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  1. #1
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    Brother-in-law got my 6-year-old nephew a crappy dept store 20 bike

    this past Christmas. I don't mean any disrespect toward my bil or sound like this is an awful gift, but the bike doesn't fit him right even though he is ready for a 20" bike and it's very heavy. The front brakes are pretty useless as they don't adjust correctly and the lever requires quite a bit of muscle power to move--not good for small hands. And I don't mean to sound snooty, but the graphics and add-ons look stupid.

    I had plan to get him a newer bike, most likely another Specialized Hotrock with 20" tires at some point. He's currently riding a 16" Hotrock, and before that a 12" Hotrock. Both I bought for him. He's outgrowing the 16 but can't and won't ride the crappy dept. store bike. It's not because it's a dept. store bike (he's not shallow or critical like me ) but rather that he feels uncomfortable on it. So it's just sitting there.

    I didn't want to disrespect my bil or brush his present off by getting another bike for my nephew, but the fact that he's still riding the 16 HR when he's ready for a 20" bike made me say screw it and just get him a 20" HR as I had planned.

    And the other day I did get him one: a like-new 2011 Specialized Hotrock coaster/rear v-brakes off craigslist. I haven't given it to him yet. This bike is way (and I mean way) better than the crappy Next bike. Looks like a real bike without the cheesy graphics and add-ons. It has a lower SO height and is lighter. That's what I like about Specialized's kids bikes is that they use an aluminum frame and the bikes look like mini versions of an adult bike. People compliment him and his bike when we go riding. The other week at a burger place some guy said is that a Specialized bike? He didn't know Specialized made bikes that small for kids and thought it was a cool-looking bike

    I'm wondering how I should give the bike to my nephew without possibly offending my bil since he had given him one for Christmas. Should I just casually give it and act like I forgot he got a new bike already? Or say that his new bike got stolen (which is at my parents place) and this is a replacement? I mean both bikes are green...maybe don't say anything and he won't notice

  2. #2
    Havok
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    Not sure the situation, but maybe one bike could be for home, one for when he visits or when you take him to ride. It would be totally easy to say "here you go, now you have one to ride when you visit uncle djork" I'm sure your nephew will like the hotrock best, he'll probably ask to take it home. Boom. Done

  3. #3
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    Dude, I know others will beg to differ, but somewhat honesty is the best policy I'd tell your B.i.L that you came across this new bike just by happen stance and the person was basically giving it away and while his son did have the new bike it was still a bit big for him and this should fit him better, you couldn't pass it up.

    If you're B.i.L is too much of a macho man and has too much stupid pride then he may not accept it, but if hew wants the best for his kid, he will. I have no problem telling anyone I don't make much and barely survive and my brothers do a lot better than me, if I had a kid and could only afford a NEXT bike and then one of them bough him a nice bike, I'd be SO grateful.

    The difference between one of those cheap POS NEXT etc bikes and one from a "proper" manufacturer is amazing, I know, I did similar for my little cousin, not because his parents can't afford it or his grandparents, but because to them, a bike is a bike. When I found him his recent 24" Jamis and how much lighter it was than that dept store POS, he wanted to ride more, explore more, because honestly what kid is inspired to ride a bike that weighs as much or more tha my XL FS bike
    One day your life will flash before your eyes, will it be worth watching??
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  4. #4
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    Lynx, I think that's how my bil and I'm sure the rest of my family feels about bikes--they're all the same so why pay more when Walmart has one for under $100. He could definitely afford a better bike, and coming from a BMX riding background you 'd think he would understand quality, but I guess it just came down to marketing and the pizazz factor of these crappy dept. store bikes. The bike is called "Wipe Out" and has like flashy green and black colors and looks like a BMX bike. First time he rode it he crashed and the front brake got messed up. Next to worthless brake setup.

    Anyway, I'm just not going to worry about giving the HR to my nephew and potentially offending anyone. It's about my nephew and him getting a new bike that he can use and ride. Haven't shown him the bike yet, but he knows I have a surprise

  5. #5
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    Sweet! Dad should understand. If not he will get over it later. Fix the boy up!
    2013 Cannondale F29 1 Alloy
    2013 Cervelo S5 Rival

  6. #6
    ilmfat
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    I'd give it to your nephew and let your BIL choose between letting his son have a better bike or being the bad guy.

    Then if dude wants to hassle you, I'd lecture him on buying junk.

    Tho, I'm known quite well for my "socially unacceptable" behavior.

    "It's easier to ask forgiveness, than ask permission." -George Washington
    crap! i gotta learn to climb.

  7. #7
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    Long over due update. I did get my nephew the Hotrock. The bike is in excellent, like-new condition. It's the green/white 2011 model. I remember seeing this bike back when Specialized rolled out that color scheme and thought to myself that I'd like to get it for my nephew, as the green and white reminded me of my kermit green Niner Air9, but he was too small back then. So fast forward to now. I finally got the opportunity to get him this bike, which, btw, fits him nicely, and I got it for a great price to boot. He can use the functional hand brake and stop without feeling like he's going to tip over. He loves it!

    A few weeks back I took him to get some burgers, and we both rode our green bikes--him on his apple green w/ white accents Hotrock and me on my kermit green w/ white accents Niner. I have to say, his bike looks cool! Of course he had to show and tell everyone about his new bike, and he did show his dad when he came to pick him up. No grief from anyone

    I recently bought a pair of ODI Tangent mini (80mm?) lockon grips to replace the green "mushroom" grips that came with the bike. Earlier today I spray painted the black lock rings gloss white to add to the white accent theme. And maybe somewhere down the line I'll replace the stock Tektro brake lever with an Avid FR5. The Tektro lever is a bit stiff but not as stiff as the pos lever that's on the Next bike. I love upgrading his bike as much as I do mine. Also upgraded his helmet too. Got him a Fox Transition helmet in...wait for it...GREEN, which actually matches the green frame. Gave him the same helmet but in gloss black a couple of Christmas ago, but he never used it, preferring his beat-up and rather heavy Bell helmet I got him years ago. Hopefully he will take a liking to the green Fox helmet, which is lighter. I highly recommend this helmet to parents for that reason, plus safety of course. I have one in matte black for commuting. May use the gloss black as an extra.

    Pics to come!

  8. #8
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    Sounds great. Thanks for the recommendation for the helmet. Just looked and CRC having it reduced to 12.79!

  9. #9
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    Glad to hear everything went smoothly, as it should. Before you write off those brake levers, make sure you check the brake housing and cables, it's amazing the POS cables you get OEM on bikes.
    One day your life will flash before your eyes, will it be worth watching??
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  10. #10
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    Well here are some pics!

    First upgrade was Odi Tangent mini lockon grips. I painted the black lock rings white.


    Next to my kermit green Ninier Air9


    Here's the two of us looking cool in our green bikes!

  11. #11
    ilmfat
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    Darn you, djork.

    I've been trying not to build another bike, but I LOVE the Kermit green.

    Next year next year next year...
    crap! i gotta learn to climb.

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by ilmfat View Post
    Darn you, djork.

    I've been trying not to build another bike, but I LOVE the Kermit green.

    Next year next year next year...
    Do it do it

  13. #13
    ilmfat
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    I wasn't too interested in niner, but during vassago's hiatus I checked out their geo, and it's compelling.

    Wouldn't be too compelling, but the Kermit greeeeeeeeeennnnn!!!!!!

    Luckily I'm focused on kids bikes.

    My wife doesn't seem to mind when when I splurge on THEM.
    crap! i gotta learn to climb.

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