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The unknown territory of bike-buying for a 4 year old...........

(24 Posts)
PuffTheMagicDragon Fri 22-Apr-05 11:51:04

It's ds1's 4th birthday in June.

We want to buy him a "proper" bike, with stabilisers etc.

We were thinking of just going down to Halfords.

Are there any other secret bike buying places we need to know about?

Pamina3 Fri 22-Apr-05 11:52:50

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ambrosia Fri 22-Apr-05 11:53:22

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MarsLady Fri 22-Apr-05 11:55:56

do you have a bike shop locally? I tend to use ours because they check that it's the right fit for the kids etc. And don't forget to buy a helmet! Saw a bad bike accident recently. Helmets are my bugbear

cod Fri 22-Apr-05 11:57:10

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Marina Fri 22-Apr-05 11:58:33

Agree with MarsLady, a local bike shop with expert staff much better IMO. We went to Sidcup Cycles (!) and they were totally brilliant. Much bigger range, no problem about spending a lot of time advising us (and the shop was not exactly deserted).
Even if you are adult bike riders I think there is a case for shopping for this type of purchase in person.
Whereabouts are you Puff? I bet Sustrans has a list of local cycle shops nationwide.

PuffTheMagicDragon Fri 22-Apr-05 12:36:21

We're in West London - don't mind travelling a bit to go to a good bike shop.

So, is it best to take him with us then?

Gobbledigook Fri 22-Apr-05 12:38:02

sorry to hijack a moment but do you think a 2.5 yr old could ride a bike? ds2 really struggles with a trike - I think because the wheels are in front of him so it's a bit of a funny position.

Do bikes come small enough?

MarsLady Fri 22-Apr-05 12:44:05

yes take him. gbg despite being for them trikes don't suit wee ones. The gravity is all wrong, takes more effort to pedal. Not sure about tiny bikes but I bet they are made

scotlou Fri 22-Apr-05 12:46:28

It's best if you take your child with you so you can be sure he fits the bike! My brother used to have a bike shop and now works in Halfords - his advice is don't be tempted to get one that is too big just cos you don't want them to grow out of it too fast. Make sure they can at least put a good part of each foot on the ground so they can stop it easily. He recommends good old Raleighs by the way!! My ds had a 2 wheeler with stabilisers from around 2ys 8 mnths - but he could already pedal. It was a Raleigh and did him fine until he got his balance last summer (at 4.5) and he moved to a bigger one.

Marina Fri 22-Apr-05 14:07:20

GDG I remember reading somewhere that in Germany little bikes with no saddle (rather like a ride-on toy I guess) are very popular with smaller children, and can aid their transition to a bigger bike without stabilisers really effectively. Pamina knows about these, I am sure of it.
Puff I bet there is a good bike shop in Kensington/Notting Hill or Kingston...Putney, Ealing?

zebraX Fri 22-Apr-05 14:16:48

got ours at 1) car boot sale; 2)&3) give-aways by friends, these are the ones DS1 actually learnt to ride on & 4) in a charity shop... we are a cycling family and they were all good enough for us. Charity shop one esp. good.

Pamina3 Fri 22-Apr-05 14:18:12

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Marina Fri 22-Apr-05 14:19:12

I knew I had seen a Teutonic convo about this! I'd be really interested to hear how she gets on with it Pamina, our not-weedy dd is also making heavy weather of her trike.

PuffTheMagicDragon Fri 22-Apr-05 14:35:35

Great advice everyone. Thank you .

I do know it has to be red, that's the one stipulation we've had from ds!

Pamina3 Fri 22-Apr-05 14:36:46

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Marina Fri 22-Apr-05 14:38:05

Already, OMG. I remember cuddling her as a newborn as though it was yesterday. Might need a net and gauntlets now though eh .

Pamina3 Fri 22-Apr-05 15:02:06

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Marina Fri 22-Apr-05 15:05:30

she's not that hairy. Behaviourally I refuse to be drawn Our is on pinch watch for throwing pans at her little friends from some kind of pillbox she constructed in the home corner. Then she started pinching anyone who penetrated the defences. Not nice

Pamina3 Fri 22-Apr-05 15:08:31

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

LunarSea Fri 22-Apr-05 16:50:42

GDG - ds could ride a bike at 20 months, so if yours is reasonably active I'd say no problem at 2 and a half. The bike with no pedals is called "Like-Bike" I think?

cjn21 Sat 23-Apr-05 08:22:20

Puff, I know it is a bit of a trek from west london but we always go to brixton cycles , they are excellent, really helpful and you can part exchange when child gets to big for bike and needs to get a bigger one. We like them so much we drive from North London! You can call them first they are very helpful over the phone. They do the Puky range of children's bikes which are great and very robust made in Germany. Happy shopping!

PuffTheMagicDragon Sun 24-Apr-05 17:44:52

cjn, thank you - we don't mind driving to a good shop, so we'll definitely go there - I really like the part exchange option too.

OK, that's ds1 birthday present sorted .

SofiaAmes Thu 28-Apr-05 00:19:22

I took ds (4.5) to toys r us a few months before xmas, tried out lots of bikes and then bought one later from costco for a lot less money. I can second sterlinghouse. We've had several adult bikes from them and they are brilliant, cheap and really prompt about delivery.

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