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  1. #1
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    7 Year Old MTB recommendation please

    Hi,

    I just discovered this forum -- how exciting!

    My son will be turning 7 this summer and it's time we moved up from the $50 wallyworld special he's been riding.

    He's 70lbs and 50" tall with an inseam of 22" -- and growing fast.

    Can someone help me figure out if a 20 or a 24" bike would be best?

    The primary use will be rocky, unsmooth trail riding, but will also do some field/grass as well as pavement riding.

    Also, I'm looking at the following:

    Gary Fisher Precaliber
    Ibex 320k or 440k
    Specialized Hotrock
    Diamondback Octane
    Bayview trail 24"
    GT Aggressor 24
    Haro Flightline 24
    Trek MT220

    Can someone recommend which of these, or others, that would be best? Price is definitely a factor.

    Thanks very much,

    Joseph
    Last edited by josephnyc; 03-30-2013 at 07:25 PM.

  2. #2
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    Maybe it's the holiday weekend, so everyone's tired of newbies asking what bike should I get for me kid....

    After spending many hours reading reviews and spec, it sure looks like the Diamond Octane 24 ($289 from REI) is a very nice bike for a (big) 7 year old.

    Does anyone see any reason why this would be a mistake?

    Thanks very much!

  3. #3
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    Re: 7 Year Old MTB recommendation please

    I would suggest a 24 unless you want to be upgrading in 6 months. My suggestion would be a Scott Scale jr. Its got an adjustable air fork and a front derailleur. It's also much lighter than most kids' bikes.

  4. #4
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    Look at the Scott Scale Jr 24

  5. #5
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    Thanks for the recommendation of the Scott Scale Jr. It certainly looks great.

    It's also more than $150 more than the Octane, which I found on Amazon for $224 (including shipping).

    I'm not doubting that it's a better bike, but I'd much rather save the $150 unless my son will be dissatisfied or have a harder time with the Octane.

  6. #6
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    The scott scale 24 RC has an airshock and is a grand. It's a great bike!! I was considering a 13-inch Specialized Hotrock 24 and ended up buying a Specialized xs Myka for my 52 inch daughter and it is great. The Myka is a woman's bike. The xs Myka had about the same reach and stand over as the Hardrock. Some here skip 24 bikes and go on to 26. Bill
    Last edited by Billinsd; 03-31-2013 at 09:49 AM.

  7. #7
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    I was looking at the Scott Scale Jr 20 -- sorry.

    The Specialized XS Myka appears to be a 26" bike. My son is 50" wall with a 22" inseam. I'm worried that a 24" bike would be a little big for him.

    Wouldn't 26" definitely be too big?

  8. #8
    turtles make me hot
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    I bought a Craigslist 24" Gary Fisher Tyro for 60 bucks, stripped it down and built it up into a fairly decent hardtail.
    I like turtles

  9. #9
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    Unfortunately, I'm pretty handy but can't take on any projects whatsoever for the next umpteen years (just no time), so I need to make this as easy/least-time-consuming as possible.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by josephnyc View Post

    The Specialized XS Myka appears to be a 26" bike. My son is 50" wall with a 22" inseam. I'm worried that a 24" bike would be a little big for him.

    Wouldn't 26" definitely be too big?
    Probably a bit too big now, but in a few months? I would have him try what ever you buy. The Myka is also a woman's bike, don't know if that matters. Bill

  11. #11
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    He has a Rallye 16" (outside diameter including tires, right?) that he rides fine, but it's just a little small for him, so I'm hoping he a 24 would be for at least a couple of years.

  12. #12
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    You need to get him to stand over a 24 and balance the bike if he can't hold it up then its too much. Also site and stear while holding the bike make sure he has the reach to turn. My daughter is the same size and I went with a hot rock 20". This bike has a lot of adjustability in the stem, put disc hubs and plan to up to a nine speed. Then she can ride until almost 9 then go straight to a 26. I feel for the money Specialized has more adjustability and upgrade capable.

  13. #13
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    Here is a photo of my daughter and her Myka. She has a 21 inch inseam. The bike is a little big for her, but she is not an agressive rider, does not ride down steep rocky terrain yet, mostly cross country stuff, fire roads and single track.

    I also bought a used Sid air shock off Craigslist and replaced the handlebars and seat post with carbon ones and got the weight down from about 30lbs to 25lbs. She loves the bike.

    Bill
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails 7 Year Old MTB recommendation please-2013-02-11_16-04-54_916.jpg  

    7 Year Old MTB recommendation please-2013-03-03_11-51-04_856.jpg  


  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by Roc1 View Post
    Then she can ride until almost 9 then go straight to a 26. I feel for the money Specialized has more adjustability and upgrade capable.
    I think the biggest mistake a parent can make is to prolong their child on a 20" bike (which is way too small) then go straight to a 26" bike which is way too big. Buy the bike that fits them now. They will have way more fun. Would you want to ride a 15" bike if you are 6'2" feet tall, or a 23" bike if you are 5'8"? That's basically what you are doing. Sure you can make it work but it sucks.

    My son has had a 24" since 7, and at 9 not until this summer I can't see him going to 26" until he is at least 10, but probably 11.

  15. #15
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    Thanks so much everyone -- you guys have great experience and knowledge to share and it's very generous of you to do so.

    It sounds like he should be fine on a 24" I'll try to have him straddle one (somewhere).

    The Octane at $225 shipped is looking like a winner.

  16. #16
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    8 year old on a 24 inch wheel. 51 inches tall, 23 inch inseam, 63 lbs.

    7 Year Old MTB recommendation please-toph-mtb.jpg

    By the way, I would not spend $200+ for a bike that has a "Goose Neck" stem.

  17. #17
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    What's a goose neck stem and does the Octane have one?

    If there is a better bike for less than approx $300 (delivered), I'd love a recommendation.

  18. #18
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    Is this the DB Octane?


    7 Year Old MTB recommendation please-db-octane.jpgIs this the bike DB Octane?

  19. #19
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    yes. I see the stem, but I don't know if the shape/design is a bad thing.

  20. #20
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    Maybe, but it may not be the current one.

    Diamondback Bicycles - 2012 Octane 24 Boys
    I like turtles

  21. #21
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    No fine tuning with the "Goose Neck". That position is set in stone unless you want to replace the entire front end.

  22. #22
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    I see. You can see how little I know about MTB.

    Is it silly to think that the set position will be just fine?

  23. #23
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    Most likely your son will never know the difference. Then again he may say his bars are too far away even after you have moved the seat up all the way. You never know.

    However, as a parent I want to make sure my son is using gear that fits properly. An adjustable bike helps a proper fit

  24. #24
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    Not ideal, but with those quill type forks, you could utilize a quill adapter and then use whatever stem and spacer stack you want.
    I like turtles

  25. #25
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    Another option. Get an aluminum framed bike that is the lightest you can find. Something like this from Specialized.
    Specialized Bicycle Components

    It is their "street" version of their 24" bikes. It has a rigid fork and is several pounds lighter than it's suspended brother. Your boy is 70#. So just run about 20psi of air pressure and it'll be what suspension he'll be riding on any bike.

    My son is 53" tall and 64#. I got him the Cannondale Race 24. It's got the air adjustable fork. And he can't blow past the stiction to use any travel. Hopefully when this summer roles around and we've been more hours in, he'll be able to push himself harder and maybe the stiction will have loosened up by then.

    In the meantime, I'm changing out crank arms for something a little shorter and possibly replace the pedals. Otherwise, the hardest part is just carving the time to get out there and ride.

    First time out. He's a little overwhelmed at the park with so many ppl. I think the pedal strikes bothered him the most. Still, he wants to go again which is the most important thing.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails 7 Year Old MTB recommendation please-duthie-ryan.jpg  

    Just get out and ride!

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