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Help with Britax B-Dual, Please!

(15 Posts)
eversomuch Sun 28-Oct-12 21:30:01

I'm trying to get this beast set up in time for DS's arrival at the end of the week, but the thing is doing my head in. I'd be grateful for any guidance anyone can offer regarding:

- Installing the soft carrycot. Britax claim that the soft carrycot "is easily fastened to the harness." The only way we are able to fasten it to the seat is by pressing it into place quite hard and then struggling to reach down between the cot and the seat to hook it into place. I can't imagine a baby will sleep through this.

- When I put the soft carrycot into the seat and fasten it to the seat's D-rings, the cot seems very squeezed in place, the width seems compressed and the mattress doesn't lie perfectly flat. Is this how it's supposed to be?

- The soft carrycot has a pad at the top of the head that velcros to the back of the cot. There is no explanation of what this is or what it's for. Any idea? Just extra cushioning? (And if that's the case, why bother with the velcro?)

- Abdominal strap. Is it really necessary to use this when the baby is in the cot? It's a huge slab of velcro that makes a lot of noise when being opened. Again, I can't imagine a baby will sleep through this. I used a Bugaboo cameleon with DC1 and she was fine in the carrycot without restraint.

- Any other tips, suggestions or caveats I should be aware of? I really want to love this buggy but right now I'm really regretting my choice. sad

eversomuch Mon 29-Oct-12 21:10:49

Anyone?

Tiggywunkle Tue 30-Oct-12 08:43:02

Ok, where are you installing the soft cot? I assume in the bottom? I know it's a very tight fit in there - I had reservations about how easy it was to get in with a child in. Ideally I would recommend you use every safety feature provided. I would fit the soft cot first before putting your baby in. I am not sure that you would need to do it the other way round ie sleeping baby in the soft cot first because a baby really shouldn't be asleep in it outside of the pushchair. So set the soft cot up first, pull the Velcro tummy strap open do that the baby isn't nearby, then get the baby and pop the baby in and do it up. it's more of an issue removing the baby at the other end but if you have arrived home then I guess you try to remove the soft cot or leave the pushchair up. If you are going home in the car the the chances are the baby will go straight back to sleep.
I can't help with the pad part but maybe you can remove it as the baby grows or for washing?
I think TBH you will find a way to make it work best for you. The choices of good tandem are pretty limited and all have compromises.

eversomuch Tue 30-Oct-12 11:28:57

Thanks, Tiggy. Right now, we're trying to install it in the main seat on top. I'll be having an elcs and the plan is to sleep downstairs for the first several nights after we get home, with baby in the carry cot (I had complications after my previous emcs and don't want to risk stairs right away). So not planning to be out and about using it as a double for a little while.

Will add that I'm a bit disappointed that the mattress isn't more padded for a baby. I was hoping to be able to slip the cameleon mattress in for more comfortable sleeping, but the fit is so tight, the mattress bends too much if I try, so that is obviously not going to work after all.

We have got it to fit into the main seat, but as I said, it just seems cramped and not really flat, so I wondered if we were doing something wrong.

I know Britax say to install/remove the cot without baby in it -- guess I was just spoiled by how easy the Bugaboo cot was to swap in and out when DD was born.

As for the velcro pad -- it doesn't come out. I guess it's just there for support.

I'm hoping it will work out and not be a huge hassle or annoyance for the first five or six months when the baby needs to be in. Afterwards, hopefully, it will be easier to use with the two seats than with a seat and carry cot.

Tiggywunkle Tue 30-Oct-12 11:58:27

Ok..you say carrycot in your second message but the soft cotin the first. The soft cot isn't approved for overnight sleeping and I wouldn't use it TBH. If its a carrycot then thats different. Again the Bugaboo carrycots are supposedly suitable for overnight sleeping. But the carrycot isnt great with a toddler underneath - the soft cot works better.

From my experience the best place for the baby in ther B-Dual is in the lower seat. Have you tried it in there? Its quite tricky to get in - lower the front end under the bar, but its more secure down there. I am not suggesting it, but I would suspect it would be quite hard to knock out if the pushchair tipped. But the velcro tummy strap would be useful smile

I dont really understand about the velcro pad but I would just leave it.

Tiggywunkle Tue 30-Oct-12 12:01:59

Sorry I have just reread - you want to use it as a single? If you are wanting it as a single for the baby to sleep in with you downstairs, then I wouldn't do it. Buy the carrycot. If you want to use the soft cot as a tandem, then I would put the soft cot underneath.

I had an elective C-Section the second time, but I didn't bank on the baby having to return to hospital without me, and me having to lift and carry my toddler 3 days after it!!

eversomuch Tue 30-Oct-12 12:25:11

Sorry, I did mean soft carry cot, and we'd just be using it as a single initially, while I'm recovering from the surgery, sleeping downstairs and not really venturing far. So, fingers crossed, not more than a week or so.

It sounds like our options, if we want a temproary overnight sleeping solution, are either to get the hard carry cot for the B-Dual or kick DD out of her Cameleon and use the Bugaboo carry cot for DS to sleep in the first week or so. I was hoping to avoid that, though, as the grandparents will be looking after DD a lot over the next few weeks and I thought the Bugaboo would be easier for them to handle with a toddler than the B-Dual. I guess there's also the Moses basket option, but I've never been crazy about them, from an aesthetic point of view.

Definitely was planning to put the baby in the soft cot in the lower seat of the B-Dual once we're at that point. Haven't actually installed the second seat kit yet, though. DH is planning to tackle that later this week.

I hope this all makes more sense than my previous post(s).

Thank you again!

Tiggywunkle Tue 30-Oct-12 13:03:04

I dont think the B-Dual is bad as a single to handle - its probably easier in some ways than the Cameleon!! I think I would be taking that route TBH rather than spending a lot more money. Or do you have a travel cot with a bassinet part to lift the base up for a newborn? They go cheaply on Ebay. I am not a moses basket fan either, but again for a week it might be a cheap option.

Good luck!! I hope your C-Section goes well. I have had two and my recovery from the Elective was far more rapid than the emergency one.

ItsMyLastOne Tue 30-Oct-12 13:37:43

You can't use the britax soft carrycot for overnight sleeping so you would need to buy a Moses basket or use the cameleon carrycot. I'd just go and buy a cheap Moses basket if I were you, even if they're not pretty, at least it's safe.

Sorry I can't help with the Velcro etc as I haven't used a soft carrycot yet.

Good luck with the ELCS and hopefully you'll feel better this time than last time. smile

snala Tue 30-Oct-12 16:04:12

The britax carry cots aren't approved for overnight sleeping.

A Moses basket seems your best option ( and will take up much less space as the b dual is a beast! )

SickOnMyShoulder Thu 01-Nov-12 10:13:44

We've used the soft carrycot for my 5 week old daughter to sleep in since we got back from hospital. We put it next to our bed for easy feeding. I don't see how it is any less suitable for a newborn than anywhere else they get put for the first few weeks, although her big brother did want to know why baby was sleeping in a duffle bag grin

snala Thu 01-Nov-12 21:52:44

The britax carrycots don't have sufficient ventilation to be suitable for overnight sleeping. They are designed for naps/ transportation.

ItsMyLastOne Thu 01-Nov-12 22:07:07

I was just about to say the same as Snala. They're not suitable for overnight sleeping, they haven't passed necessary safety standards and you really shouldn't use it for that purpose. Just get a Moses basket and be safe in the knowledge you have an appropriate place for your child to sleep which has passed the safety tests.

Tiggywunkle Thu 01-Nov-12 22:11:15

There are reasons why safety regulations exist.
Carrycots and soft cots are deemed safe for a baby to sleep in during the day because the assumption is made that an adult is close to the baby.
There is nothing specific that says a carrycot is suitable for overnight sleeping but a carrycot is very different to a soft cot anyway!
Carrycots which are recommended as suitable for overnight sleeping from my knowledge ideally should have hard bases, placed on the floor or specified stand depending on the brand, and there are specific height measurements for the sides, specific mattress measurements to meet the height regulations, and often have a ventilated base or mattress.
I definitely would not be putting my newborn to sleep overnight in a soft sided soft cot - especially with an older child around as well. I am actually sat here rather horrified that you can't see why its less suitable than a carrycot....

Murtette Sun 04-Nov-12 22:05:35

In your situation, I think I'd be tempted to let the grandparents use the BDual for the toddler meaning you can use the Bugaboo for the baby. The BDual will be heavier & wider for them to push but its a one piece fold which they may find easier (my parents always struggled with remembering how to separate the seat from the chassis with our iCandy).

As for your specific questions on the soft carrycot:
i) I've never managed to hook the carrycot onto both D-rings on the top seat so have rarely used the carrycot on the top seat. However, on the couple of occasions I have, DS has slept through it.
ii) I haven't noticed this but, as I said, I've rarely used it on the top seat
iii) I havent figured out this pad bit in the slightest and really cannot see the purpose of it
iv) abdominal strap - I also find this weird. Again, DS does sleep through opening/closing it but it does dictate where you position them in the carrycot (so can't do feet to foot) and, on the rare occasions it was hot over the summer, I used to worry that it would make DS overheat as it was so thick.
For all of the above, I've rarely used the soft carrycot & instead just had him lie flat in the seat or put him in the car seat.

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