front passenger was 15kgs or over as they have been known to collapse under that weight. DS is a long way off that but still it put me off a little. I also, personally, wouldn't use either of the Jane newborn car seats as they don't meet my standards lol.

Was eyeing up the city twin but I have been told it's pretty heavy and cumbersome.

The only 2 options left for me are the nipper double (DS thought it was great fun!) and the ABC buggy with toddler seat. I'm dubious though that I can't see the ABC before buying. I think I'm going to use slings for one or the other to start with and decide once baby is here... if only there was city twin like buggy on the market that was lightweight, folded small and took a good infant carrier car seat... sigh...

cazzybabs Sun 19-Nov-06 20:29:28

Mountain buggy double - supposed to be narrower than normal double buggies - we only have the single and it is fantastic!

Chamomile Sun 19-Nov-06 20:44:14

I had a 14 month gap between my two and was very happy with the Maclaren side by side. I don't remember finding it hard to handle. I had the Graco tandem first and didn't like it.

bubbaloo Mon 20-Nov-06 16:08:28

I actually started a thread last week asking about double buggies,as came to the conclusion That I was going to get the Jane Power Twin.However,I had a good look at it today in Mothercare and found out that if you have the baby carrier on the back,the front seat doesn't recline and even when folded it looked huge(even with the wheels off).I've only got a Fiesta so obviously quite limited size wise with what I can get,but after "test driving" the Mothercare Hoxton buggy today,I may go for that.It folds up very small,not much bigger than my Maclaren and is nice to push and not bulky.Only downside seemed to be the front seat is rather small,so need to take Ds with me to try him out and see if he fits.
Also,I'm only going to be using the buggy for about a year as Ds will be 22 months when the new baby arrives,so only spending £200,makes alot of sense.

Dragonhart Mon 20-Nov-06 18:01:03

Dos anyone know if you can get the first wheels city twin on the bus?

Pollyanna Mon 20-Nov-06 18:04:10

best double imo and ime is the mountain buggy double.

redshoes Mon 20-Nov-06 18:38:26

\Another vote for Mountain Buggy Urban Double (but no double pushchair easy to get in and out of car IME)

Kelly1978 Mon 20-Nov-06 19:08:04

jane powertwin is my fav. I like the fact that you can get a car seat on it so you don't have to disturb sleeping newborns and it is very easy to push and does fold up quite compactly for a double.

My dts decided they hated tandems once they were old enough to voice an opinion and I bought an Emmaljunga. They are lovely prams, great for long walks and very luxurious but not practical for lifting in and out of the car or getting through narrow doors.

normalness Mon 20-Nov-06 19:41:09

I despise the Marco Sky. Totally unmanoevrable, really heavy (whatever the ads might say), poor quality. It is teeny though, so if that's important then....

Don't underrate the E3. My children fight to go in the bottom seat as they think it's a cosy little house! I keep the bottom seat on when I only have one child in it as you can fit masses of shopping in it. It's easy to fold and small with the wheels popped off, and really really easy to push. You can also get panier bags for shopping - I have them and they're very handy, especially as you can just take them off when you need to put the pram in the car, which is easier than unloading the parcel tray.

BTW, children don't all stop going in pushchairs when they're 3. My 4.5yo still gets in for a rest if we're out all day.

Olihan Mon 20-Nov-06 21:09:19

Sorry I haven't been back sooner to reply - haven't had time to get on the computer for the last couple of days!

Thank you everyone for all your suggestions and advice. You didn't make my decision any easier but it was great to have all the experiences and options of pushchairs we hadn't thought of.

We spent Sunday and today looking at all the options again, including the Emmaljungas, Powertwin and the umbrella fold tandems. The main conclusion we came to was that there is no such thing as the perfect double pushchair!

I agree with all of you who say how unmanageable the Sky type buggies are - what a nightmare and that was just with 14 month dd in it.

The emmaljunga is narrower than the firstwheels but is still quite bulky when it's folded and dh didn't like it much - he was a bit nervous about dd in the toddler seat, she's a bit of a houdini at the best of times so that ruled that out too.

I liked the powertwin a lot but we already have the only newborn carseat that will fit alongside our other 2 seats so it wasn't sensible to have to buy another one so the baby could fit in the pram!

The only one I haven't seen in the flesh and tried is the Mountain buggy but dh wasn't keen on its looks so he can take the blame for rejecting it!

In the end, the only one we both agreed on was the First Wheels so we've ordered it! It is big when it's folded but the carrycot (which is suitable for overnight sleeping) and the fact it faces both ways and isn't ridiculously wide swung it. Fingers crossed we've chosen the right one or it will be a costly mistake!

Dragonheart, unless you have the buses with the wide disabled access I don't think you'd get it on, you certainly wouldn't want to collapse it because you have to take the seats off.

Dragonhart Mon 20-Nov-06 22:07:55

Cheers Olihan, all our buses have wheelchair and pushchair access so might consider it!

My fav double is the Bebe Confort Twin Club, but it is not available in the UK so I cant try it and therefore am nervous about paying alot for it then getting it home and hating it!

Hope you find what you want despite the fact that ALL DOUBLE BUGGIES ARE CRAP!!!

peainthepod Tue 21-Nov-06 08:13:56

I have the first wheels one and despite loving it would never consider taking it on a bus.

autumnlover Tue 21-Nov-06 20:32:31

Hi peainthepod, many thanks for your reply to my thread about the first wheels. the website was really useful as we could see the folding system, although it is a pain having to take the seats off but hey ho. i'm very keen on it, although dh says it looks to 'trendy' for him.

anyhow, i was also wondering - are the seats (not carrycot) from newborn or can you only have a newborn with the carrycot?? also is there a raincover for the carrycot?? its all so complicated.
how old are/were your children when you got the first wheels?? also i read on a website that the seats are up to 15kg - whats that about?!?!

many thanks again

Olihan Wed 22-Nov-06 19:58:09

Hi, autumnlover, having had a really good look at the First Wheels I think I can answer your questions!

Seats: they come with a newborn wedge so that they are suitable from birth.

Carrycot: comes with its own raincover and insect net (the raincovers are individual for each seat unit too - v useful if you've got a stubborn toddler who doesn't want it on but a baby who needs it!

Most pushchairs say they are only suitable up to 15kg but that's the weight of an average 3-4 year old so unless you have an extremely heavy toddler I doubt it will matter for you.

Just bear in mind that the picture of the folded chassis on the website is a bit misleading - it stays the same width and the length from the handle to the top of the seat brackets is quite long. It can't really be described as 'compact' by anyone other than an ad copywriter!! Put it this way, it fills the boot of our Xsara completely as it has to stand upright, it's too long to lie down. We've also got a Zafira and it's fine in that. Apparently the wheels are quick release ones so you could pop them off to free up some space but it would be a real faff to have to do that everytime.

If you haven't seen it in the flesh I'd really recommend finding a stockist as 1) that swung dh over to my way of thinking! and 2) you can have a good fiddle and see how practical it would be for you. Not sure if this is the website you've seen but it has a list of stockists . HTH

peainthepod Wed 22-Nov-06 20:01:04

The seats are from 6 months (I think) as they don't lay go fully flat - they do recline though but I personally wouldn't be happy with a newborn in them.

The carrycot is lovely with a nice comfy mattress and an 'apron' that covers it. Its quite a long carrycot but not particularly wide so I guess it'll just about fit an average baby until 6months. The seats themselves aren't particularly wide either. There's no raincover for the carrycot but you can buy them in mothercare - I have discovered though that the spare seat raincover fits it ok-ish if you put it on back-to-front so I've made do with that if its started raining and its kept baby dry!

I had it in Sept when dd3 was born and dd2 was nearly 2, dd2 loves it btw! The weight range is quite heavy I thought....dd1 who's nearly 4 fits in the seat (she insisted on trying it) and isn't 15kg.

Oh and it is quite 'trendy' but thats the point!!!! My DH was reluctant to get it but I insisted as its mainly me who woulld be using it. I've had loads of people stop and ask me where I got it when out and about -almost every time we go shopping.

autumnlover Wed 22-Nov-06 22:41:23

thank you so much for your advice.

peainthepod - glad i'm not the only buying it for number 3!! . DD2 will only be 20 mths when baby 3 is born, so definitely need something to strap her into for the school run. do i really need the carrycot - i know its nice but essential??? probably i know, but its so expensive.

i have a mazda5 which is only slightly smaller than the zafira so it should be alright in the book. we do intend to see it before buying - hoping to get in the sales really.

my main concern is that DD1 does have an after-school activity which i'll need to drive to. the thought of getting all three of them out of the car on a tight timescale is overwhelming. thats why the maclaren techno is tempting as we have the techno XT at the moment so at least i'm already familiar with the folding and opening system.

nappyaddict Mon 27-Nov-06 01:34:03

how about this

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